Kodomo No Jikan

September 27, 2008

Warning! If you can’t stand even the slightest bit of ecchi, it is very advisable that you DO NOT, I repeat, YOU DO NOT want to watch this anime series. Uh huh, if you do, then I suppose it’s true that curiosity kills the cat. Kodomo No Jikan is filled with such ecchiness so much so that I think the producers and creators have extreme lolicon fetish.
 
So for those first timers or people who are not use to this kind of genre, I don’t blame you if you feel that this is some what child porn. Uh huh. But you’re not going to see any intercourse activity here. So how bad is this lolicon comedy series? Take for instance the main protagonist of the series, Rin Kokonoe. To summarize into 1 word, she is horny! That’s right. It’s that ‘H’ word. To make things worse, Rin is only 8 years old! Woah! How does a young little kindergarten kid know so much of these adult stuff? Blame the age of the internet if you will. Information is accessible at our young generation’s fingertips anytime.
 
It may bug viewers to see how wide knowledgeable Rin’s sexual knowledge is. She is so unashamed of it, so bold, so daring, so flirtatious, so ‘corrupted’, so naughty, so mischievous, so… horny. Stuffs which people don’t even think or suspect to see from cute little darling angels. Yeah, like they say, it’s more than meets the eye. She isn’t the only horny one around. Why, even her ‘partner in crime’, Kuro Kagami, the fashion-conscious rich little brat is equally as bad as her but doesn’t usually display it in terms of action. I notice she is more ‘verbal’. Then to complete the group of trio is the busty Mimi Usa. At her age, she is already showing physical signs of being a mature woman. However unlike her other 2 buddies, Mimi isn’t horny and is gentler but slow. Another thing that viewers may notice is the long big fluff of hair these 3 girls have on their head. At first glance, it may seem too heavy for them to shoulder. It looks like it could break their neck anytime. I mean, having such long hair at such a young age?
 
Viewers expect to see some sort of loli ecchiness in each of the 12 episodes. But the thing is, the girls aren’t going around seducing little boys their age or older guys with money. As seen in episode 1, we are introduced to a newly transferred kindergarten teacher, Daisuke Aoki. He looks like a freshie 23 year old who has just stepped into the teaching profession and is quite looking forward to it. I know that most senior teachers will say "Wait 10 years down the road lah…" but I guess it’s no harm in starting out with a positive attitude. Unfortunately on his first day, while daydreaming in his positivism, he accidentally enters class 3-1 (the class he is in charge of) and accidentally sees the girls changing naked. One of them being Rin. I’m not sure how Rin has this thinking, but she does mention that a guy sees her naked body, they will have to marry. To cut a long story short, Rin is head over heals over Aoki. So this is where the ecchi part comes in. Rin will try several ways to seduce Aoki and even blackmails him! OMG! Aoki can’t do anything or report to the authorities because who in the world is going to believe that an 8 year old is sexually harassing him. Normal people would think it is the other way around. Why, Rin even threatens to scream rape if Aoki doesn’t do her bidding. So you might guess that this Aoki teacher gets corrupted throughout the series and in the end they have some illicit teacher-student age-gap affair. Wrong. Aoki is a good guy, a good teacher, though he may be a greenhorn. Though he gets thrown into this sticky situation, he still sticks firmly to his believes as a teacher and tries to sort out the problem, though it may not work out as it should.
 
To make things even worse, Rin’s pal Kuro is some sort of a lesbian. In other words, Kuro is in love with Rin and I mean she likes her and wants to be more than just friends. However, Rin doesn’t feel that way and thinks that her love is that usual friendship of theirs. So when Aoki comes into the picture and threatens her ‘dream’, Kuro instantly doesn’t like Aoki and even sarcastically calls him ‘Virgin’ because of his lack of experience in lots of areas… Yeah, not only Kuro verbally abuses Aoki, but sometimes physically as well, like kicking his crotch! OUCH! Now that will really make him impotent. Naughty girl!
 
So after Aoki clears up that misunderstanding and introduces himself as the class’s homeroom teacher, he notices that 1 of his students, Mimi, has a high absentee record. One of the other staff teachers, Kyouko Houin, tells him that the class’s previous teacher, Nakamura, seems to cruelly pick on Mimi a lot, instilling some sort of fear. In retaliation, Rin and the other classmates did something horrible which made Nakamura hospitalized! Oh dear. That’s why Aoki is here to replace him. What is Aoki getting into. It’s going to be a rough ride. As Aoki tries to understand the situation, he learns about a stray cat that Rin seems to play and feed with, Nya. Aoki also learns a thing a two about Mimi via Rin and taking her words for it, Aoki decides to make a house visit at Mimi’s place. Though Mimi is still afraid, Aoki is able to break the ice and bring some confidence back to her. Now this is what a teacher should always do and be. With Mimi’s confidence back, she even returns to class. One day, Aoki heard from Kuro how Rin is trying to save Nya stuck up a tree, by climbing up the shaky branch as well. But the branch breaks. Luckily, Aoki was there in time to break her fall. She fall on him (uh huh. In addition to fall for him. Hahaha, just kidding). Rin remembers a similar incident of being saved while she was younger. Of course she too is worried about Aoki’s well-being (not to mention her future boyfriend-cum-husband). But rest assured, there is nothing wrong with Aoki as he recuperates in the infirmary. To show her gratitude, she kisses his forehead while he is sleeping. But if you think that’s the end of the horniness, well, after Aoki is back on to his feet, at the hallway, Rin along with Kuro and Mimi lifts up their skirt to show their undies to Aoki! Extreme! And that’s just the start of his troubles…
 
In episode 2, Aoki asks the class to write down their hopes but they aren’t really enthusiastic about it. Furthermore, we all know by now that Rin really likes Aoki so when she wrote this disturbing sentence with hope in it "I hope you will ejaculate inside me", and shows it to a surprised Aoki, I guess that’s a sign of her advances… This kid is bloody creative but she used it on a wrong basis. Hehe. So Rin continues to mess with Aoki with her ‘horny cheekiness’. That night, Aoki goes out drinking at a bar with his teaching colleagues, Houin and Oyajima, as he expresses his rough time handling the kids. You’ll guess that Houin has a crush on Aoki but her several hinting have always failed partly because Aoki is too engrossed in thinking about his student’s welfare. Like this bar drinking session, Houin only wanted to invite Aoki but due to certain misunderstandings, Oyajima too tagged along. After the drinking session, Aoki goes home and gets a little confidence back after reading his student’s assignments, which are a little better. However, this doesn’t translate into good grades as his class experiences a decline when they failed their tests, including Rin. Aoki ponders what is wrong when all he did was tried his best to provide good education to those kids.
 
So Aoki calls Rin for extra class but finds out that Rin purposely failed her tests so that she could be with Aoki. Rin even suggests a reward (like to kiss) if she does well but of course Aoki just brush it off. The next day, Aoki finds it hard trying to control his students but it seems Rin is like some sort of ‘leader’ and when she tells the class to listen to Aoki, they immediately do so. When the results of the next test are out, Rin scores perfect. Again, Houin tries to ask Aoki out for dinner but the latter turns her down after spotting Rin. Thinking that he may have loli fetish? Aoki praises Rin and Rin wants him to hold and walk her back home. As she gives directions to her place, they talk about things like how Rin really likes him and even manages to make Aoki say the same to her. But in the end, this is just one of Rin’s mischief as they have been walking around in circles and are back to the school grounds where they started. I guess Rin got her kicks there. Aoki must be realizing he had been had once again. Rin rushes off back home, leaving Aoki behind. When she reaches home, she tells her guardian, Reiji, how her teacher likes her. But Reiji seems to have his reservations and suspicions about it. Meanwhile, Houin is wondering why she can’t get it right with Aoki.
 
Episode 3 sees Rin up to her no-good seducing schemes one more. She tries to send a naughty picture of herself by SMS-ing it to Aoki. Kuro is devastated and rushes to Aoki to prevent him from seeing but in the end it was just spam. Even though it isn’t Aoki’s fault, Kuro proceeds to give him a kick where it hurt most. Aoki notices Mimi’s busty-ness and during the conversation with Houin, the latter misunderstood that he may like little girl’s boobs and probably hers doesn’t really matter… At class, Kuro thinks she has a chance to have an indirect kiss from Rin by drinking from a packet drink after Rin gives it to her but Aoki takes it away. Kuro tells him not to waste it so Aoki himself drinks it! Oh, the indirect kiss chance went to that virgin. Meanwhile Mimi consults with Houin about her huge boobs and after finding out what makes them grow so big, Mimi decides not to drink milk. That girl dislikes her body and thinks it’s a ‘heavy’ burden. After school, Aoki spots a magazine which Kuro always reads. To his surprise, it’s one of those goth-loli fashions. And the other boys misunderstood him when they saw him pick up that book. The next day, a couple of classmate boys tease Mimi for wearing a bra. This causes her to run out in tears. Rin and Kuro proceeds to give them a good bashing. Later the duo comforted Mimi and finds out her bra size is wrong and the trio soon went to do some bra shopping for Mimi. That Kuro girl is so rich that she even has her own private clothing department. So when Aoki asks Rin’s help about Mimi’s case, the latter agrees and in exchange gets a hug. But Aoki soon finds out what Rin and co had already done for her and notices Mimi is now smiling. Later outside the classroom, Aoki overhears Rin and the girls talking about ‘aka-chan ningyou’. That literally means ‘baby doll’ and Aoki thinks it’s those toys girls play with. Feeling no harm, but when he opens the door, he finds the trio in sexy baby doll lingerie! It then dawned to him that those dresses are the ones he saw in the magazines Kuro read. Ah, the second time Aoki sees Rin naked. Well almost. I’m sure Rin will come up with a plan to make him take some responsibility or excuses to continue with her flirtatious ways.
 
In episode 4, Kuro claims it is an invasion of privacy when Aoki suggests his students to write about their parents. Furthermore, Aoki finds out from Oyajima and another strict colleague, Sae Shirai, about how useless it is nowadays for teachers to make house visits. Aoki decides to take Houin’s advice by researching about Rin through the archives and to his surprise finds out that Rin’s mom, Aki, has passed away and that she is living with a guardian named Reiji. So is it because without the warmth of a mother’s love that Rin went astray and became horny? Reiji is surprised to find Rin’s assignment about her mom but acts like as though he didn’t see it. After Rin hands over her assignment, she notices how Aoki is treating kinder than before after she got a little injured. Funny part was when Aoki carried Rin in his arms back to class, Mimi frantically tries to prevent Kuro from seeing it. Yeah, all hell will break lose if she does see it. But when Aoki returns the assignments, his slip of tongue causes him to mention about Rin’s guardian. Rin is devastated and ever since then, Rin becomes dejected. Even at the school pool, Rin coldly ignores Aoki even if he’s trying his best to apologize. So much so Aoki went to Kuro and Mimi for help but Kuro is being sarcastic as usual. She indirectly indicates the reason why Rin is acting so is because she loves him. Aoki is left wondering what she meant. With that, Aoki decides to visit Rin’s home. At the doorstep, he is being greeted by a suspicious Reiji who eventually lets him in. At that time, Rin isn’t back yet. Aoki is surprised to find that only Rin and Reiji lived together alone in this house. As they both chat, Rin comes home and is surprised to see Aoki there. Aoki leaves after seeing and being assured of their fine relationship. Rin asks what Aoki had said about her and Reiji replied exactly as Aoki describes her. Feeling that Aoki sees her as important, Rin swiftly steals Aoki’s first kiss at school as a thank you and with that, their relationship is back to normal. Only thing is, Aoki may not be too happy that his first kiss went to a student lolicon of his.
 
I’m sure every kid looks forward to summer vacations. But not Rin. Why? In episode 5, with the upcoming summer break, she won’t get a chance to see Aoki. Ah, I see. However, Aoki will still be in school to take care of the pools. Thus desperate Rin did an unthinkable act. Yeah, she jumps on top of Aoki’s head and covers it with her skirt! Extreme! During the holidays, Rin missed Aoki and though Reiji apologizes he has to work, he notices Rin not being true to her feelings because she mentions how she doesn’t mind Reiji not being able to take Rin out. So Rin and her pals decide to pay Aoki a visit at the school pool in their swimsuits but Rin spots Houin trying to get close to Aoki. Rin must be feeling jealous that she now has a rival. Later when Mimi and Kuro went along with their respective families for vacation, Rin is left all alone and decides to go to school to see Aoki after feeling bored. Again, she finds Houin conversing with Aoki about wanting to watch the fireworks together. Aoki then cuts off Houin again when he spots Rin from above the classroom and rushes there. After the usual teasing and all that, Aoki asks why she came to school and Rin mentions about the promise made before. Before Aoki knows it, Rin teasingly pushes Aoki into the pool. Rin too jumps in and hugs Aoki. So as they watch the fireworks display from the pool, Rin notices Houin watching them so she uses some seductive move on Aoki to make Houin feel jealous. After Aoki brings Rin home, Reiji arrives home late to find a note on the table. So the rest of the summer days sees Rin, Kuro and Mimi deciding to sunbath in their bikinis at school, much to Aoki’s surprise. Well, Rin’s reason is so that he won’t cheat on her. Trying to think 1 step ahead?
 
