“They were cat ears. Cute cat ears were poking out of Hanekawa’s head. I bit my lip in silence. I bit my lip hard enough to make it bleed so I wouldn’t laugh. Don’t laugh– I had to be serious. I absolutely couldn’t laugh. It’d be like something from a gag comic. If I were to break down laughing after she told me this with a serious look on her face. I can’t do that. I told her I wouldn’t. But those cat ears. They went so well with her trimmed bangs. It’s like they were made for her. I had the same thought during Golden Week. She’s the kind of woman who was born to wear cat ears. On the other hand, during the Golden Week Nightmare, she didn’t have them when she was Hanekawa. So this just blows me away. Body. Right now, her ears and the fur are black like her hair.”
(You know who else was born to wear cat ears? Her.)
Notice the shape of the cloud above
Nadeko Hanekawa. Shaft’s been putting up a clinic with Bakemonogatari. It’s not even funny. It’s like they’re Carmelo at the beginning of the 2009 NBA season. (Or, I guess, Carmelo is like Shaft during the start of this NBA season.) I have to commend Shaft for not condensing everything into 12-13 episodes to fit a time slot but instead giving Tsubasa Cat some room to breathe and to live on as a web series. I also like how they postponed this episode to, presumably, work it up to higher standards. Bravo. They need to make more decisions like these and less decisions like, “Mmm… maybe we’ll stick Mesousa into Negima’s class.” or “This show is great, but you know what it really needs? Images of real life gravure models being stapled! Quick, let’s get our intern on this ASAP!”
Aww, how sweet. He’s thinking of the darling night he spent with his girlfriend.
(Obviously, this is also Ken’s default face for Seitokai no Ichizon. It’s definitely, a “harem end or bust!” scenario for both, methinks… just Koyomi can’t publicly admit it yet.)
As awesome as that smile was for Senjougahara, he has an even bigger smile upon spying poor Mayoi-chan. We all know exactly which way Arararagi swings.
I definitely can say that this isn’t a series to be enjoyed as a low quality webcast. Shaft’s visually appealing art for this series requires the high definition treatment. I dunno… after being treated to a Senjougahara/Mayoi/Kanbaru/Nadeko/Hanekawa feast in 1080p, can I really go back to a poorly encoded webcast? And, yes, I just wrote “Shaft’s visually appealing art”… maybe in 2010, I’d write “Sunrise’s solid, logical, and well-written finale for Gundam 00“. Okay, maybe that’s a stretch.
(But who knows?)
(Also, notice how Koyomi’s agohe is sticking straight up.)
This will not end well.
(You know how CSI and NCIS have other franchises like CSI: Miami or NCIS: LA? Why isn’t there a Dateline: To Catch A Predator Tokyo? You’d think they’d have plenty of material to work with there.)
We’ve had appearances from all the past oddities except Kanbaru this arc. I wonder if Kanbaru is going to show up at a critical juncture and nail Hanekawa (or Araragi) with a basketball? I just hope she’s wearing a light blue meido outfit when she does it.
“You’re so damn cute! Lemme feel you up more! Lemme hug you to death! Lemme see your panties!”
I expected this.
(Much like how I expected Haruhi Suzumiya 2009 to not be able to live up to its hype, though Kyoto did help with the whole Endless Eight thing.)
Come on. Mayoi. Is this any way to treat your savior? Araragi only wanted to be friends with you, much like how Chizuru is friends with Aka-chan or how Shizuru is friends with Natsuki or how Shinji Ikari is friends with his right hand.
“Calm down. I’m not a molester.”
Yeah, I’m sold. Even though Koyomi gets excited around nakkid underaged girls, enjoys feeling up underaged girls, and gets more pumped up seeing an underaged girl than his hawt somewhat more legal girlfriend, because he said so, I’m going to believe that he’s not into molesting said underaged girls.
For a snail, she sure seems like a snake. Hiss~~~
(I’m watching game six of the World Series as I write this. I’m just amazed that Matsui drove in six runs, and Fox didn’t bring up the pr0n stash. This is a guy with a reported 55,000 piece pr0n collection and introduced his waifu as a sketch drawing. I guess my point is this… when I saw Matsui homer in the second, I had to google to make sure that sketch of his waifu didn’t look like an anime character.)
(And, really, how weird would it have been if she looked like Lum, per se?)
“Ah, it’s Muraragi-san!”
It’s official reached, “You were there?” “Always.” status. Andohbytheway, when does Mayoi greet him with an “Ah, it’s Loliraragi-con-san!”?
