Fullmetal Alchemist, One Piece Voice Actor Ed Blaylock Passes Away

Voice actor for King Bradley, Sengoku was 64.

Dallas, Texas-based radio station WRR 101 revealed on Thursday that voice actor and radio host Ed Blaylock (Thomas Edwin Blaylock, Jr.) passed away on Wednesday after a battle with cancer. He was 64.

As a voice actor, Blaylock played the role of Fuhrer King Bradley in both the Fullmetal Alchemist and Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood television anime series. He also reprised the role in the Fullmetal Alchemist: Premium Collection and Fullmetal Alchemist: Seven Homunculi VS State Alchemists video anime series. He additionally played Fritz Lang in the Fullmetal Alchemist: The Movie – Conqueror of Shamballa film.

Other notable roles include Sengoku in One Piece, Director in Barakamon, and Sebas Tian in Overlord. He also played minor roles in more than 40 anime, including Attack on Titan, Tokyo Ghoul, Blood Blockade Battlefront, Dragon Ball, Toriko, Fairy Tail, Gunslinger Girl, Case Closed, Baccano!, A Certain Magical Index II, and more.

Outside of voice acting, Blaylock was the weekday evening announcer for WRR 101, and he worked for the station for more than 10 years. He also appeared in stage plays in Dallas, and acted in the “Living History” program where he portrayed real-life historical figures in period costume to give talks to schoolchildren. He also worked as a boom operator for sound recordings of films shot in the United States and Europe.

Thanks to jlaking and getchman for the news tip.

Featured image: Facebook/WRR 101
Source: Calvario Funeral Home

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If you’ve got 25 grand lying around, you might be able to buy this life-sized anime girl statue

Really, is there any more sensible way to spend that money than in obtaining a 1:1-scale figure of the female lead of one of anime’s most popular harem series?

Just like human beings need a strong sense of identity for a rich, fulfilling life, so too does an anime series need to understand exactly what itself is in order to be successful. In the case of To Love-Ru and its follow-up To Love-Ru Darkness, the people in charge of the anime and manga know that while they’ve got science fiction and comedy elements, it’s the harem aspects that really make it popular.

So it wasn’t too shocking last year when manufacturer Design Coco produced a life-size stature of To Love-Ru’s Momo. But like I said, To Love-Ru is a harem series, and you can’t have a harem with just one girl, so Design Coco is back with a 1:1-scale figure of Momo’s older sister Lala.

Made of fiber-reinforced plastic, the Lala statue stands 173.5 centimeters (68.3 inches) tall and is 65 centimeters across at its widest point, so this is targeted at not just people with a lot of space for the character in their heart, but also a lot of room in their home to devote to displays of fandom.

The manufacturer touts the figure as being a faithful and thorough recreation of Lala’s “galactic-class nice body,” which is amply displayed by her skimpy swimsuit.

▼ Or maybe this is lingerie? The product description doesn’t really seem too concerned about nitty-gritty fashion semantics.

Lala, for the most part, may look like an ordinary (though extremely well-endowed) Earth girl, she’s actually an alien from the planet Deviluke, as evidenced by her tail.

▼ No, I’m not talking about her butt. She literally has a tail.

And while Design Coco’s work is lovingly lascivious, that doesn’t mean they put in a half-effort on less provocative parts of the figure. The detail work on Lala’s flowing hair, for example, is rather impressive.

And for those still on the fence about whether they’d like to buy this statue or not, the manufacturers would also apparently really like you to consider the contours of Lala’s feet and mouth.

However, between the figure’s size, quality, and limited quantities (only 10 units will be produced), it commands a hefty price of 2.8 million yen (approximately US$25,260). Moreover, to even be allowed to drop that much cash on this piece of anime merch, you’ll have to be randomly selected from among a pool of would-be buyers.

For those willing to throw their hat in the ring, Shueisha (publisher of the To Love-Ru manga) is accepting purchase applications online here between now and May 31. Winners will be informed by June 2, so if you’re feeling lucky, you’ll want to start clearing out some floor space over the summer.

Source: Shueisha via IT Media
Images: Shueisha (edited by SoraNews24)


Experience Attack on Titan in a whole new way with special planetarium screenings this summer

Relive that day for yourself, this summer in Tokyo.

This summer, two Konica Minolta planetariums in Tokyo – the “Tenkū in Tokyo Skytree Town” theatre in Oshiage and “Manten in Sunshine City” in Ikebukuro – will be showing special screenings of an Attack on Titan story made for the planetariums.

Fans of the wildly popular manga and anime series are sure to remember how it all began “that day” when the titans breached the city walls which protected them.

That day, the human race remembered the terror of being dominated by them, and the shame of being held captive in a birdcage…

That birdcage, being the walls protecting the city, is now the walls of the planetarium as the audience becomes part of the story itself. The show, titled Shingeki no Kyojin IN THE DOME ~Heishitachi no Hoshizora~ (Attack on Titan IN THE DOME ~Soldiers’ Starry Sky~), utilizes the planetariums’ 360-degree layout and intense surround sound acoustics to fully bring viewers into the story, in a new retelling of the hopelessness of that day.

