Archive for April, 2013

'Poppy Hill' pops up at Pearlridge

By
April 27th, 2013



Now at Kahala AND Pearlridge!So. Remember my last post, where I speculated that From Up on Poppy Hill was winding down its run at the Kahala 8 theaters? Thanks to the sharp eyes of tag-team partner in fandom Wilma J., who was scanning through her Facebook news feed today, we've since learned that the film's actually expanded its local reach, adding a second screen in the Pearlridge West 16 theater complex. This may come in handy for some of you for whom the drive to Kahala may be a bit too much of a grind (*waves at frequent commenter Animatsuri*).

Via Fandango, here are your Pearlridge showtimes from Sunday through Thursday:

Sunday: 10:50 a.m. and 1, 3:10 and 5:20 p.m.
Monday through Thursday: Noon, 2:10 and 4:20 p.m.

And here's your online ticket link.

One other note that may make people's ears perk up a bit: Wilma's friend noted that the film was in Japanese, presumably with English subtitles. Take this as an unconfirmed rumor for now; we're not sure if all of these screenings offer what's arguably been the top wish of everyone I've talked to who's already seen it ("Yeah, it was good, buuuuut … I really wish I could've heard the original soundtrack …"). Wilma may be going on Sunday to check it out for herself, so if there are any updates, we'll be sure to let you know.

Update, 9:55 p.m.: Japanese subbed version confirmed! Thanks, Jeff!

The Cel Shaded Report, 4/26: Shirt tales

By
April 26th, 2013



One of the things I was sadly negligent in talking about in this space in the past few weeks was the nemu*nemu custom Gelaskins order that Kimonokitsy Studios -- artist Audra Furuichi and husband Scott Yoshinaga -- was running. I actually bought a few -- some for technology I don't even have yet, but which I'm planning to buy in the next few weeks! -- and threw one of 'em on when it arrived earlier this week, and then ... well, if you saw what happened over on Facebook when the nemu*nemu plushie foursome arrived at the office, you can kinda guess what happened next.

Yes, Anpan and Nemu got their paws on a Gelaskinned Nintendo DSi XL.

Anpan & Nemu with DSi XL

Anpan & Nemu with DSi XL-interior

And yes, that's the camera app that they're playing with. Here's the proof from their perspective.

Heyos!

... and yes, I am such a dork for taking the time to take pictures like this. But that's okay. My inner child and I have been BFFs for ... well, pretty much my entire otaku journalism career.

The reason I bring up this story is because Audra and Scott are gathering orders for another custom print job -- not Gelaskins this time, but Spreadshirt T-shirts. That design above, their "7th Anniversary" style? That's the newest design to be added to a stack that also includes King of Pizza Anpan, Danish Donut King Nemu and Galaxy Explorer Enchilada. Those join several other online-exclusive designs in a variety of colors, in styles for men, women, children and toddlers. So you definitely have options.

Group orders will be accepted through May 3; visit ow.ly/ksUwn for details on how to order. In case you're reading this post after May 3, you can order directly at nemunemu.spreadshirt.com.

The last days of 'Poppy Hill'

New movie poster image! This is hanging in the hallway outside the Kahala 8 Theaters. And yes, that really IS a "Coming Soon" sign underneath. Even though, y'know, it's been playing for almost a week now.I've been talking about From Up on Poppy Hill for several weeks now, encouraging people to go out and see it before, well, they can't, considering the only legitimate home video option for the film to date is a Region 2 DVD with English subtitles, currently selling for about $47 on CDJapan. (Then again, considering how much Aniplex USA wants $89.98 for the Madoka Magica movies on Blu-ray at Right Stuf and Namco Bandai wants $54.99 for each one of three Idolm@ster games on iOS, perhaps that's a relative bargain.)

We're heading into week 4 of Poppy Hill screenings at the Kahala 8 theaters, and given the sharp cutback in the number of screenings, I feel fairly confident in saying that these will probably be your last chances of seeing this movie for a while. There are only 14 screenings over the week -- less than half the number we saw these past three weeks -- and if you were hoping to catch it at night, it looks like you've missed that opportunity.

Courtesy of Fandango, here are the showtimes:

Today and Saturday: 10:30 a.m. and 12:40 p.m.
Sunday: 12:40 p.m.
Monday through Thursday: 12:30 a.m. and 2:40 p.m.

As usual, here's your online ticket link. I'm running a bit short on time in writing this post, so my full reflections on Poppy Hill and where it stands in the grand Ghibli canon are going to have to wait a few days. They are coming soon, though! (I hope, anyway. If office workloads are favorable. Fingers crossed.)

