Sakurazawa Kousei no Kirakira Lesson


Company: Broccolli
Based on: Original
Released: 2010.07.28
Official Site: http://www.broccoli.co.jp/cd/sp/lovelesson/

Koisuru Lesson is a series in which you date your instructor/teacher. Each vol. has a different character that teaches something (cooking, violin, English, etc). The setting is that you are both a student and the girlfriend of said character. There are six CD's in total, divided in pairs, and the characters make cameo appearances in the CD they are paired with.

This CD has Sakurazawa Kousei (CV: Suzumura Kenichi) who teaches Ikebana and is the heir of a famous Ikebana school. He is a bit of an airhead and rather lively, and incredibly wealthy apparently. In the first track he is visiting cafe Platina, which is owned by Nashimoto Fumiya (CV: Hirakawa Daisuke). He wonders where he should take you on a date, with options like the opera, a cruise, or a helicopter flight. For someone who is only 19 years old, he seems to have a lot of money to spend.

The second track is a short scene from one of his lessons. Despite his airheaded and genki nature, he really does seem to be serious when it comes to Ikebana. Although he definitely shows a soft spot for you.

The third track is your date, you said you wanted to go shopping and thus you go shopping together. You can imagine how shopping with someone who has too much money is. Kousei picks all kinds of things for you to try, and the shop assistant is all too willing to bring even more things for you to try. Personally, I felt like a dressing doll.

In the last track Kousei takes you to a hotel. No not for that, it is apparently pretty famous for picking only real Ikebana masters to do their flower arrangements, so Kousei wanted to show that to you. On your way back he says he wished that you could always be at his side, which ends in him sort of proposing to you. Of course when you say yes, he immediately starts making al sorts of plans for the wedding xD

Kousei sounds a bit childish, but genki characters have never been my thing so I suppose that is simply a matter of preference. (although he is the youngest character in the series). I would have liked it if they showed more of the student-teacher part of your relationship, but Kousei doesn't really have the personality for that so maybe other characters show that a bit more.

Like I described above, Nashimoto Fumiya also makes an appearance in this CD. The contrast between the calm and gentle Fumiya and the rather impulsive Kousei is pretty amusing to listen to, but if anything it made me want to listen to his CD.

This is a cute CD, unfortunately for me I'm just not that into genki characters like Kousei. I like the cameo thing, and the fact that there are a few other voiced characters (the women from your Ikebana class, the shop assistant). Somehow this makes a CD much more lively.


Weekly News Post

It is almost new year :D I don't know whether anyone has anything special planned, but have an awesome night, watch out around fireworks, but above all enjoy!!!

Tap Trap Love
The official site for Tap Trap Love is now officially open, which means lots of new info. This is a quick translation but the story is as follows:

The year 20XX - Just after the end of World War III.

The Capital of Japan - Tokyo - is overflowing with people and in no longer the place it used to be.
The now multinational centre “City”, called “B-Valley” as the last remains of it’s former nickname, is transforming into a lawless district where the two largest groupt, the SS and the Horde are fighting for dominance.

The only thing that excites the young people in B-Valley is dance. Streetdance, jazz, classical…the district is overflowing with all kinds of dance. What they long for is dancing at the ‘Atomic Theatre’ at the other side of the wall*.

The Heroine who has lost her memories is one of those people.

While undergoing bitter-sweet training lessons with the members of the dance team, she aims for a new stage. To find her past, as well as a new self.

This is certainly, different from what I expected. I expected sweet romance with a dance theme, instead they give us post-war (and probably post apocalyptic) amnesia, with a dance theme. Also, am I the only one thinking that they could have been a bit more subtle with the references?

But the story is not the only thing we get more info on, there is now more info on the characters as well:
From left to right:
Cap (CV: Kamiya Hiroshi): Member of the dance team Euphoria. Gentle and elegant, but his mindset is the most hard-boiled in the entire team.
Dr. Ginger (CV: Itou Kentarou): A doctor in the CITY district. He mainly performs illegal operations, for which he demands a large sum of money, but at hart he is a gentle person.
Joy (CV: Fujiwara Yuuki): The moodmaker of the team, and a DJ at a club called "Justice".
Nico: The heroine. Lost her memories and suffers from aphonia, and communicates through her cellphone. She has a part time job at a hotdog stand. (Oh sue me but I totally thought this would be a shota character, instead it is actually the heroine xD)
Lee (CV: Shimozaki Nobunaga): The heroine her friend, and he also works part-time at the same hotdog stand. He is aiming to become an artist and dreams of drawing his paintings on the wall.
Jackie (CV: Maeno Tomoaki): The leader of Euphoria. Because his hair covers his eyes it is hard to understand his expressions. He doesn't talk much but he is very virtuous.
Leo (CV: Nakai Kazuya): A member of Euphoria, he is a bit of a troublemaker who picks fights easily. He can't hide his emotions, and it takes a while before he can get along with people, but once he trusts you he does so forever.

I am now officially at a complete loss as to what kind of work this is.


Honeymoon vol.2: Kousaka Otoya

Honeymoon vol.2 香坂音哉

Company: Fortissimo
Based on: Original
Released: 2011.12.28
Official Site: http://www.otome-ff.jp/

In the Honeymoon series you get a chance to go on your honeymoon with you brand new husband. Scenes from the proposal, the wedding, your honeymoon, and when you return are all included. In this second vol. your groom is Kousaka Otoya, the vocalist of the band Shine.

Where vol.1 started with the proposal, you'll have to wait a little before you are proposed to this time. After not being able to see you due to spending most of his time in the recording studio for the band their new album, Otoya says he'll take you anywhere you want during his vacation. You say you want to go to a spa resort, and thus you fly off to the Maldives.

On the airport you still have to hide from a couple of fans because Otoya his agency forbids relationships, but once you are at the resort you don't have to worry about anything. It is only after arriving at your floating villa hat Otoya proposes to you. (and you accept, of course).

There is one track for each day that you spend at the resort. You go snorkelling, where you almost drown and Otoya has to save you, picnicking on a deserted island, and get a massage at the spa. The fifth day you spend at the beach, where you see another couple getting married. Otoya tells you that you can also get married at this resort, and you decide to hold a ceremony yourself (although Otoya says you'll hold another ceremony back in Japan so that your family can celebrate with you there). The last vacation track is the night after you held the ceremony, your first night as a 'married couple'.

The last two tracks are after you have returned to Japan. Otoya gives a press conference where he announces that he just got married (he even didn't inform his agency only until after you got married). Otoya is an absolute ass to the press during the conference, which is amusing to hear. The final track has the two of you walking around Shibuya together, with Otoya being happy about the fact that you can finally go on a date without being secretive.

I was hoping vol.2 would be a little less sweet than the first one, and my wish has been granted. While Otoya is still plenty sweet to you, he is a bit more forcible. That and the gap between his behaviour towards you, and the complete ass that he is towards the press is amusing. The band he is on must be selling pretty good too, not only does the trip seem very expensive, he also rents the entire spa at one point.

Toriumi is pretty energetic during his cast talk (Honeymoon vol twoooooo xD). His final comment is pretty amusing too: "If anyone thinks "ahh, I want to get married" or "I wish my boyfriend proposes to mee soon", in that case, just get married already!".  So you've heard it, get married. And fast ;P

This CD was a little less sweet, making it more interesting to me. Otoya spending money as if it is water is a bit unrealistic but hey, if someone is willing to spend that much money on you, you probably shouldn't complain.


Danna Catalogue vol.01

旦那カタログ Vol.1 特集:強引な旦那様 VS 優しい旦那様

Company: Honey Bee
Based on: Original
Released: 2009.01.30
Official site: http://www.honeybee-cd.com/master_with.html

Danna Catalogue is a series that lets you choose a husband and experience a few moments of married life. Each vol has two characters that are usually the opposite of each other personality wise. This first vol starts with a forceful, and a sweet husband.

The CD starts with both characters doing an introduction, afterwards Asaya Kouichi (CV: Ishida Akira) is the first to be your temporary husband. The first track is his proposal, which he does on your birthday. In Engrish. And then you don't understand him so he is forced to say it all over again in Japanese. Shame on you.

The next 14 tracks are all short scenes from your life together. Of course he acts like the perfect husband in each one. His character description states that he is a bit forceful, which is mostly bashfulness (but then afterwards he manages to say stuff that I would never be able to say without going red like a tomato).

The second half of the CD is devoted to Kanbe Hitoshi (CV: Hirakawa Daisuke), who is a sweet type. Incredibly sweet type. He looks at the world through a cotton candy pink cloud type of sweet. From the beginning to the end he talks to you in a polite manner, which feels a bit strange.

