Monday, January 17, 2022

Attack On Titan Exhibition Stomps Into ArtScience Museum From 19 February 2022


Attention, troops! Get your ODM gear ready! The Titans will be arriving at ArtScience Museum from 19 February 2022.

ATTACK ON TITAN (Shingeki no Kyojin) is an insanely popular manga series by Japanese creator Hajime Isayama, with over 100 million copies sold in print. During its 11-year run, readers followed the adventures of a young man named Eren Yeager and his close friends Mikasa Ackerman and Armin Alert, in a dystopian world where humanity is threatened by horrifying, man-eating giants.

The manga was adapted to an anime series produced by Wit Studios, except for the last season, which was taken over by MAPPA. The series is currently streaming on Netflix Singapore, and The Final Season: Part 2 recently premiered on 10 January 2022. New episodes are being released weekly, with reports stating that there will be a total of 12 episodes to wrap up the anime series.

Organised by SpaceLogic, the ATTACK ON TITAN: The Exhibition will feature over 180 pieces of Hajime Isayama's works of art, from his early days of the manga series to the present. This will be the exhibition's South-East Asia debut. Here are what visitors and fans of the franchise can expect from the exhibition:

EXHIBITION HIGHLIGHTS

CHOOSE YOUR JOURNEY

In the world of ATTACK ON TITAN, what remains of the human population is mostly huddled on Paradis Island behind three walls - Wall Rose, Wall Maria and Wall Sheena. These walls were built as a means of protection from the gigantic creatures. As the mystery of the Titans unfolds, the islanders discover that there are also people who live outside the walls.

Visitors will start by choosing to enter the exhibition journey as someone born inside the walls, like the Devils of Paradis Island, or those from the outside, like the Warriors who are intent on destroying the walls. The two factions will explore their different motivations before converging head to head in conflict.


WORLD OF TITANS

There are Titans everywhere in the next zone! Some will appear to be falling from the sky; some will be leaping out from wall panels. In this zone, visitors get to know the characters of ATTACK ON TITAN like Eren, Mikasa, Armin, Levi, Reiner, and Erwin as the soldiers fight for survival, and discover the origins of the Titans.


THE GREAT TITAN THEATRE

Enter the ruins of a battlefield and witness an epic fight between the Attack and Armoured Titan unfold across a 10-metre screen.

This sounds so very whoaaaa. Red Dot Diva can't wait to see this for herself.


HAJIME ISAYAMA'S ARTWORK AND INTERVIEW

For those interested to know more about the creative process of ATTACK ON TITAN, there will be a special interview with creator Hajime Isayama. He will talk about his own personal journey working on the manga over the last decade.

In the exhibition, there will be a display of the creator’s drawings from his earliest manga pages to the present, including early concept drawings and storyoards with dialogue handwritten by Hajime Isayama himself. Through his artwork, visitors will get to explore the diverse perspectives and worldviews of the manga's societies and characters.

What about the merchandise?? Yes! There will be exclusive ATTACK ON TITAN swag that can only be found at the exhibition shop. So, save up $$$ if you want to add some more items to your collecion.

Those who love taking selfies are not forgotten either. You can also pose with your favourite characters and Titans at a photobooth.

ATTACK ON TITAN: The Exhibition looks like an immersive and fun way for fans to celebrate their love for the manga and anime. Red Dot Diva hopes to see some of you in costume when she visits the exhibition!


ATTACK ON TITAN: The Exhibition
Dates: 18 February 2022 to 3 July 2022
Opening Hours: 10 AM to 7 PM
Where: Artscience Museum
Tickets: You can purchase them from 20 January 2022. Each guest is limited to five tickets per purchase.
As far as possible, please pre-book your tickets, as there are covid restrictions and social distancing measures still in place. To buy your tickets and get more information about the exhibition: click here -https://www.marinabaysands.com/museum/exhibitions/attack-on-titan.html





Friday, December 31, 2021

Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return To Hogwarts - A Magical, Moving Reunion For The Cast And Fans


Dumbledore: "After all this time?"
Snape: "Always."

