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It's 2020. For the first half of the year, the world was laid low by the COVID-19 Pandemic. Like many countries affected by nationwide lockdowns, Japan was affected—and with it, its pop culture, anime and tourism industry. Nearly every public event related to these industries have been shuttered, cancelled and/or delayed. What hot topics, then, can Anime YouTube cover or talk about in these trying times?

Well, if you ask three particular anime YouTubers based in Japan... pretty much anything. And make it cool, funny and educational along the way as well.

Trash Taste, launched in June 2020, is an ongoing podcast series hosted by The Anime Man (Joey Bizinger), Gigguk (Garnt Maneetapho) and CDawgVA (Connor Colquhoun), anime YouTube influencers affiliated with GeeXPlusnote .

Understandably, the show's topics usually launch from the three hosts' unabashed love of anime and Japanese popular culture in general. Nevertheless, despite the seeming simplicity of the show's premise (as well as the hosts' highly self-deprecating, sweary and full-on "degenerate" humor), the conversations can get pretty detailed, profound and full of Reality Subtext. It is helped that the hosts are pretty open about their personal experiences/years of living in Japan, particularly the significant disconnect between Japan's global popular brand and the realities/pressures of living as migrants in a still-quite exclusive society.


Podcast episodes are available on YouTube and Spotify. A separate "highlights" channel from the episodes is also available.

This podcast contains examples of:

  • Accidentally Correct Writing: Their discussion on the works of Satoshi Kon praise how very prescient his commentaries on celebrity and new media social relations became—especially relevant to them as online content creators.
  • Allegedly Free Game: The boys have also weighed in on popular anime-themed/franchise-linked Mobile Phone Games (like Arknights and Fate/Grand Order) in the video games episode (Ep. 8). They somewhat shamefully admit that because of their patronage of them, they are also losing time for other pastimes (including console-based games).note 
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  • Alternate Reality Episode: Garnt discusses (in ever-increasing fandom and lore-consistent complexity) the three alternate routes of Fate/stay night—and by extension the expanding Fate Series (something which he has done before). Joey and Connor, who already have their misgivings with complicated timelines, lost it.
  • At Least I Admit It: Quite possibly the reasoning behind their chosen title for the podcast. While they are seasoned anime viewers, the anime/Japanese popular culture has expanded enough that universal "classics"/"good anime value" has become highly subjective, and their own tastes will very likely offend older and newer members of their fandoms.
  • Berserk Button:
    • In episode 16, when discussing the part Cr1TiKaL (Charlie) did a video where he criticized videogamedunkey for rabid Final Fantasy fans that have taken Dunkey's video too seriously. Then Charlie used the analogy of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, to which Garnt and Connor hits this button when he said that he preferred Part 1 and 2 over Part 3 and 4.
    • As noted in Serious Business section, even Garnt gets mad over food, especially when the topic of meat is brought up.
  • Biting-the-Hand Humour: Sometimes Played for Laughs, especially during the multiple Enforced Plugs in each episode, where it's rare that they don't throw in at least one sarcastic or off-color joke regarding the product and/or do the read in a parodically over-the-top manner. On the other hand, it's sometimes done pretty seriously, especially when they talk about the challenges of being YouTube content creators and when recalling their administrative woes with the platform. They are pretty lighthearted and very kind about their main sponsor Bookwalker though.
  • British Media Tropes: Such tropes/references also tend to color their discussions on film and media, what with Garnt and Connor being UK citizens (and Joey's Australian/Commonwealth background).
  • Broken Pedestal: Garnt becoming an Anituber was partially inspired by Mr. Anime, and he looked up to him as one of the original anime YouTubers. When the latter was arrested for murdering his family, this left Garnt devastated.
  • Call-Back: Very frequently, the podcast will make a reference to a comment or joke from a past episode where relevant. Jokes that get referenced enough times turn into Running Gags or memes.
  • Commonality Connection: The trio's love for anything anime or Japanese culture-related. Some of their favorites or hobbies also overlap.