Like Kouichi, his first track is his proposal, and the tracks afterwards are short scenes again. Hitoshi did make me laugh a lot, but mostly because he is such an incredible goof ball. He is like a little puppy that you just can't help but to look after. He mentions that 'you had some lovers quarrels at times' but I don't believe it. With that personality of his it would be impossible to start a fight even if you were trying your absolute best.

It is funny to hear certain things return in both cases. But because they are both acting like the perfect husband the outcome is usually the same, but the conversation surrounding it is different due to their different personalities. I know that they are supposed to be ideal and everything, but if you are ideal in every aspect it becomes a bit scary instead. Giving them at least one fault would make them a bit more human.

Of course, comparing these two characters is unavoidable. Personally, I like Kouichi more. Hirakawa-san is one of my fav seiyuu, but even for his standards Hitoshi is just too sweet. Kouichi sounds like a lot more fun to be with to me.

If you feel like spending some sugar coated time with a perfect husband, this is the series for you. It is another perfect example of sugar spice and everything nice though (wait, maybe without the spice).

It did however, decide one thing after listening to this. When I get married, I want to do the 'goodbye have a nice day at work kiss on the cheek' thing at least once in my life. It is so cliché that I just have to.

Diabolik Lovers Vol.1: Ayato

I was originally planning to make Christmas related reviews, but that plan met with some problems and so I bring you this instead:


Company: Rejet
Based on: Original
Released: 2011.12.21
Official site: http://rejetweb.jp/dialover/index.html

Diabolik Lovers is a series that leaves you at the mercy of sadistic vampires. The project features drama CD's, radio broadcasts on NicoNico Live, and a PSP game by Otomate. The drama CD's are the first to be released, and this is vol.1 featuring Ayato.

As this series is all about sadist vampires, it should be no surprise that Ayato is a Sadist. With a capital S. No kidding, he truly is scary.  But to give a little more information: Ayato is one of the six vampire siblings in their family, and has two triplet brothers. He is good at sports, hates studying, and has an enormous ego. But you won't really find much of that in this CD. In fact, almost none of it. Although he does contemplate to do some sports to kill some time.

As the CD starts you suddenly find yourself inside an iron maiden, together with Ayato (apparently he sleeps in one, although it is larger than normal and the spikes have been removed). You have no memory of how you got there and completely freak out. Turns out Ayato drugged you and led you here.

Don't think the situation improves much once you are out though. The sun is still setting, so it is a little 'early' and Ayato wants to kill time. There is some sports equipment in his room so you suggest doing something with that. Ayato rejects most things until you find a jump rope... and he decides that it would be a good idea to tie you up with it.

Luckily you sort of manage to escape that fate, but Ayato has become thirsty. And you are the only drink available. He gives you the chance to at least decide where he will bite you, if you answer his quiz correctly. The questions are just there for his ego, but you lose the game and are forced to drink a suspicious potion instead. Which apparently makes your blood smell even more delicious to Ayato.

And this is where the dummy head mic comes into play. While Ayato ties your hands with his necktie and starts to kiss and bite you all over, you get to live through all of that whispered into your ear. Believe me it is killing, and very very scary.

I... honestly don't know what to say about this CD. To begin with I first needed some time to calm down. Midorin his voice is very sexy (especialy in the last part) but the CD itself is so scary. I mean, he locks you in an iron maiden, threatens to tie you up, eventually ties up at least your hands, bites you all over, including your tongue (that has got to hurt) while enjoying himself immensely. For now, I will just say it was a biiiiit different from what I expected.

I had expected that it would have some sort of... I'd almost say plot, but that might not be the most suitable word. But I expected that the CD would somehow show how you met, and then some daily stuff, before things would go Sadistic. Instead, I wake up locked in an iron maiden, Ayato sees me as his established plaything and I seem somewhat used to it. I think I need a bit of context here....

Character-wise, the fact that Ayato is a Sadist and a bully (and sounds incredibly sexy) is perfectly clear. But I somewhat expected that this CD would be a sort of an introduction to the character (and the world). Instead it is -like someone on Hibiki stated- "40minutes of sadistic foreplay". And a lot scarier than I thought it would be.

This really was a lot scarier than I thought it would be. I'm not sure about this yet. Part of me enjoyed it (I am turning into a do-M, noooooo) but part of me really hoped that there would have been a bit more to this CD than me being a plaything.

I also wonder what kind of game this is going to be. How is it going to work? Or more importantly; what the hell is going to happen to you in that game, because if it is going to get even scarier than this...*shudders*. And to think, Ayato is a pretty 'normal' Sadist. Some of his brothers are also violent or yandere... eep!!!


Weekly News Post

One day late. Managing Christmas holidays at my parents and keeping a steady release schedule turns out to be quite a challenge. Although I have to admit that my PS3 is guilty of stealing some of my time, most of it is taken by amigurumi. I never thought the day would come that I would be crocheting untill 3am because I felt I almost got it this time (as you can guess, I am pretty hopeless with it). But, on to the news.

Kannou Jikan 7
With the start of a new series I expected (hoped?) that Kannou Jikan would end, but instead Hituzigumo just announced vol 7. 春の賛歌と神隠しの岩屋 (Haru no Sanga to Kamikakushi no Iwaya) is a story about a Demon who falls in love with a god and locks her away in a cave. But because he years to see her, he visits her once a year... While I was contemplating whether or not I would force myself to listen this time I noticed the seiyuu: Hirakawa Daisuke. Damn you Hituzigumo, you just know that I will be forced to listen to it now. The release is set for 2012.03.02. And is that Sesshoumaru on te cover on the right?

While reading up on their blog I discovered that the series would continue; it is stated that it would continue in a blog entry posted on 17 november. But there was anothing interesting (and useless) discovery. Remember Hituzigumo their Aprils Fool joke? The so called exercise video? Yeah, that is Subaru, the character for the first Amemakura CD.

Lovers Only
A somewhat surprising new was announced by Momo & Grapes. Lovers Only is described as a CD "in which popular seiyuu whisper a love story that is slightly adult, just for you". The short summary describes the sales manager Ichiyanagi who goes to a business trip to China with a subordinate (I assume, that will be you). The business part is going well, however during the trip the already married Ichiyanagi falls for his subordinate...  The CD is voiced by Morikawa Toshiyuki, and is set for release on 2012.02.28.


Oujisama (warai) series vol.04 ~Oujisama ha Kaeru~

I missed a post yesterday *is shot by Cinderella* Sorry about that. But without further delay:

王子様 (笑)シリーズ  ドラマCD 第4巻 ~王子様はカエル〜

Company: Frontierworks
Based on: Fairytale
Released: 2011.03.24
Official Site: http://www.fwinc.co.jp/princewww

The 'Oujisama (warai)' series re-imagines various well know fairy tales. The stories are told from the perspective of the prince and in a rather hilarious way. This time, the story of 'The Frog Prince' is re-imagined, although there are a few things surprisingly close to the original story,

(For those unfamiliar with the series "Cinderella" and "Rapunzel" refer to the princes from those stories)

The story begins when Cinderella (CV: Suzumura Kenichi), Rapunzel (CV: Ishida Akira) and Aladdin (CV: Miyano Mamoru) meet at some sort of social event. Rapunzel mentions Cinderella his real name (prince Charming) and nearly gets shot. Afterwards Aladdin almost suffers the same fate. The three of them quarrel a bit over their new lifestyle now they are married, when suddenly a frog (CV: Sugita Tomokazu) joins in on the conversation.

It turns out that Cinderella once borrowed something from the frog (who is the prince of the frog kingdom) and got it dirty, so now the frog wants Cinderella to make it up to him by fixing a date with a certain princess who is sitting near the fountain. Everybody keeps switching sides in helping or not helping the frog, most notably Aladdin who switches sides depending on where he expects to gain the most profit.

Of course, the Frog eventually turns into a human (which grosses him out, leading to a funny scene where he is grossed out by his perfect appearance), but I was surprised that this happens not because of a kiss (like in the modern fairytale) but because he was thrown against the wall by the princess (like in the original)

The zadankai (where all the characters gather for a drink and chat away) this time mostly revolves around whether the frog (who they keep referring to as 'Kaeru' (Japanese for frog) has gotten used to being a human yet. He turns back into a frog for a while, and to 'prevent confusion because this is a drama CD' they make him say "geko" after every sentence when he is a frog. The other hilarious thing is that Kaeru still doesn't know 'how human babies are made'. The zadankai fades out while Rapunzel tries to explain this in a cute way.

A special mention should probably be made for Takemoto-san, who voices 3(!) roles in this drama: Cinderella's younger brother, The servant of the princess, and the Genie. Not to mention he did his recording alone. I must say he did a really good job of keeping these roles completely different. I also like how they made one character mistake him for another, just so that he could state who he is at moment. Several times in the drama. It was a good way to avoid confusion.

The cast talk is ok I guess. They all need to talk about what their favourite animal is, but Sugita-san is busier doing impressions of his grandfather. While Suzumura-san and Ishida-san simply talk about cat's or dogs, Miyano talks about elephants...

