Tag Archives: anime

Merchandise Review: Ascii Media Works 20th Anniversary Dengeki Heroines Figure Collection

18 Apr

Exclusive to Dengekiya’s online shop, The Ascii Media Works 20th Anniversary Dengeki Heroines Figure Collection is a set of 20 miniature figurines, manufactured by Toy’s Works to celebrate 20 years of Ascii Media Works with 20 of anime’s most beloved heroines.

Promotional Image of all 20 Heroines

Promotional Image of all 20 Heroines!

The set’s contents are an impressive line-up of chibi beauties who have spawned massive fan followings  over the past two decades.  Holo, Osaka,  Hoi-Hoi, Taiga and Kirino were enough to convince me I just couldn’t  live without it!

Box in a box...

Box in a box…

The set arrived very well packaged… this was what was inside of the initial shipping box.

...in a box...

…in a box…

Inside of the heavy cardboard box was a thin white and red cardboard box.

...in a box!

…in a box!

…and inside of that box was the final box, which houses the figures.

AmiBlog Preview

This is another promotional image that was posted to AmiBlog. See the orange and gold Chiyochichi on top of the box? Both were event exclusives, so if you ordered from Dengekiya’s online shop like I did, you didn’t receive them with your set.

Continue reading

A Handy Dandy Guide to Doujin Goods! 「同人グッズについて」

7 Aug
Doujin Goods

A pile of things I wish were mine. (Source)

C82 is coming up, so I decided to make a quick post that will hopefully be of use to some of you who want to buy doujinshi but need a little bit of help with the process of finding out what you want. If you’re looking at doujinshi or doujin goods, but you don’t know a whole lot of Japanese, there’s some terms you’ll want to know to make buying easier!

All Full Color オールフルカラー – Or simply Full Color フルカラー Means the book is printed entirely in color. Unless stated otherwise in this manner, doujinshi usually contain primarily black and white pages and a full color cover.

Clear Poster

A couple of Di Gi Charat clear posters. (Source)

Clear Poster クリアポスター – It’s a poster, but it’s clear! These are sturdy posters printed on translucent plastic. They look really great when you put them in front of a window and let the light shine through! It’s also really common to find クリア下敷き “Clear Shitajiki” which are pencil boards, but they’re essentially miniature clear posters!

Copy Books

A stack of copy hon by Studio UNILABO. (Source)

Copy Hon コーピー本 – “Copy Book”. This refers to a book that is photocopied and usually stapled or folded together. These are low-cost doujinshi (usually about 100 yen) that often contain comics or sketches. It can also be an orihon.

Dakimakura 抱き枕 – Means “hugging pillow”. This is what we call a “body pillow” in the United States.

A dakimakura cover of Holo from Spice and Wolf. (Source)

Dakimakura Cover 抱き枕カバー – This is the pillow case that goes over a dakimakura. They’re very popular items which are usually printed with an anime girl in a provocative “please be gentle with me” sort of pose. Generally, dakimakura covers are sold on their own and you are expected to purchase the cushion inside separately.

Doujinshi 同人誌 – If you’re reading this blog, you probably already know what a doujinshi is!


A typical kamibukuro with artwork by Tinkle. (Source: Rakuten)

Kamibukuro 紙袋 – “Paper Bag”. When you buy a set of doujin goods from an artist, it’ll usually come in a kamibukuro covered in bright illustrations. Some artists go all-out and provide bags made out of PVC with their sets rather than paper!

Muffler Towel

Muffler Towel (Source)

Muffler Towel マフラータオル- In Japan, “muffler” is a loan word for “scarf”. A muffler towel is a towel that is shaped like a scarf. You can wear it around your neck, or tie up your hair with it, or dry your back with it… I guess. I’ve never seen anything quite like it in the U.S. I think they look like really long bar mats!

Orihon 折本 – Literally, it means “folding book”. This is a handmade book, traditionally made from pieces of paper that have been put together and then folded accordian-style. These are often included as omake (bonus items) when you buy an artist’s special doujin goods set, and can contain things like extra sketches or comics. An orihon can by a copy book, and vice-versa.

Poster ポスター – You know what a poster is, right? ^^

Shinkan 新刊 – “New Publication” refers to doujinshi that are… well… newly published.  Artists usually feature a new book at each comiket if they can, as well as selling any extras of older books that they still have copies of.

Shiori しおり – Can also be written as 栞. It means “bookmark”. Sets of bookmarks are a common doujinshi item as they are useful and easy to make!

Shitajiki 下敷き – Also known as a “pencil board”, a shitajiki is a sheet of plastic that you put under a piece of paper while writing. Shitajiki are popular collector’s items among otaku!

