To promote the Tokyo Olympics in 2020, Facebook's Official Olympic Channel has announced a group of official --- albeit fictional --- ambassadors from some of Japan's most beloved pop-cultural exports, including Sailor Moon, Naruto, Dragon Ball Z's Goku, Osamu Tezuka's Astro Boy, and more. And yes, they will be on the merch.
Dragon Ball Z
This upcoming July 4 weekend, there'll be fireworks and hot dogs galore across America. And if you're in Los Angeles, you'll be seeing those amidst a sea of Hatsune Miku wigs and people blaring J-pop from their phones at Anime Expo.
The largest anime con in America --- and easily one of the largest American cons period --- Anime Expo takes place from July 1-4 at the LA Convention Center. Like any good convention, there's a wealth of exclusives. Bluefin has announced its exclusives are Gundam model kits and products --- or "Gunpla" as some call it --- as well as two brand-new figurines of Super Saiyan Goku and Final Form Frieza.
Viz Media has announced that it will continuing its efforts to republish all of Akira Toriyama's Dragon Ball manga in lavish, oversized, full-color editions with the first volume of the legendary Freeza Arc, available in print and digital on May 3.
The classic storyline, which initially ran from 1990-1991, sees Gohan, Krillin and Bulma head to the planet Namek to find Dragon Balls to revive their friends. They learn that the all-powerful alien warlord Freeza is after them --- as is the terrifying Vegeta --- and the hunt is on.
Although cosplay has been present for decades within the comics, anime, and sci-fi/fantasy fandoms, social media has played an integral role in the thriving communities of costuming that exist, such as Cosplay.com and the Superhero Costuming Forum. Over the years, the cosplay community has evolved into a creative outlet for many fans to establish and showcase some impressive feats of homemade disguise, craftsmanship, and sartorial superheroics at conventions.
In honor of the caped crusaders of the convention scene, ComicsAlliance has created Best Cosplay Ever (This Week), an ongoing collection of some of the most impeccable, creative, and clever costumes that we’ve discovered and assembled into a super-showcase of pure fan-devoted talent.
The ubiquity of Dragon Ball series and films make it feel as if Goku and co. never really left, but the Z Fighters (Or is it GT? Are there names?) are finally back in an official capacity after nearly two decades. Production has officially begun on a new Japanese series Dragon Ball Super, picking up where the prior series of films left off.
Wednesday's links are all yours, after the jump.
Today marks 22 years since Dr. Gero and his Androids attacked Earth in Akira Toriyama's Dragon Ball manga and its Dragon Ball Z anime adaptation. Thanks to a time-traveling Trunks untold humans, Namekians and Saiyans were spared a grisly fate in age 767 at 10 a.m. Still, it can't hurt to keep an eye out for two old-looking cyborg guys and/or three teens with edgy '90s earrings nonetheless -- especially if you live in South City. Remember, you won't be able to sense their chi and they absorb energy attacks through their hands. Your best bet to ID a potential android is to know its human name. Hopefully you've been training in 300 times Earth's normal gravity or at least have some Senzu beans saved up.
Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama is on a roll lately when it comes to expanding the lore of his 42-volume manga series. On top of completing his latest manga, Jaco the Galactic Patrolman and a 12-page Dragon Ball/Dragon Ball Z prelude story known as Dragon Ball Minus, the creator recently provided siblings Android 17 and Android 18 with some added backstory (and epilogue) in a Q&A in Shueisha's Saikyō Jump.
Earlier this month the latest entry into Akira Toriyama's Dragon Ball canon arrived in the April 7th issue of Shonen Jump, officially tying together the creator's most beloved series with his recently completed (and potentially final solo) work Jaco the Galactic Patrolman. Dubbed Dragon Ball Minus, the 16-page tale spells out DB protagonist Goku's alien origins and how his doomed parents sent him to Earth, the planet readers meet him in-progress many years-- and a personality-altering head injury -- later in the pages of the original Dragon Ball manga. The hook here is that the story shows Goku's mother Gine for the first time while cementing that Jaco and Dragon Ball take place in the same universe.
Was this story necessary? Not at all. Will you like it anyway? Totally. It looks great, never takes itself too seriously (or seriously at all!) and feels like Toriyama is merely picking up where he left off.
Get a look at this morning's links, after the jump.