Here’s another short teenage romance drama story. This time it’s the year 2001 production Ajimu – Kaigan Monogatari (beach story, that is). If you’re thinking that since this is a series where the setting is near the beach, there’s gonna be lots of sexy girls in bikinis, then you’re totally off the mark. Well, of course there are, but not so much as it would be the main theme of the series for perverts alike to gawk at.
 
Since this is also a short OVA, this series has only 4 episodes and each episode is approximately 30 minutes. So you could also say that you could finish it in just about 2 hours. Yeah, I was wondering why they didn’t make it into a movie since it has that movie length. Maybe it’s because the producers wants to leave a little suspense for the viewers? Maybe. But let’s get on with the story, episode by episode:
 
Episode 1
We see a girl, Ajimu Yasuna, who looks like a cross between the serious version of Excel of Excel Saga and Naru of Love Hina, getting ready for school. Then the scene changes to Hirosuke Nakaido, a 17 year old high school student, rushing late to catch a train to school. Since it’s slippery, he slips and saw a profile of Ajimu there. He’s saying how cute she was when he bumps into SURF girl. That’s an abbreviation for Short, Ugly, Rude and Fat girl. I can’t believe that I actually stayed up all night just to think about an appropriate name to give her! Oh well, it’s more like SURF girl bumps him away as she pushes and forces her way in. Yeah, this girl has no real lines except just grunting away. Because of that, Hirosuke misses the train and said to himself the beginning of some feelings (love at first sight lah).
 
The next day at the train station, he managed to get a glimpse of her waiting in line, boards the train this time, but just observes Ajimu. The following day, as he waits, he noticed Ajimu isn’t there. The train arrives and Hirosuke gets on. But as the train prepares to leave, Ajimu arrives in which, Hirosuke blocks the train door and asks her to hurry. Just then SURF girl bangs into him and tells him not to be pushy. Luckily, Ajimu too managed to get on.
 
At school during recess, Hirosuke and his friend Kazuki Izumiya are chating while watching some girls playing volleyball. Kazuki mentions that Hirosuke met a girl this morning, which caused Hirosuke to near choke, and got hit by a volleyball. Then Kazuki thinks he should approach her and voice acts how he’d introduce himself to her and all that. Yeah, that was what Hirosuke planned to do this morning but he didn’t get the chance as she wasn’t at the station. Kazuki continues that she may be going to a foreign school in Vienna because she’s carrying a violin case and seemingly acts in an aristocratic manner. In class, Hirosuke’s not paying attention as he’s got his mind on Ajimu and wishing how he’d knew her name. Meanwhile back at Ajimu’s house, Ajimu has some flashback of watching a plane taking off before we see Ajimu wearing some face mask because she actually caught a cold.
 
Next day at the train station, Hirosuke saw her in that face mask and thinks that she’s caught a cold. It must be contagious as other people there seems to be sneezing too. Then this is the funny part. Inside the train, Hirosuke tries to approach her and strike a conversation. But as more and more people got on board, they started pushing him and he’s in a tight spot with Ajimu. Somebody’s racket’s poking Ajimu’s butt (like ahem ahem) and Ajimu thinks that Hirosuke’s a molester and shouts out loud that he’s one. Hirosuke spotted the racket and says it’s a misunderstanding. As the train officials pushes SURF girl in, Hirosuke then ‘squeezes’ closer to Ajimu and their lips met! The 2 are in shock. So for the rest of the trip, they’re like holding each other. Must be uncomfortable.
 
At school, Kazuki saw and laughed at Hirosuke’s face swollen with slap marks on both his cheeks and heard the whole thing. But Hirosuke’s daydreaming how soft Ajimu’s lips were and how good she smell. Then Hirosuke came back to reality when he’s been hit by a baseball this time. Kazuki receives an SMS and tells Hirosuke to come with him tonight to meet 2 college girls and will be posing as 20 year olds. Hirosuke’s not in the mood but Kazuki says a wound from a girl must be cured by girls. What kind of theory is that. Anyway, Kazuki soon gets hit by a rugby ball. Why do these balls keep flying here? Bad or rookie players?
 
That night at some bar, the 2 guys went on that date with Kazuki telling the girls, Suzue Takemoto and Kyoko, about Hirosuke’s slapping incident, much to his embarrassment. After Hirosuke relives himself, he bumps into Ajimu. While he picks up her ukelele, he saw and stared at her bra. Ajimu recognizes him as the molester but Hirosuke was quick to go apologize on his feet. Later, it seems that Ajimu’s performing there with everyone listening. Suzue and Kyoko recognizes her. Looks like Hirosuke’s in awe over Ajimu’s performance, but sneezes.
 
Later Hirosuke approaches her while she’s resting but Ajimu got off and left quickly. The bartender known only as Master, gives Hirosuke a tissue to wipe his running nose. Maybe she doesn’t wanna get infected again. Hirosuke manages to catch up with Ajimu outside and explain to her that morning’s incident but she just cycles off with Hirosuke sneezing again. Just then Suzue appeared and said to Hirosuke that he’s got a cold from kissing her and that he doesn’t stand a chance. When Hirosuke asked about Kazuki and Kyoko, Suzue told them that they’ve left for the beach. That flirt. Suzue continues to tell him Ajimu’s name and since because it was quite odd and funny, it’s easy to remember. Also, how she transferred last year and there were many guys after her.
 
Hirosuke then found out that Suzue’s just a high school student too. Looks like she lied about their age just like them. Before Suzue leaves, she tells him that Ajimu’s a regular at that bar and performs on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and also performs on every 1st Sunday of the month at the beach.
 
At the beach, Hirosuke’s watching her performance and his sneezing seems to be annoying the crowd and Ajimu. Later, he apologized to her for interrupting her performance. They both had some talk when Hirosuke suddenly faints on her. Ajimu must be thinking that this must be one of his molesting tactics. Wrong, girl. He’s for real. At the clinic then, Hirosuke resting with Ajimu sitting next to him. She’s thinking about the things he said and whispers sorry. When he opened his eyes, she sneezes. Oh well, she’s got the bug again. Or is it the love bug…
 
Anyway, I just want to note that, even though this anime is set in Japan, don’t be surprise if you find several Hawaiian theme or setting. I mean, this is a beach, right? And probably the producers think that one of the best beaches in the world are the ones found on Hawaii. Just guessing.
 
Episode 2
We see Hirosuke rushing to the train station as he saw Ajimu in line there. They both greet and have a little chat. As they got on board, Hirosuke got stuck between the door. You should pay attention to your surroundings. At school, Kazuki’s showing Hirosuke a magazine with pics of Suzue as a model. She looks hot! Then Kazuki asked him about this morning on the train, in which a flashback as the train moves, Ajimu partially loses her balance and fell on Hirosuke. She apologizes for calling him a molester and stalker. He also apologized for saying weird things on the beach. Yeah, lots of apologizing talk. But the funny thing is that we see SURF girl running outside and trying to catch the train as it passes her. Too bad, she didn’t manage to get on.
 
Back to present time, Kazuki gets an SMS to meet someone somewhere. At the same time, Suzue watches Ajimu playing handball and looks like Ajimu’s spacing out looking at the airplane flying above and nearly gets hit by the ball. Hirosuke buys the magazine Kazuki showed him earlier on. At the train station, Hirosuke bumps into Suzue and they both had lunch. She’s asking whether he’s confessed to Ajimu or not but Hirosuke says that sounded like a joke. Suzue then wonders if Ajimu has moved on from her special someone and asks Hirosuke to try and find out more 1 more time because if he’s gonna be rejected, better to do it sooner. Uh-huh. A waitress then gives them a free plate meal on the house, which Suzue angrily rejects them. Hirosuke asks why, but Suzue says that they probably mistook her for someone else. I wonder what does that mean.
 
Later, we see Ajimu playing the ukelele at the beach alone when Master comes along and compliments her playing. Then some vague talking about Ajimu’s boyfriend. Later as Ajimu performs at the bar, Suzue tags along Hirosuke there and wonders why Ajimu’s playing since it’s not her usual day. Hey, Kazuki’s there too. I guess, they’re all gonna be regulars there. As Ajimu sings on stage, Suzue got up there and dance. Then some flashback fo Ajimu’s boyfriend walking out and plane chasing scene before Ajimu starts to cry in her shaky teary voice as she tries to control her emotions. But she couldn’t as she stops playing and cried on her knees. So pitiful. Hirosuke runs there and tries to give her a handkerchief (passed by Suzue) . Back at home, Hirosuke’s thinking about Suzue’s words on the moving on part.
 
Next day, Hirosuke missed the train but Ajimu managed to get on. At school, Suzue and Ajimu met and they both complimented each other for last night’s performance. Suzue asks her if she could have back Hirosuke’s hanky and whispers that she plans to confess to him this summer break. But Ajimu says that she’ll return it to him personally. Suzue then asks her to return it soon as she doesn’t want Hirosuke to go look for it.
 
Next day, Hirosuke receives a call from Suzue asking if he got plans for the summer break. He says he has a part time job. Suzue then invites him to have lunch with her after he has finish with his job. Back at Suzue’s home, her dad’s not happy that her pic appeared in that mag. She soon tells him that she’s going out later but forgot where :)
 
Hirosuke’s doing his last delivery and passes by Ajimu’s house and accidentally saw her changing through the window. Crash! Keep your eyes on the road. Ajimu looks out and saw him. The 2 then are sitting in the living room with an ‘uneasy atmosphere’. Ajimu’s mom asks if Ajimu wants to ask him to her room. They both remain silent. Mom then asks the package is from who and Hirosuke answered it’s for their neighbour.
 
In Ajimu’s room, the 2 had some chat when Ajimu’s mom asks her to come down for a little while. As Ajimu leaves, Hirosuke picks up and looks at a face down photo, which is a picture of Ajimu with a guy and a girl. Ajimu then comes in and apologizes when he saw that Hirosuke had saw the photo. She tells him that the last time she saw him was 2 years ago. Some comforting words from Hirosuke before Ajimu gives back the hanky. Hirosuke suddenly remembers the plan to meet Suzue. Yeah, that girl’s waiting at some spot for him. Since Hirosuke’s not showing up, she’s walking off and bumps into Kazuki who’s doing some part time job at a flowershop. She asks him if he wants to have lunch.
 
They both did. Kazuki says that Suzue wants to set them up as he also thinks those 2 are a good pair. When Hirosuke arrives at the spot, Suzue’s already gone. Of course lah. Then Ajimu plays her ukelele by the beach alone and thinking about her ex and the things he said the her, like how he likes her song and this time he’s going for real. Ajimu continues playing and thinks of what Hirosuke said earlier on with Master watching from afar. Then the scene changes as we see an airplane landing at the airport and some guy in glasses returns. Looks like Ajimu’s ex.
 
Episode 3
This episode opens with Ajimu performing in front of her mom’s shop, Hirosuke and Kazuki doing their part time job. A big gust of wind blows Ajimu’s music sheets away which also caused Hirosuke to fall off his bike. In the shop, some talk about some movie which’s supposed to be Ajimu’s dad favourite. So happens to be Hirosuke’s favourite too. He then invites Ajimu out for lunch, which she agrees.
 
During lunch, som talk about what they aspire to become in the future. Kazuki then arrives and put a flower on Ajimu’s ear and says how the 2 look like an item now before going off to sell more flowers. Master too arrives but collapse shortly. Hirosuke and Ajimu helped him up and Master says he’s just tired from preparing things alone. Looks like Master’s setting up some stall here too. They also saw Suzue and Kyoko there with the latter bashing up some guy. Suzue whispers to Ajimu on how they both look like a pair, much to Ajimu’s embarrassment as she denies. Master then asks Ajimu to perform to the crowd. While she’s doing so, Hirosuke’s making some ice kacang. When both their eyes meet, they blush. Suzue, working as a waitress, asks Hirosuke "When will the relationship start". This girl is eager to see some ‘action’.
 
Meanwhile, that guy in shades, Yuuma Otomine, is seen asking for directions and arrives at an inn looking for a room. At the inn’s reception, some talk and joke on double suicide with Moe, Kazuki’s little sister and helper at the inn. He seems kinda sporting though. Later that night, Hirosuke meets Ajimu at the bar and remembers the setup made by Suzue earlier on. Hirosuke seems nervous and guilty sounding. Ajimu leaves first saying that he’s probably waiting for someone. Meanwhile, Suzue is some Japanese dance class, therefore she can’t come. Hirosuke asks Ajimu to wait and needs to tell her something. She says he wanna confess isn’t it but he says it’s about Suzue.
 
Then he asks what kind of person is he (her ex). A short flashback of him but Hirosuke says nevermind and leaves but Ajimu says she wanna have a moment with him and told him that person in the photo died in an accident a year ago. Some comforting words from Hirosuke as he asks herto play that song again, which she does. Hirosuke then picks up an orange seashell and gives it to herat the end of her performance. Looks like Suzue’s watching them from afar and has that flashback when she’s young and having trouble catching rabbits, so a young Hirosuke helps her to catch them all. So I see Suzue does know Hirosuke.
 
At the video store, Ajimu saw a video she wanted but SURF girl grabs it away first. Haih… Thought I haven’t seen her quite awhile there. At the inn, Otomine telling Moe he just came from London but she’s laughing and doesn’t believe him because he sounds like some Japanese dialect. At Ajimu’s home, she’s playing to herself and thinking. Then in Otomine’s room, he unveils a painting of Ajimu playing the ukelele and says he’ll come to see her. Ajimu removes the photo from the frame and puts it in her drawer.
 
Next day, Hirosuke forced to play croquet with grandma and her old folk friends. He meets Moe and Otomine with Moe introducing them both to each other and says he’s staying at the inn. Grandma crows up to Otomine and asks him if he’s hurt. He then says something like are you blind, in which, grandpa replied "No I’m not, I’m the one who saved you from danger". Though Otomine doesn’t know what she’s talking about, I think that the reason why he didn’t die in that accident was because this grandma saved him. Now it makes a little sense.
 
Ajimu’s mom happy for Ajimu because she thinks that Ajimu has found her special someone, much to Ajimu’s embarrassment. Kazuki asks Suzue if she wants to go with him to the fireworks festival tonight and also suggests inviting Hirosuke (which he already did). Meanwhile, Hirosuke and Otomine are still against each other at the croquet match. Though Otomine lost he says he’ll get his revenge. Don’t worry, no ill feelings between them. Hirosuke then suggests to catch goldfish at the festival, which Otomine agrees.
 
At the festival, the 2 have their competition over several events. It’s funny that Moe felt left out and yelled "What am I to you guys!". Yeah, they’re so engrossed and ignoring her. Hirosuke then bumps into Kazuki, Suzue, Kyoko and Master. Uh-huh, Hirosuke’s surprised that Master and Kyoko are together but the latter 2 went off together somewhere. Kazuki asks why Hirosuke’s here and he says it’s a long story. Then Suzue asks isn’t he supposed to be with Ajimu, which caused Otomine to be a little surprised. Shortly, Ajimu arrives and saw Otomine. She too is surprised and can’t believe that it’s him. Otomine then says "Hi, it’s been a long time". Yeah, 2 years could be a very looooong time.
 
Episode 4
It’s raining and Otomine is apologizing to Ajimu for calling her to meet him so early. Ajimu says she’s really angry for lying to her and says why he left her like that. He hugs her and apologizes. Some I’m-sorry-I-won’t-leave-you-again talk. Anybody would get angry since you’ve never told her that you’re not dead from that accident. While Moe’s cleaning Otomine’s room, she saw that Ajimu painting when Kazuki passes by and say she shouldn’t touch customer’s stuffs. When Moe says something about that girl in the magazine is Suzue, Kazuki plays dumb and leaves for his part time job. Hmm… There’re some hints that may suggests that Moe likes Otomine. Or is it just that onii-chan complex?
 
Then we see Otomine and Ajimu together in a train. Ajimu’s unsure about her feelings and saying to herself the Otomine she loves is right in front of her so is it a dream? Later Kazuki and Hirosuke met and the former seems to know that Hirosuke’s been called by Suzue to meet her and explains that Suzue has eyes for him since the first time they met but Hirosuke says she’s too mature for him. Some talk like what you’re gonna do about Ajimu and what’s gonna happen to her, he’ll go back to that guy and stuffs.
 
Ajimu and Otomine are seen having some ramen. A boy sketches Ajimu and when Otomine sketches a portrait of the boy, it made him very happy. Meanwhile, Suzue asking Hirosuke to go out with her or he can wait till Ajimu rejects him. She also says that he’s playing the waiting game and if it’s over between them, she wants him to give her an answer. Suzue then pecks him on his cheek and wishes him good luck before running off.
 
Otomine then asks Ajimu if she wants to take the relationship to the next level since he wants to be with her but she says it’s too suden. He then asks is there someone else she likes. Ajimu replies she doesn’t know. Back at Kazuki and Suzue, Kazuki’s asking it didn’t went well with Hirosuke and also says that it didn’t went well for him too. Kazuki asks Suzue if she’d like to go surfing with him. Ah, I see, this guy has a crush on this girl. Some love triangles here.
 
Ajimu’s watching some video she bought about some angel and hope thingy. She’s really moved while watching the tape. Hirosuke comes home to find Otomine playing video game with his grandma. Sorry, grandma won. Hehe. Then the 2 guys talked about what Hirosuke’s gonna do with Ajimu. Some realizing words from Hirosuke on his love and feelings on Ajimu before they both said simultaneously "I’ll never be that kind of guy", surprising each other. Otomine tells Hirosuke that he proposed to Ajimu (gasp!) earlier today and for his and her sake, he should break up with her. But Otomine guy said things in a very nice manner. Yeah, not like those usual jealous get-away-from-my-girl kinda guys. Otomine’s cool.
 
Ajimu then receives a call from Hirosuke and the latter says that they should stop seeing each other in order not to put her in a spot. He asks her to listen to his feelings and after putting the receiver down, Hirosuke notices that Otomine has left his glasses on the table. He rushes and manages to give it back to him. Then an old lady comes by to ask them for directions. After Hirosuke gives the directions, she crosses the road when suddenly a fast truck is coming her way. Hirosuke then dashes to push her away.
 
At the bar, Ajimu’s gonna use the phone when it rang first. Oh oh, bad news. We then see Hirosuke’s lying in a coma at the hospital with all his friends there, Ajimu’s desparately asking him to open his eyes from the outside as she has lots to say to him. Otomine approaches to comfort her. Ajimu wanted to say something byt Otomine says she doesn’t have to say it. I wonder what it is. Suddenly Hirosuke’s condition is getting worse. Ajimu rushes in and puts the orange seashell in his palm. She then remembers something and goes off quickly. She manages to hail a taxi back to her home and gets her ukelele. Since she didn’t ask for the taxi to wait, she has to run back all the way to the hospital.
 
While running, she’s thinking about Hirosuke and crying when she suddenly trips. What’s this? SURF girl’s there in front of her. To my surprise, SURF girl picks Ajimu up and pushes her way through the line waiting for a taxi and throws Ajimu into the next taxi (poor other guy, being rudely bumped off as he’s getting in). As the taxi goes off, Ajimu says thank you as SURF girl and the other people there just stood there and stare. I’m thinking that SURF girl’s role is just for this part other than comic relief.
 
Ajimu finally arrives back at the hospital and starts singing her song next to Hirosuke in a shaky and teary voice. It seems there’s no effect as Ajimu cries. Poor girl. A teardrop drops onto his palm holding the seashell. Suddenly Ajimu felt a grasp on her hand. Hirosuke has open his eyes! Everybody’s relieved too.
 
At the end credits, we see Otomine leaving the inn happily as he waves goodbye. I suppose he realized that Ajimu’s happier with Hirosuke. Also, Moe’s holding that Ajimu painting in her arms while Kazuki and Suzue become a pair of surfers. Looks like this 2 have become an item too. So is Master and Kyoko. At the hospital, Moe shows Hirosuke recuperating in the hospital bed a different painting of Ajimu with the remarks "Having H in mind now". H must be Hirosuke, I guess. Ajimu then shows him a cartoonish sketch with the words "I’ll be back" on it as everyone laughs.
 
At the train station as Ajimu is seen waiting, SURF girl and Hirosuke are pushing, rushing and racing with each other. Ajimu just smiled at them. Finally, Hirosuke narrates he managed to get out of hospital bed and it’s really the beginning even though summer has ended. Ajimu and Hirosuke looked at each other and smiled as they looked over the blue ocean.
 
In the end
Overall, I like how this short anime turned out. Yeah, that’s because of the happy ending. About Ajimu and Hirosuke’s life together after that would be a totally different story. Nice development of the story and the few characters. I could also say that the drawing, animation and art are quite satisfying.
 
Though the ending song, Orange, sung by Saeko Chiba (who’s also the voice actress for Ajimu) is quite a nice song. I still prefer the acoustic version the best, though it’s shorter. Uh-huh, it gives you that Hawaiian feeling and makes you want to lie on the beach and do nothing. There are also other songs sung by Ajimu during the show which are quite catchy. But I can’t seem to find them anywhere. The opening theme, Futari No Prologue, is equally nice as well, though I felt it’s more of a pop song.
 
Each of the animation for the ending credits are different. Meaning the first episode shows the sketch of the characters in swimsuit (even SURF girl’s there. Ugh… so disgusting), the second episode shows the characters in chibi sketch form, while the third episode shows the headshot animation of the characters. Of course the final episode shows how things are being tied up as the credits roll.
 
Speaking of SURF girl, that’s one character I really find amusing and love to hate. Yeah, I mean, you’ll definitely meet such people in this world but even such people have their good sides and they may help you at times when you least expect them to. So if you’re on a beach vacation, you might one to watch this short series to suite the occassion. I think it’s quite fitting. Of course at other times also can lah.

Memories Off 2nd

March 23, 2007

Another one of those short teenage romance drama, Memories Off 2nd is the second installment and sequel of the Memories Off series. Though it isn’t actually a sequel. In fact all of the Memories Off series are independent of each other and are not related in terms of storyline anyhow.
 
As usual, since this is an OVA, there are only 3 episodes of half an hour each. So you can actually finish this in 1 sitting. It was kinda weird of me to watch the second series first since I’ve never even watched the first one and the rest before. Yeah, maybe I couldn’t find it anywhere and since it wasn’t related, I won’t be scratching my head thinking what has happened that it turned out this way. So okay, here we go.
 
Episode 1
Your usual flashback of 2 teenagers, it’s snowing when Hotaru Shirakawa returns Ken Inami‘s handphone and at the same time confesses she likes him. In addition, she wants him to go out with her. Typical girl meets boy falls in love with him and wants to go dating. I’d thought it would be much later in the series, but since they started it off like that, I’m guessing something else will crop up later on.
 
