Thursday, September 30, 2010

Anime Word of the Week - Chibi (ちび) / Super Deformed

Chibi (ちび) or (禿び) / Super Deformed

... is a Japanese word meaning "short person" or "small child". It's meaning is of someone that is small. It can be translated as "little", but is not used the same way as chiisana [小さな] (tiny, small, little in Japanese).

A prototypical example of the former usage in the original Japanese which brought the term to the attention of Western fans is Chibiusa, a pet name for the diminutive daughter of Sailor Moon formed from Chibi Usagi (or "Little Usagi").

In English-speaking anime and manga fandom, the term chibi has mostly been conflated with the term super deformed or it can be used to describe child versions of characters. Super deformed (or 'SD') is a specific style of Japanese caricature where characters are drawn in an exaggerated way, typically small and chubby, with stubby limbs and over sized heads, to make them resemble small children.

Artists often Super Deform characters in order to show an extreme change in the characters' mood. While the characters' mood may change to anything, seriousness, anger, embarrassment, feigned cuteness, the goal of the animators is always comedic cuteness. Often done at the punchline of a joke for an extra comedic oomph.

The chibi / super deformed style is part of Japanese culture and is seen everywhere from advertising and subway signs to anime and manga. It is often also used on anime and manga in brief interjections to show an extreme or exaggerated emotion, such as anger or surprise, that would be difficult to portray or would seem out of character if expressed on a more realistic face. They are meant to be cute and are often used in humorous diversions from the storyline, such as in Omake scenes between episodes (like the Chibi Tachikoma scenes in the GiTS SAC TV series).

Proportions are often measured using head length as a guide. The average adult is considered to stand seven (1:7) to seven and a half heads tall. Idealized figures are often drawn eight heads (1:8) in length. See this tutorial for more info.

In addition to their modified proportions, super deformed characters typically lack the detail of their normal counterparts. As a result, when a character of average proportions is depicted as a super deformed character, certain aspects of his or her design will be simplified and others will be exaggerated. Details such as folds on a jacket are ignored, and general shapes are favored. If a character has a signature characteristic (odd hair, a particular accessory, etc.) this will typically be prominent on the super deformed version of the character.

In most Anime the SD-Mode only lasts a few seconds, however there are some Anime series where the character designs are completely SD, very often in parodies such as Superior Defender ('SD') Gundam or Scramble Wars. Scramble Wars (1988) was part of AnimEigo's US released Super-Deformed Double Feature (VHS only) which also included Ten Little Gall Force, a mockumentary detailing a behind-the-scenes look at the production of Gall Force: Eternal Story. Characters were drawn as super deformed versions of their Eternal Story counterparts.

Aw man, if that doesn't bring a tear to your eye...!

Hey folks, tell you how long I've been around the Anime scene - I have the Super-Deformed Double Feature VHS in my collection. And no, I won't sell it, so don't ask... -_^ If you have a care, and like me, have very fond memories of Gall Force, BGC, Riding Bean, and Earth Surviver Gaiarth you can watch Scramble Wars on YouTube here.

Media Blasters December Schedule / Date Updates

A lot of people have been e-mailing in asking about updates for Media Blasters titles, and as many of you know I don't like to pass on rumors. I've heard back from the folks in NY today and they have updated their December schedule:

Queen's Blade: The Exiled Virgin, Vol #3, Journey's End DVD (Eps #9-12)
Queen's Blade Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-12)
Queen's Blade Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-12) (BLURAY)

They have also resheduled the Voltron: Fleet of Doom Movie (BLURAY) for Nov 14th, and re-affirmed the dates for the titles that were recently moved into October. The only thing still up in the air is the ship date for the Ah My Buddha (Amaenaideyo!!) Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-26) which has been on backorder since July. I'm being told we are just waiting for copies to arrive from the replicator and then we can start shipping those backorders to you.

The Bleach #6 Boxed Set has Not Been Delayed

Just an FYI to everyone asking about the rumors that the Bleach Uncut Boxed Set #6 (Eps #110-121) has been delayed. This is not true, the street date was this week and has not been changed, though Warner did ship them to retailers at the last minute.

We have the set IN STOCK and they are shipping now.

I think one of the smaller stores posted something about the street date being pushed back, but that is not the case and all retailers should have the sets in stock by now. Oh, also, in comparison to the previous 5 boxes, #6 is just a 3 tray standard size DVD case with a paper slip sleeve. Viz could not have chosen cheaper packaging, which didn't make us very happy.

