Happy Halloween! I haven’t celebrated in years but I’m hope you guys enjoy yours. I’ve already gotten my bag of goodies (at the grocery store) and made plans to dodge every trick or treater that comes my way. Maybe I’ll watch Asian horror movies if I man up a bit (don’t count on it).
I promised I will be dedicating this week’s round up to Tara because I called her a non-gamer. Gomen! However, nothing about the videos below have to deal with her (not really at least). ^^v
As always, enjoy. More »
This article brought back the incident of the February 10, 2008 Namdaemun or Sungnyemun Arson. More than half a year has gone by, and I still can’t believe that this arson happened to the Namdaemun gate. This whole incident feels very surreal. Even when I heard the news back in February, I was in a state of a dream-like shock at how someone would do such a thing to Korea’s National Treasure #1.
Couple weeks after the fire, I was with my best friend. We rode a bus from Myeong-dong back to my place. The bus, #143, has a route that goes around Namdaemun. We were on it, and when it first went past the area where the gate should have been, we didn’t see it. I grew confused. I was wondering how it was possible to miss seeing something big like that. But then bus turned around to head back to where we first came from. That was when we saw just what threw me off for a loop. They had one of those gigantic construction walls around the gate, preventing us from seeing the burnt down gate. More »
Dan Pink says the key to creating a good speech is brevity, levity, and repetition; however, the ex-speechwriter for vice president Al Gore doesn’t know that the key to creating great western manga is well, Dan Pink.
In the U.S, manga is still a rare medium; it takes a special type of gaijin to appreciate these graphic novels on a mature level. In the manga created by Dan, ”The Adventures Johnny Bunko: The Last Career Guide You’ll Ever Need”, potent lessons are brought to life in a lighthearted and universal way.
There are several reasons to love the graphic novelette in that this fictional tale is more than just an impersonal, quick keyword search. Unlike a reference guide, it isn’t a over-expensive, obsolete, bible-size book stuck on some dusty bookstore shelf. With this manga you will get tactical information, a bit of fantasy, and common sense wrapped up in a quick read. The viable concepts don’t outweigh the fun either. Many of us can relate to Johnny’s experience in working all-nighters and eating take-out food that we never get to truly relax and enjoy. Also, I am sure that we all wish we had magical genie that exploded from a pair of chopsticks. More »
Oh man oh man it’s finally out - the latest installment of the DJ Max Portable series on PSP - Clazziquai Edition! Loaded with songs from Korean Acid Jazz/Electronica/R&B fusion band Clazziquai, DJMPCE isn’t the “official sequel” to DJ Max Portable 2, but rather a side title of the main series (similar to Guitar Hero Aerosmith). With new modes like 2 button and 4 button FX, CE is geared towards newcomers that might have been scared off by the difficulty of the first two games.
For those who have no idea what I’m talking about, DJ Max Portable is what I would call “DDR for your thumbs”… or better yet, a much more polished version of Beatmania. Notes fall down from the top of the screen and you must push the corresponding button at the right time - proper timing results in a song that sounds on-rhythm! Clazziquai includes 2 button (up/left and triangle/circle), 4 button (left, up, triangle, circle), 5 button (left, up, right/square, triangle, circle), 6 button (left, up, right…), and 4 button FX (adds R and L) modes to suit your skill level as you familiarize yourself with the gameplay. Trust me - it’s not easy when you first start out, but once you get the hang of it, pushing those buttons and hearing the notes becomes some kind of aural crack…
What really makes DJ Max special is a combination of great songs, amazing gameplay, perfect execution, and endless replay value. That, however, doesn’t make Clazziquai Edition perfect - it’s far too easy, there’s only 48 songs (compared to the 100+ in DJMP2), the note charts aren’t as fun - but make no mistake, it’s still a fabulous game with great music. More »
When David wrote this entry up couple weeks ago, I decided that it’s a really good thing I am not a linguist. Really, I would make a horrible linguist because it took me eighteen years of my life to realise this uber-late revelation about myself and other people. Or at least most of the people I ran into fit this category. And no, I am not talking about drug addicts, although with the amount of meds I had to intake in the last year alone makes me feel like one.
