Hey wait a minute. I knew there was going to be a sequel for Shingeki No Kyojin but did they jump the gun and make another spin-off of the series? I mean, who is this Bahamut guy? Attack on Bahamut? Is this the ultimate Titan that our heroes must face and kill? No, it is not you say? Phew. Thank goodness. I thought I was taken for a ride (maybe I was). Glad to say that Shingeki No Bahamut: Genesis has no relation to that popular Titan series whatsoever. So I guess that is why officially the English title they translated it as Rage of Bahamut to avoid any confusion associating with Attack on Titan.

So in this series, we have the good news that there are no giant beings trying to eat humans. But there is a giant being laying dormant for a couple of thousands of years that could destroy all that ever exist if it is ever released from its seal. Better keep that seal on. And as you know as time passed, some unscrupulous parties want to revive it for their nefarious ends and it is up to our unlikely heroes who got dragged into this mess to save the world. Sounds like an unoriginal storyline? Well, watch this action packed magical fantasy and you’ll see…

Episode 1
2000 years ago at Abos, there seems to be some legendary power fight with a dragon named Bahamut. Do you think humans have a chance? Present day at Wytearp. Kaisar Lidfort is furiously chasing after Favaro Leone through the Spanish-like town. Kaisar accuses Favaro that he is now a wretched bounty hunter. But mischievous and cocky Favaro plays a prank on his horse so Kaisar has no choice but to go after it. Meanwhile, several men in the trade of kidnapping women are lamenting their fate from their boss, Sir Garth since they are coming home empty handed (thanks to Favaro and Kaisar’s chase interrupting and putting a damper on their kidnapping). Suddenly this beautiful naked lady, Amira falls down from the sky. She notes her compass is broken and cannot reach Helheim now. The bandits are going to attack her but when you see this chick power up… Your fate is sealed. But a couple of them managed to escape and return to Garth. Big boss wants the bounty hunter’s head. Don’t bother looking. Favaro is here to take Garth him as he is on the wanted list. Garth summons his beast but Favaro has a dirty trick up his sleeve that tames it. With that, bounty captured. Favaro returns to Bacchus and his talking duck, Hamsa to claim his reward but is stumped that he only got half the amount. And since it is Favaro’s policy to spend his earnings, he is going to party hard. Yeah, waste it all on food and women at the bar. And like his usual arrogant style, he fabricates and exaggerates (probably all big lies) about his adventures and one of them being his journey to Helheim.

Amira is outside and heard this but Kaisar bumps into her and offers her to take her wherever she wants. She declines as she says she already has found a guide. Of course with Kaisar here looking to pick a bone with Favaro, that cheeky guy turns the tables on him and paints him as a richer and charitable man. This means all the women are now flocking to his side while Favaro himself escapes. That bastard. Amira confronts Favaro and wants him to guide her to Helheim. Favaro wonders if he should make up a lie and play along or just run. Looking at how pretty she is, he tries to hint he isn’t doing this for free and wants a kiss. Sorry to interrupt your kissy moment but here is Ghos to avenge his brother. Ghos who? Garth’s twin brother. Ah, no wonder he only got half the reward. So that wanted poster wasn’t just duplicated print. Ghos summons a huge terrifying beast to attack. Because Amira needs him to guide her to Helheim, she will help him. She transforms into a demon and easily takes it out! I’m sure Favaro will be happy to collect the remaining half of the reward but he begins to think the sh*t he is in since Amira is a demon… Too late to back out? As he passes out, it seems in this dream-like state he is falling down into some hell place. He wakes up in a room and tended by one of those ladies at the bar. When he starts stripping, she screams in fear that he is a demon. Wait. Favaro is a demon? He can’t even believe it himself till he looks in the mirror. He has a demon’s tail!!! Not good. You’re screwed.

Episode 2
When Heaven seems to be in a state of panic when they find out God’s Key have been stolen, they order the human, Jeanne D’Arc of the Orleans Knights to do the job. They have to get it done because if those 2 keys are brought together, it will rise again. So we see Jeanne and her knights being bestowed the power of Gods to repel the demons. But is Bahamut going to resurrect again? Back in present time, Favaro thinks he is dreaming. No he’s not. He can’t pull off the tail. It seems Amira has casted a contract spell on him (when he wanted to kiss her). Even worse, Kaisar is coming in to look for him. They flee through the window. Kaisar thinks he is into kidnapping women now. Favaro needs to break this curse and thinks the best way is to kill her. He could do it right now but needs to wait for a better chance. Thus he plays along with her and that he will personally take her to Helheim. The Orleans Knights enter town seeking a demon in human guise. Kaisar says he knows but because it is his mission to catch it, he will not reveal more but is more than glad to catch it for them. Because they see his bounty hunter band, they mock him and do not believe he comes from a lineage of noble knights. Of course, short flashbacks of how the people turned their backs against his family of proud knights. Lavalley the leader hints to him the desire for something can make one strong. This gives Kaisar the motivation to catch Favaro and re-establish their house. Favaro needs some funds so he goes bounty hunting. Amira easily defeats this monster. So are you having second thoughts about killing this chick? It isn’t going to be easy… Favaro goes to Bacchus to collect his reward. Amira… Wants to eat the duck!!!

Since Amira can’t walk around in suspicious clothes, Favaro takes her to tailor to get her decent ones. Then he treats her to food and booze. Yeah, she loves it! He even teaches her to dance. Having fun? So later when she is out lying in the lake and thinking about how much fun that was, it is actually Favaro’s ploy to let her guard down and kill her. However something is wrong with his band and is not working. He diverts her attention talking about his mother so Amira too mentions her reason to go to Helheim to see her mother. She has vague memories of her but when she holds her pendant, she can faintly recall the gentle look on her face. Then here comes Kaisar looking for his revenge. Amira protects her and since he is fawning over her beauty, Favaro kicks him in the face. He needs some time out. Favaro notices the knights in town and decides to play Amira out. He tells them of her location for a reward. The knights chase after and corner her and it seems she is the one who stole God’s Key. Favaro is going to let the knights kill her but the horse he is riding doesn’t go the way he wants and heads towards Amira. It interrupts the knights’ enchanting spell and enough time for them to escape. I guess Favaro can’t escape now. They are cornered at the bridge. Favaro pretends to take Amira hostage. Thinking of taking a swim? Yeah. Long way down… They are safe from danger as Favaro couldn’t believe why he had to side and save her. Had he not done so, the curse of the tail might have been broken. Amira wonders if he is a liar. The liar lies that he is telling the truth and to look in his eyes. He puts up a funny face and earns a slap. Soon, wanted posters of Favaro and Amira are up. Kaisar vows to save her from him.

