THE BEST Japan

First Tracks in Japan

First Tracks in Japan

MTB master Brandon Semenuk takes us on a thrilling ride through the woods of Hakuba Valley, Japan in this clip from Red Bull and Revel Co.’s Light Speed. Watch in awe as Semenuk pulls some epic powerslides, flips, and tricks, as the beautiful and exotic scenery rushes by.

One-Stroke Dragon

One-Stroke Dragon

Artist Keisuke Teshima demonstrates his technique for painting beautiful and dramatic images of dragons using sumi-e brushes. What really makes them special is how he uses a large brush loaded with multiple shades to create their bodies with a single stroke.

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Toyota Woven City

Toyota Woven City

Automotive and mobility company Toyota plans on establishing a 175-acre site at the foot of Japan’s Mt. Fuji to build a prototype city of the future. The location, known as “Woven City” will serve as a real world testbed for tech including autonomy, robotics, personal mobility, smart homes, alternative energy, and AI, among others.

Stroke Cargo Trike

Stroke Cargo Trike

This pedal-assisted electric three-wheeler from japanese company Envision is perfect for jobs where you need to carry lots of gear. Its mid-section storage area provides a balanced ride, and its front independent suspension leans into turns. It can carry up to 60 kg (~132 lb) of cargo, and has a range up to 150km (~93 mi) in its Eco mode.

Westworld IRL

Westworld IRL

Explorer Legend of Micah takes a trip to one of the creepier locations we’ve seen in a while – an abandoned Wild West theme park in Japan. The place is littered with relics of a fake western town, an old 1980s arcade, and even has a disturbing animatronic cowboy, straight out of the original Westworld.

World Order: Exodus

World Order: Exodus

The members of Japan’s electro-pop band and dance crew World Order may have changed over the years, but they’ve still got amazing choreography, as is proven by their latest video, which includes some new moves, along with their crowd favorite robotic walk.

Heavensake Sake

Heavensake Sake

Heavensake sake is a Franco-Japanese marriage made in heaven. Award-winning sparkling wine maker Régis Camus teamed with Japanese brew-masters to artfully blend sake for Western palates with three elegant expressions: Junmai Daiginjo, Junmai Ginjo, and Junmai 12. Like delicious revenge, they’re best served cold.

Osaka Power

Osaka Power

Filmmaker Christoph Gelep takes us on a exhilarating visit to the city of Osaka, a vibrant place that at once is at once living in a neon-lit, cyberpunk present, while still embracing Japanese traditions. The juxtaposition of frenetic hyperlapse footage and close shots of of its residents is a perfect reflection of its culture.

Robot Sword Fight

Robot Sword Fight

While the goal of American robot fighting is total annihilation, Japan prefers to stick with something a little more gentlemanly in its ROBO-ONE duels. Watch as bipedal bots Bluethunder and Metallic Fighter do battle in thoughtful close combat. We’re impressed that they’re able to stand themselves back up after a knock-down.

Life-size Godzilla

Life-size Godzilla

This permanent “life-sized” replica of Godzilla is coming to Japan’s Nijigen no Mori anime theme park on Awaji Island in 2020. A massive lizard measuring 65′ x 82′ x 180′ will dominate Godzilla Interception Operation, which will feature several “missions” including a shooting game and a zipline that rides into the monster’s mouth.

Winter in Japan in 8K

Winter in Japan in 8K

You don’t need an 8K display to enjoy the stunning white imagery captured by video production company Armadas around Japan’s Mt. Moriyoshi. The conditions there are ideal for covering trees with an snowy and icy mix that occurs when clouds and fog freeze onto their branches and leaves.

Shark Tea Bags

Shark Tea Bags

We’re gonna need a bigger cup. Somehow a great white shark has made its way into your kitchen, and is swimming around in your tea. Fortunately, that’s not blood in the water, but just the red from a fragrant hibiscus and rosehip tea blend. Still, sip at your own risk. Sold in sets of three. Also available from CD Japan.