Anyway, we have it, so order away! :-)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Anime Word of the Week - Ahoge (アホ毛, アホげ)

Ahoge (アホ毛, アホげ) a single strand of hair that sticks out of a character's head. It literally means "foolish hair" or "stupid hair" or "idiot hair" and is a visual cue common to anime and manga. It is most often used to identify foolish, bumbling or carefree characters. In the west, Alfalfa from The Little Rascals would be the most identifiable character with what could be considered an ahoge.

Ahoge are a naturally occurring trait of the hair and are not created with the aid of styling tools. They also appear only near the top of the head, but can be anywhere on top, front or back. The look of ahoge can also vary widely, from long and thin to short and thick. While ahoge have been seen on characters for decades - Osamu Tezuka created characters with ahoge as far back as 1953 - the first series to popularize the specific use of the term is Pani Poni Dash!. In Pani Poni Dash the character Himeko Katagiri sported one and had a major story line in one episode dedicated to it; Himeko's also appears to be living as it moves on its own and mirrors her current mood.

Even if a character is not specifically stupid or naive, an Ahoge also usually represents some sort of mischievous quality about them.

Ahoge have appeared on numerous other characters but are usually limited to those appearing in works with comedic content and then mostly on females. Examples of characters that have an ahoge are Konata Izumi from Lucky Star, Megumi Momono from Mahoraba, Naru Narusegawa from Love Hina, Kenji Harima from School Rumble, Nori from Rozen Maiden, Meg from Burst Angel, and Italy, Romano, and a few other characters from Hetalia: Axis Powers. Male characters with ahoge are more rare but are not unknown, such as Edward Elric from the series Fullmetal Alchemist.

Toradora Premium Collection #2 - Now In Stock!

I'm very happy to report that our inventory of the 2nd Toradora Premium Collection has arrived and is now in stock and shipping!

We will begin filling pre-orders today, but we have accumulated A LOT so I'm guessing it will take until close of business tomorrow for us to get them all out. I've tasked about half to folks here to work on nothing except those until they are completed shipping.

The part #2 set contains episodes 14-25 on 2-discs and includes a full-color artbook (hardcover) and a premium collectors box.DVD extra's include Toradora! SOS! Hurray for Gourmands 3-4, plus Clean Opening & Clean Ending.

Part #2 Synopsis: Ryuji and Taiga slowly begin to understand their feelings not just towards their crushes, but what they mean to one another. After the Culture Festival comes to a close, Kitamura begins to display a rebellious attitude. To bring him around, Ryuji tells Taiga to run for Student Council President. Christmas pageants, complete with a beautiful song, come and go. During a school trip to a ski resort, Ryuji will learn the truth about Taiga's heart. What will he do with this knowledge? The tiger and dragon stand together, but are they strong enough to face the obstacles life will throw at them?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Great Recession is Dead... Long Live the Great Recession!


Bandai Nov / Section 23 Dec Releases - Now Available for Pre-Order!

We have just gotten in both Bandai's November and Section 23's December 2010 release schedules and we've now got them posted to the store site.

Here's what's coming:

Bandai November 2010:

Kurokami The Animation Part #4 DVD (Eps #19-24) (Bilingual)
Kurokami The Animation Part #4 DVD (BLURAY) (Eps #12.5-16) (English Dubbed)

Section 23 December 2010:

Kimikiss Pure Rouge DVD Collection #2 (Eps #14-26)
Nyan Koi Complete Collection DVD Set (Eps #1-12)
Eyeshield 21 Collection #3 DVD Boxed Set (Eps #27-39)
Gintama DVD Collection #3 (Eps #27-39)

In addition to the new releases, Bandai also bumped back Hayate the Combat Butler DVD #7 (Eps #39-44) a couple of weeks to November 2nd.

Nyan Koi!
Junpei Kōsaka is a second-year high school student who despises cats and has an allergy to them. It just so happens that his high school crush is Kaede Mizuno, a girl who adores cats. One day, while walking home from school, Junpei kicks an empty can and unfortunately beans the local neko-jizō-sama (guardian deity of cats). He finds he can now understand what cats are saying, including his family's own ill-tempered cat, Nyamusasu. However, if he does not grant 100 wishes from cats, he will turn into cat himself.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Media Blasters - New Dates

Considering that EVERYONE is asking (or seems to be), we've finally got some new dates for those recent AWOL Media Blasters releases like Dragon Destiny 3 and Genshiken DX.