Stick Posterスティックポスター – These character posters are tall and vertical like a stick, which is where they get their name. These are often sold in sets. Contrary to the sound of their description, they are not very large. (Average size is about 182 x 515 mm)

Puella Magi Madoka Magica cell phone straps. (Source)

Strap ストラップ – Also known as a “cell phone strap”, it refers to a strap that you attach to your phone or other handheld item with a loop attachment. It is usually made of rubber or PVC and has a charm of some kind of character mascot dangling from it.


A tapestry design by Tatekawa Mako for C82. (Source)

Tapestry タペストリー – This term is borrowed from English and refers to what we often refer to as a “Wall Scroll”, a large cloth wall hanging with an image printed on it.


Various uchiwa by Kimarin. (Source)

Uchiwa うちわ – A hand fan which is often given away as a promotional item. Doujin goods sets often come with these. They can be made of plastic or simply be a  shaped  piece of cardboard with a hole for your finger to go through.

These are just a few of the most commonly sold doujin items. Really, doujin goods can be anything that an artist has self-published. Things like mugs, CDs, PSP (Playstation Portable) skins, can badges and many other small items are sold among doujinshi goods. The more well-known the artist, the more likely they will invest in a really interesting doujin item to sell at comiket. Some even sell custom computer keyboards!

If there’s an item you see frequently that you’d like to see me add to this list, or something I got wrong, let me know in the comments or send me a tweet @ladyriven and I’ll edit this post accordingly. Happy shopping!

Disclaimer: None of the photographs in this post belong to me. They were all hunted down using google images, to use for educational purposes only. I’ve provided the source for each one in the caption. No copyright infringement is intended!

The Dying Art of Cel Collecting

4 Nov

It all started with the Allen Schezar cel above. For $50, I acquired an actual piece of one of my all-time favorite animations, Tenkuu no Escaflowne. Little did I know that it would spawn a collecting addiction that would last for years. The only thing that would stop me, in the end, was the animation industry’s ceasing of using cels to create animation altogether. You could say I was broken-hearted when animation switched over to full CG, but in the long run I was a lot better off. Cel collecting is a habit that really broke the bank, but if I could go back and do it all over again, I would. Nothing quite compared to the high of acquiring an actual piece of your favorite moment of your favorite show while knowing it was one of a kind. I also made a lot of good friends while collecting cels who I still keep in contact with to this day. Lets consider this post my ode to the dying art of collecting animation cels.


My favorite anime at the time was far and away “Fushigi Yuugi”. It was also the show from which I focused my cel collecting. The same year that I got the Allen Schezar cel, I found this Tamahome cel online and asked my dad to get it for me for Christmas. I eagerly awaited the holiday and when it finally came, Tamahome was mine! I couldn’t have been happier. After that, I began to scour the web for sites that sold cels and also discovered a cel forum where I would eventually come to make a lot of good friends. I built up a very respectable collection of FY cels.


There’s no doubt that the pinnacle of my cel-collecting “career” was aquiring this opening sequence cel of Tamahome and Miaka. For a cel collector, owning part of the most re-used sequence of your favorite show – the opening – is a special thing, indeed.


Many dollars, cels and years later, one of my final purchases was this shot of Nuriko. While far from ideal, it is possibly my personal favorite cel for a variety of reasons. One of them perhaps being that Nuriko was far and away the most popular, rare, and expensive character to collect cels of. The harder it became for me to get ahold of a Nuriko cel, the more I wanted one. At the time, it became an obsession. I ended up landing a few “better” shots of Nuriko, but nothing topped this one for me. Nuriko looked his best by far in this episode, and he is wearing my favorite of his costumes, which I would later sew from scratch for cosplay. This cel has so much sentimental value to me, that if I could, I would purchase a better cel from the sequence if I had the chance, even though I no longer collect cels. Another image from this sequence belongs to my good friend Jody of Mind Eclipse Cels, so check out her gallery.


Fushigi Yuugi certainly was not the only show I collected cels from, but it was the most special to me. Over the years I acquired some stunning pieces of the show and even now I would have a horribly difficult time selling them if I was strapped for cash. The fact that they are one of a kind is perhaps what made collecting cels so incredibly alluring to me and to many others. Over the years I was fortunate enough to get several cels autographed by Watase Yuu and even one by Midorikawa Hikaru, making them even more special and unique.


While I am content no longer being able to collect cels, I certainly don’t regret the time that I did and I still greatly treasure my collection.  I am thankful for the friends I made who shared my hobby (most especially Ryouko, LadyBrick and Trebuchet) and the help they gave me in finding the scenes I loved. As an avid fan of animation, I can honestly say that it was an incredibly exciting and fulfilling hobby, and I will always look back upon it with happiness in my heart. While it is unfortunate that cels are no longer used in creating animation, it only makes the ones that still exist that much more extraordinary.

%d bloggers like this: