melancholy of haruhi suzumiya 12

Rock on Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya.


The cultural festival episode begins, and according to the timeline, occurs before Day of Sagittarius and well after Haruhi’s healthy girl rant. Very normal episode… Kyon starts out visiting various booths and clubs as part of the cultural festival, bemoaning the fact that he had to stay up all night tossing together Mikuru-run 0. He meets up with other potato-like substances and walks around the festival.

Haruhi is back in her haruhigastic bunny girl outfit *nods approvingly*, the computer club is demoing their game, Yuki uses her witch costume from the movie to become a fortune teller (shouldn’t Mikuru-run be the one doing this?), Itsuki is being Itsuki, and LOL FANG-TAN and Mikuru have their extremely popular yakisoba cafe. Wow. Cute outfits. *nods approvingly* Loved LOL FANG-TAN’s rant for the ages, “All these people are lined up for some shitty, cheap yakisoba. We’re raking it in! I can’t stop laughing!” Not exactly what you should say to prospective customers, but definitely haruhigasm material.

(BTW, I think Mikuru and LOL FANG-TAN’s class had more hawt chix0rs than School Rumble‘s class 2-C. Mikuru alone is worth a few Mikotos.)


After leaving his friends, Kyon just wants to crash somewhere and ends up catching a few zzzz’s in the music auditorium where a few amateur bands are performing. That is until ENOZ reaches the stage… with Bunny Girl Haruhi and Witch Girl Yuki front and center. A very different Haruhi then starts belting out God Knows…, a brief intermission where Haruhi introduces the band as I kept blinking in disbelief… that humble, slightly insecure, non-megalomaniac girl is Haruhi!?! And finally ends with Lost My Music. Fantastic five minutes of anime, if only because I was so confused… wait, that’s Haruhi?!? She’s not saying stuff like, “I kidnapped their singer! Look at me!” Or “I dedicate this song to my one and only true love, Mikuru!” Stranger yet, the crowd inexplicably starts backing her, like how the Russian crowd starts backing Rocky at the end of Rocky IV, and both Kyon and I are dumbfounded. Everyone was indoors cheering, partly because it was raining out, mostly because Haruhi was bringing the house down… man, if a Cute Bunny Girl with a Voice was belting out a song, I think I’d cheer loudly too. In fact, I think I did.

The next day, Haruhi and Kyon have a normal conversation about why she and Yuki took the places of the two injured ENOZ members. The band shows up and wants to thank Haruhi, but she’s a bit shy (!?!) and grabs Kyon by the necktie to come with her. The band thanks her and invites her and Kyon to watch their concert. I was dying for Nakanishi to call Kyon “kareshi”… but I’d settle for the “otomodachi.”


Haruhi then disappears for lunch, and Kyon tracks her down. Appropriately, like any tree found in any dating sim since the days of Tokimeki Memorial. Haruhi is completely not herself, “I started questioning what I’m doing with my life,” a bit rattled from what appears to be new feelings developed from her public service. Kyon: “You’re not used to being appreciated by other people. You’re always doing things that wouldn’t get a ‘thank you’.” (He’s being nice… “You’re always selfish!”) After Kyon speaks, it’s like Haruhi snaps back to normal and goes back into her evil despot/megalomania mode plotting for next year’s festival.

(And I gotta love how Haruhi drags Kyon not by the necktie but by holding his hand at the end.)

The SOS Brigade Awesomeness Index


UP Aya Hirano… now that, my friends, is a voice. She’s making it very difficult for me to try and think of another seiyuu who could do Haruhi’s voice justice… the cute, the megalomania, the tsundere, the singer… all the roles of Haruhi. Ayako Kawasumi? No. Maaya Sakamoto? No. Horie Yui? No. Rie Tanaka? Maybe. Let’s call this the Seiyuu Value Add (SVA), and Aya’s score is very high since not many can step in and do as good of a job. Aya Hirano just needs some English lessons, and she’s set.


(After watching her seiyuu interview for Haruhi Suzumiya, I’m officially a fanboy and voting for cute.)

UP ENOZ… much, much better than Ichijou’s band on School Rumble. First off, their lead singer is a bunny girl! ;)

DOWN MD… what year this is? 2002? Shouldn’t they be trading ogg files with their iPods? Or beaming mp3s with their 3G cellphones? Or even get it listed on ITMS?

UP Haruhi Suzumiya, Team Player… whoa. If it weren’t for the last three minutes, I’d swear they secretly replaced with beloved Haruhi with a decaf version. Helping others? Talking like a normal person? Insecure? Our Haruhi? Whoa. Yes, Normal Girl Haruhi is still cute, with the added bonus that deep down that costume raper/megalomaniac still lurks and can surface any minute. Ticking time bomb of fun. Kyon needs to speed things up.


UP LOL FANG-TAN, Uber-Saleswoman… she reminds me of Dilbert’s boss when he goes into a meeting with a customer, and the customer asks, “Why should I buy your product?” And Dilbert’s boss answers, “Because we have the highest margins in the industry!” That’s LOL FANG-TAN’s saleswomanship, but since she’s hawt, I’m still going to buy yakisoba from her, even if it’s $10 a plate and made from old, recycled Chinese newspapers. Still, she’s fangy, laughy, and very blunt. Gotta find a way to make her a full-fledged SOS Brigade member somehow.


DOWN Mikuru, Ghost… what the? Not counting the first five seconds of Mikuru-run 0, she had 26 seconds of screentime. How is this acceptable? Only 26 seconds of Yakisoba Mode Mikuru? Who was in charge of this episode?!? Heads will roll!!!

(Though I’m hoping the series runs along enough to get to year two of Haruhi just so we can see Mikuru bouncing with the tambourine… like you wouldn’t be hypotonized by that?)