Episode 3
Heaven is trembling as this is a sign of Bahamut’s revival. Jeanne must make haste her retrieval. But it seems she senses something odd. Weird things begin to appear after she stuck her sword in the ground. It could mean that the balance between Gods and demons have begun to crumble as the holy key is taken from the holy land. Meanwhile Kaisar is so obsessed in chasing Favaro that he ends up in some deserted land but a girl, Rita picks him up. Meanwhile Favaro goes on another bounty hunting for funds and this time he kills some dragon to get some herbs because he knows the next bounty hunter uses some kind of deadly restorative arts. And no Amira, you can’t eat or drink it. It occurred to Favaro that Amira has a wing. So why didn’t she use it to fly instead of making him go through all that trouble? She can’t fly since she lost the other wing. After she infiltrated and stole God’s Key, she was attacked and repelled. Although she survived, she lost a wing in the process. God’s Key is not a physical object and is now inside her. She has absorbed it into her soul. This means she is the God’s Key. Kaisar wakes up in the hospitality of Rita’s family. They serve him food and mention about terrible monsters attacking their town, ravaging their crops and kidnapping children. Rita is the only one left. To repay their kindness, Kaisar will help them slay the monsters. Rita is not amused with everything and leaves rudely. Kaisar goes to talk to her and although he doesn’t understand what she is murmuring about being older than him and sick of playing house. He continues talking that he was once like her, finding his own family annoying. His father was strict as he came from a lineage of knights. One day his father was selected to guard a king’s tribute. They were ambushed by bandits and the tribute stolen. His father as the leader was held responsible and was hanged. The family was stripped of their title status and banished. Half a year later, his mother cannot take it anymore and drowned herself. It is only then he realized he loved his family. So don’t be like him. Yeah, Rita wasn’t paying attention. It was boring. Besides, he is having stomach ache now?

Kaisar and the townspeople get ready to slay the incoming monsters. But do the monsters sound familiar? Once Kaisar is overwhelmed and given the herb, the ‘monsters’ turn out to be Favaro and Amira. He points out he was hypnotized by the fog’s spell. As he looks around, the entire place is dilapidated and the townspeople are zombies! Rita is a necromancer and she was hoping Kaisar could have stayed oblivious… Remember the food he ate? Maggots… Damn… Feeling sick now? Rita orders her zombies to attack. They fight back as well as Kaisar since he is upset he has been had. He is about to attack Rita’s zombie parents but she won’t allow him. I don’t know why or how but they bit her! Favaro takes Rita’s Black Bible which is the bounty. Favaro explains this town was attacked by monsters 200 years ago and Rita the only survivor found a spell book to revive the town. She’s been playing this sick family game for 2 centuries now. No wonder she’s tired of it. But you know what they say when somebody is bitten by a zombie? Yeah. She’s going to turn into one soon. Not Favaro’s problem. But can Kaisar kill her? Decide quickly because she is going to bite him! Favaro collects his reward and dismisses the bounty on his head. Maybe it’s somebody who looks like him. Yeah right. Oh, Amira chasing after Hamsa. She really wants to eat it!!! In the aftermath, we see Rita following Kaisar. Time to go on an adventure, I guess.

Episode 4
Amira is starting to get suspicious if Favaro is lying. Because how come now he is trying to get a boat to sail to Helheim? Yeah well, Bacchus told him that was the way. At first nobody knows of any boat and when he finally finds one, he remembers this captain, Amon. An emotional reunion? If you consider punching each other as that. Turns out that Amon was part of Barrosa, Favaro’s dad band of noble thieves. Favaro felt that kind of job didn’t suit him and didn’t take over after his death. Meanwhile Kaisar and Rita have also found a boat to chase after Favaro. Kaisar reveals that Favaro is his childhood friend. Despite their different status, they were close. Close enough for Kaisar to tell him everything. But on that fateful day when Barrosa attacked his father’s convey, Kaisar felt betrayed that Favaro sold him out and hid his identity as a son of a thief. And on Amon’s side, he remembers that tribute stealing incident was their last job. However one of the jewels contained a powerful magic and they unsealed a horrific demon. Everyone was slaughtered and Amon is the only survivor thanks to Barrosa saving him. Amira doesn’t know what a father is so Favaro has a hard time explaining. Suddenly a monster crab attacks. Time for Amira to go into demon mode and take it out. Besides, she’s very hungry. Too bad the crab isn’t delicious. Yucks. Elsewhere, Kaisar realizes he has been tricked as the boat he is on is only but pirates. They’re going to take him out but Kaisar can stand his ground. The captain thought taking Rita hostage is a good idea. Not. She bites him.

Amon is shocked to see Favaro a demon (his tail). Suddenly mermen jump out from the sea and they capture Favaro. Amon has planned this from the start. He made a deal with that demon and was granted magic for making that happen. Thus Amon was the one who killed Barrosa. Now he gets to profit on his son since there is a bounty on his head. But his ship is rammed by another. Rita commands all the pirates she turned into zombies. The commotion allows Favaro and Amira to escape to higher ground. All the zombie pirates start biting the mermen. Infected. I don’t know, this scene looks like one freakish orgy… Amon fights Favaro but the latter shoots the wheel to make the ship suddenly yaw. Amon falls off and into the claws of that monster crab. Chow time. Wait a minute. That puny fat guy was enough to satiate its appetite? Maybe he didn’t taste so good and returned to the sea to take a dump. HAHAHA!!! And now Kaisar wants a piece of Favaro. Before they can settle it, lightning strikes. Kaisar protects Amira although they both take a hit. A tentacle from the sky grabs them away.

Episode 5
In the Holy Land of Abos, angels are trying hard with their barriers to prevent Bahamut’s resurrection. Doesn’t look good… Rita tells Favaro that Amira was taken away by Gregor, who is also the flying castle for the fallen angel, Azazel. Weakened Amira is being tortured by Pazuzu for answers but her lips remained tightly sealed. Kaisar wants this to stop and insists this is all part of Favaro the demon’s plan. They start laughing so Azazel tells him Amira’s background. He is of course surprised to hear this. Because they can’t believe Amira could pull off such a great feat alone, they want to know who ordered her and the one pulling the strings. Kaisar still believes it is Favaro’s fault. They continue laughing but Kaisar is serious. He tells him about his best friend and betrayal that led to the downfall of his family. Immediately Azazel figures out who he is and of course Favaro. He tells Kaisar he will achieve nothing like his pitiful father. Meanwhile back on land, Favaro threatens Bacchus and wants to lend his carriage for that bogus tip. Bacchus dares him to show him how serious he is for the fare. Favaro strikes his dagger close to him and breaks his band, scaring the sh*t out of Bacchus. Without the band, Favaro is just an outlaw but he’ll cross the bridge when he gets there. They are on their way to the Sword of Valley. There lies a portal to the demon capital, Cocytus. This is where Azazel is going since Lucifer, the head of the fallen angels is there. This is as far Bacchus will take him. They won’t meet again.

Favaro and Rita invade Gregor. Azazel wants some entertainment and is willing to give Kaisar a chance to avenge his father. Favaro falls through a trapdoor and ends up in a torture room where Amira is. Before he can save her, here comes angry Kaisar trying to kill him. Again. But this time he is so mad and raging that he is close to doing that. But Rita punches him to tell him to stop it. When Gregor is partially through the portal, it closes, killing it. Seems Jeanne and the Orleans Knights were laying in wait for this ambush. Then they unleash all their firepower at Gregor in an attempt to retrieve Amira. Kaisar is not amused that Favaro seeks his help. Not after all that he has done. But Favaro promises they will settle it once they get out. He won’t run this time. His determined eyes make it believable. Pazuzu comes to get Amira but Favaro and Kaisar team up to land heavy cogs in his face and one ultimately one crushing him. Outside, Azazel is going to take Amira but something in her awakens and repels him off. He now understands what is happening. Gregor is crashing so how will our heroes get off? Rita turns a dead dragon into a zombie and they’ve got their free flight. Kaisar sees Orleans Knights below and wonders if Favaro called them. Nah. The wind just happened to blow this way, that’s all.