Back to present time, a day before the summer vacation, we see Ken in some philosophical literature class being taught by an ominous sounding teacher, Tsubame Minami. It’s ironic she got a job as a teacher, the way her voice and tone sounds. Then at the school’s swimming pool, Takano Suzuna is doing some laps and is being timed by her buddy, Kana Maikata, when they heard somone playing a beautiful piano recital in the background, which is Hotaru actually. Then this is the funny part. Takano says how beautiful it is and Kana reiterates "It’s really beautiful". Just then, Takano replied "What are you saying? Me or the piano music is more beautiful?". Hahaha. Perasan betul. But that’s about all you’re gonna see these 2 for the rest of the whole series. What a short appearance. Anyway, Hotaru got up and left, feeling quite happy herself.
 
Back at the dorm, we see Ken and Hotaru together trying to adjust the fan for some breeze. It must be really hot (yeah, both the weather and Hotaru. Haha). Ken reminds her about homework but it seems that Hotaru just wants to play with him (no naughty thoughts here), hugging and hanging her arms around him by his neck. Yup, she has no intentions of doing homework at all, though Ken mentioned it’s really hot, she said she likes really being hot. I’m thinking it must be the weather that they’re referring to.
 
Then their pal, Shin Inaho comes in and asked them what are they 2 studying exactly as their hugging and yelling are annoying everyone else in the dorm. But Hotaru seems to be enjoying it. Later, Shin gave them tickets to the newly opened pool near the sea. As usual, Hotaru wants to go but Ken is worrying about his studies. After Shin and Hotaru pleads to him, only did Ken agreed to come along.
 
So at the pool, the usual stuffs, having fun and we see Hotaru and Ken kissed underwater. After they’re done, Shin goes off for his part time job while Hotaru and Ken walked home together. Hotaru asked if Ken really likes her. Of course he replied yes. Well, duh! Next day, Ken spots and bumps into Tsubame doing some deep analysis and thoughts on vegetables…?! This teacher is really weird. Then they saw a girl, Tomoe Tobise, without an umbrella taking shelter outside a shop. Tsubame then says to Ken that he wants to lend her his umbrella. What’s this? She’s a psychic now? Anyway, she continued saying they can share her umbrella to go home.
 
Ken proceeds to give Tomoe his umbrella. Tomoe thanked him and told him she can’t get those stuffs in her hands wet. Ken said hat she could return the umbrella by looking for him at a family restaurant, Ressac, where he works part time. Soon, off Tomoe goes. When Ken gets back to Tsubame, she tells him how kind hearted he is but that statement wasn’t a compliment. Yeah, she’s blabbing about some hidden meanings like having a good heart can be great evil and that he’ll be pressured by Hotaru to sleep in his room, but since he’s kind, he can’t refuse. Thus, this may cause problems in school if this were to happen. Finally, she says that she’d just given him a warning and whether he wants to be sinful or virtuous is up to him. Tsubame then gives her umbrella to Ken and runs off chuckling with Ken going after her. Now this teacher is really scary.
 
At Ressace, Shin, Ken and Megumi Soma are working there. Megumi seemed lively taking one shot all the finished plates and stacking them up at one go. Is she gonna lose her balance? Nearly. The crowd cheers when she managed to put it all down safely. But as she bows to acknowledge the crowd, her butt accidentally knowcked the stack of plates over. Crash! Oh dear. Clean up time.
 
Soon, Hotaru comes by and is waiting for Ken outside Ressac. When Ken goes outside, Hotaru introduces him to Tomoe, her best friend, as Ken is in disbelief. Coincidence or fate? Hotaru wanted to see the nice guy who lend his umbrella, which turned out to be Ken. Tomoe returns the umbrella and blurts how cool he is and is starting to like him. This caused Hotaru to worry a little, though Tomoe said that it was only a joke and that she wouldn’t make a move on her best friend’s boyfriend. Tomoe then shows them a poster about a theater production she’s in and asks them to come and see.
 
Later that night, Ken’s escorting Hotaru to the train station when the latter wants to stay at Ken’s place. Then a flashback of Tsubame’s words. Oh, the revelation is coming true. But Ken disagrees as a disappointed Hotaru then agrees to go back. Some lovey dovey moments from the 2 as Hotaru reiterates how much she loves him. The train comes as Hotaru gets on board and Ken waves goodbye from outside.
 
As Ken walks home alone, he passed by a park and spots Tomoe. He then heard her saying to herself "I know he’s my best friend’s boyfriend, that’s why I can’t say, because I can’t betray my best friend. At least let me say it in my dreams, I like you". Is that for real or just part of the lines she’s supposed to rehearse for the play. Ken then says to himself that at that point he didn’t know that this meeting would bring a dark shadow over Hotaru and his summer. Sounds really ominous.
 
Episode 2
At some pier, Tomoe’s repeating her play lines to Ken. She breaks into laughter after seeing Ken’s stiff and serious face. She then asks him if he had kissed before, much to Ken’s surprise. Tomoe then laughs again and soon Ken asked her back the same thing. She replied don’t ask that her acting part has a kissing scene though it’s pretend and not real. Some chit chat here and there before Tomoe asked him to practice with her once more. Ken thought it was the kiss, but Tomoe doesn’t know what he’s talking about, making Ken all red faced and he too pretends not to know. Then, Ken receives an SMS from Hotaru saying that she’s coming to his place. But when Tomoe asked who it was, Ken said that it’s just some ad mail. Oh oh. Bad boy. He’s starting to lie.
 
At the dorm, Hotaru gave some ice cream to Shin when the latter tells the former that Ken’s not in. Yeah, she said it would be weird if Ken were to caught them both like that together. And soon she left. Later, Ken and Hotaru are studying together at WacBerger (hahaha). She says she wants to study at home but he says he can’t. Then Tomoe comes in surprising them both. Looks like she’s working here as a waitress. Ken’s asking her about how the rehearsal went but Hotaru seems not sure what they’re talking about. Tomoe then told her that Ken’s helping her with her rehearsal and rehearsed her lines in front of them. Hotaru looking very worried. In addition, Tomoe is asking Ken if he’s free this Sunday to help her out with another job. Since Hotaru has piano lessons, she can’t go but allowed Ken to go help out in exchange that Ken treats her to something more high class than Ressac.
 
Sunday arrives and we see Hotaru receiving an SMS from Tomoe that she’s ‘borrowing’ Ken and will be at the beach. It looks like Tomoe’s other job is as some contestant in some beach couple contest. Ken seems uneasy and unnatural but Tomoe is a total opposite, quite natural and enjoying it. And their interview is being played live over the local radio, in which Hotaru’s tuning in. Soon, Hotaru shuts off the radio and says and unenergetic "Baka".
 
Later after the contest, Ken and Tomoe are resting at the beach, Tomoe explained that she initially wanted him and Hotaru to enter and the pay is actually the prize of the contest. Ken must have felt ‘conned’ in a way, huh. Tomoe says that they didn’t win because of his bad acting. Meanwhile, Hotaru’s playing he piano but her heart’s not in it. Then her sister, Shizuru, comes in and talks with her and noticed the sad tone of her playing. When Shizuru asked if Hotaru and Ken had a fight, Hotaru denies and says how nice Ken is and he plays with her a lot. But her sis told her that what she needs now isn’t practice.
 
Shin and Ken leaves work that evening and Shin asking if he’s gonna come to the fireworks celebration next week. Ken pretends he doesn’t know but Shin saud he eavesdropped on their telephone conversation that he and Hotaru are going. Plus, Shin’s asking Ken to bring Shizuru along, much to Ken’s uneasiness. Then, they both saw Hotaru sitting along down at the beach. Shin walks up to her and asked her to bring Shizuru along for next week’s festival and promised that he won’t disturb them both. Hotaru isn’t sure what Shin’s talking about and Ken’s looking worried. When Shin apologized for eavesdropping, Ken says he must be mistaken and says Hotaru doesn’t like fireworks. Shin then asked who was it on the phone when Ken says no one and runs off. See how far a lie can stretch. Hotaru spacing out there.
 
At the festival, Ken and Tomoe are together there. Tomoe apologized to him for asking him to accompany her as she’s scared of the perverts in the area. So she thought if she’d come with a boyfriend, she won’t have anything to worry about. A brief shock from Ken. Tomoe then continues that it’s just the look part and not that she really means it. She also asked if Hotaru’s mad because they both seemed like a couple. Ken says he didn’t tell her. Tomoe replied that it’s no good and there seems to be feelings of unfaithfulness between them. Ken says it doesn’t look like cheating and is only being a good friend. Tomoe doesn’t feel right and says he should tell her. Some chat here and there like how it’s only been a month but felt like they’ve known each other for a long time.
 
Then they turned and faced each other. Tomoe asking why isn’t he talking and why isn’t he looking at the fireworks. Ken’s answer is why isn’t she too. Some long stare before the both of them kissed! I knew it would all come down to this. Tomoe then dropped some gift she bought for Hotaru earlier on. When the gift breaks and the both of them pushed each other away and Tomoe says "You’re bad… I’m bad too". Ken apologizes but she says he shouldn’t apologize to her. Tomoe then decides to go home and rushes off. Though Ken says he’ll walk her home, she says he can’t and told him to forget this and think of it all as some midnight summer dream before she goes off.
 
Meanwhile, Hotaru is seen waiting outside Ken’s dorm. Shin, who’s walking back, caught a glimpse of her. Hotaru seems to be looking at some wish doll hanging on the balcony. Also some deep thoughts from Ken as he walks back alone. The next day, as Hotaru’s playing the piano, she looked so sad, no mood and heart. She’s thinking about Ken and says to herself that she can’t go on. Oh, the cracks in the relationship are starting to crack even further.
 
Episode 3
The episode starts off with Ken and Hotaru dating. Hotaru seems energetic and happy. Later, she spots some item in a shape of some music note at the store and wants Ken to buy it for her as a good luck charm for her piano recital. After he buys it, Hotaru says it’s her turn to give him a present and asked him to close his eyes. Well, what do you expect? She kissed him, of course.
 
Then a change of scene as we see Ken and Tomoe kissing at that festival. Back at Ressac, Ken can’t seem to concentrate on his work, checking his handphone inbox, much to Shin and Megumi’s displeasure. Uh-huh. Shin’s saying how disrespectful it is to customers. True. You wouldn’t want that as a customer, right? Then we see Hotaru lying on her bed, looking at pictures in her handphone of herself and Ken. That usual sad look from her face so much so she can’t concentrate on her piano practice as she looks at the charm.
 
Meanwhile, Tomoe’s rehearsing but can’t concentrate either as is being scolded by the director. Yeah, she has her spacing out too. Next day, Ken’s walking by the park and caught Tomoe rehearsing that I-know-he’s-my-best-friend’s-boyfriend line. But Ken’s handphone rings which caught Tomoe off guard and her attention. She quickly recovers by saying hi and how he should’ve sounded that he’s here. Ken says he doesn’t wanna interrupt when his handphone rings again. When he answers, it looks like it’s from Shizuru, asking him to ask Hotaru to come home and also she can’t play the piano well since the recital’s tomorrow. Ken says he’ll tell her and goes off to find her with Tomoe deciding to look for her too. At the train station, Hotaru seems spaced out and has some flashback about cheering on Ken in his football match and him listening to her playing the piano. Later, Hotaru’s standing in the rain outside the dorm. Shin saw her sitting on the steps spacing out as she faints and drops the charm. The scene then changes with Tsubame nursing Hotaru in the dorm and Shin saying that he’s leaving Hotaru in her care as he has to leave for work.
 
At the same time, Ken and Tomoe arrived at the backdoor of Ressac. Tomoe apologized that she’s bad and it’s her fault that Hotaru’s missing, but Ken disagrees and that it’s his fault. Yeah, it’s both your fault. Anyway, Ken asked her to dry herself and go home while he searches for Hotaru and lends her his umbrella once again. Tomoe then says he’s nice and said that it would be better if they didn’t meet on that day. A teary Tomoe runs off without taking the umbrella. Shin, who’s eavesdropping came out and told Ken that Tomoe cried so that her can realize something important about whether he likes Hotaru or not. Some more talk of realization before Shin tells him about Hotaru’s condition and where she is now. He continues that if he goes to Hotaru then he chooses her and if he thinks Tomoe is more important, then don’t go or else he’ll cause 2 people to cry. Tough decision kid. Which is it gonna be. Ken then runs off.
 
Back at the dorm, Hotaru seems a little better as Tsubame gave her some medicine. Hotaru mentions that she’ll go home once her fever subsides but Tsubame asked if anyone in her house knows she’s here or not. Hotaru says she told her sis but Tsubame knew she’s lying and she didn’t tell anyone (oh, she’s a lie detector now). Hotaru asked if she could stay here for 1 night as her piano recital’s tomorrow and after that, she won’t play the piano anymore because she loves piano as much as Ken. Then some sad lovers talk before Tsubame asked her why can’t she hate him because if she does, she would be happy. What’s this? Ken’s eavesdropping outside the room.
 
The next day at the piano recital, Hotaru’s getting ready and Shizuru gave her some words of encouragement. But would that suffice? Well, Hotaru seems spacing out. Ken arrives at the entrace but walks away spacing out as Hotaru begins her recital. Then Tomoe arrives and asked Ken what’s he doing and why isn’t he inside. Ken replied that it’s Hotaru’s last time time playing the piano and she wants to break up with him. At the same time, we see Hotaru’s sad facial expression while playing and some flashback of fun times together with Ken. She’s not concetrating. She can’t.
 
Tomoe than says that’s enough and that his acting is really bad though Ken says he isn’t acting. Tomoe says it’s his body language and she’ll show him true acting. Uh-huh, Tomoe rehearsed that I-know-he’s-my-best-friend’s-boyfriend line again. But looks like Hotaru’s case is getting serious. She suddenly stops playing halfway and the crowd’s thinking something must be wrong. Then some words of realization from Tomoe like "Not saying anything isn’t kind" and "If you don’t, you’ll continue hurting more people".
 
With that, Ken got his confidence back ant rushes into the hall. Inside, he shouts her name and everybody looked at that mad idiot who’s doing that (just kidding about the mad idiot part). Hotaru looked surprised. Ken then said some inaudible words (perhaps the producers couldn’t think of the appropriate words to put here) which lifted her spirits as she started playing lively once more. Tomoe then looks up at the sky and cries. She shouts out that she has to try her best too and runs off.
 
That night, Hotaru and Ken are at the bridge where they first met. Ken said he forgot something important that day, that is, when Hotaru confessed, he didn’t reply to her. So he wants to do it again just like that day. Thus, the reacted that moment when Hotaru mentions how his acting still isn’t there and that he must say it with all his heart. Ken does so which made Hotaru happy and relieved. Finally, Hotaru answered that she’ll go out with him. In the last scene, we see Hotaru and Ken attending Tomoe’s play. And that line again from Tomoe. You know which line lah. I’ve heard enough of it already.
 
Conclusion
Overall, I guess it’s kinda okay for a short romance drama and that everything ended in a happy note. Well, I suppose in real life there’re cases which are similar to this and some which are far worse than this. Who says you can’t learn a thing or two from watching animes. See, even if you’re best friends, there’s a danger and risk that your boyfriend/girlfriend may be ‘stolen/snatched’. All because of the mysterious workings of love.
 
One thing I’d like to note is that, when I first heard the opening theme song, Nocturne, which is sung by Mizuki Nana, the opening tune reminded me of that ending song, Rage Your Dream, from Initial D. Well, that’s just the beginning part. The drawing, art and animation are all okay, though I felt that it could’ve been a little better. I must say that I’m quite amused by Tsubame’s voice acting. Though she sounds ominous, but I kinda ‘like it’.
 
As for the other characters, well since it’s a short series, they’re just enough to help the series go by since the series mainly revolves around the uncertainty of the love triangle between Ken, Hotaru and Tomoe. Speaking of which, I find it funny that they called and nicknamed Hotaru, Taru-taru and Tomoe, Toto during the show. Sounds cute but odd too.
 
So next time if you have doubts with your boyfriend/girlfriend, don’t jump to conclusions first. Of course, cheating is bad, real bad. And see how one lie can lead to another. Once it’s too big, it’ll all go out of control. Hey, maybe I should try my hands at being a counsellor. But then again, I might be doing more damage than the current situation. ;p

More worlds, more feathers, more characters and more drama. Yup, the adventures of Syaoran, Sakura and co continues in the second season of Tsubasa Chronicle. The motley crew of 5 feather hunting travellers will encounter more obstacles and challenges this season in their seemingly neverending quest.
 
While watching the second season, there were some parts in certain episodes that didn’t make sense. In other words, crap. Yeah, it was as though as it was just out of convenience and for fillers and such. But perhaps since this is a fantasy dimension hopping adventure, you’d think it’d be okay, right? Not. Didn’t felt like that. I mean, it could’ve been better.
 
But instead of harping on the little bad points, this show isn’t that all bad. And I can say that it’s equal if not a little better than the first season. That’s the reason why I decided to continue watching the second season. At least, there isn’t a world that they’re stuck in for a long 9 episodes (yeah, like the last one in the previous season)! Maybe towards the end, it’s a little bit long, but not so bad actually.
 
With another additional 26 episodes, I believe there’s gonna be some flashbacks and character insights of Fye and Kurogane. Also, this is one of the several anime series where the second season isn’t been given another or additional title. Like most of the other animes which spans a sequel, usually, a second title is given to indicate that it’s the next season and would be deemed ‘another anime title’. Anime fans should know what I mean. Whereas in Tsubasa Chronicle, it’s like a continuation (which it is). And even before the second season was released, there has been plans that a third season would be released in mid 2007! Talk about foresightedness.
 
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves and focus on the second season first. Of course, it’s adviseable to watch the first season first or else you’ll have a hard time figuring and putting lots of things together. The start of the second season doesn’t have that usual long flashback of what happened in the first season. But just a short one just to refresh one’s memories. And they blend it quite well while the gang have already arrived in the new world and not as some beginning-of-the-story-flashback-recap manner. Which is a good thing.
 
So in episodes 27-29, the gang have arrived in Piffle World. Looks like this world is quite futuristic as there are futuristic vehicles zooming in the air and tall futuristic looking towers. But the episode does start off with Syaoran having some kind of weird dream. The one of his mysterious twin in some tube. But Syaoran’s abruptly awaken by Mokona after that. Here, Syaoran and co are planning to enter the Dragonfly Race. Why? Simple. The winning prize for the race is a piece of Sakura’s feather. And just to be safe and increase their chances of getting the prize, all of them are gonna enter it.
 
Also, Sakura seems to hit it off well with Tomoyo Daidouji, the president of the Piffle Princess Company, the organization organising the race, which also seemed to look so much like the Tomoyo princess of Kurogane’s world (duh!). And since the 2 are like so friendly with each other, it reminded me of their relationship back in Card Captor Sakura. Plus, Tomoyo views Sakura as the heroine (meaning winner) of the race. Call it her foretelling powers or biasness, but Tomoyo seems keen on Sakura winning the race. Of course, the legal way lah. Unfortunately, Sakura doesn’t pretty much handle the dragonfly race car too well, crashing it most of the time. It’s a good thing she doesn’t have a real driving licence.
 
The day of for qualifying for the top 12 spots for the final race has come. You know you’ve been hopping to too many worlds when each and every competitors looked like the ones from the worlds that they had visited previously. Coincidence? Hehe. Anyway, to cut things short, the 4 of them managed to qualify for the finals with Sakura and Syaoran coming in the 11th and 12th spot respectively. Yeah, looks like there’s some foreign substance in the engine which made many of the racers facing with engine problems and Syaoran just barely made it. Tomoyo thinks there’s a sabotager among the racers. Hmm…
 
While Syaoran, Fye and Kurogane investigates who may be behind all this, Syaoran befriends another racer, Ryuuoh (that character from that 9 episode long season one) and rekindled some friendship with him, though the latter doesn’t know what’s going on. Yeah, they hit it off like as though they’ve been best friends before. Well, in another time and dimension, that is. At the same time, Tomoyo too is doing her own investigation. And it seems that 2 of the participants, Shougo (from the first world they visited in season 1) and Nokoru of CLAMP Campus Detectives (Akira and Suoh are there too) are part of Tomoyo’s security and entered the race as a precautionary measure.
 
The final race starts with Sakura being chosen as pole position (by chance or bias?). Of course, somebody else is sabotaging the race course as the obstacles themselves have become more dangerous. One by one the finalists have been brought down and even Fye and Kurogane have been taken out. Syaoran and Ryuuoh were also out of the race after Syaoran used his own dragonfly ship to break Ryuuoh’s fall due to some explosion which caused the nearby rocks to crash on Ryuuoh’s dragonfly ship. Looks like it’s up to Sakura.
 
Meanwhile Tomoyo managed to track down the culprit sabotaging the race track, which leads her to the Piffle Princess Building. Syaoran and Ryuuoh also managed to get there after they asked some med ship to take them there. It seems that it’s Tomoyo’s secretary who’s partly behind all this and he’s gonna shoot down Sakura’s dragonfly ship and she’s just moments away from the finish line. Because Syaoran and Ryuuoh worked together to stop him and later have him arrested, Sakura was able to cross the finish line and win the race. However, Syaoran felt that there is still 1 more culprit on the loose.
 
At the prize giving ceremony, before Sakura can absorb her feather, an explosion occurs. And yes, the culprit is one of the racers, the one which looked like Dr Kyle (from that snowy Victorian world in season 1). Wait a minute. He IS the real Dr. Kyle! Oh no. He’s gonna take Sakura’s feather but luckily, Mokona unleashed one of its 108 super secret technique, super sucking (haha) that is, to get it back. Seeing that he has failed, Dr Kyle then opens up a portal and vanishes into it. That’s about all we’ll ever see him for the rest of this season. Bye. See you next time.
 
Then here’s the crap part. Tomoyo tells the gang why she was so eager to let Sakura win. It seems that the Tomoyo of Kurogane’s world came to tell this Tomoyo in her dream that there’ll be some time travellers who’ll come looking for a feather. What the?! Can that Tomoyo do that? Who would she know that Syaoran and co will end up in this world? I mean, the feather has appeared in this Piffle world for over a year already and they actually patiently waited that long? Wouldn’t this Piffle world Tomoyo freak out to see another of herself and telling her this sort of things? Yeah, the power of dreams. Even the Tomoyo of Kurogane’s world had left some message and comments to this Tomoyo to pass the message to Kurogane. But anyway, just before they leave, Tomoyo had one last chat with Sakura saying how she and her company will create some technology to cross dimensions so that they can see each other again. Yeah, you do. In Card Captor Sakura anime, that is. Haha.
 
Episode 30 is the start of several one-episoders. In the next new world… erm… well, actually it isn’t a new world. They’ve actually gone back to one of the worlds they visited in season 1. I felt that the producers may have ran out of ideas of what new world they should make. Anyway, once the gang arrived, Mokona instantly felt a Sakura feather nearby and it looks like it’s embedded in a rock. Upon closer inspection, it’s actually a horn of a dragon. And there’re a few villagers aftering it too. Remember that last episode in season 1, whereby there’s some temple floating in the sky and where Sakura wished for the dead people to come back to life? Yeah, it’s that world again. Actually, Fei Wong Reed has had a hand in it, controlling where they go on their journey, and he wants them to experience a ‘painful’ lesson. I didn’t know this guy could do that. I thought he’s just watching them. Yup, Xing Huo’s still there with him.
 
One of the guys, Sorata, recognized them and was glad that they had returned. Why? It seems that shortly after they’ve left, that God in that temple told them that those who’re brought back to life will be gone during the next new moon. What’s this? Have they been short-changed? So the villagers thought that by doing the same thing like what Sakura did, they’ll be able to prevent this from happening. They managed to obtain the feather as Sakura heads for the temple in the sky and prayed for another miracle. Unfortunately this time, that God refused, saying that lives which have been lost cannot be regained and that earlier miracle was just a short one. What the?! What crap is that?! In the first place if it’s like that, then it shouldn’t happen at all. That God can be a good con artist.
 
This prompts Sakura to have a flashback of one of her memories about failing to bring a dead rabbit back to life. So, the villagers have to come to terms and accept their fate that they’ll be gone when the time comes. We see them disappearing in green sparkles of light and Arashi and Sorata hugged each other before they too disappear (seems that after Sorata died, Arashi also passed away but never told him when they returned, much to Sorata’s surprise when he found out). What a sad episode as the gang prepares to leave. Lesson of this episode: Since life is precious, make the most out of it while we’re alive, given that it cannot be brought back.
 
Another one-episoder for episode 31. This time, instead of landing on land, the gang finds themselves in the middle of the ocean with no land in sight. Luckily, a ship was passing by and picked them up. To their surprise at first, the captain of the boat looked like that villain they encountered back in that Chinese setting world in season 1. But don’t judge a book by it’s cover, the captain who introduces himself as Tanbaru, is a good person actually. A total opposite. Of course in this world too, there isn’t any free ride as the gang has to work to earn their keep.
 
Tanbaru assigns Sakura, Mokona and Fye to the kitchen while Syaoran and Kurogane on the deck. There Syaoran met a young genius boy named Fujitaka, which is a young version of Syaoran’s late father! So mainly this episode sees the interaction between Syaoran and Fujitaka. Some chat here and there as they get to know more about each other. But during a rough storm, both of them were thrown overboard. The rest of the crew thought they may have gone too close to that rumoured dangerous Island Of The Dead, because of some ghostly laughing sound. It’s a feared island among the people of this world and they believe that it’s best to stay away from it. And the next morning, Syaoran and Fujitaka were washed up ashore on that island. Also Kurogane and gang decides to take a small boat there to rescue them because Tanbaru and the rest of the crew were reluctant to go there.
 
But on the island, because Syaoran had previously learned to be an archaeologist, he managed to inscribe some words on some tome and dispel certain myths like that ghostly laughing sound is actually caused by the wind blowing through some tunnel, which made it sound ominous in the first place. A sea monster attacked Kurogane’s boat while they’re on their way but Kurogane had no problem disposing it. Once Syaoran and Fujitaka were rescued and brought back to the boat, they told Tanbaru about the truth of the island, but they said it would be best to continue keeping it as a myth. Soon the gang prepares to leave to another world with Fujitaka telling Syaoran how he wants to become an archaeologist when he grows up and Syaoran whispering "Goodbye father" before they disappear. Well, looks like no feather here. Just a little character development and drama.
 
It’s a hattrick! Yeah, episode 32 is also another one-episoder. And after so long, for the first time this episode involves Fye. Yup, call it luck or what, all this while Fye hasn’t actually met an alter-ego from his world. The episode begins with Fye dreaming of running away from his King Ashura but awoken in a new city shrouded in darkness. In this world, an alter-ego of Touya and Yukito told the gang that people can use magic and the king of this city is chosen by the person they see in their dream. Funny. Have they ever at least heard of an election? Maybe not. So the current king isn’t fulfilling his responsibilities and this in turn caused the city to be covered in darkness and soon the people will start to lose their magic powers. Then 2 of the king’s servants (I think) Sumomo and Kotoko appeared and transport the whole gang to the castle where the king is. They want Fye to use his magic to convince the king, but Fye refuses as he says he doesn’t use magic anymore, resulting in them all being thrown into prison.
 
Kurogane managed to bust them all out but encountered some resistance. Along with Syaoran, they battle the guards as Fye and Sakura made their way up the castle to the king’s room. There to their surprise, they realized that the king is a girl and to Fye’s surprise, she looked like Chi from his world (Chobits fans should recognize her). Some flashback here and there before Sumomo and Kotoko told them that Chi lost her memories and will only regain them once she abdicates her throne. Mokona sensed that Chi may be lonely, unable to go outside and play. Soon, Fye approaches Chi and takes her hand. Then a bright glow of light shone from her and the 2 disappeared.
 
To cut things short, Fye and Chi went on a date. I think it’s part of Fye’s plan to regain her happiness and confidence back. But during their date, Fye and Chi encountered some hostile stone guards. Earlier on, the rest of the gang heard from Touya and Yukito that because Chi was created by some magician, she can’t set foot outside this city or else her magic won’t work and body will disappear. And if something happened to Chi, this city will forever be in darkness. So Kurogane and Syaoran rushed over the help Fye and Chi. But Chi teleports herself and Fye away to the city’s gate. There she tells Fye how she wants to run away with him but Fye refused because by doing so it’ll be a painful thing (like himself?). Some talk here and there.
 
Soon the sun starts rising as tears swelled up in Chi’s eyes. Fye suggests Chi to go back because everyone back there is waiting for her and they both embraced. I’m still not sure how this made the sun rise. Maybe it’s because Chi’s now happy and realized things? Since there’re no feathers here the gang decides to leave to another world with Sumomo and Kotoko thanking them for their efforts. This episode at least gave a little insight about Fye, though not much. I like the part at the end, which I think was made and inserted by a fan. Whereby we see a picture of Hideki crying and some words on screen saying something like "Chi… I thought we had something special…". Hahaha. For those who didn’t watch the series Chobits, this Hideki guy and Chi are supposed to be lovers. And in this episode Chi going out with Fye is like two-timing him. Hahahaha. Well, don’t worry, this is another time and universe.
 
In episodes 33-36, the gang arrived in Shara Country. But the thing is they didn’t land together. Syaoran, Sakura and Mokona end up with a group of female circus troupe, led by Suzuran, while Kurogana and Fye ended up at a shrine and a group of men who seemed to attack them at first but was stopped by the shrine priest, Souseki. To cut things short, it’s the battle of the sexes here. Men and women fight each other and are sworn enemies because they worship different gods. The women worshipped Ashura while the men worshipped Yasha and both sides have a statue of them to worship. Yeah, some RG Veda cross-over here. Though Syaoran is a boy, Suzuran allowed him to stay as a traveller. Yeah, it’s so funny to see Syaoran donning a female costume (the men are banned in this part of the country) and doing several circus acts.
 
Okay, there’re some explanations about the 2 gods but I didn’t quite understand nor remember. Then, even though men and women hate each other, it seems that Suzuran and Souseki are in love with each other and have their secret tryst somewhere in the woods. And they can’t let anybody else know about it or else, you know lah. Then something happened like both Ashura and Yasha statues began to glow and the sky ripped open. Mokona then in a trance sensed that there’s a feather in that rip and transports Syaoran, Sakura, Kurogane and Fye there.
 
Though they arrived in a new world called Shura Country (it’s actually the same world. You’ll see why), Syaoran and Sakura still remained separated from Kurogane and Fye. There, Syaoran and Sakura are taken in by King Ashura, a women and leader of the Ashura tribe, who is fighting against King Yasha and his men. To Syaoran and Sakura’s surprise, they saw Kurogane and Fye fighting alongside King Yasha’s troops. Is it really them? I mean, they didn’t say a thing or indicate that they’re the real thing. Alter-egos of themselves? But both sides were magically transported back once the moon is overhead.
 
Back at King Ashura’s palace, she told Syaoran and Sakura that both tribes have long been battling each other to reach that castle in the sky. The reason? Whoever wins the war will get their wish granted. Hint hint. Of course, Sayoran wants to take part in the battle for reasons we all should know by now. So the night comes an another battle takes place. This time, Syaoran faces Kurogane. Syaoran has doubts whether he’s the real one or just an alter-ego because the sword that Kurogane’s carrying is the one that he got back in season 1 but his eyes were totally black.
 
While the 2 tribes slug it out. Sakura has a dream that of King Ashura and King Yasha’s past like how the 2 were once lovers and a fight between them led the former to injure and scar the latter’s face. Anyway, the fight ends in stalemate again. And the next morning Sakura finds Syaoran a little wounded as she tries to nurse him. Meanwhile in Fei Wong Reed’s lair, it seems that he’s blabbing about can’t having to let Syaoran die yet and he’s been sending him to ‘safe’ worlds and confident of obtaining some power back. Yeah, he’s still cautious about Yuuko. So much so, Syaoran’s eye starts to feel pain from time to time.
 
Anyway, once Syaoran is better, he and Sakura went to town to inquire more information about Kurogane and Fye. But during their time there, Syaoran’s pain in his eye starts to get worse and he could see multiple copies of himself in a reflected mirror nearby. I think King Ashura and Yuuko knows each other. I mean by the way the communicate and say things. Why, earlier on, King Ashura sent some eternal youth jar through Mokona so that she could get her wish to send Syaoran and co to Shura Country and messed up and broke Fei Wong Reed’s control over their journey. I don’t get it. How did King Ashura know about them in the first place? Through Yuuko? Maybe.
 
Another war looms that night as Syaoran and Kurogane resumed their unfinished business while King Ashura takes on King Yasha one-to-one. But it seems that Syaoran’s arms are moving on its own due to that alter-ego Syaoran back in Fei Wong Reed’s lair. When King Ashura stabbed King Yasha, they embraced before the former kissed the latter’s scarred eye. Then King Yasha disappears and becomes a glowing Sakura’s feather.
 
To cut things short, King Yasha had died a very long time ago and the one we saw was just and illusion, made possible by the power of the feather. And since King Ashura’s the only one left standing at the castle, she makes a wish for King Yasha to be revived back after giving back the feather to Syaoran and Sakura. But it’s impossible for that wish to come true as the castle starts to crumble. Syaoran saved King Ashura from the crumbling blocks and told her how once a person is dead, he/she cannot be revived, something which he learned during his travels (yeah, back in episode 30). Then King Ashura contacts Yuuko and wants her to make another request, that is to make both Ashura and Yasha into gods for the future of the world, as proof that even there’re things that gods cannot do.
 
Back on land, the castle in the sky disappears and Syaoran told one of King Ashura’s general that if he should ever find the remains of King Ashura and King Yasha, they should be buried together, which he agrees. Soon Mokona transport them back to Shara Country. Then we find out that the Kurogane and Fye Syaoran battled then were the real ones. Although not sure why their eyes turned black, because they were transported without Mokona, they’re unable to communicate with each other. But it seems Kurogane understood a little of the Yasha’s tribe language and did the talking (how ironic). And the reason why he didn’t tell Syaoran they were the real selves was because Kurogane wanted Syaoran to be serious when he fights him. If Syaoran had known the truth, he wouldn’t go all out.
 
But the thing which caught me by surprised is that the gang didn’t actually transport to another world, but back to the past! Yeah, all those battles that happened were actually happened in the past. Uh-huh, Shura Country is actually the past of Shara Country. And they changed the future, huh. Then I thought, if it was the past, then Sakura’s feather should’ve been in the present time when they first arrived right? I mean, they didn’t have to go all the way back in time to get it. Unless, going back in time to retrieve it was the reason why the feather isn’t in the present in the first place.
 
Back at Shara Country, the gang is surprised to find that the men and women are now getting along very well. It looks like the circus troupe members don’t remember who Syaoran and Sakura is. And the gang are back just in time to witness a wedding ceremony between Suzuran and Souseki. They also saw a statue of Ashura and Yasha together as one with a strand of Syaoran’s hair and Sakura’s ribbon in a box below it. They changed the future alright. Then Mokona swallowed up 2 swords from the statue and sends it to Yuuko as payment for making both gods. And looks like they’re off to another world. Meanwhile, Fei Wong Reed watches in frustration as his plans had go a little awry with Yuuko’s intervention. But he’s not gonna let this small hurdle stop his ultimate goal and prepares to plan for his next step.
 
It’s back to another on-episoder in episode 37. But this time, except Mokona, the rest of the gang are in chibi form! Yeah, those 4 ended up in some story book. Mokona wakes up to find that Sakura’s feather is attached to a pen. Then a lady storyteller appears and agrees to return the feather to Mokona because he asked but Mokona must find a way to get them out of the story first.
 
What do you expect if Mokona’s the scriptwriter. Uh-huh. Some hilarious ideas he got there. He makes Kurogane as Syaoran and Sakura’s homeroom teacher and the latter 2 are supposed to be childhood friends with a promise to marry each other. Typical. While Syaoran and Sakura are having lunch, Syaoran’s being dragged away by Fye, who’s another teacher, to decipher some inscriptions. What is that Mokona shaped statue doing there? Oh well. And it seems that Souseki and Suzuran are archaeologists too. Syaoran deciphers it as a warning not to touch some golden jar, which Fye then showed him is it the one. Darn. Some black smoke comes out of it and it possesed Kurogane who’s having lunch nearby and turned him into a monster. Well, it looked like Kurogane wearing a monster suit. And Syaoran continues to decipher that the only way to seal it back is to kiss in front of the ruins.
 
Well, Syaoran and Sakura nearly had one, that is, until an explosion blew them away. In the end, Souseki and Suzuran kissed, making that Mokona statue to glow and a mecha Mokona (I didn’t know this creature was that creative) sucked the monster Kurogane along with Syaoran, Sakura and Fye into its stomach, before spitting them out through Mokona’s real mouth and into the real world. Though the 4 of them don’t seem to remember their time there, Mokona finds the storyteller missing. Even that portrait of her in the picture is gone. Mokona felt a little down but Sakura told Mokona that he could keep that feather for a little while and could return to her when they land in their next world, much to Mokona’s happiness. As the gang jumps to the next world, the current world then slowly becomes white and everything in it vanishes. Um… So is that world real or not? But this episode is quite a light-hearted one.
 
The gang landed on a desert road which looked like those in America in episodes 38-39. Bad news number 1. They’re in the middle of the road and a truck is coming fast their way. Okay, luckily they managed to get away in time. Bad news number 2. The feather Mokona was holding seemed to slip from his hands and got stucked to that truck. And that truck is going away. I suppose giving chase won’t do. You can’t outrun a truck at that speed. Fortunately a bus arrives. But bad news number 3, they need to pay for a fare in order to ride it. But there’s no conductor or bus driver in this automated bus. Luckily one of the bus passengers, Yuzuriha (the one from that long 9 episodes back in season 1) offers to pay on their behalf in exchange they help her with something.
 
There’re other passengers on the bus as well. A lady named Chitose, a loving couple on the run Shougo and Primera, and an old man that Syaoran and Kurogane bought their swords back at that previous season long 9 episodes story. Yuzuriha agreed to be that old man’s companion but finds it hard to strike up a conversation with him, which is what she wants them to help her with. Meanwhile, Shougo and Primera are suspicious about them because they think that Syaoran and co are aftering them. But Syaoran says he has nothing to do with them. Also Yuzuriha seems to pretty much click with Sakura. This Sakura girl can really make friends fast anywhere and anytime.
 
The bus then stops at a rest stop and the truck is there as well. And because that truck has stopped there for quite a while, it will soon be on its way again. Which means Syaoran has little time to grab the feather. Unfortunately, he didn’t managed to grab it but he injured his hand in the process. Yuzuriha who saw this then felt determined to help them. Another unfortunate thing is that, since it’s an automated bus, there’ll be at the rest stop for a designated time before it proceeds. Meaning their distance between the truck will always be constant.
 
Soon the bus moves but when it’s nightfall, it completely stops. According to Yuzuriha, there is a law which prevents travel at night, so all vehicles are grind to a complete halt. Bad news too. But good thing is, this will apply to that truck too. I guess this world the gang has encountered strings of bad luck when a group of biker gangsters decides to ambush the bus and they have already disabled the bus’s defence system. Syaoran and Kurogane stepped out and prepared themselves to face the gangsters. But part of Syaoran’s plan is to seize one of the bikes and go after the feather. Unfortunately, one of the gangsters blew up that bike before Syaoran could get away. Due to the might of Syaoran and Kurogane, the gangsters then decided to retreat for now.
 
Chitose fixes the bus defence system and the gang found out that she actually works for the company who made this kind of busses. She got tired of it all and took a trip to look for some answers in life for her future. We also find out that Primera’s some famous star but she got tired of her kind of life too (yeah, signing autographs until her hand got swollen) and decided to run away with her manger-cum-lover, Shougo. Thus, they’re running away from all those paparazzis and such. Mokona then sensed that the truck has stopped because the ‘Mekkyo’ feather feeling seems closer than it is. Upon reaching there, that truck seems to have a flat tyre. But it’s across the railroad. Yup, you’ve guessed it, a train is coming. Such nice timing.
 
Chitose tries to overwrite the auto pilot of the bus to a manual one (should have done that in the first place) to speed the bus up. Since the train is blocking them and that truck is going to move, after some auto self repair, Kurogane sprung Syaoran in the air over the passing train with his sword. Syaoran managed to cling onto the truck. But it seems that those biker gangsters are back and is gonna ruin it all by attacking Syaoran. Luckily, due to Chitose’s overwriting, she managed to control the laser beams on the bus and fired away at them. Just when Syaoran got hold of the feather, one of the missiles is heading for Syaoran and the laser beam missed it. This caused an explosion and sent Syaoran flying in the air but he was luckily caught by Kurogane and Fye on top of the bus below. Safe.
 
The bus finally reached its destination and everyone got off. Everyone thanked Syaoran and co and said their goodbyes. I guess the journey did change for a few. Like how Chitose’s glad she met Syaoran and can now move forward in life. Also, Shougo and Primera decides to tell the public about their relationship and not run away anymore. Then there’s something said by that old man which I couldn’t remember, something about life and not giving up.
 
Episode 40 is totally different and is quite refreshing. Why? Because this entire episode is a flashback on Kurogane’s past. Yeah, looks like the series takes a break from that feather hunting journey. It seems that when Kurogane was young, he seems cheerful and loved his monster slaying father and miko (priestess) mother very much. In the land of Suwa, Japan where Kurogane lived, it’s always under constant attacks from monsters and his father and his men must shoulder the burden to protect the country.
 
To cut things short in this sad episode, Kurogane’s father along with his other men died while trying to protect the country as the monsters’ attacks have become stronger and stronger. Then this is the part which I felt was done out of convenience. While Kurogane’s mom was praying in a room, some portal appeared and a hand with a sword stabbed her before it disappeared back. What the? Hmm.. But that symbol on that hand looked like the one like Fei Wong Reed. Anyway, Kurogane can only watch in horror. His father dropped that Ginryuu sword and Kurogane remembered some words like protect the ones he loved and becomes totally enraged and charged back at the monsters. He must have destroyed them all because that part was blacked out.
 
Later the empress of Japan came by and saw the place decimated and Kurogane sitting there with Ginryuu in total shock with his dead mother in his arms. The empress’s younger sister Tsukuyomi (looks like Tomoyo) tried to approach Kurogane but was attacked instead. Looks like Kurogane’s gone insane and he’s just gonna attack anybody. Tsukuyomi tried to calm Kurogane down but he still charges at her. When Kurogane’s calmed down, he only realized that both his parents were gone and cried uncontrollably with the others looking on. Hmm… I guess that’s why Kurogane grew up to be a tough survivor. Then back to present time, we see a teardrop from Syaoran in shock mode as he falls backwards. Fye grabs the book away from him and Kurogane caught him. Syaoran then apologizes to Kurogane, still crying. :'(
 
So it’s back to the present (new) world in episodes 41-43. It seems that in a library, there’s a magic book called the book of memories, which the first person to touch it will have his memories/past life transferred there and the next person who touches it will receive it. That’s what happened to Syaoran as he wakes up in the medical room with the rest of the gang next to him relieved. Mokona told them that they’re in a world called Rekoruto Country, a world filled with magic and… books. They also noticed that the book of memories has a pattern of Sakura’s feather on its cover. Upon further inspection, that book of memories is just a replica and the real one which has the Sakura’s feather is kept somewhere deep within the central library. Also, there’ll be some moments between Syaoran and Kurogane as the former understands the latter a little more and additional flashbacks of the aftermath of Kurogane since his parent’s passing.
 
So the gang head there but was told by the librarian that they’re not allowed to borrow the real book of memories. She continues to tell them that 3000 years ago some evil magician used that powerful feather and brought disaster to the world. Since then, the feather has been kept safely in the book of memories under the custody of the central library. But Syaoran is still bent on getting it and suggests of sneaking in. The gang walks down a long halfway before reaching an arch guarded by another librarian. She mentions that this is another security measure to protect the real book of memories. That is, if a person who walks through the gate with an intent of stealing the book, the security system will electrocute them. After some self believing (or rather rearranging their intentions) they managed to pass through the gate.
 
Mokona leads the group to where the feather is until they reached some magical barrier in the form of bookshelves. After pushing it away, some guardian beasts awakens and attacks them. Syaoran and Kurogane fights them but there’re many more approaching. So they all ran towards a glowing portal at the end of the path. They arrived at a desert landscape. Syaoran and Sakura recognized this as their Clow Kingdom! Could it be for real? Fye mentions that this maybe part of Sakura’s memories and how much she could remember it since the place is devoid of people as the gang explore their surroundings.
 
Anyway, Fei Wong Reed is going to unleash his new plan and it has something to do with that alter-ego Syaoran in the tube. Mokona managed to sense a feather at the place where Sakura lost her feathers/memories back in episode 1. So Syaoran and Kurogane went down to get it only to be faced with a guardian beast. Then Syaoran fell into a trance and that alter-ego Syaoran took control over Syaoran’s body movements. Kurogane noticed that he had become more violent and not himself as he destroyed the beast and rips the feather off the book and throws the book away. It seems when Syaoran comes to, he doesn’t remember what he has done. The place then reverts back to some dark hallway of the library as Sakura absorbs her feather.
 
By this time, the entire city is on alert that the feather has been stolen and more guardian beasts are going to attack them. Once outside, the road has been flooded and surprisingly Fye used his magic for the first time to protect them while Mokona prepares to teleport the group. Just when they thought they had arrived to another world, Mokona then felt sick and the gang realized that they’re still in Rekoruto Country.
 
So until Mokona recovers, the rest of the gang have to seek refuge in the library and avoid being detected by the authorities. Mainly here, Syaoran gets a continuation of Kurogane’s flashback when the latter accidentally touches the book of memories. Deja vu again. But I’m not gonna delve into details. Except Tsukuyomi, who’s actually Tomoyo makes Kurogane agree to 5 oathes if he’s to have Ginryuu. While Syaoran’s receiving Kurogane’s memories, the authorities have arrived and surrounded the library. The magic barrier couldn’t hold much longer as Kurogane went ahead to fight. Shortly once Syaoran snapped back into reality, he joins Kurogane.
 