They are not as favorable as we were lead to believe a couple weeks ago when we talked to them, but at least we now have street date commitments other than 'soon'.

Here's the changes:

Bumped to October 19th:

Blade of the Immortal Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-13) (Litebox)

Bumped to October 26th:

Ikki Tousen Dragon Destiny, Vol #3, Sousou's Ambition (Eps #9-12)
Ikki Tousen Dragon Destiny Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-12)
Genshiken DX Collection DVD Boxed Set (TV Season 1 + OVA)
Dairugger DVD Collection 3 (Eps #37-52)

Bumped to November 2nd:

Genshiken 2 - The Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture Complete Collection DVD Box (Eps #1-12) (Lite Box)
World of Magic Knight Rayearth Complete Collection Season 2 DVD Boxed Set (Eps #21-49) (Remastered)

I know there are some folks that have us holding orders for Dragon Destiny 3. As always, if you want to make a change, just drop us an e-mail. :-)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Have an Nice Weekend Everyone!

Here's a little something someone dug up on the intertubes for me today:

This song is awesome. And they really like Vodka in Finland. Here too. ;-)

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Funimation December 2010 Releases - Now Available for Pre-Order!

Funimation has sent out their December 2010 release schedule and we've got it posted to the store site. Here's what's coming:

Baccano! Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Viridian Collection)
Dragonball Z Kai Season 1 Part 3 DVD Boxed Set (Eps #27-39)
Dragonball Z Kai Season 1 Part 3 DVD Boxed Set (Eps #27-39) (BLURAY)
Dragonaut: The Resonance TV Series Complete DVD Boxed (Eps #1-26)
Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood Part 3 DVD Boxed Set
Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood Part 3 DVD Boxed Set (BLURAY)
Gad Guard Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (S.A.V.E. Edition)
Gun X Sword Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-26)
Guyver Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Viridian Collection) (Re-Price)
Ikki Tousen (Battle Vixens) Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Viridian Collection)
Kaleido Star Season 2 Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #27-52 + OVA)
Le Chevalier D'Eon Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-24) (S.A.V.E. Edition)
One Piece Season 3 Part 4 DVD Boxed Set (Eps #179-191)
Ragnarok Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-26) (S.A.V.E. Edition)
Sands of Destruction DVD Complete Series DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-13) (Viridian Collection)
Spice and Wolf Season 1 Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-13) (Viridian Collection)
Tenchi Muyo GXP Complete DVD Boxed Set (Re-Release) (Viridian Collection)
The Tower of Druaga Complete Collection DVD Boxed Set (Eps #1-24)

No new licenses in there, just continuations and (mostly) re-releases. And I thought they were saving their best stuff until December. -_^

Real Driving

I know that some of you out there greatly admire the skills it takes to drive a car at 200mph in a circle...

... but for me, THIS IS REAL DRIVING:

It's Initial D for real.

I'm dreaming of that being me driving all over some Anime studios good intentions to help their retail partners in the living room with kitchy little incentive ideas while screwing us over royally just outside the front door by favoring some companies with better pricing, and giving competitors control over our inventory. It's easy to run great sales on products sitting in your warehouse you didn't ever have to pay for. The rest of us have to work for a living.


Anime Word of the Week - Ecchi (エッチ)

Ecchi (エッチ) derived from a Japanese word meaning "erotic", "lewd", "sexy", or "lascivious" when used as an adjective, or sexual intercourse when used as a noun. The nuance of ecchi varies with context, but in general the word itself is comparable to "naughty" or "dirty".

The origin of the term ecchi is uncertain. Ecchi in Japanese is attached to the Japanese pronunciation of the Roman letter "H" which is the first letter in the Japanese word "Hentai", which may be a backronym. The prefix "H-" is sometimes used to refer to pornographic genres: H-anime, H-manga, etc. (that's how we refer to adult only stuff here at the store - 'H'). Ecchi is another way to say "perverted" in Japanese, but its connotation is not as strong as Hentai. Chotto Ecchi (chotto meaning "slightly") refers to anime that has some light sexual themes.

The word sekkusu is also used in Japan for sex, and Japanese native words for sex (such as 性交 seikō) are often replaced by words of foreign origin such as sekkusu or neologisms such as ecchi.

