Anime Companion Supplement - B

Ba -Be -Bi - Bo -Bu -

This series of pages is a supplement to two of my books The Anime Companion and The Anime Companion 2

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See the regular entry pages for cross references between variant terms, differing spellings, English to Japanese terms and names:
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Special Supplement: Rurouni Kenshin OVAs

Each Supplement page consists of:
1. A list of entries in the books with page numbers.
2. New entries for items not found in the books.
3. Japanese characters for entries
4. Secondary sources used to find information for each entry.
5. Additional information for some entries.
6. Links to select Internet resources related to the entries.

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For more information about this supplement see The Anime Companion Supplement main page. Additions are announced in the Anime Companion Supplement News page and in my Blog.

Hyphenated Japanese terms are listed as single words.

The inclusion of an anime or manga title in these entries is not a recommendation of that title, see my Recommended Anime and Manga page for a list of my recommendations

BADGER see: tanuki (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.133)

baishin (vassal's vassal) 陪臣
A vassal of a vassal. In the Edo Period (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.25) powerful samurai (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.110), such as daimyō (The Anime Companion 2 p.15), would have direct vassals (jikisan) who had the income and responsibility to have vassals of their own. The lower-level vassals of vassals were the baishan of their master's master according to the hierarchy of the time. Thusly the direct vassals of a Tokugawa Clan (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.137) fudai daimyō (The Anime Companion 2 p.20) were the baishin of the shōgun (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.123). Baishin are sometime referred to as matamono and the term is variously translated as: vassal's vassal, rear vassal and secondary vassal.
In Kaze Hikaru (v.16 p.27) Matsumoto Ryojun recalls being looked down upon when he married into the Matsumoto family as he was a baishin.
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.93
Yamaguchi Momoo, Kojima Setsuko. A Cultural Dictionary of Japan p.278

BAKA BOMB see: Ōka (The Anime Companion 2 p.67)

bakemono (monster) 化け物 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.8)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.93
bakeneko (monster cat) 化け猫 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.8)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.169
Joya, Mock. Mock Joya's Things Japanese p.180
Bakin 馬琴 [full name Takizawa Bakin 滝沢馬琴 OLD FORM 瀧澤馬琴] (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.8)
Who's Who of Japan p.119
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.93
baku (dream eater) 獏 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.9)
Must-See in Nikko p.69
Joya, Mock. Japanese Customs and Manners p.151
Joya, Mock. Mock Joya's Things Japanese p.430
bakufu (shōgunate) 幕府 (The Anime Companion 2 p.8)
Bush, Lewis. Japanalia p.40
Cybriwsky, Roman. Historical Dictionary of Tokyo p. 29
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p. 1406


Bakumatsu 幕末 (The Anime Companion 2 p.8)
Craig, Albert M. Chōshū in the Meiji Restoration p.xxi

BALL see: temari

BALL AND SPIKE TOY see: kendama (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.66)

BALL OF FLOATING FIRE see: hitodama (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.46)


dango (The Anime Companion 2 p.15)

takoyaki (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.132)

BALL, LARGE HUNG OUTSIDE BUSINESS see: sakaya (sake brewer and dealer)

BALLS (TESTICLES) see: kintama (golden balls)

BAMBOO FLUTE, END-BLOWN see: shakuhachi (bamboo flute) (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.116)

BAMBOO OR WOOD FOOD STEAMER see: seirō (The Anime Companion 2 p.81)

BAMBOO PIPE MOVING UP AND DOWN, GARDEN DECORATION see: shishiodoshi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.122)

BAMBOO POLE see: saodake (laundry pole)

BAMBOO 'SHEATHS' USED AS WRAPPERS see: takenokawa (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.131)

BAMBOO SHOOT see: takenoko (The Anime Companion 2 p.96)

BAMBOO SWORD see: shinai (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.119)

BAND TO TIE UP SLEEVES OF KIMONO see: tasuki (cord to tie sleeves)

bandai (elevated seat) 番台
A stand or seat for a lookout, by a derivative meaning the lookout is also called a bandai. The most commonly seen form in anime and manga is attendant seated in a raised counter between the men's and women's entrances to older style public bath (sentō; The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.115). The person at the bandai in a sentō, collects the entrance fee, sells various items customers may need such as razors, shampoo, soap and hand towels as well as chats with regular customers. This person is often an elderly member of the family that owns the sentō as they can see into both the men's and women's changing areas.
Ataru asks to buy a razor from the old woman at the bandai in an episode of Urusei Yatsura (ep.101), of course he is too young to use it and is actually attempting to peak into the women's side.
In Old Boy (v.6 p.154) an old man snoozes in front of a TV he has placed at the counter of the bandai.
Illustrated A Look Into Japan p.108
Illustrated Living Japanese Style p.62
Kiritani, Elizabeth. Vanishing Japan. Traditions Crafts & Culture p.169
Shogakukan Progressive Japanese-English Dictionary p.1434
Bandai Bijuaru Kabushiki Gaisha (Bandai Visual Co. Ltd.) バンダイビジュアル株式会社
Bandai Visual Co. Ltd. Originally named AE Planning as a subsidiary of the Bandai Company, the name was changed to Bandai Visual Sales Co. Ltd in 1989 and again to Bandai Visual Co. Ltd in 1991. Bandai Visual is a major player in the anime industry with several major titles and series in it's catalog which exceeded 1,000 titles by 2002. In 2001 the company shares were listed on the Jasudakku Shōken Torihikisho (JASDAQ Securities Exchange). In 2003 shares were listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange (Tōkyō Shōken Torihikijo; The Anime Companion 2 p.105). In 2005 the company established a whole owned subsidiary Bandai Visual USA Inc. in the United States.
Keiichi reaches the Bandai Visual offices when he tries to dial Heaven in the Ah! My Goddess TV series (ep.20)
[About us : History] BANDAI VISUAL CO.,Ltd; accessed September 22, 2007
Web Site:
Bandai Visual Co. Ltd