DOWN Itsuki, Babe Magnet… hey, at least the really, really underaged crowd digs him.

(Note to Kyon: keep your little sister away from Itsuki.)

DOWN Who Wants to be a Millionaire… I think Japanese game shows are prohibited from law from actually giving out a million dollars US equivalent. Nonetheless, I think Haruhi would be awesome as a host of The Weakest Link. Can you imagine her glee as she says, “You are… THEWEAKESTLINK!”


UP Kyon, Otomodachi… for snapping Haruhi back into her genki self. He did look very lonely walking around the festival without Haruhi. (Plus, I loved how his faced cringed up when he saw Haruhi walk onto the stage. A+.)

UP Kyoto Animation… not for any actual animation (I praise them enough as is), but for them to release the single with the insert songs the same week the episode airs. Maximize sales. Business genius. (Unlike, oh, Geneon who took over two months to get Red Fraction out.)


(Oh, yes, yet another example of Kyoto Animation’s attention to detail is that as Kyon walks around the school, you can see Haruhi and Yuki buzzing by in the background. You can also see the other members of ENOZ running around throughout Kyon’s tour as well, like when they brushed up against them when he was waiting to get into that heavenly cafe. Or when Kyon first meets up with his friends, you can see the ENOZ members arguing near the school lockers, and two bunny ears show up right when they cut away.)

UP Kyoto Animation Again… for the sweatdrops on Haruhi when she was singing. And her hair starts frizzing. You never saw detail like this for Meer, Lacus, Belldandy, Ichijou, et al when they sing but definitely what’ll happen in real life.

UP Kyoto Animation Yet Again… for the “Haruhi throws grass at Kyon, grass flies back at herself, causing her to go, ‘Mou’ and making a pouty face” scene. I think I’ve seen similar scenes between Chidori and Sagara many times, and Kyoto Animation are great at these types of moments. I can’t wait for Ayu to do this after Junichi picks on her, and all the bloggers going, “AWESOME HARUHI REFERENCE!” I give it two-to-one odds.

UP The Cat… for being on the cultural festival’s program.

UP I-No… witch + guitar (funny how her cheap-ass attack is called “megalomaniac”).

88 Responses to “melancholy of haruhi suzumiya 12”

  1. This was the best concert ever in an anime. Even outdoing dedicated music shows like Full Moon and Beck.

    Mitsuki wishes she could play a crowd like Haruhi can.

  2. great episode, showed another side of haruhi that not many thought she had

  3. I have to say that the concert was great – especially since it looked and SOUNDED like one.. and the music was enjoyable, no less. Plus the way it let them show another side of Haruhi…. excellence. Heck, the way her hair just got sodden towards the end was very nicely done… and having Yuki there suddenly turn into a guitar virtuoso, with her eyes being hidden behind the weird-but-mysterious-appearing hat.. well, that worked for me too.

    Besides, any episode that has Tsuruya and Mikuru in meido-waitress uniforms can’t be bad… ;)

  4. A very sweet and incredibly enjoyable episode! :D
    I gotta agree with all the plusses for Kyoto Animation and Aya Hirano. So much goodness should be illegal.
    Love your blogging too! Started reading a few weeks ago, now I check it daily! :)

  5. kept getting goosebumps throughout the concert time. that’s definitely got to be a sign of a good concert :)

  6. Aw… no comments on Haruhi’s emo-tortion? :P

    That aside, a collection of comments I have made and read elsewhere,

    ..) ENOZ, the name of the band, is a parody of a real-life J-Pop band known as ZONE. Mirroring their counterparts in number and instruments played as well.

    Originally posted by Saku:
    “Wow, I’m slow. I was wondering why the anime adaptation made the band 4 members instead of 3 members like in the novel, and then I realized the band name ENOZ is a tribute to ZONE. xDD

    Two of the four members have similar names, too (I couldn’t hear the remaining two’s names clearly)

    ZONE -> ENOZ
    Mizuho -> Mizuki (drummer)
    Maiko -> Mai (bass)”

    ..) My comments from hontou ni sou omou,
    “Now that I have seen the fansub for SHaruhi, a few comments about the differences between the Novel and Anime.

    ..) Kyon had quite a lot of inner monologues during the performance in the Novel. Fortunately, the general impact of the scene is not affected too much in the anime, so no worries here.

    ..) Kyon and Itsuki had a more detailed conversation in the Novel. KyoAni most probably cut out this part due to time constraints, but it is a pity… since it adds more details to what actually happens during the concert. Then again… the conversation would have interrupted our hearing of Haruhi’s singing, since well… the Novel will not have the problem of conflicting audio. Heck, the Novel is ambigious in what Haruhi is actually singing. So I think, in the end, KyoAni made the better choice of letting us actually get to see and hear what Haruhi is performing, and leave it to us to judge what is going on through visual clues.

    ..) Kyon’s glance to the window in the ending scene was a glance to the SOS-Club’s window. He thought he would see Nagato Yuki looking out of the window observing them. He apparently suspected Yuki of pulling the strings in this one. Most probably unfounded paranoia though, since Kyon suspects Yuki of everything, second only to Itsuki. :P

    ..) Kyon’s growing look of DOOM was priceless.

    ..) Yuki’s silence after Haruhi introduced her was funny. I had hope she would go into solo-strumming mode instead, but that is probably just wishful thinking on my part.

    ..) Just what the heck was that guy doing in a pink dog suit leashed by three girls at the beginning of the episode? *shudder* Kyon’s school is very, very liberal, I must say… especially with the Hard-Gay parody and masked men walking around in their swimming trunks…


  7. Another up for Kyoto Animation for their attention to detail.

    The drumming was in time, and so were the instruments.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if they were also animated with the right chords.