Episode 6 focuses on Reiji’s flashback. In short, he comes from a broken home. His dad was abusive and gets mad about the slightest thing while his mom never stood up for him. So when they both died in an accident, Reiji never shed tears for them. Furthermore, he sensed that the other relatives just want him to go away. So he ended up living with his cousin, Aki, who is a single parent. Back then, Reiji was quite bitter of his life and wouldn’t open up. So he was in a dilemma and confused over Aki’s generosity, hospitality and kindness. Also back then, Rin was really cute and adorable. As time goes by, Reiji slowly learns to accept them and even grows to love Aki. He learned Aki was strong-willed and when she was pregnant with Rin, the father wanted to abort her but Aki didn’t and chose to keep and raise her. Though Aki suggests to adopt Reiji, he refused. Because his love for Aki grew each day, he decided that he would marry her and wished he grow up into an adult fast. However, Reiji soon found out that Aki is sick and tried several jobs to help pay the bills. But her illness worsened. Aki knew her days were numbered so one evening on the beach, she told Reiji to take care of Rin as she finds that they both got along with each other well. Reiji hugs her and promises to protect them both. I’m not sure about incest but one night as the duo were really getting intimate with each other, Reiji discovers that she is suffering from an advanced lung cancer and to his horror, Aki became hospitalized and ever since, Reiji became depressed. Rin on the other hand is still unaware of what is really going on. While Reiji is in deep thought, Rin is making some paper cranes and she shocks Reiji by asking if Aki is going to die. Reiji instantly hugs her and assures Rin that Aki is going to get better. Thus Rin continued to make many paper cranes until Aki recovers. One night Reiji returns to find Rin in shock mode and that Aki has passed away and a letter of apology for her death. Back in present time, Reiji and Rin visits the beach where the trio once spend time together. It does bring back nostalgic memories. Because of this, Reiji vows not to let anyone hurt Rin. This episode was a really touching one and it makes me understand and appreciate things in life.
 
Episode 7 begins with Rin trying to think of ways to seduce Aoki in her room. Yeah, she’s practicing it with her stuffed teddy bear. But this episode has the kindergarten kiddies having a field trip to the mountains. Mimi notices Rin and Kuro having devilish intentions of playing mischievous pranks on Aoki. The terrible twins are back in action. Like on the train, Rin got too close to Aoki and because Kuro made some noise, the other passengers mistakes him for a paedophile! The gang finally reaches their destination and they have to hike to their cabins in groups. Rin and Kuro rushes off after being scolded by Aoki for lagging behind while Mimi needs to relieve herself. Aoki is really in a pinch. But he manages to arrive in time as he carries the trio and rushes there. Kuro thinks she’s going on some sort of vacation and has several huge luggage in which Aoki rejects them. Night time, the brats are at the hotspring and notices how big Houin’s boobs are and decides to take off and have their own fun. Meanwhile, Aoki is chiding several boys with perverted intentions (kids these days, is this natural or what?) when he notices the 3 little girls behind some door. As he chases them out, Mimi trips and Aoki’s towel came off. Argh!!! She saw something she wasn’t supposed to. It’s sleeping time and Aoki does his rounds to ensure the kids are in bed. Surprisingly, some of them are reading porn magazines and others doing some sacrificial black magic thingy. What’s wrong with these kids?! Finally Aoki dreads the last cabin because it’s where Rin and co are but surprisingly finds them asleep. As he walks back out, he got into Kuro’s trap. This is some revenge for not giving her luggage. Aoki notices Rin not at her bed but Kuro has Aoki let him sing her to sleep and uses this chance to keep him here. Unfortunately, even if Aoki singing is that bad, Kuro soon fell asleep. Aoki retires back to his cabin and surprisingly finds Rin sleeping on his bed. Not only that, Houin is at the door. Can’t let her find out or else further misunderstanding will arise. But Houin just says how glad she is being there for him and rushes off. I think she has no guts to confess just yet. Rin is now fully awaken and continues to harass Aoki. But no midnight romp here. Due to last night’s misadventure, Aoki and Rin are dead tired and sleeps throughout the day underneath a tree. Kuro and Mimi spots them and not wanting to be left out, joins in too. Later in the evening as Houin goes to get them, they wake up to find Aoki’s pants soiled because of the brats’ drooling saliva while they were sleeping. Yeah, that disturbing moment looked like the aftermath of some porn scene, if you know what I mean. Of course it’s a misunderstanding but you know those brats lah… They might even ‘upgrade’ his status…
 
Because of Shirai’s statement that males and females should avoid any skin contact, in episode 8, Aoki coldly ignores Rin and due to the fact that there is some truth in the harassment he receives from Rin. Another reason why Shirai has become more serious is that an ex-teacher colleague, Nogi, will be visiting them. She was the one who thought Rin back in Grade 1. Rin is jealous to see Aoki playing football with the boys and gets an idea. She calls Kuro and Mimi to her house and to their surprise, Rin cross-dressed as a boy. Unrecognizable. I wonder how Rin manages to keep all her hair underneath her disguise. Kuro is darn excited and happily agrees to make-up Rin even further. If only Rin was a boy, now it would be perfect for Kuro. A little flashback on how Rin and Kuro met. Back then, Rin was reeling from shock of her mom’s demise, her eyes were ‘lifeless’ and couldn’t speak a word. Kuro then accidentally found out about Rin’s mom and decides that Rin be her doll so that she could play dress up on her. While dressing her up, Rin said a word "Mother", which prompts Kuro to tell their then homeroom teacher, Nogi, all about it. Since then, they have been inseparable friends. Back in present, Nogi has visited the school and leaves after chatting with her ex-colleagues. Aoki gets some insight from Nogi about how a child needs to be hug and such. With that, Aoki tries to get Rin’s attention the next day but was snubbed instead. The following day, Rin cross-dresses as a boy with the help of her pals and gives them a little peck as appreciation. Kuro must be over the top. Rin manages to play with Aoki in a football game but when Aoki gets too close in contact, Rin starts to feel uncomfortable. Aoki intends to take of Rin’s shirt after being dirtied during the play (nothing hentai lah!). But Rin ran away. After Houin points out that there’s no such boy in her class, it dawned to Aoki that ‘he’ may be Rin. True enough, Rin exposes her identity. She explains why she did this and Aoki felt guilty and allows Rin to punish him in anyway she likes. Unexpectedly, Rin slaps him but quickly burst into tears soon after. As she hugs him, she tells him not to ignore her. Aoki remembers Nogi’s words as he comforts her. Back home, Reiji notices that Rin has been crying. Though Reiji thinks he can’t leave Rin alone just yet, Rin snuggles close into Reiji’s arms but in her dreams, she’s actually hugging Aoki.
 
After Shirai tells Aoki how soft he is with those kids, in episode 9, Aoki decides to be more assertive and strict. This however doesn’t make Rin too happy. This is made worse when Rin eavesdrop that Houin has invited Aoki for a meal at a restaurant. So young also know how to feel jealous. So the next day, Rin plays a prank on Aoki by tying his necktie to the window barrier and at the same time tell her other classmates to run and escape from class while Rin herself dangerously slide down the building after her suggestion for Aoki to take her to a restaurant is being turned down. The knot must be real tight. Eventually, Shirai calls Reiji to school to discuss about Rin’s behaviour, in which Reiji mentions about the teacher at fault. This in turn leads to Shirai blaming Aoki for what has happened. As Aoki returns home, he became sick. Due to that, Shirai temporarily takes over Aoki’s class. They must be regretting putting Aoki out of commission indirectly because Shirai’s class is so strict and no fun. Better listen to this scary woman if they don’t want anything bad to happen. Because of that, several boys blame Rin for her actions which causes her to run out from the class. Later, Rin, Kuro and Mimi decides to visit Aoki. The trio decides to help clean up his messy place and Rin seems to throw away stuffs which are deemed useless to her. Kuro then decides to leave Rin and Aoki alone together as the former takes Mimi out. Is she okay with this? Well, so long as Rin is happy, Kuro doesn’t mind. A little chat which made Rin feel better. The doorbell rang and Rin thinks it’s her pals but to her surprise, finds Houin instead. Houin then decides to cook a proper meal after seeing how the girls fed Aoki snacks. Not good for health or those recovering. After that, Houin decides to bring the girls back but Houin’s statement about the girls being just kids affected Rin. Rin thinks that at this rate, Aoki may see her just as a child. The next day Aoki has recovered and everyone including Shirai is happy to welcome him back. Now those kids will learn to count their blessings. But the episode ends on a grim note. Later that evening as Houin is standing at the stairways, she thinks she has forgotten something. Rin is standing beside her and has a scary look on her face. This scary look isn’t the funny kind of look. And suddenly… OMG! Rin pushes Houin down the stairways! Oh no! Has she turned into a child killer?!
 
Apparently not. That was just Rin’s imagination of what she would really like to do. So in episode 10, she just let Houin go. This episode sees Rin and her pals cross-dressing in each other’s dress. So much so, Aoki became confused when Mimi comes confessing her love to him. Actually, it’s Rin in disguise as Mimi. Of course it didn’t turn out the way Rin hoped for and she runs away disappointed. The 3 girls are on their way home and to their surprise spots Reiji, who takes them out for a meal at a restaurant. From the looks of it, Mimi seems to take a liking for Reiji. During the meal, Reiji mentions how he is going to work and come home late but Rin says it’s okay. Next day at school, Rin got a little injured while watching the solar eclipse so Aoki takes her to the infirmary. There, Rin tries to pester Aoki to go on a date with her but the latter still adamant on refusing it and that she’s still a kid. Rin tries some seductive move and wants Aoki to look at her as a woman but Aoki looked away. Rin must be desperate. Due to that, Rin becomes depressed. Kuro and Mimi went to find some answers from Aoki. Seeing that he needs to be more assertive, Aoki raises his voice and tells them to go back to class. Mimi then starts shivering and painful memories of Nakamura came rushing back. Mimi runs out and Aoki realizes his mistake. He thought Mimi’s scars were healed but it wasn’t so. Later at the park, Houin came to console Aoki, who thinks he has not have enough experience with woman after going through Rin’s case. Looks like an unofficial date. Because of Houin’s words, at 1 point, Aoki seems to see Houin a little attractive but was interrupted by an SMS from Rin. Aoki rushes to Rin’s home thinking something may be wrong but it’s just one of her usual whims. But Aoki just left without saying anything. Rin in a way felt happy because he came for her. As Aoki rides a train home, he ponders why he couldn’t get angry with Rin. Aoki concludes that he is afraid of her. Next day at school, Aoki notices Rin is depressed and later Houin finds Rin sitting dejectedly on the stairs. Thinking that Rin got into a fight with her friends, Houin consoles Rin and provide some advice like the need to be kind to oneself first. With that, Rin gets her confidence back and rushes off while thanking her. Who would know her romantic rival was the one which provided her a guiding path. A person she least expected from. Rin spots Aoki sleeping in the classroom and puts a coat over him before leaving.
 
Episode 11 begins with Reiji having a nightmare. A young Reiji is using a knife to stab his parents who aren’t listening to his voice. The school is having a dodgeball tournament and it seems Houin is so into it (partly due to yet another date failure with Aoki). Kuro notices Rin, Mimi and Aoki are seemingly depressed so she comes up with a plan. In the end, Houin’s class beats Aoki’s class for the title. Mimi tries to apologize to Aoki but because earlier on she learned some foul words from Kuro without knowing the meaning of it, Aoki is in a pinch. Yeah, Mimi thinks why Kuro’s words always make Aoki ‘happy’ and proceeds to learn it from Kuro, who seems to have a devilish idea of it. While Shirai notices Houin being overjoyed of her victory of Aoki, Shirai goes and tell Aoki of his duties to clean up the gym. Because Aoki’s students have already left, he has no choice but to clean it all up himself. As Aoki is putting back stuffs into the storeroom, Rin comes by, which surprises Aoki. She tells him Reiji is working late. Before they know it, somebody locks up the storeroom. So cliche. Chance for Rin to get horny… Or not. When Reiji comes home late, he finds that Rin isn’t home yet and starts to panic. In his frenzy, he searches throughout town for Rin, disregarding his safety. That train nearly hit him! Aoki could have made a call but he left his handphone in the teacher’s room. He notices Rin sneezing so they cuddle up close to each other for some warmth. Rin’s handphone then rings and a panicky Reiji is on the other line. Though Rin tells him where she is, the line isn’t stable and is soon cut off. Houin is preparing to leave but Shirai and Oyajima came rushing to her after receiving a phone call. As Rin wants Aoki to not leave her, Aoki assures her that he’ll always be there for her. The storeroom door then opens. Though everyone is relieved to see each other, but not Reiji. He has snapped and in his rage punches Aoki. He thinks Aoki may have done something to Rin. Reiji drags Rin away back home without wanting to listen to anyone’s explanation. Even Rin tried to explain but Reiji isn’t listening. Though Aoki wanted to go after them and clear things up, Shirai stops him and reminds him of his duties as a teacher not to only 1 student. Back home, Rin realizes her futile attempts to reason with Reiji. You know, Reiji is scary when he’s extra nice. Even if his voice sounds calming. Too calming. I think due to Reiji’s past and his inability to keep Aki’s promise, that poor guy finally snapped. Like a ticking time bomb that just exploded.
 
In episode 12, Rin has been absent from school since. Due to that, Aoki has been acting strange and Mimi and Kuro notices how Rin’s absence is affecting him and suspects something is wrong. Aoki then sends an SMS to Rin, which made the latter happy. It seems Reiji has taken Rin to an amusement park. Since Reiji has blamed his long working hours which in turn leads to Rin having some affair with her teacher, Reiji takes a break from his job to spend time with Rin. So when Rin gets the SMS from Aoki, he tells her to hand over her handphone. Rin becomes a good kid and has no choice but to do so. Though Reiji tells Rin to go for further rides, but all Rin wants is to go back to school, something which Reiji doesn’t agree upon. When they get home, Rin notices a mail in the box (placed by Aoki when he stopped by earlier on when nobody’s home) addressed to her and rushes into her room. She is happy to know that everyone in school is worried about her. Reiji once again have that recurring nightmare. The next morning after preparing breakfast, he tells Rin that he’s going out. Rin still wants to go to school but Reiji gives his usual answer and his expression is enough to instil some fear in that poor girl. Because he thinks that he is the only one capable of protecting Rin, Reiji locks Rin inside her room! He’s so unstable now. As Kuro and Mimi confronts Aoki about Rin, Aoki pats Kuro’s head because he believes they’re concern about Rin, which softens her heart. Yeah, she’s thinking that this virgin may not be so bad after all. On the other hand, Mimi thinks Aoki likes girls which are like Kuro. Soon Aoki receives word that Reiji will be meeting them at school. In short, Reiji is here to do transfer Rin to another school. Aoki asks if this is what Rin wishes but Reiji says an adult like him won’t understand. This prompt Reiji to realize that he is still a kid when Aoki says that he too is an adult. Aoki thinks that Reiji may still be a kid and wonders when he himself had turned into an adult. Reiji then quickly leaves.
 
