Anime Contemplation Carefully considering the world of Anime, episode by episode.

18Oct/100

Autumn 2010

We're a few weeks into the Autumn 2010 season. There are not so many shows this month that interest me, so hopefully i'll be able to catch up on my two non-airing shows - Higurashi and Clannad.

A Certain Magical Index II (Toaru Majutsu no Index II)

Having enjoyed the first season of A Certain Magical Index, it would be silly not to watch the second one. I'm hoping that, despite the name, we'll see more from the girls rather than just Index and Touma - the preview seems to hint at this anyway. I will be (attempting to) write about this series.

My Little Sister Can't be This Cute (Ore no Imouto ga Konna ni Kawaii Wake ga Nai)

Kyousuke, a 17 year old high school student, is one night asked by his younger sister Kirino for some "life counselling". Unbeknown to him however, his sister is a huge fan of anime and little sister dating sims! Kirino has kept this a secret from everyone and desperately wants to have someone to share her hobby with. This should be a nice easy going comedy to contrast with the (probable) seriousness of Index II's plot. I won't be writing about this as there's not much to write about in a comedy series!

For a full list of what's on this season, complete with handy descriptions, have a look at this chart.

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17Oct/100

Clannad Ending

Clannad's ending is quite different to the opening. While the opening starts off slowly and quickly picks up speed, the ending's pace stays mostly the same thought. Having said that however, the ending is an absolutely beautiful song, both in terms of vocals and music. The song's lyrics are quite unusual, describing a family of dango (jam dumplings). I'm not quite sure what relation has to the main series, although i've heard that it somehow ties in with the main series - something to look out for.

The song itself is called だんご大家族 (dango daikazoku, Big Dumpling Family) and is sung by 茶太 (Chata).

Beautiful artwork

Extended dango family?

Wait, what?

16Oct/100

Summer 2010 Summary

The summer 2010 season ended a few weeks ago, so it's time to summarise what I watched.

High School of the Dead

This series had an interesting premise, a group of school kids fighting their way through a zombie outbreak. However, early on it became pretty clear that this series was going to take fanservice to a whole new level. Some people seemed to like this but personally I disliked the excessive amount of fanservice in the series. I do not mind fanservice in situations where it is appropriate or expected, but High School of the Dead has fanservice just for the sake of fanservice. I guess that you could at least say it stayed faithful to the original manga.

Final opinion: Neutral.

Ookami-san to Shichinin no Nakama-tachi (Ookami-san and her 7 friends)

I wasn't too sure what to expect from this at first - after all, how far can you stretch fairy tale parodies? However, it did turn out to be quite an interesting and amusing show that, despite it's premise, had a slight bit of plot.

Final opinion: Good

Asobi ni iku yo! (Lets go and play)

This was supposed to be my main show for the season but due to time constraints (such as writing the posts) it's the only show that i've not kept up to date with each week. For the moment, i'll be following this at the rate of the Bluray releases. However, based on the first few episodes it is reasonably interesting and different to all of the other summer 2010 series.

Cat Shit One

This one episode web OVA was certainly worth watching. While not animated in a traditional style (3DCGI) the episode itself was intreiguing - set in a middle-eastern warfare setting, but substituting traditional human opponents for rabbits and camels. More episodes are planned and I am eagerly awaiting their release.

Final opinion: Good

Utawarerumono OVA Episode 3

Utawarerumono's 3rd OVA episode was perhaps the best yet. While the previous two kept my attention I didn't feel like they where anything special. The 3rd one concentrated on two characters that I felt had been under-represented in the original series - Touka and Aruruu. There will be a post about this at some point, but for now let me recommend it to anyone who has seen the original Utawarerumono series.

Final opinion: Good

Unfortunately, none of the shows this season have been really outstanding, but at least there have been several to keep me interested. At the moment, we're approximately 2-3 weeks in to the Autumn 2010 season, expect a "what i'm watching post" very, very soon!

3Oct/100

Clannad Episode 1 – On The Hillside Path Where The Cherry Blossoms Flutter

Tomoya first encounters Nagisa

Clannad starts with an internal monologue from Tomoya about how he hates his boring repetitive life. However, on his way to school he encounters a girl, talking to herself, asking questions. Tomoya replies to one of her questions and begins a conversation. They continue their journey onwards to school.

After school, Tomoya visits his friend, Sunohora, who lives in the school's dormitories. However, he's fallen prey to the rugby team who are using him for scrum practice. Being the good friend he is, Tomoya stands back and watches. The rugby team don't disperse until dorm mother Misae chases them out with her mop.