    God, when Haruhi hit the scream-y part on the second verse, chills ran up my spine as if I was at a real concert.

    A downer for me is that we didn’t get to see Yuki’s predictions come true. And I skipped at the exact times she mentioned, but no soft-serve ice cream or sign hitting. Maybe I’ll spot them, but still.

    Oh yeah…a bit later in the episode when Haruhi and Yuki zip by with Guitars on their backs, I knew something was up. I’m just sad I completely missed the ENOZ band members and Haruhi sneaking up on them while Kyon, Taniguchi and Kunikida were talking in the foreground.

    I don’t like Itsuki much, but I laughed when he was overacting as per usual.

    And to close this post…goddammit…I can’t stop listening to Koi no Mikuru Denseetsu…it’s so addicting…

  8. And, God, I hate doubleposting, but…those people walking in the hallways shots when Kyon starts walking in…some of them are dressed up as aliens.

    I MIGHT be stretching it here, but…Cromartie High School reference, anyone?

  9. hey jason, care to tell me what dareshi means ? : )

  10. First off, I have to say that I’m in love Aya Hirano’s voice. God Knows is the only song that I’ve had on loop in itunes for the past day, that song is like crack for me. lol

    Secondly, is it too late for Haruhi to kidnap Mizuki, the band drummer, and force her into the SOS-dan? I mean all the hawt girls seem to congregate in the SOS Brigade so why isn’t she in it? This would give Haruhi a drummer for her band as well so it’s a win situation all around! And that black choker that Mizuki had on was just too hawt. Chokers FTW!

  11. From the context I believe it would be “boyfriend”. Or something along those lines at least.

  12. hard gay ftw =D

    not that i think beck is bad, but i wish it looked as good as this.

  13. And the blatantly obvious ZONE tribute which is why the anime band has 4 members where as the novel version had only 3; all 4 members of ENOZ have names similar to their actual ZONE counterpart and play the exact same instruments…I love KyoAni.

  14. Haruhi sure sings well…or is that an understatement? :D I sure wish this anime goes on. It’d be nice to see more of Haruhi and her SOS Brigade. heheheh!

    I’ll be stopping on my anime addiction for some time (darn work). Till I find a way to get some access to all the haruhi/anime goodies I gotta rely on your blog for updates and such. ^^ I’ve always liked the way you blog about it.

  15. Hmm… I just recently rewatched FMP!Fumoffu, and while rewatching SHaruhi Ep12, I had a sudden sense of Deja’Vu from one of Kyon’s comments.

    I double-checked with the translated novel, and true enough, his comment was not from the novel.

    Kyon said in the anime[07:00-07:03], “Anyway… enjoy the cultural festival. In a normal fashion.”

    At that point, I suddenly had a superimposed image of Sagara Sousake over Kyon, with Taniguchi as Kurtz Weber. For those who do not get it yet, in the Hot Springs episode of FMP!Fumoffu, Sagara told Kurtz to enjoy the hot springs in a normal fashion( the subtext being, not to peep on the girls). Kyon’s comment to his friend is almost word for word similar, and the subtext is similar too.

    Both Taniguchi and Kurtz share one more thing in common… they both failed in the end. ;)

  16. Haruhi’s dragging Kyon with her when talking with the ENOZ band members show how she still have difficulties communicating normally with other people when not in megalomania mode. She wouldn’t even say a single word to Ryoko Asakura back in the opening minutes of Episode 10 until Kyon arrived. Kyon’s her moral pillar of support.

    Really loved the “sochira no…” bit as Kyon and Haruhi blinked when the band member paused before completing it with “…otomodachi isshioni”. Once she saw both Kyon’s and Haruhi’s expressions, she quickly changed it to “otomodachi” instead of “kareshi” (boyfriend) to avoid embarassing them.

  17. Mizuki was winking at Haruhi too when Nakanishi referred to Kyon as Haruhi’s friend. ;)

  18. Odly it felt like very little happened this ep.
    And i think the in ep music sounds better then the single, they added acoustics and crowd sounds, so its like its live.

  19. Did anyone else think that the music the orchestra was playing when Kyon entered the auditorium sounded familiar?

  20. >>Maximize sales. Business genius.
    People at 2ch were saying that during the concert(especially when using close up views such as Nagato playing the guitar & Haruhi’s *dreadful* look) frame rate increases to 24fps, typical OVA frame rate(so if you slow down the clip, you can still see Nagato tapping the guitar with her fingers, instead of some blurry frames); if that’s true then KyoAni really puts a lot of thought in promoting this single.

    >>Mikuru, Ghost…
    I have got a theory, say if Kyon is the actual people in charge of this ep., or he is the one that alters the world on his wishes; and say Kyon got bored with Mikuru, or bored with Maid in general.
    ( observation: there is NO love in his eyes )
    Then sorry Mikuru, Kyon*-sama* decides to go for a change during the cultural festival: bunny girl …

    >>The Cat… for being on the cultural festival’s program
    Am I the only one can’t find ‘him’ ?

  21. May I ask you where do you get the HDTV versions of the episodes?

  22. Why does the song that the orchestra is playing when kyon comes into the auditorium sound so familiar?

  23. First off, can someone explain to me why Tsuruya is being called LOL-FANG?

    > Haruhi Suzumiya, Team Player… whoa. If it weren’t for the last three minutes, I’d swear they secretly replaced with beloved Haruhi with a decaf version.

    I’m very surprise by her behavior for most of this episode too. Didn’t she consider *all* clubs in the school, which should’ve included the ENOZ band also, boring before?

    The Haruhi I know would’ve drop-kicked the remaining band girls, and then enlighten them the path to higher truth in the manner of haruhiism.

    But instead, she thanks them! And set herself beneath these boring humans! That humbling speech on the stage! And that talk under the tree about following ENOZ next year, it was as if these worthless humans have instead shown Haruhi the right path instead.


  24. I cannot stop listening to God knows. It’s just so addictive. Yay for releasing the insert song after this episode. A complete win.

  25. Originally posted by justanothergirl:
    “First off, can someone explain to me why Tsuruya is being called LOL-FANG?”
    ~~~~ ~~~~

    She originally had two nicknames. One was LOL-tan, due to her compulsive laughter; the other was FANG-tan, due to her, well… toothy fang. One thing led to another, and the nicknames got merged into LOL-FANG-tan.

    ~~~~ ~~~~
    “I’m very surprise by her behavior for most of this episode too. Didn’t she consider *all* clubs in the school, which should’ve included the ENOZ band also, boring before?”
    ~~~~ ~~~~

    I am under the impression that this band is not from a club, but an actual band. The band’s name after all, comes from the first letter of the last names of the band members.

    Ergo, a band of friends. Not a school band.

    So Haruhi would never had join the band before.

  26. Sorry for double posting, but something just came to my mind that may explain the mellow behavior in Haruhi.

    In the first episode, Haruhi and Kyon are two extreme opposite in personality. Kyon was like the feather-in-the-wind: he goes where the wind blows, while Haruhi was … well … megalomaniac. But as time went on, they seem to absorb each other’s personalities and both become more balance. Now, Kyon is more assertive while Haruhi is more agreeable with others.

    I guess this makes character development makes a nice story ending, but I’m not sure a show about balanced people is as fun to watch.

  27. Next week’s episode returns to when Haruhi was still a megalomaniac, so it will provide a nice contrast of how far she has come since her introduction in episode 2.

    Another reason why I prefer the current airing order than the chronological order which would show Haruhi growing more mature in each episode. Either way, both viewing order would still be quite enjoyable to watch since Haruhi continues to show her flashes of her megalomaniac side every now and then.

  28. WOW… kyoto animation is now my goddess studio…
    DID YOU SEE THE GUITAR AND DRUMS PERFECTLY SYNCED!? the camera swerving, haruhi’s sweat, nagato’s finngers, the bass and drums… kick soo much A**.
    They got the facial extressions of screaming haruhi just right too.
    The different haruhi did bother me, but we all know she didnt change too much (thanks episode skipping!) but i still enjoyed the pouty face of haruhi when she took the grass leaf off her face. (dont know bout you guys… but… MOE!)
    I WANT NAGATO YUKI… she has been getting more and more awesome every episode…
    alas, bit short on mikuru-meido, but i was pretty satified with LOL FANG-TAN’s great appearence. (only dissappointment: no “Ah-Gah-To” arigato)
    and i also noticed Kyon’ssarcasm on all cylinders (lol at the distribution of change “He’s sharp”)
    I applaud you jason, for your great blogging… my kyon of anime, alas, i wont be able to make you uncomfortable to talk to your face 2 inches away. You have made my voyage through this series more insightful, enightinging, but mostly goddamn funny. Let us hope for the last episode leave us with a reoccurence of multiple haruhigasms to stain our keyboards forever. FUMOFFU!


  29. “Kyon: “You’re not used to being appreciated by other people. You’re always doing things that wouldn’t get a ‘thank you’.” (He’s being nice… “You’re always selfish!”) After Kyon speaks, it’s like Haruhi snaps back to normal”

    I got the impression that this was all interior monologue on Kyon’s part, rather than anything he said out loud.

  30. Did the lyrics to the music sound like what was going on in the anime and stuffo? i dunno

  31. Only one complaint to another great episode: The music score shown could not match the actual music in the performance. It actually looked like a full orchestral score instead of 4 member band score. I have no idea what the orchestra was playing when Kyon walked into the auditorium.

  32. Wacthing Haruhi-sama grow up and be humble was beautiful it would have brought a tear to my eye if I had any left to give. Having babe magnet Itsuki is not so implausible we do have fruit flies in society right, besides he’s just a parody of all bishi actors.

    LOL-Fang-tan was great I love her hair toss. I just wish Haruhi drafted the band as well and LOL-Fang-tan. Great music ensemble cast sure fire win. Grass in face Haruhi-sama was kawaii.

  33. Rejoice! Bunnygirl Haruhi returns!
    And now we got another thing to add to Haruhi’s repoirtoir (in addition to supreme fleet commander, supreme director, supreme detective, supreme club leader, and Goddess): rockstar
    Though she I hate to admit this, she didn’t look too good in some of the close-ups from while she’s singing… it’s about *this* close away from becoming a emo contortion.
    When I first watched the episode raw, I had no idea what Itsuki’s play was suppose to be about. After watching the fansubs, I still have no idea what the play was suppose to be about.

    2 questions for the in-the-know regarding this ep:
    1. I noticed LOL-FAN-TAN added “nyorou” to the end of one of her lines for seemingly just sort of out of the blue… is there a reason for that?
    2. Did the instrumental that the orchestra was performing before Haruhi’s live sounded really famaliar… or is it just me?

  34. Itsuki was performing in a translation of Tom Stoppard’s play “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead”, an excellent but strange story about two minor characters in Hamlet.

    The scene we see is about Guildenstern attempting to explain why he’s flipped a coin 30ish times in a row and gotten heads every time.

    There’s a pretty good movie version, with Gary Oldman and Tim Roth.

    More information:

  35. Every time I think Kyo has made “the best episode yet” they outdo themselves the next week. LOL-FANG, waitress Mikuru, the stunned faces of the movie club, the concert, OMG the concert!! I couldn’t believe they had the animation synched, and made it sound just like it was in an auditorium. And a human Haruhi! Shy! Needing Kyon for support!

    I didn’t know what to think; for the first part of the concert, I thought perhaps Kyon was dreaming. Especially with Haruhi acting so abnormal. She’s used to being the center of attention in an entirely different way.

  36. The first song was incredible. Aya Hirano is just… wow.

    I thought I was watching an alternate world version of SHnY. Haruhi was incredibly flustered during the entire concert and when she was talking with the ENOZ members. Really cute.

    This was a rather slow episode IMO, concert notwithstanding. Very To Heart-ish, I think. In that its school life, a minor conflict happends and then the episode is how the protagonists react to it. Very nice.

    Regarding the whole concert, KyoAni’s now just showing off. Insane detail. Something Sunrise can only dream about.

    Mikuru and Tsuruya were incredibly hawt this ep. I think LOL-FANG-TAN has just overtaken Shion/Mion as the hottest green haired chick this season. crazed killers. I think we need a poll on this. hawtest green haired character. LOL-FANG-TAN would just sweep.

  37. >>> I noticed LOL-FAN-TAN added “nyorou” to the end of one of her lines for seemingly just sort of out of the blue… is there a reason for that?

    I suspect it’s most likely a colloquial or popular Japanese ending phrase added for emphasism and rhyme. Much like our English equivalent phrase “No way, José”. It’s also probably part of her idiosyncratic speech patterns.

  38. Note to Kyon: keep your little sister away from Itsuki.
    Ain’t gonna happen. Itsuki’s fruitier than Carmen Miranda’s hat.
    Unless she chops her hair like Kyon’s and develops a slender teenage boy’s frame, she’ll get no lovin’ from Itsuki.

  39. Urgh… eyes nearly burst from gorging on the SHaruhi General Discussion thread in one go.

    An interesting trivia.

    Reason 22062006 why fans say KyoAni has too much time on their hands, and why we love them for it.

  40. Argh! I gave the wrong link! This should be the correct link.

    Reason 22062006

  41. Man, the full version of the song is okay, but… I have a burning need for the live version of God Knows… I heard in the episode.

  42. This episode makes the Macross 7 referance last episode so awesome– it bridged the space fighting of episode 11 with the singing of episode 12! Brilliant!

    >>>People at 2ch were saying that during the concert(especially when using close up views such as Nagato playing the guitar & Haruhi’s *dreadful* look) frame rate increases to 24fps, typical OVA frame rate(so if you slow down the clip, you can still see Nagato tapping the guitar with her fingers, instead of some blurry frames); if that’s true then KyoAni really puts a lot of thought in promoting this single.

    It’s called animating “On the ones” in the animation biz. Movies run at 24fps. Something like a Warner Bros’ cartoon is usually animated “On the two”s, or a change in movement every two frames. Disney animation is always “On the ones” or every frame is a new drawing. Most anime seems to be more on the order of “threes”, due to it’s veeeery budget atmosphere.

    What’s consistantly impressed me about Haruhi, though, is its use of motion and timing. Anime usually just moves, y’know? That is, the movement has very little character to it; instead, the still poses and expressions are expected to convey the emotion. But KyoAni in Haruhi has used more and better timing than I’ve ever seen in an anime before… even better than, say, Akira or everything but a Miyazaki film.

    That isn’t to say they too don’t flub– the ED dance at the very end is absolutely hideous animation-wise– but Haruhi’s singing was a goddamn PERFORMANCE. It was beautiful.

  43. Win and gold, simply win and gold. There was a point when I was wondering if Haruhi was really *that* great, but now I’m wondering which show I’ll have to drop from my top 5 list to make room.

    Wontek: “Only one complaint to another great episode: The music score shown could not match the actual music in the performance. It actually looked like a full orchestral score instead of 4 member band score.”

    I’m not sure how you mean that. The music in front of Haruhi was certainly written for a single instrument and my understanding is that if ENOZ used a even a relativly simple computer program they could print out sheet music pretty easily.

    Usually for bands like this they’d just all memorize the song, but Haruhi had just learned the song and I guess she didn’t have the confidence to go in without it. Of course, she never looked at it once during the whole concert (yeah, I watched to check – like I actually needed much excuse to rewatch this part another time).

  44. >>Usually for bands like this they’d just all memorize the song, but Haruhi had just learned the song and I guess she didn’t have the confidence to go in without it. Of course, she never looked at it once during the whole concert (yeah, I watched to check – like I actually needed much excuse to rewatch this part another time).>>

    They do show her glancing at the music, but only once (right at the beginning of the first song).

    The concert happens in a slightly different way in the novel. First of all, the band has only three members. The singer/lead guitarist is sick with tonsilitis, same as the anime. The fourth band member isn’t injured because she doesn’t exist. Haruhi agrees to take the lead singer’s place (just like the anime) but she doesn’t think she can learn the vocal parts to four songs (instead of the two in the anime) AND the lead guitar at the same time, all within an hour of practice. So she tracks down Yuki and has her learn the guitar part.

    So during the concert Yuki has a guitar just like the anime. Haruhi does not. She has to read the music as she sings because she doesn’t have the words memorized yet. Basically she just stands there like a stick reading the music (a stick in a bunny suit), not even looking out at the audience.

    KyoAni changed a lot of the details of the scene, a little unusual since they have stuck very close to the novels most of the time. I’m guessing they made the changes just to make the scene more visually exciting. I’m glad they let Haruhi rock out a bit.

  45. To Sphinx: This was addressed earlier. KyoAni changed the band member from 3 in the novel to 4 in the anime as a tribute to ZONE. Scroll up for more detail.

    To me of course: Yah, the second half of God Knows… reminded me IMMEDIATELY of that ‘incident’ in the end of novel 1.