Episode 6
Amira remembers that someone told her to fulfil her mission and her wish will come true. Therefore she really wants to get there now but looks like they can’t. Because Orleans Knights take them into custody. At Cocytus, Azazel is stopped by Martinet to see Lucifer because of his failure. In that case, he’ll just go take it back. Amira and co are taken before the king in the royal capital of Anatae. Angels led by Michael descend down to explain Amira is both an angel and demon and the reason why she could infiltrate so easily was because she can switch between both. Because God’s Key is within a demon, they cannot take her back to the Ark. They order the king to guard her with his life as she will remain here. As for the rest, they too are to remain in his protection. The sign of Bahamut’s revival is growing. Should the keys created by Zeus and Satan become one with Bahamut, a catastrophe will occur. Their execution will only put a strain on Amira’s emotional stress. They must prevent Bahamut’s revival at all costs. They are freed and Favaro is so grateful that he wants to hug the king! But Amira is throwing a tantrum as she wants to go to Helheim. She kicks up a fuss about Favaro’s promise. However he reneges on it since he only said so because she put a curse on him. As he shows his tail and Rita explaining he is actually human, Kaisar is dumbfounded. I guess he really believed he was a demon. Favaro tells her off if she wants to go to Helheim, do it yourself. Oh, and undo this tail curse. Amira is so heartbroken that she slaps the liar and resigns to her room like an obedient child. The bell sounds as it is warning demons are approaching. However Jeanne easily defeats them all since she has God’s Key.

The angels discuss about Bahamut’s containment for now and it is confirmed Amira’s emotional state is vital for it. Of course they can’t afford to let humans keep the key too and Michael who chose Jeanne as the vessel will have to pay a great price. Michael remembers when she slew Amira, she felt a powerful magic protecting her. It could be the one scheming to steal the key and lift Bahamut’s curse. Amira’s goal to reach Helheim where the other key is and they believe keeping her at Anatae will make the schemer make his move. They are going to use this opportunity to expose his identity. Amira heard a voice claiming to reveal her reason of being born in this world. She follows it. Rita who isn’t fond of parties, returns to her room only to see the guards guarding Amira’s room knocked out. Kaisar is in a dilemma to fight Favaro now. He might admit he is a nefarious villain but yet he saved him. Anyway they get their little fight going. With a fork and knife? Rita beats them up to inform them that Amira is gone. As they go look for her, Favaro stumbles upon a statue of Bahamut. Jeanne is there to explain about this powerful creature that will destroy the world once its power is awakened. The world was nearly destroyed and all hopes lost when Supreme God Zeus and Demon Lord Satan transformed themselves into keys to seal it. People often come here to pray but not to Bahamut but to the prophesised saviour that will bring peace to the land if Bahamut is ever revived. Jeanne is believed to be that saviour. Favaro thinks this doesn’t involve him as he got dragged into this by a demon girl. He is just a simple bounty hunter who only loves booze, women and freedom. But Jeanne doesn’t think so. She was an ordinary girl from a remote village when the Gods gave her their blessings and awakened to her mission. Everyone is born to play a role. Thus he was destined to meet Amira for a reason. I don’t think Favaro would buy that crap. Amira is stunned that this mysterious guy has the same pendant as her. He was asked to hold it by her mom. Could it be he is her father? Another bell sounds. Azazel is leading his demon army. Playtime is over.

Episode 6.5
Wait a minute! What the heck is this recap episode for?! I was hoping there were new scenes but nope. It just plays in chronological order the events so far mostly scenes relating to Amira. From her stealing God’s Key and then crashing into those kidnappers when she was cut down, meeting Favaro and his lie to bring her to Helheim, their journey to that foggy village where Rita summoned her zombies and eventually followed Kaisar, that port adventure with Amon (for over a minute there, no dialogue in this summarized scenes) to Amira’s capture, the rescue mission inside Gregor, their retrieval at Anatae and finally that mysterious guy with the same pendant. This time we get to see his face clearer. Isn’t that Lavalley?

Episode 7
The offensive on both sides go into full force. Amira is now a happy girl after meeting her supposed father and goes off to eat. And I thought girls only feast when they’re depressed… Yeah well, she wants to continue eating despite the danger all around and won’t budge no matter how much Favaro and Kaisar pull her away. Pazuzu faces off with Jeanne while Azazel makes his way into the castle and before Favaro and co. Azazel reveals to Kaisar that he is the one who killed his father and mocks his last moments whereby everyone jeered at him. However Favaro tells him off that he is the one who killed his father. He wants Kaisar to take Amira to Helheim on his behalf. This is a showdown between demons. Of course Favaro is no match for a full demon like home although he doesn’t give up. Jeanne is on the verge of defeat when she receives magic support from her mages to revive and stab Pazuzu with her spear of light. But Pazuzu isn’t fazed with his defeat because the true goal is God’s Key. Favaro too is about to meet his doom but Kaisar returns to help him out. Don’t worry. Amira is safe in Rita’s hands. She turned dead guards into zombies to fend off other demons. So why did he come back? He isn’t going to let somebody else kill his father’s killer. Azazel laughs at his pathetic reason to let him live. In that case, it makes him the killer of both their fathers and will play with them a little longer. However Favaro disagrees. His old man died because he screwed up. He couldn’t care less about revenge or whatever reasons to give Kaisar to live. He lives for himself. Therefore Azazel isn’t his sworn enemy or anything but a rotten demon. The guys cooperate fighting mad Azazel and Favaro is now used to using his demon tail to his advantage. Although Kaisar stabs Azazel, nothing happens. Seriously, can human weapons even hurt him? Guess not. Azazel is going to kill them now as Kaisar notices Jeanne preparing her attack from a distance. He then changes his mind and wants Favaro to take Amira to Helheim. Kaisar charges at Azazel but is pushed off the ledge. This was enough time for Jeanne to fire her light and burn Azazel to a crisp. The remaining demons flee. Kaisar didn’t die, though. Favaro caught his hand. How long can he last… Rita is done with her part but finds Amira missing. You can’t leave that girl out of your sight for a second, can’t you? Seems she is looking for her father when she stumbles upon that Bahamut statue. She suddenly remembers its destructive force.

Episode 8
The pendant activates and Amira sees vision of Bahamut. She screams and then faints. The king is grateful to Jeanne and wants to give her a piece of land as reward. However she declines. But there is one thing she wants. When Amira wakes up in the company of Favaro and co, she reveals she remembers she was asleep in a cocoon for a long time. She was awakened by someone who told her to fulfil her mission so she will get to see her mother in Helheim. They are summoned before the king. Amira spots Lavalley among the guards and points out he is her father but Favaro doesn’t want her to be so hasty to go to him. Rita wonders if this means Lavalley is a demon but Kaisar refutes he is an ordinary human and a proud knight as he has met him once in Wytearp before. As part of Jeanne’s request, the king knights Kaisar and Favaro to become part of Orleans Knights. You can’t imagine how happy the former is but the latter is just rolling he is and forced to play along. Michael then descends to praise a good job they are doing. With the seal lifted, they can expect more activity from the demons. She gives Jeanne the holy sword, Precieuse that can even slay God. Sorry Mr King, you don’t get any but only their blessings. Azazel is alive although heavily injured. He is confronted by Beelzebub who burns him. Azazel is mad that he plans to betray Lucifer. What for? He will know when Judgment Day comes. The king is jealous and sad he didn’t get a sword. So much so he is seeing visions of his dead mother (somebody drugged his drink). But mother tells him to watch out for a traitor who will take his life. That traitor is Jeanne. She will kill him and rule over his land. The king’s scream is so gay! Of course the king won’t allow this to happen. Michael receives reports that the war god has been eliminated. It cannot be Azazel or Lucifer’s doing and might be the mastermind. Gabriel suggests increasing the capital’s security to prevent Amira from being kidnapped. Beelzebub reports to Lucifer about Azazel’s failure and will personally take charge of operations from now on. They cannot afford any more blunders and he will retrieve God’s Key to revive Satan.

