October 29, 2022

Hills of Silver Ruins (4/14)

October 22, 2022

Hills of Silver Ruins (4/13)

I've posted chapter 13 (book 4) of Hills of Silver Ruins, a Pitch Black Moon.

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October 19, 2022

Netflix with ads

Netflix has announced that its new ad-supported tier will launch on November 3, 2022.

The new service promises an "average of 4 to 5 minutes of ads per hour" at up to 720p (also for the Basic plan). This is a significant improvement over the 480p resolution that came with the Basic plan when I first joined.

It'll be interesting to see how well the new service compares to Tubi. Right now, Tubi has the best ad engine in the business. The viewing experience compares well with OTA channels like ION and MeTV. Likewise, Tubi streams at up to 720p.

Tubi's one big failing is discovery. While it does divide titles into genre categories like "Anime" and "Foreign Language TV," aside from a general keyword search, it lacks specialized filter functions like language and can't sort alphabetically.

Tubi has an impressive amount of Japanese language content in the Foreign Language categories, but it's not easy to track down. Unlike K-drama, there isn't a J-drama collection. Try keyword searches for "Japan" and "Japanese" instead.

Of course, Tubi is free while the "Basic with Ads" plan will cost $6.99/month (I do expect fewer ads per hour). I dropped Netflix last March when it raised the price of its Standard plan to $15.49. This price point is far more tolerable.

Netflix is rolling out the service worldwide. Variety lists the prices for the major international markets at the bottom of this article.

Related posts

Tubi (update 4)
Netflix with ads (content)
Netflix with ads (first impressions)

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October 15, 2022

Hills of Silver Ruins (4/12)

I'm pretty sure what I ended up translating as "mulberry" is a mostly made-up word. It's the closest approximation I could find for meikoku (迷穀).

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October 08, 2022

Hills of Silver Ruins (4/11)

Much blood and gore in this chapter, along with weapons and military equipment.

Barding (or to bard) is body armor for war horses. A boatman's staff (梢子棍) is a longer version of what is commonly known as nunchaku. A meteor hammer (流星錘) is an ancient Chinese weapon that consists of weighted objects connected by a rope or chain. Here it is used it like a tethered bolas.

The halberd (斧) consists of an axe blade topped with a spike mounted on a long shaft. The short-handled version resembles a tomahawk.

A podao (朴刀) is a single-edged infantry weapon with the blade of a broadsword but a longer handle.

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October 05, 2022

Tubi (update 4)

The Lupin the Third franchise has expanded significantly of late. Tubi has three dozen or so of the movies, along with Daughter of Lupin, a live-action spin-off series. (Crunchyroll has seasons 1–5. Hidive has seasons 1–6 and The Woman Called Fujiko Mine.)

Crisis: Special Security Guard is an action-oriented police procedural in the NCIS LA style and with all the nihilism of The Blacklist. It co-stars Hidetoshi Nishijima. He had the lead role in Drive My Car, which won an Oscar for Best International Feature Film.

As you can see from his IMDB entry, one of the upsides of Japan's tightly self-contained film industry is that an A-list actor like Nishijima will show up in everything from art house productions, to television series, to revivals of classic tokusatsu flicks. Also on Tubi, he plays an ex-cop in Creepy and a personal bodyguard in 99 Days With the Superstar.

What's Hot in Japan and See It, Eat It, Experience It are low-budget travelogues that often manage to be both entertaining and educational.

Related posts

Tubi (update 1)
Tubi (update 2)
Tubi (update 3)

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October 01, 2022

Hills of Silver Ruins (4/10)

Kokuu or guyu (穀雨) is the sixth solar term in the traditional Chinese lunisolar calendar and begins around April 20 in the modern calendar.

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