Ahem. The point is that when I was at a karaoke / no rae bang when I was about eighteen, I was singing Final Fantasy X’s “Suteki Da Ne” in Japanese, and I noticed that I was able to sing at a higher pitch than most English songs. In fact, that was when I realised that I can sing higher in Korean and Japanese than in English. Even when I talk normally in Korean and Japanese, my voice pitch is higher. That’s when I started to pay attention to my other bilingual or multilingual speaking acquaintances and friends.
I noticed that a lot of people who speaks Japanese/English, Korean/English, and Tagalog/English all speak in a higher tone with the Asian language and in lower tones with English. Now with some people, there might be no differences or it could even be the opposite, but from my experiences, that’s what I came to the conclusion as. I am aware that this finding has to do with the differences in the language’s wavelength and all those other linguist terms I am not familiar with, but it still kind of fascinates me. Now, whenever I know someone is bilingual or multilingual, I listen and compare different pitches in the languages as my personal experiment!
Now here are two video examples . . . which some of you may have seen. I was trying to look for better videos, but in the end, this won over because they are so cracktastic, especially with the the second one. More »
Residents of Albuquerque, New Mexico, please take heed. Clear the way for Jackie Chan as he chops and kicks his way to your city soon. The Hong Kong action superstar will film his new flick “The Spy Next Door” in your ‘hood in November and December. He is expected to bring an entourage of 150 local crew members and more than 600 actors, including principals and extras. I believe this will be the most exciting event that has happened in Albuquerque ever since the first travelers on Route 66 appeared in the city in 1926.
In the movie, Jackie plays a man who is asked to baby-sit for his neighbor’s children and winds up having to protect them from secret agents after one of them accidentally downloads a code. I am sure there will be many funny fight scenes — one in which Jackie accidentally hits an object instead of a person and writhes in pain — a trademark of Jackie Chan’s flicks.
If I were Jackie, I would load up on the microwaveable Asian food and vodka. I heard Albuquerque is freaking boring and has a shitty selection of Asian restaurants. But fear not, the “gourmet” Chinese food purveyor Panda Express is there, and its Orange Chicken is simply to die for. I gagged a bit when I wrote that.
He’s bad, he’s nationwide….or is that WORLDwide? In my previous interview with Sung Kang, I made a brief reference to Kang’s ad campaign with China-based Jump Shoes. But this recent collaboration is much more than “Kang as spokesmodel.” It truly is a sharing of ideas, and a new way for Sung to exercise his many creative gifts. Here’s the first short film from a series developed by Kang and the Jump Shoes marketing team, and produced by Arowana Films: More »
Big Bang, the Korean 5-man hip-hop unit was interviewed by Osaka’s Daily Sports Online on the 27th of this month.
Their debut Japanese album “NUMBER 1” was released earlier this month. Their tour of Japan starts on the 28th, and all of the tickets were completely sold out in one day, showing how their popularity in Japan continues to rise. Tae Yang himself stated in the interview that “The live performances in America this coming year have been confirmed.” No other details have been revealed yet, but we’re all looking forward to it!
Short version: Around 1am Tuesday morning we took our servers down to allow us to work on preparations for the new design and new features. During this time a hard drive problem was discovered on our lone database server. While we have multiple web servers, we only had one database server. Because it was the hard drive that needed replacing, we basically had to install and reconfigure everything all over again. However, no data was loss during this entire process as we made a complete backup before taking the server offline. All in all, Ningin was down for about 36 hours - 4 hours spent diagnosing the problem, 18 hours waiting on a new server, 8 hours setup time, 4 hours originally scheduled upgrade and maintenance, and last but not least, 2 hours of intermittent sleep. Sorry to keep you waiting, but that’s how it was. More »
Square Enix really knows how to impress an audience. At Tokyo Game Show, they featured four Kingdom Hearts trailers, one of which was the upcoming DS game: Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days.
The trailer featured various mind blowing teasers that included Organization XIII members, the return of Riku and Mickey, various ass kicking and a new character, Xion. The drama didn’t just stop there, at the end the words “February 2009” flashed leaving me completely thrilled and depressed. Note that this is first to be released in Japan leaving the rest of us non-Japanese speakers to wait it out in the cold.