BANDAI VISUAL see: Bandai Bijuaru Kabushiki Gaisha (Bandai Visual Co. Ltd.)

Bandō Tamasaburō V 坂東玉三郎 (Bandō Tamasaburō), 五代目坂東玉三郎 (Bandō Tamasaburō V) (The Anime Companion 2 p.8)
Leiter, Samuel. New Kabuki Encyclopedia p.39

BANISHMENT see: hamon hamon (formal expulsion)

BANNER 'GREAT CATCH' FLAG see: tairyō-bata (large haul flag)

BANNER KNIGHT see: hatamoto (The Anime Companion 2 p.27)

BANNER MEN see: hatamoto (The Anime Companion 2 p.27)


fū-rin-ka-zan (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.31)

hata (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.42)

koinobori (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.72)

matoi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.81)

nobori (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.96
banzai 万歳 OLD FORM 萬歳 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.9)
Vardaman, James M. and Michiko Sakaki Vardaman Japan From A to Z p.13
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.100

BAR see: snack (The Anime Companion 2 p.93)

BAR GIRL see: hosutesu (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.47)

BARKER see: yobi-komi

BARLEY TEA see: mugicha (The Anime Companion 2 p.58)

BARRIER STATION see: sekisho (barrier station)

Bashō 芭蕉 (Matsuo Bashō 松尾芭蕉) (The Anime Companion 2 p.8)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.101
De Mente, Boye Lafayette. Japan Encyclopedia p. 38
Who's Who of Japan p. 122

BASKET-LIKE HAT see: tengai

BATH HOUSE ATTENDANT see bandai (bath house attendant)

BATH IN HOME see: furo (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.31)

BATH, PUBLIC, AT HOT SPRING see: onsen (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.102)

BATH, PUBLIC. see: sentō (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.115)

BATILLUS CORNUTUS see: sazae (turbo or top-shell)

BATTLE OF DANNOURA see: Dannoura no Tatakai (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.21)

BATTLE OF GORYŌKAKU see: Goryōkaku no Tatakai (The Anime Companion 2 p.24)

BATTLE OF ŌSAKA CASTLE see Ōsaka no Jin (Battle of Ōsaka Castle)

BATTLE OF SEKIGAHARA see: Sekigahara no Tatakai (The Anime Companion 2 p.81)

BATTLE OF TOBA-FUSHIMI see: Toba-Fushimi no Tatakai (The Anime Companion 2 p.100)

BATTLEDORE MARKET see: hagoita (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.38)

BATTLEDORE see: hagoita (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.38)

battō-jutsu 抜刀術 OLD FORM 拔刀術 (The Anime Companion 2 p.9)
Frederic, Louis Dictionary of the Martial Arts p.13
Warner, Gordon and Donn F. Draeger Japanese Swordsmanship: Technique and Practice p.50-56, 59, 81, 84, 93

BAYSHORE EXPRESSWAY see: shuto kōsoku wangan sen (The Anime Companion 2 p.90)

BEAD, CURVED see: magatama (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.78)

BEAD, HAIRPIN see: kanzashi dama (hairpin bead)

BEAN BAG SUSHI see: inarizushi

BEAN JELLY BUNS see: anpan (The Anime Companion 2 p.5)

BEAN WASHER see: azuki arai (azuki bean washer)

BEAUTY PICTURE see: bijinga (beauty picture)

BECKONING CAT see: manekineko (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.79)

BEDDING see: futon (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.32)

BEEF BOWL see: gyūdon (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.37)


gyūnabe (The Anime Companion 2 p.24)

sukiyaki (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.126)

BEEPERS see: poke-beru (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.104)


BEER see: bīru (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10)

BEGINNERS MARK see shoshinsha-māku

BELL ON ROPE AT SHRINE see: suzu (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.129)

BELL RINGING AT NEW YEARS see: joya no kane (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.55)

BELL see: bonshō (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.13)
see: hanshō (fire alarm bell)

