Category Archives: Little Tokyo

GUDETAMA’s Creator/Designer visits SANRIO in Little Tokyo

Since 2013, Gudetama (ぐでたま) made its debut as a Sanrio character. Gudetama became an instant STAR with Gudetama theme cafes, stores and even a Gudetama themed menu in Los Angeles back in 2015.

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Gudetama’s origins begin with a character design contest held by Sanrio back in 2013, coming in 2nd to Kirimi-chan.

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Fastword to 2018, Gudetama’s creator/designer, AMY (Emi Nagashima) visits the Sanrio store in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles, making this her first visit ever.

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Gudetama fans stood in line to receive a signed drawing of Gudetama from AMY.

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As AMY made a special appearance in Los Angeles, Aggretsuko creator/designer visited the Sanrio store in San Francisco for the continuation of Aggretsuko’s Den Of Rage event.

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With Gudetama & Aggretsuko becoming instant stars & both characters getting their own TV series (Gudetama: TBS & Aggretsuko: Netflix), it’s only a matter of time before Sanrio develops yet another super cute and adorable character we can all be be obsessed with.

Here’s our photoset from AMY’s visit:

Take a look at out video as well:


Who’s your favorite SANRIO character? Comment below!

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ANIME EXPO 2018

Anime Expo 2018 was a complete success!

AX18Day1.jpg For the 27th time, Anime Expo came back with full force from July 4th – July 8th drawing fans from 70 different countries. This year over 110,000 people attended Anime Expo, thats 2,342 more attendees than in Anime Expo 2017, making a local economic impact of $100 million to the city of Los Angeles.

Although Anime Expo went off without a hitch, there were a few slight inconveniences.

Before Anime Expo even began, they were altered to a possible threat made against AX and its attendees. According to Anime New Network, the threat was made by a man who allegedly stated via text, “These cons are due for a high school shooting, by a high school kidd [sic]. I’m working on a case at the moment. Shit u [sic] not.” although he did not specifically stated Anime Expo as a target, Anime Expo responded by promptly by ‘alerting local law enforcement to take appropriate actions in accordance with their procedures.‘ in a statement the Promotion of Japanese Animation (SPJA) said:

“Just as in 2017, we are working with security teams and local law enforcement, including K9 teams and traffic control officers, to maintain the safety of our event. Additionally, as previously announced, we are utilizing RFID badges for AX this year and will have security checks at each entrance. We encourage attendees to check our mobile app and maps to get familiarized with the various designated entrances.”

Thankfully, AX came and went without incident. Although the seriousness of this threat wasn’t felt among con goers; With public shootings happening all over the country on a daily basis, ‘indirect’ threats such as these, should NOT be taken with grain of salt. Though it may be a slight inconvenience, security checks at AX do their job by preventing such incidents to ever happen. If you would like to read more details on this situation please read Anime News Network’s article here.

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Moving on to more lighter but heated topics:

Los Angeles suffered a huge heat wave during day 2 & day 3 of Anime Expo with temperatures reaching up to 108°. Although the convention center had functioning air conditioning, outside the heat was unbearable. Mailing AX badges eliminated “LineCon” or the long tedious, on-site registration line. Attendees were still not happy about waiting in line to get inside the convention center due to bag checks. Attendees also took to social to suggest that Anime Expo should cap their tickets due to overcrowding.

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Do agree that Anime Expo should cap their badges? leave a comment below, we’d love to hear your opinions.

Be as it may, the heatwave was no match for hard working, determined cosplayers, whom in the middle of the scorching sun, went all out in their cosplays. Check these awesome cosplays:

We interviewed some of these wonderful cosplayers and this is what they had to say, about why they attended Anime Expo 2018 and how we dealt with the heat weave:

Before I jump on to a different topic, a HUGE  shoutout to these guys at Alove yogurt, who, in the middle of the scorching sun, passed out these delicious yogurts to con goers

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Thanks guys! (Peach Flavor was the best!)