Back home, Rin is making paper cranes when Reiji returns and tells her about her transfer. Rin is not happy that Reiji made that decision without her consent. Reiji then sees a pair of scissors in Rin’s hands and this led him to recall that nightmare. Only difference is, instead of him holding the knife, he saw Rin in place of him. Aoki has just arrived outside Rin’s doorstep when he hears Reiji scream. He rushes in to find Reiji unconscious. Did Rin stabbed him? No she didn’t. He just suddenly collapsed. No blood stains on the floor. Reiji dreams about Aki whereby he tells her about breaking his promise but Aki didn’t think so. As Reiji lies on the bed, Aoki talks to Rin and understands that she wants to go back to school but at the same time don’t want to leave Reiji as he is already hurt. But there are some things too that he can’t understand as all this while he has lived a normal life but he wishes to learn from them. As Rin accompanies Aoki to leave the house, we see Reiji opening his eyes. Looks like he has heard everything and perhaps his perception of Aoki changed for the better. Before Aoki leaves, for once Rin requested something normal, a handshake, which Aoki gladly obliges. Of course everything went back to normal the next day. Rin is back to her mischievous self with her pals, Reiji praying his respects to Aki, and Houin concludes Shirai a possibility as her other love rival for Aoki after thinking that it’s her way of showing her love to Aoki (being strict, that is). Rin had an indirect kiss with Aoki through the recorder and almost had an intimate one if not for Kuro’s flowery insults. I guess Mimi too is trying to improve her vocabulary. But Rin mentions that an indirect kiss is fine as the trio continue their pranks on Aoki. He has got to be a very patient man.
 
Prior the release of the tv series, there has been a 1 episode OVA release. I’m not sure of the timeline of where this OVA takes place but I’m sure it’s during Rin and the pals have Aoki as their teacher and Rin is still doing her seductive moves on him. But this OVA focuses more on the 3 girls and Aoki rarely makes his appearance. This episode also has more of those sexual innuendos and I feel it’s like to tantalize viewers of what is to come. Like some sort of sampling, huh? Here, the gang tries to shop for a present for Aoki. At the shopping centre, Mimi hears a couple of nasty ladies insulting her body. But Rin apologizes to them in a mature manner and leaves, putting shame on those grown ups. By the time they have found what they want, they ran out of money. They head back to Rin’s house and meets Reiji there. Mimi is surprised to see Reiji and Rin quite close together and that Rin doesn’t even mind Reiji looking even if she’s naked. But Reiji seems to be treating the girls quite nicely. From preparing their meals, to bath time and bed time. Some pondering here and there like how Rin really likes Aoki. Next day at school, the girls are going to give Aoki their present. Aoki receives an SMS from Rin to look outside the window. When he does saw the 3 girls below waving and a writing on the ground which says he is a lolicon lover. Rin starts a countdown as Aoki rushes down there. When he arrives, all in good timing, Rin jumps into his arms.
 
If you think that this whole series is filled with all those loli ecchiness from the start, then you are only half right. That’s because for those who have watched the tv series will definitely know that in each episode, there will be those annoying censors. Either the entire screen will be covered with some sort of screensaver which shows Rin juggling and ‘e’ logo with her feet or Reiji drinking or hitting the bottles or that yellow stuffed teddy bear smoking. WTF? Well, I guess it’s better than showing seemingly loli porn, right? Yup, so ecchi fans will be darn frustrated whenever this happens. Not only that, some of the unsuitable words are being beeped out and replaced with a duck quack are car horn (I found out Kuro’s calling of Aoki as a virgin is one of them). I agree it’s annoying when that happens but since they’re broadcasting it on national tv, it’s not really going to be suitable for younger audiences. Can’t have little children have a bad start and footing on sex education, can’t you? Or can they?
 
But don’t worry, those who really want to see all that loli ecchiness without those censors, they can go buy the uncensored DVD version. Feels like somewhat a marketing ploy. As for me, I have only watched the first 4 episodes uncensored and in my opinion, I don’t think they are as bad. I know you may think that I’ve seen too much of such shows that’s why I can handle the shock and that I’m a loli pervert. But even though I’m a ‘veteran’ such stuff don’t really turn me on and I’m just watching it for the hilarious comedy.
 
Because of the art, drawing and animation which has the girls looking cute, I’m sure this may appeal to younger audiences as well and that’s why the censors are necessary. The opening theme song sounds lively and generic and is entitled Retsu! Ohime-sama Dakko. It is sung by the seiyuus of the 3 little girls, Eri Kitamura, Kei Shindow and Mai Kadokawa. But the main ending theme song, Hanamaru Sensation, by Little Non, sounds like a little girl trying to sing out loud and fast. The song too is quite upbeat and feels like a dance song as we see the girls doing some wild handshaking dance of their own. I’m not sure about the lyrics because when I did some research of its translation, the sentences sounded like nonsense or maybe the translation was done in bad English. So much so, even if the song sounded naughty due to its upbeatness, I don’t really understand what the song is about. Other ending episode themes include episode 6’s slow and sad ballad Yasashii, by Chata, and the final episode’s Otome Chikku Shoshinsha Desu, also done by the seiyuus of the 3 little girls. The OVA itself has a different set of opening and ending theme but I can’t remember how they sound like ;p. There are some background music which have that fun feeling especially those string pieces.
 
The end of the tv series though it ended well, I’m wondering how would Rin and Aoki really end up in this awkward relationship. If they really become lovers and then get married, it’ll be like the case in Onegai Teacher and Oku-sama Wa Joshi Kousei. Only difference is, Rin will be more horny and there is a substantial age gap as compared with the other 2 series. Yeah, it was mind blowing when Rin once boldly told Aoki in his face "Let’s have sex, sensei!". Woah. But as mentioned, I think Aoki won’t let Rin influence him with all that naughty seduction of hers because he’s a good guy. Hey, doesn’t Aoki resembles quite closely to Ichimaru of Oku-sama Wa Joshi Kousei?
 
Hopefully, little children like Rin exists only in the animes. I know it’s good for kids to be positive, extrovert and energetic, but with this wide knowledge at this young age makes me feel like she’s a call girl in the making. Ah well, if she was a little older perhaps we would all have different views and perspectives of her then. But as for now, knowing she has such capability is highly disturbing. IS THIS THE KIND OF CHILDREN THAT WE WANT FOR OUR FUTURE???!!!
 
Kodomo No Jikan

Minna Ga Ii Ne

September 26, 2008

  Kawara no shamen nekoronda,
  Teashi wo nobashite,
  Atama no ue wo,
  Tori-tachi ga tobidatta
 
Another one of those nostalgic anime songs which I recently had the mood to belt out again. Taken from the anime series Boys Be, this is one of the several few anime songs that I really liked in an instant when I first heard it. For those who have watched the series, you’ll know which of the songs I’m talking about. Yup, it’s the ending theme entitled Minna Ga Ii Ne.
 
  Futo miageta kyou no sora,
  Doko made mo hirogaru,
  Donna yuutsu na koto demo,
  Chiisaku omoeru yo
 
Depends on how you want to translate the title of the song, it could mean ‘Everything is all right’ or ‘Everyone is all right’. Perhaps, you could even say that ‘Everything is wonderful’. The word ‘Minna’ and ‘Ii’ in Japanese can have a wide meaning and usage. Thus ‘Minna’ can mean everything or everyone (to my knowledge, it is more inclined to the latter) likewise ‘Ii’ can mean good, okay or all right. Quite versatile, don’t you think so?
 
  Riyuu nanka nakute
  Suki na uta kuchidzusandetari,
  Sonna toki ga ichiban,
  Kimochi ga ii ne
 
Of course one reason you might have guessed why there was a long lapse in time for me to sing again this wonderful song was not because I became bored of it, but rather there was no karaoke or even an instrumental version of it. Not that I can find it now and then. As usual, to help ‘cure’ my addiction to this song, I have to do a duet with the singer of the song herself, the one and only Aki Maeda. And if there was a karaoke version, I feel that I can do well for this piece. Yeah, I feel that I can sound as close as her. This piece doesn’t require me to do the impossible like straining my vocal chords, scream for the top of my voice, nor does it make me go out of breath. How I wish most of the other songs were like this.
 
  Itsuka konna hi mo,
  Owattari shite shimau no ka na,
  Zutto tanoshii hibi ga,
  Tsudzukeba ii no ni
 
One thing real nice about this pop music is the solo part, whereby the violin play is swift and creative. I can never get enough of this part. There are some cool guitar strummings in the background too, but it isn’t that obvious. But the strings play the main role here, especially in-between the verses and chorus, albeit not during the verses. Nevertheless, with all the other music instruments coming in, the whole song sounds great.
 
  Riyuu nanka nakute,
  Isshou nara ureshiku nattari,
  Sonna toki ga ichiban,
  Minna ga ii ne
 
And after all that lively music and strings, the song finally ends with a nice acoustic guitar strum. Hmm… I kinda notice that there is almost an overlap voice at the last two chorus (meaning before the second chorus could end, the singer starts singing the lines of another chorus). When I initially first sang this song, I usually fumbled this part as the transition is a little too quick and since the real song itself is totally void of any background vocals. Also, since it was sang in such a way that those 2 lines became 1 long sentence, without proper timing, I find myself out of breath back then. But after a while, I have mastered this part and now it isn’t a problem anymore. Hehehe… Isn’t everything so wonderful?
 
   Minna ga ii ne… 
 
Boys Be

Raimuiro Senkitan

September 20, 2008

I’m actually not fond of anime with historical elements. In addition, history isn’t my strongest subject during my schooling years either. So what prompted me to watch Raimuiro Senkitan, or also known as Lime-iro Senkitan? Simple. At first glance those ladies in white sleeveless military uniform looked so gorgeous. That’s it? Yeah, that’s it. Not to say that I have a fetish for such women in uniform, but I guess if you know me, I’ll almost watch any harem animes if I think it’s worth a watch.
 
Furthermore, in addition to being a historical theme, there are some mecha elements as well. I know that after researching that this anime has 2 most disliked elements in my books, it would be enough to turn me off but my curiosity kept swelling up because of the ladies in uniform. Pfft. And I can’t believe that was the reason which made me sit through 13 episodes of it.
 
So the setting takes place in the 37th year of the Meiji era. Not that I know or care what important events happened during that time. Besides, when is the Meiji era in the first place? Not that I know, care or decide to do some research but conveniently mentioned in the series’ synopsis that was around 1904. I know there was a war going on between Japan and Russia but what for? Don’t know. Don’t care. Ah, my tidak apa attitude. Also, both sides are fighting for the possession of a fort called Lushun or Port Arthur. I’m not sure why that piece of rocky place is such a hot tussle between the 2 sides, but it was enough to make them go an all out war against each other.
 
After all that narration of a little history in every beginning of each episode, we are told that there is an untold story (sort of. Or probably it was just made up. Of course lah!) that how a group of 5 young lady defenders and this is their story of their love and inspiration and 1 young man who guided them. Probably this is the only part I understood, in the sense that a harem lover like me look forward to.
 
In episode 1, we are introduced to that young man, Shintaro Umakai, an ex-Russian diplomat and currently transferred to some rural area to be a teacher at Amanohara Girl’s Academy. Along the way (probably he got lost), he meets 5 young ladies who will in turn be under his guidance. They are the child-like always-trippin’ onii-chan complex panty showing (read: for fanservice) Momen Sanada (urm… her uniform reminds me of Pia Carrot too…), vain and having taste for Western stuff (though they’re all fakes) Sarasa Honda who has a dog called Antoinette Gandhi the 13th which resembles Marmaduke (since its name is quite long, the rest took the liberty to shorten it to Anji), a quiet Kikyo-look-alike dressed like a Hina doll Rinzu Kuroda, petite ‘tough’ tomboy Asa Kato, and her miko priestess dressing ‘slow’ cry-baby pal who is into strawdolls voodoo Kinu Fukushima. Also along the way, Shintaro meets a bearded man named Hyogo Kaji and in the turn of events, he turned out to be the headmaster of the school in which Shintaro will be teaching at. To Shintaro’s surprise he finds that the school is underground. Well, anyone would be shocked to find the ground opening up, right?
 
As Shintaro familiarizes with his surroundings, he gets to find out that these 5 girls are also part of an army unit called Raimu unit. You see, they aren’t ordinary girls. They have some spiritual power called Konjiki and are able to summon some spiritual mecha called Raimu. Now, these Raimus aren’t the best looking mechas in the mecha genre. They look like some ice hockey clad players or some Bushido/Kendo warriors. Either way, they look horrible! So what does Shintaro has to do with all these? Kaji did mention that the girls wanted to have a ‘normal; life, meaning that they wanted to attend school like other normal girls. Anyway, Shintaro also meets the Lt Commander, Masanosuke Date, who is also the one leading the Raimu unit. Before Shintaro can digest things, an attack occurs. Shintaro is surprised to find that Amanohara is actually a battleship! And Kaji is the general in command of it.
 
Date and the girls are geared up for the fight as Shintaro witness first hand of them in action. Even the enemy Raimus are totally horrible in design. One thing I would like to mention is that I kinda notice that when the girls summon their Raimus, it’s like they need to say a standard systematic line as they unleash their Konjiki. Then when they are using their controlling their Raimu to counter attack the enemy, they have to stand at their designated spots on top of the Amanohara ship and do some action which will translate into what their Raimus will do. Reminds me of Dance Dance Revolution, if you know what I mean. Are they dancing or what? Then Date is like giving commands to the girls like as though he is a conductor of an orchestra. I wonder why they need to hear his orders even if the counter attack is straightforward and simple. Not only that, the girls will have to be in their white uniforms to do so. This consolidates my theory that a uniform gives superhero characters super power. That’s why they have to change into it, no matter how out of place it looks. Also there’s this redundant part which made me go "What are they here for anyway?". Yup, those are the other foot soldiers trying to shoot down the enemy Raimus. Their bullets are like doing no damage to the enemy and their presence are more of a hindrance then anything. Is it so that the girls won’t feel lonely that they are fighting themselves. Anyhow, I find that these soldiers are weak…
 
Thus in episode 2 we see the girls manage to make the enemy retreat. So Shintaro has to continue his duties as a teacher while he tries to understand that these girls are being young soldiers. Shintaro decides to give them a test to gauge their level. Of course Momen seems the kind to lack brains and makes a paper crane out of it. I know Shintaro resembles Momen’s beloved brother very much but calling him onii-chan instead of sensei like the rest. I also kinda noticed that cry-baby Kinu is so weak that whenever Asa scolds her a little bit, she starts crying out loud. We are also introduced to the physician and ‘school nurse’, Sumi Ichijouji, who seems to like to flirt with Shintaro. Other developments in this episode sees Shintaro having a chat with Date about the girls at night on top of Amanohara. The next day as Shintaro is giving his usual lessons, the enemy returns and starts attacking. The usual ensemble. As the Raimu units is taking on the enemy, 3 little Shikigamis decide to bring Shintaro to where the supposedly ‘power source of Amanohara’ is sleeping, Kuki. Over the series, I find that this 3 little Shikigamis are kinda annoying. Probably it’s because they are little kids but since they’re so klutzy and forgetful, you’ll wonder what good they will contribute and are more comical of nature. Anyway the trio brings him there and tells him to awake her. How? I’m not sure if Shintaro understands what is happening all this while or is his body just taking over and moving by himself. Shintaro goes on top of Kuki and kisses her. Just like Sleeping Beauty waking up from her deep slumber. With that, Amanohara powers up and starts flying! Woah! A flying battleship! Now this didn’t really happen in history, right? Once again, they manage to fend off their attackers but one of the enemy’s Raimu attacks an off-guard Sarasa. Date dashes to save her by pushing the evil Raimu away. However, Date fell off the ship and to his death. Before he dies, he tells Shintaro to take care of the girls. Everyone can only watch in horror. At first, based on my experience that anime characters like Date don’t actually die and will come back alive later, I was wrong. Date did die and will make his appearance only through dreams.
 
So in episode 3, due to Date’s demise, Kaji decides to make Shintaro the leader of the Raimu unit. First practice with them turn out to be disastrous. Can’t be an orchestra conductor, can’t he? Oh great, now this teacher has to carry a burden as soldier now. But I guess Shintaro has no choice since he is partly responsible for his students. The girls too aren’t over Date’s death though some of them are more welcome to have Shintaro as their new Raimu leader and some like Asa don’t really accept and agree to it. You can see this Asa girl has a crush on Date from the flashbacks she has. Because she thinks Shintaro isn’t up to mark, she decides to train him up. This causes Sumi to mistake that Shintaro is having some affair with Asa. Rumour spreads and the other girls start giving Shintaro that stare and thinks he’s a pervert. Even cheeky Kuki told him that if he was so active, he should share some with her. Hahaha. Anyway, Kinu becomes desperate and tells Shintaro to ‘take her body’ instead because she fears that if Asa were to leave her, she’d be alone because nobody wants to be friends with a slow girl like her. Of course Asa comes in, sees Kinu on top of Shintaro, another misunderstanding arises. She thinks Shintaro can’t live up to Date’s expectations. Before anything can happen, the enemy once again attacks and the girls go into their usual gear. But this time, Shintaro leads them. As expected, they emerge victorious and because of Shintaro’s guidance, Asa has a more favourable view of him now.
 
In each episode, it will follow this sort of pattern. Shintaro and the girls will do something which will make them bond closer, and there are some episodes which will be focused more on a particular girl. Then the enemy attacks, the girls change and summon their Raimu and fight back. Though as the series progresses, you’ll find that they don’t have to stand at the same position on the ship and can summon their Raimus anywhere. Furthermore, the girls’ Raimu will have a chance to power up, thus changing their Raimu into a more powerful and better looking one, but still look horrible nevertheless. After a short fight, the girls will emerge victorious and all ends well. As time goes by, you’ll find that the girls love their sensei so much that they even have horny fantasies of doing it with him… Ah well, what more could you expect from an ecchi anime genre as well. Each episode too has that panty showing fanservice though most of them comes from Momen’s tripping. That girl can trip even if there’s nothing at her feet. It’s like as though she’s doing it on purpose.
 
Episode 4 focuses more on Sarasa. When her expensive (but fake) watch goes missing, she decides to play detective. I don’t know where she got the idea of dressing in a traditional Scottish kilt as a detective outfit. Scotland Yard, perhaps? Anyway as she goes along with her investigations with Anji, she suspects Rinzu because she was the person seen leaving the bathroom where Sarasa was taking her bath and left her precious watch. Since Rinzu is too quiet, Sarasa suspects her even more. A tussle between the 2 which eventually breaks Rinzu’s precious mirror. Sarasa thinks it’s not her fault as Shintaro tries to mediate the situation. Then, one of the enemies, Raxa, comes out with a scheme to draw the Raimu unit out. Sarasa spots a light flicker across the land and notices it is the enemy’s Raimu and decides to chase it with Shintaro. They fell right into Raxa’s trap as she starts attacking them. With some comforting words from Shintaro, Sarasa realize and soon the other girls come to their aid. In the end, it is revealed that the culprit who stole Sarasa’s watch was Anji. Yeah, that dog seems to love collecting ‘junk’ and bury it somewhere. Something Sarasa would least expect and right under her nose. After this, Sarasa and Rinzu become close friends. Okay, sometimes best of rivals, when it comes to Shintaro that is.
 
Episode 5 is more on Momen and her ‘other homeland’. Momen gets that nostalgic feeling when she was doing some waitress job back in some little town but is always clumsy and breaking things. However, her onii-chan was always by her side. I guess she was sleep walking and talking so much so she ended up on top of Shintaro in her undies. Yeah, Sumi even thinks of putting herself on top for a change… Since Amanohara is undergoing some repairs and is docked near Momen’s homeland, Shintaro takes this opportunity to trek the mountains with the girls. Momen takes the opportunity to lead the girls but the journey seems to be like walking through caves and riding the swift rivers with a raft. Though Momen is enjoying the moment, can’t say the same for the others. Meanwhile, Raxa and her other 2 accomplices, taciturn Veludo and childish Satin are watching the girls. Finally the girls reached the top of the mountain and Momen’s homeland is just below. When Momen went to gather some mushrooms, the other girls tell Shintaro about their frustrations about Momen. Since she overheard their conversation, she is heartbroken, though Shintaro tries to reason with them that Momen’s intentions aren’t bad. Momen runs away and spots her real onii-chan playing with a bunch of kids. He’s still having positive thoughts on Momen. Shintaro then finds Momen and with his comforting words of guidance, Momen is back to her happy self. Just then, Raxa and co launches another Raimu attack. But we all know how it will all end right? Momen is even more determined, powers up, and with the other girls’ help, notches up another victory. In the end, everyone is fine with Momen as the latter acknowledges that Amanohara is her other homeland.
 
Episode 6 is a peaceful day off. Meaning everybody takes a break from fighting and make peace. WTF?! Then what in the world is the fighting for? It’s like they be friends for 1 day and then the next day the rivalry continues. It’s making a mockery out of this day and yet redundant. So more fanservice here as we get to see the girls in their swimsuits. Shintaro having numerous nosebleeds… Meanwhile, we see a shadowy figure telling Raxa, Veludo and Satin to have their day off. Even baddies can have their day off. Okay, let me just get to the spoilers here. This guy is the leader of the Russian Spiritual Corps, Grigory Rasputin (not sure if he has any relation to that mad monk of Russia or the real person himself). As far as I remember, he’s that typical take-over-the-world maniac who wants to make Russia eternal. Furthermore, he doesn’t make upfront appearances till the last few episodes of the series. Now that’s a long time for a main villain to make his appearance. We also see how Raxa and Satin are indebted to Rasputin because he saved them from impending doom. Plus, he seems cool because he can fly! What more do you want to believe in girls? At least the flashbacks are short rather than lasting for 1 whole episode. Back to our heroes. They spend the whole day trekking through the woods, had some wholesome dinner, soak themselves in a hotspring and discuss how they love their sensei so shamelessly (physically of course). I guess it’s a mixed bath area. Shintaro also tells them that when he was a diplomat at Russia, he had a fiancee named Sophia (actually he didn’t tell them her name but I thought it would be easier if I blog it an episode earlier…). But due to their different country background and current political situation, Shintaro chose his country and decides to go back. And I thought love knows no barriers… But I suppose there’s a good reason why he did so, though he wishes he could go back there again once all this is over as he still loves her.
 
Speaking of which, Amanohara unexpectedly picks up an unconscious Sophia in episode 7. Meanwhile at class, Sarasa and Asa are arguing with each other to see who could be class president. I’m not sure if there’s any differences but Shintaro makes Sarasa the head of class while Asa the class president and tells them to take turns giving orders. Soon Shintaro visits Sophia still unconscious lying on her bed. Momen gets news that this woman is Shintaro’s friend and the rest wonders if she’s a spy. Sarasa is jealous because she heard Sophia is a beautiful person. But when Sophia finally wakes up, she’s so happy to see Shintaro but it really bugs me that she’s acting like a little child! It’s so different from the Sophia in Shintaro’s flashbacks. She even wants Shintaro to come play with her (nothing hentai or dirty though). Maybe she’s in some sort of trauma. So the gang decides to make paper cranes for her so that Sophia could recover. Except for Sarasa who is still jealous but decides to make them in secrecy. Meanwhile Kuki detects some evil presence on Amanohara but is unable to pinpoint its exact source. My guess it will be Sophia but who would suspect a playful child-like mentality lady. Furthermore, Kuki analyzes Sophia and concludes that she is sick for real. As Amanohara is entering a storm, Kaji has the girls on standby since he’s predicting the enemy will use this to their advantage to launch an attack. Sophia then dangerously got on top of Amanohara (what happened to her supervision?) and thinks it’s all fun and games when the enemy Raimu attacks her. Of course the girls manage to summon theirs in time to fend off the menace. In the end, Sarasa realized that she was jealous of Sophia but after seeing how Shintaro protected her with his life, Sarasa even confessed straight to his face that she’s more in love with him ever. Well, Shintaro doesn’t seem that all surprised. Probably he thinks it’s one of those teacher-student kinda love. Back in Sophia’s room, she is having fun and laughing by tearing up the paper cranes.
 
I see dead people. Well, Kinu has that ability. It all started in episode 8 when Momen cooked up some curry by blindly following its recipe: bats, stewed newts, spider webs, worms, boiled nail dirt… You get the idea. Poor Anji. He became the 1st victim (though Kinu barged in to warn them not to eat the curry) but saved the other girls from suffering the same fate. So how did Kinu know about not eating the curry. Well, there are voices which tells her. Getting creepy here. So over the next few scenes, we’ll see this spiritual voice guiding Kinu and the rest to each of their room and pointing out several stuff like Momen’s closet overstuffed with onigiri, and bones which Anji collected in Sarasa’s real vase (I guess it’s the only thing which isn’t fake). Shintaro then has an idea and wants Kinu to help talk to the spirits to see what is wrong with Sophia. Kinu reluctantly does but eventually screams in horror before collapsing. Shintaro feels regret that he pushed Kinu but when the latter awakens she tells him about her past how she became friends with Asa. Then the enemy attacks Amanohara. This time a renewed Kinu powers up and gives their enemies another round of consecutive defeat. I don’t know, using giant-sized strawdolls to defeat the enemy? Rasputin must be real tired of this trend of failure, huh? Ah well, there’re nobody else to do the job. Once it’s over, Kinu collapses as her power is unstable. Kuki then suggests Shintaro to lend her his powers to stop and control her Konjiki. The weird part is, Shintaro went on top of her and it’s like a mild hentai scene. How does this help in stabilizing her Konjiki? I don’t know, it all seems ambiguous and far fetched. I’m not sure if they did it, though ;P. Kinu is healed (meaning she can’t hear spirit voices anymore) and they both find themselves in bed together. But you know what is going to happen when the other girls come in and see what they are doing, right? Pervert!
 
In episode 9, Asa tries to find Shintaro for some training but finds Kuki on top of him instead. Wow! Is this for real? Kuki even asks Asa if she wants to join in but the latter is disgusted and leaves. Shintaro tries to go after her which prompts Kuki to ask him is that flat chest tomboy is more important than her. Since Shintaro is concerned about Asa, Kuki isn’t too please. Because of that, Kuki went missing and the gang are quite worried, especially those 3 little Shikigamis. Shintaro must be thinking about that incident. Sarasa then comes up with an idea to organize a ball so that this will attract Kuki’s attraction. More fanservice as we’ll see the girls changing into a ball gown. There’s a funny part in which the girls are fighting over each other who will dance with Shintaro. Looks like Kinu has become slyer and hammers a nail into their voodoo doll, paralyzing them. Such dirty trick. In the mean time, Asa still has uncertain feelings about comparing Shintaro with Date. But leave it to that teacher to say the right words to her. As expected, the mood is ruined when Satin gives them her warm welcome with their usual Raimu attack. I felt that all those ball preparations are for nothing. All destroyed within seconds. Shintaro dives to push Asa out of harm’s way, just like what Date did long time ago. Due to that, Shintaro fainted and this made Asa mad. With the help of the other girls, they send Satin flying away into the stars. When the gang goes back onboard Amanohara, they are surprised to find Kuki there. She explains that she went to the hotspring and had left a note to the 3 Shikigamis. The trio had a hard time recalling but manages to remember that paper with hard to read squiggly snake-like marks which they made into a paper plane and threw it to Sophia. Kuki then decides to punish them and also tell them that her writing is good handwriting. In the end, Asa thought she finally had another chance alone with Shintaro when the other girls jumped on him. Asa is pissed off and pushes them all away with her instant superhuman strength of love and declares that she loves him. I guess now it’s her timely turn to do so. I can safely say Asa is tsundere.
 
