Some parting words from Yakuza movie icon Takakura Ken on yakuza films, his favourite movies, and acting

昭和残侠伝 破れ傘(プレビュー)

But I think that the reason the general public identified with the roles I played, was that they were struck by my stance as a man who unrelentingly stands up to absurd injustices. It wasn’t just that I was just going off to a sword fight, but that my character was willing to sacrifice himself in order to protect the people important to him. JSRC: Mr. Takakura, you have been called the Clint Eastwood of Japan, what do you think of that?
Ken Takakura: It’s what someone else thinks, so I have no thoughts on the matter. 

The Ides Of October: Japan’s nuclear reprocessing “dream” is the world’s nightmare

The Rokkasho Nuclear Fuel Cycle PR Center can explain to you why nuclear spent fuel is so hand to have.

The IAEA considers 8kg is enough to make a nuclear weapon. In other words, if the 1% not accounted for (at Rokkasho Spent Nuclear Fuel Reprocessing Plant) was actually stolen, it would be enough material to produce the equivalent of 10 nuclear weapons in a year.

And justice after all? Prosecutor Review Board Say “Charge TEPCO Execs with criminal negligence”

TEPCO executives might possibly be prosecuted for criminal negligence resulting in death and injury over the 3/11 triple nuclear meltdown in Fukushima. But will justice prevail? The odds are as good as there never being another nuclear accident in Japan. Ahem.

However, if the Tokyo Prosecutorial Board again rules that prosecution of the TEPCO executives is warranted then a team of lawyers will be chosen to play the role of the prosecutors and the accused will be charged. An independent government investigatory board concluded in 2013 that the nuclear accident could have been prevented and that TEPCO management was criminally negligent.

Stalking in Japan: Another needless death

Stalking Comic Book _Page_3

(This was originally posted on February 18th, 2014. A day later, a woman in Gunma Prefecture was most probably shot to death by her stalker)  February 21st, 2014 . Updated again on February 22nd, 2014.  Stalking in Japan is a serious problem and the laws can’t seem to catch up with it. On the 19th […]

Underwear designer by day, Underworld yakuza boss by night: The Quiet Don

Underwear designer by day, yakuza by night. The Quiet Don

Nitta Tatsuo’s Shizukanaru Don (静かなるドン), translated into English as The Quiet Don, began publication in November 1988 in the men’s manga magazine Shukan Manga Sunday (Weekly Manga Sunday) and ran until the January 2013 issue when it concluded with a 50 page chapter. Lingerie designer by day, yakuza by night. It’s the ultimate double-life.

DJ Police, Save Me Mama Fraud, Big Data: The Words of 2013 Japan

DJ Police

母さん助けて詐欺 — Kāsan tasukete sagi. “Mom, I need help!” frauds are the latest version of scams to target mainly elderly Japanese people. The perpetrator calls the victim claiming to be her child, asking for an urgent transfer of funds to pay for a traffic accident or other emergency.

Book Review: Tokyo Underworld–a classic on the dark side of Japan

Screen Shot 2013-06-20 at 23.15.47

There are very few gaijin (foreigners) who know what happens on the dark side of the rising sun like Robert Whiting. Whiting is an American author and journalist living in Japan, one of the rare ones who has written great books published in both English and Japanese language after he first set foot in Japan […]

Reconstructing 3/11: Sometimes The Yakuza Live Up To Their Ideals 

Reconstructing 3/11: A collection of several insightful essays on Japan's response to the March 11th, 2011 earthquake and disaster.

There was a brief time after the earthquake when Japan welcomed the yakuza and they welcomed the victims with whatever aid they could provide. As time passes most of them (the yakuza) go back to doing what they really do to make a living: blackmailing, extorting, threatening and defrauding the general populace of their money and engaging in whatever crime they can get away with.

In Japan, Tattoos Are Not Just For Yakuza Anymore

John was tattooed by Horiyoshi III for several years

It is difficult to say whether the wabori Japanese traditional tattoo (入れ墨) hurts more or less than the electric needle tattoo. Pain is like tickle, it is not a feeling that you can measure. You can measure the weight of a person, for example, but you cannot measure pain. Some people say they are afraid of the electric sound of the needle.

The Best Articles About Japan 2012 (on our blog) :D

Screen Shot 2012-12-26 at 9.15.01

Hello Kitty, yakuza working in the nuclear industry, coffee and cigarettes, 2012 was a year chock full of news. Here are some of our favorite stories we ran in 2012.