But before the fight can start, the central librarian woman tells them that since the feather was stolen it has caused some insecurities and thought that they might have used it for evil purposes. But since the feather has been absorbed into Sakura and the security can no longer detect the feather’s presence, she commended them and in a way Syaoran and co ‘disposed off’ the feather. It’s funny to see that guardian beast turned into a chibi and friendly one, and it’s all over Kurogane playfully, much to his annoyance. Though the librarians wanted to hold a feast to and offer some reward for their efforts, they declined and apologized for the inconvenience caused. Mokona, who feels better now, gets ready to take the gang on to the next world.
 
Though this one-episoder episode 44 is hilarious but there are some moments which are illogical. The gang arrived in a seemingly uninhabited world filled with lush forests. Surprisingly, an ever energetic Mokona feels a little down here. So Mokona had some chat with Yuuko. Looks like this white creature is homesick. That night, Mokona seemed to be indecisive who he wants to sleep with. And he told Sakura that she moved around too much, much to Sakura’s little shock. Mokona wants to sleep with everybody, but due to circumstances and size, he can’t. But the next morning, everyone wakes up to find that Mokona had turned into a giant! Well, no actually. The 4 of them shrunk. Then Kero arrives before Mokona accidentally stepped on them. Yeah, looks like this is Kero’s second appearance after the first one as a mascot back in episode 28’s Piffle World.
 
Kero is supposed to be some guardian deity of this world and he earlier sensed a saviour coming to this world. As they regrouped at Kero’s tree house, Kero tells them of a magic feather which fell on top of the mountain, making all humans of this world tiny. Hmm.. which explains why this world seems devoid of life. And through Kero’s dream, he knew that Mokona would be the saviour. Well, dreams do come true. So pay heed to them. Since Syaoran and the rest are too small, they’re left behind at Kero’s house as Mokona and Kero tries to retrieve that feather. Since this is Mokona’s episode, I guess the rest will just have to sit back and wait for his return, even though Syaoran and Sakura wanted to go help Mokona so much. Believe in him.
 
Then this is the crap part. I wonder why Kero and Mokona need to climb up the mountain and meet up with all those hazardous obstacles when they both can actually fly!!! Yes, they both can fly. And wouldn’t it be much faster that way? I like the funny part whereby Mokona seems to be giving up and gonna fall asleep when Kero tries to persuade him to stay awake by singing. Mokona unenergetically sings but when he finishes, Kero remarked to himself in a funny tone how horrible it sounds. Hahaha. The 2 finally managed to reach the peak and saw a protective barrier around the feather. Mokona also saw a butterfly in there and thought that it must have wished for humans to be tiny like it. Is that what butterflies wished for? Equality in size?
 
Anyway, Kero blasts open the barrier and Mokona has a short period to retrieve it, which he does. I wonder why Kero didn’t do it all on his own in the first place? They both returned to Kero’s house to find Syaoran and co still small. Kero says that the effect of returning to normal may take some time. So Mokona had this great big idea of sleeping with everybody by huggin everyone as he sleeps. Looks like he got his wish. Another funny moment is when Sakura wakes up the next morning, she finds herself sitting on top of Mokona. Squashed! But he’s alright as Mokona and Kero hugged each other goodbye, Mokona felt happy now even though they’re gonna part. I’m not sure what the swarm of butterflies sudddenly fluttering about means but Sakura suggests they all may be saying goodbye to Mokona. Hmm… And Kero hopes to see Mokona again as they departed. Yeah, maybe in some other CLAMP production cross-over.
 
I thought it would be another new world for episodes 45-46. But looks like the producers decided to revisit another previous world. Yeah, the one where the gang met and befriended a girl named Chun Hyang in that Chinese setting world. But as soon as the gang arrived, to their surprise they discover that a mob, led by Sorata, is attacking a bunch of monsters and then Chun Hyang because the latter protested to their aggressiveness against the monsters, saying that the monsters aren’t their enemy. Chun Hyang is relieved to find Syaoran and co back again when Syaoran managed to catch her from falling to her death due to the mob’s attack.
 
The gang finds out that shortly after they’ve left, the people of the sorceress Kishimu started attacking their village and stealing souls. And since Chun Hyang believed that it isn’t Kishimu’s doing, she has been alienated from the rest from the villagers. But is it Kishimu’s doing? I mean, Mokona sensed a Sakura feather when some of Kishimu’s people arrived from a portal to attack on the village. But Kishimu then appeared and tried to stop them but instead they attacked her and Kishimu got wounded in the process. And she transformed herself into some weird looking talisman to heal herself.
 
Sorata and the rest of the villagers came to a conclusion that Chun Hyang may be in cahoots and protecting Kishimu and went to go up against Kurogane and Fye. Luckily Syaoran and Chun Hyang arrived in time before they started. Just then, Kishimu transformed back into her normal self and as a result a violent vortex is created. Mokona sensed a feather through the vortex, in which Syaoran immediately entered it. Before the vortex closes, several others were also pulled into Kishimu’s world, Kurogane, Chun Hyang and Sorata.
 
Kishimu then explains to them that shortly after she transported that tyrant ruler and his son Burugaru to her world, Kishimu managed to dispose off that old fart first but before she can lay her hands on Burugaru, a feather dropped in his hands and he managed to overpower Kishimu. Since then, he has been controlling Kishimu’s world and people through it. Thus, Kishimu hopes that the problem can be resolved if they get the feather back.
 
Meanwhile back on the other side, Mokona explains to the rest that those sucked into the vortex may have actually gone to a reverse/mirror world to the current one. One reason why everybody can still understand each other. Yeah, some cute illustration drawn by Mokona there. Back in Kishimu’s world, Syaoran and Kurogane decides to go find the feather while Kishimu finds a place to hide Chun Hyang and Sorata. Some talk between Kishimu and Chun Hyang about the latter’s mom and such.
 
Then this part I don’t understand. Sakura and Fye are standing under a bridge next to a stream, which is the exact spot in the mirror world where Kishimu and Chun Hyang are standing. Then with the power of Chun Hyang’s mirror that Sakura has in her hands, she was able to cross-over to the mirror world and give Chun Hyang her mirror. Huh? That easy? Now with her mirror, Chun Hyang is able to launch her Hijutsu attack. Also Sorata realized that he’s wrong and apologized to Kishimu. However, the people of Kishimu’s world spots Chun Hyang and confronts her. Instead of using her mirror and Hijutsu, Chun Hyang decides to use the power of persuasion which turned out to be successful. This reminded Kishimu about how similar it was to Chun Hyang’s mom that time, not using power to become true power, the strongest Hijutsu.
 
At the same time, Syaoran and Kurogane are facing resistance from Burugaru’s controlled guards. But Syaoran managed to defeat them and Burugaru easily and recovers the feather. Can’t believe that guy got knocked out just after one kick from Syaoran. Must be a real good kick. So as Syaoran and co prepares to leave to the next world, we see Kishimu suggesting that both worlds should be linked and that they don’t have to fight each other anymore. Perhaps you should have done that earlier on. Oh wait, maybe it all started because of that old tyrant guy. At least everybody’s on good terms now.
 
In episode 47, the gang arrived in a world which reminds you of The Great Depression and noticed Sakura’s feather being lavishly decorated and displayed at a shop’s window for sale. As they enter to purchase it, the shop owner, Oruha tells them its price. Don’t remember but it’s really really really expensive. Yeah, seems that in this world, inflation is quite high. Even though Syaoran said he just wanted the feather only, Oruha says that she’s just doing business. And the only way they can obtain it (not resort to stealing lah) is by finding a job. And they have to do it within 3 days because Oruha will only reserve it for that period and or else after 3 days, anybody with the right amount of money can buy it.
 
So the guys started looking for a job but Syaoran told Sakura to stay back as this world seems to dangerous and to watch over the feather. And later after some dream, Sakura wakes up and realized that she just can’t sit around and with Mokona, went out to look for a job. Meanwhile, Syaoran and the rest are having a hard time landing one, but soon managed to accept a ‘dangerous’ one. Part of Sakura’s job include working at some road stall bistro with a Touya and Yukito look-a-like but the stall soon broke down, then driving some cart in a warehouse but crashing the cart (remember her bad driving skills?). Soon Sakura she gets a waitress job at a pub. But trouble soon ensued. Three punks appeared and wants the pub owner to hand over the pub to them. But when they went after Sakura, suddenly Syaoran, Kurogane and Fye sprung into action to help. Looks like the pub owner has hired these 3 for a ‘dangerous’ job to protect the pub. Of course Syaoran and Sakura were surprised to see each other. But soon they had no trouble scaring off those cowardly punks.
 
Because of that, they managed to earn a large sum of money and returned to the shop to purchase the feather from Oruha. With that, Sakura absorbs the feather and it seems her the memories of this feather is like a continuation of her dream earlier on, when a young Sakura’s at a marketplace helping an apple seller selling apples to the crowd. And she’s enjoying it.
 
Episodes 48-52 will be the last world the gang will visit for this season. Before that we see Fei Wong Reed saying some super power will soon begin and a giant stork dropping a piece of Sakura’s feather. The gang again didn’t arrived in the new world on land. Well, at least they’re not submerged in water this time. Actually, they appeared from a high altitude in the sky and they’re free falling! Luckily some blue flame surrounded them and slowed their fall, making them land safely. Fye denied that he used his magic and they’re soon picked up by 2 travellers. The travellers explained to them about magic called Senriki, which anyone can use it in this world called Tao. But the usage and power depends on the type of Senriki and there’re 4 types of them (not that I remember them).
 
The gang then reached the main town and was instantly approached by 2 guards who knew Sakura’s name. This is because the king of Tao, King Chaos can foresee the future and thus invite them to see the king in his palace. There, Syaoran and co were surprised to see King Chaos with several of Sakura’s feathers being made into a fan. And King Chaos agreed to give Sakura all her feathers provided they tell him about their feather hunting dimension hopping journey. Seems easy, doesn’t it? So the gang take turns to tell their story. Kurogane seems to have his doubts but King Chaos returns several feathers as proof. It can’t be that easy, can’t it?
 
Hmm… I’m sensing something amiss here, but not too sure what it is. That night when Sakura’s sleeping, King Chaos comes into her room and strokes her hair and says how he’d finally meet his princess. Does this guy know her? The next morning, Syaoran, Kurogane and Fye are geared up to retrieve more feathers after being told that there’s a giant stork which possesed more of Sakura’s feathers. King Chaos says he didn’t go retrieve it because he believes he doesn’t use his Senriki to fight. And it seems that Syaoran and co can use theirs to fly there. Once Syaoran managed to find the bird, they tried to retrieve the feathers but was knocked down by it. Meanwhile as Sakura regains her memories in her dream through the feathers she just received earlier on, it seems that King Chaos came to rescue a young Sakura when she was attacked by a giant sand worm. Looks like King Chaos does know Sakura.
 
And mainly in Sakura’s recently retrieved memories, there’ll be moments of Sakura and King Chaos together, like as though they’re quite good friends and how he promised to accompany her on her travels and protect her. Meanwhile, Syaoran and co who were knocked down to the misty ground below, seems to be surprised to face their old foes. Remember Seichirou? I was wondering when he’s gonna make his appearance in this season. He faces Syaoran while Fye takes on King Ashura and it’s Kurogane against his father. But soon the gang realized that it’s just an illusion. Oh well, I guess that Seichirou guy really didn’t make his real appearance in this season. Soon the fake opponents left and the 3 gave chase.
 
Meanwhile, King Chaos shows a miniature replica of Clow Kingdom to Sakura, which he claims he made as a commemoration when he visited there. He then asks Sakura about the promise whereby he’ll travel and protect her. When Sakura said she remembered, King Chaos then suggested that he’d go travelling with her in place of Syaoran and the others. Mokona objects and soon Sakura declined his offer after some thought. And looks like the reason why those fake opponents left was because King Chaos had recalled them. Realizing that his efforts were futile, he traps Sakura in some energy barrier while Syaoran and co soon arrived. At this point, I’m thinking that the feathers that King Chaos gave him were ‘tampered’ or fake, but Mokona does seemed to acknowledged that it’s real. Hmm…
 
Anyway, King Chaos is gonna show Sakura how powerless Syaoran and co are by fighting him to convince her. He spawns more monsters but were soon defeated. Kurogane charges at King Chaos but the former was easily defeated. Then it’s Fye’s turn as King Chaos mocks him saying that though he possesed great powers but not using them is the same as not having any powers at all and knocks Fye out cold. Now it’s Syaoran’s turn. During the fight, Syaoran is no match for him and his sword even broke. Once it’s over, King Chaos hypnotized Sakura and opens up a portal behind him and decides to go on their dimension hopping journey. But after seeing tears swelling up from Sakura eyes, he decides to abandon his plan just for now, thinking that forcing her to travel with him and against her will would be no different than to travel without her. So he takes Sakura and goes off to the castle.
 
Later, Mokona gets help from the 2 travellers they encountered earlier on and lots of spacing out and uncertainty from Syaoran. So we see Fye using his magic for the second time by brewing some medicine and Kurogane contacting Yuuko asking her to borrow his Ginryuu to Syaoran but Yuuko refused. So after some words of encouragement and self belief, Syaoran decides to go after Sakura not for her sake, but his. Fye gives him his potion while Kurogane hands Syaoran his current sword as Syaoran thanked them all. Looks like the gang believes in Syaoran. And it was quite funny to see Mokona trying to kiss Kurogane because he felt that Kurogane truly trusts him, much to Kurogane’s annoyance.
 
Anyway, Syaoran and Fye sneaked around to find some information on King Chaos and found out that he inherited some power which created this country. Meanwhile Kurogane searches for a blacksmith (an alter-ego of Touya and Yukito) to fix Syaoran’s sword and even gives Syaoran a little training. Later, Fye and Mokona sneaked into King Chaos’s castle. But they seem to meet no resistance as the guards there disappeared to somewhere. Well, it seems that Xing Huo and her black warriors have penetrated the palace but since they’ve been disposed off easily, Xing Huo decides to withdraw. I wonder what was that all for?
 
Fye and Mokona found out that the feathers that Sakura received were indeed fake, which means the memories too are fake. So it’s true that it’s fake. Hehe. They saw Sakura discarding feathers which are all dark coloured now. Then King Choas comes in and spots them. He tells them to pass a message to Syaoran and says that he wants to challenge Syaoran, whereby the winner gets to travel with Sakura.
 
The next day as the battle starts, both seemed equal in terms of skill as they clashed swords. Sakura, watching from the palace grounds cheered on for Syaoran, ignoring King Chaos’s orders to stay quiet. Then King Chaos decides to take drastic action by freezing Sakura in a huge ice block while he let his 2 guards keep Syaoran at bay. King Chaos said that since he can’t change Sakura’s feelings, he’ll freeze her body, mind and soul and take her on their travel anyway. He also mentions how jealous he is of Syaoran and transformed into that giant stork. Oh, so now King Chaos is that bird too. He swoops down on them and starts shooting fireballs.
 
Syaoran wants Kurogane and Fye to save Sakura while he acts as a decoy. Unfortunately, those black troops appear and barred them from getting closer. At the same time, that alter-ego Syaoran opened his eyes, which affected the real Syaoran. Then we see Sakura in some sort of a dream speaking to King Chaos. What’s this. King Chaos asking Sakura to save him or else lots of people are gonna get hurt. Is this King Chaos’ other personality? Then he decides to show Sakura his true form and by doing so, the black troops disappeared and that alter-ego Syaoran’s eyes closed, releasing the real Syaoran from his hypnotisim. Also, Sakura managed to break free from the ice because she borrowed the powers that King Chaos lent her. Thus, she runs towards Syaoran and asked him to save King Chaos.
 
Then Touya and Yukito rushed to the scene to give the fixed sword to Syaoran. Now wielding 2 swords, he powers up and is able to match the powerful blasts of the giant stork. Syaoran managed to defeat the giant stork which then turned back into King Chaos who admits defeat. Then this is the shocking part. It is revealed that King Chaos’s ultimate true form is actually a cluster of Sakura’s feathers!!! Unbelievable! So Sakura is King Chaos and vice versa. It seems that the feathers have some sort developed a mind of its own and eventually in the form of King Chaos, yearned for Sakura because he’s part of her memories. Uh-huh. Is that the powers of her feathers also? Sakura and King Chaos hugged before the latter disappears into sparkles of lights and feathers! Yeah, it’s raining feathers!!!
 
But the thing which bugged me was, how come Sakura only managed to get 1 lousy feather. I mean, what happened to the rest? Where did they go? So I thought their journey would end here, but it seems because of so, they’ll have to continue as Mokona mentioned that there’re many more feathers to be retrieved. Furthermore, Fye and Mokona wants to carry on travelling. Syaoran hopes that one day he’ll recover all of Sakura’s feathers. But for now let’s just take it one step at a time. I felt that that heap of feathers were ‘wasted’ or just for show since Sakura didn’t managed to absorb them. Bummer.
 
We see Yuuko quite please with the way things turned out and even Fei Wong Reed doesn’t seem too worry about it as he says that there’s still enough time to make their next move. Yeah, that’s because there’s another season to it. Finally, Syaoran and co arrived in another new world and their journey continues.
 
Overall, for a fantasy adventure anime, I could say that I quite enjoy it, though I’ve mentioned that there’re some illogical moments. But that’s just a small thing and I shouldn’t think so much about it. The drawing, art and animation is consistant with the first season, so no new surprises. Also, the mid-intermissions seemed to be ‘halved’. Meaning, in the first season, you’ll get to see 2 pictures of the series’ characters. Whereas in the second season, there is only 1 picture.
 
Of course there’s some character development in this series but there’re some which still remains a little mystery like Fye and that alter-ego Syaoran in Fei Wong Reed’s lair. I suppose more about them will be revealed in the next season so keep your fingers crossed. Also, Mokona is still cute and genki as ever, though we’ve seen a little of his down side. Yeah, still doing that next episode preview and saying his "Puu~" lines. And everyone said that in the last episode, even a reluctant Kurogane, all in chibi form. Hehe.
 
The second season also used some background music and soundtrack from the previous season and also some new ones too. Speaking of which this season has 2 album soundtrack bringing the total to 4 Future Soundscape original soundtracks. That’s a lot of songs there. Also, somehow I didn’t find the opening and ending songs for this season to be as appealing as the first season. I noticed the same singers did the opening and ending with Kinya’s IT’S and Maaya Sakamoto’s Kazemachi Jet respectively. Maybe there’ll do the same thing for the third season? High probability.
 
So till then, I’ll be waiting till the next season arrives. And maybe by then, it’ll answer lots of unanswered questions. Come to think of it, Sakura really does have lots of feathers. Perhaps it’s because each feather consists of a short memory. Yeah, probably they’ll be able to stretch it to season 4 and beyond. But just like Syaoran and co, let’s just take it all one step at a time. And if you really can’t wait, there’s always the manga. So see you next time, doki doki… Puu~!

Tenma VS Tohru

March 16, 2007

It’s that time again. Another one-on-one versus. Yes, this time it will be 2 lovely pretty kawaii bishoujos of anime (that depends on one’s opinion too). Who is it gonna be? Well, it’s Tenma Tsukamoto of School Rumble fame and Tohru Honda of Fruits Basket. Of course there are some similarities and differences between the two. And that’s what make them so loveable (well, sort of). Okay, here we go:
 
School
Every girl at the age of 16-17 years old (both girls are also around that age during the anime) needs to attend high school. Don’t tell me they’re married and get all cooked up in the house, right? ;)
Tenma: Yagami High School
Tohru: Kaibara High School
 
Classroom
Refers to the classroom number/name that they study in:
Tenma: What is known is Class 2-C
Tohru: What is known is Class 1-D
 
Zodiac sign
Tenma: Sagittarrius
Tohru: Taurus
 
Birthday
Tenma: 30th November
Tohru: Not really known. But guessing from her zodiac sign is Taurus, it should be somewhere in May
 
Height
Tenma: 154cm
Tohru: 156.7cm
 
Weight
Tenma: 43kg
Tohru: 46kg
 
Blood type
Tenma: B type
Tohru: O type
 
Hair colour
Tenma: Black
Tohru: Light brown
 
Hair style
Tenma: Doesn’t really tie her slender long black hair. Instead she has 2 short ponytails which twitches everytime she gets happy or excited.
Tohru: When she doesn’t tie her hair and has 2 really long strands from her sideburns. And her hair will spread out in all directions when she’s surprised or shocked. When she ties her hair, she braids them into 2 pigtails.
 
Eye colour
Tenma: Darkish blue
Tohru: Greenish Blue
 
Body physique
Tenma: For her age, she still has that under developed body of a child (just like her mentality), which makes her unappealing to most boys (of course there’re some weird exceptions)
Tohru: Though nothing really mentioned about it, in my opinion she has the right size for her age and stature, not too busty or curvaceous and not that under developed. Something like in between.
 
Siblings
Tenma: She has a younger sister 1 year her junior, Yakumo.
Tohru: Nil.
 
Parents
Tenma: The whereabouts and existance of her parents are unknown. Though there’s an episode briefly showing her father about Yakumo’s flashback while she was young and why she despised her older sister.
Tohru: She is an orphan as both her parents, Katsuya and Kyoko, died while she was young.
 
Residence
Even though they don’t have parents, they still need a place to live, right?
Tenma: She lives in a double story house along with Yakumo. Seems pretty spacious, meaning from looks of it, it doesn’t look like a typical cramped Japanese house.
Tohru: After her mom’s demise, she stayed in a makeshift tent in the forest alone before living with the Soumas (Shigure’s house and not the main Souma house, that is). Once she had moved back to live with her grandpa but that was for just a short period before moving back to the Soumas.
 
Love interest
Which girl at that age wouldn’t have that secret crush which makes her heartbeat thump real fast when she’s near that person. Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a little.
Tenma: Ouji Karasuma
Tohru: Yuki Souma and Kyo Souma (no she’s not two-timing those 2 guys. Just indecisive)
 
Guys interested in her
Being cute girls themselves, I’m sure there are boys who fall head over heels over them.
Tenma: Harima Kenji
Tohru: Though not obvious, most of the men in the Souma household likes her in a way though some may not show their affectionate side like Yuki and Kyo, and some openly (donno whether it’s that boyfriend-girlfriend kinda love) like Momiji, Ayame and Shigure (sometimes)
 
Best pals
No (wo)man is an island. I’m sure most girls have their own close buddies and circle of friends which they can confide or feel comfortable with. Yeah, also some sort like lending their support in times of need.
Tenma: Eri Sawachika, Mikoto Suoh, Akira Takano
Tohru: Arisa Uotani, Saki Hanajima
 
Competency
Tenma: Can be summed up in 1 word. She’s a klutz. Yeah, no good in cooking, no good in studying, no good in household chores, no good in sports and just about almost anything else.
Tohru: She’s quite good in cooking and doing household chores and does them when she lives at the Soumas as repayment and gratitude for letting her live in their house. Not to say that she’s damn good in her studies, she has her ups and downs too. But at least she’s better than Tenma.
 
