Fan Level: Above-Average
Collectable goods that you have at home such as DVDs, posters or figurines are some typical things that prove you’re a fan. But, how about going one step further and proving your love cosmetically with some nail art?
There are a lot of cool things that Japan does, and nail art is one of them. One craze that has gained popularity in recent years among anime/manga fans and non-fans alike is something called ita-neiru combining the Japanese words for “pain” and “nail.” No, they don’t physically hurt as you might assume. Rather, they’re painfully geeky (and pretty awesome if you ask me) to look at. Think about those decked out Japanese cars with anime inspired design and characters on them (ita-sha), but on your nails! Nail salons in Akihabara, anime and manga central in Tokyo, offer this cool service if you’re not inclined to try it yourself at home.
Below are the creations of some artistic fans from Japan who have shared them on Twitter and Instagram.
The detail that goes into these pieces of art is pretty impressive.
The person behind this must be an artist of sorts his or herself!
Not to mention, a fan of the series.
The resemblance to the referenced image is really accurate.
I wonder how long it takes to paint a whole set.
Fan Level: Expert
The great thing about cosplay is that it allows one to embody and breath life into a fictional character, bringing it into reality, albeit momentarily. This is another way to show off your dedication to a particular character or series.
What differentiates a regular cosplayer from a fan of a series is the attention to detail put into the costume and mannerisms of the character they are dressing up as. Getting these points right really shows how much you know a certain series or character. It's not just about posing, looking pretty in front of the camera or offering fan-service to garner more views - rather it's about how you try to bring the character to life. For example, can they capture the character's facial expressions and gestures?
Here are three cosplayers that do.
LALAax as Uta
The detail of the cosplay (the tattoos and piercings!), as well as the mannerism of Uta is spot-on.
Lily Liu as Juuzou Suzuya
一之濑光 as Ken Kaneki & Momoko as Touka Kirishima
Fan Level: Over 9000?
Speaking of Tokyo Ghoul obsessions and Twitter, there is an unlikely figure who has gained interest in the Japanese Twitter-verse. Meet the eccentric Shojo Oji-san, a gyoza restaurant twitter ambassador and… Tokyo Ghoul fan? His name combines two words that are almost antonyms of each other. Shojo is a Japanese word describing a young girl, while Oji-san is what you’d call your uncle or a middle-aged man.
Shojo Oji-san according to the imaginations of Japanese netizens.
Shojo Oji-san appears to be your regular Joe-slash-anime fan. Although he doesn't have anything fancy to show like a costume or decked out nails, he proves his level of fandom through the pervasive nature and consistency of which Tokyo Ghoul seeps through into his everyday. How so? Well firstly he seems to be the person in charge of tweeting for a Kobe/Osaka gyoza restaurant in Japan called “gyoza senmonten Ichiro” (specialist gyoza shop Ichiro).
An image of the said restaurant. It is apparently a small shop seating 8, and has 2 branches – one in Kobe and one in Osaka.
You would think these tweets would be related to the restaurant, but it seems that tweets with reference to, you guessed it – Tokyo Ghoul, makes up a good portion of the account! This guy was tweeting about Tokyo Ghoul on a regular basis at the time he sprung into spotlight in 2014, and still continues to in 2015.
He’s taken to advertising Tokyo Ghoul and flaunting his love of the series instead of his workplace.
“Hello! This is Shojo Oji-san from Ichiro Gyoza Restaurant who stocked up on a large bag full of Tokyo Ghoul comics and had the paper bag handle break off while going home. I only had 13 volumes in it!”
“And! Today 10/31 volume 2 of the Tokyo Ghoul DVD & Blu-ray goes on sale! This time it comes with a raffle entry for the soundtrack and the 10/30 night event. Ishida Sui and character designer Kazuhiro Miwa drew the Kirishima siblings especially for the product jacket.”
“On next month’s volume 3 cover is… everyone’s lovable gourmet Tsukiyama. I’m really looking forward to the next release. On a long autumn’s night, please check out Ichiro gyoza and Tokyo Ghoul. I’m supporting Tokyo Ghoul with all my might!”
At least he’s realized what he’s been tweeting about…
“Oh, I was thinking about tweeting more gyoza restaurant-like tweets but… #intheendit'sthesameasusual”
Well, he does do some marketing of the restaurant occasionally.
“I just love the skin on the Ichiro gyoza so I just eat it as it is without using any sauce while watching anime. Soft and Chewy ♪ You can have it as a side dish with rice or as a snack.”
In the end, I guess you can’t blame him.
““Here you go… Use twitter as freely as you’d like…” is what I was told, so from now on I’ll be tweeting about my own circumstances as well as Ichiro gyoza while supporting Tokyo Ghoul!”
I wonder what his boss thinks about his love of Tokyo Ghoul taking over the restaurant’s twitter feed. He’s a dedicated fan that’s for sure, and his tweets may just be effective as a marketing tool to gather the restaurant some potential clients!
Ichiro gyoza could possible become the human-world equivalent of Anteiku where Tokyo Ghoul fans can gather and hang out.
Speaking of restaurants, too bad the Tokyo Ghoul themed menu at Akihabara's Pasela Resorts restaurant only ran for a limited time in 2014. Let's hope it makes a return in the future so Tokyo Ghoul fans have a central location to unite once more!
So, ladies and gentlemen from a scale of one to Shojo Oji-san, how much of a Tokyo Ghoul fan would you say you are? Somewhere in-between? Me too. Perhaps add a point or two if you’re still interested in getting your nails done à la Tokyo Ghoul.