(Do you think if Koyomi watched Darker Than Black Gemini, he would root for or against Hei? On one hand, Hei abducted and felt up a loli. On the other hand, he’s been pretty abusive towards said loli. But we know one thing: he’d definitely cheer for the son of the bartender. And, yeah, it’s pretty weird seeing Hei do a complete character transformation… it’s like seeing Hanekawa with and without her cat ears. Oh wait, did I just do a circular reference?)
“I just thought that normally one would pick Hanekawa.”
I think I eventually need to do a Dr. Jack-style breakdown between Hanekawa and Senjougahara. Right now, I’d say Senjougahara is a bit in the lead since she seems more receptive to pervy kinks whereas Hanekawa seems like she’s going to scold you if you bring up, “Mmmm… maybe tomorrow night, can we try re-enacting episode one of Aoi Bungaku?”
(Crap. I’m only 600 words in, and I just lost all my readers. They’re all hitting TT trying to find Aoi Bungaku.)
“Above all, I like Senjougahara despite her personality.”
I think this is funny because, well, isn’t personality a big deal? What’s left? Her body? And would it be series end if Senjougahara were in earshot of it? At least cut to Senjougahara in the shower sneezing after he says it. Of course, Koyomi can’t say what he really wanted to say, “Above all, I like Senjougahara despite her not being in elementary school.”
Alright, how does Mayoi know about Shinobu if they never met, and she’s never gone over to Meme’s? Where the heck is this landscape in Japan? Utah or Nevada… maybe. Tokyo Prefecture… not so much. And why is there a random donut shop out there?
(One thing about the setting of Bakemonogatari… most anime take place either in some rural town a la Kanon or Saishuu Heiki Kanojo or a big city a la Railgun or Hayate, but Ghostory seems to take place in surburbia sprawl. There’s a lot of cars, roads, half-built rail systems, modern conformality… mmm… maybe Nishioihsin is making a statement. I just wish I knew what.)
(Oh, I know! He’s really into girls who wear thigh highs with bikinis… oh wait…)
“But the shock from being grabbed from behind by some random lolicon made me totally forget.”
I like how Muraragi’s ahoge stood up after she said that. It’s almost like he remembered something good.
That’s one slow moving cloud.
That’s a lot of bikes. A lot of bikes…
(Reminds me of the “We need guns” scene from the Matrix. Which is 10 years old now. Can you believe that the Matrix came out 10 years ago? Makes me feel old. Yet, I still watch animated stills featuring voluptuously drawn haremettes.)
There’s no doubt that Hanekawa is wearing cat-print pajamas with maybe some cat-print underwear. Zero. None.
I like how in this huge parking lot with so many bikes, there’s only Senjougahara and Koyomi. I like Senjougahara’s summer outfit (but it’s not as awesome as Seitokai‘s summer outfits), and I also like how terse she is with Koyomi after they’ve had a romantic moment. It’s definitely a buzz kill. She’s definitely the kind of person who would ask, “Did we have sex last night?” as an insult.
“After all, my seiyuu is excellent.”
I’ll forgive this Shaft being Shaft moment. I’m just glad they didn’t have Mesousa pop up from behind a bike or something.
(She definitely knows that he’s going to visit Hanekawa.)
“Hitagi-san, you’re so beautiful. You’re truly my one and only. I love you.”
I like how she completely tricked and trapped Koyomi with this line. I also like how detailed and luscious Shaft draws her lips. They’re honestly the second most detailed and luscious lips I’ve seen in anime this year.
(Needless. My gosh, Mad House blew out the budget animating the Pretty Girl Squad’s lips, asses, and underwear. So, of course, we all know who is in charge of Mad House: Koyomi Arararararagi.)
Um… were the Class Rep’s hopes and dreams this bountiful before? It’s either that the school uniform is completely unflattering, or turning into a cat supersizes ones hopes and dreams.
(That top button… it looks more strained than Arnold at a California budgetary meeting.)
Did she steal that beret from Nadeko? And, yeah, something must have gone horribly wrong for the normally ultra-reliable class representative to be skipping school and encouraging others to skip school just to have a chit-chat in a park. Wearing pajamas. With cat imprints. And possibly no bra.
Have I mentioned how much I’m enjoying the outfit choices for this series recently?
Koyomi just went from lusting after an elementary school girl to a pretty blah encounter with his girlfriend to lusting after the extremely filled-out class rep. He’s definitely checking her out. But I give him an A for effort for trying to get her to disrobe her jacket at the very least.
Dr. Jack says “Hanekawa.” That was fast.
(Come on. As awesome as Senjougahara’s seiyuu might be, we’re talking about Horie Yui here. I swear, that’s the deciding factor, not fuwa fuwa time.)