Character
Tenma: She’s a cheerful, happy-go-lucky, goofy, slow and dense. Gets easily distracted especially when she is studying. But despite most of her negative characteristics, she’s quite a friendly person. Plus, she is quite protective (and may even do nasty stuffs) of her little sister though she doesn’t object to the fact Yakumo having a boyfriend (misunderstood, of course). But nothing more than that. She likes pro wrestling too.
Tohru: Always being optimistic and smiling because of her mom’s last words. Meaning, she tries to move on in live and not be held back by her past. She’s also quite a kind and caring person and will try to help those in need within her capabilities. Being quite a polite, soft-spoken, well-mannered and gentle natured person, she doesn’t really fight back. She likes to make and eat onigiris. Also, she treasures and holds a picture of her late mom close to her heart.
 
Part time job
School life isn’t just about study study study. To earn money, you have to work too.
Tenma: I wouldn’t say that she really has one. But in a short clip of 1 episode in the second season, we see Tenma working part time at some bakery shop bagging breads. This was during the summer vacation.
Tohru: In order to help pay her tuition fees, she works part time as a cleaner in some building corporation down town. She does this after school and may last till nightfall.
 
Animal person?
Tenma: She isn’t that good with animals too, though she has a black cat named Iori as a pet, but it usually hangs around Yakumo who’s more of an animal lover as compared to her.
Tohru: Though she doesn’t transform into one of the chinese zodiac animals, Tohru is a cat person, meaning she likes cats. The one reason why she is in a way torn between liking Kyo or Yuki.
 
Role and affect
Refers to their role in the series and how it changes the people around them.
Tenma: Because of her incompetent and klutzy nature, she usually fails to win the heart of Karasuma or even send her intended signals/messages to him. Sometimes causing mayhem to those around her.
Tohru: Once she got to know about the Souma’s curse, she soons discovers and learns more about the Soumas themselves and in turn how she changes and opens up the hearts of each of the Souma family members she meets.
 
Erasing of memories
Can’t remember anything? Well, that’s because you have your memories erased. Or risk having one.
Tenma: In the last episode of the second season, she got some sort of amnesia about what happened the previous night’s accident which in a way saved Harima’s identity.
Tohru: Part of the deal of knowing the Souma’s curse is to keep it a secret. If the public ever knows about it, she will have her memories erased. So far so good.
 
Voice actress
The female voice talent which gives the character their tone and accent.
Tenma: Ami Koshimizu who also does the voice of Megumi (Muteki Kanban Musume), Tenko (Kamisama Kazoku), Saya (Lemon Angel Project) and Nina Wang (Mai-Otome) among others.
Tohru: Yui Horie who also does the voice of Eri (School Rumble), Jiyuu (Jubei Chan), Ayu (Ultra Maniac), Yoko (Inukami), Naru (Love Hina), Iron Maiden Jeanne (Shaman King) , Ayu (Kanon), Kotori (Da Capo), Makie (Mahou Sensei Negima) and Tamami (Mahoraba) among others.
 
Conclusion
It seems I’m torn between these 2 ladies. Well, I like Tenma because she’s quite pretty and cute whereas I like Tohru because of her character and personality. Can I choose both? Is there an all-in-one girl where she’s both pretty and capable? Maybe in anime world. Though most people would still go for Tohru, not to say that she’s not that pretty nor is Tenma that useless, I still can’t make up my mind on which one is better. But that depends on which criteria you’re looking at too. By the way, the best bishoujo is still Mai Tokiha!!!!! My heart’s still with her! HAHAHAHAHAHA! 

Kamisama Kazoku

March 10, 2007

Imagine if God had a son. And His son is poised to take over His post when the time comes. Wait a minute. Staunch Christian believers would straightaway rebuke this as there can only be 1 God. The one and only Lord and Father in Heaven. Well, unless you’re in anime land, something like this is possible. And Kamisama Kazoku is one of them. Don’t get your religious beliefs mixed up here. It’s all just for entertainment purposes.
 
Don’t get too upset when you see that God is portrayed as some laid back bearded guy who dons a singlet and pretty looked much like a farmer. Yeah, and He has a name too. He is Osamu Kamiyama. This guy is supposed to be the One Almighty ruler? Like it or not, he is. Don’t get really upset too if you see Him as a joker at times.
 
However, in this 13 episode anime of comedy, drama and romance, this isn’t about Osamu himself. It’s more on his son, Samatarou Kamiyama. In a nutshell, as a son of God who’s gonna take over His job one day, Samatarou is sent to live in the human world as to better understand those funny creatures called humans and their funny customs and habits. What better way to learn things hands on. They even have a house in the human world and lived there along with their family.
 
And probably the whole family is somewhat dysfunctional and reminds you of The Simpsons. Well, not actually an exact replicate of them, but you’ll feel that they’re all just ‘one kind’. Like the hyped up overprotective and wants-to-spoil-and-give-my-son-all-my-love-in-the-world mom and goddess, Venus (doesn’t like it when people calls her aunty or old. You can’t be young forever can’t you? Oh wait, she can. Hehe), your typical cunning and sly teenage girl sister, Misa (she likes to wear those sexy singlet and shorts. Maybe she thinks she has a nice body), and your typical ‘no expression’ little sister, Meme (is that supposed to be cute or what). Both Misa and Meme are candidates to become a goddess just like their mom.
 
But the Kamiyama family has another member in their family. She is Tenko. Born at the same time as Samatarou, she is an angel and is supposed to be Samatarou’s guardian, looking after him while he is on Earth. And because they’ve been together for so long, they’re like your typical childhood friends. From first looks you’ll feel that they both (especially Tenko) have feelings for each other but don’t really admit it maybe because it’s the childhood friend thingy. After watching so many of these kind of animes, of course, I say they do! Plus, Tenko does the house chores like cooking and cleaning. I mean Venus is a goddess, right? She can’t be doing this kind of stuffs, right?
 
As seen in episode 1, Samatarou needs to attend high school for you know what purpose lah. And since Tenko’s in the same class with him and even has her table next to his. In addition, since they’re both ‘arguing’ most of the time, most of their classmates will think that they’re having a lover’s quarrel. Which is true in a way, don’t you think? Tenko’s always pestering Samatarou to do things for the good of himself and others but Samatarou being your typical teenager who doesn’t listen, shrugs off her advice and things like that, much to Tenko’s annoyance.
 
The thing which I find amusing is that, Samatarou and his other Godly family members can have a private chat among themselves. What do I mean? When they do this, a chibi version of them will appear next to their shoulder and they can talk using that chibi version all they want without the outside world knowing. I’ll call and refer to this as PCC (private chibi chat). Hehe. But sometimes this may attract on-lookers. Yeah, from the outsiders point of view, you can see the real them moving weirdly, as though they’re talking but without moving their mouths. Must be the body language.
 
Even in this first episode, it seems that their homeroom teacher is a sicko himself. Yeah, this guy loves bloomers and doesn’t want them to be abolished from school so much so that he stripped off his pants and shows the class the bloomers he’s wearing. Actually, it’s Osamu’s doing. Yeah, he can influence and make people do crazy stuffs. But I’m not really sure why he does that. I mean, being a son of God, I’m sure your family members wants to turn things out the way you like it. Like how everytime the light turns green each time Samatarou reaches a junction or street to cross. Yeah, like a spoilt brat. If life is only that smooth sailing for us all. But Samatarou isn’t too fond of it all.
 
Why, even back at home, Samatarou and Tenko are surprised to find that all of their family members are dressed in bloomers, even Osamu! Now that’s plain disgustingly weird. But funny lah. Is this their way of cheering Samatarou up? And since Samatarou’s going through that teenager period, he spends the rest of the day sulking alone in his bedroom and doesn’t come downstairs to have dinner with his family, the they all tried to persuade him but to no avail. But later that night as his parents stole his blanket (some parents), Samatarou eventually heads downstairs to find Tenko sleeping next to the refrigerator (as she’s waiting for him to come down). Yup, some food she left for him on the table. I guess he felt a little bad about it and had some of the leftovers. After he heads back upstairs, Tenko awakened a little to find herself wrapped in Samatarou’s blanket, which made her a little happy.
 
The next day in school, Tenko seems quite energetic, probably of what happened last night. Then Samatarou’s classmate and friend, Shinichi Kirishima, excitedly tells them that there’ll be a new female exchange student coming. Hmm.. That Shinichi guy seems like a pervert/playboy but more like a loser (okay, maybe not that bad). Tenko thinking that Samatarou has several goddesses around him, would not be interested in a mere female human. Wrong girl. When that girl, Kumiko Komori first arrives in class, seems that Samatarou can’t take his eyes off her and says how beautiful she is! That boy’s in looooove! Oh oh. Tenko’s looking worried there.
 
So in episode 2, we see some steam coming off Tenko’s head. Yeah, another funny thing about this girl is that whenever she’s embarrassed or experiencing some other drastic emotions, she’ll let off some steam above her head. And everybody’s wondering what’s that but not enough to curiously ‘investigate’. And since Samatarou’s in love, Tenko suggests that Samatarou tries to go out with her. Since she’s just his guardian angel, Tenko thought that she has to put aside her feelings all for Samatarou’s happiness. Sort of.
 
What’s left for Samatarou to do is to confront Kumiko and ask her out. For the first time, things didn’t go his way. Yup, Kumiko rejected him and saying that even though she’ll be here for a short while (yeah, she’s leaving again soon and the reason why her school uniform’s different from the rest throughout the show), she just got here and is in the midst of settling down and this seems too sudden. Samatarou must be thinking why didn’t God’s miracle work like before. But then he thought that he should use his own powers to win Kumiko’s love. What’s this?! Back at home, Samatarou’s family seems to be wearing that naked apron to please Samatarou. You guessed it, even Osamu. Maybe it’s because his dad looked really disgusting that Samactarou punched him away.
 
The next day, Samatarou gets a surprise from Kumiko as she said she wants to meet him behind the gym. Tenko who heard about this decides to follow Samatarou there wihout being noticed. Then another surprise for Samatarou as Kumiko confessed that she loves him and takes off her top shirt and hugs him! Wow! What a change in character. Samatarou must be thinking that it’s his own doing. But wait. Suddenly it crossed Samatarou’s mind that it may be his dad’s. As he calls him out in their PCC, we find out that it really is Osamu’s doing. Bummer. And since Samatarou insists that he wants to use his own strengths, Osamu turned Kumiko back to normal.
 
You know what that means. She realized that she’s half naked with Samatarou and slaps him before running away in embarrasement. Do you wish she was all lovey-dovey now? Of course Samatarou’s feeling the pangs of his first love. Yeah, love hurts boy. As Tenko tries to comfort him, Misa barges into his room and gives them both a ticket to a water amusement park. I think this is all part of her scheme for something.
 
So on that day itself, it’s like a double date. They managed to get Kumiko and Shinichi to come along. Because it’s part of the plan to make Samatarou and Kumiko together, Tenko has to pretend to be dating Shinichi. So some chat here and there before the gang heads into the pool. There suddenly, all the other girls seem to call out Samatarou and are starting to fall in love with him as they gather around him. Samatarou and the rest are wondering what’s going on until Samatarou spots his sisters manipulating with the girls’ minds. When Misa and Meme knew they’d been found out, they stop whatever they’re doing. Hmm… Kumiko doesn’t look too fond of it all.
 
Here’s another funny part. As Tenko suggests them to go down the waterslide together, the tube seems to go on and on forever. When will it end? Yeah, looks like Misa and Meme are working their magic again. But once, they’re finally out of the tube, Kumiko noticed her top part is missing and Samatarou’s holding it in his hands! SLAP!!! Oh oh. Just when Kumiko was getting over with that earlier misunderstood perverted situation, here comes another one. This isn’t going down well at all. And on their way home, Kumiko doesn’t seem to make any eye contact with Samatarou and avoids talking to him. Tenko tries to comfort him by holding Samatarou’s hand but the latter refused. Only after when he reminisces about the time he and Tenko were walking hand in hand during their younger days, did Samatarou smiled and held Tenko’s. And Kumiko seems to be watching and noticing it all… Could it be?
 
With Samatarou still not getting over what happened at the amusement park, he and Tenko sort of went out shopping together to get Kumiko a present in episode 3. While window shopping, Tenko saw a musical box she liked and wanted it, but the shop was closed. So they had to go elsewhere. While browsing in another gift shop, Tenko spots a keychain with the words "LOVE" on it and pesters Samatarou to buy it for her, which he reluctantly did. By the end of the day, Samatarou forgot to buy anything for Kumiko.
 
The next day, Samatarou’s afraid to meet Kumiko at school but gets a pleasant surprise when he saw Kumiko waiting at the school gates for him. She apologized for her rude behaviour at the pool and asked if they could be friends. Samatarou and Kumiko even had lunch made by the latter at the school rooftop, with a jealous Tenko watching of course. So is this Samatarou’s dad’s doing? A little check up doesn’t indicate so. I guess it must be for real, huh.
 
Even when the teacher decided to pair up Samatarou and Kumiko together in a three legged race, Samatarou noticed that Kumiko’s obviously going through some extreme mood swings. One minute she’s all lovey-dovey the next she’s a crybaby. Then during a PCC we find out that Meme has created some wheel-of-fortune kind of roulette board which determines the mood swing of Kumiko. Samatarou asked her to stop because of that I-want-to-do-it-on-my-own reason, which Meme did.
 
But during the race, Venus picks it up and plays a little with it before continuing off with her cleaning. And because of that, Kumiko’s volatile emotions caused them both to tumble down into some woods area. Samatarou tries to protect Kumiko but his back crashed into a tree. Kumiko, who’s now back to normal, then realized that Samatarou has been protecting her. Back at Samatarou’s home, we see Meme trying to spin that board which seems to always land at the ‘love’ setting. She thinks it’s spoiled. But of course we know that Kumiko has started to take a liking for Samatarou.
 
The next day, Samatarou has been motivated to get Kumiko a present, buys that same keychain with the words "LOVE" inscribed on it, much to Tenko’s annoyance and anger. He must have lost a little of his memory from yesterday’s incident. And because of that Tenko gets upset and calls him an idiot as she cries, much to Samatarou’s surprise. And later that night, he confronts his whole family and told them how he wants to become a human to do things with his own strength. Shocking! Why would the son of God relinquish his powers to become a mere mortal? Love? Yeah, maybe. Love can make one do crazy things.
 
In fact, Samatarou did turn into a human in episode 4. Before that, Tenko’s wondering what will happen to her when Samatarou’s a human. His reply… she’s free to go wherever she wants. Some answer. Looks like he doesn’t know the magnitude of things to come. Tenko ran away crying. Poor girl. So the morning Samatarou wakes up as a human, he felt great at first. That is, until all the little problems starts creeping in, like how nobody’s there to make him breakfast or wake him up to go to school. Yikes! He’s already late for school. In addition, his other family members and Tenko are nowhere to be found.
 
Even at school, Tenko’s not there. To make matters worse, nobody seems to remember who Tenko is. And when Samatarou had the courage to speak privately with Kumiko, it wasn’t a confession, but rather asking her if Kumiko knew who Tenko was. Kumiko didn’t know what he’s talking about. Samatarou’s feeling pretty strange right now. Kumiko then proceeds to tell him that this is her last day at school and she’ll be leaving by train tomorrow. That’s fast. Two girls in his life are going away. One already gone and the other soon.
 
Later, Samatarou visits the shop where Tenko wanted that musical box so badly, which is open now. There he chats with the storekeeper (which curiously resembles like Tenko except she spots a different hair colour and her hair is covering her eyes most of the time), about love problems and his story like how there’s this girl he’s always been around with is no longer around. Bla bla bla. Then the storekeeper also tells him her story, something which is quite similar like how she regrets not conveying her feelings to her loved one and such.
 
The storekeeper decides to give Samatarou the musical box and when he plays it, it reminded Samatarou of his times with Tenko. She then told him to catch the train before it leaves but Samatarou said there isn’t enough time. With some words of encouragement like where there’s a will, there’s a way, Samatarou gets motivated to do so. Yeah, they’re gonna take her motorbike. Hey, does Samatarou have a licence anyway? Looks like he’s riding it. Kids, do not attempt what this kids is doing. Riding so recklessly. Samatarou also noticed that "LOVE" keychain the storekeeper has, which is similar to Tenko’s.
 
The train had already left when they arrived at the station. So they had to chase it using their bike. How? Samatarou says that they should fly to chase the train. The storekeeper’s in disbelief at first. But when he said that she’s an angel, suddenly a halo and angelic wings sprout out from the storekeeper and the bike begin to fly. What crap is this?! They managed to catch up to the train and Kumiko managed to caught a glimpse of them before the train disappears into the tunnel. Once it’s over, Samatarou tells the storekeeper (now back to normal) that it was a miracle. When she asked who is he, Samatarou replied that he is God. Hahaha. Yeah, that’s what the 2 did, they both laughed anyway. Whether she believes it or not is a different story.
 
When Samatarou has returned to his home, he is happy to find that all his family members and Tenko are there and back to normal. In Tenko’s room, Samatarou decides to give Tenko the musical box she wanted so much. But that’s just the first part. Samatarou then asked Tenko to close her eyes for the second part of the present. When she does, we see a sillhouette of them with Samatarou leaning forward giving Tenko a kiss on her cheek! Shock! Tenko’s blushing as she didn’t really expected this. So was I. I mean, I thought that since Kumiko’s gone, probably he realized his feelings for Tenko.
 
Is everything back to normal in episode 5? Well maybe. Besides Tenko thinking why Samatarou kissed her, Shinichi decides to tell Samatarou about the new cute girl in the next class. Samatarou didn’t want to hear it all, but Shinichi forces him to listen. He even dragged Samatarou to climb up some tree to spy on some girls changing and show him about the girl he was talking about earlier on. That pervert. Tenko, who’s wondering where Samatarou is, gets into PCC, much to Samatarou’s surprise as he tries to shield Tenko from seeing that ‘unholy’ act of theirs.
 
Unfortunately, the branch broke and the 2 guys fell down. Once Tenko realized what Samatarou has been doing, she gives him a kick in the face, in which Samatarou caused Shinichi’s legs to be broken as they were on top of each other when they fell. Looks like Shinichi has to be sent to the hospital. Back home, Venus, along with Misa and Meme are now dressed in nurse outfits and Venus is pretty concern if Samatarou had hurt himself and hugs him until he blacks out. Then Misa had some chat with Tenko which caused the latter to blush a little. Something about if ‘something’ happened between Samatarou and Tenko. So you could see lots of steam coming out from Tenko’s head as she ‘analysed deeply’ her feelings for Samatarou. So much so she became a little sick the next day and locks herself in her room.
 
Samatarou and Misa went to visit Shinichi at the hospital. Probably Shinichi likes it when Misa teases him a little. That flirt. But anyway soon leaves the boys alone together. And as expected, Shinichi blabs to Samatarou about the new girl that he has fallen in love with. Shinichi points outside the window to a girl in a wheelchair under a tree. He says he doesn’t know her name because there’s no tag on her room. Samatarou thinks he has seen that girl somewhere before. If you ask me, she does look like Kumiko. Soon Samatarou heads home to find Tenko still in her room. What’s this? Tenko thinking that the kiss may have made her pregnant and that she and Samatarou are gonna have a baby. Holy… I thought this was an outdated old fashion belief. Looks like it could happen to naive angels too.
 
In episode 6, well, there is some sort of a baby that arrived at their doorstep in a basket and Tenko thinks that it’s theirs. You know, that stork theory. Of course Samatarou doesn’t believe it all first. Maybe he doesn’t want to take on a responsibility as a father so soon. In the basket, there’s a note saying "I wish we could meet again" and a photo of a girl holding a doll. Meanwhile, Meme visits her dad up in Heaven. Looks like a normal office to me. Hmm… Maybe that’s how wishes come true. We see lots of wishes and hopes written on paper and the one Osamu fishes one out he would make it come true. Interesting.
 
Back down on Earth, Samatarou and Tenko decides to keep this baby thing a secret from the rest, especially Venus. But it seems that the baby, Ai, is growing up faster. One minute she’s a toddler the next she’s already an elementary kid, able to walk and talk. It was quite funny to see how Ai bumped into Misa and Meme who then acts as though they didn’t see anything surprising and ignores it all. But the funniest one was when Venus stumbled upon Ai. Yeah, while Misa tried to get some explanation from Tenko and Samatarou, Venus was shocked to see a baby in her house. To make it worse, Ai called her ‘aunty’. Oh, Venus’s freaking out. Looks like the secret’s out too.
 
Another funny bit is where Shinichi decides to make his move on that wheelchair girl. But everytime he appears, she would press the nurse button making Shinichi panic and hopping away as quickly as possible. After several times, Shinichi managed to grab the nurse button and asked her why she’s always looking out her window. She says in her dream there’s this demon, a lady dressed in red, asking her to come to her, but she can’t because she’s waiting for someone. I wonder what is it. I guess this will be something in the later episodes. By the way, doesn’t that demon looked a bit like Kumiko too? Could it be? Nah… Before you know it, the wheelchair girl hits Shinichi with her wheelchair and calls out to the nurses. Looks like he has to come back and try another day.
 
Continuing where we left of, in episode 7, Venus is really gonna blow her top when Tenko suggests that Ai calls her ‘sister’. When doing so, Venus’s mood changed and she becomes very happy and flattered. Perasan betul. Now she accepts Ai into the family. Meanwhile, Samatarou decides to visit Shinichi alone. There, before anything could happen, Shinichi wants Samatarou to go talk to the wheelchair girl so that it will give Shinichi some credit and such. So as Samatarou went to chat with her, that dream thing again. Looks like the 2 are quite friendly with each other. Before she could ask Samatarou’s name, Shinichi hits him with his crutch and calls him a traitor.
 
At the same time, Tenko and Ai arrived at the hospital looking for Samatarou. Shinichi who saw them, views this as an opportunity to get back at Samatarou. Yeah, he’s adding fuel to the fire by telling how Samatarou’s ‘flirting’ with another girl. A furious Tenko stomps over there. Seeing them so friendly, she shouts and calls him an idiot before rushing off with Samatarou no choice but to go after her. Shinichi then tries to take advantage of the situation but the wheelchair girl still said some good things about Samatarou before leaving. Looks like Shinichi will always be a loser.
 
Samatarou managed to catch up with Tenko and a lover’s quarrel ensues. You know, that thing about family and responsibility. Then they realized that Ai isn’t with them and starts to look for her frantically. They finally found her standing on an overhead bridge near the hospital. Looks like she’s grown into a high school girl. Imagine having a daughter who’s old enough to be your classmate! Weird.
 
The next day when Samatarou and Tenko left for school, they should’ve known better than to leave Ai in Misa’s care. Yeah, another scheming look from Misa’s face. While Ai stumbled upon that note and photo in Samatarou’s room, Misa came in and suggests that Ai should bring Samatarou and Tenko their bentos while dressed in a school swimsuit. Would you believe it, Ai totally followed what she said. That’s because if Ai does this, she’ll be rewarded. Imagine the shock and surprise faces of everyone in school when Ai starts calling out papa and mama as she enters the school gate. Oh, the horror for Samatarou and Tenko. So later as they heard things from Ai at the shoe locker area, Samatarou has no choice but to peck Ai on her cheeks as to show his appreciation. Later, Samatarou has revenge on his mind as he confronts Misa. But Misa distracted him by showing him the photo from the basket. Yeah, Samatarou realized that Ai looked like the girl in the photo.
 