During her wee childhood years, Red Dot Diva was usually found submerged in books of fairy tales and fantasy. She devoured books like candy, and her imagination took her far far away to very British worlds of boarding schools and magical creatures like elves, wizards and centaurs.

When J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter books were published, Red Dot Diva was already a grown woman, but that did not stop her from getting back in touch with her inner child. She was caught up by the detailed lore, and the books' many intriguing characters and creatures. It had been a long time since a book series have managed to capture her wild imagination. However, there was also a familiarity to the Harry Potter books.

Red Dot Diva attended an Anglican-run primary and secondary girls' school with similar terminologies, like prefects and headmistresses. Every schoolgirl was put into a school house - somewhat like the Sorting Hat. In her case, the houses were named after the colours of Red, Blue, Green and Yellow, and she had fond memories of challenges between the different houses where points were given by the teachers. So, when she was watching HBO Max's HARRY POTTER 20TH ANNIVERSARY: RETURN TO HOGWARTS, she felt like she was travelling in a personal time portal too.

In the highly unscripted special celebrating the 20th anniversary of the first film HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER'S STONE, fans will get to see a warm reunion amongst the famous trio Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, as well as the other beloved fan favourite actors like Tom Felton, James Phelps, Oliver Phelps, Alfred Enoch, Matthew Lewis, and Evanna Lynch. The cinematic franchise also boasted of a cast that included Britain's acting royalty - names like Ralph Fiennes, Helen Bonham Carter, Gary Oldman, Jason Isaacs, and Mark Williams. In the case of veteran actor Robbie Coltrane, who was Hagrid, the towering, empathetic gamekeeper of Hogwarts, he has watched the young actors grow up on set since the first Harry Potter movie.

When the first film was made, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson were just kids. It is amazing how much they have gone through together and individually, as well as the lasting impact that they experienced while growing up in a unique environment where the lines between work and friendship were blurred for over a decade.

In their interviews and intimate conversations, Red Dot Diva could feel that there is a genuine atmosphere of love and care that the cast and directors had for each other. There are interesting anecdotes and revelations as the actors and directors reminisce about their own joys, struggles and awkward moments on each of the film's sets, including how uncomfortable Emma felt when they had to film Ron's and Hermione's first kiss, and how committed Jason Isaacs blew hot and cold when acting as the cruel Lucas Malfoy.

Of course, no one can ever forget the extraordinary Alan Rickman, who took on the role of Severus Snape for all of the Harry Potter films. He was mentioned many times during the reunion, and was given a lovely tribute by his close friend, Ralph Fiennes. Sadly, many involved in the film, like Richard Harris and Helen McCrory, have passed on, and there was a short segment in memory of all of them.

On a separate note, J.K. Rowling, the polarising creator of the world of Harry Potter, does not appear in the reunion. Instead, past recorded footage of her interviews are used in the show.

HARRY POTTER 20TH ANNIVERSARY: RETURN TO HOGWARTS is not just a reunion special, it is a wonderfully crafted and edited documentary. By making use of carefully selected behind the scenes, actual film clips and the cast's interactions, the audience is guided on the 10-year journey that the films' actors and crew took together. There is such a special bond between the Harry Potter franchise, the actors and the fans. When Red Dot Diva watched the media screener, it also brought back memories of the pain and the joy that she had personally experienced all those years. It was all very sentimental, and by the end of it, most of the actors (even Daniel Radcliffe) were teary. And so was Red Dot Diva.

HARRY POTTER 20TH ANNIVERSARY: RETURN TO HOGWARTS will premiere exclusively in Asia on HBO GO, on Saturday, January 1, 2022. If you want to refresh your memory and get all the feels again, all eight Harry Potter films are available on HBO GO before the special begins streaming. Or, you can get ready for the magical event by watching the quiz show HARRY POTTER: HOGWARTS TOURNAMENT OF HOUSES hosted by Helen Mirren.





