Cultural References in Lucky Star
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Join Date: Feb 2007
EP 20 References Part A
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Shokukan and Kaado
The very first sketch is devoted to Kona's awesome skills at finding rare prizes in snack boxes and rare game cards. The included prizes in these snack foods are called
（Shokugan, short for "food toys"), and there's an incredible amount of variety of them in Japan. Although some snacks include prizes in every pack, most of the treasured prizes are limited edition promotional items made to boost sales. They are highly popular because they are usually very well-made for a free toy; some good ones even rival the the detail offered by PVC figurines. Like Gashapons, real otas would collect the rare ones. Same goes with collectible game cards, which in Japan there are about 10x more variety; finding the rare ones takes skill.
It's ironic that Kona's showing off her l33t skills since just recently she was found with tons of choco wafers from "神羅万象" (Shinranbanshyo) card/snack pack. It means she DIDN'T get the card she wanted and was forced to buy so much packets that she has to give the wafers away. Another thing I found reading otaku blogs is that almost everyone of them said you CANNOT shake the boxes because 1. the store owners will kick you out, and 2. You may damage the precious prize inside. It's fascinating to see L*S otas went against their patron saint. Now I'm not sure exactly which prize/card she was after (and no one in Japan knew either), which is surprising given the number of real world references in the show.
The Ultimate Shokugan for Kagami and Konata: Pocky x Gundam!
Shelf filled with Gundam cards and Shokugan snacks: the kind Kona loves
Otaku in the Media
When Kona was complaining about otaku portrayal in the media, she was refering to the sudden surge of interest in otaku culture in the mass media in the last few years. While there are specials on TV focusing on Akiba or talk shows on Otaku crime, the most popular property was of course
(Densha Otoko), a story about a 2ch otaku's quest to GET a hottie he rescued from a drunk on a train. Another one was a best selling book called "
" (Fujoshi Girlfriend), an excerpt of a
in book form written by a regular guy dating a pretty Fujoshi. It's a pretty funny read about his mis-adventure with a fully blown fujoshi who makes Gundam references when she sees fast red cars (Red ones are 3x faster) and steals his credit card so she can buy Fate/stay night game on Amazon (too embarrassed to use her own name!). They generally give good impression of otaku to the rest of the world, so I'm not sure exactly why Kona's still angry.
"Fujoshi Kanojo"'s funny
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Katsukabe Anime Club
The two guys behind Konata while she's talking about otaku on TV was holding a copy of "
" (Suzumiya Hauri no Koushiki) Anime Guide Book. Those two guys actually looked like Computer Club members from Haruhi anime, according to some ota.
Required Otaku Reading
The Exploding Insects
Cultural and Anime references relating to killing insects. First Kona-jiji told Konata about the story of how the Master Swordsman,
(Miyamoto Musash), captured a fly with his chopsticks. Musashi is a legendary samurai in Japan, considered by most to be the best swordsman in history. He's won a number of famous duels and lived a long, fruitful life; even wrote a book on swordsmanship and philosophy called the "Book of Five Rings", a tome that's still studied today.
As Kona bare-handedly murdered a mosquito filled with her dad's blood, the sound she made and the flashing graphics is a reference to "
" (Hotoko no Ken or Fist of the North Star). That's the sound effect when an enemy is damaged by Kenshiro's Hokuto Shinken. When Kona-jiji trapped another mosquito by flexing his arm, he was then transformed into the Great Kenshiro himself, and performed his most famous line, "お前は既に死んでいる" (You're already dead). This is due to the effect of the Hokuto Shinken, which kills its victim moments after the Shiken was performed on the poor guy by exploding them into a bloody mess. Kona-jiji though the mosquito would suffer the same fate by sqeezing harder, which is of course otaku delusion.
Sexy, Manga-Reading Kagamin
The manga Kagami was reading were volume 1-3 of
) and volume 1-3 of
（Mirai Nikki, The Future Diary). We don't know what game Kona was playing exactly, but some people have said it felt like
, which is definitely possible since it was KyoAni's last big project before L*S.
Great Kadokawa manga you better buy right now!
Sweet Fountain of Aura
The show on TV as the Chibko-sisters were watching TV was a very strange "spiritual" program called "
" (Gokubun Taichi, Miwa Akihiro, Ehara Hiroyuki's Fountain of Aura). This is a basically a new age "spiritual" show about ghosts, ESP powers, and past live viewing/fortune telling. Anything relating to the spirit world can be discussed here. It's a show hosted by Gokubun Taichi of the idol group TOKIO, plus a "Preacher of Love" and a "Spiritual Counselor" who can see ghosts. Each week a guest is featured and his or her "spiritual sensitivity" is measured. It's as wacky as they come; I can totally see why KyoAni wanted to mention this show.
While shows about the unknown and the world of the spirits hosted by male idol or grade school children (I'm not kidding here) are super popular on Japanese TV, everyone knows that the only thing more popular than a Johnny's boy is FOOD. There are endless number of foody shows on TV. From food competitions (Douchi no Cooking Show, one of my favorite that has since ended), competitive eating (the big eaters are usually skinny guys or women), celebrity cooking (of uneatable food), cooking on a budget (live one month off 10,000 yen!), cooking your own catch, to comedians eating anything and everything for laughs. But just in case you didn't get enough food, there's a number of specials throughout the year about food. One of these special about Sweets ( a summer favorite) is what Yutaka wanted to watch.
Now one of a well-known (note not popular) "reporter" on the show is a fellow named
(Hiko Maro), who often are the taster of the food featured on these specials. One of his famous (or rather infamous) line after eating is this line "まるでXXXの宝石箱やぁ～～！！" (It's as if it's a Jewel Box of XXX!). Most people feel this line and all his other line are pretty lame and dishonest, so even KyoAni decided to make fun of it by having him say this line in L*S (He's the dude on TV eating the cake):
(It's as if it's the Hare Hare Dance of Sweets!) So now you all know how lame this dude is. But the food featured on these shows are pretty sweet; it really show you how much better Japanese food/cooking is compare to the food show we have here. The Sweets especially.. you have not tasted dessert until you've tried a
cake made from fresh cream and chestnut paste...
I was going to show a photo of that creepy show but a really gorgeous Mont Blanc is better:
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