Maximilian Brumby

I was ten years old when I arrived in the United States. Upon arriving, I was glad to learn that Americans also collected Pokemon cards.  This was exciting because I had spent the last two years trading anything I could get my hands on for Pokemon cards from my Japanese friend, Shun.  They were all in Japanese, and I could not tell what any of them meant, but it didn’t matter at all to me, I was obsessed.

Now that I have lived in the United States for eleven years little has changed.  I’m a Junior at the College of William and Mary, and a film studies major.  Instead of having an obsession with collecting Pokemon cards, I now have an obsession with watching Japanese film.  Nothing is more exciting and entertaining to me then the gorgeous animation of Studio Ghibli, or the extreme sensationalism featured in films like Ichi the Killer and Battle Royal . Maybe it was effective marketing, or maybe I felt a legitimate cultural connection with those Pokemon cards when I was younger, but either way loving those cards as much as I did created an interest in the culture of another country, an interest that I have kept with me for the last decade.

charmander

Japanese version of Chamander Pokemon trading card.

Maybe it was effective marketing, or maybe I felt a legitimate cultural connection with those Pokemon cards when I was younger, but either way loving those cards as much as I did created an interest in the culture of another country, an interest that I have kept with me for the last decade.

Poster for the film "Ichi the Killer"

Poster for the film "Ichi the Killer"