Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Hyakka Ryouran DVD/BD Event -- Yuuki Aoi, Kugimiya Rie, Gotou Saori

The first DVD-BluRay volume of Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls came out last Thursday. The Sunday before, there was a commemorative event at Kameido Camellia Hall in Tokyo. (click images to enlarge)

Yuuki Aoi (Juubei), Kugimiya Rie (Sanada), and Gotou Saori (Hanzou) spoke about their roles and the show and interacted with the audience of about 400. They each wore a different style: Yuuki seemed almost over-dressed with her slight gothic lolita look; Kugyu was the relaxed onee-san, in a voluminous shift; and fey beauty Saorin showed the most leg and decolletage, which wasn't much.

Mizuhara Kaori (Gisen) introduced the show. Kugyu started out by saying: "Today's venue doesn't lend itself to much excitement, so let's just be at home here and relax."

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Yuuki Aoi and Yabusaki Aoi

Yuuki Aoi, autumn 2010 19
Most Japanese sources1 accept as fact that 18-year-old voice actress Yuuki Aoi 悠木碧 is the same person as child performer Yabusaki Aoi 八武崎碧, who had roles in film, TV, and anime between 2000 and 2007.

But as of right now, neither Wikipedia2 nor Anime News Network3 makes the association. They still require proof.

My purpose here is to lay out the best evidence available that Yuuki Aoi and Yabusaki Aoi are the same person. I believe the evidence is strong.


The main evidence is the fact that both Yuuki-san's agency's site and her personal site credit her with roles that were credited at the time to Yabusaki Aoi.

For instance, the role of Yumeno Koto in Onegai My Melody (2005) is credited to Yabusaki Aoi on the show's official site's characters page4, but listed both on Yuuki Aoi's own site's "works" page5 and on her agency's site6 as part of her body of work.

The same is true of the role of Marika in Aishiteruze Baby (2004) (official site cast list7).

Radio show

In fact, there is a strong possibility that Yabusaki Aoi is Yuuki Aoi's real name. She said herself recently that her real surname is Yabusaki. Here is an audio clip from episode three of the Hyakka Ryouran Radio Girls8 radio show, broadcast on 15 October 2010: