random walk, the cat report

I think one of the more “this shouldn’t be anywhere as entertaining as it is” moments came in episode two of Sketchbook when Ten– err– Sora walks to school, but gives commentary about cats along the way. It might have been slow, prodding, boring, uninteresting… but… it was riveting. So maybe it’s time to do it again.


There’s no doubt about it. Sketchbook is the spiritual successor to Potemayo. I love all the understated humor like the random ice cream headache, the “let’s do the yukata twirl one more time” even if we’re out of time, and “barricade to save the crayfish.” But I do have a hard– very hard— time watching Sketchbook because the main characters look like Tenma, Natsumi, and Angol Moa. The two doll-like thingies that Natsumi uses… well… I don’t remember what they are, but I’m calling them “Kerokero” and “Dorodoro” just to be safe. The striking thing about Sketchbook (that I touched briefly on for thin slicing) is that it is a fairly “normal” slice-of-life show that should be like Aria or YKK… but it’s full of crazies. Grade A crazies.

Speaking of going crazy, maybe I was dreaming or hallucinating from my medication, but I could have sworn last night, my TV was on, and Light-o was saying, “Just as I planned!” in English. If Death Note falters on Adult Swim, I’ll just give up hope on the mainstream American audience and accept that we’re nothing but a land of Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh, and there’s the few of us who huddle around our LCDs hoping for the next episode of Bamboo Blade.

Darling Darling Freeze~~

And, while we’re at it, if I had to guess which Miya-Miya is the crazy one, I would have put down $10 on the ef Miya-Miya. The one on Bamboo Blade seemed so sweet and seemed a perfect 90 to Dan-kun’s 10. But I should have known better! I feel like Light-o after he fell for L’s initial TV trap. The sweet ones are always the craziest. It’s true. Pink is the new black. Her MPD is worthy of a Sonozaki. Though I don’t understand why she would go challenge the two punks with just a wooden sword… unless she was secretly better than Tama-chan… I mean, no way an average 100 pound female is going to take on two 150 males without special training. But I think it just further proves she’s crazy, and she’s making the other crazy, emo Miya-Miya seem like Belldandy. Let’s see which one cuts first.

One reason that I’m really excited about Bamboo Blade is Katsuyuki Konishi, otherwise known as “Reo Kaminaga.” He’s a perfect fit as the selfish, shameless instructor, and Tama-chan is a perfect Simon to his Kamina. It’s great. He has a distinctive voice that I just can’t disassociate with Kamina now, and he’d be in the running for Best Seiyuu Performance of 2007 with Taniguchi. Katsuyuki Konishi is also in Moyashimon, playing, you got it, another bright-eyed lowlife. I think a duet between him and Taniguchi would shatter the space time continuum much like Arc Gurren Lagann.

Moyashimon is an interesting beast. I am also fascinated by this series more than I should be. The microbes… they’re… they’re… cute. Only Japan can make microbes cute. Only Japan can stuff a whole bio chemistry lesson in a manga/anime series. Only Japan can feature not one but two anime series during the same season involving the child of a sake maker. Only Japan can make a manga/anime series about making bread and then make a manga/anime series about the yeast that rises the bread and somehow make it more interesting than the original bread series. I know they’re not related, but they both have the similar feel… “I’m going to find the greatest microbe of Japan!” They both are understated series that actually try to educate the viewer. And they both feature inappropriately hawt women.

At the beginning of the season, I think the epic fanservice and the meido gravitated me to Ninomiya-kun. While Ninomiya has a great harem consisting of a solid one-two punch and a crazy onee-sama, I don’t feel like there’s a lot of depth. They’re like the 2001-2003 Lakers, that ran with Kobe and Shaq. If Derek Fisher (Ayakawa) is your third best player, your team just ain’t that deep (apologies to Big Shot Rob who always played bigger during playoffs than the regular season). The vertically challenged Reiji Maigo harem just isn’t as interesting this time around. Myself; Yourself has pretty much been dropped from my rotation. ef has potential, but we’re just at the good part (crazy imouto 4tw) now. Shion no Ou has weird harem potential, including a trap, but after Otome wa Boku, I’m not going down that path again. I’m not watching 4:3 Clannad. Pains me to type this, but Yume *ouch* and Otome make Da Capo II worth watching, *ouch* at least on 4X mode when they’re not on screen and 2X when they are. I think I’m leaning towards the Kimikiss “harem” now for most impressive.


I think one thing disappointing a few people is that Kimikiss anime is actually trying something different. Three romance stories in one? Is JC Staff trying to turn a shounen series into a shoujo series? Well, whatever they are trying, it is working. Since I never had any prior impression of the franchise, I’m enjoying the JC Staff rendition. The only way I think I can be disappointed now is if I learn that Kimikiss was originally about the seven days Nia and Simon spent together after defeating the Anti-spiral and their wedding. After seeing that last episode of Shana, I immediately regretted ranking Shana higher than Kimikiss.