BELLY BANDS see: hara (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.41)

benjo (toilet) 便所 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.9)
A Look Into Japan p.164
Japanese Family and Culture p.46
Living Japanese Style p.12
A Look Into Tokyo p.172
Vardaman, James M. and Michiko Sakaki Vardaman Japanese Etiquette Todayp.38, 49
Vardaman, James M. and Michiko Sakaki Vardaman Japan From A to Z p.112
Benkei 弁慶 OLD FORM 辨慶 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.106
Who's Who of Japan p.45
Benten 弁天 OLD FORM 辯天, or Benzaiten 弁財天 OLD FORM 辨財天, or 弁才天 OLD FORM 辯才天 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10)
A Look Into Tokyo p.47

BENTEN KOZŌ (KABUKI PLAY) see: Aoto-zōshi hana no nishiki

BENTEN MUSUME MEONO SHIRANAMI see: Aoto-zōshi hana no nishiki

BENTIN THE THIEF see: Aoto-zōshi hana no nishiki

bentō (box lunch for one person) べんとう or 弁当 OLD FORM 辨當 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.106
Outlook on Japan p.67
bentō bako (bentō box) 弁当箱
A box for a bentō (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10) meal. These come in a variety of shapes, sizes and materials. The most common are oval or square with a single layer, often they are divided inside. Bentō bako can also be in more than one layer but rarely more than two. The size of the box is usually marked in milliliters. The size to use is determined by the appetite of the user, small ones (250ml to 350ml) for children, larger (500ml to 700ml) for adults and perhaps even larger (900ml to 1100) for a growing teen or adult with a large appetite. The most common examples on the market are plastic, metal, and wood, some are lacquered. The kind used at bentō-ya and konbini are usually made from recyclable plastic as they are intended to be disposable. In Japan it is common to use furoshiki (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.31) to carry bentō bako.
Kyoko asks Godai for the bentō bako that she had given him that morning in episode 80 of Maison Ikkoku.
In Sailor Moon R (ep.55) Mako gets justifiably angry when her bentō bako is stepped on.
Itoh Makiko. The Just Bento Cookbook p.114-115
Observations in shops in San Francisco and Tokyo

BENTŌ BOX see: bentō bako (bentō box)

BENTŌ SHOP see: bentō-ya (bentō shop)

bentō-ya (bentō shop) 弁当屋
A simple store that sells convenient take out bentō (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10) meals packaged in disposable containers. The meals can be hot or cold depending on the type of food. In some shops the rice is added hot at the last moment. While most are family run, there are some large chains of bentō-ya.
A detective stops at a bentō shop in 20th Century Boys (v.2 p.57) to ask about a family that had lived in the neighborhood.
Ashburne, John & Abe Yoshi. World Food Japan p.162
Hosking, Richard. A Dictionary of Japanese Food p.209
Illustrated Living Japanese Style p.53

BENZAITEN see: Benten (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10)

Berusaiyu no Bara (The Rose of Versailles) ベルサイユのばら (The Anime Companion 2 p.9)
Schilling, Mark. The Encyclopedia of Japanese Pop Culture p. 206-9
Schodt, Frederik. Dreamland Japan p.257
Schodt, Frederik. Manga! Manga! p.215
betobeto-san べとべとさん
A yōkai (see bakemono; The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.8) that makes a sound of footsteps following you at night.
In Requiem from the Darkness (ep.1) "beto-beto-san" is said by Momosuke when he hears splashing water sounding like footsteps, later he recites a charm to make it go away.
A yōkai tries to frighten Ren with Beto-beto in Kon Kon Kokon (v.1 p.106), no such luck.
Koge-Donbo. Kon Kon Kokon v.1 p.210
Betty (aircraft) 一式陸上攻撃機 Isshikirikujōkōgekiki (The Anime Companion 2 p.9)
Mikesh, Robert C. Japanese Aircraft p.35, 171

BID RIGGING see: dangō (collusive bidding, bid rigging)

BIDDING CONSPIRACY see: dangō (collusive bidding, bid rigging)

bideo gēmu (video games) ビデオゲーム
Video games. It was Atari, an American company with a Japanese name, that created Pong the first video game. The Japanese caught on quickly and released a large number of arcade games such as 'Space Invaders and "Pacman' that were successful on both sides of the Pacific and worldwide. From arcade games the companies quickly hit the market for TV games (terebi gēmu) and computer games.
Anime and Manga:
Video games show up again and again in Genshiken
In the third interview during the 1985 Zoku (More) or second part of Otaku no Video the game shown is Dennō Gakuen the first PC game GAINAX released.
Kosaku plays an arcade game in One Pound Gospel.
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.1673

BIG HEAD STATUE see: Moyai-zo (moyai statue)

BIG SIGHT see: Tōkyō Kokusai Tenjijō (Tōkyō International Exhibition Center aka Tōkyō Big Sight)

