Izumo: Takeki Tsurugi No Senki

August 5, 2006

I can’t actually remember the reason why I watched Izumo: Takeki Tsurugi No Senki in the first place. Was it because of the girls? Nope. Harem and lots of girls, yes. But cute and kawaii girls, no. Was it because of the storyline? Nope. It’s just average and typical action adventure mix with some supernatural fantasy. Was it because of the character developement then? Nope either. It’s quite stagnant throughout the 12 episode series, with no major changes and you can pretty much guess what kind of characters they are after the first few episodes.
So why is it that I watch, ah? Donno lah. But anyway, allow me to recap on the entire storyline. So the first episode opener sees some sort of a flashback and some guys fighting, and then some female figure saying something. Don’t quite remember. Then we move on to our present world, where you’d pretty much guess that this guy, Takeru Yagi, is gonna be the main protagonist of the series, having his nice sleep interrupted when 2 girls came to wake him up. And you’ll pretty much guess here too that these 2 ladies are gonna be part of that harem that I mentioned earlier on. Yup, they’re sisters, Kotono and Asuka Shiratori.
But Takeru isn’t really related to them, just that he’s just living with them in the sister’s grandpa’s kendo dojo since Takeru’s parent’s demise. But he still calls him grandpa. Anyway, the usual morning breakfast with the family then off to school, where they meet Takeru’s best pal, Takeshi Yamato. Because of both these guy’s names sounding quite close, I got confused in the beginning who is who. Bla bla bla, and in class now we’re introduced to some new transfer student from America, Seri Oosu. She doesn’t seem to have that American accent, though she’s originally from Japan. Then what do you know, Seri then burst into excitement when she spots Takeru. Yeah, claiming something like her childhood friend, bride-to-be kinda stuff. Not imporant. But what I’m guessing that she’s gonna be part of  the harem too.
So after class, back to grandpa’s dojo, Takeru sees his grandpa’s ceremonial sword in some cabinet. Curious, he went to pick it up. Then a flash of vision of 2 guys fighting. Wow… What was that all about. Anyway, more bla bla blas. Then we shift scene to that mysterious lady like figure from the beginning. Yeah, she’s trying to summon somebody, and it looks like Takeru through his dreams.
Okay, back to the dojo, present time. Grandpa is having a talk with Takeru and Takeshi about some upcoming kendo tournament. But he can only pick 1. And without haste, he chose Takeru, eventhough Takeshi seems to be the better one. Of course, how would you feel if someone inferior than you gets chosen for some tournament. Jealous, right? Yup, that’s how Takeshi felt and he requests a rematch to prove that he should be the one going. Oh oh, do you feel a crack in the friendship? This is just the tip of the iceberg.
So match time, fight fight fight. And what do you know? Takeru actually delivers the winning blow. I guess that settles it. Takeru is in and Takeshi’s out. However, Takeshi’s not satisfied by this still. So as Kotono approaches to comfort him, Takeshi vent his frustration on her. Luckily Takeru, along with Asuka and Seri were nearby to stop him. And before you know it, these 2 guys are fighting each other and that best pal friendship thing seems like it never existed before.
Then suddenly strange happened. An earthquake! Wait a minute, why are their bodies going like ‘double vision’ (don’t know how to describe this part)? It’s that mysterious maiden figure again. Takeru and Takeshi recognize this lady from their dreams. And in a flash, soon the group’s being transported into some portal. And when they awoke, they find themselves in some ruins, just like their school, but much more run-down and covered with creeping plants and moss.
So, episode 2 continues where we left off. The gang is now split into 2, with Takeru, Seri and Asuka in one group, and Takeshi and Kotono in the other. As both groups are trying to figure what’s happening, a swarm of insects beseiged them. Well, I guess it’ll be a good idea to run since you don’t have any weapons with you. But lucky Taksehi, he finds a sword somewhere and doesn’t hesitate to use it. He seems pretty good with it.