Ota-cool incoming!

Monster Drawing Workshop: April has been the month to learn how to design your own manga characters (courtesy of Hachi Maru Hachi artist Tara Tamayori) and how to add manga faces to them (courtesy of MangaBento). To put a neat little bow on things, perhaps you'd like to learn how to create your own monsters to harass your manga creations (or befriend them, because hey, it's your story)? Comic Jam Hawaii has you covered in this free workshop at Aiea Library. Paper, pencils and crayons will be provided, or bring your own art supplies if you wish. Recommended for ages 8 and older. 1 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

MangaBento: This group of anime- and manga-inspired artists usually meets every second and fourth Sunday of the month at the Honolulu Museum of Art School (1111 Victoria St., room 200). Visit www.manga-bento.com. Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Anime Manga Society at UH-Manoa: Meets every Thursday and Friday in Kuykendall Hall, room 305. Catch Cyborg 009, Kuroko no Basket and Hanasaku Iroha on Thursdays, or Magi, Psycho Pass and Toriko on Fridays. Social time/announcements 4:30 p.m.: screenings 5 to 7 p.m.

Free Comic Book Day: The name pretty much says it all. Full details coming in next week's Cel Shaded Report, but for now, let's just say that there will be costumed characters aplenty, possibly at a library near you. May 4.

Comic Jam Hawaii: This group of collaborative cartoon artists meets every first and third Sunday of the month at Pearlridge Center; locations within the mall may vary. Visit www.facebook.com/groups/ComicJamHawaii (Facebook login required). Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. May 5.

Future attractions

Maui Matsuri: Annual Japanese festival held on the University of Hawaii-Maui College campus. May 11.

Tomo-E-Ame: Friends-Drawings-Candy: MangaBento's 2013 exhibit at the Honolulu Museum of Art School, June 16-July 14.

Taku Taku Matsuri: A summer festival with an anime/manga slant at Hawaii Kotohira Jinsha-Hawaii Dazaifu Tenmangu. Aug. 25.

Oni-Con Hawaii: With guest Yuko Ashizawa, a fashion designer with Atelier Pierrot. Also featuring the Cosplay Chess Brigade and Yu x Me Maid Cafe & Host Club. Preregistration open now; $35 for a three-day pass. Hawai'i Convention Center, Nov. 1-3.

Kawaii Kon 2014: Guests include voice actors Michael Sinterniklaas and Stephanie Sheh. Preregistration opens Wednesday. Hawai'i Convention Center, April 4-6, 2014.

The Cel Shaded Report, 4/19: 'Sparrow's Hotel,' the review

By
April 18th, 2013



Kawaii Kon 2013 was only a handful of hours old on March 15 when Keith Kawamura, Crunchyroll senior brand manager, gave con-goers a world-exclusive announcement: Sparrow's Hotel would be making its way to the streaming anime site. You may recall that I posted this picture from that particular event.

IMG_1172

sparrow's hotel promo imageFast forward a month and a few days, and the first two episodes of Sparrow's Hotel have, indeed, been posted. Second episode just went up for premium subscribers around the middle of this week, in fact. (By the way, I've had a few guest passes for 48-hour premium membership trials sitting around in my account for a little while now, so ... here, here and here. Let other people know in comments if you take one. Thanks.)

So how much of a significant announcement did this turn out being? I felt like there needed to be some sort of payoff, so I sat through those first two episodes ... and presented here, for your convenience, is the in-depth review that I feel this series deserves.

Today’s profile: Sparrow's Hotel, episodes 1-2
Recommended age: Older teen 16+
Availability: Currently streaming on crunchyroll.com

Sparrow's Hotel is quick and pointless.***

'Poppy Hill' extended a week (again)

New movie poster image! This is hanging in the hallway outside the Kahala 8 Theaters. And yes, that really IS a "Coming Soon" sign underneath. Even though, y'know, it's been playing for almost a week now.Fandango's weekly update came a few days later than the past two weeks -- Thursday instead of Tuesday -- but for those of you who still haven't made it out to see From Up on Poppy Hill, the newest Studio Ghibli film localized for the U.S., there's now a third week's worth of screenings at the Kahala 8 theaters. Come to think of it, it's a great opportunity to double-dip and see this movie again, especially considering there has yet to be any announcement of a U.S. home video release. There are a few minor adjustments in screening times, but the number of screenings between today and next Thursday remains the same, at 33. Tickets are available online via Fandango. Screenings:

Today and Saturday: 10:50 a.m. and 12:55, 3, 5:05, 7:10 and 9:20 p.m.
Sunday: 10:50 a.m. and 12:55, 3, 5:05, and 7:10 p.m.
Monday through Thursday: 11:30 a.m. and 2, 4:20 and 7:10 p.m.