  • Cool Teacher: Both their first guests (Chris Broad of Abroad In Japan and Kaho Shibuya) worked as English teachers—which also informed their subsequent media careers to some extent. Everyone also notes how teaching English (via Japan's JET Programme) is one of the more accessible ways of finding a job placement if one ever dreams of living/working in Japan.
  • Cosplay: Being currently a cosplayer herself, Kaho Shibuya discusses the positive/creative challenges of engaging in it. The usual issues faced by cosplay models in many anime conventions were also brought up—particularly unwelcome photographers with No Sense of Personal Space or just full-on creeps/perverts. Being con veterans, the three hosts also called out this inappropriate behavior.
  • Critical Dissonance: Sometimes brought up when they discuss how/why certain kinds of anime appeal or don't appeal to a global audience:
    • Their discussion on NisiOIsiN's works highlight how it's surprising that despite its linguistic barriers, Bakemonogatari appeals more than the more mainstream-themed Katanagatari.
    • Humorously, all three are in significant disagreement about the actual quality of School Days.
  • Cultural Cringe:
    • In episode 12, all three state that they don't understand why Americans like their home countries' accents. Connor says 90% of English accents are disgusting, while Joey states the only reason people like Australian accents is because of Chris Hemsworth and that most are just terrible.
    • Connor is pretty adamant of how boring Wales is despite being Welsh. He also doesn't like British food.
  • Culture Clash:
    • Downplayed in episode 12 as Connor and Garnt state they are not really used to how social and friendly Americans are compared to the average British person, but they also state they do like how friendly Americans can be.
    • Episode 14 has them say how drinking isn't as ingrained in American culture compared to British and Australian cultures where nearly everyone drinks.
  • Dark Horse Victory: During the Akihabara shopping challenge, Joey tries to stick to his objectives as much as possible; Connor lucks out and gets a bunch of easy-to-fulfill challenges; and Garnt has a hard time resisting the call of his groin, blows nearly half his money on a sexy figure of Rias, and spends the rest of his shopping spree desperately trying not to go over budget. So of course, he ends up winning when in true Mario Party fashion, the Rias figure scores him a ton of bonus objective points (including "buy a hentai figure" when he finds in the box an alternate chest piece with fully detailed nipples).
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Episode 10 gives us two examples:
    • Downplayed case: The episode highlighted how all three had to deal with "being closeted" about their anime fandom due to it being niche (and their high schools' penchant for fostering bullying and cliques). Connor in particular seems to have had to punch his way through a series of bullies and belligerent classmates.
    • Straighter (and more unfortunate) example: Garnt and Connor had worked with YouTubers who were subsequently found guilty of serious crimes: Mr. Anime and CielStar.
  • Devil's Advocate: Connor has stated on various episodes that he hates podcasts where all the hosts agree on a topic and don't say anything besides agree thus he always takes an opposing position if need be to have an interesting discussion.
  • Digital Piracy Is Evil: Discussed at length in Episode 13, in the aftermath of the shutdown of pirate anime/manga streaming site Kissanime. Despite officially being in business with the anime/manga industry big streamers like Crunchyroll, the hosts (as well as their guest, their producer Meilyne Tran from Bookwalker), they are surprisingly balanced and nuanced in their approach to the topic.
    • On the for-piracy side: they noted (as a Hypocrisy Nod) that most anime/manga fans started out pirating content if it was not readily nor legally available in their country. Therefore, it would be unfair (and a case of elitist gatekeeping) to merely shame those who consume anime and manga via such pirate sites.
    • On the anti-piracy side: ironically consistent with above, their major complaint with Kissanime wasn't its active pirating activities, but more its horrible, ad-infested website interface, as well as trying to break into merchandise production that veered very close to violating fair use and copyright (far more than they already were).
  • Dirty Old Monk: Heavily subverted for Garnt, who had spent a month as a Buddhist monk. While monkhood is not an automatic life-long commitment (i.e. most Thai men participate temporarily for religious/devotional reasons), Garnt also took it as an opportunity to reflect, mentally dexotify, genuinely detach from past attachments (as Buddhism teaches) and reorganize his life plans. This supposedly contributes to his relative chill as a person (when he's not spazzing out over anime of course).