Maybe I should have listened to this before listening to vol.5, but it was a lot less hilarious. It is still however a fun drama CD (partly because I love Cinderella, and starting from this CD Aladdin as well). But now that I've listened to the entire series, bring on the next two!!!


Yukishiro Gakuen no Yukai na Hitobito ~Kaichou wa Imouta ga Suki~

雪白学園のゆかいな人々 ~生徒会長は妹が好き~

Company: Mujina
Based on: Original
Released: 2010.09.15
Official Site: http://mujina.kkjinnai.co.jp/index.html

Yukishiro Gakuen no Yukai na Hitobito is a series of loosely connected drama CD's by taking place at the same school and some recurring characters. Each drama CD features a rather eccentric student and his situation. This first CD features the student council president, who loves his little sister (read: you) a bit too much.

Like the track title promises, the first track immediately starts with Kagami Shuu (CV: Sugita Tomokazu) declaring his love for his little sister. Of course, as an older brother, not in a sexual way. According to him anyway.

In the following tracks Shuu keeps doting on and expressing his love for his little sister in various situations: waking her up, walking to school, changing the rules of the school just so that he can be with his little sister during the school festival, while baking cake, while shopping, while skating. In every situation Shuu acts like a lovestruck little sister obsessed idiot. And it is hilarious.

Shuu has two friends: Toukai Azumi (CV: Sakuragi Akito) who always places number two on everything (on purpose) and loves glasses a bit too much. And Kawaguchi Masao (CV: Furukawa Tetsuto) who is normal and generic in every way and for some reason is always told off for that.

While the normal tracks are already complete crack there are three that are even more chaos. Each character has a dream of the three of them doing something weird. Shuu and Azumi have a dream of them being Power Rangers, while Masao dreams of them in an rpg setting, turning those tracks into in hilarious parodies. Of course Shuu still loves his sister too much, even in those dreams.

And in case you can't get enough of Shuu his infatuation with his sister, there are three (short) tracks full of him saying lovestruck and idiotic things to his little sister.

Shuu acting like a lovestruck siscon is already hilarious, but when the other two come in to the conversation it gets even better. In between all of the crack there are also random references to well known anime. Like Shuu saying far to specific that 'his sister doesn't own a black note and doesn't kill people' (death note) or Azumi outright saying that he wants the role of Legolas if they are going to link this to the Lord of the Rings. Among other things.

This is pure crack. At it's best. I don't think there is a single serious sentence in this entire CD. Azumi and Masao are returning characters, and I'm looking forward to hearing more of them. I would have loved to hear a cast talk for this, but sadly there is no such thing.


Yoru Cafe Tokidoki Garcon no Susume


Company: Luv Records
Based on: Manga
Released: 2006.09.24
Official Site: http://www.luv-records.jp/title/yorucafe/

Yoru Cafe is ased on the manga of the same name, however this drama CD is an original story that takes place 3 years after the events of the manga. 'Queen's Cafe' is a cafe that is only open at night. the owner, Hina, and the three waiters Sawatari Soushi, Yukimura Yoshisumi, and Nanjou Nozomu run the cafe with the four of them.

By the time of this story Hina (CV: Saitou Yuka) and Soushi (CV: Maeno Tomoaki) have already married. Yukimura (CV: Ono Daisuke) has become a successful writer,  and Nozomu (CV: Kakihara Tetsuya) works as a civil servant. Queen's Cafe was closed, but they are re-opening it for one night.

The story begins with Hina trying to get Soushi to bake the cakes for the cafe with her, he doesn't want to at first but agrees to help her. Unfortunately Hina drinks a bit too much alcohol while baking and falls asleep drunk (she has a bit of a bad habit with alcohol) and Soushi ends up staying up all night to finish the cakes on his own.

The next day the four of them meet to set up the cafe, but it turns out that the place they rented for this is more of a bar than a cafe. The bar is still stocked with every possible type of alcohol, and so when the customers come many of them order alcohol and no-one orders any cake. This depresses Hina and she starts to drink, causing her to near sexually assault Nozomu and Yukimura when they come to check up one her...

This is a sweet story, and although I find Hina slightly annoying she is hilarious when she gets drunk. However, I have never read the manga, which makes me feel like I am missing out on a lot of background information here. The story is perfectly clear, but I imagine there must have been a lot going on before Hina and Soushi finally married and things like that.

I find the freetalk mildly amusing. Mostly because only the male seiyuu get to say something while Saito-san seems to be completely absent. It is perfectly clear what the selling point of this CD was, haha.

I think this CD is mostly interesting for those who know the manga. It is ok, but a bit generic on it's own, so if you don't know the manga your time is probably better spent listening to something else.


Weekly News Post

Tap Trap Love
A teaser site for Tap Trap Love has been opened, although there is nothing there yet except for a larger version of group illustration and the announcement that 'the site will be opened soon'. Ah well, at least we have some eyecandy now (the three on the right are already my fav characters~)

A 'trial disc' will also be sold at the winter comiket, so we will get a chance to meet the characters this year.

Kippei his character illustration is finally up! Visit the official site to see a larger version.

I'll be honest, his design isn't quite to my liking, but I'm still interested in the concept, so I might still give it a try.

Taiga (CV: Taniyama Kisho) his voice sample has been added to the official site, go and listen if you're interested!


If I were to, say, post translations. Would pdf be an acceptable format?


Honeymoon vol.1: Hanamori Yuuto

Honeymoon vol.1 花森優人 

Company: Fortissimo
Based on: Original
Released: 2011.11.28
Official Site: http://www.otome-ff.jp/work/work07.html

In they Honeymoon series you go, well... on your honeymoon. Starting from the proposal to the day of your wedding, the entire honeymoon and finally your return home, everything is there. Your groom in this first CD is Hanamori Yuuto (CV: Hirakawa Daisuke) who works as a flower arranger.

The setting is that you and Yuuto both have watching movies as a hobby, and it is during that you are watching a movie together at home that he proposes to you. The wedding scene is fairly short, it just has Yuuto commenting on how pretty you are and giving you a wedding bouquet that he made for you himself. Because the wedding was actually mentioned as a scene in various (official) descriptions I expected something a bit longer, but then again if that were the case the series would have probably been named 'Wedding' instead of 'Honeymoon'.

After that comes your honeymoon. Because you admire Italy from all of the films you have seen together you go there. In order you visit Milan, Verona, Venezia, Florance, and Rome. Of course you visit all kinds of famous places while you are there. Yuuto apparently learned a bit of Italian for this trip. Luckily they didn't make Hirakawa-san speak Italian (I seriously feared for that) but his does say "Scusi" and "Grazie"a few times. Especially when he says the first he sounds so cute!!

Speaking of cute, Yuuto has a very sweet personality. Despite that he is by no means a doormat. He has thought of and arranged almost everything, and he loves to tease you a little bit. I suppose you could describe him as gentle and caring? Which matches with the concept of him being a flower arranger.

Overall, the CD is simply extremely sweet (Hirakawa-san himself actually remarks on this is the cast comment). No chance to insert sweet lines, or words, or actions is left untouched. Although there is a bit of humour in some places, like Yuuto wanting to 'consume' your first honeymoon night but you simply fall asleep because you are so tired from the flight xD When he actually does get to this point later on even that scene is extremely sweet though.

This is probably the sweetest honeymoon ever. To the point where it almost becomes a bit too much, but I suppose that when you are just married and living on a pink cloud of happiness this is sort of what your world looks like. Still, I hope vol.2 will be a bit less sweet.


Lord of the Rings: Shadow of the Past.

It is time, ladies and gentlemen, for a somewhat unexpected review:

Lord of the Rings Radio Drama Ep.01: Shadow of the Past

Company: BBC Radio
Based on: Book
Released: 1981

I'm sure this is a bit of an unexpected review choice. It is 30 years old, as if there isn't enough recent stuff to review, and it isn't even Japanese. BUT it is a drama CD. And that is all it needs to qualify. The reasons why I chose to listen to this are simple: I never knew it existed, I've been meaning to read the books again but I simply don't have the time, and the moment I discovered it I was immediately exited. And that was when I knew I just had to listen to it.

So a bit of an introduction first. There is obviously no need to introduce the story, I believe everyone has at least heard about it, whether you've actually read the books or seen the movies or not. But as for the radio drama itself, it was first aired in 1981 in 26 half hour episodes every week from March to August, and re-aired in 1982, but this time in 13 one hour episodes. I don't know exactly when, but it was eventually published as a 13 CD set and on tape (on tape!! it was actually published on cassette tape!! Excuse my nostalgia).