Anime that contain a lot of sexual humor but no outright pornography are most often correctly referred to as 'ecchi'. Examples vary widely, but include series like Love Hina, Amazing Nurse Nanako, Harenchi Gakuen, Ninja Girls, Yumeria, Kanokon, Kiss×Sis, Please Teacher, Girls Bravo, Dears, Maburaho, Tenjho Tenge, Chobits, Hanaukyo Maid Team, Kemeko DX, Sora no Otoshimono, Sakura Diaries, Shuffle, Golden Boy, Sumomomo Momomo, Green Green, Rosario + Vampire, Asu no Yoichi (good grief, the list goes on and on!) and of course, my favorite - Mahoromatic!

Remember everyone, dirty thoughts are bad...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Rin-Ne Vol #4 Cover

Since no store anywhere seems to have an image of the cover of Rumiko Takahashi's Rin-Ne #4 posted, here it is:

Synopsis: While suffering from a cold, Rinne gets a visit from a very strange doctor. The surprise house call leads Rinne, Sakura and Tsubasa to a confrontation with Sabato, Rinne's deadbeat father and president of the evil Damashigami Company! The stage is set for an all-out father-son battle in the afterlife.

And since so many people are asking, yes, we have it in stock and have been shipping it for about a week.

Taki Corp Goes Bankrupt

Just an FYI, many of you have probably already heard about this, but I didn't want to post anything until we got some word on what was going to happen to their assets.

On August 25th it was reported in Japan that Anime figure maker Taki had gone bankrupt. That is correct. Here in the states YamatoUSA was their import partner and master dealer, and we got the word from them today that they are liquidating their remaining small inventory of Taki products and canceling all pending retailer pre-orders.

Taki had gotten a bit of a reputation in the industry for making some of the ugliest Anime figures ever produced. Some of that reputation was deserved.

There is a rumor in Japan that Taki's figure business may be picked up by another company, but I have not been able to confirm that. Frankly, we really don't need anymore Ikki Tousen figures on the market anyway.

What I do know for sure is that all previously solicited Taki figure pre-orders have been canceled. We're going through the list today but I don't think we had anything of theirs up for pre-order anyway. I'll update this post later today if we do end up having to cancel any pre-orders.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Studio Gainax - What Won't they Do...

Gainax recently made public a preview of their upcoming 'Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt' Anime:

An ecchi version of 'Power Puff Girls' is coming to mind (just what we needed) , and I hope this is not a preview of things to come as the industry tries to go in 'new directions'.

It will begin airing in Japan on October 1st. Don't know about you, but I think I'll probably skip this one...

...well, maybe I'll watch an ep or two anyway, you know, just to see.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Toradora Opening in HD

With the 2nd half of Toradora shipping soon, here's a little HD eye candy to make your Monday morning a little happier:

Hat tip to Sean for sending!

Friday, September 10, 2010

RACS 'Sustain the Industry' Video Challenge

In last weeks newsletter I highlighted how a small movement has appeared via YouTube titled "Sustain the Industry," in which fans detail their monthly anime-related purchases in an attempt to encourage fans to purchase anime DVDs, manga volumes, and/or merchandise.

We've decided to take the original concept to the next level, and offer a $25 merchandise coupon to any RACS fans who posts a YouTube video in that thread highlighting what they purchased from the Anime Corner Store. We're calling this our RACS 'Sustain the Industry' Video Challenge.

The rules are very simple. All you have to do is place an order on the Corner Store, create and post your video (remember, you have the show the receipt in the video - and make sure to show your stuff too!), and then e-mail me with your NAME, the video's LINK (the URL) AND your RACS ORDER NUMBER and I'll e-mail you back with a $25 Anime Corner coupon code that can be used on your next order.

One code per customer please. Order highlighted in your video must have been placed on or after Sept 1st, 2010. Offer is good for video's posted through the end of October, so crank up those video cameras and get some free Anime from RACS!

UPDATE: Obviously, in exchange for the coupon credit we want you to plug what you purchased at our store - AND ONLY OUR STORE - in your video. Please do a separate video for stuff you might have purchased somewhere else - you know - at one of those lesser establishments. Thanks! :-)

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Anime Word of the Week - Dōjinshi (同人誌)

Dōjinshi (Doujinshi) (同人誌)

...are self-published Japanese works, usually magazines, manga or novels. They are often the work of amateurs, though some professional artists participate as a way to publish material outside the regular industry. The term dōjinshi is derived from dōjin (同人?, literally "same person", used to refer to a person or persons with whom one shares a common goal or interest) and shi (誌?, a suffix generally meaning "periodical publication"). Dōjinshi are part of a wider category of dōjin including, but not limited to, art collections, anime, hentai and games.