Ota-cool incoming!

Anime Manga Society at UH-Manoa: Meets every Thursday and Friday in Kuykendall Hall, room 305. Catch Cyborg 009, Kuroko no Basket and Hanasaku Iroha on Thursdays, or Magi, Psycho Pass and Toriko on Fridays. Social time/announcements 4:30 p.m.: screenings 5 to 7 p.m.

Comic Jam Hawaii: This group of collaborative cartoon artists meets every first and third Sunday of the month at Pearlridge Center; locations within the mall may vary. Visit www.facebook.com/groups/ComicJamHawaii (Facebook login required). Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.

MangaBento: This group of anime- and manga-inspired artists usually meets every second and fourth Sunday of the month at the Honolulu Museum of Art School (1111 Victoria St., room 200). Visit www.manga-bento.com. Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. April 28.

Future attractions

Free Comic Book Day: The name pretty much says it all. Of course, there will probably be other things going on as well. May 4.

Maui Matsuri: Annual Japanese festival held on the University of Hawaii-Maui College campus. May 11.

Tomo-E-Ame: Friends-Drawings-Candy: MangaBento's 2013 exhibit at the Honolulu Museum of Art School, June 16-July 14.

Taku Taku Matsuri: A summer festival with an anime/manga slant at Hawaii Kotohira Jinsha-Hawaii Dazaifu Tenmangu. Aug. 25.

Oni-Con Hawaii: With guest Yuko Ashizawa, a fashion designer with Atelier Pierrot. Also featuring the Cosplay Chess Brigade and Yu x Me Maid Cafe & Host Club. Preregistration open now; $35 for a three-day pass. Hawai'i Convention Center, Nov. 1-3.

Kawaii Kon 2014: Guests include voice actors Michael Sinterniklaas and Stephanie Sheh. Preregistration opens May 1. Hawai'i Convention Center, April 4-6, 2014.

==========

***OK, so some of you may want a few more details about Sparrow's Hotel -- you've made it this far, past the Poppy Hill schedule and the "Ota-cool Incoming!" calendar, after all -- so here's the deal: Sparrow's Hotel is adapted from a 4-koma (four-panel comic strip style) manga by Yuka Santoh. That manga hasn't been translated into English, and, if this anime is any indication, there's probably a good reason why it hasn't been translated: It's a one-trick pony based around the fact that the hotel's newest hire, Sayuri Sato, is a gal with an ample chest who can charm guys, then beat them into submission.

There are good ways and bad ways of adapting 4-koma manga into anime series. Azumanga Daioh, Adventures of the Mini-Goddess, Lucky Star and Hetalia are some of the better ones. Poyopoyo seems like a good adaptation, too, even though I haven't seen any official translations of the manga. This series, though, has no real story flow between what's obviously a group of adapted comic strips. It's opening credits, setup, gag, setup, gag, setup, gag, repeat, end. Over here, she's instantly breaking up a fight among drunken guys. Over there, she's pulling out a keychain nestled somewhere in that ample chest of hers. People marvel about it in awe or in fear. Woo hoo.

There are some other characters besides Sayuri -- her female manager, the manager's brother, another guy voiced by past Kawaii Kon guest Daisuke Kishio -- but who really cares? They're just around to set up another gag that probably involves some combination of ample chestiness and submission beating.

Oh yes, one other thing: In the time it's taken for you to read through this entire post, you probably could have watched both episodes. They're only three minutes long, after all, 2-1/2 minutes of actual content when you factor out the opening credits. And still I want those six minutes of my life back.

A 'Journey' worth remembering

By
April 13th, 2013



journey of heroesToday’s profile: Journey of Heroes
Author: Stacey Hayashi
Illustrator: Damon Wong
Publisher: Self-published
Availability: In print & readily available at www.442comicbook.com and various retailers (refer to this list posted on Facebook)

If you grew up in Hawaii, chances are about 100% that one of things imprinted upon you in school is the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the subsequent internment of Japanese-Americans following the attack. And naturally, one of the things you also hear in conjunction with that is about the 100th Battalion and the 442nd Infantry Regiment; how they were composed of all nisei (second-generation Japanese), many of whom were from Hawaii; and how they are among the most decorated units for their size and length of service.