Apparently this wasn't the first time that the BBC adapted the Lord of the Rings into a radio drama, they made a condensed 12 episode version in 1955(!). Tolkien himself however apparently highly disliked that adaption. The radio drama from 1981 was later re-published in 2002 with new music cues and some other small edits when the movies were popular. (And yet, I never knew there was an audio drama. Then again, I wasn't into drama at that time). More info on wiki and here.

Anyway, this is the first 1hour episode, called 'the Shadow of the past'. You might expect that to get the entire story into a radio drama you would cram a lot into one episode, but that isn't the case. While not as elaborate on details as the books, the drama tells the entire story and is paced relatively calm. After this first episode, Frodo hasn't even left the Shire yet.

The drama starts with Gollum searching for the ring and being captured by the forces of Mordor, after which we shift to Bilbo and Frodo preparing for their birthday party. Bilbo uses his vanishing trick at the party and Frodo inherits Bags End and the ring, after which 17 peaceful years pass before Gandalf returns and informs Frodo that he, in fact, holds the One Ring. Sam eaves drops on their conversation and the result is that both of them will have to leave on a journey.

If I remember correctly, that follows the book pretty accurately. And unless my memory is deceiving me many lines are taken directly from the books (my copy of the book is at my parents so I can't check though). I liked the atmosphere was done with the music and faint background sounds. Knowing what is going to happen, hearing Sam working in the garden while Gandalf and Frodo were talking was a really nice touch (you can hear him get closer, and suddenly stop when he hears that Frodo will have to leave).

Gollum was done very good as well. Of course the image and sound of Gollum in the movies is very characteristic and it took a little while to get used to this 'new' voice, but the actor portraying him does a wonderful job and you instantly can see the nasty but pitiful creature in your mind.

In fact, my only problem with listening to this were the voice actors. Not that they aren't good, on the contrary, they are very good! But I have some trouble keeping the voices apart, though I expect that that is simply a matter of getting used to them. (And to listening a to drama in English!).

This was my first time listening to a drama in English, and despite the fact that it is a very old one, it was a great experience and a lot of fun. The fact that it follows the book so closely makes this drama really interesting I guess (although I miss the "Hobbit theme"). The BBC has made lots and lots of drama's, including every single Sherlock Holmes story, a lot of Doctor Who, and tons of famous books, so I might try and listen to one every once in a while.




Company: Frontierworks
Based on: Manga
Released: 2007.03.21

Superior is a story about the hero Exa who travels with his companions to find the 'ideal land' by order of the prince. Exa his actual dream is to restore peace to the world so that monsters and humans can coexist by killing the Demon king, however he doesn't know that said demon king is actually female and has fallen in love with him.

The story starts with Ex (CV: Morikubou Shoutarou) and his companions Lakshri (CV: Morita Masakazu) Sheila (CV: Kuwashima Houko), Angelica (Kugimiya Rie) being summoned by prince Juno (CV: Saiga Mitsuki) to search for the 'ideal land' where monsters and humans are rumoured to live in peace.

And so they set off. The personalities of all the characters are a but off though. Lakshri is a perverted ore-sama, Sheila seems to be only interested in food and talks like a cat (with a lot of nya~), Angelica looks and sounds cute put is actually a very powerful mage. And they are followed around by the monster Okina, who looks like an old man with many arms coming out of his face and has fallen in love with Exa...

On their way to the 'ideal land' they come across a lot of problems, partly caused by their own actions, partly caused by the guardians Reek (CV: Hoshi Souichirou) and Jin (CV: Sugiyama Noriaki) who try to keep anyone from entering the Ideal Land. And then there is the 'copy demon queen' (CV: Kaida Yuuko) who was created to take the demon queen her place while she is away and her servant Kagami (CV: Koyasu Takehito) who also come to wreak havoc...

This drama CD was a lot more light-hearted than I expected. The beginning sounds serious, but after that it first takes a trip down the humour lane. Only near the end it becomes serious again. I'm not saying it is a bad thing though, especially Lakshri creates a lot of funny situations and conversations, but it is not what I expected from the cover and the description. (I have never read the manga, so I don't know what it is like)

In the cast talk they talk about what the 'perfect place' would be like. All kinds of interesting a ridiculous stuff is mentioned: A place where there are a lot of dogs and cats, where you can get drunk without forgetting things, where you can keep eating without getting fat, Where there is no need for money, Where Hoshi Souchichirou doesn't exist (he keeps interrupting Koyasu-sama), Where the trains are not overcrowded, that kind of stuff.

I expected a much darker drama, but it was actually very light-hearted although there is a very serious plot going on in the background. The randomness was fun, but not very special. Lakshri and his idiot behaviour create for a lot of funny moments though.


Moe Koi


Company: Kuchikomi & Toukou Magazine
Based on: Original
Released: 2009.09.08

Moe Koi is based on all kinds of things otaku. Komine Kouki (CV: Kamiya Hiroshi) and Higuchi Touya (CV: Ono Daisuke) have both fallen for you. Touya has the advantage in that you both like anime, manga, and doujinshi, but Kouki simply fell for you at first sight and gets dragged into the otaku world. The CD was released as an extra with the October edition of the Kuchikomi & Toukou Magazine.

The CD starts with the three of you going to a doujinshi event, although you basically get sepparated as soon as it starts so Kouki and Touya end up walking around the event site together. Of course Kouki doesn't know the first thing about doujinshi so Touya explains it all to him.

After that are two tracks on which you go on a date with one of the two. On Kouki his date you go to Otome Road where he patiently waits until you are done doujin shopping and to a neko cafe (where he says some really sweet lines but you are to distracted by a cat to listen). On your date with Touya you visit a shop that sells supplies to draw manga and you go to Akiba. The tsundere maid at the end of the track was priceless.

Next up is a scene with the three of you together again. You are making a doujinshi to sell on an upcoming event, however it doesn't look like you are going to make the deadline so the two of them come to help (with Kouki hilariously misinterpreting the situation at first). When you start to fall asleep in the middle of the night Kouki tries to keep you awake by telling a doujinshi centred horror story, however you still fall asleep and don't listen to it. All turns out well in the end though, and to show your feelings of appreciation for Kouki his help you force him into a handmade maid outfit.

Both characters also get a short confession scene where they confess their love to you. Both are pretty cute. And full of moe, obviously.

Honestly, this CD is gold. It has so many funny moments. And the seiyuu seem to really have fun while recording this (especially OnoD). It is a bit surprising that Kouki is willing to go to otome road with you, but we'll just see it as proof that his love for you is so strong that he is willing to go shopping for BL doujinshi with you. Not to mention that both of them actually help you draw a BL manga, but hey.

I can't really choose between either of the two characters. Kouki is funny because he is trying his best while knowing absolutely nothing about the doujin world, while Touya has a light and flirty air about him. He is obviously a complete otaku, but says all kinds of moe lines in the process.

In the free talk OnoD is still having far to much fun, constantly saying 'koi! koi!'. They both talk about what they were really into during high school (OnoD = soccer, Kamiya Hiroshi = manga's by Takahashi Rumiko). To decide who can do the message to the listeners first they actually do rock-paper-scissors xD And I have no idea what is going on there in the end. Is that Kamiya-san really sneezing? or covering up a laugh? WTH xDDD

This drama CD was so much fun. Especially OnoD his acting was a lot of fun to listen to. All the jokes with anime/manga/doujin make it so much fun to listen to. Kouki being a noob in the world of doujin might be nothing but  a convenient plot device, but they played it well. If you are in for a laugh, or just want to hear Kamiya-san say "okaerinasaimase, goshujin-sama" you should really listen to this.

ps: I'm really sorry I can't find a good quality cover scan ( ;__ ;)


Karekoe ~Katei Kyoushi no Kare~


Company: Fluffy Bunny
Based on: Original
Released: 2011.07.21

Karekoe is a CD where your boyfriend gives you a phone call, so almost the entire CD is consist of phone calls. This second CD was released more than a year after the first, and this time Taniyama Kisho is your tutor. You've got a cold and he calls to check whether you are ok.

The CD begins when he calls you to ask whether you are OK, after receiving a message from your mother that he doesn't need to come today because you've got a cold. It soon turns out that you're energetic enough to talk with him, and you convince him to keep talking you for a while.

While generally acting cold and refusing all kinds of things, he eventually answers all of your questions, and even promises that you can come visit his room when you manage to get a full score on three of your tests. Sounds like you are quite a pushy girl.

After the main scenario there are a few other short ones. Two where you are visiting his house (you managed to get those full scores, apparently) and short phone calls for your birthday, Christmas, New Year, and finally a love confession.

Personality wise, he is a prototype tsundere. Always acting cold and refusing your advances, while he actually likes you a lot (granted, he is your tutor so he isn't really allowed to show interest in you as well). The confession scene is predictable, but somehow cute none the less.

Compared to the first one this CD has matured a lot. Instead of only the main scenario, there are a few short scenes this time as well, and a cast comment. The setting is very different of course. In the first CD you were living together with your boyfriend, while this time you are not yet officially dating.