Any basketball fans out there? Excited for the upcoming NBA season? I sure am – I’ve been saving my lunch money for one of those huge HDTVs and getting NBA League Pass from Comcast so I can watch every single NBA game from my room. Not that I don’t love the hometown Warriors, it’s just that after our star player Baron Davis decided to jump ship, I haven’t been… meh… the W’s are gonna suck this season. I wanna watch good games with good teams!
Which got me wondering – how many Asian players are currently on an NBA roster? You might have heard of Wang Zhizhi, the first Asian player in the NBA with stints on the Mavericks, Clippers, and Heat, or Yuta Tabuse, Japan’s (shorter) version of Michael Jordan who played sparingly with the Suns. Little-known Sean Chen made it as far as the Sacramento Kings’ preseason roster, but was cut at the end. Remember that huge guy in Rush Hour 3? 7’9” Sun Ming Ming has dabbled with the NBA as well. However, there’s only three currently on an NBA team roster – perennial all-star Yao Ming, second year player Yi Jianlian, and rookie Sun Yue. More »
DBSK/TVXQ member Jae Joong will star in a Korean-Japan joint drama called “Heaven’s Postal Delivery Man” with female counter part by Han Hyo Joo (Iljimae).
Jae Joong’s will play a mysterious postman (from Heaven) that delivers the messages from dead relatives/friends’ to the living. Han Hyo Joo will be a pure, innocent girl who has recently lost her lover, but hasn’t forgotten him. The two end up working together at the same job and slowly fall in love. How cliché.
There is a kissing scene where one of them (it’s not said who) says to the other “I want to kiss you” which is then followed by a romantic kissing scene. Sounds cheesy but I’m excited to see it since Jae Joong has rehearsed the drama seven times and his acting has been said to have improved significantly.
The series will be a “telecinema” (tv series and movie) made up of 7 different stories with “Heaven’s Postal Delivery Man” as the first. It will officially air in May 2009 on SBS.
Many people are very familiar with Tim Kang’s face from the various Home Depot and Cingular commercials he has done
Tim Kang is a very busy man these days popping into a dozen or so shows on t.v. I have seen him in the t.v. series Ghost Whisperer, Chappelle Show, Law and Order, Third Watch, and The Unit to name a few.
Tim Kang was born in San Francisco, California and he studied acting at Russia’s Moscow Art Theatre School. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Berkeley and a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Institute for Advanced Theatre Training at Harvard University
Tim Kang plays as agent Kendall Cho who works for the CBI, California Bureau of Investigation, alongside Simon Baker, the star of the new show The Mentalist. It comes on every Tuesday night at 9pm eastern on CBS. Tim Kang is a regular cast member of The Mentalist and that’s really good, because we need more Asian men beaming into American households on a regular basis. More »
Despite being leaked almost a month early all over the Internet, Jay Chou’s new album “Capricorn (魔杰座 Mó Jié Zuò)” has sold some 1 million copies in its first week. The President of Cpop has set a sales mark of 4 million for himself even though his 9th studio album has received lukewarm reviews.
Decide for yourself with these videos!
Jays’ official site has the video for “In A Single Moment (给我一首歌的时间 Gei Wo Yi Shou Ge De Shi Jian)”: http://www.jay2u.com/
Japanese duo capsule (カプセル) is readying their new album “More! More! More!” to launch another Asian assault on the European electronica stronghold. After massive chart success producing Perfume, Nakata Yasutaka reunites with vocalist Koshijima Toshiko with “JUMPER” out now. It’s a seven minute rhythmic epic of overdriven basslines, guitar distortion and syncopated vocals. B-side track is “the Time is Now”
“JUMPER” goes on sale November 11. “More! More! More” hits stores on November 19.
“More! More! More!” tracklisting: 1. runway 2. more more more 3. the Time is now 4. JUMPER 5. Phantom 6. gateway 7. Pleasure ground 8. the mutations of life 9. e.d.i.t. 10. Adventure More »
Ningin’s own NYAF cosplay contest had participants that came from anime, manga, video-games and original concepts. Our 2nd runner up Mimo Moore represents a part of this subculture facet takes it origins from Music. J-rock, Goth Rock, and Visual Kei inspire cosplay participants like Mimo to embrace the genres style and create amazing looks. Mimo Moore’s own creativity for the unique utilizes talent and imagination to form dramatic androgynous beauty.