  46. TheGreatMrChibi wrote:
    “the ED dance at the very end is absolutely hideous animation-wise”

    Blasphemy! Someone call the SOS police!

  47. “Fencedude Says:
    June 20th, 2006 at 11:40:20 PM
    This was the best concert ever in an anime. Even outdoing dedicated music shows like Full Moon and Beck.”

    Actually the anime concert ever would have to be Lynn Menmei form Macross the Movie: Do You Remeber Love.

    I love this Ep12 and the music lets pay a bit more attentation to anime made before 2000.

  48. deep down that costume raper/megalomaniac still lurks and can surface any minute. Ticking time bomb of fun.

    As Gary Becker once said, it’s more interesting to look conventional on the outside but think unconventional inside.

    Xeifa: I noticed LOL-FAN-TAN added “nyorou” to the end of one of her lines

    My reaction was “Is that a Keroro Gunso reference?” as one of the Keronian’s natural enemies is the moisture-sucking nyororos.

  49. And no metion of Hard Gay appearing.

    Sad, ain’t it?

  50. The guy at KyoAni who chose Kanon over Haruhi, must be rolling all over the floor right now!

    We need more Witch Yuki (the costume really suits her!) and make Tsuruya an offical SOS Brigade Member.

  51. it may just be me but, in an ealier/later episode, doesn’t yuki make a quick glance to a guitar in the clubroom?

  52. This episode wins best episode of anything of the year.

    I want more Yuki guitar playing action. She is my bishie. Hahahahahahaha. :'(

    They was Yuki was telling fortunes was awesome. Mikuru would have been cute and stammering, but that is fail next to an up to the second rundown from Nagato-chama.

  53. I have to say, I was very, very impressed by this episode. Given the responses by others here, I have to admit that I envy them a bit, since I don’t have the opportunity to hear it, due to my deafness. But what the show lacked in sounds for me, it blew me away with animation quality and attention to detail.

    I watched the music scene twice – and it’s probably the first time that I actually paid any attention to the lyrics, and I’ll have to rewatch the scene and I’m not exactly good at lip-reading, but I had an impression that the lips were in sync with the words. Now that’s some serious attention to detail! The close-up of Haruhi, with her shining eyes (I keep thinking of Shana anime and Shana’s crisp glowing eyes), and her expressions (I had flashbacks of the Akira anime movie, oddly enough), I couldn’t keep my eyes off her due to her intensity. (Well, the bunny suit probably helped a bit ;P)

    When I first saw Haruhi step on the stage, I had thought she was going to do some kind of promotion for her movie, and that there would be a stir among the school because of it. Well, she DID cause a stir, but it was for a different reason. I really liked seeing Haruhi being a regular girl, non-maniac person in this episode. Shows that despite her personality, she’s still same as anybody else.

    And I suspect that the reason why ENOZ’s originals were very popular was due to Haruhi unknowningly using her powers to make it possible. If she can make Espers, time-travellers, and aliens a reality, then surely it wouldn’t be unfeasible for her to maniuplate the popularity of ENOZ’s originals. She wanted to help the group out, and unknowningly used her powers to make it happen.

    Jason, I’d wondered about the MDs as well myself. I don’t recongize that term – ‘Music Discs’? Or something else?

    In any case, I really loved this episode. Definitely my favorite now, in addition to Day of Sagittarius and Someday in Rain episode.

  54. MD=MiniDiscs by sony.

  55. MD were (are?) supposedly fairly common in Japan as a form of digital medium. The Japanese abroad student in my class had them, too.

    To Dark Alpha: Regarding why the ENOZ’s original were so popular, the anime didn’t exactly mention it, but the novel addressed it FULLY. Basically this is the novel’s explanation: the band + Haruhi/Yuki’s performance totally swept the audience off their foot (like in the anime), yet there was this tiny sense/tingling of awkwardness (Kyon mentioned this and assumed some others felt the same), and as the performance went on (in the novel, they performed more than just 2 songs), the small sense of awkwardness accumulated. Before the last song, Haruhi finally paused and gave that same announcement as in the anime. That’s when Kyon and everyone else finally realized why it was awkward: the intricate difference between the rhythm of the two band members and Haruhi/Yuki. Because Haruhi/Yuki were make-shifts who had to learn in a short time and wing it, they could not achieve the total sync with Mai and Mizuki that a band after countless hours of practice together would. So, despite Haruhi and Yuki’s VALIANT efforts, there were very small discrepencies that the audience picked up subconsiciously but couldn’t quite identify. With that announcement, all that confusion was relieved/cleared up for Kyon and co. And they then think: if the songs are THIS good with make-shift members, then the songs performed by the ACTUAL members would be even better!

    – That’s the novel’s explanation on why ENOZ’s originals were so popular.

  56. OK, I have to ask; Where can I get the Haruhi novels translations? Please, I just have to read them, since, for what I have read here, the anime won’t cover the whole story (time constrains, I know).

    Thanks in advance.

  57. ” the ED dance at the very end is absolutely hideous animation-wise– ”

    Dear TheGreatMrChibi,

    My seconds will be calling upon you shortly. As the challenged, you have your choice of weapons.

    Ubu Roi


  58. first off, thx so much jason for the easy links to the singles so quickly after they come out

    and wow…haruhi…is everything. i mean, i think we’ve already covered this with how SHnY covers all the genres like the sports genre, scifi spaceship genre, mystery whudunit genre, etc. and then its not like these are all glossed over, each genre is portrayed exceptionally well. now we have the song genre…and wow…paragon concert that puts Full Moon wo Sagashite to shame (altho i’d have to say that’s not too difficult). beautiful, just beautiful…enjoyed every moment of this concert and i even clapped at the end. ^-^

    >>I can’t wait for Ayu to do this after Junichi picks on her,

    pst…Yuuichi ;)

  59. sry for double post, i should also mention that Haruhi’s character seems to have gone through tremendous development from the beginning of the series. from invincible god-girl, to now someone who’s human and vulnerable…someone once mentioned that in anime, as opposed to american cartoons, “it’s not how clark kent become superman, but how superman becomes clark kent.” This series is a prime example of that, and i love it.

