Cold Badger Masa

Cold Badger Masa
A victim of the so-called Fast Food Grifter Clubbed to Death Case in 1970, he was a unique Fast Food Grifter who specialized in a seasonal dish called cold badger soba (cold buckwheat noodles with deep-fried tempura batter). Many scholars point out that his scams pioneered the critical approach to fast food.

Toshio Suzuki
(Nagoya, 1948). Studio Ghibli producer and CEO. He has produced the work of two of Japan's foremost animators, Isao Takahata and Hayao Miyazaki, including Spirited Away (2004) and Howl's Moving Castle (2005). Oshii and Suzuki have known each other for 20 years.

Narrator: The radical forces calling for a mass mobilization in a decisive anti-Anpo battle in 1970 had already suffered a substantial defeat in 1969 due to a riot incident. This had transformed the archipelago into a political vacuum, that was to be eventually filled by the Osaka Expo carnival. If analyzed from a cultural standpoint, it could be asserted without fear of contradiction that this national event bore not the slightest significance. So, what urged the Japanese people into such an excited mood? Even today, after so many years, no-one has been able to produce an acceptable explanation. Despite the cold shower represented by the oil shock, as a consequence to the Yom Kippur War in 1973, this unfounded optimism held on through the years to follow, right up to the catastrophic bursting of the bubble economy.

In those days, as though advocating his dissent against the times, a novelist committed suicide. And a Fast Food Grifter met an appalling death.

I965 * The US military bombs North Vietnam. * The Ventures visit Japan: electric guitar boom. * The penetration rate of refrigerators exceeds 50%.
I966 * Cultural Revolution in China. * Ultraman aired on TV. * The Beatles visit Japan.
1967 * Protest at Haneda Airport against the Japanese prime minister's visit to Southeast Asian countries.
I968 * Japan reaches the second highest GNP among the capitalist countries. * Minamata disease is recognized as a pollution-related syndrome. * University upheavals begin. * The first vacuum-packed food, "Bon Curry" introduced into the market.
I969 * USA's Apollo 11 lands on the Moon. * 8500 policemen assault the Yasuda Auditorium in the Tokyo University, occupied by members of the Zengakuren. After a 33-hour siege, the barricades are broken and the occupants arrested. (January 18-19). * Japanese Communist League - Red Army Faction, aiming to the world proletarian revolution, is founded. A plan for an armed assault to the Prime Minister residence is uncovered, 53 arrested (November 5). * TV animated series Sazae-san starts. In this lighthearted family comedy, all characters bear names related to the sea.
I97O * Expo in Osaka inaugurates (March 14). * Nine members of the Japanese Communist League - Red Army Faction hijack the JAL aircraft "Yodo" and flee to North Korea. It's the first hijack in Japanese history (March 31). * Students from Bund, Chukakuha and Liberation Group join in the protest in front of the Diet against the Japan-US Security Treaty (1970 Anpo), but the treaty is automatically renewed on June 14. This political defeat fuels dissatisfaction within the radical Red Army factions calling for armed revolution. * A student activist, member of the Marxist Revolutionary Movement, is abducted and killed by the Chukakuha, igniting inter-factional strife within the New Left (August 4). * Novelist Yukio Mishima commits suicide (November 25). * Cold Badger Masa beaten to death at "Mach." * The peak of economic growth, but distortion of modern society, such as destruction of nature, becomes evident. Escalation of student activists' "deliberation" or execution of traitors.

© 2006 MAMORU OSHII, Production I.G / TACHIGUISHI RETSUDEN Committee