Miyazaki’s Quiet Protest of the Iraq War

I found this article on Cartoon Brew. I have always enjoyed Miyazaki’s social commentaries in his movies,  but his way of protesting the Iraq War was quite interesting. Also ,I knew Howl’s Moving Castle had that anti-war commentary attached to it, but I never thought it was a direct commentary of the Iraq War. I may need to re-watch it and do a retro-review…

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Hayao Miyazaki

by: Amid

Hayao Miyazaki didn’t come to the United States in 2003 to accept his Oscar forSpirited Away because of his opposition to the Iraq War, he recently told the LA Times:

“The reason I wasn’t here for the Academy Award was because I didn’t want to visit a country that was bombing Iraq. At the time, my producer shut me up and did not allow me to say that, but I don’t see him around today. By the way, my producer also shared in that feeling.”

Critic Daniel Thomas MacInnes offers some context to Miyazaki’s actions onThe Ghibli Blog:

It should be common knowledge to any serious Miyazaki scholar that he abhorred not only the Iraq War, but war itself. The idea of violence is depicted in his work as violent tragedy, slapstick mockery, or both…I don’t think very many Westerners know that the war in Howl’s Moving Castle was itself a reflection on the Iraq War. It was a comment on that war, viewed through the lens of Miyazaki’s long career.

90’s X-Men Animated Series: Japanese Intro…

I am huge fan of the 1990’s X-Men animated series. It is still the best cartoon X-Men out there (It’s out on DVD now!) I think the intro was classic:

However, after seeing the Japanese intro for the 90’s X-Men…

I kinda wish the 90’s X-Men looked like this. They even made another intro!

Can we get a special edition 90’s X-Men series set DVD and/ or Blu-Ray with selectable intros… PLEASE!

Transformers Kicks…

What other cartoon would inspire this?

niketransformers2niketransformers10Now I’m not a big shoe aficionado , so the design of the show doesn’t vibe with me too much (still pretty cool). BUT that BOX! GENIUS! 

Now that’s the true Art of the Cartoon.

Where can I pick these up? DO WANT!

PS: You know what would put these kicks over the top? If they actually transformed!!!

Set the VCR: Happy Birthday Lisa, from Bart and Michael Jackson…

2006257928018765212_rsYesterday was one of those surreal days. I think mostly everyone will remember the day Michael Jackson died. Combine this with the whirlwind of Farrah Fawcett passing away earlier in the day and Ed McMahon passing 2 days before that, it was just madness. I’m not even sure how they went through with an NBA Draft. Anyway, my dude jabok stated it best over twitter:

the worlds coming to an end. =(

A little overblown, but I think that was the general consensus. Now I know everyone is doing their little tributes and look backs to the “King of Pop” at the moment. It’s amazing really, MTV started to play music videos again… really! I’m going to ignore all the craziness and all the controversy surrounding the last few years of Michael Jackson’s life for the moment, and focus on this one touching moment in television animation history.

Hit the Jump to read more about this Set the VCR moment: Continue reading

Voltron: The SLR Camera! (1985)

I have a slew of reviews that should be upcoming (busy with school and work), so to break the monotony, I thought I would quickly post this:

In 1985, this came out…

voltroncam

It is a fully functional, transforming Voltron SLR –wannabe 110 film camera. Let me repeat in ALL CAPS and bold for emphasis. FULLY FUNCTIONAL AND TRANSFORMING VOLTRON SLR!

How come I didn’t know about this? And how do I get one now? I’m willing to switch from digital to 110 film (Do they even make 110 film anymore?)

Anyway. DO WANT!