Q: Was this your first time cosplaying? A: No, but this was my first anime con and I loved it!
Q: What are some of the things that first inspired you to cosplay? A: I’m actually very new to the world of cosplaying and didn’t know it even existed until I stumbled upon it a few months ago while surfing the net. Obviously anime was a huge inspiration, but what really convinced me to give it a try were some great photos I had seen on the net of “professional cosplayers.” They pretty much looked like models with a themed shoot, and I’m not new to the world of modeling. I’ve been a professional model for about 5 years now, and versatility has always been my strong point. Cosplaying seemed like a fun, creative way of combining all of my talents, skill, and experience without making it seem like a “job”, I truly enjoy it.
Q: How does cosplay relate to your career as a model? A: The two are amazingly intertwined. I’ve made some drastic changes when it comes to modeling in the past few months. I modeled almost exclusively within the American hip hop industry and now I’ve been doing mostly Visual Kei. It’s two completely different worlds and lifestyles, but I can relate to both of them. More »
I like to bitch about Asian celebs. I also like to eat. It’s like my mouth has to move constantly. There is also one thing that I do to keep my mouth busy but I will not divulge the details. Anyway, I am a big foodie especially when it comes to Asian food. I have quite a few great Asian eating establishments in Asia and North America that I would like to recommend to you so I will start doing it in a series of blog entries titled “Eating Good Asian Food In XXX”. This will help me fill my time when I don’t have a good reason to rip the Asian celebs apart.
The first restaurant on my recommendation list is a restaurant located in New York City that specializes in Szechuan Cuisine. Szechuan cuisine has become increasingly popular with the Chinese and Non-Chinese diners in recent years. Just take a walk down the famous 24-hr restaurant street in Beijing, Gui Jie (which literally means “Ghost Street”), and you will see every other restaurant there serving Szechuan style Hot Pot. The restaurants are packed even during the hot and humid summer days! More »
Another video for you guys. This week has been BoA’s US debut starting point and as fangirls we just have to point it out our way. The song “Eat you up” has really grown on me. However the music videos, well I only really like the dancing in the Asian version. This video blog expresses our feelings about the US MV. Sorry about our dry humor but we do this spontaneously. I’m not a director or an actor and lord knows I should never be one. Hope you enjoy! More »
One of the biggest entertainment companies in Japan, Johnny’s Jimusho is expanding their company to Korea. In the past few years there have been countless numbers of boy bands and groups coming from both Korea and Japan. Way too many, but apparently we need more! That’s why Johnny’s has decided to expand into Korea.
Popular Japanese groups such as ARASHI, KAT-TUN, and NewS have huge followings in Korea. ARASHI even has around 200,000 fans in Korea alone, and the numbers are quickly growing. Because of this, Johnny’s has announced that they will soon enter the Korean market.
They need to stop. Korea only has a few decent boy bands, like DBSK, Big Bang, and SHINee. Japan has… hardly any, except for ARASHI.
Here’s the continuation of my personal favourite list of tropes and cliches for Japanese console role-playing games.
107. Arbour Day Rule: At some point, you’re going to have to talk to a tree and do what it says.
For some reason, this struck me to be the most hilarious thing on the list. I think it’s the “Arbour Day” part that cracked me up the most.
128. First Law of Fashion: All characters wear a single costume which does not change over the course of the game. The only exception is when characters dress up in enemy uniforms to infiltrate their base.
129. Second Law of Fashion: Any character’s costume, no matter how skimpy, complicated, or simply outlandish, is always completely suitable to wear when climbing around in caves, hiking across the desert, and slogging through the sewers. It will continue to be completely suitable right afterwards when said character goes to meet the King.
130. Third Law of Fashion: In any futuristic setting, the standard uniform for female soldiers and special agents will include a miniskirt and thigh-high stockings. The standard uniform for all male characters, military or not, will include an extraordinarily silly and enormous hat.
These laws of fashion are true. I especially agree with the first two. However, I am unsure about the whole “extraordinarily silly and enormous hat” for the males.