  60. My posts keep getting eaten up :(

    Hard Gay was in this ep? Where? And Minmei has nothing on Haruhi. Haruhi’s a deity. Minmei’s just shrill and annoying.

    This ep has to have been the greatest anime concert ever. I don’t think any other anime had the production quality to top it. As for impact, maybe other concerts were more important to the story, but I’m nearly sure this one had the most impact on the audience.

  61. I’m at work and so unable to get the exact time for Hard Gay’s appearance but it’s less than a minute after the ED and very obvious. Kyon is walking around in the school hallways and gets grabbed by Hard Gay and what looks like a heavy set woman in a pink dress. Hard Gay has an arm around Kyon and posing and Kyon’s trying to get away.

    I guess the woman is from a series of commercials on Japanese TV, don’t know any more about her than that.

  62. To zero,


  63. Did anyone catch the fact that Itsuki is ‘The Player’ in the play ‘Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead’ during this ep? The play is a satire on fatalism. ‘The Player’ in the play knows what is going on, yet allows things to happen as they should, even though he has the power to influence what happens to the main characters. He only provides enough information to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern when he knows it is his time to move the plot/future along. Itsuki is a mirror of ‘The Player’ in many ways regarding to the part he plays in Haruhi.

    (Quote from wikipedia about the questions raised in the play) “Free will vs. determinism – is it their choice to perform actions, or are they fated to live the way they do? The implication the play gives is that it does not matter what choices Rosencrantz and Guildenstern make, they are trapped within the logic of the play, and cannot escape, being fated to follow a destiny determined by the plot. Hamlet ends with the news of their deaths, so they have to die.””

    When I saw Itsuki playing that part, I almost died laughing, I mean the people who are bringing us Haruhi have written/produced a deep, deep nest of easter eggs, red herrings, and cross references like nothing I have ever seen!

  64. References like the above let you know how much The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya rocks. And make me realize how stupid I am. (Or that I should read more)


  65. I hate Hard Gay. Of all personalities, why must he be the one to appear in this episode? At least I don`t have to hear his lame “FOO〜!” thing. That would really get on my nerves.
    I think MD is still the mainstream media for indie recordings. Unlike in other countries where it`s never successful, it`s quite common in Japan. You could get one from a nearby 100 yen shop. Of course, the trend for nowadays would be iPod, me having so many friends around starting to get one for themselves. I hope I don`t have to be one of them.
    I wonder just how much influence ZONE had over Japan. I heard of one Shougi Pro trying to finish his game quickly to catch up with their final concert.
    I`d say this would come after episode 11 in my list of the best anime airs. The whole series being so high quality I don`t even mind about it being only 14 episodes.
    Oh, only 2 episodes to go. Ever discussed about life after Haruhi?

  66. Sorry Jesterman, I’m pretty sure Itsuki was playing Guildenstern. Check the IMDB quotes page.

    syock, what do you mean life after Haruhi? Our world began with the premiere episode and it will end in 2 weeks. :)

  67. >>Our world began with the premiere episode and it will end in 2 weeks.

    Don’t you mean three years ago? *wink*

  68. Any episode with witch-costume Yuki is an A-plus-plus for me. As someone on another site pointed out, she’s Slash with a pointier hat! Oh, right, and about a hundred times cuter, too.

  69. After an exhausting, heart-straining, intensive 3 minutes of research of the term, “Nyoro nyoro” it seems to be the Japanese onomatopoeia of something wiggling, slithering or squirming (like a snake or tadpole). From that, “nyoro” can also be used in place of “tilde”~~~ such as how it can be called “the squiqqle thing” or whatever.

    So yeah, she could just be saying the colloquialism for the tilde out loud. Or something else entirely. (cute in any case!)

  70. syock:
    No. I haven’t.

    Oh man, I can’t think of another anime series that will make me happy as SHnY…
    Anyone have any info if KyoAni will make any sequels?
    I just noticed that the eyes in SHnY are really good. They arent plain, but not too detailed. Of course, they still are big (it anime for goodness sake) but they dont over do it. My compliments (again) to the producers.

    *goes to the newfound site of SHnY novels*
    Symmetry: Thanks!

  71. the orignal version of “God knows…” , recycling materials from ep12

    note the missing harmony in the “live” version

  72. Okay, to defend myself about the end animation– I’m not criticising the end itself– it’s fun as hell. I’m not criticizing the dance– that’s fun as hell, too. But whenever the full SOS-dan are gathered and dancing, they move in a very fast, stilted manner. It’s just not good animation wise! Does it move? Sure. But does it move *well*, that’s the question.

  73. The wind orchestra piece that was being played as Kyon entered the auditorium is supposedly an original arrangement of Kaze no Mai (Dancing in the Wind) by Y.Fukuda. Info gotten from 4chan.

  74. To korockid: Well, the pretty eyes are Ito Noizi’s style (see: Shakugan no Shana), but yes, KyoAni have done a good job faithfully reproducing his designs and artstyle (with the exception of Asakura; KyoAni completely butchered Ryoko until the episode she died).

    As for a second season, I don’t think KyoAni made any official announcements yet, but judging by the popularity of Haruhi and that there are PLENTY of stories left in the novels for a second season, there *should* be a second season.

