CULTURE

yu miri

No45 [Interview] For those with nowhere to go

The author Yu miri, as someone who had nowhere to go herself, has continued writing for people in the same situation. In 2018, two translations of author Yu Miri’s works will be released in the U.K. Living a mere 23km from the troubled nuclear plant in Fukushima prefecture, what does Miri see now,[...]

No43 [Tradition] Fertility pure and simple

Every spring Kawasaki welcomes thousands of visitors who come to celebrate sexuality. At the Kanayama shrine, a group of around twenty people are gathered in front of an altar upon which rice moulded into the shapes of two penises and vaginas have been placed. These intimate symbols of fertility are[...]

No43 [Music] Very Japanese…?!

These two unique Japanese artists made a great success of their recent performances at London comic con. MCM Comic Con was recently held in London from the 27th to the 29th of May. This event was a great success, seeing over 130,000 visitors, and was also the stage for impassioned performances from [...]

No42 [Trend] Secondhand goods are so good

Secondhand shops are part of life in Japanese cities, and people love to visit them. It’s 4pm in the bohemian district of Shimokitazawa. Here, to the northwest of Tokyo, the streets are full of secondhand shops. People come here to look for a bargain with a touch of style that won’t break the ba[...]

No41 [Interview] In the shadow of the superheroes

after playing the key character in Ultraman’s first series, kurobe Susumu still remains very popular 50 years later. Since the beginning of the Ultraman saga 50 years ago, many actors have played Ultraman’s human alter ego, but few people can compete in popularity with Kurobe Susumu, aka the[...]

No41 [Cinema] Iwai Shunji, multi-talented genius

On the release his new picture; The Murder Case of Hana & Alice, the filmmaker reveals what motivates his work. Ten years after Hana & Alice (the 2004 film that consolidated his fame as one of Japan’s top directors), Iwai Shunji has finally managed to fulfil his dream of making another w[...]

No41 [Memory] Q-chan, or the testimony of a fan

Since the character was first shown in 1966, the various Ultraman series have enjoyed a unprecedented level of popularity in Japan. The good folk who live in Soshigaya, a quiet district in the Tokyo suburbs, can sleep peacefully, as Ultraman watches over the neighbourhood. The superhero’s red and [...]

No41 [Encounter] A unique skill

President of Tsuburaya Productions, Ooka Shinichi looks back on his career and the incredible longevity of his superhero.   Though most movie fans are interested only in the people who appear in front of the camera, film making is very much a team effort and the invisible crew working in the ba[...]

No41 [Focus] Happy birthday Ultraman!

Ultraman, a hero created by Tsuburaya Productions, inspires nostalgic memories in Japan. At a time when Hollywood superheroes are increasingly invading our screens, to the extent that some of them even appear to be fighting among themselves now, Japan is about to celebrate the 50th anniversary of it[...]

No40 [Art] It’s Setouchi’s Triennial again

Over a million visitors are expected to come to the Inland Sea islands this year to celebrate contemporary art. A giant bamboo dome is one of the major installations of the Setouchi Triennial art festival this year. It required around 5,000 bamboo trees to be woven together by hand, in record time. [...]