ADDED:

Did you notice the SG represent in the anniversary special? In the red and white striped top on the right is Kenny Chan, the well known (now retired) director of the local Kinokuniya book stores, at a Harry Potter event with a bunch of excited fans. Were you one of the fans in the fleeting segment?





Tuesday, December 28, 2021

The Witcher Season 2: The Relationships, The Changes, Oh My! *Spoilers* (by Atty)


In December 2019, THE WITCHER TV series premiered on Netflix. The adaptation, based on Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski's book series of the same name, boasts of the brawny and handsome Henry Cavill as the lead character Gerald the Witcher. Fans have been patiently waiting two years for a second season, which was partially delayed due to the pandemic. Season 2 has finally arrived and all episodes are currently available for your bingeing pleasure.

Red Dot Diva's geek gal pal Atty is a huge fan of Henry Cavill. She was lucky enough to win a Netflix contest where a bunch of fans got to meet with the celebrity online. She also managed to get into the official virtual screening party organized by New York Comic Con and Netflix, and watched The Witcher Season 2's first episode together with Henry Cavill and other fans. So, when Atty gives her thoughts about The Witcher's latest season, she gets on point. Check it out below!

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The good, the bad, and the Leshy.

The world of THE WITCHER is about many things—found family, great fights against monsters (both the human and non-human kind), political intrigue, and a somewhat confusing timeline. At least, the first season had the confusing timeline bit.

Having a convoluted timeline in the first season made it possible for the show to introduce the main characters and how their lives would eventually interweave. This second season’s timeline was much more streamlined, and it started off strong with an episode adapted from the Witcher short story, ‘A Grain of Truth‘. With her wide-eyed stare, Agnes Bjorn, the actress portraying the vampiric Bruxa, Vereena, was brilliant in bringing a sense of otherworldliness to the character. Game of Thrones’ Kristofer Hivju as Nivellan, the aristocrat-turned-beast, brought an affable charm to the table. Here’s the thing I loved most about the first episode (TRIGGER WARNING for content ahead!):

Nivellan mentions he was cursed because he robbed a priestess’s temple. We soon find out that he glossed over a huge fact—he was cursed because he raped the priestess. After losing Vereena (which breaks his curse), he wants Geralt (Henry Cavill) to give him a swift death because hey, he has nothing left to live for. Instead of doing as requested, Geralt leads Ciri (Freya Allan) away, advising Nivellan that if he wants to end things, he should find a way to do it himself. It’s different from the book, where Nivellan doesn’t pay for the consequences of his actions. The show, thankfully, has updated this.

Later episodes introduced us to other players in the universe—we get to see more elves, meet Geralt’s Witcher brethren and even get a glimpse of The Wraiths of Mörhogg, or The Wild Hunt. However, in addition to the change mentioned previously, there are two changes/additions made that I’d like to highlight.


Eskel

In the books and games, the Witcher Eskel is Geralt’s close friend who possesses a calm demeanour. In the show, Eskel (Basil Eidenbenz) clashes with Geralt and even brings in sex workers from the village to the Witcher stronghold, Kaer Morhen. How they managed to trek to a supposed hidden fortress, we’ll never know. We soon find out that he’s not exactly himself and is instead turning into a Leshen—a monster that he had gone hunting and got infected by. Ultimately, Geralt has to kill him. This, of course, doesn’t happen in the source material. Why I think this happened was so that there’s an emotional response from Geralt—we see from a flashback that Geralt indeed had a good relationship with Eskel.

[Showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich explains why this had to happen in The Witcher: UnlockedWATCH HERE.]