15 Year-old Skateboard Champ

15 Year-old Skateboard Champ

Isamu Yamamoto may be just 15 years old as of this writing, but he’s one of the world’s best freestyle skateboarders, having won the World Round-Up Freestyle Skateboarding Championships in 2017 and 2018. Kuma Films spent a couple of days in Otsu, Japan with the talented kid, where he showed off a few of his sick moves.

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Akira Remix

Akira Remix

(Gore) Eclectic Method pays tribute to one of the greatest anime films of all time, with this funky remix of sound bites from Katsuhiro Otomo’s visionary 1988 cyberpunk classic Akira. We were hoping to see a bit more of Neo-Tokyo though.

Amazon Box Weapons

Amazon Box Weapons

Crafty Transformer takes the cardboard boxes he receives Amazon orders in and converts them into awesome weapons and machines inspired by video games. Among our favorites are the Gundam wrench mace, the Yu-Gi-Oh! duel disk, and the Monster Hunter bowgun.

Japan in 8K

Japan in 8K

While it’s unlikely most of you have a system or display capable of displaying 8K resolution at 60fps, Armadas’ incredibly vibrant and razor-sharp aerial footage captured around Japan looks great in 1080p or 4K as well. Locations include Hakodate, Yokohama, Nagoya, Kyoto, and Tokyo.

What Not to Do in Japan

What Not to Do in Japan

(PG-13: Language) British expat Chris Broad has been living in Japan for a while now, and has some pointers for things you never should do while in the country. It’s a humorous, but very useful look at Japanese manners and decorum. TL;DW: Don’t play with your chopsticks.

Japan’s Best Marching Band

Japan’s Best Marching Band

March along with the Kyoto Tachibana Senior High School Band for an incredibly precise and energetic performance that will have you glued to your screen for the next 27 minutes. Nicknamed the “Orange Devils,” the group has achieved global fame with appearances from Disneyland to the Tournament of Roses Parade.

Godzilla Guitar

Godzilla Guitar

This incredible handmade musical monster has a body sculpted to look just like Godzilla, complete with a pointy spine, scaly skin, sharpened teeth and claws, and purple LED lighting to show it all off. If The Awesomer was a heavy metal band, all of our instruments would be based on Kaiju.

Japanese James Brown

Japanese James Brown

Zainichi Funk’s 2011 track Bakudan Kowai (“Scary Bomb”) showcases what James Brown might sound like in one of those ridiculously oddball alternative universes that turns up on Rick and Morty, in which James Brown is replaced with a diminutive Japanese man.

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Toyota GR Supra Drift by HKS

Toyota GR Supra Drift by HKS

The 2020 Toyota GR Supra is pretty sweet car in its own right, and Toyota is really encouraging tuners to make it their own. Check out this awesome shakedown footage of a completely reworked Supra Drift car made by HKS as it gets ready for the Goodwood Festival of Speed. It even packs a classic 2JZ engine.

Shiba Dog 1,000 Yen Products

Shiba Dog 1,000 Yen Products

Illustrator Ponkichi proposed a new currency design for Japan – a 1000 yen note featuring a shiba inu dog. While we doubt the Japanese treasury has a sense of whimsy, you’ll can buy the image on wallets and other accessories from Space Factory or Amazon Japan. The 2,000 yen design ensures cat lovers don’t feel left out.

Tokyo Apocalypse

Tokyo Apocalypse

A brief, but well-executed promo animation for the 2019 Festival International Du Film D’Animation d’Annecy. Students from the Gobelins animation school envision a world filled with guys in kaiju costumes stomping around a tiny Tokyo, slapping each other about in a monster-sized wrestling match.

Samurai Bottle Helmets

Samurai Bottle Helmets

Make liquor bottles extra special with Tadayasu’s fancy bottle toppers. The Samurai Bottle Helmet comes in designs based on the actual helmets worn by some of the country’s most famous feudal warlords.

Bottle-flipping Robots

Bottle-flipping Robots

During Japan’s RoboCon 2018, high school students presented their designs for single-purpose robots made specifically to toss bottles filled with liquid, and land them perfectly with way more consistency than most humans could. There’s bottle-flipping action here.

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