If you’re wondering why Rinzu is dressed like a Hina doll, episode 10’s flashback may provide some insights. We learn that Rinzu’s dad was a well known writer who put much emphasis on traditional values. They weren’t rich, though. Back then, her mom and elder sister died in an accident which led to Rinzu’s dad acting all weird. So he took extra care of Rinzu for fear of losing her. It’s like being overprotective akin to a trapped bird in a cage. Because of that, Rinzu felt she wasn’t allowed to go anywhere and when their house was engulfed in flames, she felt her late father had left her all alone. Till this day, Rinzu is traumatized by being left alone and due to this emotional instability, she decides to quit the Raimu unit. All in good timing, the enemy attacks Amanohara again but this time one of their attacks causes Rinzu’s room to be set aflame. While the other girls are fending off the enemy, tragic memories came flowing back into Rinzu’s mind and she thinks it’s all too painful to bear and decides to slit her throat. Luckily Shintaro manages to prevent him from doing so. Though Rinzu still wants to die, during the tussle she dropped a poem written by her dad. When Shintaro read it out loud, then it dawned to Rinzu that her dad didn’t abandoned her and that all this while she was in denial and wanted to forget such pain, that she started thinking he left her. Rinzu rejoins her Raimu unit and your guess is as good as mine of what happens next. In the aftermath, Rinzu has been freed from her past and soon casts away her birdcage she has always been holding into the ocean below.
 
In episode 11, Shintaro once again manages to make a decision which is acceptable to the girls when they are divided about having a fun-filled class or a serious one. In order to show their appreciation, the girls decided to hold a party for him (WTF? Naked apron?) and declare this day as his day-off. So the rest of the day sees Shintaro paying a visit to each of the girl’s room as they specially prepared him some entertainment. First, Shintaro attends Kinu’s voodoo strawdoll theatrical play. The play seems to suspiciously resemble some love story between Shintaro and Kinu. Because Kinu was a little rough, the voodoo strawdoll causes some pain for Shintaro. Yeah, "Hold me till I break!". Then he visited Asa. But the massage was more painful that soothing. Then he got pain in his ears when he heard Sarasa’s horrible out-of-tune violin rendition. Next, he took some traditional dance lessons from Rinzu but since she was too strict, it didn’t turn out too well. His day off seems to be more stressful than relaxing. Later Shintaro spots Momen taking care of Sophia. Soon he and Momen had a little chat but during the conversation, Shintaro felt something taking over his body and he felt horny… Uh huh. The same kind of feeling when Sophia went all over him at the beginning of this episode. Momen then decides to offer her body and we learn that where Momen comes from, she was some sort of a child prostitute too. Oh dear. Shintaro is trying to restrain himself when an attack occurs. Good timing for him to tell Momen to leave before he does something horny or worse on her. After the fight, we see a weird dream whereby Momen is being strangled by her onii-chan but Shintaro wakes up to an apologizing Momen. Since Momen was jealous that Shintaro loves Sophia more, Shintaro comforts her by saying that he loves them both equally as well as the other girls. I wonder will this line work if one has multiple girlfriend/boyfriend. The other girls who are eavesdropping outside, are touched by his words and we see a scheming look on Sophia’s face as she walks away.
 
Amanohara is approaching Lushun in episode 12 and we see that Sophia indeed is putting some mind control on Shintaro. Yeah, she’s doing some horny stuff on him. Furthermore, Shintaro has been possessed so much so he tries to kill Momen! He’s saying how in order to prevent her and the other girls from dying in the war, he will have to kill them first. Kaji, Sumi and the other girls tries to stop Shintaro but that guy is on a rampage and wounds Kaji. In order to stop him, an army commander decides to search and take Shintaro out but the Raimu unit opposes. They want some time to deal with him in which they agree. A short clip shows Rasputin from the smokes picking up Sophia. On top of Amanohara, everyone has got Shintaro surrounded. Sophia then appears and admits that she is the culprit by saying once the Raimu unit is eliminated, Shintaro will be all hers. Somehow Shintaro manages to snap out of it and doesn’t obey Sophia’s commands when she ordered him to kill the girls. Finally, the evil boss Rasputin makes his full body appearance. Yeah, a main villain only appearing at the end of the series? Kuki recognizes him and realized that he was the one who stole Sophia’s soul and infiltrated this ship. I guess Kuki’s power’s isn’t that great, huh? In addition, Sophia is Veludo. But I shall refer her as the former because it’s easier. Rasputin and Sophia flees not before blasting and damaging the Amanohara. As the Amanohara falls from the sky, Kaji and the other soldiers request Shintaro do give 1 last class for the girls. So the final class as Shintaro gives his thanks and conveys how the girls how grown and matured throughout this short time. Meanwhile Kaji is making a last ditch attempt by steering and crashing the Amanohara into the enemy’s cannons while Raxa and Satin attempts to stop his futile act. Brace for impact!
 
Episode 13 sees the Amanohara under constant heavy bombardment as it crashes into the cannons. They all survive thanks to Kuki’s powers. Funny part was the girls got their mouths in each other’s butt and when they started talking… Let’s just leave our wild imaginations there. Shintaro and the girls head out of the ship but Asa knocked Shintaro out for his safety, seeing that he can’t summon any Raimu they thought it might be better for him to stay put. Shintaro then had a dream whereby he meets Date who is giving him some advice. When he regains his consciousness, he rushes off to find the girls but encounters Sophia. Some dramatic talking like love, country and such. Not that I care. Sophia is still upset that Shintaro can be thinking of the girls at this time. She still thinks Shintaro belongs to her. Well, Momen show up in time to give their own ideas what she thinks of Shintaro. Yeah, he belongs to no one. So why was she ‘fighting’ over him then? As the other girls easily defeat Raxa and Satin, before Momen and Sophia could square off, the underground starts to cave in. As Sophia lay there injured, Rasputin appears. More rantings that I couldn’t really care of but it’s ironic that Shintaro lectures back to that megalomaniac about love. Yeah, Rasputin was using Sophia who was blinded by her love for Shintaro. Rasputin summons his Raimu and attacks Shintaro but Sophia uses her body to protect him. As Sophia breathes her last breath in Shintaro’s arms, she realized her wrongdoings as she passes away. The other girls soon show up and with their determination not to let their sensei be killed, the combined powers of their Raimus allowed them to defeat Rasputin. Rasputin still can’t believe his defeat when Shintaro tells him how a lonely man he is and that he did not know true love and only knows how to use it to his advantage. The funny part is when the cave starts to crumble, a piece of huge rock dropped so fast on Rasputin while he’s ranting, it reminded me of one of those American cartoons. In the aftermath of the war, Japan won the Lushun fort and everyone onboard Amanohara is glad that everyone is safe. Just as Kaji mentioned, peace is the best medicine even if it’s only a temporary one. Hey, I thought laughter is the best medicine. Lastly, the girls take this opportunity to confess aloud that they love Shintaro.
 
But it’s not over yet. Well, apart from the end narration saying how the war isn’t over, there are 2 OVA episodes entitled Raimuiro Senkitan: Nankoku Yume Roman (The South Island Dream Romance). It’s a continuation from the tv series and those who want to watch, it is best to watch the tv series first before continuing here. Or else, you won’t understand what is happening. Not to say that this OVA episode has lots of deep development, but I kinda feel it’s necessary as it answers several little questions after the end of the tv series.
 
OVA 1 is more light-hearted, ecchi and comical as we see the Amanohara docked on a nearby island which at the same time is preparing for some festival. So you’ll get to see the girls in their yukata and also their usual daydreaming fantasy of marrying Shintaro. Some of them are real horny… Like Rinzu’s… That must be some intensive all-night continuous marathon. Still waters run deep. After another wholesome meal, viewers are treated to more fanservice with the girls soaking in the hotspring (Sarasa is so unashamed of herself…) and later we see the girl sleeping in ‘unshameful’ positions. Hey, Kinu has a life-size strawdoll as her bolster. The next day the girls along with Sumi, Kuki and the 3 Shikigamis are dipping at a nearby swim in their swimsuits. Funny part is Kuki mention how useless Sumi’s boobs are and the latter thinks she’s jealous. In retaliation, Kuki pulled it… You’ll notice in this episode that when the 3 Shikigamis bear the brunt of unfortunate circumstances, in the aftermath, they’ll be seen floating face down in the river. At the river, Sumi decides to make things more interesting by telling the girls that there is a legend which says that if a boy and a girl confesses to each other in a certain temple, they’ll be together forever. Obviously that’s a lie but the young ‘uns took it too literally. As Shintaro is strolling along the beach, he finds a disturbing scene. Kinu is acting out her horny love scene with Shintaro with her strawdolls! Meanwhile Sarasa decides to prepare herself by choosing her winning ‘fight’ panties. Night falls and the girls are waiting at the temple when something fast zooms pass by them. As they chase after what they supposedly think is Shintaro, they are surprised to see each other. Kinu once again uses her dirty trick strawdoll paralyzing move on Asa. No more best friends, huh? And then later puts the strawdolls of the other girls like as though it’s like a barbeque stick! But soon they find out that it wasn’t Shintaro but Anji. Relieved or disappointed? When the gust of wind blows, Sarasa is horrified and disgusted to see the other girls cheating. Why? They’re not wearing any panties at all! Woah!!!
 
Back at the inn, Shintaro is being called by Sumi and Kuki into a room. When the Raimu girls return, they found out that the message that they left to the 3 Shikigamis to tell Shintaro to meet them at the temple, has been forgotten. Useless kids. Furthermore, they heard ambiguous sounds coming from the room and thinks the worse. "Oh boy, it’s so hard…". The girls bust in and yelled if he preferred old hags to them. But to their relief, they only see Sumi giving Kuki a back massage. Sumi mentions that they invited Shintaro for this but he refused and went somewhere else. Though the girls are relieved and prepares to leave, Sumi and Kuki couldn’t forgive them for calling them old hags and proceeds to give them their due punishment. Meanwhile Shintaro is seen standing on the beach thinking about his earlier conversation with Kaji about the girls being needed in the war. He’s in a dilemma because he doesn’t want the girls to fight. Shintaro is being watched from a travelling monk from afar. You’ll notice his presence and another girl who looks so much like Kinu, Tsumugi, who is also spying the Raimu girls from afar but too afraid to approach and join them.
 
OVA 2 concludes the adventures for our Raimu girls and sets the tone for its sequel. A sequel? But let’s not get that far yet. The gang continue their relaxation on the island with the girls drawing horrible impressions of Shintaro on the sand, only to be washed away by the waves. Meanwhile a ship is seen having the life force of its crew being sucked out by some mysterious woman. Back on shore, Tsumugi is still too shy on approaching the girls as she watches them have fun. Tsumugi even have thoughts that they might do something nasty to her if she joins them. Sumi cheekily thinks Shintaro should have enough little girls time and it’s time for him to spend time with an adult. The girls are jealous and soon strips themselves naked in order not to lose to her! Desperate case! Even Tsumugi is thinking of stripping but that travelling monk hits her head and drags her away. If you’re wondering what happened to Raxa and Satin, they’re now under the observation of Amanohara. Shintaro has been instructed to talk to them and get some answers of how Rasputin was able to create so many Raimus. So we see a little more flashback of Raxa and Satin who are still loyal to the recently departed Rasputin. As the girls shop in town what presents to get for Shintaro (eventually all had the same thinking of offering themselves. Horny girls!), the sky suddenly turns dark and several enemy Raimus appear and attack Amanohara. But they soon leave. Kuki thinks that what they’re searching for isn’t on board the ship. Eventually the enemy Raimus found Shintaro, Raxa and Satin. Raxa thinks it is Rasputin and is ready to go to it. However as the Raimu is preparing to blast her, Shintaro protects Raxa from it. Is Shintaro seriously trying to take on that enemy Raimu all by himself? But he has been knocked out by that mysterious woman, who seems to have Rasputin’s Egg. Well, that sceptre is the power source of how Rasputin created his many Raimus. So how did it ended up in this lady’s hand? Don’t know. Anyway, she continues to drain Shintaro’s life force with it. But when the other girls show up, she flees. Shintaro is in critical condition.
 
Back on Amanohara, Raxa explains the Egg which is a cursed item which sucks the souls out of others and makes it own powers. But back then Rasputin was sucking his own soul for his own ideals rather than taking souls from others. So there is only 1 way to save Shintaro. The girls combined their Konjiki powers to heal him. At the same time, enemy Raimus are attacking the ship so Raxa and Satin decides to buy time for the girls by putting up a temporary protective barrier. Because that mysterious lady used too much power from the Egg, her Raimus soon disappear and she decides to retreat for now. Partly we see Tsumugi helping out with the barrier too. Finally, Shintaro manages to wake up from his dream world (probably nearly crossing over to the after life). But because of that, the girls lose their Konjiki powers, which may never return. In the aftermath, Amanohara returns to some port after being repaired and Shintaro was transferred. Raxa and Satin are happily living together in some cottage. Shintaro narrates that the girls have been discharged from Amanohara since they can no longer summon their Raimus, he isn’t allowed to know what is going to happen to them. Shintaro then arrives at a building called Amanohara Jogakuin and he hears a familiar voice. Why, it’s Momen and the rest calling out to him. The gang are overjoyed as they hugged each other. I guess you could say that this was a blessing in disguise. Now they can go on with their normal lives with their favourite teacher. The travelling monk and Tsumugi watches them from behind as he tells Tsumugi that now it’s her turn to fight. Tsumugi agrees wholeheartedly.
 
Those who can’t get enough of this series will be happy to know that there is another 13 episode sequel called Raimuiro Ryuukitan X. New characters, new enemies, but same ol’ plot. Yeah, this time the war continued into the 38th year of the Meiji era. There are some retaining characters like Kuki, Kaji and Sumi, who are still on board the Amanohara. New characters include Major Gamou (who is that travelling priest), and a new bunch of villains called Fahren Knights led by a mysterious masked lady named Princess Fahren, in some Russian palace. She too has 3 new loyal underlings, which include that mysterious lady who appeared in the OVA (she seems more talkative and lively compared to the OVA).
 