Voleth Meir

Appearing as an old hag locked away in a cottage with legs (think Baba Yaga!), Voleth Meir, or The Deathless Mother, meets Yennefer (Anya Chalotra), Fringilla (Mimî M. Khayisa) and Francesca (Mecia Simson) and promises to fulfil whatever they need—in exchange for something, of course. Voleth Meir is a character that has been created specifically for the show as a means to quickly bring Ciri’s significance to light.


Ultimately, the relationships in THE WITCHER were the strongest parts of the show. This is a story about found family after all! The ones that stood out were:

  • The father/daughter dynamics of Geralt and Ciri.
  • Jaskier and Yennefer’s cautious friendship (Absolutely loved the way Yennefer rescued him from being tortured.)
  • The waxing and waning of Yennefer and Geralt’s relationship (Life’s complicated but honestly, Yenn… it does help to communicate!)


Freya Allan’s acting has also vastly improved from the first season. To be fair, she wasn’t given enough then, but this season, she gave Ciri the fire, the vulnerability and the maturity befitting the Lion Cub of Cintra. And while the first season was used to set up the characters, season two felt like it was a launching pad into season three where the bigger plotline would be that everyone is going after Ciri and her precious Elder Blood. Of course, Geralt and Yennefer (hopefully!) would be there to help and protect her.

THE WITCHER Season 2 is now streaming on Netflix.

Watch the trailer here:





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Pic credits: Netflix

Find out more about Atty at https://thisisatiqah.wordpress.com



Sunday, December 19, 2021

Spider-Man: No Way Home Is A Fun Treat For Spidey Fans Young and Old


Sony Pictures' SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME, with the adorable puppyish Tom Holland back as Peter Parker/ Spider-Man, is the best comic book movie of the year. This is not counting ZACK SNYDER'S JUSTICE LEAGUE, which was more of a one-off special event than a blockbuster movie release. SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME is a load of fun, and an absolute treat for Spidey fans of all ages.

The movie continues immediately from SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME'S ending. Just before supervillain Mysterio died, he was able to throw Peter Parker's life into chaos by revealing Spidey's true identity as well as framing him for murder. As The Daily Bugle's relentless journalist J. Jonah Jameson (JK Simmons) and the authorities go after Peter, all whom he loves - Aunt May (Marisa Tomei), his girlfriend MJ (Zendaya) and bestie Ned (Jacob Batalon) - are bearing the consequences of his newfound notoriety. He naively seeks Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) for help, requesting that the wizard cast a spell to make the world forget that Peter Parker is Spider-Man. Unfortunately, the powerful spell got bungled, and all goes awry.

The different universes start colliding, and villains from the other movie Spider-verses begin dropping into this one. For those who have watched the Spider-Man movies from the Sam Raimi days to those directed by Marc Webb, this means seeing Willem Dafoe's menacing Green Goblin, Alfred Molina as Doc Orc and a hungrier version of Jamie Foxx's Electro. With the multiverse causing major reality-bending problems, Peter Parker has to make certain moral decisions, despite suffering personal setbacks and heartbreaks.

When the NO WAY HOME'S trailers were out, Red Dot Diva was getting concerned that, with so many Spidey villains and characters coming into play, the movie might turn out to be an epic mess. It was either that, or the movie might be a sheer nostalgia grab for the Gen X-ers, like a number of releases this year. Instead, she was relieved and delighted to find that NO WAY HOME is a very enjoyable and well-crafted movie, with just the right amount of humour, action and personal character moments.

The brilliant screenplay by writers Erik Sommers and Chris McKenna was cleverly delivered, offering the older Spider-Man fans with a wink and a nod, but without the expositions that would bore more recent fans watching the film. It also never forgets to tell the story of Peter Parker and the life lessons that he will learn as he continues on his adventures.

Tom Holland gave his all in this film, going through the gamut of emotions from happiness, grief, anger and acceptance as Peter Parker. He manages to pull you in on Pete's emotional rollercoaster ride, and reminds us of all the things our favourite superhero Spider-Man embodies. Red Dot Diva ardently wishes that Tom Holland will play Peter Parker/ Spidey for a couple more films.