So episode 8 starts off with some analyzing about who Ai is. Like how Misa says the reason why Ai grows is probably she remembers something. Then those markings on Ai’s back becomes clearer but Samatarou still can’t make the words out. Then he made some probable connections between the dreams of Ai’s and the wheelchair girl’s. Then he told Ai that Ai isn’t actually Ai and that she’s a different person after seeing the name "Ai" at the bottom of the photo. He continues that she’s here looking for Ai, which is her friend. And tomorrow Samatarou’s gonna take her to see that person. I’m confused but I think I know who it is.
 
The next day, Samatarou and Tenko brought Ai to see the wheelchair girl. Now Ai has grown and really looked like the wheelchair girl. The wheelchair girl identifies Ai as Lulu and the wheelchair girl herself is Ai Tachibana. Yup, so from now on, please make note of the adjustments. Ai seems afraid to meet Lulu. Even though Lulu says how much she loved her, Ai kept rejecting her causing Lulu to cry and run away. Tenko slaps Ai before running off to catch Lulu. So we hear Ai telling Samatarou her story. How Lulu was her only best friend but one day Lulu fell of the overhead bridge, which is the one near the hospital. Though Ai woke up in hospital not knowing what had happened after that, it seems everyone avoids answering her when Ai asked about Lulu.
 
Thus, by staring at it, she hopes that she’ll meet Lulu again. But she didn’t come to expect to meet Lulu like this. See, be careful of what you wish for. After some words from Samatarou (he even told her that he was the son of God and stuff), he told her that Lulu’s waiting for her at that overhead bridge, in which Ai went. As Samatarou’s waiting in the room, Ai’s mom showed up and Samatarou introduced himself as Ai’s friend. Ai’s mom must be either happy or surprise because she told him Ai never had any friends before and that her only friend was her doll. You know what I’m thinking. Yup, to cut things short, Lulu is actually the doll in that photo.
 
Soon, Samatarou rushes out to that overhead bridge. Ai finally reached the bottom of the overhead bridge and hobbles her way up. Some talk here and there like that dream thing and wanting to meet each other. Once Ai reached the top, she saw those words on Lulu’s back ‘Most Important Friend’ which is quite clear now. Ai now believes that this is truly Lulu, her doll. But because of a strong gust of wind, Lulu was blown off the bridge (she must be really light) but Ai jumps down to grab her as they both embraced in mid-air.
 
Fortunately, Samatarou and Shinichi have placed several mats to cushion their fall. As Samatarou and Tenko walked home together, Tenko felt lonely now that Lulu was no longer with them as she felt that Lulu was part of the family. But Samatarou told her that she’s still part of the Kamiyama family. As Samatarou leans to kiss her (again), Tenko suddenly gets embarrassed and lets loose some steam over her head, causing Samatarou to laugh. As an embarrassed Tenko gets up to leave, Samatarou pulls her hand and she accidentally fall back and they both locked lips! Wow! How does your real first time taste and feel like? Anyway, they both got embarrassed by it Samatarou said that it was just an accident. Yeah. I hope Tenko doesn’t think that she’ll have another child after this.
 
Later when Samatarou visits his dad up in Heaven, he accused him for all that has happened. But Osamu said that he only arranged the beginning and everything else was left by chance. And then he shows Samatarou how he just granted that note found in the basket by fishing it out. Then Osamu says he’ll have to punish Samatarou for telling a human that he is God. And it’ll be the worse and most cruel form of punishment ever. That is, he sends Samatarou back in time whereby he fell off the branch with Shinichi. But this time, Shinichi didn’t break his legs and was only sent to the school’s infirmary.
 
In addition, Shinichi gets a visit from a girl because that girl got a love letter from Shinichi. To Samatarou’s surprise, that girl is actually Ai! And she’s got her Lulu doll hanging on her bag. Well, a loser sometimes wins. And from now on Shinichi and Ai are an item. Then Samatarou asked Tenko if she remembred that lips kissing incident but it seems that Tenko had only remembered that peck on the cheek. Then Samatarou realized that this is the cruel punishment that he has received from his dad, everyone’s memories except his are erased.
 
Looks like that lady in red dream still persists as we still see it in the beginning of episode 9. A reminder of things to come? Anyway, Samatarou finds his mom along with Misa and Meme in their usual cosplaying outfit to cheer him, this time, in a cheerleader’s outfit with the initials ‘L’, ‘V’ and ‘E’. If it spells ‘love’, so who’s wearing the ‘O’? It’s Osamu, of course. Besides Samatarou reminiscing about the past with Lulu and that kiss with Tenko, we see Shinichi and Ai really happy together, holding hands. Looks like Samatarou and Tenko are jealous if you look at it in a way. And when the 2 speak out against them holding hands, Shinichi mentions back to them about the same thing. Right back at ya’. Of course the 2 blushingly said that they’re doing it because they’re family and not lovers. Yeah, right.
 
Also Tenko receives a love letter from a guy named Takashi Nakamura in her shoe box. So some uncertainty from Tenko as she’s still not really sure of Samatarou’s feelings towards her and if he still needs her nor not. Thus, she decides not to open the letter just yet. Yeah, Samatarou teased her in front of Shinichi and Ai that she should get a boyfriend. Back in Tenko’s room, she’s hearing a mysterious voice calling out to her and saying that her job’s done and that she should return to Heaven. Who could it be, since it’s not Osamu or anybody she knows. So as the 2 ‘debate’, their conversation only increases Tenko’s uncertainty of her feelings towards Samatarou.
 
So the next day in school, Tenko decides to give back the letter to Takashi. Sorry boy, for a side minor character, it’s right to be ‘dumped’. Just kidding. Of course, back in class Samatarou asked how things went. After she spilled the beans and the usual quarrelling, suddenly someone familiar returns and calls out Samatarou. Who could it be? Why, it’s Kumiko! She’s back! I wouldn’t have least expected it. Oh oh. Those feelings of pain, love and jealousy are back again. Round 2. Later, Kumiko and Samatarou had a private chat on the rooftop. Kumiko tells Samatarou that she came back just to see him. Uh-huh. Looks like she likes him and even asked him to go out with her. Meanwhile, we see Misa eavesdropping nearby and is confused what’s happening and Tenko alone in the classroom is still wondering about Samatarou’s feelings. You know, if you’re so worried, maybe you should go ask him straight in the face.
 
And looks like in episode 10 Samatarou and Kumiko are dating. Yup, instead of Samatarou and Tenko walking home together, the former decides to walk back with Kumiko. Of course it’s so obvious that Tenko’s just putting up a happy face and saying that she’s all happy for him. But deep down in her heart. it isn’t. Why, she rushed home crying and into the arms of Venus. When Tenko tells Venus that Samatarou’s dating, Venus goes into a rage. Yeah, that overprotective mom now is mad because her precious little son has found somebody else he loves rather than his mom.
 
Meanwhile, Samatarou and Kumiko arrived at the latter’s small run-downed apartment. A place where Kumiko lives with her sickly mom. Some chat here and there as Samatarou after seeing Kumiko’s position promised that he’ll help her in any way he can. Once Samatarou reached home, he is confronted by a furious Venus but managed to dodge all her attacks and escaped to his room. To his surprise (and mine) he saw Misa in her sexy lingerine! She’s asking him about what he’s gonna do about Tenko since now he’s got Kumiko. That usual Tenko is my childhood friend answer.
 
While Tenko’s crying on her bed, that mysterious voice again pops up and told her the same thing, that is to return to Heaven. Tenko agreed but told the voice to allow her to stay on for 3 days. The voice also agreed but also told her that she can’t back out of the contract they’ve made. Then, suddenly a piggy bank with wings appeared. To cut things short, that winged piggy back is Suguru, that mysterious voice and is supposedly some archangel. He also wants Tenko to keep his presence a secret. Funny thing about this Suguru is that whenever you put coins into it, he will automatically say the amount inserted and the total amount of money he has, which causes those who insert their coins to laugh and be amused. Hehehe. Funny pig.
 
The next morning, Tenko still has her worries and doubts and also asking about her real family in Heaven but Suguru told her not to think so much. Then a funny part was when Meme spotted Suguru, she just deposited some coins into it rather than being amused of a flying piggy bank. So did Venus and Misa. Looks like it’s a conditional response. Everytime someone sees a piggy bank, they have to put in some money. Maybe I should try that method too. And it looks like Samatarou may be the only to realize something’s wrong with that piggy bank. Nope, he deposited some money too. So close yet so far. Anyway, since Samatarou told Tenko that he’s going out on a morning date with Kumiko, he doesn’t need any breakfast. As expected, Tenko pretends to be happy for him. But you know lah. This prompted her to go and spy on Samatarou on his date and dragging Suguru along too. Jealousy rearing its ugly head.
 
Episode 11 begins with Samatarou and Kumiko dating with a jealous Tenko watching their every move. Later when they arrived at school, they’re surprised to find that nobody’s in class. A teacher then told them that everyone will be a little late because the weren’t feeling well. Soon as the students arrive to class, Shinichi tells them about that lady in red dream. Looks like everyone else had that same dream. And after school, Samatarou and Tenko noticed 2 of their classmates didn’t turn up. Did something happened to them?
 
Anyway, since that Samatarou-Kumiko dating is really getting to Tenko, she’s thinking of paying a visit to Kumiko’s house alone. Once at the door, to her surprise and shock some pyschotic scary young lady kicks open the door and threatens to kill her. But she managed to calm down when Tenko introduced herself as Kumiko’s classmate. That lady introduced herself as Fumiko and to Tenko’s surprise Fumiko knows her name although she didn’t say it. Then Fumiko wanted to invite Tenko in but Tenko refused. This caused her to get mad and starts to chase Tenko with her kitchen knife. Poor Tenko, fleeing away from that psycho woman. Fortunately Tenko managed to reach home safely.
 
Later at night, Tenko urges Samatarou to break up with Kumiko because of her dangerous sister. But Samatarou refutes and says that Kumiko doesn’t have any sister and that she might be jealous. Tenko then apologizes and went back to her room crying. Samatarou must be wondering what’s going on. Then while everybody’s sleeping, Tenko heard some strange noise and went outside to check out. With the moon blood red, Tenko saw Kumiko holding a scythe and asked her what she’s doing at this hour. Kumiko replied that she’s doing her job and she knows Tenko’s an angel. Suguru sensed danger and asked Tenko to run. What’s this?! Kumiko’s a devil?! Can’t be wrong with those devil wings and tail she sprout out. Kumiko explained how she wanted Samatarou’s enormous power and that her moving away was all just a pretend as she had remained in the city during her ‘absence’ and entered people’s dreams and capturing those who’re weak. Since Kumiko’s at her limit as she disappears and the moon turned back to normal.
 
But is that all just a dream? As Tenko wakes up to find herself in bed. Plus, Suguru seems not to remember last night’s events. While Tenko and Samatarou are walking to school, Tenko again pleads to Samatarou to break up with Kumiko because she has a feeling that Kumiko’s the devil. Though Samatarou agreed, he brought Tenko to Kumiko’s place. There, Fumiko isn’t around except Fumiko and her sickly mother sleeping. When Tenko asked Kumiko about her sister, Kumiko told her that she doesn’t have a sister.
 
Then at the school gates, as Kumiko and Tenko are alone together, Kumiko asked about last night’s moon. Tenko then thought that last night maybe wasn’t a dream. Tenko also asked if Kumiko’s a devil. Soon her fears are confirmed when Kumiko’s eyes turned red and said "Didn’t we met last night?". Oh boy.
 
In episode 12, we find out that the 2 classmates who didn’t turn up actually tried to commit suicide. And when Shinichi relates that lady in red dress thingy, this made Samatarou think that Tenko might be telling the truth. He realized that Tenko’s the one most important to him and not Kumiko as he searches for her. But looks like Tenko’s okay. In class, Kumiko tells Samatarou to meet her at the infirmary because she has something important to tell him. He agrees.
 
There, before Kumiko can say a word, Samtarou starts off first by going down on his knees and asking Kumiko to break up with him. Kumiko laughed before agreeing. Then it’s Kumiko’s turn as she wants Samatarou to help her. Yup, Kumiko exposed her identity. She wants the son of God to help the daughter of the devil. Samatarou realized now that Kumiko’s a devil herself. And he’s been dating the devil all this while without realizing it. It seems that her mom, Fumiko, needed to consume human life to stay healthy and young or else she’ll age rapidly and become that sickly old hag. Thus, Kumiko had to help her mom by entering people’s dream and feed the weak souls to her. As time goes by, Kumiko got fed-up of it all and wants to end it all. And her mom suggested to bring her the ultimate and strongest one, which is Samatarou’s. So by consuming from such a powerful source, she doesn’t have to consume human ones anymore.
 
Therefore, their date was all just a setup. The thing is, Kumiko really did fell in love with Samatarou. Hey, even the devil have feelings. Kumiko also explained her encounter with Tenko and that Tenko is going back to Heaven, something which Samatarou isn’t aware of until now. Just then, the infirmary windows exploded and we see Fumiko flying in with a scythe in hand. Looks like she’s going in for the kill. Being a true devil herself, she mocks Kumiko for being weak and tells her that the aging thing was all a lie so as to get Kumiko to do her bidding.
 
Samatarou and Kumiko tried to dodge Fumiko’s attacks when Tenko came in. Fumiko’s gonna slice them in half when she heard Suguru’s voice. Some short chat there before Fumiko decides to back off for now but before that decides to give them a present by slashing Tenko’s arm, injuring her. So Samatarou carried Tenko in his arms and rushed back home to treat her injuries. Some emotional talk here and there as though as Tenko’s dying. Just when Samatarou thought that Tenko’s dead, Venus came in and knocked some sense in him, saying that angels don’t really die. Come to think of it, yeah she’s right. Samatarou leaves his room and went to talk with his sisters and Kumiko as Venus tries to heal Tenko.
 
By the way, I noticed since that sending back Samatarou in time incident, we haven’t seen Osamu lately. I wonder what he’s doing lately, locking himself up in Heaven. It seems nobody could contact him in any way at all. Venus then comes downstairs. Kumiko seems to feel guilty about the whole thing and tries to walk away but was told by Venus to sit down. Also, I find it funny that Venus can’t seem to remember Kumiko’s name, always calling her Choromi and things like that. Venus told Kumiko that even though she doesn’t like girls who get close to Samatarou, they still have to help her when she’s in trouble because this is the house of God. And God will come to help those in need. With that, Kumiko weeps and hugs Venus. A sign of thanks, I guess. Yeah, I suppose it doesn’t really matter if you’re the devil’s daughter or what. No discrimination policy here.
 
Samatarou visits Tenko in her room later that night and the 2 had another of those chat like going back to Heaven thingy and how Samatarou’s being nice because he doesn’t need her anymore. Samatarou closed Tenko’s eyes and asked her to get some sleep. Before Tenko fell asleep, she said that if Samatarou doesn’t like her, at least she wants him to say that he still needs her. Soon, Samatarou walks over to her side and kissed her on her cheeks. Wah, that’s the 3rd time already.
 
So in the final episode 13, Samatarou vows to protect Kumiko as the latter stays at the Kamiyama’s for the night. However, it seems that the party’s just getting started when Fumiko launches her attack that night. Samatarou rushed downstairs only to find Fumiko standing over his mom’s motionless body. In Samatarou’s rage, his eyes suddenly turned red and was going to retaliate when Venus appears in PCC mode and tells him to calm that and that violence isn’t the way. It seems that even God can turn into the devil if he becomes engulfed in violence. Yeah, then it wouldn’t be any different from the devil.
 
The same thing happened to Meme when she arrived downstairs and saw her mom’s condition. But Meme was smacked against the wall unconscious by Fumiko. Misa then barges in and tells Samatarou to take Meme upstairs while she herself tries to take on Fumiko but was shortly taken out. By that time, Samatarou and Kumiko found out that Fumiko is in Tenko’s room and is going to slash her with her scythe as revenge for Kumiko’s betrayal and wants her to come back. Kumiko had no choice but to do so in order to save Tenko, despite Samatarou’s protest. Fumiko’s gonna slash Tenko anyway when she’s stopped by Kumiko. Fumiko then takes Kumiko away and tells Samatarou to meet her at the park or else Kumiko will die. Samatarou seems lost in hope when his mom and sisters came in to comfort him.
 
Later, Samatarou and Suguru waits at the park when Fumiko arrived on some large demonic dog. That dog’s roar was so powerful that it blasted Suguru away. Looks like Samatarou has to settle this one all by himself. Fumiko tells Samatarou that he will die here today and Kumiko’s gonna do it for her. Samatarou tries to persuade Kumiko, so some talk here and there about the times they’ve been together bla bla bla. As Kumiko’s seemingly gonna strike Samatarou with her energy sword, Kumiko actually stabs her mom instead! Yeah, she wants her nice gentle mother back and not that demonic one she is now. Fumiko scoffs at her and said that all that was just an act an a lie before knocking her away. Fumiko asked Samatarou to save her mom.
 
As Fumiko assaults a non-resisting Samatarou, Tenko arrives. Some more talk of reassurance and stuffs like that when Tenko finds herself in the mouth of that demonic dog. Samatarou becomes enraged and his eyes turned red again as he picks up the energy sword. Seeing this, Fumiko felt happy that he was going to do something with it. But Samatarou stabbed his own heart with it! He says that he refused to be swallowed up by the demon in his heart and is going to get rid of it. However, this also caused Fumiko’s heart to throb in pain. As he pushes the sword deeper, some bright light shone out from his body and at the same time Fumiko’s goes up in flames and disappears.
 
Samatarou collapsed once it’s over. Tenko and Kumiko came to and rushed to his side. Tenko suggests to pray for a miracle but Kumiko is a hesitant because she believes that she’s still a devil. Then suddenly, angelic wings sprouted from the back of the both of them. Well, if God can crossover to become a devil, I’m sure the opposite is likewise too. As they prayed, Samatarou’s body glowed with bright lights and soon he opened his eyes. To Tenko’s relief, she tried to hug and kiss him but Samatarou tried to resist, with Kumiko watching and laughing at them.
 
A few days later, the Kamiyama family are fixing their house. Venus tells Samatarou that his room will be halved since Kumiko’s moving in with the rest of the family, much to his dismay. Suguru explains to Tenko about Fumiko’s past. It seems that long ago Fumiko was once an angel and fell in love with a human. They got married and had a daughter. But when the man found out that Fumiko’s an angel, he couldn’t accept it and left, leaving Fumiko heartbroken and since then she wanted revenge on mankind and turned into a devil. So theoretically, Kumiko’s an ex-angel too. Suguru asked Tenko if it’s okay not returning to Heaven. Tenko replied that she’s okay because she has a family here. Soon Suguru heads back up to Heaven and met up with Osamu. By the way, another kissing moment between Samatarou and Tenko when the latter snuggled up close to the former in his room. That’s number 4.
 
Back in Heaven, we see Osamu saying how proud he was about Samatarou, how he has matured. And it seems that the way they say things, seems to indicate that Suguru is Tenko’s father. Though, not sure about Tenko’s mom. Then Osamu told Suguru that he’s gonna work with a companion from now on. And Suguru’s new partner is… another flying female pig named Fu-san. Well, from deduction, she’s Fumiko who has no recollection of her past memories. Convenince to tie things up? Looks like Suguru’s taken an instant liking for her. Hey, what about his wife? Nah, not important. Meanwhile as Samatarou and gang gets ready to go to school, seems that Kumiko’s transferred to his school too, wearing their uniform. Everybody has a group photo taken, a picture which we see in Tenko’s diary.
 
Overall, this is quite a nice anime and I like how the way things ended. Yeah, a happy ending that tie many things up rather than those which leaves a bad taste in your mouth or left hanging to the viewer’s imagination. So it shows that good will triumph over evil and that violence isn’t a tool to solve things. Uh-huh, violence begets violence. Also it’s not your typical deity-who-falls-in-love-with-a-mortal story. Well, as we find out the son of God fell in love with the daughter of the devil who’s an ex-angel. Something a little different there.
 
I find the drawing here a little ‘simple’. Meaning, the characters here look a little cartoonish rather than your typical Japanese bishies. Maybe it’s to attract younger audience as well with bright colours. But there are some scenes which are dark and grim especially towards the end, but it won’t amount to any horror thingy. Unless you find anything that involves the devil to be one. Also, there’re some scenes that shows the girls in their lingerie. Though, nothing extreme.
 
I’m quite pleased with the character developments overall especially between Samatarou and Tenko. Though in the end I’m not sure if Samatarou would choose which girl he wants to be with, Tenko or Kumiko. But since he’s God, he can have both of them! Yeah, sharing is good. Just kidding. I’m still wondering why did Osamu locked himself up in Heaven in those last few episodes. Maybe he wanted to see if his son got what it takes to become God. Possible.
 
I like the ending theme song, Toshokan Dewa Oshiete Kurenai Tenshi No Himitsu (what a long name) sung by Miraku. It gives you that feel like one of those rock ‘n’ roll church songs with lots of soul in it and it makes you want to get up and move your feet. I find it weird in the sense that both the opening and ending singles of the series weren’t released until much later after the series had ended. Usually, when an anime series has been shown, at least the opening and ending singles will soon follow. Yeah, there seems to be no soundtrack release at all too.
 
So if you want to watch some short little comedy and drama about God, you don’t have to be a Christian to watch this one. No sensitive religious matters here, just as long as you believe in God, then anything is possible. I wonder if my wish to enjoy watching animes in comfort and happiness for the rest of my life would come true… I believe in it!

Second Flight

March 9, 2007

  Kitto meguriawaseta, Tenshi no hon no kimagure da yo,
  Megurikado de atta mitai ni, Futto hajimatteta
 
Funny thing was, when I was watching the series Onegai Twins, I didn’t quite like the opening theme song, Second Flight, which is sung by KOTOKO and Hiromi Satou. Then well after I’ve finished watching it, suddenly I had that ‘craving’ for this song. Yeah, I became infatuated with that song at that particular time and soon after I’ve got the full length version, I’ve already obtained the karaoke version of it as well.
 
  Dou ni nannai kimoci, Taisetsu sugiru kara moteamasu,
  Sanpomichi de fuita suna kaze, Kokoro ga hayatteku
 
The song starts off with a slow piano solo before that electronic sound beat and then followed by the actual song intro. The tune of the song resembles a lot like dance track, which made it quite a lively and energetic piece. Uh-huh, I got that little urge to get up and move my feet.
 
  Setsuna sa hagurakasu no ni wa nareteru no ni,
  Konna toki dake namida ga tomerarenai no wa, Naze darou?
 
To me, this song is generally simple for me to sing. At least for the verses. At first I sounded like taking short periods (read: like stammering lamely) even if it’s in the same verse line because I was still unsure of the timing. But now I’m okay and it sounds continuous.
 
