Tuesday, April 24, 2007

BOOK - Dragon Ball Daizenshuu #4

I still remember the first time I heard about the Dragon Ball  Daizenshuu that was released in Japan when the manga of Dragon Ball came to it's end. It was in the Dragon Ball ¡Dossier Definitivo!, a  book I purchased in Christmastime days back in 1995. I was eleven years old and the lack of information related to anything was huge specially for someone living in a small town. So I got amazed when I saw this hard cover Dragon Ball book, with a fancy Goku featured in its cover and so much information inside. 
The book was and maybe it's still today one of the best recompilations of Dragon Ball related information in Spanish. I started to make a vague idea in my head about how things related to manga industry in general and DB in particular worked in Japan. I knew nothing about Shueisha (the Japanese publisher of DB) Weekly Shonen Jump (The weekly magazine in wich DB was published) not even the Dragon Ball Tankōbon (the small books where DB was compiled). I was specially amazed with the chapter related to the DB books in Japan, for some reason, I have always been more interested  in printed material than anything else. I have never felt I wanted to have the figures or other kind of merchandise. But books I wanted them all. I was so fascinated by the fact that there was so much printed material of Dragon Ball in japan, and sad for the lack of it in Spain. Here the two pages of the "books" related section of Dragon Ball ¡Dossier Definitivo!


It was also around the year 95 when a friend of mine purchased a Japanese Tankōbon  of DB, the number 40, featuring an awesome cover, but nothing compared with what was inside. A never before seen transformation of Goku in super sayajin with long hair. None of us knew to read japanese so we just though Goku turned to evil or something. The little pocket size book was awesome, with a beautiful cover art and nice reproduction of the B&W drawings in a lightly brown paper. I really wanted to have one of them, I was so fascinated those days with all this Akira Toriyama related world I even chose it as a subject to make a apresentation work. So I digest all the information I had and vomited in front of the class. I guess it was a chaos and no one understood anything. Anyway, I was wishing to have an original japanese Dragon Ball book but that didn't happen until some years later, when I discovered a shop in Catalonia called Tot de Jocs, that had some japanese DB volumes at nice prices. It was year 98. No internet yet. Phone was the only way. Witch numbers do you have? Ok, send me the number 38 please.Thank you.

Some years later, in 2004 I discovered Amazon Japan, and after some minutes figuring out how to navigate through the site, that by the time wasn't translated to English at all, I found out that  the books Akira Toriyama The World and The World Special (as seen on the   image above) where still on circulation so I didn't thought twice and bought both of them. That was my first ever order to Amazon Japan

And today, april 24, 2007. After realising that the used stuff marketplace on Amazon works nicely and finding someone that ships overseas the fourth volume of Dragon Ball Daizenshuu, the seven book encyclopedia   released more that ten years ago to mark the end of the series back in 1995, I order it immediately. 

So after twelve years, and thanks to the more than ever connected world, what I believe it was something almost imposible to have when I was eleven, it suddenly has become an easy task of sitting in front of a computer, copy pasting some japanese words and shaking the credit card. Then, someone in japan that is trying to get rid of it's book, would pack it and send it to you. All for less that 30 bucks. I always get motivated by this kind of things, that's why I like companies like Amazon so much, companies that make everything more easy for everyone.

After this long introduction, here the book I purchased:

DRAGON BALL大全集 (4) WORLD GUIDE
by Akira Toriyama
167 pages / Shueisha / Japanese
ISBN: 978-4087827545
Release Date: 1995/10




Tuesday, April 03, 2007

DVD - AKIRA DTS sound edition



When Pioneer released the DTS sound edition Japanese DVD of AKIRA back in December 2002, it also released a limited edition that was bundled with a slipcase and a bonus disc containing the complete storyboard and hundreds of production stills like backgrounds and layouts. It soon sold out, but thanks to Amazon japan marketplace I found that someone was selling it's copy at a bargain price. Even I already owned the Special Edition DVD by Bandai and the crappy Spanish one. The bonus material included on this one make it a must have for anyone that likes this masterpiece by Katsuhiro Otomo.