The other superb moments are those involving the supervillains, especially when Willem Dafoe delivers his scariest best as Green Goblin. There is a segment in the middle of the movie which will give Filipino fans a feeling of elation, again proving that representation matters. Other Spidey multiverse moments are inspiring too, with most of the characters having their own hopeful resolution by the end of the movie.

Of course, the movie has its weak points. Red Dot Diva thought that both Aunty May and MJ could been given more things to do on screen. Red Dot Diva feels that Zendaya has so much screen presence, and it was a waste that the young actor did not have a more important role to play in this movie, other than being a love interest. The decisions made about the villains in the story might be open for debate amongst movie goers, especially if you are cynic. However, on this point, Red Dot Diva acknowledges that it is after all, a Spider-Man movie. And a Spider-Man movie carries with it a great responsibility of being positive, heartwarming and triumphant.

For more nerdgasm and yammering about what Red Dot Diva thought of SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME, check out the latest Live With Red Dot Diva session with guests Wayne Rée (local writer/ co-founder of Ghost Maps) and Jedd Jong (movie reviewer). The livestream was broadcasted on the RDD Facebook Page, as well as her Youtube channel.





Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Diva's Interview With Artist Sean Lam - Geungsi Is About Human Emotion and Subconsciousness

After decades of working in various high profile projects overseas like the two-part graphic novel adaption of New York Times bestselling Larry Niven's sci-fi novel RINGWORLD, and the mega 40-page manga IT TAKES A WIZARD by Thomas R. Hart, local artist Sean Lam has been returning back to his roots. His self-published graphic novel GEUNGSI Vol 1: Geungsi in the House was launched recently during the National Library Board's annual Night at the Library event, together with an art exhibition that showcased the creative evolution of the comic.

GEUNGSI (the Cantonese pronunciation of jiangshi, the vampire from Chinese lore) is a horror fantasy tale about Meng, an energetic HK slayer who moves to Singapore, and meets Shaun, a young salaryman. Bad news for Shaun though. He has been turned into a geungsi by a mystery woman named Alice. Can Meng and Shaun be friends? Or will they end up as frenemies and end up fighting the unexpected dangers of the underworld? If you are interested in checking out this new horror comic based in the streets of Singapore, GEUNGSI is already available at several local bookstores, including GnB Comics, Kinokuniya and Basheer Graphics Books.

To find out more about Sean Lam's thought process in creating GEUNGSI, Red Dot Diva got in touch with him for a short interview.

Red Dot Diva: Hello Sean! Congrats for the launch of GEUNGSI! These have been unusual times with the pandemic dragging on for nearly 2 years. As a creative person, how have you been coping, and what major lessons have you learned from the situation?
Sean Lam: Thank you. Indeed, the pandemic was quite unexpected, but it offered a time for reflection. Especially as an artist, it was an opportunity for me to finally organize my own work during this hiatus. I read a lot of local news, tried to understand more about people and the situations that affected everyone globally. The arising societal issues in the news about what triggered people, provided substantial amount of content for the making of my book GEUNGSI. I felt that the pandemic was handled better here, unlike riots and chaos elsewhere. Perhaps people are compliant here and coping well. It shows a test of resilience.

The situation was very reflective for me to learn about self-care, and to be more mindful of my personal reactions when I interacted with others during the pandemic.


Red Dot Diva: What made you decide to focus your comic book creation efforts back home in Singapore? In your opinion, how much has the local comic book scene changed?
Sean: It was situational, definitely. I mean due to work with my publishers, I have been writing my own story on the side for quite some time, in between projects, and this was often disrupted. Once I came home to Singapore, I was finally able to stay focused and put everything together. I have been away too long to make any comments about the local comic book scene. Before I left Singapore, I only know Wee Tien Beng and Johnny Lau. Now, I am delighted to get to know and meet a lot more local comic artists, since my return.


