Saturday, August 07, 2010

Yuuki Aoi At Live Event For New Shaft/Shinbou Anime

I guess Shinbou Akiyuki liked Yuuki Aoi's work in Vampire Bund, since he has now cast her as co-star in his new anime, to come out this fall: Soredemo Machi wa Mawatteiru.

There was a live event Saturday at the "TBS Anime Festa" put on by Tokyo Broadcasting System TV. In her blog, Aoi says she cosplayed as her character in the show -- a maid in a maid cafe. Pictures when I find them.

The show is based on a fairly crazy comedy manga. It will star Omigawa Chiaki (Maka in Soul Eater, the judo club president in Seitokai Yakuindomo) as a clumsy but straightforward and enthusiastic waitress in a quite odd maid cafe. Imagine a 16-year-old Yotsuba. Ao-chan is her co-worker, classmate, love rival, and bossy friend.

Here is Ao-chan's Saturday post:

This is really Yuuki today!
I appeared at the TBS Anime Festa \(^O^)/
I did maid cosplay at the Soremachi stage event ////

(giggle) - stuff like cosplay gets me a bit excited (*^^*ゞ
Ever since my high school festival, cosplay gives me a festival feeling!
Actually, it's the first time I've had my nails done for an event (^^)
Thank you very much to everyone who came out!
And to have people even call out my name made me so happy m(__)m
Everyone who couldn't make it out today,
please be sure to support Soremachi\(^O^)/
There are some really great gags in it \(^O^)/
I hope I can help everyone share some laughter\(^O^)/

That "giggle" is "ufufu" in the original Japanese.

Ao-chan is now slated to appear in three fall anime for sure, with the possibility of two more: Soredemo Machi wa Mawatteiru; Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls; The World God Only Knows; and possibly a new season of Yumeiro Patissiere, and the new Pokemon series.

Posters on 2channel call her "the next-generation star." There was a funny series of posts just now in her 2channel thread. One guy said she was the #1 seiyuu he'd want for a daughter. Then someone said she was the #1 seiyuu he'd want to impregnate. Then a third poster said she was the #1 seiyuu he'd like to make a Gundam model with.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Another New Voice From Yuuki Aoi in New PSP Game, "Blue Roses"

Yuuki Aoi gives us another new kind of voice in the upcoming PSP fantasy role-playing game, Blue Roses: Fairy and Blue-eyed Warriors.

Aoi's character, Pollu, is a very shy supposed twelve-year-old who always has a fox stuffed-animal in her arms. Aoi gives her an exaggeratedly shy and hesitant voice.

Aoi's specialty is more genki girls. This extremely shy character is a departure for her. I wouldn't have said it was something she could do -- she has too much strength in her voice. But by slowing down, with long pauses, and putting her energy into nuances of expression, perhaps she just manages. Her job here is to create an image rather than a drama, after all.

Other seiyuu in the game include Kitamura Eri, Kaji Yuuki, Mariko Honda (Kurimu in Seitokai no Ichizon), Maeno Tomoaki, Ise Mariya, and Sasaki Nozomi.

You can hear Aoi's voice by going to the official site, clicking on "Characters" at the bottom of the page, then on the next page clicking on the character I show outlined in red in the first image below:

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Tamayura -- New Anime by ARIA Director Previews Sept. 5

Rising moe voice Taketatsu Ayana (Azu-nyan in K-On) will star in Tamayura, a new OVA series by the director of ARIA, Satou Junichi.

The "healing" slice-of-life anime is slated to come out next January, but there will be a preview broadcast of episode one on 5 September on Japanese satellite channel AT-X.

For her first year of high school, Sawatari Fu moves to Takehara, a scenic old town near Hiroshima, on the Inland Sea.

Her father, who has passed away, grew up in Takehara. She loves taking photographs with his old film camera, a Rollei 35S.

This "healing anime" follows her and the friends who gather around her as she comes to love her new home.

Co-starring with Aya-nyan are Asumi Kana (Poplar in Working!!), Iguchi Yuka (Index), and Gibu Yuuko (Akira in Sweet Blue Flowers).

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Summer 2010 Anime: Shiki and the Rest

Now that we have had 3-5 episodes of the new anime series, my impressions are clearer than they were after the first episodes.

My top show is definitely Shiki. Beautiful and weird, maintaining the kind of high esthetic level that House of Five Leaves did last season -- also in the Thursday evening noitaminA time-slot. The character design, visual invention, and background music are outstanding.

And by episode four, the story begins to give us some shocks. But this is less a show for the thrill of fear than for slow and inexorable tragedy, which it will have 22 episodes to immerse us in.

Yuuki Aoi does it again, with a striking performance as Sunako: she plays her like a dark, mysterious version of Yumeiro Patissiere's very bright and open Ichigo. Is her chattering otherworldly laugh cute, eery, or both? But it is the mellow tones of Ohkawa Tohru, who plays the doctor trying to unravel the mystery, that carry the show.

Seitokai Yakuindomo's outlandish humor continues to please. I love the student council members' innocent salaciousness. Hikasa Youko proves she is a comic star, and that her meteoric rise is no fluke. Yahagi Sayuri proves that you can rise to stardom slowly, too, building gradually upward from a firm foundation of skill.

We have come to the end of the first four-episode arc of Amagami SS and have begun the second, moving from capricious senior Haruka (Itou Shizuka) to rambunctious childhood friend Kaoru (Satou Rina). Each arc portrays a complete relationship with the protagonist, and we will see him follow six alternative romances before the show ends in December. The two girls so far have been fascinating and well-portrayed.

Yuuki Aoi To Star In New Pokemon Series?

Sharp-eared Yuuki Aoi fans on 2channel are already congratulating her for nabbing a not-yet-announced major role in the new Pokemon series -- Pokemon Best Wishes -- starting this fall.

In a brief preview seen on Japanese TV, we hear Ao-chan's vocal bounce and cadence -- or a good imitation of it -- in the voice of Iris, Ash's new companion.

Getting a major role in a long-running perennial top-ten anime would definitely be another step into the big time for Ao-chan. The current Pokemon series, Diamond and Pearl, has been running on TV for four years, and has produced four films, as well.

Ao-chan would be acting alongside a cast of veteran successful seiyuu, from whom she would learn a lot. It's where she belongs. The fullness, inventiveness, and controlled energy in her voice will impress them from the start.

I'm not counting her chickens until they're announced, however. I personally can't be 100% sure it is her in the clip. But 2channelers are already congratulating her on the role.

The image is Iris, the new character. And below is the TV clip, from YouTube: