Blog 232 > Bye Netflix, Hello SWTOR!

SWTOR rocks! Yup, my Tatooine Toyboxers, I’m back for my final broadcast of 2011. And guess what I’ll be talking about? The “Star Wars: The Old Republic” (SWTOR) massively multiplayer online (MMO) game, of course! Well, just a little bit, hehe. After two amazing SWTOR beta weekends (11-13 and 25-28 November), I leapt back into SWTOR early access almost one full week (14 December) before the official launch date (20 December), and brought back my bad-ass female cyborg character, Punktrooper Motoko Mandara, based on the most-famous cyberpunk chick in anime history: Major Motoko Kusanagi, the elite anti-terrorist commander in “Ghost in the Shell”, “Stand Alone Complex”, and “Solid State Society”. Haha, very nice indeed!

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Blog 219 > Sayonara 2009 to Onigiri 2010

Sayonara, 2009! Konnichiwa, my Tirelessly Tumbling Toyboxers! Got onigiri? Are you ready? Ready to endure a tumbling tidal wave of tear-jerking titles, blood-splattering titles, angst-ridden titles, and titles not worth mentioning? Ready to slash and slay another dragon-sized mega-cast of 99 wallpapers? Ready for some onigiri? Hehe, then what are you waiting for? Let’s start the show…

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Blog 193 > Momos, Muranos & Masamune

Holy damn! Halfway through March already? My birthday just days away? Wow. Probably the most concentrated, contested and colorful week so far this year! But first, before I forget, don’t forget to vote for my “Angry Momo” fanart entry at Angry Mimi’s Peachy BlogFirst Round and Final Round, lol. Vote! Do it! Do it now! Secondly, my Trendy Toyboxers, welcome to another five-course meal of humming-and-sizzling images and dozens of ruminating-and-illuminating leaps on art, anime and life. What else? This week, we dart around angry young mascots, peek backwards at scantily-clad police-girls and hot-wired cyberpunks, rewind across motorized birthday gifts, and hopscotch through a haphazard maze of random sandwiches, felines, smog tests, supermarkets, dentists, girl scouts, spanked maids, double laptops, and MP3 players! So what are you waiting for? Let’s pump up the volume and begin the show…

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Blog 182 > Year of Anime, Rock & Otaku

Ah, what a year it’s been! For my last mega-post of 2008, I tackle another mixed bag of “Rock Band” sessions, a year’s truckload of anime speed-reviews and faves, and a sparkly sprinkle of otaku thanks and wishes. So happy holidays and all the rest. Now on with the show…

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Blog 138 > Operation Rebox – Completed

Mission accomplished! You didn’t think I’d make it, did ya? ^_^;

Back on June 22nd, I launched Operation Rebox. And now, less than 2 weeks later, the operation is complete (sorta, since I don’t really wanna take apart Darth Vader or Storm Trooper). If you threw your two cents of reluctant encouragement, thanx, lol. So to commemorate the event, here’s a nice sampling of the cleaned and *reboxed* figures… Photo Set 1 and Photo Set 2.

P.S. By the way, thanx *Chun* for our debate on commissioned art, thanx *Kris* for our discussion on anime blogging, as well as *Gordon* and *Meronpan* for your random blue-haired replies, lol. I’ve added u guys to my blog list. (If I missed someone, yell back!) Without doubt, the interactivity of the anime blogging community is another reflection of Danny’s tireless efforts. Speaking of tired… Orz

P.P.S. Ahh, what the hell~ *Team Blue* did it, so why not? Self Portrait 1 and Self Portrait 2.

P.P.P.S. Here’s the link to my DC Member News post, hehe.

Blog 101 > Shakira Versus Motoko

WOW, Shakira! First, let me say that during my workday breakfasts, I always keep the Spanish TV station turned on, since Spanish morning shows are always funnier, dancier, and never as serious as American morning shows. Much easier to wake up with a smile, lol. Well, today, the music video show of the hour played a newer Shakira video “Las de la Intuicion”. Usually, Shakira doesn’t turn my head, but I think this is the first time I thought “WOW!” seeing her. I don’t know why, but in her short black outfit and that bright blue-violet wig, she looked especially hot! If you remember my Blog 094 > Ghost in the Figure!, I think Motoko’s got some burning competition, hahaha!

Full Motoko Photoshoot (92) >>

Blog 094 > Ghost in the Figure!

Konnichiwa! For this massive 92-shot photoshoot, we step away from our Gothic Lolita Girls, and welcome the 1/7-scale “Purple Motoko” and approx-1/10-scale “Blue Tachikoma” figures released earlier this year!

Sculpted by Tuyoshi Takahashi, manufactured by a Vice & Alter collaboration, and released in January-February 2007, this faithful 1/7-scale PVC rendition of Motoko — from the long-running cyberpunk epic series Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex — portrays her standing coolly and calmly in her gray combat suit with a black pistol hanging loosely from her gloved hand. Just as the Major should be, lol… Meanwhile, manufactured by Art Storm, and released in May 2007, this excellent approx-1/10-scale Soft Vinyl version of the blue Tachikoma — also from the same Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex series — depicts the bubbly Artificially Intelligent spider-like mini-tank in a joint-poseable bright blue armor. Just as slick as its animated counterpart!

For this Canon photoshoot, I saved 117 shots, then narrowed it down to these 92 shots. While I used Photoshop to clean up an annoying dust particle which reappeared in Motoko’s hair for many of the shots, no color or lighting adjustments were made. Now, without further delay, enjoy the photoshoot!

P.S. Internet Explorer has now officially pissed me off. If Firefox can handle 90-100 images (4-10 MB total) per page without breaking, then why can’t IE? For instance, (1) both IE6 and IE7 erratically interprets pure black (#000000) in these images as transparent pixels, which results in white dots popping up through these holes (even if I change the [img] background color to black!), and (2) when using [div] tags, IE also fails to display the [div] content as the total number of images approaches 100. Ridiculous. So from this point onward, I can no longer promise my support of IE. Sorry.

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My Anime Figure List >>
Click for Full Photoshoot (92) >>

Blog 078 > Will Figures Never End?

Ah, finally! My first figure-collection update in ages! Finally moved out the boring 8-year-old vases from the stepped wall in the living area, and replaced them with my collection of still-boxed anime (and Lara Croft) figures! Jeez, 17 figures still boxed! For those who don’t yet know, with the exception of some of my earliest figures, I don’t open boxes until I’m ready to do a full photoshoot. Then once I’ve finished the photoshoot, I display them in the ever-rising shelves above my laptop setup. Only 37 figures opened! And yesterday, I just bought and added a third tier of shelves to make room for new post-photoshoot figures. Argh, will it never end? But now, more pics…

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Blog 058 > Anime Voices Carry!

This past week, I’ve been watching the post-apocalyptic anime Innocent Venus. And after 4 of 12 episodes, it rocks! (So far, 4 of 5 stars!) But one thing that caught my ear, was the voice for the blonde-but-deadly “Lenny”. In fact, her dark throaty voice reminded me of the just-as-beautiful-but-deadly twin-gunned “Revy” from the amazingly brutal anime Black Lagoon (5 of 5 stars for both seasons together!). So I checked, and guess what? I was right, the same voice actress: Megumi Toyoguchi! But that’s not all…

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Blog 045 > Sexy Cyberpunks!

Okay, enough with the high-school childishness, lol. Bring on the full-figured women of cyberpunk sci-fi! For this post, I introduce one of my newest and rarest pieces, the raven-haired 1/6-scale “Motoko Kusanagi Hard Disk” (in resin) based on the original 1991 sci-fi manga Ghost in the Shell by Masamune Shirow. Sculpted by Yoshimasa Nakao and released by ALPHA, Motoko stretches to a towering 13-inches tall.

In addition, I welcome the return of one of my earliest pieces in May 2006, the lavender-haired 1/8-scale “Galhound” (in PVC) from the 2002 poster series Galgrease, also by Masamune Shirow. Released by Yamato, Galhound stands about 7 inches tall. One background note: While Galhound wasn’t the first figure I acquired, she was the first figure that caught my eye before I ever thought of starting a collection. You could even say she planted the idea in my head!