Red Dot Diva: It seems that South-East Asian horror is having a mini resurgence recently. There is HBO Asia's anthology series FOLKLORE making waves in the film festival circuit, the positive buzz for Malay indie film ROH and Filipino comic adaptation TRESE on Netflix, as well as more local horror comics published recently - some of which feature our favourite ghoulies. Why did you decide on the GEUNGSI for your book, and what makes this particular monster stand out from the rest?
Sean: Frankly, my story concept is not about the supernatural stuff. GEUNGSI pays tribute to the HK Jiangshi films that I used to enjoy in the 90s. When I was overseas, I felt the need to introduce an Asian icon, and it was natural for me to revive the hopping vampire with a new twist. I would love to share this with the rest of the world, by introducing Geungsi in Singapore to my global fans. GEUNGSI focuses on social issues and concerns, which I hope, are expressed out in a fun and engaging way, and yet it is a semiotic representation of human emotion and subconsciousness. The monster part is only a façade, a referent element to depict desires and suppressed emotion.
Red Dot Diva: That is true. Based on my absurdly extensive consumption of horror stories in pop-culture, I do find that the best ones always offer multi-layered perspectives about the human condition.

Red Dot Diva: While writing GEUNGSI, did you seek out any South-East Asian paranormal "experts" (or even mediums, haha) to learn more about the geungsi and other regional supernatural entities?
Sean: I did a lot of reading and research, googled a lot about Geungsi. To be honest, I depended a whole lot of reference from my binge-watching of past HK horror films. The content from those films was the foundation for my story. However, part of it also came from the day-to-day people interactions that I experienced during the pandemic, and still, until now, with people I meet.

Red Dot Diva: Singapore has a mostly urbanized landscape. So, what are your key tips for crafting a scary and dramatic local horror universe?
Sean: Very easy. Create places that you can relate to on a daily basis. When horror strikes close to you, the familiar senses will do its magic. There is no need to be significantly dark and eerie to create scary scenes. It can be just the void deck that you enjoy hanging around so much or even the coffee shop. Anywhere can be scary when one can relate to them easily.
Red Dot Diva: eeeks. That reminds me. I am going to check under my bed before I sleep tonight.

Red Dot Diva: What soundtrack or song do you think is the best accompaniment for the GEUNGSI comic?
Sean: Interesting question. I do listen to a variety of music as I draw, my current preference for GEUNGSI is a Cantonese song (雌雄同體) by Juno Mak. But anything goes, something melodic, don’t have to be metal, but fast-paced tracks help, canto pop song or whatever language.


Red Dot Diva: You will be appearing at THE YUREI x SEANLAM booth at the upcoming SG Toy Con on 17-19 December. How did that collaboration come about, and what can fans expect to get from your booth?
Sean: The Yurei is part of Grimoire of Horror, a media website that focuses solely on Asian horror with over 24,000 followers all over the world on their Facebook page. This exclusive collaboration, which gives us an opportunity to join forces and share the fascination for the undead, was pegged almost immediately after they covered the book review of GEUNGSI in October. I am honoured to represent Singapore as well as Asia’s paranormal and folklore culture on their platform, and also advocate for cultural exchanges through comic media.
Red Dot Diva: It does sound so awesome, and I think it is exciting that other people are getting familiar with our region's supernatural creatures and folklore.


Sean: To mark our collaboration, and as an inauguration for many more projects to come, the exclusive The Yurei x SEANLAM limited-edition merchandise, such as tee shirts and bandanas will be available at the SG ToyCon as a bundle pack on first come, first serve basis only. Some artist print collections and posters will also be on sale. And, I will be in to meet and greet, perhaps to also draw some sketches for my fans. Hope to see you there too.
Red Dot Diva: Can't wait. Hope to see ya soon!

The first Singapore Toy Convention 2021 (SG ToyCon) is happening at the Visual Arts Centre, from 17 to 19 December. Besides The Yurei x SEANLAM booth, there will be many other retailers offering their wares at the event. Check out for more information in my SG ToyCon article here, or click to the event's Facebook Page.



Sunday, December 12, 2021

The Inaugural Singapore Toy Convention (SG ToyCon) Launches 17 - 19 December 2021 At The Visual Arts Centre

Calling all toy collectors and lovers! Just in time for the festive season and your shopping needs, the very first Singapore Toy Convention (SG ToyCon) will be held from 17 to 19 December 2021 at The Visual Arts Centre. The event is jointly organized by local toy retailers Masterpiece Collectibles and Toyz Network, with an aim to bring the toy and model collecting communities together.

From 3 PM on 17 December (Fri), the event is free to attend. Visitors can expect 11 exhibitors at SG ToyCon, who will be launching new releases and a wide ange of collectibles that will appeal to different age groups. Each of the retailers specialize in their own area of collectibles ranging from diecast toy cars, models and miniature figurines. Local comic book creator Sean Lam, in collaboration with The Yurei, will also be bringing his latest horror graphic novel GUENGSI to the convention.

Check out the list of SG ToyCon retailers below:

MASTERPIECE COLLECTIBLES (Scale models, Figurines)
One of the organizers of the toy fair, the retailer specializes in military themed merchandise or heritage figurines from Singapore, emergency vehicles and bus models. There will be 17 new items for sale and preorder, including the 1/64 Subaru Impreza Traffic Marshal Fast Response Car below.



TOYZ NETWORK (Model cars)
Toys Network is the other organizer of the SG ToyCon, with an impressive list of model cars available on their webstore.

You can purchase various vehicle scale replicas and related diorama and accessories from their booth at the fair.

MINIATURE STORIES (Heritage/ Military Miniature Figurines and Vehicles)
You might have seen some of their detailed and lovingly created heritage dioramas on display. Red Dot Diva took some time admiring a few of those at the Kinokuniya flagship store the last time she was there. They make superb backgrounds and props for photographing toys.

Checkout their collection at the convention, including this 1950s Chinatown set below!



THE YUREI X SEANLAM(Comic, Merchandise)
Comic book creator Sean Lam has acquired a fervent fanbase from his decades of work done overseas, but he is making waves back home as well with his latest graphic novel GEUNGSI. In a collaboration with The Yurei, a page dedicated to Asian horror and the macabre, you will be able to grab a copy (or two) of GEUNGSI and other limited edition merchandise, as well as meet Sean at his booth at scheduled timings.

There will also be a Red Dot Diva interview with Sean Lam coming soon. Look out for it!

HAPPIBOX (Miniature figurines, collectibles, blind boxes)
Can't help spending money on all things kawaii? Then get your $$$ ready at Happibox's booth at the fair.

Take a sneak peek of the Chameleon Lizard Series 7 blind box (pic below) which will be available at their booth. They will also be offering other irresistibly cute miniature figurines and collectibles!



DREAM CUSTOMS (Diorama products like mats, Model cars)
If you are looking to build a mini world or two, then head to their booth for items like desktop dioramas and diorama mats.

Their specially crafted Singapore Carpark III Desktop Diorama pictured below is an exclusive item that is included in the SG ToyCon goodie bag when you purchase an Early Access VIP Pass (more details at the end of this article). Don't miss out on it!



TINY (Model cars)
Look out for their 1/110 TINY Singapore MAN A95 double decker which will be available at the event at SGD 19 each.



TIME FOR TOYS (Miniature Figurines & Cars, Action Figures, Dioramas)
Superhero fans of the Marvel and DC universes can snag more items at their booth, where they will be offering 1/6, 1/10, 1/12 action figures as well as 1/18 & 1/64 Cars and Dioramas


AUTOMODELS SCALE & COLLECTIBLES (Model cars, planes and construction equipment)
An exclusive release, the RSAF F-16C (HA3839) replica by Hobby Master will be available for purchase at their booth. Check out this link for a preview.


DISPLAY FOR FUN (Display Cabinets)
What is a precious toy collection without nice glass display cabinets? A range of cabinets designed for showing off your toys will be available at a special discounted rate at Display For Fun's booth.


MAMA'S BRICKS AND TOYS (Lego, Model Cars)
Toy cars and lego sets are great for young budding collectors. Having said that, established toy lovers should be able to find something that they might like at this booth too.


To grab those limited edition and exclusive items before they are sold out, you can purchase the Early-Access VIP Passes (SGD 68) from this link - http://tinyurl.com/sgtoycon2021. With this special pass, you are able to gain access to the toy convention on 17 December, Friday, 1-2 PM and 2-3 PM. Each VIP pass comes with a goodie bag with event exclusive merchandise.



After a long break from geeky in-person events, the upcoming SG ToyCon will be like a breath of fresh air (or as fresh as your face mask allows.). Red Dot Diva is certainly craving some hooman interaction, so she has already made plans to pop by the toy fair this weekend!


Dates: 17 to 19 December 2021 (Fri to Sun)
Times: Please refer to the SG ToyCon banner above.
Venue: The Visual Arts Centre, 10 Penang Road, Dhoby Ghaut Green.

For more information and updates, head to the SG ToyCon Facebook page!

NOTE: Due to Covid-19 safety protocols, the event is opened for vaccinated customers only, and only allow a maximum of 50 people are allowed to enter at any one time.



Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Ultraman Saves The Day At Gardens By The Bay - In Celebration Of 55th Year of Singapore-Japan Diplomatic Relations


A childhood dream came true for many of us with the release of the first episode of a special video by Tsuburaya Productions, where ULTRAMAN makes his heroic appearance in Singapore. There will be 3 episodes, and the short films are part of a collaboration with Singapore Tourism Board (STB) entitled “SingapoReimagine ULTRAMAN. The virtual campaign celebrates the 55th year of formal Singapore-Japan diplomatic relations (code named SJ55), and is set to run for 1.5 years. Coincidentally, the year 2021 is also the 55th birthday of the beloved Japanese tokusatsu superhero!

Don't miss watching Power of Singapore Episode 1” on YouTube, which kicks off in typical old school style with a menacing kaiju who is known as Red King (actually, Red Dot Diva thinks it looks quite cute!) stomping the grounds of Gardens By The Bay, basically doing its thing andscaring the bejesus out of people.

Guess who comes quickly to the rescue? It's OG ULTRAMAN, as he swoops across the bay towards ground zero, past the iconic Marina Bay Sands towers, and comes head to head with Red King.

Of course, ULTRAMAN saves the day, and attracts even more fans who are glad that they can continue wandering around the sprawling futuristic park and take more photos ‘for the Gram’.

But... wait. Something is stalking under the deceivingly calm waters of the Marina Bay. Is that another kaiju? Or is it... a version of our very own Merli??? There are hints at the promo picture released for the first episode (see below). What is your best guess?

The next episode is coming soon, and the next stage seems to also include Changi Airport! Red Dot Diva cannot wait to watch ULTRAMAN keep our island safe again.

You may not understand any of the dialogue as the video is in Japanese, but “Power of Singapore Episode 1” will still lure you back into a cocoon of nostalgia. Watch it here:



The next two episodes are going to be interesting, and you can get some ideas of what's coming up next in the promo pic below!



If you are wishing for a local tokusatsu superhero to emerge, you do not need to look much further. Say hello to SACRED GUARDIAN SINGA, who is always ready to protec and attac. Do support our own superhero by following him on all his social media accounts. He loves receiving all the attention he can get!