NHK Professional Clips Got Pulled

A big thanks to NHK, whose employees apparantly have nothing better to do than scour YouTube for clips from its television shows. Thanks to their valiant efforts, those nasty, horrible clips of Miyazaki were pulled. Gee, good move there, jerks. Yeah, that'll show us. Now we'll have to actually turn in to your crappy network to watch this stuff.....

...Except for those of us who inhabit the rest of the world. Oops. Fuckin' jerks. Why don't you weasels go play in traffic or something?

The endless attempts by traditional media to control the public never ceases to amaze me. Wasn't this on free television? Ya think maybe I should show a picture of my VCR? How 'bout a TiVO? Does the phrase, "internet download" mean anything? Shutting down something on YT means nothing. Get bent, losers.


Today's Funny Thought

Funny that I got more referrals this week from a snarky letter I unloaded on Salon than anything else. I've really gotta get my blog selling skills up to speed. Or maybe I just need to protest the sorry state of "pop music" more loudly. I'll be outside with my guitar and a sandwich board.


Conversations on Ghibli Birthday Contest!

To commemorate the blog's first anniversary, I'm giving away a collection of, well, everything. Paintings. DVDs. Books. Fansubs. And this weird frog thing. I really don't know what it is.

Okay, here are the rules:

1) List your Miyazaki/Takahata Top 5. It can be anything and everything, from Toei Doga to Studio Ghibli. Horus, Lupin, Heidi, Conan, Gauche, Nausicaa, Totoro, Fireflies, Howl - anything goes.

2) Write a short note or essay about your favorite. Which is your number one, and why? You don't need to write a full-scale movie review (like reciting the plot), just share your love with us, speak from the heart and your own experiences.

When the contest is over, I'll compile all the votes and share some of your notes here on the blog. Send your Miyazaki/Takahata Top 5, and your favorite essay, to This contest runs through the month of April. The final day is May 1. Pass the word! Let's see who is the most popular!

Okay, here are the prizes:

First prize is a new car. Second prize is a set of steak knives. Third prize is you're fired.

1st Prize - An R3 DVD of Omohide Poro Poro. A Kiki tote bag, perfect for showing off your new DVD. And an actual Daniel Thomas painting from my vaults. Probably a watercanvas.

Next up is the Mystery Disc. What is the Mystery Disc? What kind of stupid question is that? It's a Mystery Disc. Could be anything. Even a boat. But it's on a DVD-R, taken from my movie collection. One of the imports, that's for sure.

Finally, the dvd-rom Fansub Collection. This package includes: Horus, Prince of the Sun; The Flying Ghost Ship; Lupin III (series 1); Future Boy Conan; Anne of Green Gables; the Nemo Pilot; Ghiblies 1; and a collection of Hayao Miyazaki comics. Oh, and I'll throw in the divx codecs and the VLC Media Player so you can actually watch this.

2nd Prize - The 4-book set of Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind. This is the older Viz release, which was replaced by the larger 7-book set. So, basically, you're getting my backup copy. Sorry, Kui. Kai is dead.

Just for kicks, I'm throwing in one of the toys YesAsia sends me with each order. I've got four, you'll get one of 'em. Also, you'll get a Mystery Disc, the dvd-rom Fansubs, and one of my paintings.

3rd Prize - An R3 DVD of Whisper of the Heart. Good for you. You also receive a Mystery Disc, the dvd-rom Fansubs, and one of my paintings. Oh, and you get the second of the four YesAsia toys. Might be the hot anime girl. Might be the cop car. You don't care.

4th Prize - An R3 DVD of My Neighbor Totoro. Happy, happy. Joy, joy. You also get a Mystery Disc, the dvd-rom Fansubs, and one of my paintings. You better not sell it to Sotheby's. Oh, and you get the third of the four toys. Maybe you'll get the frog.

5th Prize - The PC game Star Wars: Empire at War. This was a Christmas gift, so don't go bragging to your friends that I spent a lot of money on you. I only paid for postage. Oh, you get the last toy, the Mystery Disc, the dvd-rom fansubs, and one of my lousy paintings.

6th-10th Prize - A Mystery Disc, the dvd-rom Fansubs, and one of my lousy paintings. No, you can't have my Pink Floyd and Cream records.

11th Prize - You're fired.


Happy Birthday! Ghibli Blog Turns One!

Happy Birthday! Conversations on Ghibli turns one year old on March 30! Many thanks to everyone who has visitited, left comments, sent me emails, added me to your blogrolls, sent me presents in the mail, or just paid an occasional visit.

My purpose in this blog has always been to spread a greater understanding of the works of Studio Ghibli and all its creators. Hopefully, you've learned a few things. You won't go around thinking of Miyazaki as, "that guy who's kinda like Walt Disney" any more. "Oh, he's the one who did that cartoon with the big cat. My five-year-old likes that." And, likewise, wou won't think of Takahata as, "that other guy, you know, the one who made that really, really depressing war movie."

So, happy birthday to the Ghibli blog!

Also...stay tuned. I've got a contest coming out. I'll unveil everything later tonight. Prizes will include fansubs, tote bags, DVDs, and maybe that extra copy of the Nausicaa books. Watch this space, kids.


Today's Screenshots - Gedo Senki

Haven't done this in quite a while (it is pretty time-consuming, dontcha know), so I thought I'd spread the harvest around and show off a number of screenshots from Goro Miyazaki's Gedo Senki.

I've just finished watching it, and I'm going to need time to piece everything together and figure out a more diplomatic method of presenting my thoughts. There's a lot to jumble down, from the presentation of the movie itself, its relation to Ursula LeGuinn's Earthsea novels, and (obviously) Goro's relations with his old man. Whatever. I need sleep.

But just in case you're wondering, here's my "short, short version" (arcane Mel Brooks riff, dontcha know) of Goro's first movie:

It's shit. Absolute fucking shit. And you can quote me on that.

More to come later.

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