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AICN Anime Report: Big O; Dragon Ball; Hellsing; Outlaw Star; Utena; LoneWolf & Cub; and much more

Hey Guys Father Geek back once more with Scott Green and the AICN Anime Report for this week, but first...

I'm a member of the Dustrunners production team and I just wanted to submit some news about our sci-fi animated series to your site. I have also attached a promotional jpeg which you can post if you like. Thanks!

"Dustrunners is a new animated series coming to the web in the Fall of 2001. The show is currently in production at The Dustrunners Project, Inc. (an independent animation studio located in Ottawa, Canada) with a preview trailer available in late July/early August. Each episode will be 23 minutes in length and be available in variety of streaming sizes and formats from 180x100 Quicktime at 12 fps to the Large Format 640x360 Quicktime running at a smooth 24 fps.

Also a new contest has been announced:

" has launched a fantastic new game with a very special prize: the chance to be a criminal. Dustrunners is an animated series coming to the web this fall. It's about asteroid pirates. It's about government police forces. It's about dogfights and covert operations. And if you're clever, it can be about you. Six skilled players will actually become characters in the show. They will work with our ship and character designers to make their ideal personalities, and will be integrated into the story. How do you play? That's the tricky part. Visit for all the details."

David Belanger

That's all ol' Father Geek has this week... now on to Scott's column...

Dark Horse to Publish Astroboy

Dark Horse has confirmed for Newsarama that beginning in March of 2002, the publisher will repackage and release an English version of Osamu Tezuka's Astro Boy manga (comics). The format will be similar to the one they are currently using for Lone Wolf and Cub, more than 200 page black and white collections measuring 4.5"x7" retailing for $9.95. Tezuka's entire run will be reprinted.

Other Tezuka manga that is currently available in English is the medical adventure series Black Jack, and the World War II tale Adolf. Adolf is a tale of Adolf Hitler, Adolf Kaufman, a half Japanese/half German boy, and Adolf Kamil, a Jewish boy living in Kobe, Japan. I finished the reading the series this weekend, so I thought I would comment on it. The story takes Kaufman and Kamil from boyhood through adulthood. It's a unique perspective on World War II about people whose lives the war shaped even though they were not politicians and soldiers. It paints a realistic, and unflattering picture of the humanity. By the time the last Adolf dies in 1983 there are no heroes, and no one unscathed by tragedy, just a look at how the World War II effect these people who lived through it. True to Tezuka's style the characters appear in a very stylized, cartoonish manner, but rather than distracting from the story it adds to it by conveying the tremendous emotions the characters are going through,

It is collected across 5 volumes from Viz's Cadence Books imprint.

New Cowboy Bebop trailer online

A new trailer for the Cowboy Bebop movie: Knockin' on Heaven's Door can be seen at here. The trailer features new footage of the bounty hunters Spike Spiegel and Jet Black, self described "Gypsy" Faye Valentine, hacker Edward Wong Hau Pepelu Tivrusky 4th aka Ed, the hacker, and Ein the Welsh Corgie, as well as new characters Vincent and Electra.

The Cowboy Bebop movie takes place between episodes 23 and 24 of the television series.

Still no firm date for the Cowboy Be-Bop movie yet.

New Anime Movies Announced

According to AniHabara several new theatrical anime movies have been announced for Japanese release this winter, including Inuyasha, Sakura Taisen, Tottoko Hamutaro, Di Gi Charat, and Slayers Premium.

Inuyasha will be based on the popular current TV series adaptation of the Rumiko Takahashi manga of a half dog demon boy from Japan's Era of Warring States, and a modern school girl. It is expect to be released in January 2002. Viz announced that they had acquired the rights to the Inu Yasha television series at recent anime expo.

Sakura Taisen will be an original story set in Tokyo during the same time period as the Sakura Taisen 3 game occurs in Paris. The Sakura Taisen (Wars) series is a steam-tech alternate history series about physically endowed girls who pilot mecha based on a series of video game RPGs.

Di Gi Charat will get its own first theatrical feature this winter. The short Di Gi Charat movie will be part of a triple feature with Slayers Premium and the Sakura Taisen movie. The Di Gi Charat Summer Vacation Special will air on August 2nd and 3rd on TBS. DigiCharat was a hyper-pacing series of anime shorts based on the gear haired cat-girl suit wearing mascot of the Gamer's store chain.