In addition to the 110K attendees,  over 150 guests and industry made appearances including, Go Nagai, Hiromi Wakabayashi, Mari Okada, Sean Danconia, Santa Inoue, and SUSHIO. Booths also held guest appearances as with, Project Sekai who had Nekopara’s creator, Sayori in attendance for fan autographs.

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Since taking photos of Sayori was prohibited, here’s her signature dedicated to me, Krystal.

The Exhibit & Entertainment Halls also featured more than 524 Exhibitors (74 Exhibitors more than AX 2017) Among them was AnimePls, a new Anime brand that is dedicated to bringing you exclusive merchandise from various anime series including: Hatsune Miku, Attack On Titan, Yugioh, My Hero Academia & Aggretsuko! Check their booth from AX 2018.

Near the end of Anime Expo; Funimation and LootCrate collaborated on an AX Afterparty held at the Globe Theater in Downtown Los Angeles during the night of Day 3.

Attendees able to receive a free goodie bag which contained Loot Crate exclusives

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There were so many things that went down at this year’s anime. From newly produced anime series to exclusive Anime Expo events and merchandise. If you missed out this year, don’t worry, Anime Expo will be back in 2019! Tickets are now on sale! For now enjoy our entire Anime Expo 2018 photoset:

Special Thanks to:

  • Anime Expo & Anime Expo Press Staff
  • The Anime Pls Team
  • Cosplayer, Mystic Taku
  • Luis Alexander &
  • My wonderful assistant, Vincent Reyes

Author’s Note:

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This year’s Anime Expo was special mainly because we, My assistant & I, attended AX as Press, which was such an honor! We hope to attend next year as Press as well. Unfortunately, I got very ill between Day 0 – Day 2 and although we were able to take photos and film, I wasn’t able to fully capture everything I wanted at AX nor accomplish. During Day 3, I was feeling much better, we ended up filming the last day of AX, alongside, interviewing awesome cosplayers! I hope you enjoyed our mini AX video (found above) and I’ll personally bring you much more Anime Con coverage beginning with ANIMANGA 2018 coming this August!

Ronin-Expo 2018

Ronin-Expo was held on June 02 of 2018, at  the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles.

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So what is Ronin-Expo, you may ask? Ronin-Expo is a celebration of Asian culture, this includes anime, video games, movies, & even a bit history of Japan itself. What makes this expo so interesting though, is the fact that it’s in the center of Little Tokyo district in the city of angels (Los Angeles). This makes it a diverse spot for Ronin Expo to be in, as attendees can further explore Little Tokyo by visiting the surrounding museums and local restaurants.


Here are some more pictures from the event including: cosplayers, event guests, attendees and staff members.

Felt like you missed out? Don’t worry, Ronin Expo will return spring 2019, so mark your calendars and take a trip to Little Tokyo, Los Angeles & make sure to stop by Ronin-Expo!

See you at the next Con/Expo!

 

Interview with: SARAH WILLIAMS

As we attend RONIN-EXPO 2018, we had the pleasure of interviewing voice actress, Sara Williams! [Don’t forget to check out our related giveaway, details below!]

banner01You may recognize her voice as, Jinx (League of Legends), Midari Ikishima (Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler), Peacock (SkullGirls), Lisbeth / Rika Shinozaki (Sword Art Online series), Nonon Jakuzure (Kill La Kill), Berserker of Black (Fate/Apocrypha) & most recently as Felix Argyle (RE: Zero)

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Me & Sarah Williams during the interview

Watch as Sarah speaks about her career and how she voice a few of her most recent characters:


Felix Argyle Giveaway!

Thanks for reading/watching our interview with Sarah Williams, now here’s your chance to WIN an autographed print of Felix Argyle!

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All you have to do is, leave a comment on the interview video & subscribe to our YouTube Channel! Refer to our Giveaway rules for more information.

DEADLINE IS JULY 1ST 2018

Special thanks to RONIN-EXPO & Danny Gonzalez for the opportunity to attend RONIN EXPO!