Showings at Tenkū in Tokyo Skytree Town will run from Saturday, May 20 until Sunday, October 1. Showings at Manten in Sunshine City will start the following week on Saturday, May 27 and run until Sunday, October 29.

A special weekday-only event will also be held at both venues during those dates, in which you can use your smartphone to play a riddle-solving game along with characters from the anime, Eren, Levi, and Armin. Those who solve the riddle will win special limited-addition stickers.

Show schedules can be found on the planetarium websites, here for Tenkū and here for Manten. Ticket reservations can also be made online up to 14 days in advance. We can’t guarantee that it will be better than the live-action movie, but it’s sure to be an intense experience!

Source: @ Press
Top image: Kinoca Minolta Planetarium


Keep cockroaches at bay with Japanese bug-hater’s clever, non-chemical idea

Home-made “bombs” aren’t lethal, let you swap insect invaders for a pleasant smell.

With spring half-way done, it won’t be long until the weather gets hot and humid in Japan. But while the summer months are perfect for a trip to the beach or one of Japan’s rooftop beer gardens, things can be quite a bit unpleasant at home, as the warmer part of the year is also when you’re most likely to have cockroaches showing up.

Disgusting to look at and hard to kill, the ideal solution, of course, is to prevent roaches from hanging out in your home in the first place. To that end, Japanese Twitter user @adreamorreality has a simple, non-chemical solution.

You only need two things (or three, if you count a spoon for scooping): dried peppermint, and empty tea bags, which in Japan you can pick up for less than a buck a pack at 100 yen stores. Fill the tea bags with peppermint, close them up, and place them wherever you’re concerned about cockroaches making an unwanted appearance, such as your kitchen or closets.

While @adreamorreality affectionately calls the bundles “mint bombs,” they’re not explosive booby traps. Instead, the scent of the oils present in the peppermint is highly repulsive to cockroaches, and so the packets work as non-lethal repellants. In spots that are ordinarily especially attractive to the pests, such as underneath the sink, @adreamorreality recommends leaving two mint pouches.

@adreamorreality says she used to encounter cockroaches in her home several times a year, but since enacting her “mint bomb” defense plan, she hasn’t seen a single one. That definitely makes this deterrent sound like a great idea, instead of waiting until after you spot a cockroach and relying on freezing sprays, vacuum guns, or the courage of other people to take care of the problem.

Source: Hachima Kiko
Featured image: Twitter/@adreamorreality

Top image: Wikipedia/Tagishsimon (edited by SoraNews24)


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Japan’s Zelda: Hyrule Lifestyle merch includes Master Sword umbrella, “secret” music sound sensor

Make your everyday life a little more legendary with a Hylian shield shoulder bag and other Nintendo nods.

Merchandiser Banpresto’s Ichiban Kuji lottery system is an unusual sales framework. The way it works is customers walk into a 7-Eleven convenience store or participating bookshop, arcade, or specialty store that sells the raffle tickets, pay the fee, and win a randomly determined prize.

Of course, in order to convince people to go for something without knowing exactly what they’re going to get, Banpresto has to offer some pretty tempting prizes. In the past, those have included adorable sleeping bag Pikachus and R2-D2 cookware, and now Ichiban Kuji is teaming up with video game giant Nintendo’s Legend of Zelda franchise.

Many of the prizes may look like miniature toys in the tweeted photo, but they’re actually all practical items even adult fans can use in their daily lives, in keeping with the collection’s name of Hyrule Lifestyle. Those Hylian shields, for example? They’re really 35-centimeter (14-inch) single-strap shoulder bags. Wondering why the Master Sword looks shorter than usual? Because it expands into an umbrella.

The pixilated heart is, in fact, a serving dish that measures 20 centimeters in length. At the top right of the photo are rubberized key chains and key covers, the coolest of which turns your key into a sword that original 8-bit Link is thrusting. There are also card cases for IDs or train passes, drinking glasses, and a Breath of the Wild alarm clock that wakes you with Zelda’s voice.

But the most imaginative prizes are actually the two nondescript boxes, one green and the other brown. They’re sensor-equipped speakers that you can rig to go off when you open a door or drawer, and they play either the iconic, instantly recognizable pieces of music that have accompanied opening a treasure chest or finding a secret passage in the Zelda games for decades.

The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Lifestyle Ichiban Kuji campaign starts on May 20, and, as is the norm for Ichiban Kuji, will continue for an undisclosed amount of time or until all prizes have been claimed. This iteration is priced at 620 yen (US$5.60) per play (Rupees not accepted as payment).

Source: Banpresto via Hachima Kiko
Featured image: Twitter/@ZeldaOfficialJP