  • Dissonant Serenity: In episode 9, Joey recounted when an earthquake hit when they were in their hotel during AX 2019. He also notes that Connor calmly continued to eat his chicken nuggets as a category 7 hit.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: In Episode 10 as Joey describes his attempts to get one of his high school friends into anime, both Garnt and Connor point out how similar his story sounds to a coming out story. It also doesn't help that apart from getting his friend into classics like Neon Genesis Evangelion and Death Note, he would later rope him into trashier fare like Kiss X Sis—and that friend's younger brother walked in on them watching it.
  • End of an Era: Discussed in Episode 10 with regards to Podtaku and how anime content on YouTube changed after its end, especially with regards to monetization.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Episode 20 reveals even degenerates like Garnt, Joey and Sydney can't get into Eroguro, essentially erotic gorn.
  • Everything Is Big in Texas: In episode 12, they discuss their astonishment at the size of the food portions in America (and especially Texas).
  • Eye Scream:
    • One of Garnt's earliest memories involve him getting stung by a bee in his eyeball. Surprisingly, he did not go blind from that, but it did give him a phobia of bees.
    • Across episode 20, Joey brings up "eye penetration" in reference to one of Sydney's videos where she talked about unusual orifices being used in hentai.
  • Fan Dumb: The second half of episode 16 is about various fandoms that have annoyed the three of them due to the outbursts of their more extreme factions. They talk especially of the fandoms of Dragon Ball, My Hero Academia, and JoJo's Bizarre Adventure.
  • Follow the Leader: They grapple with the effects of this trope on the light novel industry in episode 14. Connor tries to describe the premise of Trinity Seven, but his vague description matches so many light novels like A Certain Magical Index or Infinite Stratos that the other two are flabbergasted at how little it's narrowed things down. He tries again regarding the premise of a power fantasy, and while they work out that he's talking about The Irregular at Magic High School for this one, it was still not the first thing he was trying to talk about despite fitting his description.
    Connor: What was that one from a few years ago, where they were all wizards and you had the one guy who could counter magic and it was fucking awful...
    Garnt: You just described, like, fuckin' 90% of most magic high school harems...
    Connor: And it'll be, like, eight girls, and they all have one personality trait, and that's it, and it was the most boring shit...
    Garnt: *laughing* I just like that these shows are so generic that trying to distinguish them has become an impossible task...
    Connor: *exasperated* IT'S FUCKING IMPOSSIBLE!
  • Freakier Than Fiction: Connor's career as a competitive chess player was covered in the tail-end of Episode 6—with all the attendant drama, twists and coincidences worthy of it becoming its own sports anime.
  • Funny Foreigner: All three discuss the risks of them being seen as one, plus the stigma this can in fact cause amongst native Japanese (for failing to observe daily urban customs). That said, they also said there are certain instances wherein one can in fact invoke the "gaijin card" as an excuse for unintentionally violating said norms. At the same time, their episode with Chris Broad also highlighted that there will still be actions that cannot be excused, either because they're pretty self-evident or violate common sense and taste, specifically noting the infamous antics of Logan Paul.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Pretty much Connor and Joey's reactions when Garnt attempts to explain how to navigate the Fate Series in episode 8. Connor even starts screaming at the various numbers of expies the franchise has when he asks how many Rins Fate has and Garnt can't answer right away.
  • Going Native: An issue for all three of them (even with Joey, who is half-Japanese/half-Australian); while they do significant work to blend in with Japanese society, all three of them still have issues with certain social aspects (as well as low-key discrimination). That said, the most blatant person they know to do this (with full "weeb"/"otaku" card on display) isn't even any of them, but Garnt's fiancee Sydney/@Sydsnap—who sang the theme song of Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day in karaoke with Japanese media executives.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: Connor is fine with Joey and Garnt calling him a monkey brain and has joked with them about how bizarre his brain can act.