BIG SISTER see: onēsama (big sister)

bijinga (beauty picture) 美人画 OLD FORM: 美人畫
An artistic genre consisting of portraits of beautiful youths and, usually, beautiful women, examples of works with this subject go back to the Nara Period. While it includes any medium it is most famous as one of the major genres of ukiyo-e prints. High ranking prostitutes were often the subject of such works, adding an element of the exotic to the genre. Other women commonly depicted included common prostitutes, beautiful shop owners and waitresses. Some woodblock print designers produced mainly bijinga, such artists include Kitagawa Utamaro, Katsukawa Shunchō, Keisai Eisen, Yanagawa Shigenobu, and Utagawa Sadakage. Restrictions on images of prostitutes and geisha (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.33) during the Tenpō Reforms resulted in artists revitalizing the genre with images of women from history and literature as well as ordinary women. Bijinga continued to sell in the Meiji (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.81) and Taishō (The Anime Companion 2 p.95) Periods in transformed styles reflecting the changing times.
Bijinga, translated as "beauty portraits," is said by Meow as she looks at a display at a print shop in Tsukikage Ran (ep.5).
In Samurai Champloo (ep.5) Hishikawa Moronobu has Fuu pose for him, at the end of the episode we see the bijinga woodblock print that has resulted.
Guth, Christine. Art of Edo Japan p.107.
The Hotei Encyclopedia of Japanese Woodblock Prints p.83-84, 85-86, 198, 201, 257.
Naito Akira. Edo: The City That Became Tokyo p.165.
Uhlenbeck, Chris and Margarita Winkel. Japanese Erotic Fantasies p.115, 124, 164, 178, 182.

BIKERS see: bōsōzoku (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.14)

bimbōgami (god of poverty) 貧乏神
A kami (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.59) of poverty. This type of kami is first mentioned in literature of the Edo Period (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.25). The bimbōgami causes poverty for the home it is in. The ritual kami-okuri, sending off the kami, is used as an exorcism to get rid of it. When depicted this kami is skinny, pale and often holding a torn fan. The term can also be used to refer to a person who is always unlucky and poor.
Marller calls up the god of poverty Senbei from a, ramune (The Anime Companion 2 p.72) bottle to cause trouble for Keiichi in the Ah! My Goddess TV series (ep.16)
A bimbōgami causes misfortune for the entire area in Kami Chu! (ep.3)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.108

BIRD FAIR see: tori no ichi (The Anime Companion 2 p.106)

BIRD RATTLES see: naruko

bīru (beer) ビール (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10)
Vardaman, James M. and Michiko Sakaki Vardaman Japan From A to Z p.16
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.57, 789, 1315
Condon, Jack and Camy Condon. The Simple Pleasures of Japan p.40
Bishamon 毘沙門 [or Bishamonten 毘沙門天] (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.11)
Joya, Mock. Mock Joya's Things Japanese p.465
biwa 琵琶 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.11)
A Look Into Tokyo p.47
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.110
Outlook on Japan p.50
biwa hōshi ("lute priest") 琵琶法師 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.11)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.110
Who's Who of Japan p.37
Biwako (Lake Biwa) 琵琶湖 (The Anime Companion 2 p.10)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.111

BL see: Boys Love ボーイズ ラブ

BLACK BEANS see: kuromame (black soybeans)

BLACK FACE GIRLS see: ganguro (black face)

BLACK SHIPS see: Perry, Matthew Calbraith (The Anime Companion 2 p.71)

BLACK SOY BEANS see: kuromame (black soybeans)

BLACK SUGAR CANDY see: kuroame

BLACK TEETH, DITCH OF see: Ohaguro-dobu (Ditch of Black Teeth)

BLACKENED TEETH see: ohaguro

BLANQUILLO see: amadai (The Anime Companion 2 p.5)

BLIND FEMALE SINGERS see: goze (blind female singers)

BLIND MINSTRELS see biwa hōshi ("lute priest") (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.11)

BLINDING POWDER see: metsubushi (sight remover)

BLINDS see: sudare (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.126)

BLOCKING see: uke (receiver, blocking, bottom)

BLOOD SEAL see: keppan (blood seal)

BLOOD TYPE see: ketsueki-gata (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.67)

BLOOMER-SAILOR SHOP see: buruseara shopu

BLOOMERS see: burūmā (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.15)

BLOWFISH see: fugu (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.29)

BOAR see: inoshishi (The Anime Companion 2 p.32)

BOAR MEAT HOTPOT see: botan-nabe (boar meat hotpot)

BOAT DUMPLING see: funa manjū

BOBBING COW OR OX TOY see: akabeko (The Anime Companion 2 p.4)

BODHISATTVA see: bosatsu (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.13)

BODHISATTVA OF THE FUTURE see: Miroku (Maitreya)


BODII KONSHASU see: bodikon (body con)

bodikon (body con) ボヂイコン
The Japanese contraction of the English phrase "body conscious". This is a fashion style emphasizing tight revealing clothing on slender bodies which began in the 1990s and has a popularity with college girls and OL (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.100).
Anime and Manga:
In GTO: Great Teacher Onizuka (v.5 ch.33 and ep.10) Eikichi makes a sand sculpture of a dancer from Juliana's Tokyo, in a bodikon outfit.
A college girl, who was chosen as "Miss Body Con", wants to hire City Hunter to get the stalker who is following her, a stalker who wears a t-shirt and jacket, City Hunter 3 (ep.12).
In F3: Frantic Frustrated and Female (ep.3) a medium shows up in a bodikon outfit, subtitled as "really cheap and slutty outfits" when she refers to it.
Miller, Laura & Jan Bardsley (eds). Bad Girls of Japan p.149
Kamiya Taeko. Tuttle New Dictionary of Loanwords in Japanese p.39

