My manga-illustrator friend June told me very casually today over dinner, as though it was the most normal thing in the world, about a manga-turned-animated series involving agriculture students, one of whom has the special ability to see microbes with the naked eye. I swear I am not making this stuff up. Many a grad student has pondered the peculiar Japanese drive to make everything kawaii and their love of anthropomorphizing just about everything, but this Moyashimon series that turns everything from the bacteria strains used to make natto (fermented soybeans) and yogurt to staph and salmonella into cute little talking creatures really blows my mind! I guess they’ve started airing a new live-action version of the series now on late night Fuji Television, which looks way worse than the manga or the anime. Floating computer-generated talking bacteria combined with laughably bad acting just doesn’t do the cute little illustrations justice! Anyway, I’ll certainly never look at E. Coli the same way ever again.