Amira is happy when Favaro allows her to go see Lavalley. He in turn is happy to see how much she has grown in 5 years. He thanks Favaro for saving her. It’s time to reveal the truth. As Amira is both a demon and angel, this means Lavalley who is completely human is not her real father. Her mother, Nicole is however an angel. She was forbidden to return to heaven so Lavalley and his men were tasked to protect her. It was tiring fending off wave after wave of demons but the sight of seeing mother and daughter gave them a reason to go on. But one day Beelzebub attacked them and kidnapped Amira. Nicole journeyed to the demon world to find her and gave him a pendant before she left. He searched for her but to no avail. The first time he saw Amira, he knew she was Nicole’s daughter. Rita deduces Amira’s growth was due to being kidnapped by demons. This explains her childish character. But what about Nicole? Is she in Helheim? Lavalley believes not even she could last in the land where demon power is strong. He puts both pendants together and it becomes a map and compass to reveal Nicole’s location: Prudisia, the Valley of Demons. Nicole is a special person with unusual powers, thus the reason the demons want her. It may be her who can free her of that key. Lavalley apologizes he can’t go with her since he is needed here. She will bring her back so he can thank her personally. Favaro starts crying not because he is being sentimental. He can’t believe he will put an end to this tail curse. In his happiness, he says how he wished he could meet her mom once. Rita wonders if he is going to tell Kaisar about this. Don’t bother. He is happy to have reached is goal and won’t hang out with them anymore. Time for Amira’s send off. A lone dragon seems to attack the capital. Actually it is Rita controlling the zombie. This distraction allows Amira to sneak out via secret waterway. Favaro is so happy as he is going to say goodbye to her and the tail. However she signals him to come along. Eh? Why? Didn’t he say he want to meet her mother once? Oh sh*t… And so Favaro’s misadventures continue… Sometimes it pays to keep your mouth shut. Meanwhile the king is horrified that his guard’s head rolls on the floor. It’s that gay scream again.

Episode 9
Lavalley orders his men to look for Amira but privately talks to Kaisar to give him a personal army to go look for her. He tells him one of his top guards is dead and it is not done by Amira. He hopes he can catch her before the rest do as he must remain here. As Lavalley examines the king’s room, the rest of the other guards’ throat is slit. Strand of hairs is found and the king believes it is Jeanne who has come to kill him. He arrests her and although she pleads her innocence, he will not hear her. Blaming this witch for everything, now that Amira is gone, the capital will no longer be under the protection of the angels. Favaro and Amira trek through the jungle. She’s a worried girl thinking if mommy would recognize her. Suddenly they are ambushed by Kaisar’s knights. Kaisar attacks Favaro and whispers to him to play along. Suddenly a bright light absorbs them. Michael cannot hold the seal on Bahamut anymore and calls for Gabriel’s reinforcements. Jeanne is in a cell while praying as a mysterious demon goes up to her to play mind games with her that everything about her being a holy knight was a lie. Jeanne holds strong to her faith and will not listen but the pressure keeps piling as he shows her a potion that will reveal the truth if she drinks it. Tempting. Anyhow, no angels will come to her rescue.

Favaro and co are in another dimension. There is a big barb stuck so if Kaisar and Amira can’t pull it out, what makes you think Favaro could? Oh sh*t… He did! A dragon revives and he is so grateful he pulled that barb that was a thorn on his side for the last 2000 years! Eh… Does this story sound familiar? Anyway that barb belonged to Bahamut. When it was sealed, it was so powerful that it blasted to another dimension and stuck onto him. But now Bahamut is closer to revival again. He warns Amira is the key that will unlock Bahamut’s seal if brought together. Destruction will reign as it has countless times before. As they speak, Gabriel is already amassing her force likewise Beelzebub with his. Amira is sad that because of her, the world will be destroyed. Too bad. That is her fate. What about her mother? So sorry too. The only way to prevent destruction is for her to stay here forever. Amira starts crying so pitifully that it breaks your heart :’(. Now it’s Favaro’s turn to have his say. Screw this fate thing! She’s come this far so don’t give up. They can change fate however they want. He slams the barb and rips a hole in the time-space rift. Holy sh*t. He just realized he dug his grave deeper. And the rest are so awed. Can’t argue with that, can you? The dragon says they are free to do what they want as he is only an observer. He lets Favaro keep the barb as it might be possible to tear through fate. The capital is abuzz as notice of Jeanne’s execution to be burnt by the stake is put up. The king considers all those who pity her as traitors! Rita sneaks into the underground of the castle but that mysterious demon shows up. Now that Amira is at Prudisia, relishing seeing her mom, Favaro looks worried big time. The dragon told him alone that as long as Amira is the vessel, that 2000 year old miracle will not happen. Zeus and Satan are in the key form and only by the blood of a human vessel can they be manifested. Amira has blood of both God and demon. If the key and Bahamut come together, they will be permanently joined and never to be separated again. He is telling Favaro this because he said he wanted to change fate. So does he have the balls to kill Amira? How is he going to change that?

Episode 10
Rita fights the mysterious demon while Jeanne is being burnt at the stake. The people believe her to be innocent and fight their way through. The king orders the guards to kill them. Jeanne is sad that the gods are not doing anything to protect them but the angels tell her the harsh truth. Jeanne is just a vessel to serve them. God does not truly love humans. In her anger, the mysterious demon gives her drink that potion and she instantly turns into a full demon and flies away. Since Bacchus is among the crowd, Rita has something to ask of him. Explaining about a spell that turns humans into demons, he only heard of rumours about a bounty hunter possessing such much. He is believed to be obsessed with death and left mountains of corpses in his wake. Bacchus’ carriage bumps into something. It is Azazel. They pick him up and want him to spill the beans but he’s mouth is tightly zipped. Favaro and co are making their way nicely when the landscape suddenly changes. That mysterious demon turns out to be Amira’s teacher, Martinet. He says they are in Helheim instead of Prudisia. Although the compass says so, he points out they have been on their way here from the very start. The guys are caged as Martinet introduces Beelzebub who will take Satan’s place in his absence. Because Amira wants to meet her mom and take the key out inside her, Martinet suggests to go ahead. Ask her. Her mom, a splitting image of her is crystallized. She looks like in shock. Amira is hesitant but Martinet assures she is the real deal. Suddenly memories flow back into Amira. She remembers Beelzebub splitting her mom into two and the other one was her. Yes, Amira is just an imitation vessel made from this angel. Beelzebub is her true birth parent in this case. The pendant was a device created with false memories. Martinet didn’t expect she would enjoy this much and there’s more if she wants. Amira crumbles in depression. But thinking things will be back to normal if she hugs her mother, she makes her way there and does so, only for her mom to slowly disintegrate before her eyes. The key in her is now unleashed. Rita continues to press Azazel for answers. She doesn’t care about the world but only those youngsters. Azazel also agrees and proposes a deal: Take him to Abos. Beelzebub throws his spear into Amira, turning her into a Transcendent Key. The only thing left is Bahamut. There is only one option left for Favaro. He yells out in his typical betrayal fashion that he wants to join them. These guys aren’t his friends to begin with. Martinet gives him drink a potion. Favaro suddenly attacks but Martinet is familiar with his trickery and beats him up to make him drink it.