The cast comment is very funny btw. It starts with Taniyama-san saying that he imagined the girl on the other side of the line to be incredibly cute, after which he starts to rattle on about having a cold and a story from when he had a cold a few years back. (and I mean rattle, he talks very fast).

Whether you like the setting more or less than the first CD is probably personal, but I think they improved a lot. The conversation already felt natural in the first CD and that is still the case, but I personally really like that they added a few short scenes as well.


Oujisama (warai) Yomikatari CD Vol.2

王子様(笑)シリーズ 読み語りCD ~君に捧ぐ物語~ 第2集

Company: Frontierworks
Based on: Fairy tales
Released: 2011.01.26
Official Site: http://www.fwinc.co.jp/princewww/

The original 2 entries to the Oujisama (warai) series told re-imagined version of a few well known fairy tales. The yomikatari CDs are a sort of spin-off CDs in which the princes from the main series read their own fairytale to you, but not without making side remarks.

This is paired with the second CD and has the princes from that CD read their own story, while the other two keep interupting and commenting on the story.

First up is Aladdin (CV: Miyano Mamoru) who starts by trying to read out the entire story of 1001 nights (the story of Aladdin is actually one of the stories told by Scheherazade) but the other two stop him and get him to tell only his own story. I have to admit, I only know the Disney version, so this had some surprises for me as well.

Next up is the Emperor from Taketori Monogatari, who reads his own story. He gets through the story fairly ok, but becomes so heartbroken by the end that he drowns his sorrows and ends up completely drunk. Aladdin also tends to remark on the fact that "your country is very strange at times". (Both the Emperor and Genji are from Japan, and the cultural differences between them and Aladdin were already used for humour in the main series).

Finally we have Genji (CV: Yoshino Hiroyuki), who intends to read all 54 chapters of the story, but the (now completely drunk) Emperor tells him to tell an abridged version. Aladdin is mostly saying that Japanese culture is still strange, and the Emperor his drunk remarks are brilliant too. The best thing however, was Genji comparing all of the female characters from his story with anime archetypes like tsundere and yandere, ending with Murasaki as a lolicon xD

Come to think of it, this is the second time the Emperor gets drunk (he also did that in the zadankai of the vol.2) but he wasn't half as drunk that time as he is now xD That the Genie (CV: Takemoto Eiji) also made an appearance was a nice surprise, even though he mostly just feeds the emperor more alcohol.

The seiyuu all make a separate cast comment, making me wonder whether they actually recorded this all separately. If they did they did a really good job on making it sounds natural, at least to me it sounds as if they were all together.

Just like the first yomikatari CD, this is only funny to listen to if you know the original CD (or otherwise you'll miss out on a lot of in-jokes). But just like the first on it is pretty short (only 30min) so if you have heard the first one it is perfect as a snack. On the other hand, you can also argue that that makes it relatively expensive. I really do hope that they will make a third CD like this now that we have 9 princes.


Weekly News Post

Hello again! I've been changing little things around the site. To begin with the link to audiowiki has been removed, because it has been on hiatus for quite a while now, and several new links have been added under the 'drama label' section. I'm still working on the by now impossibly long list of tags, but I have yet to find a proper solution for that one.

Oujisama (warai)
The covers for Oujisama (warai) Gakuen and Oujisama (warai) Variety 2nd Season have been uploaded on the official site. I like the cover for Oujisama (warai) Gakuen a lot, but compared the the 1st Vacation CD, doesn't the cover for 2nd Season look a bit simple?

Bokutachi Otoko no Ko
A new episode in the lives of our three little cross-dressing idols has been announced: ”Bokutachi Otoko no Ko ~Masaka no Scandal~. Not much info about the plot yet, except that as the title implies there will probably be some sort of scandal.


Are you Alice? - How about a nice cup of tea

Are you Alice? - How about a nice cup of tea

Company: IM Label
Based on: Original
Official Site: http://imlabel.jp/alice/

In Are you Alice a male Alice wanders into wonderland and is subsequently involved in 'the game to kill the white rabbit'. Alice his story is told in three drama CDs - Drink me, Check Mate, and Call me- but there are several expansions to the story.

Alice seems to be hosting a tv show in which he tracks what the Hatter does during the day. Of course, the Hatter his time is standing still at 6pm so according to the Hatter it is always time for tea. To make things worse, he forgets whether he had eaten the shortcake in the fridge or not, and then blames Alice for eating it.

This basically is Alice tracking the Hatter his weird habits, and being nearly shot multiple times in the process. It really makes you wonder what kind of things Alice has to go through everyday... xD


Kannou Jikan 6: Kougyoku no Kanzashi to Shiryuu no Ma~

 感応時間6 ~紅玉の簪と紫龍の間~

Company: Hituzigumo
Based on: Original
Released: 2011.11.12
Official Site: http://hituzigumo.com/kannnou/

I keep forgetting that I already listened to this. Dear Hituzigumo, I have listened to every Kannou Jikan until now, please make it stop. This is torture and I'm dying of bloodloss because of nosebleeding.... For those not familiar with it, Kannou Jikan is probably the most perverse drama/situation CD series on the market there is. For now at least. I fear for the future.

Plotwise, the setting this time is that you are the mistress of 'a certain kanmi dokoro'. (a kanmidokoro is like a cafe for japanese sweets, this is also probably a shout out to the first CD in the series). You are getting married soon, and tonight one of your former pupils (CV: Hiyama Nobuyuki) is visiting you before that happens.

So far so good. And then it turns out you were teaching him more than the inns and outs of sweets. Knowing that had feelings for you, you apparently made out numerous times although you never loved him. And now that you are getting married he is determined to give you one last passionate night so that you will never forget him.

This summary is embarrassing to write.

So yeah. All pretence is gone here. He actually declares that he is going to 'leave his mark' on your body so that you won't forget him. Not to mention that it is explicitly stated that you already had a sexual relationship. Not that we were expecting anything less ever since the last few entries to the series.

Hiyama-san is voice is really sexy. He is clearly turned on more than you are right from the beginning. And the sounds that they use for hypnosis this time is really effective. It might be because I was listening to this in the middle of the night and was sleepy, but I lost all sense of time, feeling like I had been listening to this for ages when it ended. I don't know whether that is a good thing or not, but what was certain is that I felt more comfortable than last time. Although that might simply be that my senses have gone dull when it comes to this series.

The free-talk was kind of cute. Hiyama-san is obviously slightly uncomfortable with the contents, saying that it was 'rather embarrassing'. But his talk about how the Dummy Head Mic looks like 'an old geezer' but that after a while he came to see it as a partner is cute.

To me this is still one of the greatest "should not want" series there is. The perverted talk puts me off but it sounds. so. sexy it could make me faint. I will cling to my aversion for this series as my last hope for the fact that my mind isn't permanently in the gutter and that I am still a wholesome person. That said, if you liked the rest of the series you should probably listen to it.

Other than that, is this series rated R-18/Cero-Z/Adult only yet? If not, I wonder how you get all of this past the radar....


Shuukan Soine CD Vol.8 - Ryo

週刊添い寝CDシリーズ vol.8 涼

Company: Black Butterfly
Based on: Original
Released: 2011.11.25
Official Site: http://www.blackbutterfly-cd.com/short/

Shuukan Soine CD series is a series in which your boyfriend cuddles next to you and talks with you until you fall asleep. Each CD features a different type of character, and lets you experience a different type of boyfriend.

This time your boyfriend is Ryo (CV: Okamoto Nobuhiko), who is 24 and works as a freelance web programmer. He is described as "timid but loves you with whole his heart". The booklet also states that he is "rather introvert but also very sensitive to changes in the feelings/mood of others".

The story starts with Ryo apologising for taking so long to get here. Apparently you made a mistake at your work and it has really gotten you down, so you called him. He was still working, but came as soon as you called.Judging by the blanket sounds, you were sulking in bed when he arrived. Ryo tries to cheer you up a little, and I guarantee that he will be successful. He really is incredibly cute.

After he has managed to cheer you up you can't sleep, so he tells you a story about a dolphin and the stars that he once read in a picture book. There is one dolphin that cannot jump, and afraid that he will be teased by the others he secretly practices at night. However he still doesn't manage to jump, and just as he is about to give up, one of the stars speaks to him saying that he is trying so hard and that he shouldn't give up. If he works so hard he will manage to jump one day. And so the dolphin falls in love with the star and jumps in order to be closer to it.

Ryo has two tracks in which he talks to you when you are already asleep. The first one is the usual 'saying sweet things he would never say when you are awake' kind of track, while the actual track for when you have fallen asleep has him answering a work related phone call. It turns out that while he said that he came because he wanted to see you, he actually has a deadline soon but still came. Awww.

