Idol’s New Album Just For Mothers and Daughters!

Former Morning Musume member Nozomi Tsuji released her first solo album in Japan last week, geared especially towards mothers and daughters! Minna Happy! Mama no Uta (Everybody’s Happy! Mama’s Songs) is a cover album of anime theme songs from Nozomi’s childhood. Included on the album is (of course) the Sailor Moon theme song, as well as songs from My Neighbor Totoro, Chibi Maruko-Chan, and Anpanman. She has also released her own song on the album, “Chibi Devil” and fans can watch a music video for that here!

While this news may seem like small potatoes, we’re reporting this for the simple reason that we’re a little irked. There’s no Sailor Moon merchandise available in Japan except for the DVD boxsets and manga. When Sailor Moon’s resurgence began in Japan, the Japanese press release all stated that this was going to be a chance for mothers to enjoy this with a new generation of fans – their daughters. All there was to celebrate this resurgence was a cooking class and a DVD launch event reuniting the 5 main stars of the show. Nozomi Tsuji’s album with it’s brief hint of Sailor Moon seems to be the only other thing that mothers can do to enjoy the series with their daughters (aside from watching the episodes on DVD or on ANIMAX). But where are the dolls? Where are the costumes and clothes? Somehow, we think that this lack of merchandise means that the kids of this generation won’t be able to connect the same way that we did with the show, and that some of the experiences that the mothers probably want to share with their daughters related to Sailor Moon might be missed out on this time around.

New Level E Promotional Video!

The anime adaptation of Yoshihiro Togashi’s Level E now has two official websites: one from Pierrot and another from TV Tokyo. The TV Tokyo site has a special treat for all you Level E fans that can’t wait to see the anime – a promotional video featuring some teasers from the anime, as well as everyone’s favorite idol, Shoko Nakagawa! Shokotan enters her dressing room over the voice of the narrator, Fumihiko Tachiki who says “Hundreds of kinds of aliens come and go to Earth and live”. Shokotan, then turns into a long-tongued alien that is “giza” scary, and we see a preview of the anime. At the end of the video, Shokotan reverts from her alien to her human form, and leaves, ready to perform. We wonder if this could be a hint for who will be singing the theme song? Shokotan shot this during the most recent Jump Super Anime Tour, and was happy to be chosen to play an alien in this short. She hopes everyone will watch the anime when it airs on TV – we are sure all of Togashi’s fans will watch it too!

(In other Shoko Nakagawa news, she was showing some of her old favorite video games on her blog, and look which one she chose for one of the entries!)

Sera Myu Sightings Late March 2010 – Part 2

Not too much to report now, but we thought we’d still report these since these actors were all featured in huge roles during Sera Myu!

Kenji Urai is a Prince!

Fresh off his win at the 44th Kinokuniya Theater Awards, Kenji Urai (Tuxedo Mask from 2001-2002) will be making an appearance in a stage musical, and he wil get to play a prince! Bara to Samurai: Goemon Rock Overdrive (Rose to Samurai: Goemon Rock Overdrive) began on March 18th in Tokyo, and will travel through to Osaka in April and May. The play takes place in the 17th century, about two pirates named Goemon and Ann. Lured by a reward, another pirate tries to kidnap Goemon, but captures Ann instead. Everyone finds out later that Annu is the long-lost daughter of the recently deceased King, and is set to rule over his kingdom. At her first party, Annu meets a prince named Charles from another country who falls in love with her, but Goemon isn’t ready to give her up easily. Kenji is playing Prince Charles, and has received some rave reviews from fans already over his performance! At a promotional event held earlier this month, the two leading cast members playing Ann and Goemon (Yuki Amami and Arata Furata) were excited for the chance to cosplay as pirates on stage!

Tae Kimura Presents at 33rd Japanese Academy Awards After Winning Year!

2009 was a great year for Tae Kimura (Fisheye in Sailor Moon SuperS musicals). She won two awards for her role in the critically acclaimed film All Around Us (including a Japanese Academy Award), and became well known around Japan. A few weeks ago, she appeared to present an award at the Japanese Academy Awards, and was also nominated for a Best Supporting Actress award for her role in the Japanese film Zero Focus. This movie was about a mysterious disappearance of a woman’s husband. We have a photo of her at the awards featured here (in the brown dress). Unfortunately, she didn’t win, but we are still proud of everything she has achieved! Zero Focus will be released to DVD and BD this June. Fans can check out more information about the film in English here.

Maki Aizawa Goes Shopping and Has a Beauty Blog

Maki Aizawa (Loof Merrow in 2004) went for a little shopping trip with her friend, Yuko Ogura (another idol) before they had to go to work. This for some strange reason was covered by the tabloids (*sigh*). They went to one of the most trendiest stores in Tokyo called ISBIT DAIKANYAMA which is very popular among idols for the eclectic selection of clothing it carries. They tried on a few items and took some photos of themselves without makeup and went on their merry way (which included posts on both Yuko and Maki’s blogs). Maki is the girl on the right side of the photo we have posted here. Maki also started a beauty blog a few months ago which is slowly gaining some steam with her fans. She reviews beauty products that she uses.

Tabe Mikako in New Lipstick Commercial!

Tabe Mikako (Yaten Kou/Sailor Star Healer) is currently being featured in a new lipstick commercial in Japan for Orbis Rouge Crystal. This lipstick has special shine enhancers in it to make your lips sparkle. Orbis has two commercials for this product, the first one features Tabe putting the lipstick on and talking about how it makes her lips sparkle. The second one, features Japanese pianist Alice Sara Ott playing a Chopin waltz off of her brand new album. Both aim to show that this lipstick will make you sparkle and shine at just the right moment! Fans can check out videos of both commercials here!

