Metropolis Magazine
Issue #805 - Friday, Aug 28th, 2009
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tarento watch

Sarah Cortina

Pop legend Hiromi Go, 53, showed off his moves recently at a Roppongi Hills event for Hip-Hop Abs, a new dance workout video. The DVD series, which comes from the creators of Core Rhythms and Billy’s Boot Camp, is debuting in Japan with a promotional tie-in with Go’s new single “Dangan Groove.” The dance sequences in the “Dangan” music video were inspired by hip-hop moves from the workout routine, and its creator, Shaun T, joined Go onstage for a live performance at the event. “Abdominal muscles are the most important part of a person’s body,” Go said. “So I want to make sure I train them.” When asked his opinion of the pop star’s physical condition, Shaun tapped Go’s stomach, then touched the floor and smiled, “It’s just as hard.” SC



Aya Ueto, 23, who appears in a television commercial for Aoki’s new line of wash-and-wear suits, says, “It’s sometimes embarrassing to do commercials because the character in them is definitely not me. In this ad, I had to play a really clean-cut woman, but that really doesn’t suit me.”… Pop idol Shoko Nakagawa, a.k.a. "Shokotan," is promoting a summer event at Tokyo Dome City aimed at helping youngsters meet boyfriends and girlfriends… TV personality Dewi Sukarno is feuding with the Kano sisters, calling them “vixens” and “dull ‘cyborg’ sisters” on her blog. CB


scene around town


What: Japan’s first IMAX Digital Theater

Where: 109 Cinemas in Kawasaki, Saitama and Osaka

When: Starting June 19

Why: IMAX theaters in Japan have a checkered history—purpose-built cinemas in Shinjuku and Shinagawa went bust in 2001 and 2007, respectively. But thanks to a new digital format, IMAX films can now be shown in normal cinema complexes at lower cost. First up is Transformers Revenge, followed by Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in July.

Admission: ¥2,000

See www.109cinemas.net/imax for more details

fascination with…
…train station malls

In 2005, the folks at Tokyo Metro opened up the city’s first Echika dining and shopping complex in Omotesando station. The combination of fancy shops and gourmet eats in a centralized, underground location proved so popular with local fashionistas that other stations followed suit, culminating in the opening of Echika Ikebukuro in March. Now Yokohama station is jumping on the bandwagon with its new Eki-naka, just opened June 2. Located inside the JR line ticket gates near Lumine and the Keikyu line transfer wicket, the space is designed to give women a place to relax and refresh themselves. Amenities include a café, a “baby break room” with picture books and magazines, and a 12-person makeup lounge that’s kept fully stocked with cosmetics and applicators (¥200/30min).


ketchi corner

McDonald’s has finally come up with its answer to the economic recession. The Keiki wo Tsukamou (“Catch on with the economic climate!”) coupon pack costs a kyufukin-friendly ¥12,000 and entitles the bearer to ¥20,000 worth of McD’s goodness. The 69-page booklet features seven menus:

1. Set A (10 tickets): Quarter Pounder, cheeseburger, Big Mac or Shrimp Filet-o, plus fries (M) and a drink (M)

2. Set B (10 tickets): Double cheeseburger, teriyaki burger or Chicken Filet-o, plus fries (M) and a drink (M)

3. Set C (9 tickets): Happy Set or cheeseburger, plus fries (M) and a drink (M)

4. Dessert/side menu (3 tickets): chocolate sundae, Chicken McNuggets or fries (M)

5. Shaka Shaka Chicken (3 tickets)

6. Premium roast coffee (S) hot or ice (30 tickets)

7. Two cold drinks (S) (4 tickets)

Expires midnight Nov 14


mark the date

June
11
Umbrella Day Established by the Japan Umbrella Promotion Association to coincide (roughly) with the start of rainy season
June
14
Royal Host Day Celebration of the family restaurant chain. The date was chosen based on an iffy transliteration of “roy” (roi, 6 & 1) and “ho” (fo, 4)
June
22
Bowling Day The first advertisement for a bowling alley in Japan was published by The Nagasaki Shipping List and Advertiser on this day in 1861
June
25
Housing Day Established by the National Federation of Construction Workers’ Unions in 1978. The date was famed architect Antoni Gaudí’s birthday

Sources: www.day.or.jp; http://hukumusume.com/366


accessory watch

You don’t need us to tell you that Japanese summers can be brutal. Leave home ill-equipped and you risk ending up a sweaty, sunburned wreck by the end of the day. But are your choices of summer accessories responsible or just plain paranoid? Tote up your score and find out.

Sun block (SPF 15 = 1 point; SPF 30 = 2 points; SPF 50 = 3 points)
Skin whitening cream (3 points)
Parasol (3 points)
Sun hat (2 points)
Sunglasses (1 point)
Sweat towel (1 point)
Pack of “powder sheets” (2 points)
Fan (1 point)
Electric fan (3 points)
Water bottle (1 point)
Bottle cooler (2 points)
Sun visor (2 points)
UV gloves (3 points)
Cooling undergarments (2 points)
If you scored…
3 or under You’re probably a construction worker. Your skin feels like leather, and people always guess your age wrongly. Probably by at least ten years
4-7 You’re a rugged outdoors type, though not entirely careless
8-13 You’re sensible. Give yourself a pat on the back, and be prepared to laugh smugly when all your friends get skin cancer
13-17 The Victorians were right, weren’t they? Suntans are for plebs
18 or over You’re actually a vampire. Consider relocating to Antarctica for the duration of the summer

Got something to say about this article? Send a letter to the editor at letters@metropolis.co.jp.

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