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
Butaitanbou-sha Ebisu media appearances
Adding to previous coverage by Yomiuri Shimbun and Kyoto Shimbun, butaitanbou-sha Ebisu (夷 @ye_bi_su) was interviewed for the print and online edition of Sankei Shimbun, and made an appearance on NHK Kyoto local news. Ebisu’s Hibike! Euphonium themed dōjinshi delve deeply into Uji culture through interviews with local artisans, and include discussion of Kyoto Animation location hunting and production process. He is planning a third and final volume in which he would like to focus on Uji local festivals.
— 田村興業 代表 田村勝弘 (@katuhiro_tamura) October 18, 2019
— 夷（ゑびす）@宇治ユーフォ本通販中 (@ye_bi_su) October 18, 2019
NHK Kyoani site
NHK created a special site called “Kyoani Connecting Thoughts” (京アニつなぐ思い), marking three months since the July 18 arson attack on Kyoto Animation, inviting fans to submit messages of support for the studio. The site includes five articles adapted from previous NHK TV coverage, including pieces on Hibike! Euphonium pilgrimage location Nakaji Bakery, and badges expressing support created and worn by vendors at Tamako Market location model Demachi Masugata Shōtengai.
@ryuseisupporter published a detailed photo essay of this year’s Ryūsei Matsuri (龍勢まつり), held October 13 in Chichibu, Saitama Prefecture. The festival is notable for its handmade fireworks, which were featured in Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai. The piece is an up close look at the lore, participants and preparations, and includes the best photography of the festival I’ve come across to date.
Anime Seichijunrei “Book” Spot Sale 3
Guest talk details have been released for the third Anime Seichijunrei “Hon” Sokubaikai (アニメ聖地巡礼“本”即売会), scheduled November 17 at Kanda Myōjin. Mangaka Morita Takashi (森田崇) will talk about creating the setting of the manga adaptation of Lupin and leading a pilgrimage tour to Paris and Étretat, France. Production I.G archivist Yamakawa Michiko (山川道子) will discuss the case study of entrusting preservation of production materials for Rinne no Lagrange to the city of Kamogawa, Chiba Prefecture, the series’ location model. Kinki University contents tourism researcher Okamoto Takeshi (岡本健) will serve as moderator for the event. Media coverage: Dream News 1, Dream News 2, Dream News 3
Tenki no Ko pilgrimage
Tokyo MX broadcast a news segment on the popularity of pilgrimage to Tokyo locations for Tenki no Ko, focusing on rooftop shrine Asahi Inari Jinja in Ginza, though it isn’t directly related to the setting of the film, as well as Kishō Jinja, a small shrine on the grounds of Kōenji Hikawa Jinja in Suginami Ward, which does appear in the background art.
Mimi o Sumaseba pilgrimage
Twenty-four years after the release of Studio Ghibli film Mimi o Sumaseba (Whisper of the Heart), fans continue to make pilgrimages to Seiseki-Sakuragaoka in Tama, Tokyo Metropolis. The pilgrimage exchange notebook at pastry shop Noa is now at 51 volumes. Fans who were still children at the time they left their first entries in the notebook returned years later to make an update that they had gotten married. Media coverage: Go Guy Net
Keihan Eupho collaboration
The latest iteration of the recurring marketing collaboration between Keihan Railway and Hibike! Euphonium, which had originally been scheduled to begin July 20 and was postponed in the wake of the July 18 arson attack on Kyoto Animation, will now commence November 1. The campaign will feature a digital stamp rally using smartphone app Butaimeguri, commemorative one-day train passes, character panels in stations on the Keihan Uji Line, and character headmarks on Keishin Line and Ishiyama-Sakamoto Line trains. Most parts of the collaboration will be active until 2020 March 31, though ticket sales are limited to November and December. The Eupho wrapping on the Ishiyama-Sakamoto Line that began during the previous collaboration in 2018 March will continue until 2019 December 3. Media coverage: Kyoto Shimbun, Sankei Shimbun
— 京阪電車おでかけ情報【公式】 (@okeihan_net) October 21, 2019
Zombie Land Saga music video
Saga Jihen, a new Franchouchou music video released October 19, features backgrounds from various locations around Saga Prefecture not previously used in Zombie Land Saga. Fans have already identified and made pilgrimages to the new places. Media coverage: Saga Keizai Shimbun
Irozuku Nagasaki map
Nagasaki Prefecture Film Commission released a Nagasaki City “butaitanbou map” for Irozuku Sekai no Ashita kara. Media coverage: Nagasaki Shimbun