Thursday, February 17, 2011

Yuuki Aoi's Eyebrows

Japanese fans comment on how prominent Yuuki Aoi's eyebrows are. Sometimes to poke fun, sometimes to say they look good.

It appears that Ao-chan herself has accepted this as part of her image. In a recent magazine feature, she includes her own drawing of herself, emphasizing the eyebrows (right).

This is one in a series called "Aoi's a-i-u-e-o." "A-i-u-e-o" are the first five letters of the Japanese syllabic alphabet. This particular week's feature was based on the letter "su," the first letter in "supootsu" (sports), and includes photos of her dressed for tennis (see bottom of page). She has said before that sports is not her thing.

Now, her eyebrows aren't all that prominent, as you will see from the photos that follow. But they are sufficiently prominent that she almost always wears her bangs long enough to cover them.

In their fairly gross way, some 2channel posters have speculated on the amount of hair elsewhere on her body.

Anyway, here are some photos showing her eyebrows:

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Hirano Aya in New 3D Animated Film

Aya has mentioned in her blog that she has a role in the new 3D animated film "Tofu Kozou" ("Little Tofu Monk").

It is about a little youkai (Japanese monster) who is always carrying around a dish of tofu, and is incapable of scaring anybody. He is sealed up in a shrine during the Edo Period and emerges 200 years later in modern Tokyo.

The cast is mainly made up of TV and film actors and actresses doing their first seiyuu work. Aya plays the human girl who accompanies the monsters around the city.

The film is slated to be in theatres in April.

Other actors in the film include Fukuda Kyouko, Takeda Tetsuya, Matsudaira Ken, and Koike Teppei. I'm not familiar with the names of many drama actors, but these all have long lists of drama and movie credits. In any case, Aya is credited sixth, despite having what seems like a fairly major role.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Yuuki Aoi: Four Years of One Skirt

I always think it's a good indication of seiyuus' low status in the celebrity world when I see them wearing their own clothes at events, rather than being supplied with outfits.

The recent Gosick special is another example: Yuuki Aoi is wearing a skirt she has worn since at least November 2006. I'm not being critical. I love it when people are able to look good economically.

Anyway, here are the photos. First, at home in November, 2006 (age 14):

Next, in early 2010, with Saitou Chiwa at a Vampire Bund event (almost 18):

Seiyuu Video: Yuuki Aoi, Shitaya Noriko, Eguchi Takuya (Gosick)

Wonderful little clip from Monday night's TV broadcast featuring the stars of Gosick: Yuuki Aoi (Victorica), Eguchi Takuya (Kujou), and Shitaya Noriko (Avril).

Ao-chan shows how much she has grown up in the past year of professional success and going to college. She basically runs the show, and slips into Victorica's voice and personality at one point for a humorous put-down of Eguchi-san. As a NicoNico commentator says: "She's really S, isn't she?" S as in sadistic.

Here's the clip, from NicoNico Douga. Click the three dots in the lower right corner to toggle the comments on/off.

They begin by saying who they are and which character they play. Asked to describe the attraction of Gosick, Eguchi says he is a big fan of the novels, and that it is a thrill to see them come to life.

Shitaya-san says that Sakuraba-sensei, the author, has said how moved she was to see her characters moving around on the screen. Then she laughs at Eguchi for not looking at her while she talked.

He says he didn't mean anything by it and gets all flustered. Ao-chan slips into Victorica (around 1:25) to put him down for worrying about such inconsequential things.

Favorite Current Anime OP/EDs

When this season started, I thought the theme music might rival spring 2009 (Requiem for the Phantom, Hanasakeru Shounen, Pandora Hearts, Souten Kouro, K-On, etc.). Well, it isn't quite that good, but I'm still enjoying a number of OP/EDs.

Here are my favorites -- for the music, for the animation, and/or for good synergy between the two. Not the "best," by whatever definition, but just what I'm most enjoying.

1. Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica ED "Magia"

sung by: Kalafina
music, lyrics: Kajiura Yuki
animation: Suzuki Hirofumi
Strong music matched to strong animation. A memorable, atmospheric ending theme that fits perfectly with this bizarre anime. The best online version I could find is overlaid with three sets of subs: Japanese, romanized Japanese, and Spanish. But you can still see the video behind them.

Sunday, February 13, 2011