No matter how you look at it, Ryo is just really really cute. He has the usual 'I want to be cool and manly' sort of complex, but when you tease him he eventually says he fine with being cute as long as that means he can be with you. The setting is that you are a little older, and I thought the scene where he says that he likes the you who acted a little childish and wanted to be spoiled to day a lot as well really cute (how often have I used the word cute by now? xD)

The cast comment is a lot of fun. Okamoto-san sounds he had a lot of fun doing the recording. He also plays around with the mic a little, eventually saying that his favourite position was when he talks close to your ear. It may just be that Okamoto-san only sounds a bit more genki as himself, or that he has the same age as Ryo (24, like he mentions) but he essentially sounds like he actually could be Ryo.

Ryo is a really sweet and cute character. Not like your shota cute, but I-want-to-hug-you-and-never-let-go cute. The cover illustration looks a bit ore mature than he actually acts. Ryo completely disqualifies as cool and sexy boyfriend, but to be honest he is just so cute I can't help but to forgive him. He is just like a puppy.


Meisaku Bungaku (warai) Yabu no Naka

I wrote a review for this ages ago but for some reason I didn't post it? Anyway, as per request:


Company:  Frontierworks
Based on: Literature
Released: 2009.08.26
Official Site: http://www.fwinc.co.jp/www/

A version of the famous literary work 'Yabu no Naka' in which all of the characters are male. Despite the title, there is not much 'warai' about this story. It is  very serious, and I actually have a lot of respect for how this adaption of  Yabu no Naka was made, if you see to which extent it mirrors the original.

The opening sounds far to sexy xD Other than that it is a very serious story. The same story is told from the perspective of three people, however their versions differ immensely from each other. In the original the story a man who is traveling with his wife is attacked and murdered. Three witnesses tell a completely different story of what happened.

In this version Tamaru Joutarou goes on a trip to Kamakura and saves a boy who is drowning in the sea. Afterwards the boy introduces himself as Kanazawa Masago. Only after saving him Joutarou notices how pretty he is. Soon afterwards Masago his older brother, Takehiro, comes running as well. However Takehiro seems strangely suspicious. To makes things worse, Masago whispers "you are a terrible person" when they leave.

Masago and Takehiro are brothers but don't have the same father. Which resulted in a rather twisted relationship. However the nature of this relationship also varies with each version. Likewise, It is always Takehiro who gets killed but the motive and killer differ. The dialogue is also partly the same, partly different in each version. Personally I like the third version best.

Track 7, 8 and 9 are parody trailers for different versions of the story; Renai game, re-imagined novel, and a movie. Especially the weird English in the movie trailer is hilarious, but the second one is also brilliantly over the top.

Track 10 is the cast comment, in which all three seiyuu seem to be somewhat tired and no longer able to be serious. Yasumoto-san also comments on the fact that the story parallels the original to a large extent. I especially like the comment on how if this were a 2hr tv drama a new character would appear in the last 15 minutes claiming to have done it all xD

Whether you know the original story or not, this is a very good drama. I'd almost say whether you like BL or not this is a drama worth listening. Yes, technically this could be considered BL, but expect no karami, this is a drama filled and dark story.

However if you compare the original version and this one you can see how well this version is constructed. Most, if not all, of the characters completely parallel the original.


Karekoe ~Dousei-chuu no Kare~

カレコエ ~同棲中の彼~

Company: Fluffy Bunny
Based on: Original
Released: 2010.06.10
Translation: Sweet Translations

Karekoe is a CD where your boyfriend gives you a phone call, so the entire CD is essentially one phone call. This first CD has Ono Daisuke as your boyfriend. You've been living together for 3months now, and he is just on his way home from the train station.

He calls you when he arrives at the station, and visits a conbini and book store while on the way home while he talks with you. It's mostly just like you imagine a conversation like that to be (now-here-doing-this kind of conversation) but towards the end he turns a bit more serious, about how there are things you don't say any more when you live together. About 5seconds before he arrives the battery dies though xD

Like I said, most of the conversation is pretty normal and seems natural to me. Of course there are some cute moments, like how he notices there is a new flavour of the chocolate you always eat and buys it for you, or promises to give up smoking for you. I personally loved the moment where he drops the phone while in the book store, because you ask him to buy a wedding magazine for you.

The serious bit near the end was less to my liking, but that is mostly because I think that it is going to be reaaalllly awkward if you get home within minutes of having a conversation like that on the phone.

There are two versions on the CD: a mobile version, where it really sounds as if he is on the phone, and a normal version, where there is also bgm instead of only background noise. Finally there is also a short track called 'private time' in which you talk a bit while already in bed. The two different versions give a slightly different feel, you can really tell what the effect of the bgm is, which in kind of interesting.

Considering that this CD uses the exact same recording twice, it is pretty short (15min x2). It is very cute though, and really does sort of feel like someone is talking to you through the phone (I've made enough calls just like this to now what it sounds like xD except that, I didn't have the dokidoki sweet confessions at the end). And OnoD is acting like the ideal boyfriend as always, so if you want a phone call from mister perfect this is your chance ;)


KIKKA Mystery Reviews

A friend of mine recently reviewed two drama CD's by Momo & Grapes / Kikka, and I thought it might be interesting to post a link to them.

Swiss Dokei no Nazo
46 Banme no Misshitsu

Keep in mind that these are reviews done by a fan of detective fiction, as opposed to my drama CD addicted self. So these are reviews done from an entirely different angle. But personally I liked reading them, so I thought I would share (^-^)

Oujisama (warai) Yomikatari CD Vol.1

王子様(笑)シリーズ 読み語りCD ~君に捧ぐ物語~ 第1集

Company: Frontierworks
Based on: Fairy tales
Released: 2010.09.08
Official Site: http://www.fwinc.co.jp/princewww/

The original 2 entries to the Oujisama (warai) series told re-imagined version of a few well known fairytales. The yomikatari CDs are a sort of spin-off CDs in which the princes from the main series read their own fairytale to you, but not without making side remarks.

Just to be clear, I use the names 'Cinderella' 'Snow White' and 'Rapunzel' for each of the princes just like in the CD.

This first CD has the princes from the first CD in the main series reading their own story, while the other two make comments. Just to refresh your memory, the first CD featured Cinderella (CV: Suzumura Kenichi), Snow White (CV: Nakai Kazuya) and Rapunzel (CV: Ishida Akira).

They've kept the exact same order as before, meaning Cinderella is first in line. And he tries to simplify things with "A long time ago there was a girl named Cinderella, and then some bad stepsisters, some magic, and glass shoes and a lot of other stuff happened and she married the prince" xD Unfortunately for him Snow White forces him to properly read the story, so he reluctantly does so.

Next is Snow White, who reads his story. As things progresses the others keep making comments about the princess being a monster, which Snow White keep ignoring. In the end he himself can't finish the end of the story because he is reminded of a certain event though xD (the end of the story referring to the second half of the story, the original story doesn't end when the prince and princess marry).

Rapunzel is last, and by that time Cinderella and Snow White have started on drinks and snacks because they are relieved now their own turn has ended. Despite that Rapunzel actually does a pretty good job at reading the story. The most brilliant thing is how Cinderella and Snow White seem to be surprised at the lack of magic in the story xD

Even though they are 'supposed' to be reading the original story, the constant remarks makes this a lot of fun to listen to again. They are also constantly breaking down the fourth wall again, like how they are commenting on the previous CDs in the beginning and make references to the 3rd volume (which wasn't released yet at that point). The entire CD is pretty short, just under 30min in fact, but I don't think that it should have been much longer, this was just good.

Nakai-san his cast comment is pretty hilarious. He is always doing his recordings for the series alone, so in the middle of lamenting this and hoping that if the series continues long enough he'll get a chance to do the recording together with the rest he runs out of time and suddenly ends the comment xD

You need to have heard the first CD to enjoy this, otherwise the personalities of the three princes make no sense. Not to mention all of the references to the CD make no sense either. At under 30min this is nice snack material, and while not being nearly as funny as the main series it is still a good CD.


Weekly News Post

Little Princess Sara
The cast for Momo&Grapes their next Men's Only drama has been announced: Serah (Okamoto Nobuhiko), Ermengard (Suganuma Hisayoshi), Becky (Takeuchi Ken), Ravinia(?)(Kishio Daisuke), Miss Minchin (Miki Shinichirou), Ram Dass (Yoshino Hiroyuki)

The first rough sketches for Nanao Kippei (CV: Kaji Yuuki) have been released, finally giving us an idea on how he looks. Personality wise Kippei is a popular model who is always up to date with the latest fashion and everything trendy - except that his just his image and behind the facade he is actually an old-fashioned person who loves old movies and tv drama's.

Yandere Heaven 5
And the official site is up!! No new info yet (animate and stellaworth leaked all of it xD) but some nice visuals. And now the waiting for the voice samples starts :3 Samples are up (thanks Tensionrush for the tip!)