Dōjinshi are made by artists or writers who prefer to (or have no other choice but to) publish their own materials. Avid fans of dōjinshi attend regular dōjinshi conventions, the largest of which is called Comiket ( the "Comic Market") held twice a year at the Tokyo Big Site. At the convention, over 20 acres of dōjinshi are bought, sold, and traded by attendees. Dōjinshi creators who based their materials on other creators' works normally publish in small numbers to maintain a low profile from litigation.

While dōjinshi is essentially amateur comic publishing, many professional, published artists continue to self-publish dōjinshi in addition to their mainstream manga. These dōjinshi may be new original works that they chose not to (or are unable to) have published by a larger company. They can also be side-stories that the artists create for fans of their published works. Many established artists started their careers as dōjinshi-ka. Yoshitoshi ABe's Haibane Renmei was based on one of his dōjinshi works.

To many western Anime and Manga fans, dōjinshi is usually perceived to be derivative of existing work, analogous to fan fiction and almost exclusively pornographic. This is partly (mostly) true: dōjinshi are often, though not always, parodies or alternative storylines involving the worlds of popular manga, game or anime series, and will often feature overtly sexual material. It is very common for dōjinshi-ka to create sexually explicit stories using characters from established manga such as Sailor Moon, Gravitation, Read or Die, Please Teacher and so-on. Sometimes even the original creators produce pornographic dōjin side-stories to their published work.

In the Dojin community, 2D wins the day.

Examples of Dojin culture in Anime can be found in series like Comic Party in which Kazuki Sendō tries to become a Doujinshi artisis but his childhood friend Mizuki tries to talk him out of it (because she believes otakus are smelly and dirty). The Anime Dojin Work follows the life of a young girl named Najimi Osana and her exposure into the dōjin world, making a group of very (and I mean VERY) interesting friends along the way. In the manga and anime Genshiken the second season's storyline focuses on the The Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture's production of a dōjinshi.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

NIS Schedules Pandora Hearts / Wagaya no Oinarisama

NIS has been busy over the past few days giving us information about their 4th quarter Anime releases. They have just scheduled two new Premium Edition collections complete with extra's:

Pandora Hearts Premium Collection DVD Boxed Set #1 - Oct 26
Our Home's Fox Deity (Wagaya no Oinarisama) Premium DVD Boxed Set #1
- Nov 16

Plus, they have also taken the recently delayed 2nd half boxes of Toradora and Persona off TBA status and rescheduled them both for Sept 28th so they will be coming in soon. Yeah! AND, they also told us that if you had contacted them needing a replacement disk for one of the 1st half sets, they will be shipping those directly to you around the end of September as well.

The Pandora Hearts premium box will include 2 DVD's containing Eps #1-12, a 32-page full-color, hardcover artbook featuring detailed character and background introductions, comments from staff members, illustrations, and the exclusive comic "Gilbert in Wonderland" by original author Jun Mochizuki packaged in a premium box.

Synopsis: Oz Vessalius, who just turned fifteen, leads a rich and privileged life as the heir to the Vessalius name and estate. But everything changes when, during his Coming of Age Ceremony, he is drawn into an eternal prison known as "Abyss." There he meets and is saved by Alice, the Bloody Black Rabbit (B-Rabbit for short). Join Oz on this fantasy adventure as he unravels the mysteries behind Alice, Abyss, and the "Pandora" organization!

The Wagaya no Oinarisama (Our Home's Fox Deity) premium box will also include 2 DVD's containing eps #1-12, a 32-page full-color, hardcover artbook packed with character introductions, illustration galleries, and terminology all packaged in a premium box.

Synopsis: The Takagami brothers are protected by a mischievous, supernatural fox named Kugen. Together with absent-minded shrine maiden Ko, their adventures are full of action and comedy in this mysterious story. Extraordinary things happen in their ordinary lives.

Both sets are available for pre-order at the store site now.

Friday, September 03, 2010


We're celebrating the Labor Day holiday with great savings across the entire store! From now through Tuesday, Sept 8th you can save up to an additional 10% off any combination of IN STOCK items listed on the store!

