Weekly Digest 5/13/13 – Haiyore! Nyaruko San W, Mushibugyou

Haiyore W  - 06-9 Mushibugyou - 06-3

I don’t think I reacted to this development in Haiyore! as I was intended to.

Haiyore! Nyaruko-san W – 06

Haiyore W  - 06-1 Haiyore W  - 06-2 Haiyore W  - 06-3
Haiyore W  - 06-4 Haiyore W  - 06-5 Haiyore W  - 06-6
Haiyore W  - 06-7 Haiyore W  - 06-8 Haiyore W  - 06-10
Haiyore W  - 06-11 Haiyore W  - 06-12 Haiyore W  - 06-13
Haiyore W  - 06-14 Haiyore W  - 06-15 Haiyore W  - 06-16

I don’t tend to think much of the episodes where Haiyore! Nyaruko-san tries to get serious, but this is one of the better examples so far.  It certainly isn’t thanks to the plot device of Kuuko’s sister, who’s one of the more annoying characters of the season – I’d be quite happy if Nyaruko really did lock her in that room for a few millenia.  And I’m not all that sympathetic to Nyaruko’s sob story, either.

The odd thing is, I think I like Mahiro and Kuuko as a couple better than Mahiro and Nyaruko (or Nyaruko and Kuuko, for that matter).  There was a charm and romantic spark to their supposedly fake romantic moments (which Kuuko admitted weren’t entirely fake) that I’ve frankly never seen between he and Nyaruko.  And Kuuko actually thinks about the reasons she’s attracted to him, and they’re good ones.  All Nyaruko ever does, really, is fall back on the “I’m the main character so it has to be me!” gag – the irony being, of course, that she’s almost surely right.  Even when she manages to break down his walls a little, she has to blow it by stuff like coming to the breakfast table with lies about all the things they did together the night before.  I think Nyaruko could take a few lessons from Kuuko on how to win a guy over – which is also some pretty good irony.

Comedy-wise, there wasn’t really all that much happening this week, which is not a good thing where this series is concerned – usually, though in this case the plot worked well enough to carry the episode modestly well.  We had a very funny bit with Kuuko trying to think up baby names combing her name with Mahiro’s (my favorite was Kuroko – “If it’s a boy he’ll play basketball, and if it’s a girl we’ll send her to Academy City”) and another solid gag with Yoriko spinning tales of her courtship (why don’t we ever see Mahiro’s Dad, anyway?) to Shanta-kun.  Sadly Hastur remains mostly irrelevant, which is an ongoing problem for this series.  For all its edginess it doesn’t really have the guts to treat Hastur as a serious romantic option for Mahiro, which relegates him either to being the punch-line, the peacemaker or irrelevant altogether apart from the occasional episode that focuses on him as a stand-alone.

Mushibugyou – 06

Mushibugyou - 06-1 Mushibugyou - 06-2 Mushibugyou - 06-4
Mushibugyou - 06-5 Mushibugyou - 06-6 Mushibugyou - 06-7
Mushibugyou - 06-8 Mushibugyou - 06-9 Mushibugyou - 06-10
Mushibugyou - 06-11 Mushibugyou - 06-12 Mushibugyou - 06-13
Mushibugyou - 06-14 Mushibugyou - 06-15 Mushibugyou - 06-16
Mushibugyou - 06-17 Mushibugyou - 06-18 Mushibugyou - 06-19

The plot thickens, as they say – and given the news that Mushibugyou is going to be a two-cour series (at least) that’s good news, as there should be time to sort it out.

The big addition to the cast is Nagatomimaru, the gent in the Noh mask we saw at the end of the last episode.  He’s an odd sod to say the least – an insect otaku and hikimomori (although the latter turns out to be not really true given the reveal at the end of the episode), he’s broken into the Insect Magistrate in an attempt to get a look at their secret library, desperate to learn why giant insects suddenly appeared 100 years earlier.  I’d kind of like to know myself.  He’s played by Fukuyama Jun in what for him amounts to a somewhat understated performance, yet another big name in a cast full of them.