BODKIN see: kogai (hairpin)

BODY CON see: bodikon (body con)

BODY CONSCIOUS see: bodikon (body con)

bokken (wooden sword) 木剣 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.12)
Frederic, Louis. Dictionary of the Martial Arts p.15
Draeger, Donn F. Classical Budo p.56-57

BOKUTŌ see: bokken (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.12)

bōkū-zukin (anti-air raid hood) 防空頭巾
Anti-air raid hood. A type of cloth hood developed in W.W.II to provide some protection for the head during air raids.
These are seen in the firebombing scenes in Grave of the Fireflies and Millennium Actress.
Yamaguchi Momoo, Kojima Setsuko. A Cultural Dictionary of Japan p.136
Bon 盆 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.12)
Festivals of Japan p.98-99
Basic Terms of Shintō (1958) p.3
Japanese Family and Culture p.90-
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.113
Vardaman, James M. and Michiko Sakaki Vardaman Japan From A to Z p.18
Must-See in Kyōto p.176
Outlook on Japan p.104

BON DANCES see: Bon odori (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.13)

Bon odori 盆踊り (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.13)
Festivals of Japan p.172
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.113
Outlook on Japan p.105
bōnen-kai ("forget the year party") 忘年会
Literally "forget the year party", often translated as New Year party or year end party. These are celebrations thrown in mid to late December as the new year approaches. A bōnen-kai is a festive event usually with food, drinking, singing and a general release of stress and tension. It is considered a time to forgive grievances and to put aside unpleasant memories of the year. This helps to prepare to start the new year with a good state of mind. It is common for businesses to have such parties organized by each section in larger companies.
"New Year party" mentioned by Goto as he eats at the yatai (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.147) in Patlabor The New Files (ep 1)
Lum is the organizer (see: kanji, The Anime Companion 2 p.40)) for the class's year end party in Urusei Yatsura TV (ep.54 story 77 "Big Year End Party That Lum Organized") and of course it is as weird as one would expect.
Brandon, Reiko Mochinaga & Barbara B. Stephan. Spirit and Symbol: The Japanese New Year p.117
Illustrated Salaryman in Japan p.102
Yamaguchi Momoo, Kojima Setsuko. A Cultural Dictionary of Japan p.170

BONFIRE see: okuribi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.100)

BONITO, DRIED see: katsuobushi (The Anime Companion 2 p.43)

BONITO, DRIED SHAVED see: kezuribushi (The Anime Companion 2 p.45)

bonsai 盆栽 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.13)
A Look Into Japan p.36-37
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.113-116
Joya, Mock. Mock Joya's Things Japanese p.391; p.408
Outlook on Japan p.161
bonshō (Temple bell) 梵鐘 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.13)
A Look Into Japan p.29

BONUS see: shōyo (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.124)

BONZE see: bōzu (Buddhist priest or monk)

BOOK RENTAL SHOPS see: kashihonya (book rental shops)

BOOK VOLUME see: tankōbon (a separate book volume)


BORDER GUARD see: sakimori (border guard)

BŌRYOKUDAN see: yakuza (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.146)

bosatsu 菩薩 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.13)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.112
Boshi Kenkō Techō (Maternal and Child Health Handbook) 母子健康手帳
A book provided at local government offices for pregnant women. The books are used to record data on the pregnancy, birth and child's growth. Originally these were distributed by the Ministry of Health and Welfare (see: Kōseishō, The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.74) in 1947 as the Boshi Techō (Handbook of Mothers and Children). The Law of Maternal and Child Health of 1966 defined the Boshi Kenkō Techō (Maternal and Child Health Handbook) increasing the emphasis on health. Starting in 1991 Boshi Kenkō Techō are provided locally on the registration of the pregnancy. Information is not only added by the mother but also by healthcare workers when the parents bring in the child for medical care and checkups. Such handbooks are now in use in many countries and in some US states, such as Utah.
On his way home with Rin Daikochi looks at her "Mother Child Health Record Book" in Bunny Drop (v.1 p.35).
Illustrated Japanese Family & Culture p.19
Nakamura Yasuhide. "Maternal and Child Health Handbook in Japan" Japan Medical Association Journal Vol.53, Nos.1–6, 2010 p.259-265

BOSHI-TECHŌ see: Boshi Kenkō Techō (Maternal and Child Health Handbook)

BOSHIN CIVIL WAR see: Boshin Sensō (The Anime Companion 2 p.10)

Boshin Sensō (Boshin Civil War) 戊辰戦争 OLD FORM 戊辰戰爭 (The Anime Companion 2 p.10)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.117
bōsōzoku (gang) 暴走族 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.14)
Parker, L. Craig. The Japanese Police System Today p.144
Sato, Ikuya. Kamikaze biker

BOSS, YAKUZA see: oyabun - kobun (parent role - child role)

Boss Coffee ボス コーヒー (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.14)
(Researched at local stores in the San Francisco Bay Area)

