you were there? always.

I’m enjoying Zan. While I’m not enjoying how Koyomi keeps slipping into the Zetsubou voice thus making my eye twitch, I’m still enjoying Zetsubou-sensei. Between ZSZS and Ghostory, Shaft dominates the mind share this summer.


Loved Rin in her golf outfit. I think because golf is a game dominated by old men, seeing nubile, hawt skilled-in-the-trade young women in golf just makes them disproportionately hawter.


The final version of Apple Picking Beam… I’m not convinced anymore that the animators at Shaft are licking toads and doing LSD. That’s just too tame. They’ve obviously stumbled across some sort of new, powerful, 21st century psychedelic. And they’re not sharing it with us except in anime form.


I have no clue how through the seasons, Chiri morphed from precision girl to Yuno from Mirai Nikki. I’d say more, but I’m terrified of her shovel. Chiri would be sitting in the deluxe seats on the crazy train with Rena, Shion, Mion, Yuno, Senjougahara, Haruhi, and “I need to mate” Horo.

(And, yes, I’d like to expand on this crazy train idea. Who else should be riding on it?)


And if you ever wondered, “Hey, what happens if they use the style for Bakemonogatari‘s ED for a solid twelve minutes?” you have to watch episode 8. It’s like being setup for a blind date… and when you finally meet her, she’s hawt. She’s also missing an arm. But she’s still hawt. Yet missing an arm. Similar feeling.


Kiri and Matoi’s struggle… love their strife over Itoshiki. Kiri / Matoi / Zetsubou-sensei is honestly a more interesting and more explosive love triangle than Ranka / Sheryl / Alto.


More jabs at Kyoto (but still nothing on Endless Eight, unless I missed a sight gag, which is 200% possible), including the girls fighting over who can become the personification of Kyoto-tan. I’d vote for Meru, just because Endless Eight felt like a vicious, mean-spirited 192 minute text message.

(Though I liked Shaft pining for more Nadesico… would you watch a Nadesico remake by Shaft? I would. In a cocaine heartbeat.)


We don’t blink or flinch at sight gags in Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei. That’s why I was kinda puzzled how gaijin 4koma ended up in Bakemonogatari (to good effect, *high fives Shaft*) but then I realized… it’s Shaft. Shaft being Shaft isn’t a bad thing. Like how even though Manny has plenty of weird kinks, he’s still a premier slugger. Sometimes, because of the goofiness Shaft brings, we forget that Shaft too is a premier studio. When they want to be.

18 Responses to “you were there? always.”

  1. I love shaft.
    If it were NBA players representing anime studios who would you pick for Shaft?
    I’d say Steve Nash.
    Both are critically acclaimed, have their share of fans and critics, have never won a title and have moments where you shake your head and think why?
    Like Shaft being Shaft and Steve Nash making a behind the back pass in the lane between Manu and Bowen in the playoffs.

  2. This post missed a few very good things about ZSZS: it’s not Haruhi Endless Eight – they can reuse gags (the dog with a stick up its arse, Matoi responding ‘Always’ once an episode)… and that sight gag of the Koyomi/Nozomu doujin Harumi had when he stated he was afraid he was becoming less fond of women…

    It’s not the funniest, but it sure as hell beat Haruhi out of the water. What a disappointing entry there.

  3. >>Shaft being Shaft isn’t a bad thing.

    After all that bitching, you’re finally on the winning team. Let’s face it, SHAFT has made a lot of seriously good shows in recent years, Maria Holic, Zetsubou Sensei, Bakemonogatari, Ef, and Hidamari. Shaft being Shaft is part of what made those shows great. I would totally bang Shaft if Shaft was some sort of attractive woman (maybe even if it wasn’t).

    Anywhoos, this season of Sensei has been brilliant. Not a single bad or boring episode yet, they just keep getting better. Every character has gotten a good amount of time each (with the exception of Chie) to do their thing. And the crazier Chiri gets, the happier I am.

  4. If you think Manny is still a slugger, you haven’t been watching him lately. He’s been pretty terrible since he stopped taking female hormones *cough*

    I can’t believe SHAFT is now our standard of excellence… T___T SHAFT is king and KyoAni is the punching bag… feel like I’m in Bizzarro World, where people are genderswapped, only senior military officials can pilot giant combat robots, love trianges are settled by somebody making a f***ing decision in the first episode, and this blog fits every post into the length of a twitter tweet.

  5. I believe Osaka wants to ride the train. Shaft + AzuDai’s Osaka would spawn pretty babies.

  6. “But still nothing on Endless Eight, unless I missed a sight gag, which is 200% possible”
    The Endless Eight is mentioned on the Train. When the two Otakus are discussing whether one of them should drop the anime or not. Haruhi’s face pops up in amongst the mini pics of panty shots around the Otaku. Indeed, the two Otaku were talking abut Endless Eight.

  7. Kafuka may be the conductor on the Crazy Train.

  8. ruffles:I would totally bang Shaft if Shaft was some sort of attractive woman

    Shaft as a woman would definitely have one arm. And attention deficit disorder.

    Love the dolls.

  9. …and it’s good that Jason has finally seen the light on Shaft being Shaft. Even when it’s a failure, it’s generally weird, but usually interestingly weird.

  10. I wonder why this show hasn’t been picked up for dubbing….

  11. … wait. Who could do this correctly.

  12. I nominate Boxcutters Kaede for the crazy train. And the responses to this post finally have some good YTAMR candidates.

  13. flcldaniel said: “If it were NBA players representing anime studios who would you pick for Shaft?”

    I know who I’d pick for KyoAni. Haruhi S1 was the equivalent of dropping 13 points in the last 35 seconds on the defending world champs. Then…Endless Eight…

  14. And if you ever wondered, “Hey, what happens if they use the style for Bakemonogatari’s ED for a solid twelve minutes?” you have to watch episode 8.

    Twelve minutes wouldn’t be enough. A dozen twelve minutes wouldn’t be enough. Another season of Kaiba in that style wouldn’t be enough. Hajime Ueda finishing Q-ko-chan wouldn’t be enough.
    …dammit, now I’m depressed.

  15. Please excuse me. I should have said: “…dammit, now I’m in despair

  16. @ quigonkenny

    I think Haruhi could be Amare Stoudemire. S1 was Amare’s first couple of years. Then came the knee injury, the lack of defense, inability to lead a team, and a season ending eye injury. That was the years of wait between S1 and S2 combined with Endless Eight. But the potential is still there, Amare is only 26 and Haruhi still has great source content.
    (I really like the Suns)

  17. I heard you had a sister…..
    The ultimate in order has a slob of a sister? Yes please!

  18. So… Bakemonogatari episode ten evidently falls down a bit in the quality department.

    But never mind that. I didn’t realize the “crazy train” was actually mentioned in that sequence of ZSZS. Jason clearly pays more attention to these things than I do.

    And thanks for calling my attention to the Nadesico shout-out on the blackboard. Yes. Though if a three-year delay in Haruhi gets us Endless Eight, what would an eleven-year gap in Nadesico entail? But Nadesico by SHAFT would be dazzling.

    I’d also like SHAFT to branch out from light-novel territory and tackle something like Master and Margarita. They would be perfect for it. It would be perfect for them.

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