I will never ever refer to Books Nippan by a derogatory name. Yuji Hiramatsu was a hard working guy and did me favors I didn't even know about. His customer service was above and beyond what anyone could hope for.greg wrote:Books Nippan, aka "Crooks Nippan"! I actually visited their downtown Los Angeles store a couple of times back in the late '90s. I don't know when they eventually disappeared at last, but they were a pioneer in the anime goods retail industry. I do remember seeing stuff like soundtraks and other such merchandise for better prices at Kinokuniya and Asahiya Books in Little Tokyo, though. People on rec.arts.anime and elsewhere would complain about their prices, but back in those days, before the Internet had fully established itself, it was difficult and expensive for me to buy import stuff from anywhere, be it Shonen Knife CDs from Japan or Peter Schilling CDs from Germany.
So what is this red cover/blue cover storyboard book you're talking about? Do you have pics? I may be able to help track one down here.
Books Nippan went into decline when the U.S. Dollar took an unexpected weakening against the Japanese Yen around 1985. At this time Yuji went back (was summoned back? Fired? nobody knows) to Nippon Shuppan Hanbai K.K. and the animation specialty business was left in the hands of Keven Seymore who wasn't that interested, he would rather promote Japanese Metal Rock magazines and fancy airbrush art books to major accounts like B. Dalton and Waldenbooks. Prices went up, selection declined (as the anime book biz hit a surprising downturn, with magazines folding left and right- some blame Zeta Gundam but that's another story)
Anyway, the books. Published by Shogakukan in 1982-4 as part of their open challenge to Tokuma Shoten's Roman Album line, the This Is Animation product line was really very cool, with Macross being their flagship license. The books I refer to were called "This Is Animation '(full title) Macross' Establishment Materials (vol. 1/ vol. 2)", 1,200 Yen each. V.1 has a dark blue cover with a line illo on the front, v.2 is a red dustjacket with different chara illo. Roughly 10 1/4 inch tall by 8 1/4 inch wide, about 248 pages plus a pull-out color poster. Divided into sections, the first the typical color 'episode breakdown' thing, the middle is a decent amount establishment drawings, plus roughs, for chara, mecha, setti, costumes and all that, and the thickest section is the AR scripts with some storyboards, including what seems to be notational comments about dialog changes and/or edits. All in Japanese of course.
I don't think, in the end, there's anything in these books that isn't duplicated SOMEWHERE in the vast number of volumes published about Macross, but it's a very handy way to refer to something in a specific episode if some question pops into one's brain, and my OCD is of course endlessly screaming about having that gap in the collection.
(Don't ask about Dirty Pair books. Oy, so many I need!)
I appreciate the offer, but I can't afford such luxuries at the moment. What little money I have is being dedicated to try and keep up with Yamato 2199 treasures. Seems there's ALWAYS something neat showing up 'three months away' and around $30-50 USD. *sigh*
But don't let my cashless state keep you from looking for these books for yourself! They really are quite nice in design and layout and the two volumes combined make a good portable Macross guide. They look PROFESSIONAL on a bookshelf.
Man, if there's anything I regret, it's that Shogakukan pulled the plug on the This Is Animation line. Their annual 'Year In Animation' (1983 and 1984) were REALLY handy.
Is that too much info? I've been told I tend to go on and on.
ETA: These books are REALLY hard to find on Yahoo Japan. I've only seen them once in a rare while in my searches. Lots of the three 'The Select' books but not these.