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Japan Enters the Reiwa Era on May 1st


Japan Enters the Reiwa Era on May 1st

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Heisei era to end on April 30th.

Emperor Akihito of Japan will step down on April 30th, signaling the end of the Heisei era, which began in January 8th 1989. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga announced the name of the new era, the Reiwa era.

In Japanese the Kanji used are 令和, coming from order or command and harmony.

The imperial eras are used in Japan as a calendar system dictated by the sitting emperor, with 2019 being known as Heisei 31. The era’s name will become the emperor’s posthumous name.

On August 2016, Emperor Akihito had a televised address in which he spoke about his old age and declining health. Due to war time laws, the Emperor is not legally allowed to interfere in Japanese legislation, which governs laws over abdication. Akihito’s address was seen as an urging to law makers in the country to allow his abdication. His son, Prince Naruhito, will ascend to the throne on October 2019, with the Heisei era ending on April 30th, 2019 and the Reiwa era beginning on May 1st.

The name was selected by a nine person group, said to include a Nobel Prize winning scientist. As with previous names, this new era’s name adheres to the a strict two Kanji pattern.

Kamen Rider Black RX and Sekai Ninja Sen Jiraiya were on the air when the Showa era ended following the death of Emperor Hirohito.

Kamen Rider Zi-O and Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger will be the final tokusatsu shows to air in the Heisei era and continue on into the Reiwa era.

One of the founding members of The Tokusatsu Network. Jorge serves as an editor, writer, and regular podcast panelist.

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