    Some of the stuffs left out:


    …the very important time travel #1, the world reset + time travel #2, and the eventual time travel #3 that serve as the main storyline as well as LOADS of short stories that develop everyone member in SOS-dan (though I’d say Itsuki often gets shafted in this regard; even Tsuruya has brighter moments overall). Have you wondered how Haruhi asks for “Aliens, Time Travellers, Sliders, and Espers” during the first introduction but later on rarely mentions “sliders” even though she obviously considers it an equal member of the “interesting” quadfecta? Why does Haruhi let Kyon join her club of eccentrics, and why does Haruhi asks Kyon if she had met him somewhere before? Or why someone as smart and gifted as Haruhi goes to this normal school that doesn’t even have interesting clubs? What happens if Yuki malfunctions? Are there forces in play interested in Haruhi & gang that rival Yuki and her bosses? Does Yuki ever get bored of her job/personality and do something about it? Will Mikuru ever realize Kyon’s feelings for her? Will Tsuruya and Haruhi ever tag-team for super Haruhigasm? All of these are in the novels but not going to be included in the anime (if still only 14 episodes), so I’d dare say there will most definitely be a second season barring some catastrophic calamity.


  75. Saku Says: “KyoAni have done a good job faithfully reproducing his designs and artstyle”

    Noizi Ito is a woman. :3

  76. To t3h Dave: Ugh, now that you’ve mentioned it, I think she IS female. Man, I keep getting these artists’ genders mixed up… last time I said Takahito Narada was female. >_>

  77. My opinion: Haruhi rocks harder than HIGH AND MIGHTY COLOUR. Especially God Bless.

  78. >>I want more Yuki guitar playing action

    Yuki in that outfit playing the guitar was the coolest thing I’ve seen on the series so far.

  79. “Agree’s with Squid Man.”

    All i could say is, “WOW” and another thing is “Melancholy of Haruhi is another great animation besides FMP,Naruto and others”

  80. >All i could say is, “WOW” and another thing is “Melancholy of Haruhi is another great animation besides FMP,Naruto and others”

    One of those 3 you listed is not like the other two. Which is which?

  81. This episode was just…wow. When the end credits began rolling, it was like I was hit in the head with a bat of realization. “Holy shit. This series is big. Like real big. Like really really huge!”

    I began watching this thinking that it was just another ordinary slice-of-life + crazy girl that believes in aliens anime, if there has ever been one. Let me tell you though, I was wrong.

    This series has got a great storyline, great characters, great animation, plus all the little details that make an anime REALLY great.

    I knew the show was funny, and I knew it was cute, and I knew that Haruhi was Haruhirific, and that Mikuru was +10 adorable, but I never thought it would be able to compete with my top five favorites. Who would ever think that this little series could compete with NGE?!

    As it stands, my favorites are:
    1. Neon Genesis Evangelion
    2. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
    3. Cowboy Bebop
    4. FLCL
    5. The Cat Returns

    Sorry, I still love Neon Genesis Evangelion just a tad more. +55 – Asuka’s personality.

    I love how Kyon is just awe-struck throught Haruhi’s entire performance. And I love how at first the people in the crowd are looking at each other, wondering if they are supposed to cheer.

    +90 – Those people that begin cheering first. Lead dogs. Lead dogs.

    +350 – Kyoto Animation. Period.
    +65 – KyoAni’s attention so detail.
    +60 – Drops of sweat on Haruhi’s chin.
    +90 – Aya Hirano’s awesome talent. She sings incredibly. Bravo, Aya ‘no. Bravo.
    +130 – Haruhi singing her heart out.
    +85 – Haruhi and buny costume. She’s smokin’ in that thing.
    +175 – The combination of Yuki, Yuki’s witch costume, Yuki’s bitchin’ ‘SkEElZ’, and a Guitar. No mistake. One. Seventy. Five.
    +65 – Haruhi facial distortions. Awesome.
    +395 – KyoAni took the time and effort to actually have the characters play their instruments, and not just strum randomly so it ‘looks’ like they are playing. You know what I mean?
    +270 – Just for the animation of Yuki’s fingers, Mizuki’s drums sticks, and Mai’s fingers on the bass.
    +100 – Cuteness! Haruhi for being to shy to talk to the band members alone.
    +120 – Cuteness x10! Haruhi for throwing grass into the wind and have it hit her in the face. Then the face she makes!
    +270 – Haruhi likes Kyon. Notice how she grabbed his HAND itsead of his wrist or tie? Adorable x10!
    +2265 – Great episode.

    I know. Pretty high score? Episode 22 of Neo Genesis Evangelion, ‘Don’t Be’, scored 7200+.

    Whatever. Anyway. Bed time.


  82. Well the concert part was quite good for this episode.
    But compare to BECK it still lacks a lot.

    Anyway this is Haruhi, it is good but the story’s dragging?
    apprantly 2 ep left onli…….

  83. Did I watch a bootleg version of BECK or something, or did I watch a soup’d up version of ep12? >_>

    The story may seem dragging to some because KyoAni is leaving one of the key storyline events for the finale. So, instead of STORYLINE STORYLINE SIDESTORY SIDESTORY SIDESTORY SIDESTORY SIDESTORY STORYLINE, they’re mixing it up. Also, KyoAni isn’t going to include main major storyline parts in this season.

  84. >>Animanga Hound

    HAHAH I love your scale/point system for episode rating :3

    Your top 5 animes are pretty much my favorites also, with the exception of the fact that I haven’t seen The Cat Returns

  85. just so you guys don’t get the wrong idea, Itsuki was not playing the Player in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. In fact, he was Guildenstern. Why? because Guildenstern wears green, and Rosencrantz red. That’s a given. At that point, Guildenstern was simply ranting about the law of probability.

    Also, if he was the Player, where are his cohorts? (I was the Player, so I should know)

  86. Whoops I was late eh

  87. That episode really rocks!!!;)

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