But something that's not often taught in schools -- at least, not in my memory, and I will say that I've been out of high school for many years now -- is what happened in the time between the Pearl Harbor attack and the creation of the 100th/442nd Regimental Combat Team and the days leading up to their entrance into actual combat. It's usually only around the anniversary of "the day that will live in infamy," Dec. 7, when we hold gatherings around the state to honor those who sacrificed themselves, that we hear the tales from the few remaining survivors about the horrors they experienced in the war. And even then, the stories can be few, with many veterans often reluctant to speak of those times.

The slim graphic novel "Journey of Heroes," written by Stacey T. Hayashi and illustrated by Damon Wong, attempts to fill in that gap. And a fine endeavor it is. (It also made me finally understand why the unit is called the "100th/442nd.")

According to a note from the author, Hayashi wanted to tell the story about the nisei units, so she met with hundreds of veterans and gathered their reminiscences with the intent of making them into a movie. Unfortunately, the difficulties of producing a film stood in the way of that project. Fortunately, this 30-page book grew out of it instead.
heroes1_small
"Journey of Heroes" is told in the first person from the perspective of an unnamed nisei soldier. (The stories, however, are based on the experiences of veteran Goro Sumida, a dear friend of Hayashi's who died last October.) It starts off in November 1944 just after the famous Vosges assault in which the 100th/442nd had been ordered to rescue a Texas unit that had become trapped behind enemy lines -- the so-called "Lost Battalion." The nisei units managed to save the Texans after several days of fighting, suffering heavy casualties in the process. And as the remaining men are standing at attention waiting to be recognized for their bravery, the narrator describes what happened up until that point and what will happen in years beyond, switching seamlessly from past to present to future while maintaining a "flashback" mode. It sounds strange as described here, but the device works well.

It's "only" 30 pages, which sounds awfully short for a graphic novel. And in one way it is, but in another way, it's interminably long as you read through the history of the 100th and 442nd, the details that most people don't often get the chance to hear about, of the pain and humiliation and struggle and the differences -- even with each other -- that they had to overcome.
Some 10,000 Japanese-Americans in Hawaii eagerly volunteered for 1,500 available spots in the military
Damon uses the "chibi" -- Japanese for "small," with the connotation of "cute" -- drawing style, one that's often used in Japanese manga. I initially had qualms about it, wondering how such an approach could effectively portray the grueling intensity of war, racism and more. However, I found that the "cuteness" of the people doesn't detract from the emotion that the simply worded narration evokes. Even the use of pidgin English is well placed, serving to show the contrast between the carefree island days and the grimness of war. Married with this are realistic, stylized backgrounds and elements taken straight from history, such as the well-known photograph of the sinking of the USS Arizona; the famous front page of the extra edition of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin declaring war on Dec. 7, 1941; the gates to 'Iolani Palace as the nisei soldiers are given a huge farewell send-off; and even smaller features such as flags, office windows and bunk beds. It all contributes to a tremendous reading experience, and I must admit I didn't expect to be moved as I much as I was when I read the book.

Even now, after having read "Journey of Heroes" multiple times, I still choke up as I can only try to imagine the hell it was. It is intense and emotional in a rather simple way, which easily reaches out and touches the reader. We can't help but share in their pain and feel great respect for the men who came out of it all and did not let the war and racism break them as they continued on with their lives.
heroes4
About half of the book is devoted to the soldiers' battles and the Vosges assault, but what made the most impression on me is the recounting of the time before their deployment to the war zone in Italy. This is the part of their story that we never hear about and that contributes even more to our admiration for them. We are finally taken behind the scenes, beyond the well-publicized heroism, and we see what they went through to even get to the point at which they went to war. We read about the family struggles, about the deep-seated prejudice that went both ways, forcing some Japanese-Americans on the mainland to sneak out so they could start their military careers, sometimes against their loved ones' wishes. We see the culture clashes when the Hawaii men meet up with mainlanders, the tension and conflicts within the units caused by different upbringings. We watch as the Hawaii and mainland soldiers are finally made to realize that it doesn't matter where they come from -- they are all Americans, they are all fighting the same war, and the enemy is not each other.