Episode 11
As Azazel reveals about Beelzebub behind this and Martinet as his aide, Rita believes Martinet may not be a demon and could be that bounty hunter that could turn humans into demons. Because when she fought him, she could see through his magic tricks. Michael believes as long as they put up this barrier, the key cannot reach Bahamut. Well, they didn’t count on Jeanne coming in to slay some of the angels! Regret giving her that sword? Although Kaisar is pushed off the cliff, he is hanging by some string. His last ditch attempt to convince Favaro not to let his spirit stoop as low as the demons fall on deaf ears. He is picked up by Bacchus’ carriage. Jeanne attacking Michael enters the scene. Jeanne turns her attention to Bacchus who in turn fights her on a now bloated flying Hamsa. Rita gives a pill to Kaisar for him to make Favaro swallow. Then they bump into that fat duck and he falls off again. Luckily Azazel picks him up since he wants to settle a score with them. Rita is trying to let Jeanne swallow her last pill but that stupid duck got in the way. She lost all hope. At least she wants some roast duck for her final meal. However Michael got the pill and puts it in Jeanne’s mouth. She returns to normal and is saddened over what she has done. But Michael says this is the price to pay for losing their direction. She reminds Jeanne she is the maiden blessed by the gods and the one who will guide the people. Michael’s physical vessel may cease to be but her spirit will always be with her. Azazel takes on Beelzebub while Kaisar tries to stop Favaro from delivering the key. As they clash, Kaisar can tell over their numerous fights, Favaro has changed into a true demon. Without hesitation, he shoots his heart. He is surprised to see Lavalley here. He claims he followed Jeanne here. Unfortunately before Rita could warn Kaisar to stay away from him, Bahamut absorbs the key and again, Kaisar gets pushed off the cliff by Lavalley. How many times has this guy fallen off? Oh, get ready for Bahamut’s revival!

Episode 12
Beelzebub is introducing himself how he’ll be the new Almighty when Bahamut turns around and blasts him! Hah! Serves him right. And he didn’t think this would actually happen to him? Rita reveals to Kaisar that from Bacchus’ info, Lavalley is the one pulling the strings behind everything. He deceived, humans, gods, demons and everybody to revive Bahamut. This includes turning Jeanne into a demon and manipulating the pendant. His real name is Gilles de Rais, a bounty hunter who has taken many lives with his gruesome sorcery. Kaisar stabs him with his sword but he is still standing. Lavalley can shape shift his face too and was the one posing as Martinet all the while. Bahamut continues to burn and destroy everything while Beelzebub laments he couldn’t control it. Azazel kills him to shut him up. Meanwhile the king is scared and praying for his mother to save him. Well, mother’s portrait fell on him. This joker… Favaro gets back up so Kaisar goes to settle the score with him after reading his lip synching. Favaro cuts off Kaisar’s left hand and shows it to Lavalley as tribute. But it is a trap because when Kaisar recites the words, Lavalley is absorbed into his band. As revealed, Favaro returned to normal when Kaisar shot him in the heart. It contained Rita’s pill that he affixed it at the end of the crossbow. So they had to throw in a little act with Kaisar going to great lengths to lose his left hand or else Lavalley won’t take the bait. Of course with Lavalley captured, he will be fatly rewarded. More than he can spend in a day. Well, if the world is still there tomorrow. Now to take care of Bahamut. Favaro is going to kill Amira. Kaisar is not happy with this joke and believes there is another way as he promised to save her but Favaro is dead serious. This is the only way. Besides, he doesn’t want her to suffer anymore. They need to end this for her. They need a way to get up there so Bacchus turns Hamsa into a giant duck for their ride.

Hamsa can’t get close or else he’ll be a roasted duck. But with the gods and demons cooperating to restrict Bahamut’s movement, this is the little chance our heroes need to get close and land on Bahamut. Once Favaro sticks the barb into the core, his outline looks very close like that statue prophesised saviour to Jeanne. Amira pops out and probably she’s not too happy waiting for him to come. But he wants his tail taken off. Just kidding. He says he’ll rush to her side whenever she is in trouble but is sorry about her mom. But Amira is okay with it because she recognized her when they hugged. Favaro wants to take her to other cool places and show her lots of cool things. Seriously. He’s not lying. Look into his serious eyes. As predicted, it turns into that funny face but instead of a slap, Amira kisses him. She thanks him and returns back into the core. Sadly, I guess this is it. Bahamut then explodes and disappears. Six months down the road, Kaisar seems to have his left hand replaced with a mechanical one and good as new. He is now the captain of the Orleans Knights and Jeanne is also reinstated back. They are to coronate a new king. Then there are small talks and rumours about how when the world was about to end at the hands (mouth rather) of Bahamut, a legendary knight appeared and banished him to another world. Does this mean Bahamut is dead? Not quite. Because Bahamut can never die and will show up again someday. Says who? Says Favaro who is leading his free spirited life. And he’s got that goatee to show us how he has matured. He rides off with Kaisar who refuses to be in his debt.

Baha-Max! Baha-Very-Good!
OMG! OMFG! This series is damn freaking good!!!!!!!!!! This is no doubt amazing. This is definitely superb stuff! No wonder I read that there were many comments ‘complaining’ why this series isn’t getting its deserved hype. Well, you can blame it by being overshadowed by other animes but on its own right, this series actually rocks! It is very interesting and engaging and even more so if you love this kind of genre of fantasy, demons and angels. At first looks, you may scoff it off as something un-anime thanks to the setting and all. But once you get into the grove, it really starts to grow on you. And I can think another reason why this series rocks it is because it is an original anime series (although I heard it is based on a card game) so there is something refreshing there as you don’t have any references to look up although some things are just predictable. But that’s not a big issue that will take your enjoyment out of it. Also, the ending was a bit rushed (because I wanted to know what happened to Rita) but after such great epic and awesomeness, this little drawback doesn’t matter.

The characters are great and they fit well in driving and developing the plot. Favaro is a very unlikely hero of the series. Heck, he is no goody-goody hero in the first place. You can tell from his scheming face that he is a selfish bastard who only lives for today and does things that only benefits himself. Despite all that, he still has a heart beneath this exterior and there are many times that he has a chance to get away with it but of course, we call it karma as it goes right back to him so technically, he gets dragged deeper into the mess instead of escaping it. Even so, deep down there is some good in him because he might not show it but he cares for Amira. It might not be when they first met but as he travels with her more often, you can sense that they become attached. Because if he was still downright selfish (which he still is), he could have just leave Amira to her fate instead of trying to change it. Or maybe it was just spur of the moment for him to say that destiny changing crap before he realized the deep sh*t he got into. But hey, at least it proves that he isn’t all that bad, although he is mostly. Also, I keep wondering if Favaro is cured of his demon tail in the end. Maybe that kiss undo it. At least he should show us his butt to confirm it ;p.

Kaisar first started out as some annoying guy. I mean, this pretty boy seems to be running around yelling Favaro’s name in the name to reclaim his family honour gets to you after a while (heck, even in the final scene he is still yelling his name). You know that they share some sort of unfavourable history together, something that turned sour along the way but with his constant persistence of hunting him down just felt irritating. Then he might look silly because of his penchant to talk about his family’s past honour but when are in his shoes, what is else left to do? So from childhood friends to great enemies and now back to being best friends again. Well, that’s life for them. You can call it destiny or fate but I think to these guys, they are more likely to believe they chart their own fates and carve their own destinies.

I don’t know, ever since Rita joined the group, it feels like she is having fun in her own way. She might be the brains and calm rational voice of the group despite looking like a zombie. Thought to ponder: If Bahamut successfully destroys the world, will Rita still be alive because she is an undead. Technically, she cannot die. This means she is as immortal as Bahamut! But aren’t we lucky that she doesn’t crave for world destruction because she could easily turn everybody into her zombie slave and that itself is world destruction. She is probably the best character of the series because she’s cool and doesn’t do emotional outbursts like the rest. Oh wait. Do zombies have feelings?