After seeing Tomoya's normal daily life, we switch to a scene of a girl in another world (who looks suspiciously similar to the girl Tomoya met earlier) talk about her life - "A girl living alone in a world that has ended". I'm curious how this relates to the main series, is there more to Clannad than meets the eye?

Next time Tomoya arrives in class in the morning, he is approached by the class representative  - Fujibayashi. She attempts to convince Tomoya to arrive on time every day, but doesn't get very far. She offers to read his fortune, the result being that he'll be late tomorrow due to having a romantic meeting with a sweet girl. Suddenly, Tomoya has to dodge a flying book - thrown by Kyou, Fujibayashi's sister. Kyou is very defensive of Fujibayashi and Tomoya has to explain that he's not picking on Fujibayashi before she lets him go.

During lunch, Tomoya is trying to find somewhere to eat his own lunch when he comes across the girl again. She refuses to talk until she's finished her lunch so Tomoya decides sit and eat his with her. Once she's finished she reveals why she's always alone - the previous year she was out of school for quite a while and consequently has had to repeat. Sadly, this means that all of her friends have graduated and moved on and she's having problems making new friends. Tomoya offers some advice, but unfortunately it doesn't work. Suddenly, a commotion is heard from another part of the school, so they go to see what's going on.

Delinquent kids on bikes from another school are performing a 'raid' on Tomoya's school. Another girl confronts the bikers, Tomoya gets ready to assist her when another student says not to worry. Confusingly, the girl is also called Tomoya. It's going to be fun differentiating between the two, so I'll be calling female-Tomoya by her other name - Sakagami. Sakagami is apparently a really strong transfer student, she issues an ultimatum to the bikers asking them to leave, however they instead decide to charge her on their bikes. Suddenly, she leaps into the air and kicks all of them very fast. We then switch to a "spectator's view" where she kicks them extremely fast. One moment they're on the bikes, the next they're all over the place! I found this really amusing and hope we get to see similar fights involving Sakagami. Lunch ends and the repeater girl finally introduces herself to Tomoya, her name is Nagisa Furukawa.

Later on, Sunohora confronts Sakagami and claims that she faked the fight with the bikers. She offers to fight him to prove it. Realising what a stupid idea this is, Tomoya backs away. Sakagami insists that the fight is seen as self defence and so Sunohora must come at her. As he does, Tomoya suddenly remembers a tale of a girl in the town who went around beating up tough guys. Unfortunately, it's too late for Sunohora who is utterly defeated.

Earlier on, Nagisa expressed a desire to join the drama club and Tomoya convinced her to get over her fears and just go along. Later on, he follows up and arrives just as Nagisa is about to enter. Unfortunately, no one is there - the club was disbanded due to a lack of members. Tomoya offers to help her get it going again. He walks back home with her and she asks him to come and visit her some time time. After hanging around town for a while Tomoya decides to drop by the Furukawa bakery, where Nagisa lives. Upon entry, he is offered a bun by the server (Nagisa's mother). Unfortunately it's not very good and Tomoya doesn't hesitate to make his feelings clear which sends Nagisa's mother into a state of shock, running off in tears. Nagisa's father follows up with a threat against Tomoya, until he realises that he's Nagisa's friend.

Tomoa is invited to dinner with Nagisa's family, who turn out to be quite strange. They instantly jump to conclusions about a relationship between Tomoya and Nagisa and start thinking up crazy names for poor Tomoya (personally, I think Okazaki Tomoya Eternal is an awesome name). After eating, Tomoya returns home to find his father asleep in front of the TV. He apologises for causing trouble for Tomoya which causes Tomoya to run from the house. He eventually ends up back at the bakery. Nagisa is in the park opposite and offers to take him "to the place in town where wishes come true". Tomoya agrees and the ending plays. It's perhaps not the biggest cliffhanger i've seen, but it certainly raises questions - it seems Clannad could be much more than just a standard school anime.

And now for a small off-topic rant: my posts about episodes appears to be getting longer and longer. Either i'm watching shows with much more content or i'm getting more and more verbose. I'd rather not write long posts as it takes a long time and also it spoils most of the story for that episode. I want to write about my thoughts on the episode and to post amusing screencaps, not narrate the plot line! I'll have to see what I can do...

Clannad's scenery is truly beautiful

The alternative world girl - looks very much like Nagisa

The breif "Spectator's View" of Sakagami's attack

Why not? It's comfortable and just about the right height

Useful information for Sunohora

If it means I won't get my face smashed in, yes I am her friend!

I see no problems with this awesome name

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