  • Hentai: An inevitable topic when anything remotely degenerate comes up.
    • One particular aspect of the genre discussed (which also extends to JAV) is the "ugly bastard" (i.e. either ugly or very elderly men who tend to creep on/rape/have their way with the female protagonists). Kaho Shibuya lampshades that the JAV industry employs it not really as a gross-out, but supposedly as a form of self-insert Wish Fulfillment for the regular JAV consumer (instead of featuring idealized, handsome and heavily-built men like American porn. Not that they don't exist in JAV too of course). Reactions to this, of course, tend to vary heavily.
    • In addition, Kaho also admitted to engaging in both hentai doujin and anime as a) research for her own roles during her JAV stint; and b) more recently, as a seiyuu.
    • Part of the discussion in episode 8 is about Garnt and Joey's first exposure to eroge being through the adult section of Newgrounds, and the trials and tribulations of trying to download multi-gigabyte games one RAR file at a time, with the possibility of the entire effort being ruined by one file being corrupted.
    • During the conversation about Uzaki-chan Wants to Hang Out! in episode 14, they all agreed that it's very clear when a manga or anime's primary purpose is to fuel the doujinshi market.
    • Episode 20 has Garnt's fiance sydsnap/Sydney guest star which inevitably caused them to talk about hentai and eroge since Sydney's YouTube channel focuses on such content.
    • They outright discuss various hentai shows in Episode 25. Naturally, they can't show on YouTube as many clips as they normally would.
  • Hopeless with Tech: When speaking with guest Calliope Mori, they talked a bit about the technical difficulties that that they have to go through as content creators. Garnt and Connor called out Joey for streaming and editing on a single monitor setup and installing a graphics card but never removing the plastic cap to actually put it to use, instead having hooked up his monitor directly into the motherboard and using the onboard GPU. Calliope's manager, who was off-camera, was noted to give Joey a look of complete disbelief.
  • invoked Hype Aversion: They are all too familiar with how zealous the JoJo's Bizarre Adventure fandom is, as Connor was previously obsessed with it. They also highlight how pushy JoJo fans are with recommending the series and why this paints a poor impression of the fandom.
  • invoked Hype Backlash: Discussed at the tail end of episode 18, using Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba as an example. Connor starts with his experience over how hyped its 19th episode was, and how it's left him unimpressed with the spectacle in the prior episodes. Joey deliberately avoided watching Demon Slayer to prevent the hype from influencing his expectations.
  • Insistent Terminology: The phrase "monkey brain" which was originally used to describe Connor's more uncultured tendencies has since been used to describe a simpler state of mind where people just enjoy what's in front of them without thinking too much.
  • Likes Older Women: Joey reveals that Connor really likes MILFs in episode 18 which Connor fully agrees with. Connor's preferences are made more explicit by Episode 25 — he's admitted to jerking off to scenes from some of the shows discussed solely because an older woman was involved, while ignoring all the other poorly-done elements that have kept Joey and Garnt from enjoying the hentai normally.
  • Live-Action Adaptation: Their discussion on the topic seems to highlight how very few anime transition well into live-action, with the notable exceptions of Gintama and Edge of Tomorrow. Alita: Battle Angel, despite its generally favorable reviews, seems to split them as well.
  • Loveable Sex Maniac: All of the three have stripes of these (especially with their unabashed living up to the "waifu-worshipping"/"degenerate" aspect of most otaku):
    • Joey apparently tends to be the person who the other two (and by extension, their friends) are most likely to see hentai from in their Twitter feeds.
    • Garnt (especially in the post-Akihabara shopping episode [Episode 4]) became notorious for buying the lewdest merchandise, such as a nude Saki dakimakura and his prized possession, a pole-dancing Rias Gremory figurine.
    • Connor, who usually comes of as the more level-headed of the three, openly admits to "doing the deed" with hentai and tends to do more daring material/topics in his videos.
    • Sydney guest starred in Episode 20 and proved to be as big of a degenerate as the hosts, if not more. Connor hung a huge lampshade on the episode's overall degeneracy near its end.