It goes to show that heroes do not necessarily come in the form of a white knight in shining armour. A carefree bandit, a fallen knight and a zombie are what it takes to save the world from yet another destruction. Heck, angels and demons can’t do the job. God and Satan can only do so much as seals. So despite their flawed characters, you can’t help realize that you want to cheer and support them on when the going gets tough. You don’t know how they’ll get out of their sticky predicament, but you’ll know they just will. And you’ll have that satisfying and relieved look when they do.

It was bittersweet ending for Amira because we have grown accustomed to her with Favaro and Kaisar that even in the last moments, you hope that Favaro would come up and think of some unconventional way to save her. I mean, he did say he is going to change fate, right? So I thought he wasn’t going to listen to that old dragon’s words and find a way around it. Guess not. Guess that surprised us. But overall, Amira herself is imperfect. There are many sides to her. From her badass side transforming into a half angel and half demon to kick ass to a naive and childish side because all she really wants is to see her mother again. Then there is her funny side and I think her unlimited appetite is made as a running joke. I think we can blame Favaro for this one because it seems after he introduced her to booze and food, it’s like things she is unsure of, could it be eaten?

Bacchus and Hamsa’s role aren’t pretty clear but the way I see it, they somehow fit to be like comical side characters from Disney. Really. I mean, when you look at that talking duck, he exudes this kind of feeling that you would normally only see in a Disney movie that has a lively talking animal sidekick. Doesn’t Hamsa fit that role very well? Otherwise, I don’t see what this duck’s role in this anime except for the running joke that Amira wants to eat him. Even zombie girl like Rita too eventually. Must taste good, no? I mean, do you ever felt the urge to eat Nemo? The rest of the other characters are okay and help in the development of the plot like Jeanne and Lavalley (I knew there was more to this knight than he looks) but some you’ll be left wondering what their purpose is for like Azazel (was it just to kill Beelzebub and let him have revenge? Couldn’t they just let Bahamut do the job?) and that sexy demon, Cerberus who went out of the scene halfway through the series and only made a cameo in the final episode for a handful of seconds just to show us she is around.

This might be trivial but I kept thinking that the big bad boss of the series that is even named after doesn’t get to move around much and stays dormant and sealed in his place. Isn’t that the big irony? The only time he gets to move is when he is freed in the final episode and even so, he doesn’t really move from his spot and it’s like just cameo. Why should he? He can just blast and destroy everything with his fire breath from where he stands right up till the heavens and right down to the underworld. So if you’re picky, you’d be wondering while watching the entire series where the heck is Bahamut’s rage anyway? The past doesn’t count, by the way. And since Favaro has ‘hinted’ that Bahamut is eternal and would one day return, does this mean there is hope for a sequel! I sure hope so!

Action plays a very important part of this series and I can say that they are all perfectly executed well. At least they are satisfying enough to keep your eyes glued to the screen. Some have that comical effect and nature added into the mix while some are intensely serious. Either way, you won’t regret watching the action bits. With lots of magic, wits and luck (for our puny humans, that is), it is no wonder that this series is a great fun to watch. Even if you know that it is going to be predictable (oh come on. Anybody would have guessed that an unlikely hero is going to save the day), it is still fun and intense to watch. Every bit of it.

The art and drawing may seem a little different than you conventional anime. Because with the fantasy setting and the main pair of characters that are introduced to us in the first episode, one may quickly jump to conclusions that this series has got some American or western influence or something. Firstly, Favaro already looks like a clown with his orange afro. Other characters like the king, Lavalley and Bacchus have this ‘American’ feel thanks to their big stature. Oddly, some demons like Azazel and Lucifer have anime bishonen pretty boy looks. I don’t know if it is the trademark art of this series because the way they draw the lips of the characters. For female characters they look fine, but when drawn on males, they look like pretty boys. Because it looks like they’re wearing lipstick! I mean, take a look at Kaisar. He looks more like a pretty boy than anything. Like as though he is the pretty boy version of Space Dandy’s titular character. See the striking resemblance there? Then you see Lavalley with those kind of lips. You wonder if he is such an effeminate guy. Cerberus’ design is also cute and amusing because as we know it is supposed to be a 3 headed dog that guards the gate of hell but instead you have a cute sexy demon lady with even cuter furry doggy hand puppets. It’s like she loves playing hand puppetry and speaking on their behalf. But character designs aside, the backgrounds and sceneries are quite good and fit well especially with this fantasy setting. Oh, and Bahamut being animated via using CGI graphics and in 3D isn’t that bad either.

I think something must be wrong with my ears. I thought Miyuki Sawashiro was voicing the roles of Amira, Rita and Jeanne. I don’t know. They sound so close to me. But something was off. Till I later found out that she only voiced Rita. Amira is voiced by Risa Shimizu (Shiori in La Corda D’Oro Blue Sky) and Jeanne is played by Megumi Han (titular character in Mushibugyou). Then there is the familiar voice in Favaro who is no other than Hiroyuki Yoshino. I guess with his joker voice, it is no doubt that he plays joker characters and make them sound so convincing like Saruyama in To Love-Ru, Bossun in Sket Dance and Meow in Space Dandy. Eri Kitamura was also recognizable as Cerberus. Other casts include Go Inoue as Kaisar (Sky High in Tiger & Bunny), Masakazu Morita as Azazel (Barnaby Brooks AKA Bunny in Tiger & Bunny), Kenjiro Tsuda as Martinet (Mikoto in K), Ryuuzaburou Ootomo as Beelzebub (Crocodile in One Piece), Hiroshi Iwasaki as Bacchus (Clay in Hitsugi No Chaika: Avenging Battle), Showtaro Morikubo as Hamsa (Shikamaru in Naruto), Hiroaki Hirata as Lavalley (Sanji in One Piece), Shouta Aoi as Michael (Ai in Uta No Prince-sama: Maji Love 2000%) and Ayumi Fujimura as Gabriel (Eiko in Shinryaku! Ika Musume). In short, the voice acting is great and does justice to fit the characters.

Upon hearing the opening theme, you’ll be blasted away. Because Existence by Sim is truly a mother f*cking hard punk heavy metal acid rock music (and whatever you want to put in) that has the singer screaming from the top of his voice! Really screaming like hell! Yeah, you can’t even hear a damn thing of what he screams. I don’t know if it was meant to be that way. But this ‘noisy’ rock music that is sung entirely in English is definitely befitting of this series despite I am not particularly fond of this music genre. But having this as the opener really does get you into the mood. As for the ending theme, it is a very beautiful ballad sung by Risa Shimizu, Promised Land. (Again, I thought it was Miyuki Sawashiro behind that voice). Although a complete opposite from the opener, this song also fits the series as an ending theme well after all that action, drama, revelation, etc. Sometimes it is beautiful enough that it wants to make you sing along. Likewise the background music and soundtrack are great and definitely fit, if not boost the epic-ness of this series.

Overall, this is absolutely a great series. It might not be a masterpiece but it is definitely an epic fantasy adventure done right. Whether you are fans or not of this genre or kind of story, this is absolutely a must watch. You won’t be disappointed. This could easily be your top 3 anime of the year and probably top 10 of the decade. At the end of it all, you would be craving for more and even hoped that Bahamut would have destroyed the world and then restart it again in another alternate time so that we can have a sequel and another set of approach-cum-adventure to put it down. Therefore if I could go on such an awesome adventure myself, I wouldn’t mind seeing the world getting destroyed over and over again. It isn’t a bad thing to relive the awesomeness again and again, no?

