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Featured image for No More Wars: the Edo Period’s Final RebellionsBackground image for No More Wars: the Edo Period’s Final Rebellions

No More Wars: the Edo Period’s Final Rebellions

After Japan was unified under Oda Nobunaga, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and finished with Tokugawa Ieyasu, the Tokugawa government declared there would be no more wars. The final war is…

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Featured image for Sugoi Summer – TokyoTreat Box ReviewBackground image for Sugoi Summer – TokyoTreat Box Review

Sugoi Summer – TokyoTreat Box Review

Ichigo, the parent company of SakuraCo and TokyoTreat, asked me to review a TokyoTreat box. If you aren’t familiar with TokyoTreat, it’s a monthly subscription service that sends…

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Featured image for The Nature of Online PiracyBackground image for The Nature of Online Piracy

The Nature of Online Piracy

You’ve most likely broken the law by downloading something illegally. In fact, more than an estimated 75% of computers have at least one illegally downloaded file, and 22%…

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Featured image for Shikimori’s Not Just a CutieBackground image for Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie

Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie

Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie addresses interesting themes. Let’s get to them! But first, the summary for those who haven’t seen the anime yet. Not Just a Cutie…

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Featured image for 11 Steps to Stop Being an IncelBackground image for 11 Steps to Stop Being an Incel

11 Steps to Stop Being an Incel

Incels, or involuntary celibates, are men with an unhealthy view of women and of life. Many, of course, would disagree with that statement. They view themselves as more…

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Interviews with Monster Girls, A Review

Interviews with Monster Girls follows a biology teacher named Tetsuo Takahashi as he teaches three demi (or demi-human) high-school girls. He also tries to understand them better, including…

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Featured image for Kaguya-Sama: Love is War Season 3Background image for Kaguya-Sama: Love is War Season 3

Kaguya-Sama: Love is War Season 3

Kaguya-sama: Love is War shares a lot of similarities with Seinfeld. Seinfeld made a fuss out of nothing, such as waiting to be seated in a Chinese restaurant.…

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Featured image for Kaguya-Sama: Love is WarBackground image for Kaguya-Sama: Love is War

Kaguya-Sama: Love is War

Kaguya-sama: Love is War shares a lot of similarities with Seinfeld. Seinfeld made a fuss out of nothing, such as waiting to be seated in a Chinese restaurant.…

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Featured image for Kaguya-Sama: Love is War Final SeasonBackground image for Kaguya-Sama: Love is War Final Season

Kaguya-Sama: Love is War Final Season

Kaguya-sama: Love is War shares a lot of similarities with Seinfeld. Seinfeld made a fuss out of nothing, such as waiting to be seated in a Chinese restaurant.…

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Basho’s Travel Memoir, “The Narrow Road of the Interior”

Matsuo Basho is known for his haiku, poetry consisting of 17 syllables divided into lines of 5, 7, and 5 syllables. However, he is also famous for his…

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Featured image for 5 Books Lovers of Japan Need to ReadBackground image for 5 Books Lovers of Japan Need to Read

5 Books Lovers of Japan Need to Read

The following list of books are must reads for those who are interested in Japanese culture, anime, and manga. This list focuses on important events and sections of…

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Featured image for Why Do I Write? A Personal PostBackground image for Why Do I Write? A Personal Post

Why Do I Write? A Personal Post

    I love books. As a kid, I’d devour every book I got my hands on, and I read far above my grade level. In fifth grade,…

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Featured image for Ancient Appreciation for Objects: A Lesson for Modern LifeBackground image for Ancient Appreciation for Objects: A Lesson for Modern Life

Ancient Appreciation for Objects: A Lesson for Modern Life

  Recently, I cleaned out my wardrobe. I pulled two large garbage bags of clothes to donate. I don’t need a month’s worth of clothes that I don’t…

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Featured image for Examining Animation: Marin’s EmbarrassmentBackground image for Examining Animation: Marin’s Embarrassment

Examining Animation: Marin’s Embarrassment

During one scene in My Dress-up Darling, Marin stands in a bikini while Wakana takes her measurements so he can make her cosplay outfits. At one point, Marin’s…

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Featured image for For the Love of the Hobby: How Not to be the BestBackground image for For the Love of the Hobby: How Not to be the Best

For the Love of the Hobby: How Not to be the Best

I feel the drive to be the best, or at least be good, at everything I do. Beyond being impractical–after all, no one can be good at everything…

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Eastern Wisdom in a Modern Context

The wisdom of Japan and China remains valuable for us today. Like the wisdom of Stoicism, we can look toward the past for lessons on how to live…

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Darwin’s Game

Darwin’s Game reverses the isekai premise: it brings the game into the real world. Kaname Sudo stumbles into the death game blindly and must learn how to survive.…

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Featured image for Can Anime Show Sexual Assault Ethically?Background image for Can Anime Show Sexual Assault Ethically?