  Aimai na kisetsu dakara koso,
  Kasuka na tezawari kokoro de kanjite
 
So as usual, there’s a short line in the chorus where you have to go a little high pitch. You know what that means when I reach that part. Sometimes I sound okay but most of the times, I’m out. Furthermore, I notice that I need to raise my voice level in order to get that tune right (hopefully).
 
  Kagirareta toki wo ikiru kara,
  Tatanda tsubasa wo ima sugu hirogete,
 
And true to being a karaoke version, there’s one part in the song which is spoken, which is also included in the karaoke version. Yeah, so you really just need to sing here. And it’s quite funny (or lame, depends how you view it) when I do a lip-synch on it. Does it seem real or fake? Also it’s a good thing the karaoke version retain the backup vocals. So it does make me feel enjoyable when I sing.
 
  Tatoe niji ga koweretemo,
  Sora ga matte iru
 
Though the entire song is a little lengthy, over 5 minutes that is, but nevertheless it doesn’t get tedious nor dull. Even if the lyrics doesn’t repeat itself like most chorus in other song does, but that’s manageable. So care to hear me for another second round of Second Flight? Or maybe you’re having second thoughts about it. Hehehe.
 
  Sore ga chiisana hane demo,
  Kaze wo dakishimete…

Tenjou Tenge

March 3, 2007

I nickname this anime ‘The Flashback Show’. Why? That’s because around half of the episodes revolves around flashbacks. Which anime am I talking about, you ask? Why, it’s no other than Tenjou Tenge, of course. I know that flashbacks are good to further develop the storyline and tell how the current situation came to be, but taking approximately half of the entire series? Well, maybe they’re trying to tell 2 stories into 1 show.
 
The main reason why I decided to watch this series in the first place was because of the action and fight scenes. Though, during the fights they pull off some awesome moves with some equally tongue-twisting-hard-to-remember-exaggerated names, there are some comedy and romance elements as well, albeit not many. As most of it would be focused on the drama of the characters and storyline. What else.
 
Depending on how you view it, this year 2004 main tv series has 24 episodes followed by a 2 OVA sequel a year later. Since the OVA is quite closely related and is a direct continuation from the tv series, you might want to group this half hour series as having 26 episodes in all.
 
Thus, the first few episodes of the series was enough to get me started wanting to watch more, that is, until the flashback part. And I thought it was gonna be at least for 1 episode, then when that episode’s over, I thought too that hey, maybe it’ll continue to the next episode and finish it over there. But it didn’t. It went on for several episodes. And by that time, I was thinking that am I watching the same anime or what. And when it finished, boy was I glad. But that was just the first part. Yup, after taking a short break back to present time, somewhere around 2/3 of the series, the flashback continues. Haih… And I was going "Oh no! Here we go again…". Yeah, it did again.
 
Okay, so let’s go back to the main plot of the series first. In the first episode, we’re introduced to 2 delinquents, Souchirou Nagi and Bob Makihara. While Souchirou looks like your typical delinquent teenager bad boy who looks cool in that black overcoat uniform of his, Bob is an African descendant who uses the Brazilian capoeira fighting style and speaks fluent Japanese. Wow. Some multi-racial attributes there.
 
So the 2 riding on Bob’s motorbike, has this ambition of taking over and ruling schools by using their fists. So far they’ve been successful and this time their target would be Toudou Academy. This school isn’t just an ordinary school. As far as I remember, this school is a special kinda school which is supposed to hone the skills of the students to become some great martial artists or whatsoever. Yeah, all the main club activities are related to martial arts. In addition, the people here posses unique powers and skills.
 
Souchirou and Bob thought they had it easy at first, barging right into Toudou Academy (what a way to make an entrance) and beating up every hapless guys that they meet. Sort of like big bullies, if I must say. Of course, their bashing has caused a commotion and attracted the attention of the Juken Club head, Maya Natsume, and another ordinary club member Masataka Takayanagi.
 
Before I move on, I would like to something first. I happen to notice that all the ladies (the main ones as far as I’m concerned) in this series has big and oversized boobs! No, I’m not a pervert! It’s just that, the way they draw it felt like as though they make it so obvious and on purpose. Call it fanservice or what, there’re some panty shots and semi-nudity here as well, though it won’t go as far as hentai.
 
At first looks, Maya may look like some kindergarten kid because of her small short and chibi stature. But she’s actually not. Due to some whatever technique, she’s able to control her body by shrinking herself into a physique of an 8 year old. Yeah, her actual self is more sexy and voluptuous. Say, doesn’t she look like that mysterious transformed version of Guu of Jungle Wa Itsumo Hale Nochi Guu? While in her chibi form, she likes to sit on Masataka’s shoulders. Part of his training or too short to be noticed? Also I find that Maya has 2 long strands of hair in front of her head which reminds me of a cockroach’s antenna…?! Really. And Maya’s equally busty little sister, Aya Natsume, who’s also part of the Juken Club, has her hair so long that she can actually sweep the floor with it. Yeah, she has a potential to be a shampoo ad girl too. Hahaha.
 
Souchirou and Bob met their match when Bob took on Masataka and Souchirou clashed with Maya. Then, with one super blow, Maya blasted Souchirou out from the classroom walkway down to the Juken Club’s dojo below. Yup, Souchirou crashed down below and survived. I guess if he’s such a tough guy, he should at least be able to survive that fall. The thing is, during the same time when Souchirou crashed there, Aya was taking a shower. Uh-huh, you know what that means. But instead of Aya shouting for help and screaming that there’s a pervert, she fell in love with him! Kissing him and asking him straightaway to marry her! Why? Because she has that believe that she’ll become a wife to that guy if he sees her totally naked body. What kind of a??!! Anyway, ever since then, Aya has been totally fascinated, taken in, swept off her feet, and would do anything to support Souchirou to be her husband. If there’re only girls like that in real life. Umm… Maybe better not. But Souchirou seems oblivious to her efforts and not too fond of it.
 
Because of their defeat to the Juken Club, Souchirou has been thinking that he may be weak. Yeah, a lot of bruised egos too. Earlier on, Souchirou took on Masataka in the school canteen and the latter nearly killed the former with some final super blow after all that cool manoeuvres and not-giving-up attitude and talk from both sides. Yeah, Souchirou’s all bruised and bloodied. At the same time, their first day commotion at school has attracted the attention of The Enforcers. Who’re they? Well, they’re supposed to be like the ‘police’ or rather ‘Gestapo’ of Toudou Academy, keeping the order strictly in school and punishing those who defy them. Yeah, a very feared body in the entire school.
 
So the president of The Enforcers, Mitsuomi Takayanagi (who looks like your typical bad guy leader and Masataka’s estranged older brother), looking through the list of new students, Souchirou and Bob in particular, and he seems to noticed something about Souchirou’s family background. To save time, I’ll just tell you. Souchirou came from a family of demon exorsist. Something like some super inner power thingy. Because of that, Souchirou during his younger days was always taunted and bullied. Thus, his family has always been alienated and discriminated for their mysterious powers. But instead of staying quiet, he beat them up. No wonder this guy’s a delinquent. And later in the series, not that I understand, Souchirou can unleash the inner demon within himself and his outlook totally transformed. Uh-huh he looks different and spotting a dark black hair. And don’t know what, due to something something, that demon will become a dragon. Something which, Souchirou managed to do in the end.
 
Anyway, Mitsuomi decides that Souchirou and Bob are to be punished for their actions. Yup, The Enforcers are gonna take action against them, their style, that is. So to start things off, they send Tsutomu Ryuuzaki, the boxing club psycho who can control fire and a little pervert himself (in a psychotic way, that is). Why, when he fondled The Enforcers’ vice president’s breasts as advance payment when asked to do this job only later to find an anki (some sort of dagger) piercing out from his hand. And he’s laughing in pain. Weird. By the way, The Enforcers’ vice president, Emi Isuzu, an anki user and also like Maya has the ability to control her body size. Uh-huh, but unlike Maya, her real body is actually fat and obese! Yes, worse than the Michelin Man. Because of that, she can keep and hide unlimited amount of ankis, which answers my question of how can she keep throwing unlimited numbers of ankis, she isn’t producing them magically, isn’t she? And as expected too, Emi has this crush on Mitsuomi but doesn’t really express it. Not really sure if she’s scared of him or wants to maintain their current president-vice president relationship.
 
Okay so back to Ryuuzaki. During nightfall while the 2 are resting and pondering over things at their apartment, Bob’s caring and open minded girlfriend, Chiaki Kounoike (also looks too sexy and too busty) went out to do some laundry. It didn’t hit those 2 at first when Ryuuzaki set fire onto Bob’s motorbike and when they realized that it might be The Enforcers’ doing and that Chiaki’s life may be in danger, the 2 rushed down there. Unfortunately, they arrived a little too late. It seems that Ryuuzaki had already assaulted Chiaki and totally wrecked that laundry shop. But even when Souchirou and Bob arrived, they’re no match for Ryuuzaki and they lost. That’s double the pain. Yeah, looks like they’re on a losing streak now. But Chiaki thanked a depressed and demoralized Souchirou and Bob for trying their best to protect her. Aww…
 
And because of that, the next day, Souchirou and Bob decides to join the Juken Club to improve their skills and get revenge on The Enforcers. Well, I guess since the Juken Club is short on members, I guess these 2 will do. Plus, the Juken Club has always been opposing The Enforcers, so a few new faces would be good to make up the numbers. Thus, their training in the club begins. Though it’ll be a long road, Maya is confident that they’ll be stronger in no time. I like that smart remark made by Maya while she’s training Souchirou, whereby a few cooking pans are lined up hanging and Souchirou has to hit the first one and his force must not move the other pans in the middle except the last one at the end. I’m not sure what’s it got to do with clenching your stomach by not eating and all that, but of course Souchiro didn’t do quite well at first, complaining and all sorts. Then this is the quote of the series from Maya, "Don’t hurt yourself by thinking with brains you don’t have". HAHAHA! So funny. And it was also quite amusing to see Maya in her chibi form repeatedly spanking Souchirou with her wooden stick when he didn’t do things right. Also, there’s some tension and wavering in Aya’s heart because of Souchirou’s closeness to Maya. In short, you’ll find out that Souchirou likes Maya rather than Aya and because of that, in a way, Aya wants to beat her sister, though she’s hesitant and uncertain at times.
 
Later on, Maya had an encounter with Ryuuzaki. To cut things short, Maya managed to defeat Ryuuzaki, though we didn’t see what she did to him, but I supposed she pulled off some terror blow which left a huge ‘crater’ on Ryuuzaki’s chest. And because of that, the strong pro-wrestler Kouji Sagara, another member of The Enforcers, finishes off Ryuuzaki with some grappling move. Yeah, all of Ryuuzaki’s broke and he’ll be hospitalized in ICU. And he won’t be appearing anymore for the rest of the series. Looks like now it’s Sagara’s turn to do things.
 
But before Sagara can start doing things, he found out that his task has also been given to another member as well, namely, the skinny (is boney the right word?) Shirou Tagami. This Tagami guy stammers a lot and I felt that he has got some speech impairment. Although he looks like a zombie, he has that honour code while fighting and despises cowardly manners. I find his weapon, some sort of staff which can be transformed into sansetsukon during battles, amusing. Anyway, Sagara and Tagami are loggerheads on who’s to finish this job when Emi steps in. Looks like something big is going on.
 
Meanwhile while the 5 members of the Juken along with Chiaki, are having their fun outing at a bowling alley. But at the same time, The Enforcers are making their move and are going take out the Juken Club. So much so they even forcefully quarantined off the place for their battle. Yeah, a few episodes of action pack fights. To sum it up, Maya faces of with Emi in the women’s restroom. The winner, a closely fought match with Maya eventually emerging tops. Then it’s Aya against Tagami on the building’s rooftop. Meanwhile, Souchirou has been advised by Masataka to protect Aya meets Sagara on his way there. Masataka took on several low level members of The Enforcers before taking a one-on-one fight with the effeminate Oshi Kagurazaka later on. At the same time, the remaining thugs of The Enforcers corners and fights Bob in some room as Bob tries to protect Chiaki (by putting her in a locker?!).
 
So during the fights, we hear some little story of the characters like how Emi’s loyalty to Mitsuomi (more like her crush) leads her wanting to kill Maya and things like that, how Sagara sold himself to The Enforcers in exchange from Mitsuomi that his wrestling club will be revived. In the end, Sagara admits defeat to Souchirou after a lot of those pounding and male ego talk and Souchirou promising him a rematch in the future. But Souchiro may have been a little too late as Aya’s really going out of control and may even kill Tagami! After some words from Souchirou, Aya calmed down. Though Tagami’s really battered, Souchirou told Aya that she didn’t win the match because she was scared, even though she won but if she’s afraid, she still loses. 
 
What’s this, another member of The Enforcers, Bunshichi Tawara, is seen having a little chat with Maya. Some tough talk there coupled in with some sexual subtext. Like he said something like don’t stick your breasts out while talking to me because they’re like weapons and the only things he can’t beat in this world are shitake mushrooms and her breasts. Uh-huh. And she said something like I won’t let them touch those 2 (no, not referring to her boobs, but her new Juken Club members. Haha). What’s Bunshichi up to? Just to save time, this Bunshichi guy is some sort of an adviser in The Enforcers. Though he’s quite skilfull, he rarely jumps into fights as he prefer to stay out of it. You could say that he’s quite close to Mitsuomi too.
 
As for Bob and Masataka, they managed to dispose their lower level opponents. Chiaki’s a little mad at Bob for disregarding his safety to protect her like that. But she still loves him. Aww… I like the part where Masataka came in to check on Bob when the latter fainted and his head hit Masataka’s crotch. Ouch!!! And even Bob quipped that even with years of training, there’re some parts of the body which can’t be strong. Hehehe.
 
As the Juken members regroup it seems that Mitsuomi (now looking like a real typical bad-ass guy with that body suit and riding that motorbike of his) has finally arrived and moved in. Actually he has already arrived earlier on. It’s just that he had given some time limit to let Emi do things her way. And since it wasn’t a success, I guess he’s going in. As mentioned Masataka fought with Kagurazaka but their fight was interrupted when Mitsuomi came in and took over the fight himself. So the 2 brothers had their fight. Obviously, Masataka had no chance at all against his older brother and was even knocked out cold. That Mitsuomi guy even told Bob that he wanted him to join The Enforcers and not waste his powers in the Juken Club, which made Bob think a little. But Bob was snapped back to reality by Chiaki after she said something which I can’t really remember.
 
So it’s Souchirou and Mitsuomi. The mother of all battles is finally here. A lot of trading blows here and there until Bunshichi stops things. Yeah, it looks like the match isn’t going anywhere. With that, The Enforcers decides to retreat for now. And this is where the flashback really begins. Uh-huh, Chiaki’s mad and asking Maya why did her beloved Bob and Souchirou get dragged involved in this whole sh*t thing. Yeah, so for the next few episodes, it begins… the flashback… So why does Maya really detest Mitsuomi and wants revenge on him? Yeah, it’s all in the flashback…
 
Okay, I’m gonna cut things short. It seems 2 years ago Maya’s older brother, Shin Natsume, before his demise, possesd some power called Dragon Eyes, which allow him to see the past, present and future. But it seems because of that he went crazy because he couldn’t control it. Not like he started being crazy, but gradually you’ll notice his behaviour. That was what happened to Aya too when she fought Tagami earlier on. At that time, Shin was the head of The Enforcers and Mitsuomi had just entered Toudou Academy under Shin’s wing. Erm… Mitsuomi doesn’t look so terrifying then. Just your typical high school student. Looks like there’s some sort of friendship between Shin, Bunshichi and Mitsuomi. Yeah, those 3 can really click. Sort of. Also Shin had his motorcycle gang members called Katana, which is suddenly attacked by some mysterious person known as Katana Hunter.
 
To make things worse, Shin’s girlfriend then, the bespectacled Mana Kuzunoha starts to have an affair with Mitsuomi. Later on, we’ll find out that Mana’s actually been assigned as Shin’s girlfriend from the start as to observe and collect data about him for the Takayagi family. What the? Yeah, it’s getting real confusing here with all the families involve for whatever experiment. So I’ll just leave it all there. Anyway, Mana one day shows Mitsuomi and Bunshichi some video about Shin and herself and their relationship before Mitsuomi saw in horror that Shin killed innocent people just for ‘distractions’. Scary.
 
Meanwhile the other members of Katana came to a conclusion that the Katana Hunter may be Maya and plots revenge. But they’re being beaten up by the overprotective Shin. Soon, Katana disbanded. I guess they couldn’t take anymore of the beating. While Bunshichi tries to talk some sense into Shin, he finds out that the cause of Shin’s madness was the sword he carried, Reiki. Whenever he holds it, he would lose control of himself and become worse than an animal. Just like Aya. So later in the series you’ll find out that since Maya’s unaffected by Reiki’s powers, she carries the sword as she’s some sort of a ‘neutralizer’. So once Reiki has been taken away from Shin, he goes back to normal.
 
Then there’s that annual school tournament which decides which team gets to be The Enforcers. Since the Katana has been disbanded, Shin founded a new group called Juken along with Mitsuomi and a reluctant Bunshichi. Since the tournament requires 5 members, they need to find 2 more. Mitsuomi managed to convince Maya to join. I guess by this time Mitsuomi has gradually started to have feelings for Maya, and probably vice versa. But they still need 1 more. Then there’s this guy Kagesada Sugano AKA Kuso (meaning garbage/trash/sh*t) where Maya forced him to join because this guy wasn’t too fond of the tournament thingy and one of the teachers flex his powers and show him a little of his power which made him shiver in fear. Thus the teacher and the rest of the students decides to nickname him Kuzo. Which I think I should also call him by that. Plus, this guy has no fighting skills. So I guess he’s just there to make up for the numbers.
 
But before Shin can participate in the finals, Mitsuomi’s father, Dougen Takanayagi (who looks like Hiroshi Uchiyamada from Great Teacher Onizuka) wants Shin to be a true warrior by bringing out the evil in him. Shin refuses. Dougen then resorts to a dirty tactic by sending one of his men, Fu Chien, to attack Maya. I don’t really remember much about Fu Chien except that he’s evil and he got his arms ripped by Shin! Yes, his arms ripped off! Anyway, Shin killed him later in their fight even though Fu Chien has a new set of blades as his arms.
 
So while Shin goes berserk trying to save Maya and even attacked and innocent Emi then. Not even Maya’s plea could calm him down. Mitsuomi rushed to save Maya and tied to calm things down. This caused Shin to be jealous and angry. As a result, his Dragon Eyes are activated and blasts Mitsuomi with some super blow. I guess this is the turning point for Mitsuomi. That incident left him some scar on his chest which probably changed his character. Though he’s fine from that incident, at times Mitsuomi may cough out blood. Something which Mana explained Mitsuomi has a few years to live because of some powerful ki which speeds up his heart beat and such bla bla bla. Not that I understand.
 
As the Juken Club managed to reach the finals, only Bunshichi and Kuso were there. Yeah, some Bruce Lee look-a-like there. Mitsuomi turned up at the last minute and beat up everyone real good in a short amount of time. And the audience think that the other opponents are just lousy, having lost like that. So the Juken Club will be The Enforcers of Toudou Academy. But by this time, Shin has become even more insane and will kill those who come close to Maya. Though Mitsuomi promised that he’ll defeat Shin, Shin soon challenges Mitsuomi to be The Enforcers’ president. So during the fight Mitsuomi seems to be winning until Shin decides to use his Dragon Eyes. But Mana used her body to shield Mitsuomi from Shin’s blasts. Shin then realized what he has done was wrong and together with Mana they both committed suicide!
 
Later on, Mitsuomi removed his father from the family organization and install himself as the new head. Yeah, Dougen’s men were gunned down Mafia style. Mitsuomi then restructures The Enforcers to expand their powers in Toudou Academy. Maya who didn’t like all this, blames Mitsuomi for Shin’s death and becomes the new captain of the Juken Club and vows revenge on Mitsuomi.
 
Good news is, end of flashback! YAHOOOOO!!! Well, the flashback wasn’t told in 1 sitting but 2. Though the first one was told by Maya, she didn’t really finish it. Souchirou, Bob and Chiaki who’re still unsatisfied with what they heard had the flashback continued by Bunshichi when the latter visited their apartment. Yeah, so a couple of episodes of ‘back to present time’ before viewers forget who Souichirou and Bob is.
 
So once Souichirou and Bob knew the whole long winded story, they prepare themselves to take on The Enforcers. However, before anything could happen, because of Aya’s wavering feelings, she stole Reiki which is locked within the dojo, much to Maya’s horror when she discovered it was missing. Of course, she went to inform Mitsuomi about it, and since both of them did not want to repeat the past, they both decided to call a truce and work together to find Aya. Yeah, Aya could be really dangerous with those Dragon Eyes.
 
Aya then took refuge at Masataka’s place. Well, though I knew that Masataka had a crush on Aya all this while but he’s just holding because Aya’s in love with Souichirou, but I didn’t know that Masataka’s a pervert! Yeah, he’s having a hard fantasizing things and time controlling himself from wanting to do perverted things while Aya’s at his place, especially when she’s taking a bath. Uh-huh, how he can’t let this chance slip away and things like that. Pervert! But he eventually realized (that he’s a loser) that it isn’t right to take advantage when one is in his/her weakest moments after seeing Aya like that, and punched himself in the face. You should’ve had better self control from the beginning.
 
As the 2 walked to school the next day, Maya managed to find Aya and asked her to return Reiki. But upon seeing Mitsuomi, Aya flees into school. Then she had a short encounter with Emi whereby Aya unleashed her super power, blasting Emi away. Mitsuomi decides to step in. Just then Masataka interrupts and prepares to fight his older brother. This is the funny part. Souichirou with Bob riding pillion on the latter’s motorbike burst into the scene telling Masataka that supporting characters should stay out of it as the motorbike crashed into Masataka. HAHAHA! So darn funny.
 
Before you know it, Souichirou and Mitsuomi had their second round battle. Some terror aura and power unleashed by both of them as everybody could only stand there and watch. When Aya, watching from the rooftop has had enough of it, her scream caused some powerful blast which created a crater below. Looks like Souichirou and Mitsuomi are very bruised. Then I thought Aya was gonna jump off the building when she said "Goodbye Souichirou", but instead she sum up her courage and gave her support and cheered on Souichirou to do his best. And before that she decided to give back Reiki and tossed it to where Maya’s standing.
 
As the 2 got up and were going to continue their fight, Maya then steps in and asked them both to stop. After giving Souichirou a punch, he asked Mitsuomi not to overwork himself as the final battle doesn’t end here. Yup, she wants Mitsuomi to give them a chance to enter the preliminary rounds of the annual school tournament next month. And they way Maya gestures to Mitsuomi was as though as the 2 were lovebirds! In fact, the other characters said that this whole mess started in the first place was because of their lovebirds’ quarrel. Well, I guess they show their love in a different manner. Or is it? This gives a new meaning to a love-hate relationship. I’m still wondering why Maya hates Mitsuomi and blames him for Shin’s death. Really dunno. Anyway, Mitsuomi agrees and walks away. So it looks like the Juken Club will have to undergo some serious training. And Aya is back to her ol’ self as she rejoins her pals.
 