At the start of this episode, we hear Kaji, Sumi, Kuki and Gamou, waiting for the arrival of a guy named Kyoushiro Inukai (looks like Kenichi from History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi), the new guy to lead the new Raimu unit. So now they’ve got a dog (inu) as previously a horse (uma), huh? Hehe, just kidding. Anyway this Kyoushiro guy is such a passionate guy and we see him running from who knows where, crossing streams, across the desert and jungle to Amanohara. It’s a long way so why didn’t he just take a plane, there? Working out the sweat? But whatever the reasons, this guy seems not to let anything stand between him and just ‘runs straight through’ everything. So while waiting for Kyoushiro to arrive, the 3 underlings of Fahren Knights attacks Amanohara.
 
Of course this episode also introduces the whole new Raimu unit. A new bunch of girls but somehow reminds me of the old Raimu unit. As we know Tsumugi Shima looks closely to Kinu and I think she’s going to play the ‘stand-out’ role just like Momen. The rest include clumsy ninja Kasuri Hattori, studious Nishiki Ii, some sort of magical nurse Aya Nabeshima, and a girl who speaks her lines from theatres and plays Shuro Naoe. This bunch of girls are similar to the old bunch in the sense that they have their own horny fantasies of the would-be new leader of the Raimu unit. Some things don’t change. But instead of Momen’s onii-chan complex, Tsumugi has goshuujin-sama (master) complex. Kasuri now takes over the role of tripping even if there’s nothing while Aya now concocts potion as oppose to Kinu’s voodoo strawdolls. Furthermore, the tomboyish-ness of Asa is now on Shuro and the smart intellect which was Rinzu is now Nishiki. Hey, the 3 little Shikigamis now has a giant amateur helper too. Thinking of flexing their authority?
 
As the Amanohara takes a beating, the girls are adamant that the new leader will come. And true enough he appears. With a new standard systematic line, they summon better looking Raimus now (even the enemy’s). Not only that, this passionate Kyoushiro combines himself with the girl’s Konjiki to became a new mecha, which he calls Lime! His Lime unleashes lots of those usual firepower you usually see in mecha series as he finally does his ultimate attack called Manly Attack (?!) to finish off their adversaries. Isn’t the outcome predictable too? As the girls rejoice of their victory, Kyoushiro passionate yells out how he’s going to crush the enemies. Now that’s a way to start things off.
 
I’m not sure about the time line of episode 2 whether it is before Kyoushiro knows he is the leader of the Raimu unit or after because this episode focuses more on him and Tsumugi. We see him getting real excited at the start after learning that he is the new leader of the Raimu unit so much so an army officer has to order his men to jump on him. But that didn’t deter him. Yeah, he gets out with his brute passionate strength. Because of this, that army officer wonders if he is really reliable. Meanwhile Gamou is seen in his travelling priest outfit along with Tsumugi. The former is going ahead first and tells her not to use her powers because she’s an apprentice. Along the way, Tsumugi fell off a cliff but luckily Kyoushiro is there to grab her, though they both fell into the shallow stream below. It seems the 2 knew each other when they were young. Kyoushiro left to be a soldier. Back in present time, Tsumugi gets some horny idea to strip herself by using that getting a cold for being soak excuse. Unfortunately (or thankfully), Kyoushiro isn’t a pervert so her attempts were futile. Soon 1 of the Fahren Knights, Rinen (the one from the OVA and I finally know her name) attacks them. Tsumugi remembers Gamou’s words not to use her powers as Kyoushiro fights back, standing up after each blow taken. He’s pretty determined. Or stubborn, if you look at it. More dramatic talk till Tsumugi can’t hold back any longer and summons her Raimu. Kyoushiro is surprised that she is a Raimu user. Soon the other Raimu girls arrive to lend a helping hand which made Rinen retreat for the moment. Gamou then comes by and congratulates Kyoushiro for passing a test to see whether he had the sense and judgement required for a commander. He then introduces himself as the Lt Commander and the other Raimu unit. But Kyoushiro is having the shock of his life because he didn’t expect the Raimu unit to be an all-girl unit.
 
Unfortunately, this is as far as I go. One main reason why I stopped watching this continuation is because this is where the subs end too. Furthermore, I feel that the new Raimu unit girls are not as pretty as the original ones ;P. Though I’m sure the sequel will turn out to be something predictable like the first season. Want to bet that the new Raimu unit will triumph in the end?
 
So back to the first season anyway. In the end, it didn’t make me feel interested to find out even further about the Japan-Russian war, so you could say that the only thing that I enjoyed most was having eye candy moments of the Raimu girls in their white uniform and those little ecchi jokes. Speaking of which, I find that the mid-intermission for the OVA to be more ecchi as compared to the 1st season tv series. I recently found out why this series drives on ecchi elements is because it was based on an H-game. Ah, now this explains everything.
 
The opening theme song is Rinka and is sung by the 5 girls of the Raimu unit. Sounds quite generic. Whereas the ending theme is Sora No Mukou, and it sounds very tropical-like. You can catch the girls and even the 3 little Shikigamis (in a military outfit) doing a little cute dance of their own during the end animation. Not to mention the Raimu girls doing some butt shaking dance too. Other than that the drawing, animation and art are pretty standard. Though I’m not a mecha fan, I feel that this isn’t one of the best mecha series out there. In addition, I find the mecha fights here to be somewhat mediocre. As for the character development, mainly we see how the girls changed, especially Kinu who is no longer a cry-baby (and of course some did not), as their love for Shintaro grows. They’ll stick with him through thick and thin. I guess it’s suffice for a short series.
 
However, after watching this series, it is not to be mistaken that young girls in the military are actually horny. No no. Nothing like that at all. Probably the girls here were too cooked up inside the ship and well, some young handsome guy comes along and made them feel like young girls again. Sort of. There you have it, his harem. Besides, if you think a little harder, this series also explores the subject of child soldiers. Young little kids lost their entire sweet childhood to some mindless war just because some grown ups didn’t like each other. So remember people, war is bad. So make peace, not war. Unless that kind of war turns out to be of love, then I guess that’s a different story.
 
Raimuiro Senkitan

Nodame Cantabile Special

September 19, 2008

Now I understand why the anime tv series for Nodame Cantabile had such an odd number of episodes. That’s because I kinda feel that it’s part of the producer’s plan to release extra never-seen-before episodes on the DVD. Okay, I’m not really sure if I could classify this special episode as the 24th episode because its boring uninspiring title states, Lesson 1, which is actually a special episode.
 
Though I’m not sure how many special episodes there are going to be, but let me just blog on this one first. In addition, this episode is also special because it is just 14 minutes long. Take away the opening and ending credits, and you’ll probably have 11 minutes or less screen time. Yeah, probably it’s not a good idea to classify this as the 24th episode.
 
Now this particular special episode takes place while Chiaki, Nodame, Mine, and Masumi are car pooling and taking a ride to Nina Lutz’s music festival as requested by Stresemann’s request during their summer vacation. Ah, it does bring back nostalgic memories when I was watching this show a year ago. As usual, Chiaki isn’t amused about riding in the same car with 3 weirdos but he has got no choice but to put up with their cacophony. Yeah, the other trio are singing 3 different tunes at the same time. I guess Chiaki has to learn to be patient. Ah well, there’s so much he can take. He tells them to shut up eventually.
 
But during their journey to the music festival, Mine took a detour. Uh huh. It’s not like he drove straight to the music festival-cum-seminar in Nagano. Chiaki dozed off during the journey and is awaken by Nodame’s voice calling him that they have reached their destination. Chiaki is in for the shock of his life (there are more to come, if you’ve watched the entire tv series ;P). Where the hell are they?! Niigata, Chiaki-senpai. Where is that? Heck, I too don’t know where but it seems that the gang have arrived at a beach. Yeah, those guys must be thinking it’s time to have some fun in the sun. Chiaki remembered how Stresemann mentioned about bringing their swimsuits before and I guess it’s normal for Chiaki to think he was just drunk or joking. Well, he wasn’t.
 
Chiaki is trying to make some excuse not to go with the weirdos, who are already all geared up in their swimsuits. Since Chiaki didn’t brought his, Mine says he’s glad to lend him his extra Speedo trunks. Like hell Chiaki would. Besides, if you remember Chiaki has a phobia of getting on planes and boats. Furthermore, he can’t let these weirdos know of this weakness of his as he fears they might do something nasty. Anything is possible. He then comes up with another excuse about suntan lotion. He’s saying how his skin is delicate and the doctor even advised against him about using it. The rest believed him and Chiaki told them to go have fun without him.
 
Nodame and Masumi are getting ready to swim in the sea but Mine thinks of getting a good tan and decides to sunbath so that he could look all manly and healthy. Masumi mentions how he looked like an asparagus growing underground and stares at his pink nipples! Enough to make Mine feel violated. As Nodame is swimming further out into the ocean, she notices how a lovey-dovey couple is clinging on to each other and sulkingly wishes she could do that with her Chiaki-senpai. Jealous Masumi then comes by and kicks some water and interrupts those poor lovebirds and tells them to go die. Heartless. When the duo head back to shore, they find Mine sound asleep. It’s then they devise a devilish plan. Yeah, they poured some sand and make a pair of musical notes on his chests!
 
Meanwhile, Chiaki is at the rest house and is doing some deep meditation (or perhaps he’s trying to be in denial that all this is happening). Something about being in a Zen temple in the mountainous recesses of Nagano. Nodame and Masumi come by and Chiaki tries his best to ignore what they are saying. Nodame then suggests to rent a little boat and ride it over to a nearby little island. The fear is back. Since they are pestering Chiaki to come along, Chiaki creams back what would happen if the boat capsizes. Chiaki realized what he has just said but the duo thinks that Chiaki can’t swim. With that, they took some measures (doesn’t seem useful) like preparing an instant anti-suntan lotion, Masumi’s strawhat (looks like the one Luffy’s wearing in One Piece) and a small little inflatable raft… They’re joking right? Not. Chiaki cowers in fear behind some kids making a sand castle when he saw how scary those waves are. Probably it must be a figment of his imagination and his phobia might have enhanced things. Nodame is convinced that he can’t swim after all. I’m not sure how they got Chiaki on the boat but he’s paralyzed and shivering in fear.
 
Masumi then tells Nodame that since he is rowing, he wants her to push the raft to launch it. But it was just a ploy to get rid of Nodame. As soon as the raft picks up speed, Masumi rows away quickly, leaving Nodame behind. Now nobody can stop him from making a love nest with Chiaki on that island. Chiaki must be feeling sea sick at that speed. But Nodame isn’t going to give up. With the power of "Mukyaa!", Nodame powers up and swims even faster than those who are jet skiing! Nodame catches up with the raft and grabs it. During the tussle, the raft capsizes and Chiaki’s worst fear comes true.
 
Those 2 must be real slow in realizing that Chiaki is drowning. When they do realize, they even fought with each other to save Chiaki! He’s going to drown at this rate. And please, stop fantasizing about Chiaki coming into your arms. This is a life and death situation here. Anyway the duo failed to save him and resurfaces. Luckily Chiaki manages to grab a nearby float of an ugly looking tanned blonde woman. Ugh! Those thick white eyebrows and lips… She and her identical looking bunch of friends then helped Chiaki ashore. No thanks to you guys, Nodame and Masumi. Back on land, Chiaki thanks them and says he’ll never forget their help. But in his heart, it was just a lie. Probably it must be their ugliness.
 
Chiaki goes back to the car but realizes that Mine has the keys and that his bags are inside it. What will he do? He then spot those ugly tanned ladies and their car number plate is of from Nagano. But it seems that when he called them, they don’t recognize who he is and they think that he is skirt chasing at this time of the day. Are they different girls. But heck, they look like the ones earlier on. Ah well, I guess you can’t tell people apart after they get tanned.
 
It’s evening already and Mine is crying. That’s because he is heartbroken to find that his chest has that musical note shape… Feeling betrayed by the friends he trusted (yeah, right), Mine decides to get his revenge. He drove all the way to Nagano alone as he mentions how he isn’t going to forgive them. When Nodame and Masumi head back to the car spot, they found a note written on the ground by Mine saying "Farewell, idiots!". Masumi thinks he’s such a villain while Nodame wonders if they have to hitchhike all the way to Nagano in their swimsuits. You guys get what you deserve. And as for Chiaki, he’s hitching a ride with those 3 tanned ladies who couldn’t believe that he’s going to a music festival. So yeah, as the screen caption states, "Their summer starts now…".
 
This special episode does indeed bring back memories while I was watching the series. Though it is enjoyable, but there isn’t really anything ‘special’ about it either. Just enough for a few short laughter. The only difference that I notice is that during the opening theme and credits, there are several piano keys on the top of the screen with some kanji writings on it. Since I can’t read, I’m not sure whether they’re additional credits or what. Similarly, the ending theme and credits has a flute on the upper part of the screen.
 
I suppose this beach episode is to provide fans of the series a little fanservice. I mean, Nodame fans can get a glimpse of her in a bikini, right? Yeah, there was an onscreen statement which points out that Nodame is a D-cup Devil. But I would recommend for those who want to watch this episode, to watch the tv series as well. Unless you just want to have some random laughs which makes no sense because you don’t really follow the series, then I think it’s okay.
 
Nodame Cantabile

Characters Who Get Lost Often

September 13, 2008

It’s really a big world out there. So sometimes it is not surprising to find yourself lost in an unknown territory. However, there are some people which have such a lousy sense of direction that they can even get lost if there are bloody obvious directional signs right in front of their faces! I suppose such traits gives that character ‘character’, huh? I wonder how they can interpret turning left means to turn right, vice versa.
 
Don’t give them a map to read because they may think it’s some sort of artwork. Don’t give them a compass because they may think it’s some sort of ancient tool. What about the stars in the sky? Well, aren’t they supposed to just look beautiful when you look up? Because of this, a GPS navigation tool is out of the question. Too complicated. Homing pigeons would turn their backs on them and simply fly away without ever returning. Nothing can stop them from losing their way and it is really a miracle that they have survived this long. Ah well, there is no studies which have shown any correlation between getting lost and survival rate. Here are the 10 anime characters who often get lost. And I don’t mean scram or get out of here. May God bless them.
 