      Connor: How is the Shibuya Kaho episode, like, ten times more wholesome than this?
  • Music of Note: Crossed with Awesome Music. The value of sound design is discussed in some episodes, particularly how unique sound design and musical compositions (such as the unique soundtracks of every installment of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure) help ensure that an anime production will not only sell well, but foster a large fandom engagement, undergo Memetic Mutation, and turn it into a classic.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Episode 16 reveals that Connor became the huge JoJo fan that he is today because Garnt mentioned it in one of his videos. Garnt outright states he created a monster when he realizes this because Connor used to be such a passionate fan that he never stopped referencing the series, driving Garnt insane.
  • Names to Know in Anime: A staple of discussions, especially when discussing the technical aspects of anime production. It did take center stage in Episode 9, when they compared the long-term industry development Japan has invested in cultivating anime-oriented talent (artists and seiyuu, specifically) to how other countries' dubbing/voice acting industries still don't pay much.
  • "No. Just... No" Reaction: Garnt's reaction whenever the subject of Connor's "monkey brain" comes up. In episode 9, he's so frustrated by Connor that he actually jumps from his seat and walks around a bit.
  • No Social Skills: Discussed in Episode 20, where they all talk about interactions they've had with fans that were lacking in social skills.
  • Nostalgia Filter: The show in part runs on this, especially as all three are YouTubers who were kids discovering anime during the 90s and the early 2000s. That said, being long-time anime viewers, they are also well-versed on which of the stuff they've watched has aged well and which hasn't—except maybe School Days.
  • Not What It Looks Like: As told by Garnt, after deciding to go home and watch anime, he did so with his pants off, because he found this comfortable. Then a fellow student walks into the room, right as the anime he’s watching is showing two girls naked.note 
  • Old Media Playing Catch-Up: Usually brought up when discussing the evolution of the Japanese popular culture industry:
    • As noted in Widget Series below, Chris Broad believes this is what is besetting Japanese free television.
    • Episode 13's discussion on anime/manga media piracy suggests this is what is really at play: that traditional business metrics of a show/series' success (i.e. DVD sales and merchandising) are slowly becoming less accurate. Hence, pirate streaming might indeed cause the spread and awareness of a show, but it may not automatically translate to sales (which is what matters). However, such a divide causes a massive wedge between anime production companies, legal streamers (like paywalled Netflix and Crunchyroll) and international anime communities.
    • In turn, it is precisely companies who try to provide accessible yet legal alternatives online (such as Kadokawa through Bookwalker—for manga at least) who are managing to bridge this gap.
  • Old Shame: invoked Defied by guest Kaho Shibuya. When asked about her previous career as a JAV actress (after starting out as a teacher and journalist), she says she isn't ashamed of her stint in the industry and is pretty open/comfortable about her work (unlike many unfortunately exploited/neglected ex-porn stars all over). She does, however, engage in newer, more significantly creative work (such as cosplay and writing) to rebrand herself.
  • Overused Copycat Character: When talking about the Fate Series in episode 8, they inevitably bring up the fact that Saber/Artoria has an insane amount of alternative versions as well as other characters that resemble her for some reason. The conversation leaves Connor flabbergasted.
  • Porn with Plot: In Episode 20, when Sydney was asked about how she got into hentai and eroge, she admitted that at first she started watching out of curiosity due to her lacking sex education, and only started to be a fan when she found some hentai that had good plots. Garnt also revealed that he enjoys porn more if he can get emotionally invested in it, and says that doujins with a long lead-up (10 consecutive pages without any sex) usually have a good plot to them.
  • Power Fantasy: Discussed in episode 14, with the three agreeing that everyone had a power fantasy stage while growing up and some people never fully outgrow them. Joey and Garnt also admit that they enjoy harems due to the power fantasy aspects of the concept.
  • Periphery Demographic: Factors in a lot of their conversations on how certain anime trends/fandoms evolved:
    • The old Digimon Adventure vs. Pokémon divide in the early 2000s was discussed, and how despite Digimon actually having more consistent story arcs, the near-ubiquity of Pokemon meant "nobody wanted to be the Digimon kid."