The site also confirms that there are indeed two tokuten drama CD's: buy Yandere Heaven 5 at animate and you will get 'the three of us after that ~Ran side~ and buy it at Stellaworth to get 'the three of us after that ~Wakasa side~. Both CD's tell what happens when you choose neither of them in the main scenario and continue to live together from the viewpoint from one of the two brothers.


A very drama Christmas

I realized when Halloween creeped by that I had missed a chance to publish some reviews in theme (well, I did review Halloween+Town). So now that Christmas is coming closer I need your inspiration! I'm looking for Christmas themed drama CD to review. If you know any, or know any drama CDs in which Christmas plays a (relatively) large role, or is somehow related to Christmas, please let me know and I'll see whether I can find them fast enough to review them in the week for Christmas :D

Here is a small list of what I found so far:

D.Gray Man - Kuro no Kyoudan Christmas Party
Fushigi Koubou Vol.6: Christmas no Dekigoto
Hanayaka ka na, Waga Ichizoku Drama CD
Persona -trinity soul- The Sound of Christmas
Rozen Maiden Traumend-Christmas  Drama CD
Will'o'Wisp: Christmas no Kiseki (?)

Whether these are actualy suited for a christmas review, haha I don't know. So if you know anything, or maybe even just something overtly winter themed, let me know!! :D

Key Releases

Hiiiiii! We've got a new feature this month! Starting this month I'll put up a list with key releases on the first of the month. Keep in mind that these are not all the releases for this month (because I am bound to miss some -maybe even many- things) but important, interesting, and major releases are definitely there!!

2011.12.02: Shuukan Soine vol.9: Takahiro
2011.12.02 Marukawakun no nekotachi vol.2: Natsu Cinema
2011.12.09 Sengoku Paradise vol.1 ~Dashi no Kime Te~
2011.12.09: Shuukan Soine vol.10: Yuusei
2011.12.14: Amemakura vol.1: Subaru
2011.12.14: Hakuouki: Kanou Emaki
2011.12.14: Zero no Kiseki vol.1
2011.12.14: Zero no Kiseki ~Youkou no Nuumori ni dakarete~
2011.12.16: Shuukan Soine vol.11: Touma
2011.12.21: Brothers Conflict Character CD vol.3
2011.12.21: Diabolik Lovers Do-S Kyuuketsuki CD vol.1: Ayato
2011.12.21: Hanayaka kana, Waga Ichiya: ~Miyanomori Trouble~
2011.12.21: Hells Kitchen
2011.12.21: Storm Lover: Koi no Study Session
2011.12.21: Uta☆Puri Debut Unit CD Reiji & Otoya & Tokiya
2011.12.21: VitaminX Detective B6 Vol.1
2011.12.21: Voice Color Series vol.11: Shoukei
2011.12.24: Kareshi Igai 2 ~Joushi to no ayamachi~
2011.12.22: Shuukan Soine vol.12: Satoshi
2011.12.28: Honeymoon vol.2: Kousaka Otoya
2011.12.29: Chou-Sekkingata♥Sasayaki Chakumitsu CD
2011.12.29: Full Score 2nd Season vol.3
2011.12.29: Yandere Heaven vol.5: Karei naru Saionjike Hen

I can't wait for the rest of the Shuukan Soine CDs (especially the last one!!) and of course Yandere Heaven!! (Yandere Sakurai, here I come) (>w<). Amemakura I'm also very interested in, as well as Honeymoon, but that one will have to wait until I've listened to the first. Diabolik Lovers and Sasayaki Chakumitsu CD also seem very interesting, but I'm running into budgetary problems here.

What are your favourites? Did I miss something? Getting any of these for Christmas? :)


Are you Alice? - Alice the Gibberish! 2

Are you Alice? - Alice the Gibberish! 2

Company: IM Label
Based on: Original
Released: 2009.05.20
Official Site: http://imlabel.jp/alice/

In Are you Alice a male Alice wanders into wonderland and is subsequently involved in 'the game to kill the white rabbit'. Alice his story is told in three drama CDs - Drink me, Check Mate, and Call me- but there are several expansions to the story. This is a collection of CMs with Alice and the Hatter talking complete nonsense in between.

This time the Mad Hatter opens the skits with incredible tension (and referencing Star Wars just like they did in the first Alice the Gibberish). Just like the first time, this is a collection of CMs, and Alice and the Hatter commenting on them in between.

A large part of the CMs are in the shape of the fictional radio show "Alice no Heya". Hearing all of them together is kind of fun, especially because they get more and more random each time.

This time the CMs go all the way up to the unbirthday scraps and character singles, they don't realy mention any of the content, but just to be on the safe side it might be better if you've listened to all of them before listening to this.

To be short, this is just more of the same, but that definitely isn't a bad thing here. Randomness and hilarity are guaranteed again so go and listen if you know the series.


Shuukan Soine CD Vol.7 - Sei

週刊添い寝CDシリーズ vol.07 誠

Company: Back Butterfly
Based on: Original
Released: 2011.11.18
Official Site: http://www.blackbutterfly-cd.com/short/

Shuukan Soine is a CD in which your boyfriend cuddles next to you and talks with you until you fall asleep. Vol.7 ~ 12 will be a new batch of weekly releases, and this one starts it off.

Your boyfriend this time is Sei (CV: Kuroda Takaya), the 35 year old owner of a bar. As you can see by the age (and probably also guessed by the cover) Sei is a bit older than most of the boyfriends before this.

The CD starts when Sei just got home late from work, and you are still awake. Sei notices there is something different about you, but you don't want to say what. Because you can't fall asleep he comes with the idea to read you a story, and you get up to grab a picture book that you just so happened to have. The story is about a prince who has lost the ability to love someone.

Afterwards the conversation returns to what was bothering before; that Sei never puts his feelings into words. You get up to get another book you have: "sweet things you want your boyfriend to say to you". Surprisingly though, Sei agrees to read a few of the lines from the book, leading to a pure overkill in sweet lines.

Sei is obviously a bit older than previous boyfriends. You've also been together for quite some years now, which shows in his attitude. I find him strangely cute though. He usually has the situation in hand, but when you pout he is suddenly willing to do all kinds of things for you. I liked the way he feels and acts comfortable around you.

The scene where he reads all those sweet lines is my absolute favourite. When he starts they are noticeably just read aloud from the book, but the more he progresses the more the words become his own. It also makes me giggly, that many sweet lines at once would make everyone shy. But his reading of the picture book is very very good as well, the way he uses his voice there, I simply melt.

There is just one thing I don't like about Sei: He smokes. While sitting beside me on the bed. Noooooo, I hate the smell of cigarettes...

The free talk is hilarious. It begins with Kuroda-san saying that this was his first time working with the Dummy Head mic and that the mic really is just a head "which means there is [no body and thus] no butt, which he loves so much" xD And after a while the story completely shifts to him talking about Saizeriya (サイゼリヤ, a restaurant chain), and one of the dishes on their menu (more specifically, I think he is talking about their mixed grill). And every time he mentions the name of the restaurant or the name of the dish they have to censor him xD 

I think this was a great way to start this new batch of Shuukan Soine CDs. Sei is easily likeable and the way he handles the 'not putting his love into words' issue is really sweet. I wish he would quit smoking though (god, that makes it sound like I'm talking about an actual person). 

Saizeriya... I want to go and eat there again. Or any famires for that matter...


Hoka Hoka Tsundere Onsen


Company: Fluffy Bunny
Based on: Original
Released: 2011.08.25

In Hoka Hoka Tsundere Onsen your boyfriend takes you on a midweek trip to an onsen. From the journey in the train to arriving at the ryokan, to buying souvenirs, and the actual onsen visit, everything is there. And of course, as the title implies your boyfriend is a tsundere.

The CD starts while you are in the train. Your boyfriend (CV: Takahashi Hiroki) got a chance to take a few days off so the two of you go on a midweek onsen trip. He manages to use the tsundere catchphrase 'kanchigai shinaide yo' (don't misunderstand me/ don't get me wrong) within one minute. Bonus points for that one xD

Each track of the CD depicts a different scene in our trip; arriving at the hotel, sight seeing, buying souvenirs, dinner, the onsen, and when you go to bed, to finally the day after when you ride the train back home. Each scene by itself is pretty short, but surprisingly it doesn't feel that way and the overall pace is very good.

Even though the title implies that your boyfriend is a tsundere, I don't think it is that obvious. In the beginning he is a bit tsun, and towards the end more dere (I guess they intended it that way) but to what extend he really is a tsundere, I'm not sure. But maybe that is also because the things that he feels embarrassed about are things I'd be embarrassed about myself as well. Maybe someone who is more of an tsundere expert can enlighten me about this.