Tottoko Hamutaro will get it's first theatrical film this winter. Hamutaro is a popular children's program about the lives of pet hamsters when their owners are away.

Slayers Premium will be an original 30 minute long film featuring the Slayers TV series cast including not only Lina but also Goury, Zelgadis and Amelia in their first theatrical appearances. The story involves the gang visiting a town cursed with fried octopus that makes whoever eat it able to speak only octopus language. The protagonist of the Slayers series is Lina Inverse, a young and destructive sorceress with a love of food and money. Her partners are an air headed swordsman, Goury, a sullen, stone complexioned chimera swordman/shaman, Zelgadis, and an energetic, and overzealous protector of justice, Amelia. The previous Slayers movies has featured Lina's busty, and mentally dense sick-kick Naga the White Serpent. Slayers Premium will be double-billed with the Sakura Taisen and Di Gi Charat movies. The Slayers TV series, movie, and OAVs tend to bounce between light, humorous events (tracking down dragons to eat, magic karaoke, traveling with aged people who think t! hey are Power Ranger-esque knights) and more dramatic, action drive stories with occasionally humor moments (fighting off demonic lords). The movie sounds like it will be an entry in the former category.

Amano Posters Ship This Week

DC Comics will be releasing two posters of Superman and Batman by Yoshitaka Amano, whose anime work include Vampire Hunter D, Angel's Egg, and Amon Saga. Amano is probably best known for his work as character designer of many of the Final Fantasy game. The posts ship this week for $7.95 each.

Anime on TV News

Mon Colle Knights and Digimon season 3 ("Digimon Tamers") are headed to Fox. Mon Colle Knights starts July 21st and apparently is 1 hour long according to

Kids WB' on Saturday made a special promo for the 3 part Cardcaptor Event, of who will get the Clow Cards - Li or Sakura? The beginning of the 3 Part Cardcaptors Event will start next Saturday at a special time, 10:30 eastern, 9:30 central and pacific times. Thanks to Gatekeeper2150 for the information

JoJo's Bizarre Adventures set for US release

From the press release: Super Techno Arts and Synch-Point will co-produce both "JoJo's Bizarre Adventure" OVAs for US release. Super Techno Arts is a subsidiary of APPP, the studio that animated "JoJo's Bizarre Adventure," based on a long running manga by Hirohiko ARAKI in Shonen Jump.

Synch-Point will be doing the translation for subtitle & voice-over, casting, and the recordings of the English voice-over. Super Techno Arts will handle post-production. Distributed by Super Techno Arts & Digital Manga.

Sample footage of JoJo's will be shown at the Digital Manga's OmochaBox/Digital Manga booth (Booth #1335) at San Diego Comic Con. Autographed shikishi (Japanese sign boards) by character designer will be available at the OmochaBox booth.

Viz Increases Size of Dragon Ball Manga

According to Planet Namek starting with this month's issue of Dragon Ball (the Dr. Slump crossover) and next month's issue of DBZ, Viz's monthly issues of our beloved manga will have 3 chapters apiece, instead of two, bringing the page count to roughly 48 pages per issue. However, the price will remain the same, at $2.95.

David Mack Interview

Its not anime, but Pop Culture Shock has posted an interview with "Kabuki" creator David Mack with new information about an animated project based on the comic series "The bulk of it is combining Circle of Blood, Skin Deep/Metamorphosis together. To tell you the truth, it has all the books in it, little bits, but the driving force of the story is the Skin Deep/Metamorphosis mixed with the Circle of Blood." "The plan is for a theatrical release."

The full interview can be read at here

Why Did Asamiya Move?

Newsarma has an article about why manga artist Kia Asamiya may be moving to the US with information from C.B. Cebulski.