A melancholy Hanekawa is fine too. Andohbytheway, out of the 15,532 reboots, how many times did you think Mikuru showed up sobbing to Kyon wearing cat-imprinted pajamas?
She’s not wearing shoes, socks, or thigh highs? What the hell?
(For that show that basically boils down to “Koyomi meets hawtandorunderaged chix0r with issue. Koyomi introduces hawtandorunderaged chix0r to Meme, who resolves said issue. Cue The Story That You Don’t Know.” this is a pretty entertaining show.)
“Anime and manga make being a meido look easy. But, surprisingly, it’s a very hard job.”
Wait, what? I don’t think Maria has it easy at all! She has to babysit both Nagi and Hayate and somehow try to get Hermione to a score all the heroines ending. And Matsurika… she’s the judge of the vicious Mariya/Suzu wager as well as tormenter of Kanako. How’s that easy? Is it easy to babysit Shana, who troublesomely genderswaps for no good reason other than to fill pages in a book? Or Mahoro who has to come out of retirement because Gainax and Shaft needs cash? Toss in meido like Tachibana who have to work the night shift as assassins, well, it’s not easy. Hell, look at Ichigo, Ringo, and Sango and how much trouble they have keeping Taro-sama in bed. You think pulling off foursomes every night when the master only wants to bang the meido who was synthesized from DNA from his mom is easy?
(Needless to say, the meido revolution still goes strong.)
(Is Bakemonogatari on the short list of great anime that didn’t feature a meido?)
(And I just passed out envisioning nekomimi meido Hanekawa. Come on Nishioihsin. Do this for me. DO IT!)
Are radio shows popular in Japan? Who listens to radio outside of their car? I think hardly anyone in America listens to radio call-in shows that aren’t sports talk or political talk. Just scanning my radio dial, I find… Mexican music, Urban music, pop music, NPR (woefully out of place), more Mexican music, more Urban music, World Series wrap up, oldies, more Mexican music, the Kings game, more pop music, a refinance your mortgage radio infomercial, a classical station (woefully out of place), and a Christian station.
(Are Hanekawa and Natsumi Hinata the only two people who listen to radio shows where people read postcards that were mailed in? Like… seriously? Mail-in postcards? Is this 1980?)
And who rents videos from a video store? Both the Hollywood and Blockbuster near me closed a year ago. Redbox and Netflix 4tw! Okay, okay… Redbox, Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, and Bittorrent 4tw!
(I do like Hanekawa’s esoteric sense of humor. Compared to Hitagi’s verbal abuse… it’s like trying to decide between honey barbeque buffalo wings or super spicy buffalo wings. You’re not going to go wrong with either. Especially with blue cheese dressing.)
The lips are winning me over. Though I like how after Koyomi asks her to take off her hat, Hanekawa behaves as if he just asked her to unbutton the top button of her pajamas.
So Koyomi views Hanekawa as a kind savior. Senjougahara views Koyomi as a kind savior. Am I missing something here? Yeah, seriously, why didn’t Koyomi go for Hanekawa? I find this to be a flimsy attempt by Nishioihsin to cover this plot hole with Koyomi just accepting that Hanekawa might have turned him down… she’s counting on only you Koyomi to save her right now! Dumb ass! Just because she won’t throw herself on you like what Senjougahara does, it doesn’t mean Hanekawa would turn you down. I just felt they resolved the “Hanekawa or Senjougahara” question a bit too quickly; Hanekawa would have been a much easier get than Mayoi at the very least. Part of it might be Nishioihsin not realizing that this series would be popular and didn’t plan on it going to a seventh light novel.
(And Mayoi might really be his ideal haremette. That’s the greatest plot hole– how can Koyomi be seriously considered interested in either the amply developed Senjougahara or Hanekawa when he’s really just into washboards. OTL.)
(Wait, did I just criticize Nishioihsin’s writing? What the fuck is in this tea that I’m drinking?)
I like the cat gears reaching up and thusly replacing the cloud cat ears. Nice touch. I also like how there’s palatable sexual tension as Tsubasa removed her hat– the build up made it seem like Shannon Elizabeth taking off her top in American Pie. I’m also excited about long haired Hanekawa… you know when all those sexy librarian types let down their hair, only good things can happen.
Reminds me that anime is one of the few entertainment industries that rely pretty much solely on physical media revenue to keep going (they get very, very little for stream on Crunchyroll or Hulu). It’s unlike American broadcast media where commercials and syndication rights make up the bulk of the money. Unfortunately, physical media isn’t growing– depending on it is no different than automakers depending on huge SUVs. I think anime is going to go into a rough period as that industry doesn’t have a clue as to how to generate revenue outside of physical media.