One thing that stood out at me in the entire manga was something so tiny it was easy to overlook. When discussing the values that Japanese held, the concept of "not bringing shame to the family name" was brought up. It may very well have been this ideal that led the nisei to "go for broke" and achieve more than anyone likely thought they ever would. But also, perhaps it is some kind of "shame," perhaps it is the trauma, that keeps many veterans from speaking -- both of which are understandable, and I know that I would never be able to truly comprehend what they went through that keeps them silent. We are fortunate that so many already are willing to open up and share the experiences that led to the creation of "Journey of Heroes." I hope more veterans of the proud 100th/442nd can overcome those sentiments and share their stories for the next generation and many more beyond.

The only "gripe" I have is that this graphic novel is such a small, thin volume that it could easily be passed over on the bookshelf -- it doesn't even have its name on the very narrow spine. It would be a shame if this very worthy book were lost due to mere slimness of size. I wish Hayashi much luck in raising the support and getting the help she needs to get more books out to students. Her original goal was to split the first print run of 10,000 copies in half, with 5,000 being distributed to students and libraries and another 5,000 being sold to recoup production costs. While that strategy's been a success -- so much so that a second printing's become a possibility -- production logistics are a bit of a concern, as this comment on the book's Facebook page would indicate.

From the once-happy-go-lucky times of prewar Hawaii, to the internment of Japanese-Americans, through the difficulties of finally becoming a true unit, to the Vosges rescue, to the liberation of a Jewish death camp, to the homecoming back in the islands after the war, and beyond -- this graphic novel truly takes us on the "Journey of Heroes."

If you want to learn more about "Journey of Heroes" and are a Star-Advertiser subscriber, please check out Gary Chun's profile from the March 17 issue.


The Cel Shaded Report, 4/11: Oni-Con Hawaii's first date

By
April 11th, 2013



My Wednesday night/early Thursday morning in a nutshell:

  • Went to see From Up on Poppy Hill at the Kahala 8 complex. I give it three thumbs up because newspapers play a fairly big role in the movie, and YAY NEWSPAPERS. Also, it's a great 1960s-era Japan period piece, Goro Miyazaki actually has a good story to wrap around the lingering shots of pretty scenery this time, and I really want to see it with its original Japanese soundtrack now. But YAY NEWSPAPERS.
  • Ate dinner afterward at a fairly large national chain restaurant with a large hot pepper as its logo. Checked email. Nearly choked on bite of yummy Chocolate Chip Paradise Pie upon learning that fairly major news had broken while I was watching Umi and Shun running around trying to save their school's run-down clubhouse.
  • Dashed home, fired up computer, ripped out original Cel Shaded Report topic for this week and began working on this post.

Oni-Con Hawaii logoWhat made me stay up into the wee hours of the morning: Oni-Con Hawaii, the new anime/manga/Japanese pop culture convention in town, finally revealed the dates and location for its first show. And for those of you who have developed your own sets of survival tips during Kawaii Kon weekend, get ready to put those into practice once again: Oni-Con's heading to the Hawai'i Convention Center Nov. 1-3.

The announcement ends a wait of about 1-1/2 months for that information ever since the convention first announced its existence in mid-February. Some -- your friendly neighborhood anime/manga blogger admittedly included -- might even say that the teaser period lasted too long and started drifting into "well, are you guys really going to be able to pull something together this year?" territory. Having an announcement posted on the Facebook page about those details "coming shortly" on Feb. 27, then again promising those details "within the next week" on March 27 and then not saying anything until two weeks later, has a way of raising suspicions a bit. But the past is the past, and hopefully things will be a bit smoother going forward.

A few other notes on what I know about Oni-Con, some repeats from before, other bits new:

  • Currently confirmed as appearing at the inaugural show are Atelier Pierrot designer Yuko Ashizawa, Yu x Me Maid Cafe & Host Club (which announced this week that it would be hosting an Amnesia/Alice in Wonderland-themed event) and the Cosplay Chess Brigade.
  • Three-day passes are currently available at oniconhawaii.com/registration.html at the introductory rate of $35. No telling at this point how long that's going to last, so you may want to get on that right away. Unfortunately for those of you who preregistered for HEXXP, you're going to have to preregister and pay again, then pursue a refund of your HEXXP payment through other venues, as this post details.
  • Volunteers interested in ... umm ... volunteering can email info@oniconhawaii.com. Also still in a holding pattern is the cost for, and number of, Artist Alley tables that will be available.

More news undoubtedly to come in the next few weeks. As a friend of mine is fond of saying, things are about to get pretty interesting.