Trinity Seven

June 27, 2015

Now, isn’t this the oxymoron? It is listed in the synopsis of Trinity Seven that this series is a “romantic comedy but sometimes serious magic school story”. How can you have something serious in a comedy? I don’t know. But I need to check it out. Because if it goes back and forth between laughter and serious melodrama, it’s got to be funny, right? Yeah, it’s funny how they toy with our emotions. Oh, did I mention about the harem factor? I suspect this is the main reason that lured me into watch this… Okay, it is. If you really care about the plot (which I suppose many won’t), let me just summarized it in a few sentences. A weird magical phenomenon occurs. Everybody disappears. Including a previous family member of our guy. Need to be strong to rescue her. Enrols in magic school. Meets 7 lovely strongest babes. Wow! Seven cuties?! I can see why he wants to enrol here.

Episode 1
Arata Kasuga is dreaming about trying to catch someone’s hand. Turns out he caught the boobs of his cousin and childhood friend, Hijiri instead. And he dares ask what’s for breakfast. You mean that wasn’t it? You know Hijiri is the kind of girl who didn’t grow up to fawn over Arata or want him as his bride. Therefore Arata always finds it fun teasing her especially that happy kiddie drawing of hers. Along the way to school, he notices the sun is black. Has it always been that way? A girl passes him, telling him to wake up now or she will have to kill him. At the school’s rooftop, he continues to ponder the black sun. Hijiri says it has always been that way before he was born. Something feels odd about her. She adds this is the world he wished for and as long as she is here, he can do anything he wants to her. Gee, that’s a big turnaround from this morning’s reaction. He wonders if she is the true Hijiri and asks a series of simple questions. Finally, the colour of the sun. Black. Then how come in this kiddie drawing, the sun is of a different colour? The cat’s out of the bag. Where is the true Hijiri? A shot is fired at her. That girl who is a mage, Lilith Asami claims Cracker has appeared. The world is returned back to its original state. Desolated and doomed. Void of people. Seems it happened 3 days ago when the sun turned black and its rays absorbed people. That is when Arata starts to remember. Hijiri gave him a little grimoire and doesn’t want him to forget about her. Nothing like a goodbye kiss before you vanish, eh? Because he cannot take this reality, he made a wish on the grimoire to create this fake world. Because that is a dangerous grimoire (normal grimoires cannot do this), Lilith gives Arata 2 choices: 1) Dispose of the grimoire which includes erasing his memoires of Hijiri and others so he could live; or 2) Die now. Not much of a choice, eh? Arata confirms with Cracker that Hijiri is alive in some space-time rift (a reason why she could take on her appearance). So that guy is going to make and take his third choice: 3) He’ll be keeping the grimoire and his life. Also, he wants to study and become a mage like her.

He is brought to Royal Biblia Academy. As Lilith (she is a teacher) introduces the new transfer student in class, Selina Sherlock spams him a bunch of questions that he doesn’t hesitate to answer. This includes the world he created. With that, the entire class is abuzz that he is a demon lord candidate because you only have to be that to make such crazy magic. Lilith then takes him to see the headmaster who explains about their secret organization funded by the government to investigate unsolved and potentially magic related cases. He warns Arata this school has got 7 ‘bosses’ known as Trinity Seven. They are mages excelling in their own fields. Lilith is one of them. If he manages to make some of them his pawn, he’ll figure out what mages are quickly. Outside, he sees Levi Kazama hiding on the ceiling (I thought the disguise was poorly done). She is also one of Trinity Seven and specializes in ninja magic arts (including arts of the bedroom!). Passing outside are a couple of Trinity Seven so Levi briefly explains to him about Mira Yamana and Akio Fudou. Then they continue teasing Lilith because she blushes so easily. Back in his room and as he takes a bath, he notices Hijiri before him. Naked. No reaction. It’s like she’s giving him a free show. Damn those steam censors. So much so he has to play the straight guy and get embarrassed by her nakedness. He runs out when he can no longer take the fanservice. Lilith was passing by and heard. She clarifies that girl is Arin Kannazuki and one of the Trinity Seven. She looks very close to Hijiri (just take away her emotions and you have Arin). He feels Arin is connected to Hijiri and thus Trinity Seven is going to be important to him. But first, he needs to put on some pants or Lilith will continue to blow her top!

Episode 2
Arin is staring and following Arata all day. Creepy. She notes it is the demon lord candidate she is watching and will always be doing so because one day she will become his wife. He returns to his room only to see Lilith, Levi and Selina waiting. Selina wants to interview him. After a few rounds of teasing that sounds like making fun of Lilith, Arata wants to know about this grimoire. According to the headmaster, Astil Codex is a powerful that is believed to house knowledge from another world. Nothing much is known about it. Lilith points out a mage needs a research theme called Thema. It is based on the seven deadly sins. Suddenly they find themselves trapped in a barrier. The space was tight enough to give Arata some fanservice of the girls before Codex dispels a little of the spell to make some room for them. It seems they are in some barrier and being cut off from the space they were in. It is suggested to take this as an escape game and find a way out. He has an idea who is behind this. As they look around, they realize that there is no bathroom here. Because Lilith really needs to go to one. Shortly, Levi too. So as not to be left out, Levi hypnotizes Selina! Now you have the girls with that wanna-go-toilet feeling. Arata seeks Codex’s help to find the exit but since she won’t, he tricks her saying that they have figured it out and don’t need her help. Codex falls for it and wonders if they have found the exit underneath the bed. Wait a minute, this small room and they couldn’t find it? Where were they searching? Anyway once they blasted the barrier, they’re back into the original world and the girls dash to the toilet.

As he is about to ask about Thema, Arin comes in to explain about Thema, something a mage spends their whole life researching. By executing what they learn through research, they can use magic as spells. Arata lets her check Codex and they get a little acquainted (badmouthing Arata as a pervert anyway). Arin explains she did this barrier trap to test him since he is the demon lord candidate. This means he is a bad guy, right? At least that is what the headmaster told her. Before the headmaster could join them with his silly antics, they ignore him and walk away to go somewhere to talk. With Lilith around (otherwise Arata cannot tolerate Arin’s jokes and have to become the straight guy. With Lilith here, she plays the straight guy for him), she further explains a demon lord candidate can cause a breakdown phenomenon. She demonstrates by having Arata put his palm on hers. It calls for Ira Archive as Arin explains her Thema is Ruina AKA destruction. Arin has destroyed the grimoire’s control over magic so it can no longer hold him. Arata is in pain as the entire school is about to be turned into elementary particles. Arin won’t stop even if she is going to destroy the entire world since this is part of her research. She wants to know what is beyond this destruction and as his wife, she will not allow even Lilith to stop this. But it all calms down when Mira and Akio return to neutralizes it. Mira is using her Thema of Iustita (justice) from the archive of Superbia AKA pride for this as she won’t allow impurities before her. She orders Akio to kill Arata who is the source of the breakdown phenomenon.