Finally they’re able to meet outside the school in some open field. Still trying to figure out what’s happening, mysterious giant figures in cloak suddenly appear. Looks hostile. Yup, they are. As Takeru, Seri and Asuka flee, Takeshi and Kotono are surrounded by them. And they produced some bright flash which teleports these 2 somewhere else. Too bad Takeshi dropped his sword. But Takeru dashed back and grab the sword to prepare and fight back. As soon as one of those hostiles was gonna slash Takeru, out of nowhere some guy on a horse slashed the hostile and following him are a band of warriors attacking the hostiles. Looks like they’re saved in the nick of time. Presumably I guess these are the good guys. Has to be.
Then some girl, Sakuya, appears and wave to the group to come this way to escape getting caught between the fighting. As she leads the group through some forest, they heard some strange footsteps. Oh, nothing to worry about, as it turns out that the person, Mai Kitagawa, and her pet crow, is one of Takeru’s classmates and is also somehow mysteriously pulled into this world. Ah, another girl to the harem.
Now we shift scene to where Takeshi and Kotono has been teleported to. Looks like some dark cave. As Takeshi awakens, he sees that maiden figure in his dreams. Yeah, now we know her name, Himiko. Along with her too, is her dad, Oonamuji, and his son, Minakata. The bad guys? The scenery would appear to suggests so. And we see how Himiko how grateful she is that Takeshi has come to her. Er?
Back to the other group. Takeru and co are now camping alongside the group which saved them. The head of the group, Kagutsuchi, and his daughter Sakuya, explaining about the current situation of this world. Something like how people in our present world who died, will be reincarnated to this world that they’re in now, and vice versa. Uh-huh. And how the ‘humans’ of this world are fighting against the Akuryo (term for the baddies here). So it’s basically a good versus evil. Also, something like Himiko wants to crete a new world where both worlds will merge, therefore she needs to eliminate the current one that exists. Something like that. But the story is interupted (and epsiode ended) when the Akuryos launched a surprise attack on the group.
Are you following me? Oh, I want to note that there’s gonna be a lot of back and forth between the groups. Yeah, one minute this group, the next minute the other group. But it isn’t just confined to this. Even the battles are back and forth. Good guys attack Akuryo, then the latter retreats. Then Akuryo attacks them back, then the good guys retreat. You get the point.
So episode 3, continues with the ambush. But the good guys manage to retreat safely. Hmm… I guess strange 2-legged lizards are equivalent to horses too in this world. So the gang arrived at the main base, where we’re introduced to this lady, Amaterasu, who’s Kagutsuchi’s wife and also the head of this rebellion. More talking which I don’t remember. But Takeru wonders about Takeshi and Kotono and how they’r doing right now.
Back to the other side (I’m getting tired of this already). Himiko explains that she needs Takeshi to help fight against Amaterasu and her allies but Takeshi refuses. Fast forward to the part where Takeshi and Minakata are having a ‘friendly duel’. Again Takeshi lost and Minakata commented on how he sucked. Too bad, loser. Then we get to know how great a flute player Kotono is (which somehow calms the Akuryo soldiers). More talking and back and forths. Anyway, Minakata together with Takeshi assembles a small army for patrolling purposes, when they’re ambushed by the good guys. Takeshi grabs a sword and before you know it kills somebody. His conscious is playing with him here. I never killed anyone, this is the first time I killed somebody. Ah, what the heck, Takeshi’s gonna be siding with the bad guys, right? But anyway, it seems that the good guys are losing.
So in episode 4, one of the good guys who manage to survive the onslaught, made it back to Kagutsuchi’s place and reported what happened. Of course, he’d mentioned seeing some strange guy in some strange black clothes (Takeshi lah!). And Takeru suspect that it could be Takeshi. Anyway, I’m gonna just blog on important points of this episode from now on. We’re introduced to some red-hair chic, Rin, who seems to be wanting to ally herself with Himiko and offer her services to her, but Minakata doens’t really approves of it. Takeru and co visits a village where the recently wounded warriors of the recent ambush are recuperating. Takeshi and Kotono have a private moment. But Kotono mentions something about Himiko being misguided but Takeshi said he would for now play along and side with them and see how thing goes. So he pledges his allegiance to Himiko.