    • Humorously, Connor's nickname "the 93%", for having (previously) that proportion of female viewers compared to male viewers.
    • Later, the three agree that Connor's experience is in fact becoming the ideal way to approach becoming an anime YouTubers, in that original and unique content will better attract people towards taking part in the anime fandom than parroting/riffing off classic content (such as The Abridged Series and anime reviews).
  • Pop-Culture Isolation: A running theme when discussing how the state of anime's relative mainstream acceptability is brought up.
  • Product Placement: The podcast may usually engage in this in the middle of each episode (featuring that episode's sponsor). With the hosts also primarily sponsored by Bookwalker, they also tend to feature/promote their services. They also riffed on this when they did a promotion invoking the classic Japanese show commercial acknowledgment:
    この番組は、Bookwalker のスポンサーの提供で送りします。 (Kono bangumi wa, Bookwalker no suponsaa no teikyou de okuri shimasu.)
    This program is brought to you by our sponsor, Bookwalker.
  • Professional Wrestling: Brought up by Kaho Shibuya as one of her earlier fandoms/interests (as a follower of the WWE during the Attitude Era). The hosts did note how much of the tropes of wrestling (even New Japan Pro-Wrestling) can be read as "live-action anime" in their over-the-top aesthetics.
  • Reality Ensues: Many conversations deal with either deconstructing/smashing some myths and assumptions about content creation and life in Japan in general.
    • Episode 2 goes into extensive detail on how much the tourist/fictional depiction of Japanese life and actually living in Japan differ.
    • Chris Broad (of Abroad In Japan) admitted in a guest appearance that his initial idea of releasing videos daily while doing kilometers of bicycle treks was ruinous to his health.
    • Episode 6 discusses how learning Japanese through anime will most certainly not be helpful unless you're also actually practicing using and listening to the language.
    • For the tail-end of Episode 10, Garnt goes open with the subsequent withering away of Podtaku, citing creative differences and sustainability issues that prevented the collaborators from continuing their passion project. Ironically, this happened during the rise of monetization opportunities within YouTube and content creation.
  • Right Through the Wall: Mentioned in episode 12:
    • Due to his messed up sleep schedule, Connor would record videos at 2 a.m. When asked how his neighbours felt about that, he replied "fuck 'em". He then went on to state that they would also loudly play Peppa Pig at 4 a.m. themselves.
    • Garnt experienced the usual route this trope takes, with his next-door neighbours having a lot of long, loud sex, with loud, ugly-sounding orgasms. They would do this whenever he would start recording for his videos, causing him to believe they were trying to get back at him.
  • Roger Rabbit Effect: The podcast pulls this off with their first v-tuber guest Mori Calliope.
  • The Rule of First Adopters: Discussed in episode 19. Garnt recalls a school project where his group had to build a system that sends data wirelessly. After a day's worth of effort they get it to transmit "Hello world", and the next thing they think about was "Let's send ASCII porn." Then came the revelation of "wait, that was exactly how porn was started."
  • Running Gag: Usually from Joey and Garnt:
    • Joey has taken to using this intro format whenever he's hosting: "What's up you [insert Added Alliterative Appeal-themed Shout-Out to the audience]".
    • Garnt has also tended to use the lead-up "Question to you/you guys then", as well as describing something he likes as "hit[ting] different", bordering on Catchphrase.
    • Whenever they have a guest star, Garnt is the one hosting the episode. Garnt reveals it's purely accidental and he's actually pretty annoyed by it since he has to share the usually vacant side of the table the host gets.
    • When the podcast is talking about a topic that Connor dislikes or he feels is uncomfortable, he'll jokingly stand up and try to leave.
    • Connor disagreeing with the others or having an unpopular opinion, at which his co-hosts usually cringe, or get in an argument with him over it.
    • Various things get called "X with attitude" as a deliberately poor description.
    • Episode 20 has Joey repeatedly referencing "eye penetration" at (in)appropriate moments.