From Gizmodo

The NEW Batman…

If you weren’t paying attention, Bruce Wayne is NOT Batman at the moment. After the 3 issue Battle For the Cowl storyline, there is a new Batman in town. Meet the NEW Batman:

Grayson_Batman

Don’t recognize him? Well the new Batman is… (drumroll) Dick Grayson, who was the first Robin:

grayson31

Of course, he eventually had a falling out with Bruce Wayne and became one of my favorite superheroes, Nightwing:

2008-11-02-nightwingMy Take: I think Dick Grayson was an obvious choice, however Dick Grayson was already Batman once, shortly after the Knightfall Series (BTW, Prodigal was an underrated storyline!!!) I think it’s pretty obvious that DC Comics will eventually give the mantle of Batman back to Bruce Wayne (Bruce is currently perceived to be dead, but is actually trapped in the past). But for this to work, DC needs to have Dick hold onto the mantle of Batman for at least a year. And they need to delve into the reasons why Dick decided to take up the mantle of Batman (because Battle for the Cowl did not address that!)

There is one last thing about Dick Grayson becoming Batman, I’m going to miss the eskrima sticks…

Beacon Hill Sound Transit Tunnel (Seattle)

Since I live in the Beacon Hill area of Seattle, and also I have been ducking and dogdging the construction of this thing for the past 4+ years, I thought I would mention the progress of the Beacon Hill Sound Transit Tunnel.

Below ia an artist’s rendering (read: cartoon!) of what the Beacon Hill Transit Tunnel is going to look like. 

beacon1beacon2beacon31beacon43

The contruction for this thing has been going on for what seems like forever. Newsflash, The Beacon Hill Transit Tunnel will look nothing like the cartoons up above.  Did the artist even visit Beacon Hill, or South Seattle when he did these concepts?

At least they look nice… ah to dream…

Iron Man: Armored Adventures

It took them a while to capitalize on the huge movie success of Iron Man. Here’s the trailer for the new upcoming animated series on NickToons.

Let’s be real, I’m not sure I’m sold on the Tony Stark as a teenager premise. It didn’t work for me when X-Men: Evolution turned most of the X-Men into teenagers attending a regular high school. If done right, like Batman Beyond or Next Avengers, where the original heroes were homaged and played a vital role, maybe it could’ve worked. But Tony Stark just doesn’t work as a 16 year old kid for me. Tony Stark needs to be Robert Downey Jr. 

I’ll actually watch some of this before I pass more judgement. I will say this though, it already seems better than the last Iron Man animated series.

Actually, based on that catchy theme song, I’m not too sure anymore.

“I…I….AM…IROOOON MAAA-A-AAAAN!” Don’t tell me that’s not catchy.

More research required definitely!

2Pac: Do For Love (Music Video)

While uploading my animation assignments to youtube yesterday, this random video popped up on the main screen. It was 2Pac’s “Do For Love” with Blackstreet. One of the forgotten posthumously released 2Pac songs, I remember this video back in 1997 and I thought it was a unique touch being all animation in getting around the fact that a live 2Pac wasn’t available (RIP Pac!). Still, I wasn’t too impressed with the animation back in 1997. In 2009, still not impressed, BUT now I do admire the fact that several animation techniques were used to produce this trippy video. 2D animation, 3D animation, claymation stop-motion, rotoscoping, among others came together to create something that, while not impressive in terms of animation, was still quite entertaining. Plus, no 2Pac music video ever looked like this:

“Do For Love”/ 2Pac/ 1997/ dir. ???

Listening back, I really do enjoy this song. It may find a rotation on my iphone. Plus, apparently according to wikipedia (so take this with a grain of salt),”Do For Love” actually rechopped J Dilla‘s production on a remix of the The Pharcyde‘s track Y? hmmm…..

Speaking of J Dilla, head over to my dude DJ Daps1 Thaswassup site. In preparation for his site getting to the 10,000 hit mark he has made available a Tribute Mixtape to J Dilla he made back in 2006. Congrats Bro! I’m not sure I’ll ever get to that mark. 

PS: Around the 3:07 mark in the video, where it was a mix of 2D and the 2Pac claymation, did that seem a little off to you? Maybe it was just me.