Anza Oyama a Matter of Weeks Away From South America!

Anza Oyama (Sailor Moon from 1993-1998) is the lead singer of Japanese metal band Head Phones President, and they are heading out for the first time to South America a month from now! They will be playing four shows in Brazil, and 3 of them are at anime conventions: the concert on April 24th will happen at Anime Hero!, then they will head off to Anime Osasco the next day, and then to Porto Allegre’s J-Party Ballads on the 30th. On May 2nd, they will finish their tour playing in Rio de Janeiro. We know our friends at SOS Brazil are very excited about this and we can’t wait to hear what they have to report! The band sings in English, and their style of music is definitely a departure from the cutesy songs fans know Anza best for singing in Sera Myu. Fans who want to give their music a listen can check out their MySpace! We wish Head Phones President the best of luck on their tour and we hope to see them perform in other places as well.

Shokotan to Cover Not One But Two Sailor Moon Songs!

New Album Full of AniSon Covers Coming Soon!

Set to be released on March 10th is a new album from Shoko “Shokotan” Nakagawa called “Shokotan☆Hip 3: Anison Connects Mankind”. This album is chock full of familiar songs from anime, and comes in two flavours, a CD-only version (SRCL-7220) and a CD+DVD version (SRCL-7218). For those fans who opt for the latter version, you’re in for a treat! Not only do you get videos and making-of clips on the DVD, but you get a bunch of additional tracks too! Two of these additional tracks are Moonlight Densetsu and Sailor Star Song, the two beloved openings of the Sailor Moon series! Shoko will also cover two songs sung by stars of Sailor Moon, Give A Reason from Slayers Next by Megumi Hayashibara (Himeko) and Don’t You…? from Himitsu no Akko-Chan by Mitsuko Horie (Sailor Galaxia). Shoko is even covering a song from Yoshihiro Togashi’s Yu Yu Hakusho, Smile Bomb! This release is just starting to pop up on online stores. You are better off just searching for Shoko’s name and working from there since the album’s name is probably going to change from what the stores have listed now. Here is the tracklist:

01. Angel Night ~ ~ You are an angel (“City Hunter 2”)
02. GOD KNOWS … (“The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya)
03. Interstellar flight (“Macross FRONTIER”)
04. Unyielding wish (“Magic Knight Rayearth”)
05. Freckles (“Rurouni Kenshin”)
06. Rain-Kissed Bouquet (“YAWARA!”)
07. Smile Bomb (“Yu Yu Hakusho”)
08.Fuse of Excitement (“Fushigi Yuugi”)
09. Give a reason (“Slayers NEXT”)
10. Refrain of Soul (“Neon Genesis Evangelion”)
11 Come Out, Incredible ZENKAI Power! (“Dragon Ball Z”)
12. Precure 5, Full Throttle GO GO! (Anime “Yes! Precure 5 GoGo!” / Kudou Mayu with Purikyua 5)
Bonus tracks (CD + DVD)
13. Bit by Bit My Heart is Charmed, Opening Song -short ver .- (“Dragon Ball GT”)
14. Don’t say “lazy”-short ver .- (anime “K-On!”)
15. Moonlight Densetsu-short ver .- (“Sailor Moon”)
16. Sailor Stars Song-short ver .- (“Sailor Stars”)
17. Wonderful Color Happiness -short ver .- (“Magical Emi, the Magic Star”)
18. DON’T YOU …?-Short ver .- (“Himitsu no Akko-chan”)

Shokotan always covers her anime songs vibrantly, and this album looks like it will be a lot of fun! Shoko has always loved to sing songs from Sailor Moon and cosplay as her. Here are a few links to video for you all to enjoy!

From 2009, singing with a bunch of dancers cosplaying as Sailor Mercury.
Cosplay Silliness on a Japanese Variety Show – 1
Cosplay Silliness on a Japanese Variety Show – 2

BREAKING NEWS! Naoko Was At The 20th Anniversary Event!

In my endless search to put together the best coverage I possibly can to keep everyone updated on what happened at the event, I returned to the blog I found of the first fan I found days ago who had mentioned that she had won a ticket. To my surprise, were a few lines in there about a photo being published on Kyan Chiaki’s blog with none other than Sailor Moon creator Naoko Takeuchi. I didn’t think I was reading this right – because in every news article that I had read, there was no mention of Naoko being there! The blogger thinks that Naoko must have been sitting in the back, and unfortunately she thought she had a terrible spot sitting in the back as well. This blogger is now kicking herself for not looking behind her – she really wanted to meet “Naoko-hime” (Princess Naoko). We are all relieved to see the happiness on Naoko’s face, and this is also the first picture we’ve seen of her in over a year (her Bandai Hobby Center photos were taken in October of last year). Perhaps we may see an entry about this on Sailor Moon Channel? Kyan Chiaki’s entry reads:

It is so great!

I met Ms. Naoko Takeuchi!

Now I feel very unfortunate having dressed the way I did! (NOTE: In a previous entry, she said that she was supposed to wear red boots but at the last minute they were the wrong size so she had to wear white ones.)

Nonetheless, she was very kind and wonderful!

Ms. Takeuchi is known for her beautiful and delicate manga drawings, but in person she is really lovely like a Goddess!

I forgot to wear gloves!!

Until next time!

We are once again relieved, happy, and elated to know that she attended this event!