What does Kimikiss have going for it? A great OP. I think all great shows have great OPs to get you in the mood, and Aozora Loop by marble qualifies. It’s hypnotic. I still wish that they would animate the OP instead of using stills, as it’s kinda creepy seeing Mao-onee not blink once during the OP. Speaking of Mao-onee, I may have to toss up a Mao-onee showdown now between her and Melissa. But even with the generic pushover/shy guys and aggressive/fun girls formula, it’s entertaining. It’s not about developing new genres (what new genre can be realistically created anyway) but refining what’s there already and making it entertaining. Hell, I’d take several solid, entertaining but non-groundbreaking series like Kimikiss over something “groundbreaking” like Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei anyday. (I used “quotes” there for a reason.) Kimikiss just needs a meido and a crazy girl now.


Minami-ke is also in the sold, entertaining category. I’m really enjoying this one too. Kana is great. She’s the evolutionary Tomo-chan. Haruka and Chiaki are pretty funny as well. Great character-driven comedy. Of course, this paragraph is just a ploy for me to toss up some much needed Haruka fanservice. And you can argue that the next paragraph is just a lame excuse to toss up Ms. Wang fanservice, thus making this paragraph the luckiest paragraph alive.


Man, because of all the lightweight, low calorie slice-of-life haremish series on the menu this season, it’s making Gundam 00 seem ten times better than it should. Lucky. It’s like the juicy prime rib with a generous side of garlic mashed potema– err– potatoes in a sea of organic health foods. Kimikiss, Slice-of-Life Harem Shana, Minami-ke, and others battle it out while Gundam 00 gets to sit and watch from the sidelines. Unfortunately, if I wanted action or mecha this season outside of all things Setsuna, I’m going to have to talk myself into Rental Magica and Dragonaut like trying to talk myself into believing that the Atlanta Hawks and Golden State Warriors will make it to the NBA finals. See if Acie Law can become the point guard that Atlanta needs and Baron Davis can stay healthy… still screwed either way.

That’s probably as ridiculous as Sunrise animating a love scene between Setsuna and Lockon, but even if they did that, I wouldn’t be like, “This is unexpected! I’m in shock!” I think the greatest possible Gundam WTF moment is if Lockon had Potemayo as his support mecha instead of a boring Haru ball. That would be gloriously delicious. I don’t have anything “new” to say about Gundam 00, but I do kinda miss the days when Sunrise took chances with the Gundam franchise and didn’t just play it safe. Of course, part of that experimentation resulted in either the greatest or the worst series in the franchise… Gundam Wing.

I will say that stay the path or get off it that I like Ten– err– Sora’s philosophy about not doing the usual. The routine will always be waiting for you tomorrow. I think that’s why I wrote that last post. I think a big part of the post is for myself and reminding myself that, hey, “Gundam 00 4″ will be there tomorrow. And with that we’re back to where we started, it’s been another relaxing walk, and I’ll see ya someday for “Gundam 00 4.”

11 Responses to “random walk, the cat report”

  1. Keep your yaoi fantasies out of my head

  2. Haruka-onee-sama fanservice… *Ikuto-class nosebleed*

    Thanks for that…

  3. It’s funny how the show I was looking forward to (Genshiken/YUA/Rental Magica) didn’t turn out as great as I hoped it be, and the shows I actually look forward to watching every week (pretty much everything listed here minus Kimikiss) isn’t what I expected to be entertaining.

    Really, I don’t know what is it about Moyashimon… I just like watching the micro-organisms bouncing around and chatting (and the OP’s catchy too).

  4. It is a sad day when I would rather watch Da Capo II than Shana II. I’m going to drop Shana II until (and if) Derailed says it’s worth watching again. But because of many reasons, including Kimikiss, my soul still belongs to J.C.Staff. Now I have to find something to replace Shana II in my watch schedule, and fortunately there seems to be a lot of unexpected good stuff.

  5. My soul still belongs to Shana & Co. I’ll stick around just for the 2nd main arc of the series (with the green haired girl coming for Reiji Maigo’s Keeper). J. C. Stuff really knows how to create good scenarios, but I guess they’re trying to hard with Shana’s romance too much. Ahh Honey & Clover was a masterpiece from them…

  6. Just so you know, the raw used in SS-Eclipse’s Clannad 01 [1024×576 h264] is a hell of a lot better than A.F.K.s avi.

  7. Mark: can you watch those 576i/ h264 files with a DivX-capable DVD-player in TV? If you can please tell what kind of DVD-player you are using.

  8. I’m a little undecided about Kimikiss right now. Given that it’s based on a dating sim, it’s certainly taking a rather bold step (in the adaptation department anyway) of letting the girls focus on other guys instead of one ‘main’ male lead — in fact, I think it raised a LOT ire from the people that played the game. Which can be good or bad depending on your viewpoint.

    While the characters are likeable enough, and some of the relationship dynamics make sense (sadly, the three groupings of girls don’t seem to interact much), I feel like the pacing is… off, a bit. I can’t put my finger on exactly why though.

  9. Mmmm…. You know, for the Church that Melonpan Built (I’m going to shamelessly beat this catchphrase until it’s more dead than Barbaro…. OH.), there seems to be an unholy trinity here of fanservice, sports, and… I guess it’s missing a leg. Fanservice is always nice though.

  10. And Kyrios said “Let there be melonpan,” and there was melonpan. And Kyrios saw that the melonpan was good.

  11. I agree with almost everything you said, minus the gundam 00 part. Though im enjoying it thouroughly, I wish more seasons were like this one.

    But I prefer Chiaki fanservice over Haruka fanservice anyday of the week.

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