Metropolis Issue 872

December 10, 2010
Aries

It’s all “go” for Aries this week. The Sun in your inspirational quarter joins Pallas Athene, making you creative and willing to fight for what you believe. While that’s not new, stakes are heightened during the Aries Moon Tuesday and Wednesday. Mercury, ruling communications, is retrograde through the holidays. What you decide has top priority ...

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Virgo

Being modest is not the same as missing opportunities. If you’re not sure what someone means this week, it’s perfectly acceptable to ask for more information. In fact, it’s practically a requirement, with your ruler, Mercury, retrograde now through the holidays. Do you miss some part of your life that you felt you had to ...

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The Goods

Lego’s fiddlier Japanese cousin, Nanoblocks, fit together with a satisfying snap that’ll give you a rush of childish pleasure. In an inspired (not to mention totally impractical) tie-up, manufacturers Kawada have joined forces with Pentax to let immature photographers create playful bling on the front of their cameras. The 14-megapixel Optio NB1000 comes with a ...

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Capricorn

As Capricorn rules tradition, you’re expected to uphold the status quo. But with Pluto in your Sign, there are unprecedented changes. Working to keep them in check, this week promises to make you a tower of strength. Nurturing goddess Ceres, communicative Mercury and fiery Mars join in to add courage and understanding. Mercury is retrograde. ...

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Taurus

Someone may have plans for you—with more than one agenda. You’ll be fine if you follow your instincts, but remember, Mercury is retrograde now and through the holidays. This means communications can change, especially regarding travel, deadlines and schedules. The Moon enters your Sign on Thursday, when you can feel your way through a tricky ...

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Tarento Watch

Model Yu Yamada has been fending off questions about her errant boyfriend, Shun Oguri. Gossip rag Friday recently reported that the bad-boy actor had crowned an evening of drinking with a visit to a love hotel with a female companion. The magazine alleged that the pair arrived in Oguri’s agency car, entering the establishment via ...

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Upfront Extra

If you’re clueless about what to do when the Big One hits, then book a spot at the TMG’s upcoming disaster preparedness drill geared toward foreign residents. In addition to earthquake simulations, the event will have experts offering advice about how to escape from a vehicle or a smoke-filled house. Participants can practice handling emergency ...

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Cancer

While you are able to open new doors this week, an important development may occur. Mercury, Pluto and Mars are in your sector of partnerships, both domestic and business. Changes are afoot, though this time of transition isn’t fully complete. In fact, it has just begun. Mercury is retrograde through the holidays. Double check communications, ...

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Gemini

With the Sun and Pallas Athene opposite your Sign, there is light, joy and, most importantly, heart in your week. This is huge, because your ruler, Mercury, is retrograde through the holidays. Communications, famous for delays or misunderstandings during this time, are more for the purpose of protecting you and your choices. Taking a second ...

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Libra

Joy for a Libran often comes with an appreciation of art and beauty. Your home can reflect this, so that you soak up what you love most wherever you look. This sets the stage for support that nourishes the soul, during times when the rest of the world forgets how necessary this is. The Moon ...

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The Last Word

One man’s fetish is another lady’s pocket money

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Aquarius

This is a wonderful week to refocus, readjust and sustain. Mercury is retrograde, but you don’t have to be. All your best-kept ideas and goals may be in flux as you negotiate your way past the potholes in your life. Ceres, Mercury, Pluto, the North Node and Mars are in your solar twelfth house. Listen ...

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Upfront Extra

If you’re looking for an al fresco venue to do some Xmas shopping, then head to the second annual German-style Christmas Market at Roppongi Hills. Taking place through Christmas Day, the market features a variety of stalls offering handcrafted decorations, toys, imported sweets and more. When you get tired of the wallet-workout, load up on ...

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Mediabox

The Proper Care and Grooming of Men Regarding “21st Century Boy” (Body & Soul, November 26): I basically think the problem in Japan is the plague of “kawaii.” Guys saw girls getting all this attention and fun for a couple decades of rampant kawaii-ness. So they decided they want in on it too. That has ...

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In Other News

Teen model Emi Takei, actor Ikki Sawamura (13 Assassins), 40-something sexpot Aya Sugimoto and J-league soccer star Yuji Nakazawa were named this year’s winners of the Best Dresser Awards, presented at a ceremony at the Grand Prince Hotel in Akasaka… Top kabuki star Ebizo Ichikawa, who sustained serious facial injuries in a restaurant brawl last ...

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Tech Know

Hands up who knows Rikaichan? Yup, thought so. The browser plugin that pops up furigana readings of kanji and their definitions has long been a favorite with Japanese learners, so it’s fantastic to see the same technique finally hit the iPhone and iPad. The action comes courtesy of developer Long Weekend, which dropped the iPad ...

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Photo of the Day

Water and smoke in Shibuya. By Alfie Goodrich.

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The Small Print

This week's required reading

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Pisces

There are a lot of emotional traps being set for Pisceans these days. You’re known for being endlessly helpful, which could explain why sometimes you just have to get away. Saturday and Sunday, the Moon’s transit through your Sign intensifies your feelings. Stick to what is real for you—not what someone else tries to foist ...

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Upfront Extra

In these straitened economic times, it’s easy to look at people in different lines of work and imagine that life must be better for them. But is the grass really greener on the other side of the fence—or, for that matter, on the underside of society? The December 7 issue of Spa! features a fascinating ...

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Leo

A concentration of planetary energies—Mars, Pluto, Mercury and Ceres—in your solar sixth house keep you busy at work or focusing on health. Fiery Mars has just joined in, bringing stamina into the equation. Pluto undoes things and Ceres knits them back together. Mercury is retrograde, and will be through the holidays. On Tuesday and Wednesday, ...

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Star Struck

Multitalented Maya Murofushi seems to have an endless supply of positive energy

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Scorpio

There’s no point in using the famous Scorpion stinger on yourself if things don’t seem to be working. Add Mercury retrograde to the mix, and you’ll see you’re being given another perspective. Saturn in your solar twelfth house may make you feel held back in some area. With Venus in your Sign, you’re turning heads. ...

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Upfront Extra

Hot on the heels of their record showing in the new Michelin guide, Tokyo restaurants get star billing in the 2010/2011 Miele Guide, an annual publication showcasing Asia’s top eateries. Cracking the Top 20 is L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon in Roppongi, which took ninth spot overall. Two other classic French restaurants—L’Osier in Ginza (www.shiseido.co.jp/losier) and ...

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Upfront Extra

[slideshow id=15 w=450] Scenes from Metropolis’ live music showcase, Saiko vs. Kickstart Your Heart, November 19 at Club Edge in Roppongi. For more photos, see www.metropolis.co.jp/saiko.

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Sagittarius

You may have more options than you’re willing to admit. Something has to give, even if it’s not yet apparent what it will be. The Sun in your Sign brings you an extra dose of optimism as it cruises through your Birthday Zone. Tuesday and Wednesday, you’re likely to fall in love. If you act ...

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Features

It’s the Tokyo neighborhood tipped for greatness. So why does it feel like Nagoya?

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Tech Know

As December dawns, chill and crispy, so too arrive the silly stocking stuffers much beloved of gadget makers like Thanko, whose USB Hot Bento Box Pouch is just the ticket for the geeks back home. Although it’s done the rounds before, the seasonal appeal is strong in this one—grab any food you want to go, ...

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Asia

Borderland China offers a fertile mix of nature and ethnicities

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Bar Reviews

Sip cocktails in the capital’s newest luxury hotel

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Local Flavors

Metropolis dishes out on the season's best nabe

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Restaurant Reviews

Enjoy classy Arabian cooking in Nishi-Azabu

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Agenda

Other bands may be crazier, but Kuruucrew are one of the few acts in the Japanese noise-rock underground who can really make a crowd move. “Battle Disco,” the opening track on new album Grind Mirror Ball, is practically a mission statement in itself, combining brutally repetitive grooves with shards of guitar and heavily processed saxophone. ...