Finally, at the village where Takeru and co are resting, we see Kitagawa awaking right in the middle of the night, trekking through the forest and reaching the edge of the cliff. Then she takes a rock and smashed some crystal glass which serves as a force shield to hide the village from the Akuryo’s view. Barrier gone. Ooo… Now I know that her role in the group is something to be like a traitor.
Episode 5, Sakuya and Seri finds Kitagawa fainted at the place where she smashed the barrier. But because Kitagawa had done so, now the Akuryo can find where Kagutsuchi’s hiding. And so another attack led by Minakata. But Minakata had a face-off with Kagutsuchi and Takeru and lost. But these 2 didn’t kill him but instead rush back to check on the safety of the women and children of the village. You guys should have done so lah to save all the trouble. I think or else they wouldn’t be good guys, don’t you think.
Because of this, Takeru and Kagutsuchi embark on some mission to find Takeshi and Kotono to save them. Once they arrived at Himiko’s camp, the rash Takeru heads in without thinking. Of course, Kagutsuchi spots Himiko too and wiftly proceeds to fight her only thing is, Oonamuji is in the way. As Takeru finally finds Kotono and prepares to make his escape, he and Takeshi for the first time meets face to face and have another one of their duels. Well, Takeshi lost again. I guess this confirms that they’re no longer buddies anymore. Plus, Takeshi doesn’t want to go back with Takeru. And so, Kotono also follows suit. Does she have a soft spot for him? But anyway, it’s something like ‘playing along with Himiko’ plan. With that, Takeru and Kagutsuchi fled.
Episode 6 is mainly about how Amaterasu tells the group that in order for them to go back to their world, they need to seek the powers of the Shisen (4 pretty ladies with super magical powers). So the group with Sakuya tagging along travels to meet them. Of course the Shisen wouldn’t just accept anybody and you’ll see a series of tests that they have to go through and pass. Of course they made it and to pass the final test, Takeru has to ‘fight the dark side of his heart’. I guess it’s Takeshi that Takeru’s thinking as the ‘dark side’. And he passed with flying colours too. With that, the Shisen now accepts Takeru as their master. By the way, one of them reminded me of Shampoo of Ranma 1/2 (I guess she’d be the comical relief with Seri to fight over Takeru’s attention), and one of them reminded me of Mint of Galaxy Angel.
However, the traitor Kitagawa is now trying to inform Oonamuji of their location while the Shisen was busily infusing their powers into Takeru’s sword, except for Asuka who noticed and realized what was happening. With Kitagawa’s cover blown, Oonamuji possed and took over Kiatagawa’s body (like remote desktop control) and kidnaps her. By the time the group finished their business they realized that Asuka’s missing. To make matters worse, an army of Akuryo soldiers are coming their way. But an enraged Takeru sliced and diced his way through them like a hot knife through butter.
Episode 7, just like previous episodes, more talking and back and forth (I’m really really really tired of this). The end part saw Takeru and the girls manage to arrive at Himiko’s camp and resuce Asuka and Kotono (these 2 sisters for the first time are reunited and are so happy to see each other). Then another Takeru-Takeshi battle. You guessed it, Takeshi lost again. With the Akuryo’s army increasing in numbers, the Shisen then finally used their powers to transport Takeru and the girls back to their world. But Takeshi decided to stay behind. Maybe it was a good thing to leave him back there.
Well, episode 8 seems to take a break a little from it all as it focuses on Takeru and the rest of the girls now back at their own world, and how Sakuya tries to understand things from their world. More light-hearted, this epsiode. Like as though nothing happened since Takeru and the rest were gone. Asuka is still mad over her kidnapping by Kitagawa but Kitagawa seems repentant and is willing to turn over a new leaf. However, their stay is cut short when Takeru has a weird dream of Himiko asking him the real Susano to awake. Susa who? Sorry If I didn’t introduce this Susano earlier on.
He’s some guy that Himiko wants to awaken. As in the earlier episodes, Himiko saw his soul being reborn into Takeshi but now she realized that the real one may be in Takeru. I guess she chose the wrong person from the start, did she? Even so, Takeshi even affirmed to her that he’ll stay by her side no matter what. So the playing along with Himiko’s plan isn’t in force now, huh? I guess Takeshi’s seriously into it now. Anyway, more on this Susano guy later on. And so with Sakuya’s powers, they head back once more to the other world. Oops, Sakuya forgot her gifts.