"In his opinion, the biggest advantage to moving is creative freedom," Cebulski said. "He has had gotten sick of a lot of the editorial constraints placed upon him in Japan. He had achieved the status in Japan where nobody told him what was right or wrong anymore, he was allowed to do what he wanted within the context of having everything in on time and using these specific characters, per se, but they never told him that he should anything differently." The full article can be read on Newsarama. The full article can be read at here

Wizard's Top 50 Anime Story Date: 7/14/01
  • 1 Akira
  • 2 Original Mobile Suit Gundam
  • 3 Star Blazers: the Quest for Iscandar
  • 4 Ghost in the Shell
  • 5 Princess Mononoke
  • 6 Dragonball Z: TV Series
  • 7 Neon Genesis Evangelion
  • 8 Robotech: the Macross Saga
  • 9 Urusei Yatsura 2: Beautiful Dreamer
  • 10 Astroboy 30th Anniversary Collector's Series
  • 11 Ninja Scroll
  • 12 Kiki's Delivery Service
  • 13 Perfect Blue
  • 14 Tenchi Muyo
  • 15 Galaxy Express 999: the Signature Edition
  • 16 Fist of the North Star: the Series
  • 17 Ranma 1/2: the TV Series
  • 18 Revolutionary Girl Utena
  • 19 Grave of the Fireflies
  • 20 Vampire Hunter D
  • 21 Cowboy Bebop
  • 22 Dagger of Kamui
  • 23 Giant Robo
  • 24 Riding Bean
  • 25 Blue Submarine No. 6
  • 26 .The Castle of Cagliostro
  • 27 Sailormoon: the Series
  • 28 Oh My Goddess!
  • 29 Royal Space Force: Wings of Honneamise
  • 30 The Vision of Escaflowne
  • 31 Wicked City
  • 32 Gatchaman
  • 33 The Original Voltron Defender of the Universe
  • 34 Patlabor the Movie I
  • 35 Samurai X
  • 36 Devil Man
  • 37 Street Fighter II: the Animated Movie
  • 38 Trigun
  • 39 Gigantor Retrospective 30
  • 40 Fatal Fury
  • 41 Kimba the White Lion
  • 42 Roujin Z
  • 43 Bastard!!
  • 44 The Original Dirty Pair
  • 45 Speed Racer: the Movie
  • 46 Cardcaptor Sakura/Cardcaptors
  • 47 Pokemon
  • 48 The Guyver
  • 49 Golgo 13 the Professional
  • 50 Area 88

    LA Times article on AX

    The LA Times ran an article about Anime Expo here

    Other ADV Acquisitions

    A few new ADV titles were missed in last week's posting.

    You're under Arrest Mini Series Goemon - Legend of the Mystical Ninja TV Series

    Also, the Dirty Pair OVAs aquired are as follows:

    Dirty Pair - Affair of Nolandia

    Dirty Pair - Project Eden

    Dirty Pair - 005 Conspiracy

    The new Urotsukidoji series is 13 episodes long. ADV is negotiating for an uncut/unedited release of the first two seasons of the original Sailor Moon.

    Jonathan Clements expands on Manga UK

    From an e-mail from Jonathan Clements to Anime News Network: "Just to clarify, MANGA UK isn't dead. As I say, however, it is now little more than a logo on videos/DVDs released by Palm Pictures. What *is* dead is the time when the UK MANGA ENTERTAINMENT actively sought out Japanese material, dubbed it, in the UK, and exported it to the US. There was a time when it could be argued that MANGA US was a subsidiary of MANGA UK. Roles were reversed some time ago, and any MANGA ENTERTAINMENT anime released in the UK are now sourced, bought, translated, and dubbed by American staff, then distributed in the UK by Palm Pictures. The departure of Rod Shaile is merely a more obvious sign of this ongoing state of affairs."

    Manga DVD's and Other Projects

    Manga explained at their Anime Expo panel that the DVD release of Giant Robo will be a box set release. Gunbuster will be released sub only. Fist of the North Star will begin again from volume 7 and continue until their 39 episode contract is met.

    Anime Voice Talent on Final Fantasy X

    Unlike previous Final Fantasy video games, Final Fantasy X will add voices to the characters, including some anime talents. Tidus- Kazunari Morita (Zell, FF8 Ending motion capture) Yuna- Mayuko Aoki (Rinoa, FF8 Ending motion capture) Seymour- Junichi Suwabe (Kouji Fujiyoshi, GTO) Lulu- Rio Natsuki (Nanami Jinnai, El Hazard, Lina of Bubblegum Crisis 2040, Kanzaki Akari of Battle Athletes Victory) Kimahli- Katsumi Chou (Drug dealing bartender, Cowboy Bebop episode#1) Auron- Hideo Ishikawa (Ryuma, Shin Getter Robo) Cid- Kouichi Sakaguchi (Arbok, Pokemon) Rikku- Marika Matsumoto (Coca Cola CM, Bomb Magazine)