  • School Is for Losers: Downplayed. While all three members of the podcast are college educated (with Gigguk holding a Masters in electric engineering), they all express disappointment and regret over how much college just wasn't for them in the end. Episode 12 suggests the insane level of immaturity of their college schoolmates they have to put up with (some of which they also took part in) probably played a part in this as well.
  • Serious Business:
    • When Connor was recounting his experiences with professional chess, he recalled that higher-level players would extensively study the moves, openings and their past games, while teenage Connor was more concerned about unwinding in between matches and just went with his innate talent. He also notes that the kids who are good at chess essentially built their lives around the game, theorizing that their parents forced it upon them as it promises better future prospects. The amount of stress he was subject to at the professional scene turned him off from the game for some time.
      Connor: When I would do an opening move I always did the same ones because I liked it, and it was nice and symmetrical. And [the other players] would always say things like "Why didn't you use the Indian Prince move of 1764?" and I was like "What is that? I just like how the bishop goes 'boop!'"
    • Food, as shown in Episode 17, is this for the boys. One memorable section has Connor stating there isn't a point to eating only the hamburger patty which Garnt and Joey enjoy. During the conversation, Connor brings up steak; Joey reveals he feels it's overrated, which offends Connor and Garnt.
  • Sex Sells: As episode 25 is entirely about hentai, they cannot use as many clips as they'd like to demonstrate their topic of discussion without running afoul of YouTube's rules, and the few clips they do use are heavily edited. However, they lay out at the start of the episode that the uncensored version, complete with unedited clips, is available through their Patreon. Within a day, their patron count and income nearly tripled.
  • Sleep Deprivation: Garnt mentions in episode 12 how he would stay up till 4 a.m. to talk with American friends, only to have to get up at 8 a.m. for his job at the BBC.
  • Small Reference Pools: Usually raised when it comes to certain types of anime, manga or literature they pretty like but have near-zero reach to a mainstream audience.
    • Joey noted how even regular Japanese people would be less well-versed in anime than most otaku worldwide, with many having likely only watched basic TV fare like Doraemon or Sazae-san.
    • This was particularly noticeable with Dazai Osamu, the author of No Longer Human (who is probably better known as a character in Bungo Stray Dogs).
  • Smart People Play Chess:
    • The main topic of the tail-end of episode 6, with a discussion on why anime specifically about chess (comparable to Hikaru no Go) don't exist yet. This segued into Connor's own competitive chess-filled early life.
    • This, in turn, led to a surprising invoked Defictionalization: an actual Chess "Tournament Arc" involving the 3 hosts and their network of friendly YouTubers.
  • So Bad, It's Good: Connor explains he reads a lot of yaoi simply because most of the stories are so incredibly stupid that they're hilarious, though he does state there are some legitimately well-written series in the genre.
  • The Social Expert: Meilyne Tran (the show producer and the hosts' de facto overseer at Bookwalker) notes how she had to develop these skills (apart from Japanese fluency and business acumen) to make it into her position at Kadokawa, as well as noting that anyone who dreams of working in the anime industry has to break out of the Hikkikomori stereotype to get in.
  • Sporting Event: Episode 11 had a significant digression into a discussion/comparison of the rules and fandoms of baseball and cricket (rooting from Kaho Shibuya's experience covering Japanese baseball, as well as the three hosts' cricket background from the UK and Australia).
  • Story-to-Gameplay Ratio: At the heart of the discussion of Episode 8, i.e. how much gameplay and story/cutscenes interactive media (such as Video Games and/or Visual Novels) should have. Hilariously, Connor is pretty adamant and unapologetic at prioritizing gameplay (to the point of skipping cutscenes, as well as explaining his indifference to the visual novel format), which leads to him being labelled "monkey brain" by the other two.
  • Sucky School: Episode 12, appropriately enough, opened with a discussion on their respective universities' horror stories, ineffective management and Wacky Fratboy Hijinx the three hosts had to endure from their peers. Appropriately enough, their chosen YouTube thumbnail for this episode involves Iori from Grand Blue about to puke.
