Asteroid in Love 恋する小惑星

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 Archive relocation
Since 2005, Ōishi Gen (おおいしげん @genoishi)—Butaitanbou Community member and contents tourism researcher at Toyama University—has cataloged scene hunting blog posts for anime, manga and games in the Butaitanbou Archive, previously at http://legwork.g.hatena.ne.jp/, now at https://wikiwiki.jp/legwork/. This is the only public database of fan generated reference material of this breadth and scope, and the importance of this resource can’t be overstated. The platform that hosted the site, part of Hatena Group, was discontinued 2020 January 31. Because it did not facilitate usable export formats for migration to contemporary content management systems, Gen painstakingly copied the data manually to a new Wiki site over the course of a month. If you ever have the chance to meet Gen, please give him a big thanks!

Uji pilgrimage exchange notebook
Sankei Shimbun published an article about the content and tone of messages left in the Hibike! Euphonium pilgrimage exchange notebook at the Uji Tourism Center over the six months following the 2019 July arson attack at Kyoto Animation Studio 1. Messages of mourning, prayers and support in the immediate aftermath have gradually returned to typical notes about enjoyment of seichijunrei to Uji, with some expressing the intention of going on anime pilgrimage as a tribute to the studio.

Yurucamp collaborations
Yurucamp Fujikko Machimeguri (ゆるキャン△ 梨っ子町めぐり) is underway. Fans traveled to Ichikawamisato, Fujikawa, Hayakawa, Minobu, Nanbu—the Kyōnan area 5 towns—for the February 1-2 opening weekend which, in addition to ongoing promotions that will span the two month duration of the collaboration, featured unveiling of Yurucamp wrappings on municipal buses and an overnight camping meetup at former Shimobe Elementary School. Media coverage: Yomiuri Shimbun, Shizuoka Shimbun

Current Season Pilgrimage

@sky_dj_ made a pilgrimage to Shimoda and Higashiizu, Shizuoka Prefecture for Koisuru Asteroid Episode 5.

@flyingbird1124 made a pilgrimage to Ikebukuro, Toshima Ward, Tokyo Metropolis; Shimoda, Shizuoka Prefecture; and aboard the Izu Kyūkō Line for Koisuru Asteroid Episode 5.

@626shin made a pilgrimage to Tsukuba and Shimotsuma, Ibaraki Prefecture for Koisuru Asteroid Episode 3 (updated post) and Episode 4 (post).

@Surwill published a Street View tour of locations in Kawagoe, Saitama Prefecture for Koisuru Asteroid Episode 1 through Episode 3.

@nadukari_h (updated post) and @sky_dj_ (post) made a pilgrimages to Minobu, Yamanashi Prefecture for Heyacamp Episode 4. Sky’s post also includes a report from the opening of Yurucamp Fujikko Machimeguri.

@lidges made a pilgrimage (updated post) to Okayama City, Okayama Prefecture for Oshi ga Budōkan Ittekuretara Shinu through Episode 4.

@miyaken46 made a pilgrimage to Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture for Gekijōban High School Fleet.

Past Season Pilgrimage

@flyingbird1124 made a pilgrimage to Kyoto for Hōkago Saikoro Club.

@kimamanidance made a pilgrimage to Yanagihara and Senjuakebonochō, Adachi Ward, Tokyo Metropolis for SSSS.Gridman.

@aga3104_keyaki made a pilgrimage to Osaka for Ramen Daisuki Koizumi-san.

@mikehattsu made a pilgrimage to Nishiki-yu in Kyoto for Tamako Market and Tamako Love Story.

@mikehattsu made a pilgrimage (post 1, post 2, post 3) to Kyoto for K-On!

@Oveldas made a pilgrimage to Hamura, Mizuho and Setagaya Ward (all Tokyo Metropolis) for Clannad.