    ADV Label For Announced Urotsukidoji

    On Anime on DVD's Forum David Williams of DVD responded to question on whether Urotsukidoji, an adult series, would be released as part of their ADV Films Label. "As many of you already know, adult material is not part of the ADV Films label. Unfortunately an adult program, Urotsukidoji, was mistakenly listed as part of the ADV Films catalogue when in fact, that program is part of an entirely different company label. In addition, other programs intended for labels other than ADV Films were also included on the ADV Films web site. Fans are encouraged to remain attentive for information concerning the release of Urotsukidoji and the other programs under their proper labels. We apologize for this inadvertent editorial error." When another user,MegaZone, asked

    " How many imprints does ADV have now anyway?

    ADV Films; SoftCel; Rubbersuit; AnimeTrax (w/TRSI)

    Anything I'm forgetting?"

    Williams responded wit: " Yes, or maybe not forgetting, maybe you just don't know all of them."

    Report on Bandai At Sony Metreon

    Andrew Tei has posted a report on Bandai's Gumdam showings at the Sony Metreon on Anime on DVD's forum at here

    Orphen Episode Distribution Change

    ADV has changed the episode distribution of the DVD release of Orphen. The first two discs in each series had three episodes on them, but the final four discs will all have five episodes each, bringing each series in at six discs

    Ranma DVD Info

    Dallas Middaugh, the Director of Sales and Marketing at Viz mentioned on Anime on DVD's forum that November is the target for the first season of Ranma 1/2 in the seasonal box set format. Street date and price information is being finalized for an announcement that should be coming soon

    October Manga From Dark Horse

    Dark Horse comics has announced their October releases. A new trade paperback collection of 3x3 Eyes, entitled Flight of the Demon will be released. "The collected editions of the manga horror/action epic finally continue! From a hidden world in the Tibetan highlands comes Pai, a strange and beautiful girl with a difference: three eyes and three hundred birthdays behind her! Sent to Tokyo by a dying anthropologist, Pai must find his son, Yakumo, to help her in her quest... to become human! But when Pai merges Yakumo's soul with that of her immortal supernatural familiar to save his life, the urgency of their mission becomes even greater as Yakumo fights to reclaim his own humanity. Pai and Yakumo discover the existence of a statue that may help end their quest, but to obtain it they'll have to take on the dwellers in the dark, who need the statue to revive a dread demonic lord and bring about an inhuman kingdom of immortal evil!"

    Issues 61 of Blade of the Immortal is the fourth and final chapter of "Secrets" . Hyakurin and her assistant Shinriji got to visit Master Sori, the artist and ninja, and a mutilated Manji.

    A Gunsmith Cats special will feature the return of Rally, Minnie-May, and Misty going after a call girl with a carload of cocaine. Dark Horse also points out "Check out next month's Previews for the debut of Kenichi Sonoda's brand-new action-packed manga series, Exaxxion!"

    Lone Wolf and Cub Volume 15: Brothers of the Grass marks the passing the of the series halfway point. "Watch as Ogami Itto, the Lone Wolf, comes face-to-face with his arch-enemy, Yagyu Retsudo, in a tale of dark ambition and political intrigue. Witness the tragic tale of the Women of Sodeshi. Stalk alongside a deep-cover ninja as he chases his brother who has fled his station, while a group of shadow warriors prepare for a suicide mission to find a secret gold mine - guarded by the Lone Wolf!" The cover will be by Bill Sienkiewicz.

    Dark Horse comics will also be releasing 1/6 scale figures of Ogami Itto and Yagyu Retsudo. " Ogami Figure - This is the main character of the saga. He comes complete with a detailed wheeled cart and Daigoro ("Cub") figure, cloth banner with calligraphy, costume accessories (sandals, hat, cloth costume, etc.), and all the swords and other samurai weapons we see in the story, and is highly articulated.This figure stands 12" tall. Ogami Figure . Yagyu figure - This character is Ogami's adversary and started the events that led to Ogami's journey of revenge and redemption. This figure is similarly detailed, both in terms of its articulation and handcrafted fabric costume. It comes with cane, sandals, and detailed weaponry. This figure stands 12" tall. Yagyu figure .

    Only 500 figures total have been produced for world distribution. Our allotment is only 200 figures, so allocation may occur. Dark Horse special - While supplies last! Each figure ordered on this initial solicitation will come with a previously unavailable hardcover, foil-stamped edition of Lone Wolf & Cub #1. Each copy also contains a bookplate featuring Lone Wolf & Cub and is personally autographed by creator Kazuo Koike."

    Oh My Goddess Part XI #3 is part 1 of 8 of "Mystery Child". The Almighty summons Urd and Skuld back home to investigate a problem with the universe's time management program, which leaves Keiichi alone with Belldandy.

    A collection of Seraphic Feature will bee released "In the not-too-distant future, an intact alien starship has been discovered buried beneath the moon's surface, a vessel with awesome technology somehow connected to three powerful "Emblem Seeds" found on Earth. Sunao Oumi, a young man stuck on the moon and trying to work up the funds to return to Earth, takes an assignment to escort two visiting U.N. investigators and is drawn into a web of violence and intrigue as dark operatives try to purloin the Emblem Seeds the investigators have brought with them. But the investigators are more than they seem: Attim M-Zak, a beautiful and mysterious woman with deadly augmented abilities, and Kei, a starry-eyed dreamboat from Sunao's past...whose death brought Sunao to the moon in the first place!"

    Issues 17 of the anthology Super Manga Blast will feature "Club 9: Country-girl Haruo finds her way through a maze of nightclubs to the door of Club 9, only to have to deal with the club's drama-queen owner, and the chance to meet her favorite cartoonist (and wait'll you see who it is)! Shadow Star: Shiina attends the funeral of her father's wingman, and her friend Akira is visited by a stranger asking about Shiina's shadow dragon! Seraphic Feather: The murderous Guardian has Sunao and Kei cornered, and even Sunao's psychic powers aren't enough to stop it. But when Kei's powers come to life the results are devastating! What's Michael?: The mysterious and hilarious antics of cats continue, as Michael the cat lives on the edge (literally)! 3x3 Eyes: Pai and Yakumo search China for clues to find Pai's homeland, and discover other people with similar goals. "It's five series for the price of two," SMB! is still one of the best deals in comics - check it out!"

    Utena Movie DVDInfo

    Anime on DVD has learned the authoring house that is working on the Revolutionary Girl Utena Movie DVD has indicated that the release should be progressive. For advocates of progressive encoded anime, this will only make a gorgeous disc even more of a stunner.

    DVD Dates

    ADV has listed a new release date on the forum this evening, giving Sorcerer Hunters Vol. #4 (of 4) a date of 10/09/2001. This disc is the final six episodes of the series, bringing in the entire 26 episode series in only four discs. ADV also announced a 9/25 date for volume 3 of Nadia. ADV has given a street date of 10/02/2001 for Blue Seed Vol. #4, the final volume of the TV series, which contains 6 episode, and four humorous, shorts called omake.

    Pioneer has set a 9/4 release date for Niea_7 Vol. #2 and for Hand Maid May Vol. #2. Both volumes run 75 minutes and retail for 29.99$.

    Animation museum expects to draw big profits

    Comic Geek points out according to this article The Mitaka City animation museum is set to open its doors in October. Mitaka City expects to have 800,000 visitors during the fiirst 12 months and 600,000 annually, generating a ¥600 million profit through admission fees. Hayao Miyazaki, who directs animated films, was chosen by city officials to develop and illustrate a new symbol with a design representing the Mitaka community. Using this symbol, the city will develop projects at the museum. The animation museum is located in Inokashira Oncho Park, which is one of the most popular spots in Mitaka City. Accordingly, city officials anticipate that it will help revitalize the community. Popular characters, such as "Totoro," are scheduled to be exhibited at the museum. Animated character collectibles, originally designed by Miyazaki, will be sold only at ! the museum, and appear likely to become popular items at the facility.

    Real Bout High School Anime

    Real Bout High School will also become an anime series as previously announced. Character designs will be by Keiji Goto (Gatekeepers) and it will be produced by Gonzo (Blue Sub No.6, Vandread, Gatekeepers). It will be released for cable broadcast first.

    Outlaw Star returns to Toonami

    Starting Monday, July 16 @5:30PM, Outlaw Star returns to Toonami. Outlaw Star received approximately two thirds of the more than 150, 000 votes sent in a recent poll to pick what show would return to Toonami.

    Toonami on Kids WB

    Publicity on Kids WB stating, "be on the lookout for Toonami. Coming soon," have started to appear. Toonami starts on Kids WB on July 30th . However, according to CNX Toonami Revolution titles such as Dragonball, Sailor Moon and Outlaw Star will not be appearing on Kids WB, the only Anime Kids WB viewers can look forward to are Cardcaptors and Pokemon.

    Urban Vision News

    Urban Visions announced Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust dominated the panel. UV premiered a new theatrical trailer for VHD: Bloodlust and announced the movies opening date: August 24th at the Egyptian Theatre in LA. A new website will go online in Mid July.

    New Anime Announced

    The popular action/horror manga Hellsing, which premiered in 1998, is scheduled to become a late night TV anime series produced by Gonzo Studios, to premier on October 13th. A limited edition 20 minute long preview DVD will go on sale in Japan on October 3rd at a retail price of 3500 yen.

    Anime Based Video Games

    Yoshiharu Sato, character designer for Romeo's Blue Skies and Dog of Flanders, and animation supervisor on My Neighbor Totoro, will be providing the character designs for a Playstation 2 adventure game from Taito tentatively titled Rakugaki RPG. According to The Magic Box, "In the game you can give life to rakugaki (graffiti) by drawing them with the angel's pen. The ability of the rakugaki changes when you use different color and pen strokes, it can also grow stronger and learn new abilities by battling with other characters." The game is scheduled for release in December, at 6800 yen.

    Marvelous Entertainment will release the GameBoy Advance anime adventure game Love Hina: The Blessing Bell in Japan on September 7, for 5800 yen. Japanese Game Boy Advanced Games are playable on an American GBA, but the game is likely to have a great deal of Japanese text.

    According to Madman Cafe Impress GameWatch has released a demo of Gainax's upcoming "Ayanami Growth Project" PC game. The demo plays for a turn of one month, with full functions except for Saving, Loading, and BGM. Two versions are available; no voices (61MB) and voices (121MB). For the demos, check the site's section. The program my require a Japanese OS It can be downloaded here As an employee of NERV, the player's role is to "educate" Rei Ayanami by planning out her schedule, week by week. The game takes place for one year, in which the player can raise Ayanami to their desire, such as make her into a character of bright personality, make her into a juvenile delinquent, or make her love the player. Numerous events are prepared in the game, some events with different graphics depending on the condition of Ayanami. Over 30 endings are available, allowing for numerous replays. "Neon Genesis Evangelion -Ayanami raising project" -a Windows95/98 compatible game, was scheduled for release on 5/18, priced 8800 Yen.

    Check out this and tell me there isn't something wrong with the people at Gainax.

    Based on the success of the One Piece Grand Battle 3D fighting game for the Playstation released earlier this year, Bandai will release a new One Piece 3D RPG titled "From TV Animation One Piece: Let's Go Pirates!" on August 2 at 5800 yen. One Piece is an action pirate show that is popular in Japan, but no one has current announced it for a US release.

    Miyazaki Announces His Retirement Again

    Japanese newspaper Sports Nippon has reported that 60 year old Hayao Miyazaki has hinted that after his current feature Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi he will be retired. His age has made it difficult to keep up with his own standards for his work. Simular statements were made after the completion of Mononoke Hime.

    On July 10, a press conference and a test screening of "Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi" was held in Tokyo. Pictures can be seen at here. At the press conferense Miyazaki reiterated that it is now physically impossible to direct films.

    Getter Robo Release Problem

    Anime on DVD has learned that there is some confusion going on with this week's release of Getter Robo Vol. #1. While information is still being checked at the ADV offices, it looks like some Getter Robo Vol. #1 releases actually have the Getter Robo Vol. #2 images on them, while all the wrappings are Vol. #1. ADV is aware of the problems and is looking into the matter

    Crayon Shinchan Coming?

    A report on Vegita EX states that at the Shoujo-Con conventions's "It it Shoujo?" panel: "Matt Davidson from ADV FIlms confirmed that "Crayon Shin-Chan" has been licensed for a domestic, dubbed, TV airing. Thirteen episodes have already been dubbed. Matt provided no further details as to who's dubbing it, editing levels, or what network will air it, although he said that ADV is not involved." There is not Matt Davidson at ADV, the name is incorrect, but there has been some suggestion that Crayon Shinchan may be coming to domestic television. The series has been running on Hawaiian television.

    New Dragon Ball Date

    Saiyanz Rage has learned from a Toonami representative that they are aiming for Monday, August 20th date for the debut of Dragon Ball, the prequel to Dragon Ball Z. The show will air at 5:30pm.

    New Anime Magazine Coming

    The makers of Gamer's Republic are gearing up for Anime Republic. Sample issues were given out at Anime Expo. "We're staring at a mid-September launch and we're hoping for the full support of ALL otakus around the U.S. for our brave new project. Our plan: revolutionize the anime market, starting with the first glossy page of our premiere issue."

    "We are currently laying out the "Talk" section and need some more READER MAIL. Be it positive or negative, we want to hear your opinions. So please forward any and all comments to my e-mail address below. We would also LOVE to receive some FAN ART as well (you can e-mail digital images or snail mail original artwork to the address below). The deadline for our first issue is August 23." Mail can be sent to

    Spotlight: Big O Volume 1

    According to the text interview on the DVD of the first four episodes of Big O, the aims of the series creators seems to have been a) create a series that would spawn the requisite number of toys b) create a series to live out the fantasy of a giant robot engaging is destructive combat in a Gotham-esque city c) create a giant robot with a more orgainic shaped chest than the Gundam block. The result is something extremely watchable, and very creative at times.

    Paradigm looks a great deal like the Gotham of Batman the animated series. Art deco buildings, classic cars, trains. 40 years ago, an event robbed the inhabitants of Paradigm city of their memories. Society recovers. People turn on the electricity, and rediscover how to operate the machines around them. Advanced humanoid androids and giant robots baffle all but the greatest minds. The elderly morn there lost memories, and their lost children, but few others paid morn the past, but they fear what the unknown paths bellow the city hold, and are uncertain what the motives are from the Paradigm cooperation, that rules the city from above.

    Roger Smith is The Negotiator. Formerly a military police officer, he now convinces people for hire. He negotiates terms with hostage takers, he convinces an elderly holdout that if she moves her son will still be able to find her through residential registries. He also pilots the giant robot Big O, a rare carry over from before memory was last. Many have pointed out Roger Smith is Batman/Bruce was and part James Bond, and maybe part Batman/James Bond parody. He can slight out of bindings with lighting speed, and fire off a grappling hood while falling out a window. He has great gadgets, and a long, sleek black car with all the spy amenities. Other the other hand Smith's hand to hand combat skills are suspect, he seems to get knocked about outside his Big O. He's subtly image conscious, always ready with a comb to fix his hair. He makes odd rules such that everyone in his household must wear only black (down to his black bathrobe), and his butler may only interrupt ! him if its on behalf of an attractive young woman. His skills as a negotiator are likewise unremarkable. In the volumes's four episode we don't see him resolve any series confrontations without physical force, though this may be due to the series' time constraints rather than a character flaw.

    Perhaps the series' best feature is Smith's sidekick, R. Dorothy Wayneright., an android who Roger negotiates the release of, who later hires him to protect her, and joins his household. She combines a very dry sense of humor (after being ungallantly asked by Smith to draw some gun fire by using her faster than human speed, she obliges him, but later informs him that he's a louse), with some very odd mannerisms (a great scene shows her playing jazz piano, bobbing her head, but with a robotic stare, a lack of expression on her face).

    The style of the series is close to Batman: The Animated Series. Its noir with dark environs, jazzy background music, and plenty of voice overs. It's a welcome change from the crushing angst that seems to invade many modern giant robot series. The city is very stylish from giant office complexes with trains that go up hundreds of floors, to upscale piano bars, to seedy speak easies, to the shattered under-city. Its makes the series very interesting too look at .

    The first four episodes were entertaining. It did not fall into the trap of creating a countdown to the giant robot fight. It made the giant robot fights a component of the series rather than its highlight. Robert Smith, Dorothy, and the supporting cast would be engaging enough to support the series on dialogue alone. It seems to be introducing religious and social themes, but it is hard to tell if it going to try for something deeper than the surface entertainment value.

    Bandai has release the first volume of the series with four episodes. The first two episode introduce Paradigm, Smith, Dorothy. The third episode introduces a feme fatale named Angel, who shares a mission with Smith, or uses Smith for part of her mission. The forth episode introduces the mystery of the city bellow Paradign.

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