BOTAN MOCHI see: ohagi (The Anime Companion 2 p.66)

botan-nabe (boar meat hotpot) 牡丹鍋 or ぼたん鍋
Wild boar (see: inoshishi, The Anime Companion 2 p.32) meat is sometimes referred to by the euphemism of botan (peony) in Japan. A botan-nabe is thin sliced boar meat cooked as a nabemono (The Anime Companion 2 p.59). Commonly the meat is cooked in a broth with miso (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.84), sugar, sake (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.109) and mirin. Some of the other ingredients often used include tofu (The Anime Companion 2 p.100), daikon (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.21), gobo (The Anime Companion 2 p.23), carrot (see: ninjin (The Anime Companion 2 p.63), mushrooms and hakusai (Chinese cabbage). The traditional season for this winter dish is November - March, however some places serve it at other times of the year using domesticated boar meat.
In episode 3 of Ghost Slayers Ayashi Yuki and Outa have botan-nabe in a yamakujira (mountain whale) shop. Yuki explains that given the season there may also be deer (see: shika (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.117), horse, or cow in the pot.
Gluck, Jay, Sumi Gluck and Garet Gluck. Japan Inside Out p.521, 618.
Hosking, Richard. A Dictionary of Japanese Food p.29.
Illustrated Eating in Japan p.118.
Japan's Tasty Secrets p.45.
Vardaman, James M. and Michiko Sakaki Vardaman. Japan From A to Z p.25

BOTARGO see: karasumi (botargo)

botoru kiipu (bottle Keep) ボトルキープ
Bottle Keep is a service offered by many bars in Japan where a customer, or company, can buy a bottle of whisky and the bar will keep it on hand for for their use. Some elite clubs require such a purchase at a considerable mark up as part of establishing membership. The bottle then is marked with a name or number to identify it as belonging a particular customer. This encourages customers to return and the bar not only makes money on the initial sale of the bottle but on other items consumed in later visits.
In Kaze no Yojimbo (ep.2) and GunBuster 2 (ep.1) bottles with special labels hung around their necks are visible in bars.
In the second volume of Old Boy (p.177) Tsukamoto comments that in Gōruden Gai (Golden Gai) "Customers' bottles are all you can drink" and later we see a customer set up a bottle keep (v.4 p.82). In this manga the name is written directly on the bottle label.
Allison, Anne. Nightwork p.1
De Mente, Boye Lafayette. Bachelor's Japan p.154
Louis, Lisa. Butterflies of the Night p.31
bottakuriten (rip off club) ぼったくり店
A club that deceptively lures customers in and then pads the tab. One method is for a hostess (hosutesu; The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.47) to order extra snacks that come with a hefty price. Intimidation by tough looking staff is sometimes used to back up the bill.
Luring the unsuspecting customer in with a cutie then substituting another girl who is not so cute and the scam for charging extra for snacks is in What’s Michael? : A Hard Day's Life (p.54)
Sinclair, Joan. Pink Box: Inside Japan’s Sex Clubs p.186

BOTTLE KEEP see: botoru kiipu (bottle Keep)

neko (queer slang)
uke (receiver, blocking, bottom)

BOTTOMLESS WAITRESSES see: no-pan (no panty)

BOUNDARY ROPE see: shimenawa (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.118)

BOW STRING TWANGING see: meigen (resounding bowstrings)

BOWING see: ojigi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.98)

BOWLS see:

chawan (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.18)

donburi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.24)

BOX FOR SHAVING BONITO see: katsuobushibako (box for shaving bonito)

BOX LUNCH see: bentō (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.10)

BOY see: shōnen (boy)

BOY'S COMING-OF-AGE CEREMONY see: genpuku (boy’s coming of age ceremony) (The Anime Companion 2 p.22)

BOY'S DAY see: Kodomo-no-Hi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.72)

BOY'S FESTIVAL see: Kodomo-no-Hi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.72)

BOY'S LOVE see also: shōnen ai (boy's love)

Boys Love ボーイズ ラブ
Boys Love manga (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.80) refers to male male romance stories written by women for women. The genre goes back to the early 1970s, when it was called "shōnen ai". Stories were often set in European or other exotic settings with young adolescent characters. Contrast this with modern Boys Love manga which is often set in Japan and with mature characters. By the late 1990s the Boys Love market saw each month 9 literary magazines, 12 manga magazines (such as the famous Comic June ) and roughly 30 paperbacks being published, at an estimated total of 1,275,000 sales. The stories can range from fairly innocent romance where intimate physical action is implicit rather than shown to very explicit sexual tales with intimacy on the page. Boys Love manga is not to be confused with yaoi (The Anime Companion 2 p.116) as that genre is a dōjinshi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.23) fan product, however in the English speaking world the term yaoi has long been used to describe Boys Love manga and anime. Boys Love, the English term is used in Japan, is also often abbreviated to BL in both Japan and by English speakers.
In volume six of Genshiken there is a section at the end of short dōjinshi by several well known mangaka (manga artist). In one by Ninomiya Hikaru (p.192-193) Saki-chan is looking at some manga, which she calls Boys Love, Ohno corrects her saying she is actually reading yaoi, then Ohno and Ogiue proceed to discuss some of the finer point of yaoi.
In chapter four of the first volume of Fujoshi Rumi Asai tells Matsui that she has been reading to much BL manga when she makes a comment about anal sex in front of two male classmates.
Galbraith, Patrick. The Otaku Encyclopedia p.38
Mark McLelland. "Why Are Japanese Girls’ Comics full of Boys Bonking?" Refractory a Journal of Entertainment Media Volume 10, 2006/2007 Dec 4, 2006
Thompson, Jason. Manga The Complete Guide 413-416