Hatsuharu

Name: Hatsuharu Souma.
Anime: Fruits Basket.
Age: 16 years old.
Occupation: High school student.
Most memorable lost period: Got lost for 3 days while finding his way to Shigure’s house to challenge Kyo.
Comment: Do ox and cows lose their way? Or their seemingly laidback roaming and wandering around are just a cover up for their no sense of direction?
 
Shinobu
Name: Shinobu
Anime: Nagasarete Airantou.
Age: Not known but from the looks of it, may be in her late teens.
Occupation: Bushido practitioner.
Most memorable lost period: Appearing late in the anime series just because she lost her way around the island.
Comment: Airantou is considerably a small island and if she has been living there for her entire life, at least she should know about getting around the town area, right?
 
Mutsumi
Name: Mutsumi Otohime.
Anime: Love Hina.
Age: 20 years old.
Occupation: A 3rd year ronin trying to get into Tokyo University.
Most memorable lost period: Getting lost throughout several places in Japan while getting back to her hometown in Okinawa after taking a brief vacation from her flunked exams, even if she has got some help from Keitaro and Naru.
Comment: Perhaps if she opened her eyes a little more, she could at least see where she is headed. Oh but I remembered that she is quite an airhead too. So I feel that this and her poor health contribute to her bad sense of direction. Nothing to do with Keitaro and Naru, really.
 
Shinya
Name: Shinya Kamijo.
Anime: Happiness!.
Age: Though not mentioned, I’m assuming he is 16 years old based on the fact that he attends high school.
Occupation: Magic apprentice student and life-long protector of the Shikimori family.
Most memorable lost period: While going out bowling with his friends, during his turn to bowl he ends up on somebody else’s lane. Also while trekking up a mountain near the Shikimori Forest as a meeting point with his friends, he ends up lost on a buoy at sea. How on Earth did that happen?
Comment: Hopefully his magic sense should be better than his directional sense. But the weird part is that whenever his twin sister Saya is in danger, he’ll immediately rush and come to her aid. Doesn’t matter how far, but he’ll be there in a blink of an eye. Makes you wonder if his sense of direction is only working then or he has some sort of magnetic connection when that happens. So theoretically, Saya has to be in constant danger if we don’t want Shinya to ever get lost, right?

 

Isumi
Name: Isumi Saginomiya.
Anime: Hayate No Gotoku.
Age: 14 years old.
Occupation: High School Student and part time ghost/spirit exorcist.
Most memorable lost period: Trying to buy a train ticket to Brazil from Japan. Also, taking a walk in her own garden and somehow ending up in another part of the country.
Comment: One reason why this soft-spoken shy girl gets lost easily is because she really forgets her destination. Don’t remember where she’s heading for, huh? Ah well, like they always say, it’s the journey that it is most important and not the destination. Furthermore, she’s better than David Copperfield because if you take your eyes off her for just a second, she’ll be missing. And we can safely interpret that as being lost. Oh by the way, she did arrive in Brazil. After many many many several episodes later.
 
Rahzel
Name: Rahzel.
Anime: Hatenkou Yuugi.
Age: 14 years old.
Occupation: Wanderer-cum-adventurer.
Most memorable lost period: Well, she doesn’t actually have any obvious lost moments but due to her goals after being kicked out by her dad to see the world, she ends up in random towns.
Comment: Ironically, she’s like the ‘tour guide’ of her group because I think she’s sort of like the leader of the pack. But I guess due to her direction in life to see the world, whether this spunky magic user gets lost or not doesn’t really matter. Any town or place will do. Alas her most memorable quote/excuse when criticised for being lost: "You should blame the destination for not being where I’m headed".
 
Zaraki Yachiru
Name: Zaraki Kenpachi & Yachiru Kusajishi.
Anime: Bleach.
Age: Unknown. While Zaraki looks like a grown adult and Yachiru a kindergarten kid, since people in Soul Society live longer than ordinary human beings, I’m guessing they may be several hundreds of years old.
Occupation: Captain and vice captain of the 11th Division of Gotei 13 respectively.
Most memorable lost period: Getting lost within the Soul Society while trying to find and fight Ichigo.
Comment: Okay, so mainly it’s Yachiru who is leading the way and pointing to which direction Zaraki has to go. So why does that scar-face guy listen and trust that little pink haired girl so easily? Well, he did mention something about trusting one’s own instincts. Huh? I think that’s an excuse to say that his sense of direction is no better no hers. Ah, a true classic case of the blind leading the blind.
 
Ryoga
Name: Ryoga Hibiki.
Anime: Ranma 1/2.
Age: 16 years old.
Occupation: Martial arts trainee. Better than sound unemployed, right? I mean, this guy doesn’t really attend school nor does he do any part time job except training and training so that he could beat his eternal rival, Ranma, one day. One day…
Most memorable lost period: Opening the doors to every room except the exit while trying to leave Shampoo’s house. Also, running straight into the jungle ahead rather than following the road curving to the right which leads to the city. All because the person he asked for directions said that all he had to do was just to follow straight on this road. He must have taken it too literally.
Comment: This guy should train himself not to be physically stronger and better but rather his sense of direction. I’m sure he has missed several fights countless times just because of this. And since he realizes this short fall of his, listening blindly (oh, the oxymoron) to others wouldn’t help improve it any further. What is he thinking? Oh, about getting his revenge on Ranma. Perhaps he is thinking that destiny will allow him to meet up. In a thousand years, maybe…
 
Zoro
Name: Roronoa Zoro.
Anime: One Piece.
Age: 19 years old.
Occupation: Pirate (as a stepping stone to be the world’s greatest swordsman).
Most memorable lost period: During one of the Davy Fight Back games with Foxy’s crew, Zoro could even get lost even if there is obviously a straight path of land ahead of him. Amazingly, he ended up in one of the ‘dead ends’ of the path (splinter of the island path which leads to the ocean rather than the island top, that is). Also, while trying to retrieve a treasure in Skypiea, Zoro’s wandering took him back to the starting point of where he began his journey, at Going Merry, that is.
Comment: You may want to blame his sleeping habits since he spends half his time sleeping if he isn’t fighting, training or drinking. Ironically, possessing superb sword skills and having heightened visions (or even those which don’t require eye or visual vision) doesn’t seem to have a positive impact on his directional skills. I wonder how he got this messed up in the first place. I also tend to notice he seems to go the other way even if somebody yells where to go directly at his face. Is he listening? Perhaps he needs to give this area more training priority. I’m wondering if he could actually reach his goal. Ever heard of a highly skilled swordsman at the top with a horrible sense of direction? Yeah, if so, you’ll wonder how he got there.
 
Lost For Words
If you noticed why I included age and occupation here and wondering what is their relation to the characters being lost, this is to show you that being lost is some kind of disease. Meaning, it doesn’t matter whether you’re young or old, or the kind of job that you’re doing, this getting lost disease strikes anybody. Though, it is kinda worrying that the characters here are just teenagers. That’s like starting them young. Also, I’m wondering if this getting lost disease is genetic because I don’t have enough information to study on. From first looks, there is no indication that the characters here indicate their bad directional sense from their parents.
 
This list of lost-prone characters is not meant to be definitive as there are other anime characters who share such misfortune. Probably they got lost on their way to my list too. Hahaha! Just kidding. One main reason they’re not included is simply because… I HAVEN’T WATCHED EVERY DAMN ANIME YET! Is watching everything possible? Not for me.
 
There is an anime character which I wasn’t sure of putting into this list but ultimately decided not to. She is Sakuno Ryuuzaki of Prince Of Tennis. Fans who have watched this series may agree that she has a bad sense AT direction because she keeps giving Ryoma the wrong directions, which are totally opposite to his supposed destination. Having said so, I don’t recall her getting lost. Thus, based on this, I decided not to include her in the list but just to make a little note here.
 
While I myself won’t say that my sense of direction is perfect, but I still have what it takes to get myself around, though at times I really lost my way. So is there any cure or hope for this hapless people? Well, we could all pray real hard that their natural inner homing device will miraculously turn for the better. Even if it takes a very long time. But I guess it is better than losing one’s mind. Now get lost!

Fruits Candy

September 12, 2008

  Ameagari no machi e to dekakeyou,
  BABARUGAMU to koukishin wo fukuramase,
  Mizutamari ni utsutta blue blue sky,
  Namido mo kitto kawaku yo jelly bean
 
Just like many other anime shows aired over tv back when I was young, I didn’t really consider Card Captor Sakura to be an anime but just another one of those weekend morning cartoons targeted for little children. Furthermore, I’m not even a fan of the series. Not then and not even now. So why did I woke up like an early bird on a beautiful Saturday meant for kids like me to sleep? Obviously, there has only been 1 reason all along. Why, it’s the opening or ending theme, of course!
 
  Ah PASTERU no hizashi ni,
  Shiawase mo akubi shiteru,
  Yukkuri to arukimashou,
  Ah ah ah ah
 
Yeah, it’s like some sort of a ‘calling’. I’d purposely woke up just to listen to some of the nice themes of the series. Fruits Candy, which is the 3rd ending theme of the series, seems to have caught my attention then and ever since I have taken quite a liking for this song. Uh huh. Even my Singaporean cousin, Mei, couldn’t believe that a guy like me really like this kind of song when I admitted it. Of all the other songs in this anime, I had to like this one? Well, to each his own.
 
  Tip tap maru de yume miru candy,
  Hohohareba sugu ni happy,
  Goodbye totemo yuutsu na Monday,
  Aseranaide my dream
 
A main reason why this is still one of favourite karaoke songs is that this pop piece is quite lively and spunky. It makes you want to get up and dance to the beat of the song. Since it is sung by Megumi Kojima, I don’t really find it tough to sing it. Not to say I sound perfect nor close to the singer herself, but at least each time when I sing it, I can expect not to worry about screwing up the lines. Okay, maybe on some occasions it may be a little challenging like the chorus part. Due to the energetic-ness of the song, I sometimes find myself a little out of breath when it comes to the chorus or when the song is near the end. Perhaps I should stop moving around so much while singing. But I can help it. This song really moves my body.
 
  Ah KARAFURU na kibun de,
  Kuchizusamu amai MERODI,
  FUIRMA ga mawaridasu,
  Ah ah ah ah
 
Lyrics wise, it is quite fun and easy to remember. Though the song mixes in several English words (in the sense that there is almost one English word in nearly every line). But I guess that is what makes this song partly enjoyable too. The words of the song too projects a happy image and seems fit for children. You know, jelly beans to angels to marbles and spreading jam while drinking milk tea. And the animation of the series shows Sakura along with Tomoyo and Kero baking a delicious cake together.
 
  Tip tap koi wa itsudatte candy,
  FUURUTSU no you ni tasty,
  Good luck sou na mainichi ga Sunday,
  Awatenaide my heart
 
I want to mention that there is a line in the lyrics which goes "…totemo U2 na Monday". Now, that is actually what it is written in as the lyrics and is a reference to that Irish rock band, U2. Is it a bad pun or does whoever wrote the lyrics have something against them? Though when the singer sings it, she pronounces it as ‘yuutsu’ (meaning, depressed). But I wouldn’t let that little line bother me one single bit as I’ll be having to much fun singing and dancing all the way. Hmm… Perhaps the karaoke version should have some background vocals in it. Not that the full version’s background vocals are obvious but at least, it won’t make my singing sound so ‘hollow’.
 
  Awatenaide my heart…
 
Card Captor Sakura

Hehehe. I couldn’t resist another tribute for Mai Tokiha after I did one for Suigin Tou last fortnight. This prooves that after all this years, this gal from Mai-HiME still got what it takes to win my heart. Well, not that she did anything in particular, really. So without further ado, here are more pictures and images of her. Hey, what else would you expect. Everyone let’s rise and give her a standing ovation, the one and only Maaaaaaaaai Tokihaaaaaaaaaa!
 
 Mai Tokiha 58

HEAVENLY BODY: Oh, you are the reason why the sun sets and the moon rise.
 
 Mai Tokiha 57
TO SCHOOL: Mai and her buddies happily looking forward to another day of school.
 
 Mai Tokiha 56
TAKING A BREAK: Lying on a wooden floor seems to have a cooling effect.
 
 Mai Tokiha 59
WISHING & HOPING: I wonder what Mai is hoping for and the rest are cheering for.
 
 Mai Tokiha 60
DOU KASHIRA?: "I wonder if I would make a good wife…". Yeah right! Like that’s what she’s pondering about.
 
 Mai Tokiha 61
CAN’T TOUCH THIS: Free ‘sampling’ not allowed!
 
 Mai Tokiha 63
LOOKING GOOD: Mai strikes it right in all the proportions.
 
Mai Tokiha 62 
LOOKING BETTER: Mai is a natural model too, I’d say.
 
 Mai Tokiha 83
GIRLFRIEND: Even Mai strikes the right notes with her lady pals.
 
 Mai tokiha 85
WINTER WONDERLAND: Enjoying the snow falls.
 
 Mai Tokiha 84
PREPARED: Mai ready to face any challenges from her adversaries.
 
 Mai Tokiha 86
WARM WELCOME: Mikoto giving Mai her usual happy-to-see-you hug.
 
 Mai Tokiha 88
WORKING OUT: A girl like her needs to stay fit and keep in shape in addition to just studying.
 
 Mai Tokiha 87
IN THE WOODS: Posing for a picture?
 
Mai Tokiha 90 
I’M NOT!: I’m not someone who is easily being pushed around!
 
Mai Tokiha 82 
YOU’VE BAGGED MY HEART: Are 2 bags enough to carry all the stuff she needs? Perhaps photos of me. Haha! Just kidding.
 