To save 5% off any IN STOCK order (no minimum) just use the following coupon during checkout:


To save 10% off any IN STOCK order over $250 just use the following coupon during checkout:


The more you purchase the more you save, so be sure to take advantage of this great opportunity to load up on some of the Anime stuff you've been wanting! US customers can combine this offer with our super saver shipping option to save even more scratch on your favorite in stock Anime series, Manga, Figure, or Character Items!

Note: Valid for new orders of IN STOCK items only. Coupon codes expire at midnight EST on September 8th so get your orders in ASAP!

RACS - Labor Day Holiday Hours

We will be closed on Monday, Sept 6th for the Labor Day Holiday. All orders and inquiries received after 3pm today (Sept 3rd) will be processed when we return on Sept 7th.

Have a great holiday weekend everyone, and enjoy your Anime! :-)

Media Blasters Update

With all the date pushes and missed street dates recently,a lot of you have been writing in asking me about what's going on at Media Blasters. Well, the rumors floating around of their demise (like those of mine) are grossly exaggerated.

What is actually going on is that they have outsourced their warehouse operations, and moving their huge inventory plus ramping operations at the new facility is taking longer than they expected. Not only is this the reason for the recent date pushes, it's the reason for the late arrivals of several titles. Moves like this are supposed to be transparent to the customer base, but I can tell you (having done them) they NEVER work out that way.

I know this has been very frustrating for some of you, but I talked to the folks at MB in length yesterday and got a pretty good idea of where they are at with the move and what's going on with some of the titles you have been asking about. The two current late titles Genshiken DX and Ikki Tousen Dragon Destiny, Vol #3 are both scheduled to start shipping late next week. Also, titles that haven't been available for awhile like the Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro-Chan Special Edition and the Ah My Buddha Complete Boxed Set are finally back in replication and should all be back in stock by the end of the month. Considering the difficulties they have experienced changing over their warehouse operations it's probably a good thing they did it mid-year so that everything will be back up and running before the holiday season kicks off next month (that's around mid-October for us).

So please continue to be patient a little longer while they get their schedule back on track.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Anime Word of the Week - Yamato Nadeshiko (大和撫子)

Yamato Nadeshiko (大和撫子)

...the Japanese ideal for a woman, being humble and skilled in domestic matters.

Yamato Nadeshiko is a complex Japanese concept meaning "personification of an idealized Japanese woman" - "ideal" in the historical context of the patriarchal, traditional culture of Japan. This floral metaphor combines Yamato (an ancient name for Japan) and nadeshiko (Dianthus superbus: large pink or frilled pink carnation) literally translated as "Japanese Dianthus".

The term is often defined as figure of speech for the beauty of Japanese women who are neat and tidy. Per Confucianism, it revolves around acting for the benefit of the family and following instructions or acting in the best interest of patriarchal authority figures. Virtues include: loyalty, domestic ability, wisdom, and humility.

Today, in most cases, the term "Yamato nadeshiko" is used in the context of nostalgia, referring to Japanese women with "good old" traits, as they are critically endangered.

Western Anime fans often mistake this type of characterization as a sort of 'doormat' type, but this is a very ignorant assumption. The nadeshiko is a 'wildflower'. A properly crafted Yamato Nadeshiko will show a subtle, but present 'touch of iron' in that she is unwilling to let circumstances hurt the ones she cares about or distract her from her goals. This is often accomplished very subtly. Older Yamato Nadeshiko are better at this, while a younger one will make up for it in determination - especially when it comes to the man she loves, because that trumps every other consideration.

Some Anime characters that are said to personify examples of Yamato Nadeshiko include Tsubaki from Soul Eater, Yakumo Tsukamoto from School Rumble (who exists as a sort of deconstruction of the concept), Sawako Kuronuma from Kimi ni Todoke, Ruka Souen from Vampire Knight, Belldandy from Ah My Goddess (after all, if she wasn't the universe would cease to exist), Cherry from Saber Marionette J (who is also a Tsundere), Juli Mizrahi from Xenosaga, and of course - my personal all time favorite and the best example of them all - the beautiful Aoi Sakuraba from Ai Yori Aoshi. Kaoru Hanabishi is one of the luckiest men alive - even if he is an idiot sometimes.

More information on this complex concept can be found in the sci.lang.japan FAQ.