As of this post, both figures are pretty rare on eBay or otherwise. Furthermore, it’s interesting to note Masamune’s fascination with black, silver, and purple color schemes. Not that I mind. LOL!… In this Canon photoshoot, I saved 45 shots, then narrowed it down to 35 shots.

Otakurl it!

Click for all 35 >>

post 330 ~ DVD post…

“battlestar galactica: season 1” (2004)

“Friend” (2001; Korean)

“Ghost in the Shell: 2nd Gig” (2005)
post 330 ~ hey, it’s been a while since my last DVD post, so here it is…

  • battlestar galactica: season 1 ~ no question, FIVE STARS!… best sci-fi series i’ve seen since “dark angel” or “firefly” or “star trek: DS9 or voyager”, and even better (and darker) than those!… the season close was mind-blowing!… and now i gotta buy the season 2.0 which is actually the FIRST HALF of season two… argh ;)
  • friend ~ not bad at all… childhood friendships, adolescent differences, and adult betrayals… FOUR STARS… tho i’d recommend “oldboy” before this one, hehe ;)
  • ghost in the shell: 2nd GIG ~ began disc #3… still maintaining the high level of socio-political and cyber-cultural complexities!!!… still FIVE STARS!!!
  • oh my goddess! ~ this is the 1993 original 5-episode series… a wholesome and innocent and teenaged anime that reaches its best in the concluding episode, FOUR STARS!!!… the 2000 movie which comes later in the story timeline was FIVE STARS!… can’t wait to see the new 2005 anime series which expands upon the earlier works! ;)))
  • thanx for the gigunda fortune cookie!!! love you! ;)))

  • and lastly, a plug for jen-shaka’s band:… and yup, that’s me in the fine print: “max mancoon”, hahaha ;)))

post 322 ~ absolutely breathtaking!

“Le Portrait de Petite Cossette” (2005)

“So Close” (2002)
post 322 ~ DVDs, towers, and penthouses…

  • portrait of little cosette (netflix) ~ WOW… ab-so-lute-ly breathtaking!!!

    for any fan of anime, this is a must!… for those who’ve seen the 30-minute “voices of a distant star“, this mystery/horror anime recalls the same indescribably sublime style of moment-to-moment imagery… for those who’ve seen the schizophrenic mystery/sci-fi series “rahxephon“, this anime recalls the same epic psychological clashes… and for those who’ve heard the piercingly haunting music of yuki kajiura (at times rivaling even surpassing the talents of yoko kanno!) from the series “noir“, this anime takes her music further into the shadowy depths of tragedy and mystery… incredible piece of animated art, hypnotizingly heart-stopping… despite only 4 of 5 stars for its three-episode brevity, the DVD and CD soundtrack are already on my WISH LIST! haha! ;)))

  • ghost in the shell ~ yet another amazing piece of anime… finally finished “gits: sac 2nd GIG” disc TWO!… ah, the cyberpunk socio-political intrigue gets even more intense!… can’t wait for disc THREE in a few weeks!
  • so close (netflix) ~ watched the asian/hong-kong film “so close” over the weekend… STYLISH ACTION that easily surpasses “charlie’s angels” in its sleek sexiness, and its convincingly portrayed martial arts… Qu Shi looks like an asian Angelina Jolie, while Karen Mok looks like an asian (aka digital_sushi)… 4 of 5 stars!… ALSO on my wish list! ;)
  • dvd tower ~ yup, with all the DVDs we’ve been getting, we bought our 5th DVD tower over the weekend… not counting bonus/extra discs, but yes, including series discs in a season, we’ve exceeded 400 DVDs!!!… DAMN!
  • penthouse ~ last but not least, our “penthouse” issue arrived in the mail… it’s been about 10 years since our last issues… hmmm, has “penthouse” gotten more conservative in its photoshoots?… i’ll confirm next month, hahaha ;)

    update ~ a-ha! i figured out why nowadays “penthouse” seems tamer in print… they advertise their webpages with “hotter” versions of the magazine shoots… yeah, makes sense… :)