Can Anime Show Sexual Assault Ethically?

A reader posed the question that serves as the title for the article, along with several other difficult and important questions. Long-time readers know I’ve addressed anime’s portrayal…

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Featured image for The Anime Community’s Best TraitBackground image for The Anime Community’s Best Trait

The Anime Community’s Best Trait

  Many anime fans feel like I often beat up on the community. I don’t really beat up on it as much as point out problem areas. The…

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Featured image for Manga Artists, Child Pornography, and the Influence of Manga, Part 2Background image for Manga Artists, Child Pornography, and the Influence of Manga, Part 2

Manga Artists, Child Pornography, and the Influence of Manga, Part 2

In the first part of this article, I examined the effects associated with pornography use, both child and adult, and how they encourage personality traits that can lead…

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Featured image for Manga Artists, Child Pornography, and the Influence of Manga, Part 1Background image for Manga Artists, Child Pornography, and the Influence of Manga, Part 1

Manga Artists, Child Pornography, and the Influence of Manga, Part 1

When I heard about manga artist Kenya Suzuki being arrested for importing child pornography, I began to wonder if there’s something about manga that encourages such behavior. Manga…

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Featured image for Akebi’s Sailor UniformBackground image for Akebi’s Sailor Uniform

Akebi’s Sailor Uniform

Akebi’s Sailor Uniform is a healing anime by CloverWorks, the same studio that produced the recent My Dress-Up Darling. The story follows Akebi as she joins an all-girls…

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My Dress-Up Darling

My Dress-Up Darling surprised me with its heart and layers. I watched it on a whim, expecting the usual tired ecchi nonsense, but I quickly connected with the…

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Impostor Syndrome

I suffer from Impostor Syndrome, and I am not alone. At least 70% of professionals report feeling Impostor Syndrome (IS) at some time during their careers (Gottlieb, 2020).…

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Featured image for Why are Incels, Neckbeards, and Others Attracted to Japan?Background image for Why are Incels, Neckbeards, and Others Attracted to Japan?

Why are Incels, Neckbeards, and Others Attracted to Japan?

Why is Japan the fantasy for the socially awkward? Why does its culture, its media, and its women receive so much attention from some online men? Since I’ve…

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Fact vs Truth in History

You’ve likely heard the phrase “history is written by the victors.” Because of this sentiment, historians feel skeptical about written histories sponsored by governments and winne…

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Featured image for Examining Animation: Marin’s SmileBackground image for Examining Animation: Marin’s Smile

Examining Animation: Marin’s Smile

In this article, I’ll attempt to show you an exercise I used to do when I was working on my animation undergraduate degree. The exercise has you take…

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Featured image for My Top Couples in AnimeBackground image for My Top Couples in Anime

My Top Couples in Anime

Long time anime fans have their favorite couples. I enjoy couples with dynamic dialogue. It doesn’t matter if they get together by the end of the series or…

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Featured image for Japanese Professional Wrestling: Strong StyleBackground image for Japanese Professional Wrestling: Strong Style

Japanese Professional Wrestling: Strong Style

Strong Style is the most common type of professional wrestling. It came from a disagreement in approach between the wrestlers Antonio Inoki and Shohei Baba. Inoki founded New…

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Featured image for Pythagora Switch on NHK is Strange But EnlighteningBackground image for Pythagora Switch on NHK is Strange But Enlightening

Pythagora Switch on NHK is Strange But Enlightening

Pythagora Switch is a children’s educational broadcast on NHK. It’s a strange, surreal program that runs for 5-15 minutes. Pythagora Switch refers to how the segment uses a…

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Featured image for Japanese Professional Wrestling: King’s Road StyleBackground image for Japanese Professional Wrestling: King’s Road Style

Japanese Professional Wrestling: King’s Road Style

Japanese professional wrestling has roots in American pro-wrestling. Many of the holds and brawling seen in early matches came from the various styles popular in the United States.…

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The Authentic Voices Shift in Publishing

Lately in publishing there’s been a push for authentic voices. Authentic voices are usually minority authors writing stories that concern their groups and perspectives. This is wonderful! I…

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Featured image for What was the Cost of Things in Japan During the Early 1900s?Background image for What was the Cost of Things in Japan During the Early 1900s?

What was the Cost of Things in Japan During the Early 1900s?

This seems like a strange question, but examining costs of items and salaries can offer interesting insights into history. I came across this information while I worked on…

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Featured image for Goodbye, Shika: The Gift of MourningBackground image for Goodbye, Shika: The Gift of Mourning

Goodbye, Shika: The Gift of Mourning

A few hours ago, as I write this, my cat Shikamaru died. He had developed FIPV, or Feline Infectious Peritonitis, an incurable and fatal viral infection. Shika was…

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Komi Can’t Communicate

Komi Can’t Communicate focuses on the perception and the challenges of having social anxiety. Komi is the most beautiful and popular girl in high school, but she suffers…

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Looking Back on 2021

I spend most of 2021 revisiting older anime. I have articles in the queue where I reexamine them. There wasn’t too many new titles that caught my attention.…

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Featured image for Pokemon Brilliant DiamondBackground image for Pokemon Brilliant Diamond

Pokemon Brilliant Diamond

Pokemon Brilliant Diamond remakes Pokemon Diamond on the Nintendo DS. I hadn’t played Diamond, so I went into Brilliant Diamond blind. This is my preferred way of playing…

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Featured image for The Ending of Cowboy BebopBackground image for The Ending of Cowboy Bebop

The Ending of Cowboy Bebop

[This post contains spoilers. I suggest you go watch Cowboy Bebop] When it comes to a classic story like Cowboy Bebop, what can I write that hasn’t been…

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Featured image for What Makes Anime, Anime?Background image for What Makes Anime, Anime?

What Makes Anime, Anime?

It used to be anime was animation from Japan. That was why in the old, pre-Internet days it was often called Japanimation. It was known for being stiff,…

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Featured image for Is Anime a High Art?Background image for Is Anime a High Art?

Is Anime a High Art?

Can we consider anime a high art? Before we can answer this question, we have to define what high art means. High art typically involves works of art…

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Featured image for The Experience of Rewriting Japanese Folklore for Modern ReadersBackground image for The Experience of Rewriting Japanese Folklore for Modern Readers

The Experience of Rewriting Japanese Folklore for Modern Readers

My work Tales from Old Japan: Folktales and Legends from the Land of the Rising Sun proved to be a 4-year writing challenge. It’s my most ambition project…

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Featured image for Anime’s Bad Story Telling HabitsBackground image for Anime’s Bad Story Telling Habits

Anime’s Bad Story Telling Habits

Anime has problems with its story telling habits. Habits we as fans often take for granted. It’s just how anime is, we say when we notice these problems.…

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The Saint’s Magic Power is Omnipotent

An isekei with a female lead? Sounds good! Unfortunately, The Saint’s Magic Power is Omnipotent has many interesting aspects, but suffers from a passive protagonist. Sei Takanashi sits…

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Featured image for What Was Happening in Japan When:Background image for What Was Happening in Japan When:

What Was Happening in Japan When:

Sometimes I struggle to keep a large picture view of history. When I’m researching or reading about a time period, I don’t think about what was happening elsewhere…

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Featured image for Kai Riu O, The Dragon King of the World Under the SeaBackground image for Kai Riu O, The Dragon King of the World Under the Sea

Kai Riu O, The Dragon King of the World Under the Sea

This week, we finish this folklore series with one more from William Griffis. This time we meet a dragon. As before, this version retains Griffis’s original text. I…

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Featured image for The Procession of Lord Long LegsBackground image for The Procession of Lord Long Legs

The Procession of Lord Long Legs

Let’s take a break from monsters and look at how insects are said to have lived in yet another of William Griffis’s collected tales from Japan. Lovely and…

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Featured image for Senbazuru: One Thousand Steps to Happiness, Fold by Fold by Michael James WongBackground image for Senbazuru: One Thousand Steps to Happiness, Fold by Fold by Michael James Wong

Senbazuru: One Thousand Steps to Happiness, Fold by Fold by Michael James Wong

Let’s take a break from folklore this week: Senbazuru: One Thousand Steps to Happiness takes a different perspective than most books I’ve read about mindfulness. It uses the…

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Featured image for Watanabe Kills the Great SpiderBackground image for Watanabe Kills the Great Spider

Watanabe Kills the Great Spider

This week continues spooky October with another Watanabe and Raiko monster adventure. You can find modernized versions of these and other stories in my compilation “Tales from Old…

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Featured image for Watanabe Cuts Off the Oni’s ArmBackground image for Watanabe Cuts Off the Oni’s Arm

Watanabe Cuts Off the Oni’s Arm

To celebrate October (one of my favorite months), I will be posting Japanese folklore in their original English versions. You can find modernized versions of these and other…

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Featured image for The Appeal of YashahimeBackground image for The Appeal of Yashahime

The Appeal of Yashahime

Yashahime excited me when I saw it debut. Inuyasha was one of my first exposures to anime. I enjoyed its exploration of folklore and the characters. Yashahime continues…

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