Welcome to this week’s review of notable instances of public transit use and urban design, as well as discussion of place identity and culture, through anime currently broadcast or screening in Japan and simulcast internationally via the web. This review also documents seichijunrei (聖地巡礼 holy land pilgrimage) and butaitanbou (舞台探訪 scene hunting), which are pop culture tourism and place-based engagement induced by the use of real locations in show settings.
Media and General Interest
Shinano Mainichi Shimbun published an article about the unveiling of a monument claiming Tagiri Station in Iijima, Nagano Prefecture as the birthplace of anime seichijunrei, where visitors first began making pilgrimages following an OVA release of Kyūkyoku Chōjin R in 1991. This is contentious, as evidence suggests Megazone 23 (1985 OVA, Shinjuku, Shibuya and Harajuku, Tokyo Metropolis); Karuizawa Syndrome (1985 OVA, Karuizawa, Nagano Prefecture); and Maison Ikkoku (1986, Higashikurume, Tokyo Metropolis) all have stronger claims to this distinction. The true origin of anime tourism may not even be in Japan. Heidi, Girl of the Alps (1974, Maienfeld, Switzerland) is often cited as the first known example of anime pilgrimage.
Prominent contents tourism researcher Okamoto Takeshi will publish a new book based on his doctoral thesis titled Tourism Sociology of Anime Pilgrimage: Media and Communication Analysis of Contents Tourism (アニメ聖地巡礼の観光社会学 ―コンテンツツーリズムのメディア・コミュニケーション分析) in 2018 September.
Okamoto Takeshi and “contents tourism producer” (consultant, generally) Kakizaki Shundō will present a seminar on problems that arise from anime pilgrimage, compared and contrasted with issues of general tourism.
@626shin published a report from the July 22 lantern lighting ceremony for the Eighth Yuwaku Bonbori Matsuri, the fictional festival from Hanasaku Iroha that is now celebrated annually in Yuwaka Onsen, Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture.
JR Tōkai Tours is collaborating with Kyōto Teramachi Sanjō no Holmes to offer a Kyoto tour package based on the series from July 21 to September 30.
A third arrest has been made in the case of vandalism of Love Live! Sunshine!! manhole covers in Numazu, Shizuoka Prefecture. College student Yamaguchi Takahito is suspected to be involved with the spray painting incident that followed scratching of other manholes. Numazu City official statement. Media coverage: Jiji, Yahoo News Japan, Sankei Shimbun, Anime News Network
Fan Pilgrimage Update
Hōsei University Tama Campus (法政大学多摩キャンパス) swimming pool
Though called Tama, this Hōsei campus, one of three, is actually in Machida, Tokyo Metropolis.
Ōtani Beach (大谷ビーチ) in Ōtani, Iwami, Tottori Prefecture also appeared in Tokubetsuban Free! Take Your Marks.
Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre
Chinatown in Haymarket, Sydney
Russel Hotel in The Rocks, Sydney
Hōsei University Tama Campus
(ヤマノススメ サードシーズン Yama no Susume Sādo Shīzun)
Fan Pilgrimage Update
Lockheart Castle (ロックハート城) in Takayama, Gunma Prefecture