There were two tracks that made me laugh. The first one is the 'bathing track'. Besides the fact that he is obviously embarrassed to get undressed in front of you. Something is going 'pyon'. I have no idea what but my imagination got the better of me. And the bedtime track. That one sentence... hahahaha (>///<). Although all I thought is "you'd better be gentle indeed".

I have only one minor issue with this CD, and that is that I don't think the cover and Takahashi-san his voice match. Don't get me wrong, he is a really sweet boyfriend and I like his voice, but I don't think it matches the character on the cover.

This is a mostly sweet CD, only towards the end it gets a bit more... eroi. To what extend it really is tsundere I'm not sure, but it was nice to listen to. I hope they'll make more vacation trip CDs like this.


Romeo and Juliet


Company: Momo&Grapes
Based on: Romeo and Julliet
Released: 2010.03.25

Like the title implies, this is Romeo and Juliet. The catch here is that it is part of Momo&Grapes their Men's Only series, meaning that all characters are voiced by male seiyuu.

In all honesty, the fact that it is done by Momo&Grapes and that it is part of the Men's Only series is the only reason I listened to this. I have no love for the story of Romeo and Juliet.

*cough* back to reviewing. The story is completely faithful to the original. Romeo (CV: Ishida Akira) sneaks into the Capulet masked ball together with Benvolio (CV: Naruse Makoto) and Mercutio (CV: Suganuma Hisayoshi) where he meets Juliet (CV: Kamiya Horoshi) who kisses Romeo in order to chase away her suitor count Paris (CV: Masuda Takayuki) and Romeo and Juliet fall in love. With the help of Juliet her wetnurse (CV: Kusonoki Taiten) and the friar Laurence (CV: Takemoto Eiji) they get married. However Tybalt (CV: Ishikawa Hideo) got hold of the news that Romeo sneaked into the Capulet ball and wants to duel Romeo, who doesn't want to, Mecutio gets killed in the end, Romeo is exiled, meanwhile Juliet is engaged to Paris against her will, and in order to escape the marriage feigns her death, and so we reach the well known tragic end of this story.

I am sorry for my sloppy summary of this classic piece of literature.

This is a bit hard to review, because I don't like the Romeo and Juliet story in general so I'll try to focus on other things instead. Like or don't like though, Kamiya his Juliet was very cute. It makes you want to hug him. I had more problems with Ishida his Romeo, but I finally settled on the fact that a voice actor that I don't particular like voiced a role that I dislike, so that it all matches. (I am sorry, Ishida-san is brilliant at times, but I'm not very fond of his voice). Interestingly enough, Kamiya-san apparently thought of Ishida-san as the ideal Romeo (He says so in the tokuten CD).

Actually, I personally found the cast talk and tokuten talk the most interesting tracks on this CD xD Almost everyone has an interesting comment (Ishikawa Hideo his final remark was the best xD). The rest of the cast going "kawaii! kawaii!" while Kamiya-san was talking, or "Romeo-samaaaa!" when Ishida-san starts talking was just too cute. In the tokuten talk CD Kamiya-san mostly says how worried and nervous he was about his role as Juliet, while Ishida-san just goes "I wasn't worried at all [about my own part]" xD

Something interesting that I already though of and that was also mentioned in the cast talk, was that in the time on Shakespeare plays were performed with only male actors. So to some extend this drama CD is actually really close to the original play.

This is, I think, actually a good drama CD. I just don't like the story and I can't get over that no matter what. I'm sorry. But if you like the Men's Only series it is worth a listen, and if you like the Romeo and Juliet story it is probably a must.


Oujisama (warai) series: Oujisama to Ningyo-hime no Koi

王子様 (笑)シリーズ  ドラマCD 第5巻 ~王子様と人魚の恋~

Company: Frontier Works
Based on: The Little Mermaid
Released: 2011.10.26
Official Site: http://www.fwinc.co.jp/princewww

The Oujisama (warai) series re-imagines various well known fairytales. This time 'the Little Mermaid' is completely changed. The focus is on the prince instead of the princess though, and as the 'warai' (laughter) in the title implies the story gains a lot of humour.

Several character from previous entries to the series make their appearance here as well: Cinderella her prince (CV: Suzumura Kenichi), Snow White her Prince (CV: Nakai Kazuya), and Hikaru Genji (CV: Yoshino Hiroyuki) are visiting Frederick (the main character this time; CV: Morikawa Toshiyuki) because he is scheduled to marry the next day. On the way there Genji saves/picks up an unknown girl and her servant (CV: Takemoto Eiji) who wants to stop the marriage and marry the prince instead.

Frederick first complains about his life not being dramatic enough because his marriage is political, and that he wants to have a fateful encounter with someone so that he can fall in love and blow of the marriage. But when Genji brings in the unknown girl (who is obviously the little mermaid, they even named her 'Little') he claims he doesn't remember her and is not interested in marrying her at all.

Most of the CD is Frederick arguing with the servant (who speaks instead of 'princess Little') and the other three just generally make comments on the conversation and argue among themselves. But with everyone their weird personalities (Cinderella loves weapons a bit too much, Genji is an incredible player) that is exactly what makes this CD so hilarious.

Speaking of that, there is just too much hilarity in this CD. Cinderella and Snow White discovering that they are relatives, Genji constantly trying to win princess Little for himself, Frederick his obsession with sweets, the fact that Little is actually an incredible stalker, the references to earlier entries to the series xD Not to mention Cinderella and Snow White their constant tsukkomi and occasional breaking of the fourth wall alone is already hilarious. (they actually mention that this is a drama series a couple of time xD)

What I truly loved was how they managed to give the story a serious turn despite the fact that it is a complete parody. Of course, right after you feel the effect of the serious turn they go completely hilarious again xD

After the main story there is a zadankai as always. The fourth wall is completely torn down here xD Cinderella and Snow White explain the idea behind the series to Frederick and decide on a nickname for him as well (and thus, he is called 'Ningyo' (Mermaid) afterwards). Frederick also has a passionate rant against blood-type horoscopes (which is, given the popularity of those in Japan, rather hilarious)

I only realized after listening to this how much the style of these CDs has changed. The first two entries had sepparate stories for each prince, which were a sort of mix between  reading the story to you and acting out part of it. From vol.3 on the cast from the first two entries appears along side of a new character allowing for lots of references and hilarious conversations between the characters. (This, btw, also places all of the fairytales in one world, as if each one takes place in a different country located on one large fairytale continent). Also, Frederick/Mermaid is the 9th character already... (o.O) It feels like the cast from the first two CDs is more popular though (especially Snow White and Genji)

You're missing out on a lot if you don't know at least the first two CDs of the rest of the series (3 and 4 aren't referenced that much) but if you do know those then you should definitely listen to it. This is my favourite entry to the series so far, and one of my absolute favourite drama CDs of all time. Also, I think the cover art is gorgeous.


Weekly News Post

Diabolik Lovers
A new drama CD series has arrived. Diabolik Lovers Kyuuketsuki Do-S CD is a series all about sadistic vampires who are out for your blood (and probably also fall in love with you). This also more of a multimedia project, as the CDs will be accompanied by a NicoNico Live broadcast show and a game by otomate.

Because your father has to go out of the country for his work for a while you somehow end up living in with 6 brothers that visit the same high school as you do. The 6 of them are so pretty the entire town talks about them, but they also have incredibly bad personalities and to top it all they turn out to be vampires!

From left too right we have the oldest son Shuu (CV: Toriumi Kousuke), who is described as "a apathetic music loving aristocrat". The second son Reiji (CV: Konishi Katsuyuki), who talks polite but insulting. The triplets Ayato (CV: Midorikawa Hikaru), Kanato (CV: Kaji Yuuki) and Raito (CV: Hirakawa Daisuke). And the rather violent Subaru (CV: Kondo Takeshi). Click here to see a larger version.

The release order is a bit of a mystery to me, but the first CD to be released is the one for Ayato, on 2011.12.21, and next up are Subaru (2012.01.25), Kanato (2012.02.22), Raito (2012.03.21), Reiji (2012.04.25) and finally Shuu (2012.05.23). A tokuten for those who buy all 6 CD's will also be published, but they have yet to announce what it will be.

Tap Trap Love
This was announced at 5pb their live event last week. Not much info about it yet, except that the series has 'Tap Dancing' as it's theme and that is uses the dummy head mic, and a list of seiyuu: Maeno Tomoaki, Kamiya Hiroshi, Nakai Kazuya, Itou Kentarou, Fujiwara Yuuki, Shimazaki Nobunaga, and Ishida Akira,

I'm curious about this, I don't know how one combines dancing and a drama CD but I've seen stranger things, and the dummy head mic is always love. Moreover, I'm kind of happy to see two unfamiliar names. Fujiwara Yuuki and Shimazaki Nobunaga are two names I'm unfamiliar with, and I'm curious about them. The series is planned for February 2012.