Why the Kamen Rider Gaim Toy Line is So Grape

November 16, 2015


Being a Kamen Rider fan for many years, I’m no stranger to the fact that the franchise is just one big toy commercial. However, to succeed in its endeavor to sell toys, both the show and the toys need to be good in their own right and play off each other’s strengths and unique characteristics. On top of that, in order to keep the long-time fans buying, innovations and improvements must be made to keep things fresh and updated.

In my opinion, the 2013/2014 Kamen Rider series, Kamen Rider Gaim, is a phenomenal show. Whether you love it or hate it, we can’t deny the fact that it took the series to new heights and took a concept as silly-sounding as Fruit Samurai and turned it into something serious, epic and mature – a series full of intrigue, twists and high-stakes that even non-Kamen Rider fans could enjoy. Hardly surprising, if you ask me, considering it was written by none other than Urobuchi Gen, famous for his other works including Saya no Uta, Psycho-Pass, Fate/Zero and Puella Magi Madoka Magica. Yes, that Urobuchi Gen.

However, I don’t think that the show’s success can solely account for the 390% increase in toy sales and a total revenue of 10 billion yen over the course of the series run. No. If you ask me, the toys had a part to play as well. In this article, we’ll be taking a look at various aspects of both the show and the toy line to see why it’s just so ingenious.

WARNING! There are spoilers for the show within this post! While there aren’t any plot spoilers, the various forms and abilities for a number of the Riders are discussed!

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Why Yui is my Favorite K-On! Character

February 18, 2013


Ah, Yui… she is undeniably popular and is always amongst the top in many K-On! character popularity rankings. However, she is usually bested by other fan favorites like Mio and Azusa. Putting aside the fact that Mio and Azusa are super-popular and have legions of fans, I suspect that Yui often falls short of the top spot because she has a reputation of being klutzy, airheaded and annoying to a fault. While this is arguably true to a certain extent, quoting the tagline of a famous toy property, I believe that there’s more to her than meets the eye.

In this post, I shall share with you why I personally find Yui to be the best girl in the K-On! anime series. As with all my opinion posts, you are perfectly free to agree or disagree with me. I won’t hold it against you. For more than a couple of months.

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Parody Dōjinshi and Self-Expression

January 14, 2013


Doujinshi, written as ‘dōjinshi’ throughout the following essay, is something that is close to the hearts of many Otaku, especially myself (take that however you may). And because of this, I decided to write a research paper on the subject for this past semester. Yes. You heard me. A paper on doujinshi for a university class. I love my major.

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Tradition and Modernity in Kiki’s Delivery Service

November 26, 2011

This semester, I took a course on Postwar Japanese Film and Anime. For one of our individual assignments, we had to write an analytical essay on one of the assigned movies. With the semester finally over, it is my pleasure to present to you my essay on one of my favorite Ghibli movies, Kiki’s Delivery Service, focusing on how the theme of tradition and modernity is presented in the film.

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