Tag Archives | Japan

Quentin Tarantino Stars in Odd Japanese Commercial for Dog-Shaped Speakers (2009)

Well… I don’t really know what I expected.

Apparently this commercial features one of Japan’s most popular Ad Family, The Whites:

The father is a human in a dog’s body (for reasons “you’re too young to understand,” he once barked at his daughter), the son is a black American, and their maid is an alien incarnation of Tommy Lee Jones.

h/t Obscure Media on Reddit (by far the best subreddit).

Read the rest

Continue Reading

Japan’s McDonald’s Straws Are Designed to Mimic the Experience of Breastfeeding

Home Town Dolpa Nagoya 4: #23

In Japan, McDonald’s straws are specially designed to mimic breastfeeding. Yum.

via RocketNews24:

Thick and creamy, sipping on a McDonald’s shake can instantly bring back those feelings of happy contentedness you felt as a child, and in Japan part of the reason might be that the experience is designed to make you feel like a baby sucking down a meal of breast milk.

Read more here.

According to a book written by McDonald’s Japan founder Den Fujita (Den Fujita’s Business Strategies 2: Overwhelming Business Strategies):

When humans drink something, the speed that produces the most delicious feeling is the speed at which babies nurse…McDonald’s straws are designed so that when used with a shake, the speed will be the same as that of an infant drinking breast milk.

h/t Neatorama.

Read the rest

Continue Reading

Cute ‘Sea Bunnies’ Become Viral Sensation in Japan

Are you into sea slugs, nudibranchs and marine gastropods? Post your pictures now because “sea bunnies” are the latest craze in Japan, per the Telegraph:

A genus of sea slugs, nudibranchs and shell-less marine gastropods that resembles fluffy rabbits have become an internet sensation in Japan.

Native to the Pacific Ocean and found as far north as the cooler waters off Japan, the Jorunna genus of sea creatures have become a hit here since being dubbed “sea bunnies”.

Some of the sub-species can grow to 8 inches in length, but it is the tiny creatures what appear to have fluffy “coats” and delicate ears that have really triggered the fascination in Japan – a nation notorious for its love of “kawaii”, or “cute”.

Twitter user Iwabuchi expressed the feelings of many Japanese by posting photos of two sea bunnies and the message “Waaaa – velvet sea slug! Cute! I’ve fallen in love!”…

[continues at the Telegraph]

Read the rest

Continue Reading

End Times Canines


Whether your think artificial intelligence is fact or fiction, the beginning of a brave new world or the end of this one, for many of Japan’s robot dog owners, doomsday has already come in the form of the end of the production of their really remarkable canine companions. Here’s the lowdown from RT Daily News

AIBO pet dogs are the world’s first home entertainment robots with artificial intelligence (AI). They can speak, sense, and express their feelings – which encourages many owners to treat the toys as real family members. The gadgets are even known for developing their own unique personalities.

Many who bought the dog robots now feel abandoned by Sony, which canceled the production of AIBOs in 2006. The last tech clinic for the toys was closed in March 2014, creating a massive shortage of spare parts.

Sony sold more than 150,000 units between 1999 – when they were created – and 2006.Read the rest

Continue Reading

Princes of the Yen: Central Banks and the Transformation of the Economy

Can central banks create booms and busts by manipulating the money supply? Do they do this in order to create a public consensus for economic, political, and social change? Professor Richard Werner, a monetary and development economist at the University of Southampton, says they can do this, and that they are doing this. This is what the Bank of Japan did in the 80s and 90s, and that is what the European Central Bank is doing at this very moment.