As if last week’s introduction of a giant flea wasn’t disturbing enough, this time it’s a giant mosquito – another bug I especially dislike even in its normal size.  Nagatomimaru ends up being the latest member of Jinbei’s harem, swept along by his honesty and martial spirit, and while his attempted break-in to the library proves disastrous he does prove useful in helping Jinbei defeat the aforementioned O-Ka.  But not before convincing himself it was all a dream even as the bug sucked the blood out of a bystander with grotesque sound effects.

As it turns out Nagatomimari is none other than Tokugawa Ieshige, the heir to the Shogunate.  Mushibugyou has taken some major liberties with history – the real Ieshige was facially deformed and had a speech impediment, this one is a bishounen voiced by Jun – but it’s true he was an odd man thought unsuited for the succession by most of his father’s retainers.  His connection to the Insect Magistrate should prove an interesting complication – he agrees to Kotori’s deal that he keep secret what he eventually sees in the archives in return for having his identity protected, but only if he can come and play with Jinbei every day.  And what he was saw a map with a strange crest on it, showing a giant “X” through the South of Japan, leading to the inescapable conclusion that there are major conspiracies at work here.



  1. M

    Haiyore! Nyaruko San W is an anime I never really took seriously – but this episode somehow change that. We all know Nyaruko love Mahiro but for her to say it so sincerely actually tears me up a bit. Somehow this episode shows me a side that I never really expect of Nyaruko – a side that demands me to see her as more than a shallow love interest.


  2. h

    I would like to reiterate your comment, replacing Nyaruko with Kuuko. It all comes back to Enzo's "spark" — it's amazing to see Mahiro constantly blushing and opening up to Kuuko and vice versa. "There must be something there that wasn't there before."

  3. E

    The stupid bitch can be stuck in alternate dimension forever. She is too much of stereotype character. It's really unbearable. Oh, I am a lesbian and I love my own sister. A character with only two personalities.

    That's why Kuuko is the most interesting character of this anime currently. She once thought of Mahiro as a rival, also there are time that she thought of getting Mahiro for herself so that Nyaruko can't get him, but these latest 2 episode has really sparked something different within her.

    And Hastur is just a gay little brother. He's a character with super thin personality as well.

  4. H

    If she could turn it down, she would get Mahiro in two heartbeats. I can wish that Nyarlko would get the message at some point, but I don't know if she will. Mahiro is not the most forceful at getting the message across, but it's been there for her to see, and she just won't. But when he has a chance to tell her, he won't say it. Maybe the show doesn't want to actually push Nyarlko to change her nature, because then she's not as zany and 'fun', but for most of this season, the show's been more stagnant and dull, because there's no progress anywhere. Even in this episode's teary confession and begging by Nyarlko, there was nothing about her changing the way she acts. She basically took the whole thing as "Green Light" to keep going the way she always has, which doesn't work.

    I think that's why people are latching onto Kuuko's recent development, because it's actually something happening. She's actually trying to change things. Nyarlko's method is more of 'smash square peg into round hole'.

    And Hastur, I don't know if there's really anything else they could do with him. I don't really care for the "me too!" routine he's always got, but if he wants to be Mahiro's lover, it's just not going to happen. Essentially there's nowhere to go.

  5. f

    My take on this episode was exactly the same as yours, Enzo. Whenever this show makes Nyaruko act sincere, it makes me cringe. So I figured I wouldn't like any of the sincere episodes. This one surprised me by being pretty enjoyable though, and that's because of the not-quite-fake romantic development between Cthuko and Mahiro. I'm usually totally against turning yuri characters straight, but there was something very sweet in Cthuko's interactions with Mahiro this episode that made me overlook that.

    Of course, they couldn't leave the episode without another cringe-worthy Nyaruko "confession" (in quotes because it's nothing new) scene. Honestly, I was the opposite of Nyaruko this entire episode: while she was uncomfortable about the "date" between Mahiro and Cthuko and kept trying to pull them apart, I was wishing the entire time for her not to get in the way. Oh well.

  6. M

    I was ready to drop Mushibugyo after episode 04's Tenma episode (I don't care for him nor do I think he belongs in the Magistrate), but this Nagatomimaru character -along with an endearing performance by Fukuyama- drew me back in. Hoping they ease off on the character introductions soon since the plot undercurrent is looking somewhat promising in its own right.

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