0 Items | £0.00


The Eden of the East serial continues

Monday 6th June 2011

Andrew Osmond finds terror tactics, national disasters and rogue states in King of Eden.

Eden of the East[Spoiler warning: this piece gives away some story points from the original Eden of the East TV series.] The story begun in the anime serial Eden of the East continues in King of Eden, the first of two feature film sequels by director Kenji Kamiyama (Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex) and Production I.G. Of course, we’re mainly watching to find out what will happen next to the main characters: Akira Takizawa, the daffily spontaneous player of a game to save Japan, and Saki Morimi, who fell into his adventure and then for him. Of course, we do find out what the pair do next; but Kamiyama also wants to show us what’s been happening to Japan.

At the end of the Eden TV series, the Japanese villains launched a missile strike against their own country. One of the perps was an angry young man taking revenge on a system that let him down (as it let down Saki in the series). Another had a grand scheme to “redo Japan from the postwar era,” downsizing the country, removing the idlers and gerontocracy and increasing Japan’s global competitiveness. The missiles launched, but Akira and his allies blew them up before they hit their targets.

In King of Eden, Saki tells us what action films rarely do; what happened next. “The politicians started getting nervous. The markets tanked... All across the globe, Japan was ridiculed for trying to commit ‘national suicide.’ As a result, we lost all influence on the global stage... For the younger generation, who never lived during Japan's bubble economy, this was the first time their own country’s problems mattered to the international community. Somehow, not knowing what will happen tomorrow is both nerve-racking and refreshing. No-one said it out loud, but ever since that day, the lingering, suffocating feeling had changed into a quiet optimism.”

Eden of the EastWe’ll have to wait to see how this is extended in the second Eden film, Paradise Lost. However, the speech is something to treasure for any anime fans interested in how Japanese people view their own country. Not that Kamiyama represents “the Japanese,” of course; he’s very much his own man. According to him, he spent years feeling like Holden Caulfield in Catcher in the Rye, and trying to understand dissidents and “terrorists” such as Yukio Mishima and the teenage Otoya Yamaguchi (who murdered the head of the Japan Socialist party in 1960). In the Eden of the East serial, Akira compares going NEET, the state of not being in Employment, Education or Training, to an act of terror. “Naw, I wasn’t doing anything so cool!” simpers his companion.

Several films prefigure the ideas in King of Eden. Kamiyama’s thinking was also shaped by Mamoru Oshii, with whom he worked at Production I.G. Eden’s political dimensions echo those of Oshii’s 1993 Patlabor 2, another film which features smoke-and-mirrors terrorism and state-of-Japan monologues (Oshii mocks Japan’s phony “pacifist” status in a world of war). The more recent Vexille, directed by Fumihiko Sori, presents an extreme vision of Japan going it alone in the world, becoming a North Korea-style evil empire. One of the most intriguing things about Vexille is that it switches to a foreign viewpoint, with an American heroine investigating the inscrutable country.

Meanwhile, uncomfortably close to reality, there’s the live-action The Sinking of Japan. It’s based on a 1973 novel by Sakyo Komatsu, who imagined a quake to end all quakes, threatening to destroy Japan completely. But if Japan were to be annihilated, Komatsu asks, could the Japanese still be Japanese? For Komatsu, Japan’s volcanoes, hot springs and wooded mountains created the Japanese character, along with the constant threat of earthquakes and tidal waves. Komatsu wondered if a disaster could erase what’s essential to Japan; for Kamiyama, more than a quarter-century on, the uncertainty of a national disaster might be liberating. In the months and years after Japan’s worst twenty-first tragedy, who will prove more right?

Eden of the East: King of Eden is out on UK DVD and Blu-ray from Manga Entertainment.


Eden Of The East Movie 1: King Of Eden/air Communication

was £19.99
2010's Most Intriguing New Anime Returns With A Brand New Movie!
The story continues where it left off from the Eden of the East TV series, and brings Morimi Saki back to the USA in order to find Takizawa Akira. The other Selecao however are actively moving to take part in the game, and a few in particular are making dangerous moves in order to eliminate Takizawa or move towards their picture of a better Japan.
Eden Of The East Movie 1: King Of Eden also comes with a bonus DVD containing Eden Of The East: Air Communication - a feature length film edit of the original 11 episode EOTE TV series from 2009. It is an excellent accompniment to the brand new movie ensuring new and old fans alike can enjoy the entire EOITE saga from beginning to end.



In Kodansha’s March issue of Nakayoshi, it was revealed that CLAMP's Cardcaptor Sakura is getting a brand new project to celebrate the manga's 20th anniversary.

Attack on Titan music: Yoko Hikasa

Paul Browne on the songstress behind the dramatic ending theme
‘Utsukushiki Zankoku na Sekai’ (This Beautiful Cruel World) is, on the whole, a wistful and enigmatic song that seems strangely disconnected from a series that regularly deals with death and despair. Yoko Hikasa’s mesmerising vocals manage to draw the viewer in, lending an air of reflection and regret.

Robocop vs Anime Cyborgs

Andrew Osmond on the history of man-machine interfaces
RoboCop is thrown into interesting perspective by looking at his anime cousins. In Japan, RoboCop is one of a crowd. Two of anime’s greatest poster icons – Motoko Kusanagi in Ghost in the Shell and Tetsuo in Akira – are or become cyborgs. Moreover, a man-turned-robot was an anime hero back in 1963. We’re talking about 8th Man, shown in America as Tobor the Eighth Man. It’s a policeman who, yes, gets murdered by a crime gang, then resurrected in a robot body.

Who's Who in Dragon Ball 1

Ever wonder just how Goku and friends became the greatest heroes on Earth?
Wonder no more, as the original Dragon Ball reveals the origins of Akira Toriyama’s beloved creations! The faces may look familiar, but everything else is different in this classic series!

Cosplay: One Piece

Paul Jacques rounds up the best dressed fans
With a tip of the hat to the best-selling One Piece, Fayyaz Dawda cosplays as the bendy-limbed hero Luffy.
Boruto: Naruto The Movie is hitting select UK theaters November 10th, just one month after the immensely popular Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection 'F'. Has there ever been a better time to be an anime fan in the UK?

Nura Rise of the Yokai Music: Monkey Majik

Tom Smith on a Canadian-Japanese pop outfit
Monkey Majik first shot to fame in Japan in 2006 when their second major-label single Around The World became the opening theme to TV drama Saiyuuki, an updated version of the famous Chinese tale Journey to the West. A fitting introduction for the band, considering the story is widely known as Monkey in English. Magic.
Yesterday, the announcement video for the Magi: Sinbad no Bouken (Magi: Adventure of Sinbad) anime began streaming. The anime series will be based on the manga of the same name, which is set 30 years prior to the main series, and depicts the early years of the fan-favourite, Sinbad.
Contact Us   |   Refund Policy   |   Delivery Times   |   Privacy statement   |   Terms & Conditions
Please note your card statement will show billing by MVM. The Eden of the East serial continues from the UK's best Anime Blog.