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Special Guest: Charles Kwong

"I think it's time we blow this scene. Get everybody this stuff together... Okay, 3, 2, 1. Let's jam!"

So glad that I can break into this column. My name is Charles Kwong. I'm an anime fan in Hong Kong. Maybe you've seen me (and Hikaru) in newsgroups long time ago, but somehow my name disappeared. Perhaps you've already visited my homepages before but don't know me, because I normally don't put my name on them:

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Instead of normal a-few-line introduction of myself (which is boring) plus a few web sites that you may not care, I'd prefer writing something that *MAY INTEREST YOU*.

What do you think about Hong Kong? Do you know where's Hong Kong anyway? If you have no idea, the following facts may give you some clue:

-- the venue of 13th Gundam Fight Tournament (Kidou Butoden G Gundam)
-- the beautiful city where Camille Vidan and Four Murasame meet (Z Gundam)
-- the place Kinomoto Sakura travels (Cardcaptor Sakura movie)

Maybe you can think of more...

Hong Kong is one of the earliest anime city outside Japan. Hong Kong is probably the most favourite place in the real world outside Japan in which anime makers use as story background.

In Hong Kong, you don't have to be rich to be an anime fan. You don't even need to buy anime. You can see anime on local TV stations everyday. Every morning. Every afternoon. Every night. Most of them Chinese dubbed of course.

You don't need to mail order or online order any anime stuff. Anime tapes, VCDs and other stuff are available everywhere. Some original from Japan. Some from Taiwan. Some from Hong Kong. Newspaper stalls or convenience stores often carry translated manga and even some anime stuff. Many local non-anime magazines (especially computer, games, or entertainment magazines) have regular anime news column and often carry anime freebies, like desktop themes CD-ROM, posters, etc. A few months ago a local Hong Kong radio channel aired a translated radio animation from the three original Gundam movies!

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In Hong Kong, you won't be treated with strange eyes for buying anime things. Most of HK youngsters and even many older people know some popular anime like Doraemon, Gundam, Sailor Moon, Pokemon, Chibi Maruko or may even heard of cosplay. Anime has drawn extremely high public concern here. Although I admit the perception of the majority here is that most anime are for children, anime is widely accepted by Hong Kong people. (Well, Hong Kong is the most capitalist place in the world. Anything can make money will draw merchants concern, then public concern... ^_^;)

Any anime-related things happened in Japan can be assumed happened/will be happened in Hong Kong. Most of the anime, regardless whether it's TV series, OVA or movie, will go to Hong Kong very shortly (normally from a few days to 3 years). The only problems are when and through which media -- TV, translated LD/tape/VCD release, or in cinema. If broadcast on TV, the anime will mostly be dubbed. In other media it may be dubbed or subbed. Hong Kong has companies releasing official translated anime. Hong Kong has fansub groups. Hong Kong has bootleggers. Hong Kong has anime clubs. Hong Kong has doujinshi groups and cosplay groups. Hong Kong has anime newsgroups as well. The premier one is . Lots of anime experts there!

Even recent seiyuu boom in Japan has spreaded to Hong Kong, although the extend is not as large as in Japan. A popular local seiyuu newsgroup has been set up recently. You can click to access it. Most of the postings in Hong Kong newsgroups are in Chinese. Don't mind too much posting in English, though. Most of the HK youngsters can read and write English. ^_^

As a boy born and grow up in Hong Kong, I watch anime when I was just a few years old. I watch anime as I grew up. I quickly become an anime fan.

Before the 90's I still heavily relied on TV for anime and a local anime magazine A-Club for anime news. In the early 90's, I started my university study. One day when I came across Internet and anime newsgroups (at the time rec.arts.anime still active) in a computer lab, and I quickly got hooked. I became involved in Internet anime world. I and Hikaru sold anime stuff in anime newsgroups. I scanned anime trading cards and uploaded them to ftp servers. I was one of the authors for the KOR Guide. I can still remember the days downloading anime pics from ftp.venice overnight... at the time I was in the university, I became less poor and could start affording anime stuff, so piles of anime CDs, books, stuff (mainly deskpad) collection built up in my room. However, compared with many other anime fans in Hong Kong, I'm "just another normal anime fan" in Hong Kong.

Thanks to the Internet, I can talk about anime with fans in another side of Pacific. However, as times goes by, things have changed. Although anime newsgroups still popular, the web becomes the premier source of information on the Internet, even for anime news.

After I learned HTML I have a temptation to do every single anime I like. However, due to different reasons only very few of them released. Others just stopped halfway. Some because of lack of materials. Some because of dissatisfaction. Some are due to other excuses. Some are just plain lazy of me...

