The CEN.TAKU.ME Journal #21

America Supports K-Pop @ Facebook

A belated February edition of The CEN.TAKU.ME Journal is here! This edition is also a catch-up of the happenings from the months missed at the end of 2011. However, since February was a short month–and as an excuse to break my writer’s block and catch up–this will only have two highlights for the time being. In this issue: a local movement begins to spread awareness of K-Pop in North America around the globe, and a brief opinion piece on the next installment of the Metal Gear franchise.

America Supports K-Pop

A lot of us tried hard to bring J-Pop to the United States. We’ve asked, asked, and asked to have our favorite band perform… and we get responses. It has been done with the introduction of X-Japan, L’arc~en~ciel, the pillows, and Asian Kung-Fu Generation to the mainstream. It’s becoming a part of everyday life of fans everywhere getting to see our favorite artist perform at conventions, and even general concerts. It’s now time for K-Pop. It gets as much credit as J-Pop, but there is still a lot to be done to get it recognized.

Enter America Supports K-Pop. It is a Facebook page started by friend of CEN.TAKU.ME, Zippy from Tokyo Tower FM. It all started by sharing a story from Soompi of Girls’ Generation’s (So Nyeo Shi Dae/SNSD/소녀시대 in Korea or Shoujo Dijai/SJDJ/少女時代 in Japan) latest release, The Boys, discussed on KIIS-FM in Los Angeles. While it’s a campaign to spread the word of getting the song played on major radio stations, it’s also the place to check for the latest trends of K-Pop’s emergence in North America.

An example would be of Girls’ Generation’s recent performance on The Late Show with David Letterman and Live with Kelly linked below. And don’t forget the recent airing of the Wonder Girls‘ debut movie on Teen Nick. It’s only a matter of time before the Hallyu takes over the States with concerts, already fueled thanks to SMTOWN New York in 2011 and the Wonder Girls / 2PM concert in 2010. Next up for 2012: Big Bang’s ALIVE World Tour.

David Letterman Performance

Live with Kelly Performance

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance

If I kept up with the journal back in December, one of them would have been about the next game in the Metal Gear series. Metal Gear Solid: Rising was announced some time ago and it has been just as long since when Metal Gear Solid 4 was announced in 2006, with a finalized release in 2008. After a secret cancellation due to creative differences, or so the story goes, the game gets another chance–with a new name: Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. The trailer was shown at the 2011 Spike Video Game Awards, with a leaked version released a few hours before it aired on TV.

This is probably just as bad as the “surprise” in Metal Gear Solid 2… And with that it would be hard to explain without spoiling it. If you’ve miraculously followed the epic story of the series, then you probably know about the few questions that have yet to be answered, though Kojima doesn’t have to make Metal Gear, anymore… [/bad meme plug] Originally, MGSR was going to take place before MGS 4. Yes, you read right: “originally”. This is no longer the case due to the new direction of the game.

The star of the game is supposedly Raiden, in his cyborg form from MGS 4. According to fan lore, this would have been the true prequel to Guns of the Patriots. If you’re feeling adventurous, here is the explanation of “surprise”: Raiden turns out to be the main character through the rest of the game. But this ruins the potential backstory of Snake’s rapid aging disease, and the possibility of him becoming the next Big Boss. Non-Spoiler translation: obvious surprise ending has an obvious surprise.

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