The documentary “Princes of the Yen” reveals how Japanese society was transformed to suit the agenda and desire of powerful interest groups, and how citizens were kept entirely in the dark about this. Professor Richard Werner was a visiting researcher at the Bank of Japan during the 90s crash, during which the stock market dropped by 80% and house prices by up to 84%. He experienced first hand how actors inside the Bank of Japan deliberately adopted policies to further an agenda contrary to the interest of the majority of Japanese society.… Read the rest

Continue Reading

Take it and Like it: Corporate America and the Manipulation of Public Opinion

Brad Clinesmith (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Brad Clinesmith (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Absurd Illusions of a Shining City on a Hill by Mark Weiser at Dissident Voice:

The average natural born citizen in any country is continuously indoctrinated into the national culture starting about the time they begin understanding the meaning of words. There’s one country in particular where reality is staring the public in the face, but the truth has been grossly distorted for decades by government, and mass media, bias and propaganda. If the citizens would suddenly see the truth, instead of what they’ve been conditioned to believe, they would find themselves in a strange and bizarre foreign land that’s contrary in many ways to their personal beliefs regarding home. For those who experience this sudden revelation, as soon as the truth is realized, it’s likely to provoke a profound and immediate sense of disbelief. Like emergency room personnel making insensitive jokes, laughter at some point becomes a self-defense mechanism for offsetting continuous parades of the absurd realities and outright horrors.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Japanese Media, Psychedelic Yokai, and Graphic Novels

My cinematic graphic novel TRETA-YUGA—the sequel to my breakout success KALI-YUGA—is now live on Kickstarter. In light of this, I thought I’d note the ways in which Eastern lore has profoundly influenced my work in graphic novels.


From my original article at Reality Sandwich:

The Japanese have always had a distinct way of portraying supernatural encounters with otherworldly beings. The infiltration of J-horror into the stale domain of Hollywood was an early sign of amnesiac Westerners longing to learn of the old ways. Supernatural encounters with the other (often the demonic Yokai), in whatever horrific way they are experienced in media, is seen by the Japanese as a way of gleaning knowledge from forgotten ancestry and learning the delicate threads of fate. It is in these darkly psychedelic, shadow healing encounters with the Gods that mortals are forced to reconsider the meaning of time, matter, and being.

Scholar Noriko T.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Tomb of Jesus Christ: Shingo, Japan

Tomb of Jesus Christ Photo by vera46 on Flickr | Copyright: Creative Commons

Tomb of Jesus Christ
Photo by vera46 on Flickr | Copyright: Creative Commons

via Atlas Obscura [Follow the link to read the rest and see more photos]:

The small village of Shingo in Japan’s Aomori Prefecture is known not only for its cattle ranches and yam production, but thanks to one rogue cosmoarcheologist the village is also home to the supposed Tomb of Jesus Christ.

According to apocryphal religious writings known as the Takenouchi Documents, it was not Jesus who was crucified on that bloody Golgotha, but in fact it was his younger brother, Isukiri. After being captured by the Romans, it is said that Jesus escaped by switching places with his younger brother, taking only a lock of the Virgin Mary’s hair and one of his brother’s ears while he fled to Japan. After settling down in Shingo, Jesus is said to have had three children with a local woman before dying of natural causes at the age of 106.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Japan’s Decision on Collective Self-Defense in Context

Official U.S. Navy Page via Flickr.com

Official U.S. Navy Page via Flickr.com

This article was brought to my attention by a Disinfonaut via the Contact Page.

via The Diplomat:

On July 1, Japan passed a Cabinet decision that fundamentally changes the interpretation of war-renouncing Article 9 of its Constitution to allow the exercise of the right of collective self-defense.

Claimed to be part of Prime Minister Abe Shinzo’s doctrine of “pro-active pacifism,” the move stems from a correlation between Japan’s rising nationalism on the one hand, and joint U.S.-Japan efforts to strengthen their security cooperation on the other, as Washington and Tokyo are renegotiating their defense guidelines for the first time since 1997. The revised guidelines are due by year-end, with an interim report slated to be released next week.

Proponents say the Cabinet decision provides only for a “limited” expansion of Japan’s military capability overseas and allows for a strengthened U.S.-Japan cooperation that will make the Asia Pacific region more secure.

Read the rest
Continue Reading