fujoshi (rotten woman)
fudanshi (rotten man) 腐男子

BOY'S MANGA see: shōnenshi

bōzu (Buddhist priest or monk) 坊主 or 房主
A Buddhist priest, or a temple head priest. Originally the term referred only to high ranking priests but later came to refer to any priest, monk or person directly related to a Buddhist temple (see: jiin; The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.53).
Anime and Manga:
Perhaps the most famous Buddhist priest in anime and manga is Cherry from Urusei Yatsura.
Not all priests are virtuous in Growing Up (Takekurabe) we see a priest who drinks sake and eats eel, violations of rules against drinking and eating animals priests are supposed to obey.
Inagaki, Hisao. A Dictionary of Japanese Buddhist Terms p.17
Otsuki Hiroshi & Bradley Grindstaff. Cultural Keys p.15

BRACKEN see: warabi (The Anime Companion 2 p.113)

BRAIN DEATH see: zōki ishioku (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.150)

hibachi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.44)
shichirin (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.117)

BREAD CRUMBS see: panko (The Anime Companion 2 p.70)

BREAKFAST see: chōshoku (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.20)

BREAST-URBATION see: paizuri (tit job)

BREWMASTER see: tōji (sake master brewer)

BRIDE'S HEADDRESS see: tsunokakushi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.141)


BROILED EEL OR FISH see: kabayaki (charcoal broiled fish)

BRONZE MIRROR see: seidōkyō (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.112)

BROWN BAG SUSHI see: inarizushi

BROWN SUGAR CANDY see: kuroame

BUCKETS STACKED ON THE STREET see: tensui-oke (rainwater buckets)




BUDDHA OF THE FUTURE see: Miroku (Maitreya)

BUDDHISM see: Bukkyō (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.15)

BUDDHIST PRIEST OR MONK see: bōzu (Buddhist priest or monk)

BUDDHIST FAMILY ALTAR see: butsudan (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.16)

BUDDHIST MEMORIAL ALTAR see: butsudan (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.16)

BUDDHIST ROSARY see: juzu (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.57)

BUDDHIST TEMPLE BELL see: bonshō (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.13)

BUDDHIST TEMPLES see: jiin (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.53)

Budōkan 武道館 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.14)
A Look Into Tokyo p.92
bugaku 舞楽 OLD FORM 舞樂 (The Anime Companion 2 p.10)
Ortolani, Benito The Japanese Theatre p.39-53
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.437
bugyō (magistrate, commissioner) 奉行
Administrative officials. Originating in the Heian Period (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.44) as temporary appointments for ceremonial functions at the Imperial Court. It was Minamoto no Yoritomo who first appointed bugyō to formally oversee administrative functions. This continuted to be the case in the Muromachi Period (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.90). Toyotomi Hideyoshi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.140) appointed a special group of five called the gobugyō for policies while continuing to have lower ranking bugyō for special projects. In the Edo Period (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.25) bugyō became mid level administrators with clearly defined duties and tasks. Major examples include the jisha bugyō for temples and shrines, the Edo machi bugyō for city administration and the kanjō bugyō for finance. The office of bugyō ended with the beginning of the Meiji Period (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.81).
Hattori Hanzō wonders which bugyō from Okazaki has come in Path of the Assassin (v.1 p.132)
The Nagasaki bugyō inspects a ship in Lone Wolf and Cub (v.22 p.85) and later (v.26 p.16) false charges against a construction bugyō are mentioned at a meeting of conspirators.
In Samurai Executioner (v.1 p.12) the young Yoshitsugu, later to be the third Yamada Asaemon, is introduced to Nishiyama Sōsaemon the koshimono-bugyō.
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.138
Yamaguchi Momoo, Kojima Setsuko. Cultural Dictionary of Japan p.278
Bukkyō (Buddhism) 仏教 OLD FORM 佛敎 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.15)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.124

BULLET TRAIN see: shinkansen (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.120)

bunkasai (cultural festival) 文化祭
A cultural festival held at colleges, universities and high schools each year sometime around November. The entire school participates and parents and friends also attend to watch. Each homeroom and club will have its own project with exhibitions, performances or fund raising activities such as selling food. Bunkasai are common in works set in schools.
While the phrase "May festival" is in the subtitles in the second animation sequence of part one of Otaku no Video listen carefully and you will hear bunkasai said.
In Urusei Yatsura Movie 2 Beautiful Dreamer plenty of odd projects and props are being set up, including the main characters' class project being "The Third Reich Decadent Coffee Shop".
In GokuSen (ep 9) we see the class set up a hosuto kurabu (host club) as a way of raising money.
Pictorial Encyclopedia of Japanese Life and Events p.81
Rohlen, Thomas P. Japan's High Schools p. 162, 180
Bunkyō-ku 文京区
Located East of Toshima-ku, South of Kita-ku, West of Taitō-ku (The Anime Companion 2 p.95), and North of both Chiyoda-ku (The Anime Companion 2 p.13) and Shinjuku (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.120). Bunkyō-ku is mainly a residential area which also includes Tokyo University (Tōkyō Daigaku; The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.138). Major parks include; Kōrakuen Garden, Rikugien Garden and Koishikawa Botanical Garden. It is also known for numerous publishers and printers. Other landmarks include Zōshigaya Cemetery, Toshimagaoka Cemetery and Tōkyō Dome (Tōkyō Dōmu; The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.138)
In the "Special Episode" chapter in volume 3 of Rose Hip Zero a group is holding hostages in a publisher's office in Bunkyō-ku, actually next door to Kasumi's apartment.
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.142
Tokyo Metropolitan Atlas p.12-13
Web Site:
文京区 English

BUNKYŌ WARD see: Bunkyō-ku

bunraku 文楽 OLD FORM 文樂 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.15)
Outlook on Japan p.26
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.142

BUNS FILLED WITH SWEET BEAN PASTE see: anpan (The Anime Companion 2 p.5)

bura-bura 不落々々
A yōkai in the form of an old ragged paper lantern (see: chōchin; The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.19) where the torn opening is the mouth on a face, often this is portrayed with large eyes and a tongue sticking out of the opening.
In The Return of Lum: For Better or Curse (p. 71) a bura-bura with one eye and tongue is seen on the title page for chapter 5.
In Dr Slump (v.10 p.172) a bura-bura, also with one eye, and this time arms, one holding the a bura-bura, is part of a larger group of various yōkai.
Yoda Hiroko and Matt Alt. Yokai Attack! The Japanese Monster Survival Guide p.106-109

BURDOCK see: gobō (The Anime Companion 2 p.23)

BUREAU OF DIVINATION see: Ommyōryō (Bureau of Yin and Yang)

BUREAU OF YIN AND YANG see: Ommyōryō (Bureau of Yin and Yang)

BUREAU OR WOODEN CHEST see: tansu (The Anime Companion 2 p.97)

burūma (gym shorts worn by girls) ブルマ (buruma), burumā ブルマー or ブルーマー (burūmā) (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.15)

buruseara shopu (bloomer-sailor shop) ブルセラショプ
A contraction of bloomer-sailor shop as in bloo-sailor. A store that specializes in selling used girl's and women's panties, bras and other undergarments as well as girl's school related clothing such as uniforms, gym outfits, swimsuits or women's uniforms from airlines, restaurants, etc. Often a photo of the former owner is attached to the items which can significantly increase their value. A few shops also sell male articles, sometimes referred to as homoseihin, "homosexual articles". Such shops are often near train stations enabling those with a such fetishes easy access from out of town. One shop in Shibuya-ku (The Anime Companion 2 p.82) is reported as having a system by which the customer gets to see high school girls remove the requested item through a one way mirror.
Rio, desperate to make money to pay off loans, disguises herself as a high school girl to sell her panties at a buruseara shopu in Burn Up W (ep.2). We get to see several types of items on display in this scene.
In Maico 2010 (v.1 ch 7) Masudamasu is desperate for money so she takes Maico to the Blue Sailor Shikida Project to sell Maico's panties.
Hyper Dolls (v.1 ch.5) two thieves sneak into Miyu and Maika's apartment looking for undergarments to sell to "the Blue Sailor Shop". In these two cases "Blue Sailor" seems to be a mis-transliteration of buruseara.
Constantine, Peter. Japan's Sex Trade p.192-96
Sinclair, Joan. Pink Box p.180, 186
Schreiber, Mark editor, Tokyo Confidential p.61
bushi (warrior) 武士 (The Anime Companion 2 p.11)
Farris, William Wayne. Heavenly Warriors p. 6-7
Frederic, Louis. Japan Encyclopedia p.94
Yamakawa Kikue. Women of the Mito Domain p.xi

BUSHI [YŌKAI] see: muchi [yōkai]

bushidō (Way of the Warrior) 武士道 (The Anime Companion 2 p.11)
Frederic, Louis. Japan Encyclopedia p.94
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.148

BUSINESS CARDS see: meishi (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.82)

BUSINESS CREST see: mon (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.89)

BUTCH see: tachi (top/butch)

butsudan (Buddhist altar) 仏壇 OLD FORM 佛壇 (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.16)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.150
Living Japanese Style p.20
Outlook on Japan p.136

BUYING GIFTS ON VACATION see: miyage (The Anime Companion [vol.1] p.86)

Byakkotai (White Tiger Brigade) 白虎隊 (The Anime Companion 2 p.11)
Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia p.152

BYAM-PA see: Miroku (Maitreya)

byōbu (folding screen) びょうぶ or 屏風 OLD FORM 屛風(The Anime Companion 2 p.11)
Morse, Edward. Japanese Homes and Their Surroundings p.178

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Created: October 31, 1998

Updated: September 30, 2012