Animate's ongoing Hozuki no Reitetsu exhibit shows that Hell isn't such a bad place, so long as you aren't a damned soul or, even worse, a bureaucrat stifled by layers of red tape.
Our visit to the underworld was greeted by character art printed on the steps. I love the way the perspective stretches them out like a funhouse mirror! You know, I'm sure there's a Buddhist Hell that puts your body through a taffy pull with similar results...
Once inside, the animation cells were off-limits but everything else was photo friendly. It was a relief to see the characters returned to their proper proportions for these standees.
Sorry, Hozuki's spiked club isn't for sale. Though any self-respecting cosplayer would make their own. I can already imagine the lines of cross-players in black kimonos at the next Comiket.
Japanese men often joke that their strict spouse is an oni wife, but Hozuki is creating a demand for oni husbands! As far as strong silent types with bowl cuts go, he's twice the man Levi is (vertically speaking) so I can understand the appeal.
There was no shortage of character goods. Each purchase of 500 yen or more comes with a sticker of a character wearing a goldfish plant costume. Wonder who would win in a screaming contest?
Hell's a great place to visit but I wouldn't want to stay. Time to return to the land of the living. Huh? What do you mean we can't pass unless we make a contract with you? But I'm too young to become a magical girl! I'm still waiting for my first gray hair.
Exhibit ran from January 9th to 26th at Ikebukuro Animate and February 1st-16th at Shibuya Animate.
Animate exhibit homepage: http://www.animate.co.jp/special/only_shop/pc/#all_hozuki