I found one sentence in my recent favorite manga "Kareshi Kanojo no Jijou" very suitable for me. "In my imaginary world, my work efficiency is very high". The manga author Tsuda Masami describes herself like that. Well, I found myself more or less the same. In my imaginary world, I can finish every project on schedule. I always have my favorite anime characters helping me, such that I can finish everything very quickly, but in reality... you know... ^_^;;

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Okay, go to the usual stuff...

Some of my current webpicks listed below. These are what I can remember right now... I have to say that my picks differ from time to time, so at the time you see this list, it may have changed. (^_^;) Of course what's popular in Japan and Hong Kong is a very important factor of what sites I visit often...

Taiho Shichauzo TV series has just finished re-air in Hong Kong, but I still can't forget the perfect duo Natsumi and Miyuki. I miss them so much! is the best English-language Taiho Shichauzo page I've ever seen. If you can understand Chinese, I highly recommend you to take a look at . Its design is superb, and it's very easy for visitors to get the information they need... actually this page made me give up the idea of making a YUA page of my own, because it's too good... ^_^;;

Same as MadDog's YUA page, Emily's Cowboy Bebop page is going to stop me from doing a Cowboy Bebop page of my own, because it's too good. I'm really impressed by the layout. I think Emily's graphic design skill is at professional level. Great page indeed. Apart from her excellent Cowboy Bebop page, her page also has a huge collection of anime Winamp skins . It's one of the essentials in your anime bookmark. If you're a fan of Faye Valentine, please take a look at the great page Untouchable Shrew Woman. It has an in-depth analysis of Faye. The layout and the content are as good as Emily's page.

Recently I fell in love with graceful, all-rounded Kiel Heim ojou-sama (^_^;;) in Turn A Gundam. Although Hong Kong has fansub which has only a few weeks lag, sometimes I just can't wait(^_^;;). AMO Turn A Gundam actually helps me a lot in updating this series.

Gundam Project

Gundam X is now on local TV. These two are the Gundam pages I regularly visit when I want to check Gundam information. You'll find everything you want. Another essential in your anime bookmark.

Since Macross Plus, I started to put an eye on Kanno Yoko's music. She broadened my view of anime music, and probably many of you too. (^_^) These few weeks I always took the Cowboy Bebop "No Disc" OST and Turn A Gundam OST with me. Definitely "No Disc" will soon be one of my all-time favorite anime CDs. Her style is totally different from other musicians. Always giving me surprises. You can listen to the music style totally different from when you may expect from the title, like Macross Plus, Cowboy Bebop, Turn A Gundam. When I see from that Kanno-sensei went to and played piano, I WAS SO ENVIOUS! I just wish I was there!

If you want to listen to her work I recommend you to go to Tenkuu no Kanno Yoko page. Personally I think the design is a little bit weird -- too dark and the design gave me a horror feeling, but the facts are comprehensive, reviews are detailed and you can download part of her music for preview. The most comprehensive and up-to-date Kanno Yoko page around the Internet.

Altbough Anime Voices Paradise has stopped updating for half a year, this page is still one of the best seiyuu page on the Internet. Its complete coverage about seiyuu normally does not exist in other seiyuu pages. Another place I normally check is Seiyuu Photo Gallery in Anime Hideaway. It lets you to search for seiyuu info according to anime series. Apart from seiyuu info, it gives you CD info as well. Hitoshi Doi's Seiyuu Database is probably the anime-related search engine I(and probably many other anime fans) use most often.

If you want to know about Hong Kong CV, I suggest you to take a look at Fan Club of Hong Kong Dubbing Artists. It has a local CV database, contact points of some local CV, links to other similar pages and of course fan club activities. The most complete local CV page I've seen so far...

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presents ! Gives you complete coverage of cons in Hong Kong. Brings you scene of this anime paradise! Click to know more!


Doujinshi in Hong Kong has been over a decade. Doujin Hin can give you an idea of doujinshi development here, from history to up-to-date douijnshi news. For cosplay in Hong Kong, although still in infant stage, it has already gained public concern. If you want more about cosplay here, I'll recommend my page Doujinshi Road. It covers most recent doujinshi/cosplay cons in Hong Kong. Although the descriptions are short, its tons of photos can give you more than you need, bringing you scene here.

Okay, I think that's all for the moment. Hope you'll enjoy reading it. :)

"See you space cowboy..."

Anipike not being responsible for Acts of God or the vaguaries of humans  ;)
this column will appear 'as and when' articles come in. New articles will
be announced on the "New List" page. (So original, da yo..^^)

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Last Update: 9/20/99