Weekly Digest 11/19/16 – Watamodou, Drifters

Watashi ga Motete Dousunda – 07

OK, we’ve pretty much given ourselves over to silliness at this point.  But silliness is a good fit for Watamodou, so no complaints from me.

With that said, I was rather glad when the whole “Hyakki Sametora” fantasy sequence turned out to be a hallucination, because if that had been real it would be tough to take anything that happens in this series seriously enough for it to matter.  The main thrust of the satire this time is anime pilgrimages, which are of course a very real otaku phenomenon in Japan.  From the “Sailor Moon Shrine” in Tokyo to the many Anohana sites in Chichibu, anime tourism is big business.  It’s amusing in that many economically depressed areas outside Tokyo have grasped onto this straw as a way to make a few Yen, which leads to the reality of older Japanese who wouldn’t cross the street to piss on an otaku if they were on fire pretending that they give a crap about anime in order to exploit their wallets and purses.

I don’t believe Hyakki Sametora is a real historical figure, though the details of his story (fights against his son, pleads for his life to be spared, agrees to commit seppuku in exchange only to find out he’s already dead) sound very familiar to me.  The funniest part of the episode to me was all the oldsters at the Shrine wondering why so many young girls were at Sametora’s memorial this year (a scene which I suspected has played out in similar fashion many times in recent years), but all the stuff with mouth-to-mouth felt pretty played out and tired.

On the romance front, there’s a definite hint that Kae felt something when Igarashi almost kissed her.  But the main development belongs to Mutsumi (the “big, fluffy cat”), who’s the one who ends up with Kae when the psychedelic shrooms kick in.  After their unplanned dip in the lake he ends up stripping her (and himself) naked and curling up under a blanket with her.  Mutsumi is the ultimate good boy of course, but he’s not a robot (am I the only one who wants to see him freak out and go on a profanity-filled rampage?) and by my count, this certainly puts him in the lead.

 

Drifters – 07

A pretty standard episode of Drifters this week, as the series was in full-on Sengoku fantasy football mode.  If you started Gilles de Rais or Jean d’Arc, you’re in some trouble heading into Monday night.

With the arrival of the Ends and their army on the scene, things conveniently shook out for the cameras quite quickly.  Gilles de Rais took on Yoichi, Joan took Toyohisa, and Nobunaga was left to take command of the surviving elf army (after Joan’s flame attack).  As usual his thread was the most interesting – he led his troops in a textbook forest ambush of the enemy cavalry and gave a thoroughly historically accurate explanation for why cavalries could be eminently fallible.  The other two faceoffs were pretty by the book RPG style battles, though they did give us a look at the main cast facing off against rivals equal in strength for the first time.

There are a couple of new elements introduced here, to be sure.  First is the Ishida Akira character spying on everything, who based on his familiarity with Yoichi is some sort of Heian Era noble of importance (presumably a Minamoto or defeated Taira).  Then there’s the last-minute arrival of Butch and Sundance who, thanks to their Gatling gun, finally finish off de Rais after about 200 arrows couldn’t.  And in their company, the head of the Octoberists is revealed to be Abe no Harukaira – who I assume is connected to Abe no Seimei (who was apparently a bottom, or so I hear).  Now that the battle has more or less been fully joined, I suppose we’re going to get more details on the Hitler connection as soon as next week.

 

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3 comments

  1. S

    Haruakira is Seimei. This is the original reading of his name.

  2. Z

    I thought this was the first time that Mutsumi has shown anything other than plain old friendship for Kae. He’s always been my favorite character because he was friendly to Kae pre-weightloss, “saw” Kae even after the weightloss, seems to genuinely accept the fugoshi side of Kae and find things he can relate to in her obsessions, and actively protected her through the MMRPG arc – all without the obvious self interest that the others display. But I never felt he was interested in a romantic relationship, and I’m not sure how I feel about that if it happens.

  3. Well, not just ANIME pilgrimage… I live in Oxford and one of the first things I did when I moved here was go to the botanic garden to look for the bench that is described as the meeting point between Lyra and Will of “His Dark Materials” fame (YA fantasy trilogy novel, pretty amazing in fact, if you don’t know it). And sure enough, I found it, literally covered in “Lyra + Will” carvings and such. I don’t know if there’s people actually coming here just for that though XD.

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