'Poppy Hill' extended a week

New movie poster image! This is hanging in the hallway outside the Kahala 8 Theaters. And yes, that really IS a "Coming Soon" sign underneath. Even though, y'know, it's been playing for almost a week now.More now on Poppy Hill, the newest Studio Ghibli film localized for the U.S.: The latest weekly movie time update from Fandango has arrived. For those of you who for whatever reason couldn't make it to the first week's worth of screenings at the Kahala 8 complex, you're in luck: It'll be showing for another week, at least. There are a few minor adjustments in screening times, but the number of screenings between Friday and next Thursday remains the same, at 33. Tickets are available online via Fandango. Here are those times:

Friday and Saturday: 10:40 a.m. and 12:50, 3, 5:10, 7:20 and 9:40 p.m.
Sunday: 10:40 a.m. and 12:50, 3, 5:10 and 7:20 p.m.
Monday through Thursday: 12:45, 3, 5:10 and 7:20 p.m.

Ota-cool incoming!

"Journey of Heroes" graphic novel: If you have yet to pick up this this manga-style book chronicling the achievements of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team/100th Infantry Battalion in World War II -- and you really should get it; author Stacey Hayashi and artist Damon Wong did a great job with it -- it's available for sale at the Bishop Museum gift shop. It's a tie-in with the exhibit "American Heroes: Japanese American WWII Nisei Soldiers and the Congressional Gold Medal."

Over at the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii gift shop (2454 S. Beretania St.), you can also get the book ($10 general, $9 JCCH members), some spiffy exclusive "Chibi Wear" aloha shirts for men and women ($75, $67.50 JCCH members) or, for you DIYers, pre-cut yards (36 inches by 44 inches) of any of the three available fabric styles ($20 per yard, $18 JCCH members). Bishop Museum exhibit on display through April 17.

Anime Manga Society at UH-Manoa: Meets every Thursday and Friday in Kuykendall Hall, room 305. Catch Cyborg 009, Kuroko no Basket and Hanasaku Iroha on Thursdays, or Magi, Psycho Pass and Toriko on Fridays. Social time/announcements 4:30 p.m.: screenings 5 to 7 p.m.

Aiea Library Anime Club: Because attendees asked for it, librarian Diane Masaki is screening even more episodes of Black Butler this month at the library, 99-143 Moanalua Road. For more information or to RSVP, call 483-7333 or e-mail aiealibraryanimeclub@yahoo.com. 3 p.m. Saturday.

Manga character design workshop: Learn the basics of human anatomy and character design (and how to break those rules to develop your own style) from Tara Tamayori, the artist whose two-chapter story "Eternal Blade" is featured in the Hachi Maru Hachi anthology. Workshops will be held at the Honolulu Museum of Art School (1111 Victoria St., room 200) Cost: $15, payable to the instructor at the beginning of each session. Designed for ages 12 and up. Email peninkinfo@gmail.com or call the art school at 532-8741 if you're still interested. 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.

MangaBento: This group of anime- and manga-inspired artists usually meets every second and fourth Sunday of the month at the Honolulu Museum of Art School (1111 Victoria St.). "But wait," you say. "Isn't Tara's workshop on the same day? Doesn't MangaBento usually meet in Room 200? Where are they going to go?!?" Simple ... they'll be in Room 101. Art for everyone, yay! Visit www.manga-bento.com. Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Monster Drawing Workshop: With April being the month to learn how to design your own manga characters (courtesy of Tara) and how to add manga faces to them (courtesy of MangaBento), perhaps you'd like to learn how to create your own monsters to harass your manga creations (or befriend them, because hey, it's your story)? Comic Jam Hawaii has you covered in this free workshop at Aiea Library. Paper, pencils and crayons will be provided, or bring your own art supplies if you wish. Recommended for ages 8 and older. 1 to 3:30 p.m. April 27.

Other future attractions

Free Comic Book Day: The name pretty much says it all. Of course, there will probably be other things going on as well. May 4.

Maui Matsuri Festival: Annual Japanese festival held on the University of Hawaii-Maui College campus. May 11.

Tomo-E-Ame: Friends-Drawings-Candy: MangaBento's annual exhibit at the Honolulu Museum of Art School. June 16-July 14.

Taku Taku Matsuri: A summer festival with an anime/manga slant at Hawaii Kotohira Jinsha-Hawaii Dazaifu Tenmangu. Aug. 25.

Kawaii Kon 2014: Guests include voice actors Michael Sinterniklaas and Stephanie Sheh. Hawai'i Convention Center, April 4-6, 2014.

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