  • Tempting Fate: During their chess tournament, Dee misses a forced mate in two, but takes comfort in his board advantage and that "[he hasn't] fucked up royally." Joey checkmates him on the very next move.
  • Thousand-Yard Stare: When Connor states that "everyone wanks", Sydney momentarily adopts this look. Note that she's the only girl in a group full of boys (though no less degenerate).
  • Title Drop: The podcast's name is liberally invoked in most episodes, especially when they're dissing productions that didn't age well or when they openly admit to Guilty Pleasure watches/products.
  • Toilet Humor: Sometimes pops up in the most inappropriate contexts, but a significant amount appears in Episode 12's first half in Garnt and Connor's college stories. It even bled into their Product Placement for the Mobile Phone Game One-Punch Man: Road to Hero.
  • Unaffected by Spice: Episode 17 reveals that Garnt and Connor love spicy food, and they both complain about how little spicenote  is in Japanese food. In comparison Joey can barely handle spicy food, although he's proud of himself for having worked up to the level 3 spiciness at a curry restaurant that they all eat at. Garnt and Connor just laugh, as Garnt is used to fiery Thai cuisine and Connor regularly gets the level 10 curries from the same restaurant. Garnt also notes that Sydney, as a result of eating his mother's cooking, has built up enough of a spice tolerance that she can eat dishes that even he can't handle.
  • Unfortunate Names: Downplayed with Joey's YouTube handle, The Anime Man, simply because Joey joined YouTube a year after Mr. Anime was arrested—so plenty of people thought invoked Joey was the same person. Joey didn't know about that incident and only learned about it after too much time had passed to change his handle.
  • Villains Act, Heroes React: One episode has them discussing how, despite his arrogant demeanor, Pokémon's Gary Oak did look to be on better track becoming a Pokemon Trainer Master compared to Ash, who is engaged in so many distracting side-quests.
  • Virtual Celebrity:
    • Episode 18 touches on the Vtuber boom, with Garnt and Joey being fans while Connor is someone who is interested but not fully invested at least yet. They discuss the appeal, how easy it is to get addicted, the amount of vtubers at the time of recording and potential darker aspects of the industry.
    • Episode 23 has Calliope Mori appear as a guest on the podcast, sharing her personal experiences as one.
  • Whole Plot Reference: The second special (where the boys engage in basic training for drifting and interacted with long-time drift drivers) may be aesthetically themed akin to Initial D, but the beats of the episode are more akin to 2000s-era Top Gear and its Spiritual Successor show, The Grand Tour. The fact that it involves three in full Vitriolic Best Buds mode and filmed with the help of Chris Broad just pushes it home further.
  • Widget Series: Inevitable when discussing nearly all aspects of Japanese popular culture. The episode with Chris Broad of Abroad In Japan delved into a lengthy discussion of why certain Japanese shows (i.e. Takeshi's Castle, Ninja Warrior and Iron Chef) appeal to a global audience despite their "widget"-ness, and also why a bulk of mainstream Japanese television is stuck with being brain-deadening drivel.
  • Willing Suspension of Disbelief: When discussing the invoked Self-Insert Fic aspects of porn in episode 25, they have different thresholds to the amount of fantasy they can tolerate before it becomes too ridiculous to enjoy. Connor personally prefers some tinge of realism to a scenario so that he can enjoy it, while Garnt's gripe with harems is that too many members makes for logistical difficulty.
  • Worth It: After the chess tournament arc, Garnt pulls out two canned drinks with the letter "G" on each can, while exclaiming: "And I have just one thing to say: (shows cans) GG, baby, let's go!".note  He then admits that he bought these drinks purely for that joke and that they actually taste pretty bad, but that it was worth it for the joke.
  • Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: During Connor's time in professional chess as a teenager, he recalled receiving praise not for winning, but for putting up a stressful fight for the opponent even when he's long realized he's lost. He disliked receiving praise for forcing an unsatisfying stalemate after a grueling match that lasted hours.


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