Aggretsuko’s Den of Rage: Why do you like Aggretsuko?

Since the beginning of Aggretsuko Den of Rage event, we’ve been covering the event as it took place in Little Tokyo in Los Angeles, CA!

On the last day of the event, May 28th 2018, we asked seven different Aggretsuko fans about their love for the METAL red panda, Watch our video, maybe you can relate:

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Til’ next time, Aggretsuko…

Aggretsuko X Amoeba Music

Aggretsuko collaborated at hollywood’s iconic music store, Amoeba Music!DSC_0256(2)

All attendees received Aggretsuko SWAG plus whatever fans bought: Amoeba X Aggretsuko shirt OR Amoeba tote bag:

Here’s our photoset + small event video:

Want to meet AGGRETSUKO?

Aggretsuko’s DEN of RAGE has been EXTENDED!!! The RAGE will continue at Sanrio Japanese Village until 5/28/18!!! More information here.

AGGRETSUKO APPEARANCE DETAILS: 
-Friday, May 25th – 6pm to 9:30pm
-Saturday, May 26th – 12pm to 4:30pm
-Sunday, May 27th – 12pm to 4:30pm

Aggretsuko’s Den Of Rage (ONGOING Event!) *EVENT EXTENDED*

Aggretsuko made another LIVE appearance, in Little Tokyo’s Sanrio store in Los Angeles.

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As you may remember, Aggretsuko debuted in 2015 and quickly became a sensation! She made her first LIVE appearance in Los Angeles on September of 2017.

In honor of Aggretsuko newest Netflix series, Little Tokyo’s Japanese village Sanrio store set up an ‘office’ pop up with Aggretsuko herself in furson!

 

One the first of the event, attendees were given this holographic limited edition pin:

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MISSED OUT? EVENT is still ongoing, check the dates below!

Check our photoset from the event:

 

I was reunited with my favorite metal girl:

 

AFTER MAY 12TH Aggretsuko will NOT be making an appearance at Little Tokyo’s Sanrio store, however, the pop-up office will still be there until MAy 16th alongside limited official Aggretsuko merch!

DEN OF RAGE event has been extended through May 28th! New Aggretsuko appearance dates are as follows:
-Friday, May 25th – 6pm to 9:30pm
-Saturday, May 26th – 12pm to 4:30pm
-Sunday, May 27th – 12pm to 4:30pm

Click here to find out more! 


WANT MORE?

In collaboration with Amoeba Music, Aggretsuko will be making a special appearance at Hollywood’s Amoeba Music store & its San Francisco store ON MAY 17TH & 19TH:

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HOLD ON, THERE’S A CATCH! 

In order to meet & take a photo with Aggretsuko, you must purchase the Aggretsuko X Amoeba Music Package:

Package: $30 each (limited to two packages per person) includes:

  • ** Limited edition Aggretsuko x Amoeba live screen printed t-shirt or tote bag. =Choose from two exclusive Aggretsuko x Amoeba designs and colors!
  • **Aggretsuko Lanyard
  • ** Aggretsuko Sticker
  • ** Meet and snap a photo with Aggretsuko herself in “rage mode

SEE YOU GUYS THERE!

For more information, please refer to the Amoeba Music event page on Facebook.

Aggretsuko’s DEN of RAGE

Aggretsuko IS COMING BACK TO LITTLE TOKYO, LOS ANGELES!

Hosted by Sanrio Japanese Village store, Aggretsuko will be making an appearance once more from May 4 – May 16 2018 May 28th 2018 (Event has been EXTENDED, more info here). 

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Beginning Friday, May 4th at Sanrio Japanese Village until Wednesday, May 16th, enter this Sanrio pop-up for first dibs on a limited inventory of official Aggretsuko merch, photo ops and appearances from Aggretsuko herself!

     AGGRETSUKO APPEARANCE DETAILS:
– Friday, May 4th – all day 11 am to 10 pm
– Saturday, May 5th – 12 pm to 4 pm
– Saturday, May 12th – 12pm to 4 pm

More information can be found on the event page here.