Well, have we had enough yet? Of course, I haven’t but due to limited constraints like time and space, looks like I will have to continue this some other day. Sometimes I feel that there isn’t enough hours in a day for me to worship her. Not enough days in a week, not enough months in a year, not enough time in my entire life… Yeah, right! Outright exaggeration there. But I guess it’s all in my mind. And I wouldn’t have it any other way either. JIKANGIRE MADE MAI-SAMA WA AISHITERU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Red heart

When I watched these 2 animes, I felt that there was somewhat a striking resemblance between them. Okay, maybe it was just because of the main pair of the series’ hero and heroine. Furthermore, many fans think likewise because the seiyuus for both the main hero and heroine of both series, Zero No Tsukaima and Shakugan No Shana are the same people, Satoshi Hino and Rie Kugimiya. Other than that, it’s not like one series is a rip-off from the other. So this is what I know, the similarities and differences between them. See if you agree…
 
Main hero
That lucky boy who is going to be the series’ saviour. Or something close. Both are voiced by Satoshi Hino.
Zero No Tsukaima: Saito Hiraga.
Shakugan No Shana: Yuji Sakai.
 
What makes him special
I mean, that guy has something different from the rest which stands out which makes him sort of like, The One, The Saviour, The Man, right?
Zero No Tsukaima: Since there are some Rune encryptions on Saito’s arm, he is rumoured to be the legendary Gandalfr, which is supposedly the familiar of the magic Void user. Once his power is activated, Saito becomes highly skilled and faster.
Shakugan No Shana: Yuji finds out that he is a type of Mystes (a special kind of Torch) and that he has a treasure called Reiji Maigo inside of him. This power allows his Power Of Existence to be restored once his Torch’s flame goes out.
 
Ignorance
What the main hero chose not to believe in, their new found knowledge.
Zero No Tsukaima: Saito doesn’t believe and refuses to accept the pride, honour and differences among nobles and commoners. Throughout the series, Saito sticks firmly to his believe.
Shakugan No Shana: Yuji doesn’t believe and refuses to accept that he has already died and that he is just a temporary being. Throughout the series, Yuji comes to terms with his new surroundings.
 
Main heroine
That pretty girl who is going to help the main guy in saving the world. Or something like that. Both are voiced by Rie Kugimiya.
Zero No Tsukaima: Louise Francoise Le Blanc De La Valliere.
Shakugan No Shana: Shana.
Wow. Note the vast difference in the length of their names.
 
Heroine’s nickname
Why is she also known as this.
Zero No Tsukaima: Louise The Zero because of her zero percent success in pulling of magic.
Shakugan No Shana: Enpatsu Shakugan No Uchite because just like her appearance, she has blazing eyes and flaming hair.
 
Heroine’s clan
The clan she belongs to.
Zero No Tsukaima: In addition to be a student of the Tristain Magic Academy, Louise is also the youngest daughter of a famous noble family of Tristain.
Shakugan No Shana: Shana belongs to a group called Flame Haze, people who have to maintain the balance of the world.
 
Heroine’s favourite food
I know this is trivial, but what the heck, I kinda noticed it.
Zero No Tsukaima: Cookberry pie.
Shakugan No Shana: Melon bread.
 
Why they are bound together
Zero No Tsukaima: As part of the familiar summoning process of the academy, Louise summons a human from another world, Saito. She kisses him on the lips as part of the contract to make Saito her familiar, no matter how she dislikes it.
Shakugan No Shana: Originally viewed Yuji as just a normal Torch. But when his Torch did not extinguish like the rest, but replenishes instead, Shana decides to stay close to him in order to keep an eye.
But you know, as the series progresses, you’ll find that hate turns into love and both girls are like so tsundere. Can’t admit it upfront but deep down in their hearts, they’re like little innocent girls in love…
 
His pain, her gain
Well, I kinda noticed that the guys endured some sort of ‘torture’ from the girls.
Zero No Tsukaima: Louise always has to afflict and torment Saito with her whip due to his perverted and lecherous ways. But that guy doesn’t learn.
Shakugan No Shana: Shana has to train Yuji so that he will be able to defend himself. But through time, he learns and gains from it all.
 
Heroine’s favourite catchphrase
Lines you’ll probably here her say quite often.
Zero No Tsukaima: Louise goes "Baka inu!" (stupid dog!) everytime she catches Saito flirting or staring at a girl’s boobs.
Shakugan No Shana: Shana goes "Urusai! Urusai! Urusai!" (shut up!) everytime Yuji asks too much questions in which she doesn’t have the answers to.
 
World setting
The place of where the series is set.
Zero No Tsukaima: Another alternate realm. A world filled with medieval-like theme and magic.
Shakugan No Shana: Modern day Japan. Though at certain times the city can turn into a special type of dimension called Seal (Fuzetsu) where time and living things stand still.
 
Sword
Our heroic pair (well, at least one of them) wields a sword to help in their quest.
Zero No Tsukaima: Saito has a sword called Derflinger.
Shakugan No Shana: Shana has a sword named Nietono No Shana.
 
How the sword was obtained
It’s not like the blade was given to them on a silver platter from the start.
Zero No Tsukaima: Kirche and Louise had a ‘duel’ to win Saito over with the former buying an expensive gold sword (using her charm to bring the price down of course) and the latter an old rusty-looking sword. Saito is in a dilemma on which one to choose as he doesn’t want to break either one of their hearts but he eventually chose Louise’s because he was in awe when the sword suddenly spoke to tell the 2 bickering ladies to shut up.
Shakugan No Shana: A strong Mystes known as Tenmoku Ikko was searching for a successor worthy to pass on his Crimson Denizen destroying sword. Shana with a very determined will to become a Flame Haze, takes him on in a duel and beats him in 1 powerful blow. After the battle, Shana shortly wakes up from her unconsciousness and takes the sword, vowing to fulfill both their destinies.
 
Talking items
Well, the pair has talking objects with them…
Zero No Tsukaima: Derflinger is a sarcastic talking sword. His comments and advice doesn’t usually reflect well on Saito.
Shakugan No Shana: Alastor is the Lord Of The Crimson Realm that Shana is bound to, in the form of a pendant. He provides advice and guide to Shana with his wisdom and experiences.
 
Sarcasm
Characters with a ‘sharp’ tongue.
Zero No Tsukaima: Derflinger.
Shakugan No Shana: Marcosias (the Crimson Lord in the form of a book bound to Margery Daw).
Okay, I’ve mentioned Derflinger nearly 3 straight times already. Promise no more this ‘D’ guy again.
 
Allies
Can’t be fighting the entire world just by themselves, right?
Zero No Tsukaima: The Princess of the Tristain Kingdom, Henrietta, and the other students of the Tristain which include Kirche, Tabitha, Guiche, Montmorency and academy staffs like Colbert and headmaster Osmond.
Shakugan No Shana: Other Flame Hazes such as Margery Daw, Wilhelmina Carmel, Khamsin Nbh’w, and his other classmates who are drawn into the fray, Keisaku Sato and Eita Tanaka.
 
Kirche vs Margery Daw
Okay, not much similarities between these 2 because the only thing similar that I can think of between them is that the tanned orange hair Kirche of Zero No Tsukaima and the fair skinned blonde Margery Daw of Shakugan No Shana, are both equally the bustiest characters in the series. While Kirche likes to flirt, has Tabitha as her companion as they’re always seen together, and has a salamander called Flame as her familiar, on the other hand Margery Daw likes to drink and get drunk, has Marcosias as her Crimson Lord as they’re always seen together, and has 2 loyal human schoolboys named Sato and Tanaka as her underlings.
 
Foes
The main antagonist of the series.
Zero No Tsukaima: The Reconquistadors led by Oliver Cromwell, Ward, Fouquet and latter-would-be-leader, Sheffield.
Shakugan No Shana: Though not all Crimson Denizens are evil, the main villains for this series are the Tomogara (a type of Crimson Denizen) and Rinne (servants of Tomogara) which include Friagne, Marianne, Sorath, Tiriel, Dantalion, and the Bal Masque which comprises of Bel Peol, Hecate and Sydonay.
 
Floating fortresses
Look up in the sky. Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Nope. It’s a big piece of rock…
Zero No Tsukaima: The flying fortress island of Albion.
Shakugan No Shana: The headquarters of Bal Masque, Seireiden.
 
Magic and spells
Zero No Tsukaima: Each of the magic users cast spells based on the element specialty like Kirche is fire, Tabitha is wind, Montmorency is Water and Guiche is Earth. Such magic are enabled when the users use their wand or staff.
Shakugan No Shana: Unrestricted Methods are powerful spells mainly used in battles although they can be used for just about anything. An Unrestricted Method is enabled when a large round blue circle with encryptions on it appear.
 
Ring
That finger ornament not the telephone noise or doorbell lah…
Zero No Tsukaima: The Ring Of Andvari which has the power to revive dead souls and control minds was stolen by Cromwell from The Water Guardian, to further his evil deeds. Then there’s also that wedding ring which a mind controlled Louise nearly wedded Ward with…
Shakugan No Shana: Azur, the ring which belongs to Friagne comes into Yuji’s possession when Shana decides to give it to him. On several occasions, the ring has saved Yuji.
 
Maid outfit
Characters which don a maid-like outfit. This doesn’t include extras.
Zero No Tsukaima: Siesta.
Shakugan No Shana: Wilhemina.
 
Love triangle
It seems that the fight isn’t just restricted to a battle of good versus evil. The mysteries of attraction and chemistry play a part to help ease sword/magic combat hostilities (though it gives rise to another sort of tension). Hey, they’re teenagers after all, right?
Zero No Tsukaima: The maid of the magic academy, Siesta, seems to harbour some feelings for Saito while I’m not particularly sure if Kirche’s flirtatious ways towards him is just part of her fun or being serious.
Shakugan No Shana: Yuji’s classmate, Kasumi Yoshida, has a crush on him but is too shy to confess her feelings.
 
Other love couples
Those not involving the main pair of heroes.
Zero No Tsukaima: Montmorency and Guiche. Though there is a relationship between the 2, it won’t be so obvious that you’ll get to see public display of affection. Well, Montmorency does like Guiche but she hides those feelings and since Guiche is such a playboy… Also there is Henrietta and the Prince Of Wales.
Shakugan No Shana: Tanaka and Matake Ogata. Okay, this is just like Yoshida-Yuji case. Ogata really has a crush on Tanaka and even confessed to him. Of course, he didn’t give a direct answer…
 
Kidnapped
Whisked away off one’s feet. Sort of.
Zero No Tsukaima: Well, not really. Louise has been mind controlled by Ward and was nearly being forced into marriage. It didn’t work out in the end.
Shakugan No Shana: Yuji has been kidnapped so that Hecate can fulfill herself as a whole with Yuji’s memories. It didn’t work out in the end.
 
Disguise
The heroines go undercover as somebody else…
Zero No Tsukaima: Louise disguises herself as a commoner and works part time at a bar in order to expose a noble misusing his powers to oppress commoners. Only those working alongside her knows her true identity, in which Louise reveals it after the criminal is identified.
Shakugan No Shana: In order to be close to Yuji, Shana uses the remnant flames of Yuji’s classmate, Yukari Hirai, and disguises as her and even attend classes with Yuji. Nobody of the normal world knows that Yukari is Shana as they still see Shana as Yukari.
 
Last minute super power unleashing blast
That ultimate firepower in the final episode.
Zero No Tsukaima: Louise’s Void magic starts to awaken and in a trance, her super blast destroys the enemy’s army.
Shakugan No Shana: In order to contain the overflowing Power Of Existence city, Shana uses and unleashes Alastor’s true form to consume it all in a huge enveloped flame.
 
Last minute confession
Well, better than never, right? Even if it’s in the final episode.
Zero No Tsukaima: After the last minute super power unleashing blast, Louise instantly kisses Saito once more but comes up with an excuse to say that it is just part of recontracting him as her familiar.
Shakugan No Shana: Before the last minute super power unleashing blast, Shana confesses her love to Yuji after the latter mentions that he wants to go through it all together with her and not by herself.
 
Last minute aftermath survival
Heroes and heroines don’t really die even if it’s the final episode.
Zero No Tsukaima: Louise wakes up fully clothed after the battle and finds herself lying on Saito’s lap. The Void magic caused her to be in a trance during the battle and unconscious soon after.
Shakugan No Shana: Shana wakes up naked after the battle to find Yuji calling her name. Alastor’s container was large enough to protect Shana from being consumed by the flames.
 
Name and terminology
Zero No Tsukaima: The name of the characters and country have that old European medieval feel. The terms of the series sound fantasy-like.
Shakugan No Shana: Most of the characters aside normal humans, have second nicknames which sounds grand and has something to do with their role. The terms too sound grand and complicated and is a departure from normal straightforward terms.
 
Eyecatch
The music and animation of the mid-intermission.
Zero No Tsukaima: The short orchestral music sounds quite lively while the animation shows Louise with her unsuccessful attempt at magic, blowing up herself and Saito, while the background is a still picture of a randomly selected character in the series.
Shakugan No Shana: The short orchestral music sounds loud and ‘intimidating’ while there is only still pictures of randomly selected characters in the series and sometimes in different cosplaying outfits. It can range from comical and silly to serious.
 
Number of episodes
Zero No Tsukaima: 13 episodes.
Shakugan No Shana: 24 episodes.
 
Sequels
Zero No Tsukaima: The 2nd season is called Zero No Tsukaima: Futatsuki No Kishi and has 12 episodes. Currently a 3rd season called Zero No Tsukaima: Princesses No Rondo is running in Japan.
Shakugan No Shana: The 2nd season is called Shakugan No Shana II and has 24 episodes.
 
Conclusion
I have to admit that this isn’t one of my best versus between animes yet. Honestly, I haven’t even watched the sequel of Shakugan No Shana and still wondering if I should. So there may be some comparisons and other details being left out. Yeah, I didn’t even include the second season of Zero No Tsukaima, since I watched that one already. If I had to choose which one, I’d prefer Zero No Tsukaima more than Shakugan No Shana because the former leans towards love comedy action adventure while the latter too have such elements but it’s a little bit darker and the terminology was confusing and hard to remember for me. Though I can’t say that the sequel to Zero No Tsukaima is any better than the first. But the overall fact is that, they’re quite enjoyable to watch if you like the kind of shows with fantasy mixed with some action and adventure.
 
Zero No Tsukaima  Shakugan No Shana