So once the tv series ended, I though hey, maybe they’ll start things off in the OVA since it’s only 2 episodes and won’t be that much to cover. But unfortunately it didn’t. In short, the tournament didn’t start at all! How disappointing. But instead, we have more of the drama between the characters. I felt that the OVA was an extension rather than anything new or progressive.
 
In the OVA, we see Aya still unsure about Souichirou’s feelings towards her, though we know Souchirou has his on Maya. Yeah, lots of wondering, thinking and spacing from Aya. Then as the 2 were walking together, suddenly they’re being ambushed by some martial art mobs. To cut things short, they’re actually those family crap sh*t thing, out to test Souichirou. Yeah, and it looks like Souichirou’s mom, Makiko, looks too young to be his mom. And she has that oversized plaster as her eyepatch. Weird. She’s also teaming up with Dougen for something. Something which I couldn’t remember and not really want to know. Uh-huh some experiment thing. Let’s just leave this there too.
 
Some talking here and there between Souchirou and his mom to make him realize some things. Bla bla bla. Even Bunshichi had some with Mitsuomi. After Mitsuomi had left on his bike, he started coughing out blood again. To make things worse, a cat jumped out of nowhere causing Mitsuomi to swerve. Oh oh. Looks like he crashed. Is he okay? Back at the Juken Club, Bob underwent some intensive training by running with a rubber tyre attached to it and Maya sitting on the tyre. I wonder how effective is that.
 
Aya who still wants Souichirou to be hers, then challenges Maya to a duel. Yeah, so some cat and mouse chase throughout Toudou Academy. There’s this one funny part whereby Souichirou and Bob were both taking a leak in the men’s when Souichirou took a little peek at Bob’s… ahem ahem. Then in Souchirou’s shock, he yelled "You beast!!!". Bob’s smiling real wide and shaking his bon bon in happiness. Hehehe. Because that Aya-Maya chase caught their attention, they decided to see what’s going on too.
 
Meanwhile, Mitsuomi has been discharged from hospital. Looks like he’s all right. Back at one of Todou’s Academy rooftop, Maya now faces off with Aya. After some sisterly talk, Aya seems to be losing at the losing end. Then after some words of encouragement from Souichirou, Aya gets her confidence back and continues with the duel. I’m not sure who won the match, but everybody seemed satisfied with the way things turned out.
 
Later on, Souichirou meets Mitsuomi for a fight to the death with Maya tagging along. Some unleashing of super powers from both sides. Looks like Souchirou managed to bring out that dragon in him. And when finally Mitsuomi thought that he has finally lost, he was ready to let a transformed Souichirou kill him as he thought that this was what Shin wanted of him too. But before Souichirou could land the final blow, he collapsed and returned back to the blond Souichirou. Looks like their match has to be postponed again. Uh-huh. As Mitsuomi walks away, he tells Souichirou that they’ll finish their fight at the preliminaries and asked him to prepare to die. Souichirou just gave an uneregetic "Yeah". At this point, they still got that macho male ego thingy. Haih…
 
So in the final scenes, we see Bob still undergoing that tyre training. And Aya still not giving up on Souichirou. Yeah, she’s still asking him to be her husband, making him blush a little as they both walked home. And it’s back to business as usual at The Enforcers’ headquarters. Is that Mitsuomi smiling a little over there as he ponder over things? We see Bunshichi lying lazily on the couch, much to Emi’s annoyance. Hey, what do you know. In this OVA, Chiaki and the other Enforcer members didn’t make their appearance. Well, maybe they’re not so important after all.
 
Overall, if you want to know what happens after that, probably you have to read the manga. Uh-huh. More flashbacks and maybe the tournament will start. Since I didn’t read the manga, I’m just speculating. Hey, there’s even an alternate retelling of the flashback called Tenjou Tenge: The Past Chapter, which is a 90 minute movie version of it. Like I haven’t had enough of it all already. Yeah, it’s more like "Don’t tell me your problems because I don’t wanna hear it… AGAIN!!".
 
Though I’m not a fan of Japanese rap music, but it seems that the opening theme, Bomb A Head! V, sounds quite okay to me and it does fit nicely as a theme for the series. I find that little hip-hop dancing from Bob and Aya a little amusing and interesting. Hmm… How I wish I could do those moves myself too. Hehe. Just kidding. While the ending theme isn’t anything much, the one for episode 24 is like a photo group of all the cast and characters from the past to the present. From Shin and his buddies to his Katana members to The Enforcers to the current Juken Club to even Souichirou’s younger days with all those bully boys.
 
Because of the violence, blood and gore of the fight scenes, this series may not be suitable for younger audiences. Plus with a couple of sexual content, this show is deifinitely for mature audiences. Well, like they say, violence and sex sells. My favourite fight scenes are still those early episodes and the one the Juken took on The Enforcers in the bowling alley. But if you like character building, development and drama through flashbacks, then I think you may like this one. Though the storyline is another thing and that whole flashback thingy seems kind of a drag to me. Come to think of it, I wouldn’t want my past to be told in that manner too. That’s because there isn’t anything much to tell in the first place. Hehe.

One

March 2, 2007

This is one of the most confusing animes that I’ve ever watched in my entire life. Yup, I’m talking about the anime called One. Yes, that’s what this anime is called. And with a name like that, it’s really really going to be tough to find any information and answers from the internet. Yeah, about 1,000,000,000 hits. At least it has a second title, so it’s full name would be One – Kagayaku Kisetsu E. Phew.
 
Even though this 2001 OVA production has only 4 episodes, I had to watch it twice just to understand things. But unfortunately, after watching it for the second time, I can’t really say that I did understand things. Sighs… As expected, a lot of "what the…", "erm…", "huh?" lines from my part. Maybe the confusing storyline and plot is all part of the drama of the series. Yeah, and they mix it with some supernatural and mystery ambience with it. Also, this anime is based on a game of the same name.
 
But before I blog on the each of the episodes, I’d just like to sum up what the story is all about. This line is taken from Anime News Network and the story goes something like this. A guy named Kouhei Orihara returns to his town after a long disappearance to fulfill the promises he made to several girls in his childhood. He suffered a memory loss and carries a tragic past. A strange ambient surrounds the OVA… It’s almost like a dream, like memories from the past trying to come together in one piece but without being able to…
 
Seems simple and enough to tempt me to watch out of curiosity, isn’t it? And before that too, I’d like to mention (and warn) that in the series, there’ll be another person who looks like Orihara. Namely Hikami. Dunno whether he is his twin or look-a-like or what. But due to the way they show things, you’re not gonna be sure sometimes which of the 2 guys is him. So for convenience, if ever such situation arises, I’ll just refer to him as ‘that guy’. Simple.
 
You’ll notice a few similarities between each of the episodes. Like how each episode has a name that is associated with some forces of nature. And each episode features 2 girls in which Orihara would interact with. In addition, we see that guy playing a different classical instrument in each episode. Also the ending theme are different for each episode and is sung by one of the voice actresses of the girl for that particular episode. There’ll be changes in the scene whereby one minute they show the girls and then the scene changes to that guy or some flashback. So here we go and see if you (especially me) can figure out what’s really going on.
 
Episode 1 (The Rain Chapter)
As usual, the episode starts off with some sort of flashback of a young boy running. And when he stops, he noticed a girl watching him nearby. He looks away for a while and looks back. Guess what? The girl disappears. Ohhh… Things do get started on an eerie note.
 
So the scene changes to a current one. And the girls featured for this episode will be Akane Satomura (who’s locks seems too heavy for her head) and Shiiko. It’s raining and Akane is waiting in the rain when the scene changes to that guy playing the piano. Back to Akane when she caught a glimpse of that guy getting onto a bus. She stares at him for quite a long time before her friend Shiiko gets suspicious and asked what’s going on. Akane replied that it’s nothing. Suddenly the sky turned from sunny to a rainy one. And Akane said something like "Something I’ve forgotten…". Wah! It’s already so darn confusing after just a few minutes.
 
At school, Akane heard somebody playing the piano in the music room from a distance. A short flashback of her seeing that guy before. Soon she rushes there only to bump into Shiiko. But Akane rushes off. Once Akane had arrived at the music room, she finds nobody there. Then that guy comes in and asks what she wants but Akane replied that she heard someone playing the piano earlier on. However, that guy says nobody has been playing it, since that guy takes out the piano key and unlocks it. I’m getting this creepy feeling now.
 
Later as Akane’s waiting in the rain spacing out, that guy offers his umbrella to her but Akane ran off and waits under the bus stop shelter. That guy said "Did you make a promise to meet someone? What a cruel person to break a promise to you". The bus then arrives and Akane gets on. A short flashback and some spacing out.
 
Next day, it’s the same thing. Akane heard someone playing the piano and rushes there. But this time she saw that guy playing it this time. That guy replied that his name is Kouhei Orihara and said something like "You remembered me". And this is the creepy part. Outside the room, that guy walks away. So there are 2 of them? Or is it an illusion or what?
 
Anyway, Akane chat with Orihara like how they grew up together as they’re walking in the rain. Then a flashback of that young boy picking up a small chameleon-like statue at some temple. He’s saying "Forever… was nowhere to be found…". But some girl appears and say "Forever does exist. It’s right here". Back to present time, Akane gives Orihara a present for listening to her story. As the bus arrives, Orihara gets on and says "This time I’ll be the one to wait". Akane replied "Is that a promise?". The bus leaves.
 
Then the next day, Akane noticed that guy playing the piano but she didn’t rush there. Instead it seems that Shiiko bumped into Akane this time as Shiiko’s rushing somewhere. When that guy finished playing the piano, Akane claps and says "Hikami-kun, you’ve finally improved". Oh, now this guy’s Hikami. Hikami says "You finally remembered my name. He’ll return on special days". Akane replied "Who?". Yeah, who buddy. Must be that Orihara guy, of course. Akane continues "Is there someone by that name?". Hikami then said "No. If you don’t remember, it’s okay". With that some name in some book disappears.
 
The next day, we see Akane and Shiiko walking home from school together happily. And the sky seems to be clear. End of episode. WARGH!!!!!!! What’s happening? What’s going on? That Orihara guy is the one big mystery that’s causing my a major concussion. I mean, who is he? Who is this Hikami guy to Orihara too. I thought Akane remembered him. But I suppose she just forgot for the convenience of the thickening of the plot. Let’s move on.
 
Episode 2 (The Wind Chapter)
Just like in the 1st episode, this one too begins with a flashback of some young boy running. But this flashback has some add ons. Yup, this time, that girl said to him "Do you remember me? I remember you, Kouhei Orihara". So that little boy’s Orihara. Actually I’ve already knew it since but this confirms it. Then some short and fast flashback in some hospital and that chameleon.
 
Back to present time. In this episode, another 2 different girls will be featured. They are Rumi Nanase and Mizuka Nagamori. And instead of waiting for the bus, we see one of them in the train and the other one waiting at the railroad crossing.
 
At the school’s swimming pool, Rumi and Mizuka are having some chat. And over the school rooftop, we see that guy playing a violin. This guy must be pretty multi talented in musical instruments. Or is it. But anyway, while Rumi is swimming, she spots a seed in a swimming pool but doesn’t bother too much about it.
 
Later while the 2 girls are walking home, Rumi’s talking about when Mizuka transferred to this school about a year ago. Rumi then said something like "You lookd like you were carrying a violin case or something, and beed dumped by someone". This caused Mizuka to go into some flashback mode which sees her carrying a violin case while waiting at the railroad crossing. Rumi asked what’s with her spacing out when Mizuka said she forgot something and ran off. Rumi then caught a glimpse of that guy across the railroad tracks. She ran towards him and they walked off together.
 
Next day, Mizuka went to the instruments room and saw a violin case there. A flashback of how she carved some initials on it. She’s taken back to reality when that guy comes in and asked her what she’s doing before taking out the violin and play. Mizuka asked him "Hikami-kun, haven’t you forgotten about Kouhei Orihara?". He then replied "He’ll definitely come back".
 
Then the next scene we see Rumi and that guy (presumably Orihara if I go by the theory that a guy can’t be at 2 places at 1 time) walking towards some cherry blossom watching place while chatting. She said something about how he protected her and Mizuka. Suddenly, that guy goes into shock mode and a flashback of that temple and chameleon with that eternity phrase thingy. But this time, there’s an additional line, "I’m your replacement sister". Uh-huh. Rumi then asked him about some promise on why he didn’t come. He apologizes and is spacing out. Soon that guy runs back down the stairs, pass the railway tracks, back to school and towards the instrument room. There he saw the violin case and when he touched it, a flashback of the initial carving event. Is this making any sense? Not at the moment to me.
 
Meanwhile, as Rumi’s waiting at the lake, that guy arrives. Looks like he’s back again. Or is it the other one? Hmm… Anyway, Rumi thought that he had forgotten about the promise as she showed him some ground cherries but drops them. Then several cherries began to resurface on the lake. Rumi looking quite scared (so am I). And with a big gust of wind, that guy vanished. Literally, gone with the wind, huh. Then back at the instrument room, that guy finished playing the violin when he leaves the room with the violin case. He meets Mizuka at the railroad crossings and then they… disappeared??!! CREEPY!!! What the?!
 
Then Rumi and Mizuka together at some festival together when the former says it’s her first time here but it somehow feels nostalgic. Mizuka gave her some ground cherries which caused her to have some sudden flashback and at the same time dropping the gold fish they got at the festival. But since it wasn’t anything big, they just left like as though nothing much happened. And we see the train leaving before the episode ends. HUH???!!!!!
 
Episode 3 (The Snow Chapter)
For this episode our female protagonists will be Misaki Kawana and Mio Kouzuki. But instead of that usual flashback, we see a flashback of a young Mio crossing a bridge then sitting on a swing when she saw that boy (yeah, the young that guy, get it) watching her and said "That’s the 1st time I saw". They draw some pitures together in some sketchbook. As the boy leaves she said "Our promise has yet to be fulfilled".
 
Back to the present time, on the school rooftop, Mio drawing in her sketchbook as the blind Misaki arrives. Mio then approached her and showed some words she written "Is the sunset pretty?" to her. Misaki then touched and feels her face and says "Don’t worry, the sunset is pretty". Then nearby that guy playing the flute as a painter girl stares at him and starts to wonder. Yeah, soon it started snowing.
 
At the music room, that guy staring into some notebook. Scene changes to the rooftop and Misaki asked him "How many points would you give for today’s sunset?". He says 65 points. But Misaki says she’ll give 95 points. Why? Because she missed a part of his song. What’s that gotta do with it? It seems that guy is also playing his flute at Mio’s rehersal.
 
The next scene sees Misaki entering the music room while it’s snowing outside. But that guy says he isn’t here. I’m assuming this is Hikami. Misaki says she thought it’s Orihara who’s playing but Hikami asked will she wait for him. She says no. She also mentions that this is her first time in this room. Meanwhile, Mio and that guy waiting at train station. Back to the music room, Misaki explains before she lost her sight, he used to live near her place and how he brought her to a whole new world. She continues by saying how he promised to play the flute at the graduation ceremony.
 
In the train, Mio takes out sketchbook and remembers something. Uh-huh, that flashback and promise thingy we saw earlier on. Then Mio and that guy at a snow covered playground. Mio sat on the swing and once again took out her sketchbook. When she shows him a picture of that chameleon, he goes into shock. You’ve guessed it too. That flashback we see in the beginning of this episode. Haih… I’m thinking all this repetitive flashbacks are just to make the show longer.
 
Anyway, he’s lending her something and promised to come back. Then another flashback, the one where he’s running. Yeah, he’s running to a hospital and once there, he’s shock to see the chamelon lying on the floor and his sister, Misao, dying. *Sighs*. That eternity phrase again.
 
Back at the music room, as Misaki leaves, Hikami says "That guy may never come back. He’s taking a trip to eternity". Uh-huh. Why why why WHY?! Then Mio and that guy on a bridge together. As Mio looks back, that guy’s gone, vanished. And slowly, so are his footsteps in the snow. What’s this supposed to mean? Then at the graduation ceremony as Mio’s performing and Misaki’s watching, wee see that guy playing the flute behind the stage curtains. The scene changes to one on a beach whereby the wind flips open the sketchbook on the rocks to the page of the crayon drawn chameleon as it disappears too. It’s already 3 episodes and I don’t know what’s really happening!!! Somebody help me please. Hope the last one can solve it all.
 
Episode 4 (The Cherry Blossom Chapter)
Back to that usual flashback of that young boy running. That have you forgotten me and I remember Kouhei Orihara line. Then the hospital scene and that chameleon before one where that guy stands under a tree and a girl says "We’ll meet again". He says "I will return… so don’t forget about me". The girl then asked "Is that a promise?" when he replied "Yes… and eternal union". I see. Anyway, the girls for this last chapter are Mayu Shiina and Mizuka. Yes, that Mizuka from episode 2. She makes her second appearance here.
 
As Mizuka pushes her bicycle out of school, wee see that guy playing a cello this time in some hallway. Then that guy’s twin comes in and said "I’m afraid she’s forgotten about me". Other guy says "But you’re going, right?". The twin then walks away and disappears while the other one says "Goodbye, but we’ll meet again". Now it’s really getting creepy.
 
Mizuka saw a little girl, Mayu, crying near a tree and asked her what’s wrong. Mayu said she died. No not Mayu, her pet which she buried there lah. Later when Mizuka’s painting a picture of that guy, she heard somebody playing some music but doesn’t know who. A flashback of that waiting at railroad crossing with violin case. She then meets up with Hikami who says he’s playing the cello. Mizuka says how nostalgic that song made her feel. Hikami says that he’ll return but Mizuka replied who. Oh oh. Shock waves for Hikami. Just then, Mayu came crying and hugged Mizuka. The 3 then have dessert and Mizuka explained that Mayu’s pet ferret had died. Hikami says everytime she thinks of her ferret, she becomes sad, that’s why people want to forget.
 
Then the next scene shows a temple covered with blood coloured puddles as that guy saw Akane and Shiiko walking pass by, then Misaki praying at a temple, followed by Rumi standing near that cliff by the lake, and finally Mio who’s drawing and dropped her pencil. He tries to pick it up but his hand just went through it. He’s in shock. He ran back down all the way to school and keeps on until he got lost in some dark forest. Yeah, he’s lost and so am I.
 
Meanwhile, Mizuka and Mayu are talking when Mizuka stops and ponders while Mayu went ahead. Wee see Mizuka’s flashback when she was young with that guy at temple talking about if you lie, you’ll swallow 10,000 needles. Then she spots that guy playing the cello who tells her that that guy had already left. Some railroad crossing flashback and that I am your susbtitute for your younger sister line when he suddenly says no and she says "Please come back". That violin case carving flashback before Mizuka then hurriedly left school on her bicycle.
 
Mayu arrived at the tree where she buried her pet ferret and saw that guy sprinkling some sakura petals on it. That guy asked her name then said that he is Kouhei Orihara. A big gust of wind and Orihara saying don’t forget as he disappears. Mizuka then arrived and Mayu told her that he left and don’t forget. In town, Mizuka caught a glimpse of that guy on a bus and decided to chase after it.
 
She arrived at some hospital. More of those chameleon on the floor flashback and how she watched him crying over his little sister. Looks like the place now is desolated, abandoned and messy. Then this part I don’t get. That chameleon floating on the pond soon sinks to the bottom to an underwater bridge and town below??!! HUH??!!
 
Later, Mizuka then spots that guy near the river. When he said "Eternity never existed", she answered "Eternity does exists". He then turned and asked who is it. Mizuka said "Have you forgotten about me? I remember Kouhei Orihara". That guy looked like he’s a little shock like as though he isn’t expecting her or anyone to remember him. She then continued and told him her name is Mizuka Nagamori before saying "I promised and so I remember". Then there’re sakura petals everywhere as Orihara ran towards her they both embraced with Mizuka looking quite happy. The end.
 
THAT"S IT????!!!! HUH?!?!?!?!?! WHAT IN THE WORLD HAS JUST HAPPENED????!!?!!!?! I still didn’t really get it. Oh dear, oh my. Maybe I should see it again… NOT!!!! I think I don’t want to be confused all over again. So let’s look at the next chapter, shall we? Just kidding. The conclusion, that is.
 
Conclusion (The Analyzing Sh*t Chapter… sorry, just kidding)
Even though I don’t know what’s going on still. But I managed to find an anonymous viewer’s comment and point of view which goes something like this: Orihara when he was young, made a promise to a girl to be her ‘only one’. But he forgot about it and broke it. So he vanishes together with people’s memories of him. After vanishing, he’s reunited with his sis, whom he made the promise with. But he doesn’t want to end it like that and wants to return to reality to fulfill promises he made and find a way to return. In a way, Orihara is stuck in some time loop and the only way to return or to be saved is if someone remebers him. So he goes round fulfilling promises to several girls in hopes that someon will remember him.
 
Ah… I see, if it’s put in that way, then I suppose I can understand a bit lah. Makes sense a little. Thanks whoever you are. So I see that’s why he’s going round like that. But that promise thing isn’t so prominent in the series, not like he really asked the girls to fulfill whatever the promise he made. Also I thought that this Orihara guy’s a slut and two-timing jerk since he’s going round with several girls in which ‘dumped’ him in the end. It seems that only Mizuka remembers him and whether or not the 2 will live happily ever after probably isn’t that important. Maybe the life lesson here is not to forget somebody. If not it would make your first encounter with that person meaningless. Maybe. Just guessing.
 
So a lot of things still remain a mystery like Hikami. Who is he really. A twin or what? Still can’t get over it all. And what’s so tragic about his past? I mean, yeah if you consider losing your little sister while you’re young to be very tragic, then I suppose can lah. Maybe the producer had a similar incident too? And that chameleon… What’s it got to do with it all? Really dunno.
 
The entire series managed to give that creepy and scary atmosphere. Yeah, especially the soundtrack. It’s really eerie. One moment the music becomes loud and ‘shocking’ which made my heart skip a little faster and I’d be wondering "what’s gonna happen? What is it, what is it?". And sometimes the silence is deafening too when suddenly they play those eerie strings. *Shivering*.
 
But if you people like this kind of mysterious supernatural kind of show, then I suppose you can go ahead and watch it. Good luck trying to understand at first go. Okay, so I still didn’t. Also, I wouldn’t consider it to be a harem anime. Though there are many girls (they’re not that kawaii to me. Just look normal), it’s not like they love him or want to be with him. Heck, they couldn’t even remember him! I’m not sure about the game, though. It may be good or it may be different. But let’s just leave it there.
 
So ‘one’ last thing. Why is this anime called One in the first place. Is it in reference to that ‘One’ guy. Or is it that ‘One’ girl who will set him free. Maybe it’s that ‘One’ promise or thing or probably it’s just a ‘One’-off anime title. Or perhaps it’s just ‘One’ big screwed up anime to screw with our minds. And today’s special guest number is ‘One’ brought to you from the Sesame Street gang production. See, my mind’s already gone cuckoo.