Review: Outlaw Star

From the Western World to the Land of the Rising Sun, Star Wars ushered in a collective cultural love of space fantasy. But it was arguably Leiji Matsumoto who popularised the look and feel of action orientated sci-fi in the Japanese consciousness with Space Battleship Yamato, Space Pirate Captain Harlock and Galaxy Express 999. It’s no exaggeration to say that Takehiko Ito’s Outlaw Star manga … Continue reading Review: Outlaw Star

Anime appropriation: hip hop, house and virtual bands

Anime and hip hop are unlikely bedfellows; both borrow from sundry sources, putting existing pieces together to form something fresh. Hip hop, as well as sampling music from myriad other styles, absorbs pop culture in its fusion of social commentary, political allegory and spirituality. Despite vastly different origins, intentions and methodology, there are definite cultural similarities between the spheres of hip hop and anime. Each … Continue reading Anime appropriation: hip hop, house and virtual bands

Mech suits, starships and space cowboys: Star Wars’ influence on manga and anime

Before Star Wars even landed in Japan, there was already pornographic manga of Luke, Leia and co. in open circulation. The films’ advertising publicity supervisor, Charles Lippincott, and star Mark Hamill arrived in the East for a press tour. There they stumbled across a few choice manga and brought them back for boss-man George Lucas as a bit of a giggle. But they hadn’t counted … Continue reading Mech suits, starships and space cowboys: Star Wars’ influence on manga and anime