Blog’s Best of 2013


So, 2013’s been pretty busy! Lots of events were attended, shows were watched, videos were edited and guest bloggers came to the rescue. There are a lot of people I want to thank; prize providers, guest bloggers, everyone else who helped put content together in some way and, of course, the readers. I wanted to give this year the send-off it deserved, so I’ve trawled through all of my posts from the last 12 months to bring you some of the highlights!

Book of the year

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This was quite a tough one, as I read a few books I really liked this year. In the end, I went with Burnt Shadows by Kamila Shamsie. The story follows one family through post-war Japan to New York after 9/11. This is a fantastic book; it’s not just a book set in Japan but spreads across countries, generations and religions. Curious?

Film of the year

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Shockingly, I’ve not reviewed that many films for the blog even though I’ve watched a lot. In terms of the ones this blog has encountered, the film of the year is Kagemusha by Akira Kurosawa. This is a re-telling of the man who impersonated the daimyo Takeda Shingen after his death. A classic.

Anime of the year

Kids on the Slope

Hands down, it’s got to be ‘Kids on the Slope’. I love love love love love love this show. Whether you’re an anime fan or not, this is such a brilliant series and everyone should watch it. Read about what it’s actually about here.

DVD distributor of the year

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Obviously, it can only be MVM Entertainment, who have sent me so much anime in the last few months. In terms of prizes, they provided; C for Control, Pumpkin Scissors, Kids on the Slope, Needless, Bodacious Space Pirates, Shana Season 2, Boku X Inu and ef: A Tale of Memories. I’ve seen their release schedule for 2014 and it’s fantastic, meaning there’ll be more reviews and competitions next year, so thanks to them!

Event of the year

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In terms of range of things to see and do, this year’s HYPER JAPAN was a clear winner for me. You can watch the video I made after the weekend here.

Exhibition of the year

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The travelling Souzou: Outsider Art from Japan exhibition at the Wellcome Collection was a clear winner for me. Bizarre and emotional art work with very interesting stories behind each individual piece.

Performance of the year

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This was a toss up between the stage adaption of ‘Shogun’ at Sadler’s Wells Theatre, and the Siro-A performance at Leicester Square Theatre. It was a close one but I went with Siro-A in the end because it was so trippy.

Destination of the year

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I should have written a few more travel pieces this year, so that’s a mental note for 2014. Anyway, from the posts this year, the winner is Miyajima Island.

Restaurant of the year

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I think this has to go to Inamo, because I’ve never had so much fun playing at the (interactive) table at dinner.

Video game of the year

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Arguably cheating as I haven’t written a review yet (it’s coming in January), but the absolute best game I have played in 2013 and will probably never be surpassed in my mind is ‘Ace Attorney 5: Dual Destinies’. I’m obsessed with this series for the Nintendo DS, and the long-awaited latest instalment came out earlier this year. I loved it and will be reviewing it very soon to tell you why I love it so much.

WordPress also gave me a very nice summary of my blog in 2013 too. The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 18,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 7 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

In 2013, there were 72 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 139 posts. There were 305 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 210 MB. That’s about 6 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was May 31st with 204 views. The most popular post that day was WIN! Kids on the Slope.

Resolutions for 2014 are 1) get out more and 2) keep a budget sheet. Blog-wise, I think reviewing more films and writing about more destinations is a good way to go.

And with that, that’s 2013 done. I hope this has been a good year for you all and that 2014 will be even better.

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