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Agenda

The term nihonga is used to denote modern Japanese painting that’s in opposition to contemporary Western styles. But while nihonga artists were inspired by Japanese traditions, they were also indelibly influenced by the waves of Western art washing over Japan. “Establishing Modern Art in Japan—The Artists of the Nihon Bijutsuin [Japan Art Institute], from Taikan ...

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Agenda

In 1976, shogekijo (small theater) pioneer Tadashi Suzuki ditched Tokyo in favor of a remote mountain village in Toyama Prefecture. The Suzuki Company of Toga, which hews to the acting theories developed by its founder, will be heading back to the capital for a pair of Tokyo premieres this month. SCOT’s quadrilingual version of King ...

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Artifacts

For me, Argentina has always been two parts Diego Maradona to one part invasion of the Falklands, with a twist of Borges’ “magical realism” thrown in. Now I’ll have to remix this neat little cocktail to include the talents on display at “An Intimate roar about sex, corruption and gamble” (sic), an exhibition of three ...

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Agenda

Nostalgic for the cheap synthesizers and sequencers that powered dance music’s early days? Englishman Andy Jenkinson (right), brother of the better-known Squarepusher, cultivates an unseemly affection for the Roland 303s and Amiga computers on which most techno was made before laptops came along. With the recent electro revival, his work under the Ceephax Acid Crew ...

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Music

The virtuoso pianist steps outside his more famous trio

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Agenda

Taiko drum troupe Bonten provide a traditional lead-in to the bonenkai season with a performance in Aoyama that also marks the tenth anniversary of their live debut. Founded in 1999 by Masataka Kobayashi, the group boasts an equal number of male and female performers, giving them a different feel from what is often a very ...

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Clubbing

Indestructible eventually meant irrelevant for the Technics turntable

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Movie Reviews

Woody Allen returns to Manhattan and his angst-ridden roots with this fun farce about happiness and accepting it when it comes. The main character is a 60-ish misanthrope named Boris Yellnikoff, a brilliant nuclear physicist once “almost nominated for a Nobel Prize.” Boris is played by Larry David (creator of Seinfeld and the writer/star of ...

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Movie Reviews

One of the best-known anime franchises to older fans in Japan and around the world, Space Battleship Yamato first appeared as a TV series in 1974 and was followed by a hit film in 1977. Numerous other series and movies followed, including the erroneously titled Final Yamato in 1983. Now we get a big budget, ...

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Movie Reviews

Apparently, the witty and carefree forest-dwelling thief we know and love, who flirted with Maid Marion and amusingly confounded the Nottingham Sheriff, didn’t buckle his swash sufficiently or something for director Ridley Scott. So instead we have this turgid, joyless, big-deal “prequel” to the myth of the main merry man, in which a lowly archer ...

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Movie Reviews

Jeez, Steven, if you insist on continuing to make (and write) movies, even direct-to-video ones, couldn’t you exert the tiniest effort to make a new one? Or use your own voice? This ultra-cheapie throwaway, again filmed in Romania but this time taking place there, is so generic-Seagal that I have no idea what it’s about, ...

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Cinematic Underground

Bunkamura’s Le Cinema (2-24-1 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku; www.bunkamura.co.jp) will screen three films by English filmmaker Ken Loach, December 11-24. Loach is known for dark, social realist films like Sweet Sixteen (2002), about a Scottish teenager hoping to start life afresh as his birthday approaches, and It’s a Free World…(2007; pictured), in which a working class woman ...

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Movie News

The film adaptation of Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood had its Japan premiere at the author’s alma mater of Waseda University late last month. Joining Vietnamese-French director Tran Anh Hung (The Scent of Green Papaya) on the red carpet were stars Kenichi Matsuyama (Death Note; right) and Rinko Kikuchi (Babel; far right), as well as other ...

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