So the gang landed back at the school ruins in episode 9. Now Himiko’s going to take Takeru but Sakuya chants her magic to block whatever Himiko is unleashing. However, that lightning bolt hit Kotono and she fell like a dead corpse to the ground. Just in time the Shisen arrived and Himiko fled. Just as you think it was over, Rin now appears and tries to pesuade Takeru. So some story telling about Himiko and Susano. Yeah, something like Susano died while protecting Himiko in some war and his soul was then reincarnated into Takeru and Takeshi. So Himiko needs to awaken him so that she could use his powers to help recreate a new world. I think.
But the Shisen interupted and Rin (I found out she’s one of the sisters to the Shisen) counterattacked, hitting Kitagawa’s crow. For the first time we see that the crow is actually a human. Too bad she had a short appearance and died. By the way, Rin already fled. After giving the ‘human crow’ a proper burial, Takeru must now head to some other world where Kotono’s spirit is and bring her back before it’s too late. Yeah, that blast from Himiko was too powerful that her soul was blasted away to some other dimension.
Episode 10 also nothing much except some journey to the other world to save Kotono. Yeah, some great terror ferocious looking guardians like that minotaur of that world even lost to Takeru’s sword. Can’t believe that they’re that weak. Only can talk big and sound fierce only. Anyway he managed to saved her, and they returned back to the ruins and Kotono’s state returned back to normal. Now the preparation of the final battle begins
In episode 11, Takeru along with Kagutsuchi and the girls arrived at Himiko’s palace to settle things once and for all. So we see Takeru and Minakata duelling and Kagutsuchi taking on Oonamuji. But unfortunately, during the former’s battle, the Susano in Takeru was unleashed and in the process, he killed Minakata. Now Takeshi’s really mad. But before they could fight they’re whisked away by Himiko inside the palace. Then this part I don’t get it. After Minakata was killed, Oonamuji just gave up and disappeared. I mean he gave Kitagawa her freedom (meaning no longer his puppet) and he just disappeared. What the? Then Kagutsuchi felt a little bit sorry for Oonamuji. But Oonamuji told him not to say a word. And then, vanished. So is he dead? Didn’t see him in the end either.
So final episode. Just let me mention first that Rin was also killed with Takeru’s immense awakening power. Good for her too. I guess nobody pitied or noticed her even when she died. Another Takeru-Takeshi fight, but before the winner is decided, Susano now really awakens and interupts the fight. With Takeru and Takeshi in a state of trance, Susano tells Himiko that he now needs to move on. What the?! He should have done this in the very beginning and save us all the trouble. I guess realizing it too late is better than not realizing at all. And Himiko accepts his decision. And off Susano goes. So the war is officially over.
As Kagutsuchi and Amaterasu thanked Takeru and the girls for their help (with a sobbing and reluctant-to-see-them-go Sakuya), they bid farewell as the Shisen once again used their powers to send them back to their world (I heard something like they would someday come back and visit them. How? These people got no powers lah). Except for Takeshi who decided to stay behind and be with Himiko. Now he’s Himiko’s new lover? What does he see in her, and vice versa? Heard something like Takeshi said he belongs in this world (?!). And they both wathing from a distance as Takeru and the girls are teleported back. End of story.
Woah… Just like that it ended? So there was really no connection with the present real world after all. It was just things of the other world only. So the things we saw in the first episode like the dojo tournament, Takeru’s grandad and Seri as his childhood friend aren’t really that significant, huh? Or the fact that Takeru didn’t even choose which girl he’s gonna be with. So there isn’t any real romance at all too (especially the part in the beginning where Seri’s supposed to be Takeru’s loved one. So that makes the overall ‘love role’ redundunt, huh). In addition, there’re lots of standing around doing nothing from the girls, making their roles redundant too most of the time.
Overall, I think the whole thing is just average. I think I’m never gonna watch such animes again, so I better read carefully the synopsis of the show first before jumping in and then find out that this whole thing was ‘hah… just like that only ah?’.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: