“I like your style!” – Patrick Macias – Editor-in-Chief of OTAKU USA magazine
“The podcaster, specifically, sounded like a drunk surfer. I rather enjoyed that one. :p” – Justin Sevakis – Anime News Network, Director of New Media
Benjamin Lopez, known as “Benu” to his fans and listeners, is an internationally known anime podcaster and blogger. Born in Upland, California in 1985, Benu was introduced to anime at a young age before he even knew he was watching anime. Sailor Moon and Samurai Pizza Cats were some of the shows that were Benu’s introduction to anime.
Benu was then introduced to a little show by the name of Tenchi Muyo during high school. This is when he found out that the shows he had been watching for a long time were called “anime.” He then saw a show that changed his life forever: Neon Genesis Evangelion. The rest is history. Benu was sucked into anime and became an otaku before he even knew what the word meant. There was no turning back.
Sometime around 2005, Benu found out about this crazy thing called “podcasting.” He found out all he could about it and, using audio recording skills he learned by working behind the sound booth at his local church, he set out to make one. The first podcast Benu made consisted of a really cheap computer microphone that made his voice horribly distorted. The only way he could get a clear recording of his voice was to cover the microphone with his hand in a way that his voice still could be picked up by the microphone. Four episodes later the cheap microphone broke and Benu was without a mic. He finally got a new headset mic to replace the broken one and the show continued on.
Benu started the podcast under the name Benu’s Podcast as sort of a personal podcast to talk about what anime he was watching at the time as well as what manga he was reading. After he learned additional technical recording skills, some of his friends started to join in on the show via the Internet with a little program called Skype. The podcast then started to grow into something more then just a personal anime podcast Benu did for fun. The name Anime Genesis was suggested as a new name for the podcast and Anime Genesis was born.
“The oldest podcast I know of. Not a bad thing. Longevity must go for something.” – Mike Nicolas – The Anime Roundtable Podcast
Anime Genesis has been credited as one of the first and longest-running anime podcasts in existence on the Internet today. Benu is also credited as an anime podcast pioneer. Anime Genesis has been featured and mentioned on many sites and podcasts including Anime News Network, Mania.com, Anime World Order, Anime Pulse, Lab Rats and many more. Benu has also been able to film and record interviews and panels with some of the biggest names in anime today such as the very popular anime voice actresses Aya Hirano, Minori Chihara, and Yuko Goto of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya and Lucky Star fame. He has also hosted two podcasting workshops at Anime Expo, the nation’s largest anime and manga convention. Benu has also been one of the hosts of The Indecent Otaku Comedy Show at Anime Expo in 2009 and 2010.