One solution, I think, is what Code Geass tried, was ridiculed for, and wasn’t that unsuccessful: product placement. After all, we still remember their involvement with Pizza Hut. Like I would have Hanekawa munch on Doritos as she talked about her radio show… have Koyomi ride a Trek bike… replace his cell phone with a Motorola Droid… make Senjougahara’s father drive a Lexus with Senjougahara turning to the camera and extolling the benefits of the Lexus Hybrid Drive (a la Truman Show).
(And, of course, Kanbaru dry humping a Cheese-kun.)
“Soft… and ginormous!”
“Araragi-kun, we need to have a talk after we get off your lightweight, carbon fiber Trek bike.”
You know, I’ve watched a similar scene with Haruhi getting onto Kyon’s bike (I think 15,532 times, but I might be off), and I don’t remember Haruhi pressing herself against Kyon. Is that really necessary? Or is that more of statement of how much better endowed Hanekawa is over Haruhi?
He’s carrying Tsubasa, who is wearing her pajamas and forcing herself against his back. And he’s ditching a day of school. Luckiest. Guy. Since. That. Other. Male. Harem. Lead.
Ever notice how in Bakemonogatari there’s a lot of dialogue that happens during travels? Like there was a lot of dialogue when Hitagi and Koyomi first went to visit Meme (and she didn’t press herself against Koyomi’s back like the cat tramp). There was a lot of dialogue when Senjougahara, Araragi, and Mayoi were wondering lost like Republicans after the 2008 election. There was a lot of dialogue when they were walking Nadeko back to the snake shrine. Snakes? Why’d it have to be snakes? There was a lot of dialogue in the Lexus HX Hybrid. And now there’s a lot of dialogue in this idyllic bike ride.
(There’s no doubt in my mind that if Kyon had to carry Itsuki on the back of his bike, Itsuki would be pressing himself against Kyon’s back as well. For “stability” reasons. We can probably say the same thing about Nakameguro and Ken. If only people watched Seitokai. OTL.)
(There’s absolutely no one else in this anime besides the main characters. They bike for a while on this bridge, yet they never get passed by another car.)
“Sorry, I’m just teasing you.”
I like how vampires used to be campy Halloween characters and then because of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, they’ve becoming brooding sex objects. I’m sorry, Twilight, Buffy did that first. Followed by Angel (which was the high water mark for Charisma Carpenter‘s career). And now there’s all these rip-offs like the horrid CW show. But… in anime, vampires are something different. They’re like cool fighting machines a la the watchable Hellsing or the atrocious Black Blood Brothers or comedic mechanisms like the watchable Moon Phase or the not-so-atrocious Karin. Or both as in Araragi’s case.
(I wonder how many of my readers are thinking, “Wait, Koyomi’s special ability is to acquire a harem of lolis and physically/verbally abusive girls? Greatest. Power. Ever.” Frankly, I think this makes Koyomi much cooler than that other superhero with regenerative powers: Wolverine. Pfft. Anyone can be a grump. Not everyone can get girls to strip for them in their bedroom to show off snake marks.)
(The preview in front of episode one had previews of all the arcs… and it went Hitagi Crab, Mayoi Snail, Suruga Monkey, Nadeko Snake, Tsubasa Cat, and Koyomi Vamp. So we’re not getting Koyomi Vamp now? I want my Ghostory Aya Hirano OP!)
(And why is she credited for Shinobu when she hasn’t said anything yet? At least Rina Satou had occasional lines as Gekka Midarezaki.)
(Matsui won World Series MVP… for what? He was DH for the three games in New York and only pinch hit in Philly. I don’t think he out hit either A-Rod or Jeter, who would have been my pick. That’s like awarding Bakemonogatari MVP to Mayoi. Okay, she might be MVP in Koyomi’s books…)
I wonder how much Toyota would pay to replace this parking full with Camrys? Mmm…
(Hey, I think we’re headed there, especially if they can’t figure out a way to replace the revenue decline of DVD and Blu-Ray sales.)
I like how in the span of thirty seconds, Meme says, “Inchou-chan” roughly thirty-six times. He didn’t say “Nadeko-chan” that much nor “Tsundere-chan”. Well, at least we know Meme’s tastes now. I’m just glad he’s not into Koyomi. (Unless he’s tsundere for Koyomi… which… would really make Bakemonogatari a horror series.)
(What is he burning?)
Every time Koyomi runs to Meme to solve a problem, I think of Nobita running to Doraemon for help.
(Just to complete the circle, remember World Series MVP Hideki Matsui’s pr0n collection? That was mentioned in his Time Asia Heroes feature… which, I guess, is a natural place to mention a 55,000 piece pr0n collection. You know who else made it as a Time Asia Hero? Yes, that’s right– Doraemon.)
They’re traveling and talking again. I still don’t understand how does Meme get an endless supply of Hawaiian shirts… and that he looks more like a Californian wind boarder than a homeless Japanese guy. More importantly, notice as they walk, the designs on Meme’s shirt moves with him but the cat prints on Hanekawa’s epic pajamas don’t move correctly with respect to her movements.
Wow… he just smacked her. Though I did expect Meme to point out that it’s not the same as before since she has cat ears as Hanekawa… and that he’s probably doing this to bring out her troublesome cat.
(Troublesome cat sounds like a naughty euphemism, doesn’t it?)
I like the final bounce. Can Koyomi really be into both DFC and supersized melonpan at the same time?
“Don’t panic. You’re energetic today… is it because something happened? Something like seeing Inchou-chan in her pajama’s or seeing her cat ears? … If anything, you should be grateful I didn’t mention Inchou-chan hugging your back on the bike.”
If Meme has such awesome predictive abilities, why isn’t he trading stocks or something? Surely he could use such superpowers for monetary gain. And, really, this guy is fearsome, even if he looks like a homeless sex offender. Can you imagine the Japanese police running into Meme and questioning him, “Mmm… so you say you live in this abandoned school with this seven year old blonde child?”
“I guess what happened to Little Miss Shy was a good learning experience for you.”
Meme gives meme for all the haremettes in Koyomi’s stable, Sengoku, Senjougahara, Mayoi, Inchou-chan. I can’t wait to find out his meme for Koyomi’s sisters.
Well, if this leads to more girl on girl bloodsucking, I’m all for it. Anyway, I’m impressed with the lack of Shaft being Shaft moments. It seemed like as the series progressed, they went away from their usual Shaftiness (it really permeates Hitagi Crab) but since really Kanbaru’s arc, they’ve gone to just telling a story straight up. It’s fantastic. Good material and Shaft not doing Shaft things make a good anime into an anime worthy to be considered one of the best sans meido. Who would have thunk it?
(Oh wait. I did.)
Damn, me likes how the music kicks in as the hat flies off slo-mo. Also, I like that Tsubasa cat laugh. I think I’m going to use it as my text message notification sound. Oh who am I kidding? I’m going to stick with “USO DA!” I can’t imagine changing it now… unless I want to incur the wrath of Oyashiro-sama/Beatrice/Aka-chan.
(Bakemonogatari needs a 2D sprite fighter. Come on. They already have Taokaka. Hanekawa’s in Litchi’s class. And we just need to give Shinobu an umbrella and a floating bat thingie.)
“Lusting after my mistress’ breasts? You never learn, do you? You’re such a naughty boy.”
A hormonal male lusting after breasts? Unpossible! Seriously. I’d be more shocked if he wasn’t into breasts. What teenaged hormonal male doesn’t constantly think about breasts? Even Lulu is thinking of Suzaku’s breasts.
(I’ve notice that every episode of The Sacred Blacksmith has a joke about Cecily’s boobs. In fact, that show is really hung up on her melonpan, to the point that Aria’s are an afterthought.)
Shaft changed the ED? Whoa. I like it.
(Notice now that Ueda Hajime of FLCL fame gets credited with the ED animation a lot sooner than the previous ED. Good job by him… or her. I have the Faust collection that has an Ueda one shot in it… and the art style is very similar. Wow. How did I not notice this before?)
Notice how Hitagi always does scissors while Koyomi oscillates through all the possible choices. I also don’t need to mention the significance of scissors and Johnnies. Also, the one with Shinobu and Meme has Shinobu looking only at Araragi. He’s just the loli pimp. Adam Blade wishes he would be like Araragi.
We have Kanbaru dry humping a drafting triangle earlier… and now we have Mayoi yelling at a toilet and Senjougahara on blankets? Wha? Whatever tea Ueda is drinking, I want some too.
I dunno. This ED has always been a strong contender. But. Come on. For 2009, it’s all about Aggressive Zone. Even Arararararagi thinks so.
(You know what, after 15,532 viewings, I realized? 1:20 mark. Yes… the green hair… the ribbon… yes… Cruz-ko!)
Well, at least we get an early sample of Horie Yui’s OP. I still think she has yet to surpass Love Destiny… it’s my only destiny!
(Shaft’s doing Katanagatari?)
Oh shit! Mayoi! Run!
Pop quiz… which has been your favorite Ghostory arc so far?