Blend-S: A New STARBUCKS-like Anime?!

Not quite, BETTER.

From the mind behind “Spirits & Cat Ears”, Miyuki Nakayama, comes:

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BLEND-S

Blend-S is combination of Starbucks & a Japanese Maid Cafe. It tells the story of high school student, maikaMaika Sakuranomiya who is having trouble finding a part time job due to her scary and creepy smile, which often leads people to believe she’s a sadist.

 

 

 

Maika later finds herself hired as waitress by a scout/manager of an Italian owned coffee shop, Cafe Stile. However,  Cafe Stile isn’t your average coffee shop. Each waitress (or barista) is given a different ‘fetish’ to serve their costumers with, such as: Tsundere, Imouto, Oneesan & Idol. Since Maika has a unquie ‘sadist‘ smile she was assigned as a sadist barista.04

Although she develops an aggressive and dominate persona, she actually pretty clumsy and shy at times. The series debuted as a manga in Houbunsha’s Manga Time Kirara Carat magazine in 2013, and Nakayama launched it as a regular series in 2014. The anime is just premiered this October and you stream it on CrunchyRoll.

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Maika Sakuranomiya

 

 

Maika is a 16-year-old girl who, because of how scary she looks when smiling, often causes misunderstandings, leading other people to think that she is a sadist, even though she is actually just clumsy. Her looks catch the attention of Dino who scouts her to be the ‘sadistic girl’ waitress at cafe Stile. She comes from a very traditional family and works part time so she could study abroad using her own money.

 

 

 

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Kaho Hinata

 

 

Kaho is a 17-year-old waitress who fulfills the tsundere trait. She loves playing video games and often goes to an arcade, but often runs out of money because of it. Although she plays a tsunderegirl, Kaho’s real personality is not tsundere and like Maika, has to learn to becomes one. She is currently the most popular waitress at Stile.

 

 

 

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Mafuyu Hoshikawa

 

 

Mafuyu is one of the waitresses that, despite of her petite figure, is actually a 20-year-old college student and fulfills the younger sister trait because of that. Her real personality is mature and she rarely shows emotion. She has a younger brother who is taller than her and has always wanted a younger sister, although she will not include Kaho because of Kaho’s body figure.*

 

 

 

 

To honor the series, Aniplex USA & Los Angeles cafe shop, Cafe Dulce collaborated on a two day event.
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This collaboration took place in the Little Tokyo district in Los Angeles.

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Cafe Dulce celebrated the series by giving out FREE Maika decorated donuts with every purchase.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Along side this cute donuts, they also gave out Blend-S Coasters and mini poster.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check these photos from the event

Thanks for checking out our Blend-S post, if want to find out Which BLEND-S Character Will Be Your Waitress, take this awesome test, and in the words of Maika:

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Aggretsuko’s 1st U.S. Appearance !

On January 2017 SANRIO announced their newest character, Aggretsuko (アグレッシブ烈子)!

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Although the character debuted in 2015, Aggretsuko began appearing on social media in early 2017 & it seems she quickly found fame among Hello kitty fans.

Aggretsuko, according SANRIO’s official site, is a 25 year old, red panda who works as a office worker with anger issues. Her YouTube shorts tell her daily life, working in an office dealing with the daily annoyances that happen. When her patience is up, she goes on full blown HEAVY METAL RAGE! Check her out here:

More episodes can be viewed here

In the recent months since her appeared on social media, she has gotten a huge following, much like GUDETAMA back in 2013.

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She recently made her first U.S. Appearance at the newly re-opened Sanrio store in Little Tokyo in Los Angeles!

Along with new Aggretsuko merchandise. Aggretsuko merchandise can also be bought on the official site.

Judging by her popularity, there might more Aggretsuko themed events coming soon!

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(c) SANRIO 2017

Who YOUR favorite SANRIO character? Comment below!