Episode 3
Suddenly… Arata and co are working at a beach house as punishment for destroying the school which is in the midst of being repaired by the headmaster. And of course this means you can’t leave out fanservice especially with everyone loving to tease Lilith in her bikini. Now we go into flashback mode to see what happened. After Akio supposedly killed Arata, the breakdown phenomenon continues. It means he is still alive. Yes, he is. Right now he is in another dimension and is lured by the violin play of Yui Kurata. He is explained what is going on as the breakdown phenomenon is absorbing weaker people. Lilith and co are holding up with their barrier but that won’t last long. Of course Arata needs to do something about it so Yui explains more about Thema and the deadly sins in those archives. Thinking about Mira’s archive, he gets an idea what to do. Back into reality, he tells Codex his Thema that he wants control over other magic. Codex makes a contract with him and as Arata turns into Magus Mode, he makes all the magic here disappear. It vanishes in an instant. This includes all the girls’ clothes! Only Mira is fully clothed because she reflected his magic back at him. That means he is now naked. And so back at the beach house, Arata is bragging about his new technique. Levi continues to taunt and fondle Lilith’s boobs till she threatens to fire her gun. Later, Selina wants Arata to demonstrate his power. This is so she can test out her magic to seal his. However Arata could break free and destroy her magic with ease. And her clothes too.

Levi and Selina think they hear something steamy coming from Lilith’s room. Has Arata finally done it? Sorry to disappoint you girls but actually since Arata is happy he has his own magic, he wants to go save Hijiri. But first, time to deepen their bond and hang out at the mixed hotspring. Sure, it mixes both genders but of course Arata would have come to expect that nothing is free so the girls are in their swimsuits instead of being naked. Arata wonders the remaining Trinity Seven. He was told one of them is Yui whom is hard to meet since you can only talk to her in dreams. Then there is the last one whom they didn’t say but went missing before Arata enrolled here. I can guess who that last one is related to. Selina and that reaction… The girls discuss about Arata trying to control his magic so as not to turn people around him naked. Maybe pinpoint it and make it a gun or sword. Arata wants Lilith to lend her gun but she won’t since it uses her magic to materialize. Besides, magic isn’t about showing off. Since he is sincerely bowing his head, she gives him and shows him. Arata then asks Codex if she can copy that. She successfully materializes a revolver for him. What she did was copied Lilith’s magic and rewrote it for Arata. The girls are in shock as they realize Arata is able to use magic of other mages.

Episode 4
When Arata enters class, he sees everyone sleeping. No, they’re not boycotting lessons. As the headmaster says, it is breakdown phenomenon and all those with weak magic enter sleep mode. Since the magic is coming from the academy’s dungeon underground, they figure it belongs to Yui. On the way, the girls explain to her how powerful her magic is and thus the need to seal it. Otherwise it is the end of the world. It is possible she was influenced by the demon lord candidate and it could mean Arata is partially responsible for this. They have to get to her first before Mira and Akio because those b*tches only know how to kill. They encounter shadow demons from another dimension who want to eat them. Arin puts up her barrier as Arata can’t materialize his gun. Codex doesn’t remember. Even if she did finally, she turned into some space gun that doesn’t work but only ripped Lilith and Arin’s clothes. When the demons get too close, Levi cuts them all up with her ninja skills. Shouldn’t she have done this in the first place? Going deeper, Lilith thought Arata was molesting her but it turns out to be little demons. Arin destroys them so Arata wants Codex to copy that. However she says he didn’t achieve some process first so it’s impossible. Looks like there is some prerequisite if he wants to copy something. Hmm… What was it? No, it’s not staring at boobs! Although those demons are easy for Levi to take on, the real fight begins when she has to face Mira and Akio. Levi’s wind magic causes Mira’s skirt to flip up. Arata saw her bunny print panties and this ‘incapacitates’ her as they move on while letting Levi to handle Akio. When they open the door to Yui’s room, lots of poison aura flow out and a nasty dragon is guarding her. Arata notices Yui looks different and as told, the one he saw in the dream is her ideal form.

Arata starts to feel pain and it is believed his magic is resonating with the dragon’s. He is after all the demon lord candidate. Lilith’s gun didn’t do any damage. Mira and Akio join in. Levi didn’t get defeated. They form a truce to take down the dragon first. Levi pulls Arata aside and gives him directions to soothe his pain. Though Levi will fight the dragon, she wants Arata to join in. As someone who can erase breakdown phenomenon, he will be facing more fights like this if he intends to save Hijiri. Arata wants her to teach him how to fight. I don’t understand what this expectation Thema Levi has as well as magic is the needs to think of something that is furthest from what he considers rational. Lilith takes over the lecture and wants him to decide on a spell first. And then something about alchemy and its material exchange, blah, blah, blah… However Arata must be cautious not to overuse his magic because it will go out of control and devour him. Like those shadow demons. He is more prone to it since he is a demon lord candidate. When that happens, he’ll be a more difficult enemy to handle than this dragon who is already the strongest of the Phantasms. Levi ends the lecture by telling him to imagine his hand like a gun. Then she licks it for fanservice as well as to put her magic on it. Codex is able to process whatever it was and materializes a gun powerful enough to kill the dragon in one freaking powerful shot! When Yui wakes up, she is so happy thinking Arata came to rescue her that she starts hugging and loving him. Hmm… Only Lilith is the one reacting jealous and saying something.

Episode 5
Arata is in a dilemma. He wakes up to find 2 babes sleeping by his side: Yui and Arin. So when Lilith comes in, he figures it out. She should join in! During PE, Yui continues to cling and flirt with him and likewise to same for Arin who doesn’t want to lose out. But here comes Mira to ruin the mood. She claims they were lucky last time but if anything similar happens the next time, she will take care of them in the name of Grimoire Security. I don’t know how, it then descends into a fight over Arata. Isn’t this what we want to see? But when Yui executes her Thema, Arata finds himself in Yui’s dream. Everyone else is asleep. Except Mira. There’s this talk about friendship that I couldn’t care less but Arata wants Yui to be his friend (because who would want to pass up a chance to be friends with a cutie?) and this makes her happy. She allows him to do anything lewd to her and he is about to take the chance but Lilith stops him. Even in unconscious mode she can do this?! Before they return to reality, Yui pecks his cheek. Now they look like a lovely couple cuddling together on the infirmary’s bed. Mira is worried not about Arata being the impure one or in a dilemma having feelings for him (we hope she would), but the recent events of more and more people losing magic and becoming demons. She thinks it may have something to do with him and thus the need to destroy the strongest and most impure being. Naturally, it always goes back to him, huh? That night, a strange phenomenon occurred as all the school’s windows are broken. Of course Arata and Yui are the main suspects as they have very strong magic power but Mira detects it is not from them. This magic feels like what they experienced at that library.

As some Trinity Seven girls explain to him, it might be a ghost. It was raining heavily on that day but a pair of twins stayed back at the library. The windows suddenly broke and the books keep falling down. When it is over, the elder twin was missing. It is rumoured that till this day, you can see the ghost of that twin! This happened 6 months ago before Arata came. With Arata trying to help out the investigation at the library, suddenly the entire space is teleported to another dimension. Somebody forcefully transported them to this Eternal Library. Even at such times, Arata can be a real pervert. I don’t know how his hands got over Selina’s boobs. She pushes him down not because she wants to get steamy but to save him from an attack. Before Arata’s eyes is someone looking like Selina but a lot sexier and badass. If you couldn’t guess who she is by now, then don’t worry because Selina explains that is her elder twin sister, Lieselotte Sherlock. The one who went missing and became the rumoured ghost. This ex-Grimoire Security girl was trying to connect Eternal Library, an act that was forbidden. She tries to take everyone’s magic but Selina can use Logos Art to predict her moves. Arata, can you please stop trying to flirt at this moment or admire Lieselotte’s legs? It’s getting serious. She explains about magic being inhuman and thus calling it taboo in the first place is nonsense. Thus getting the demon lord’s power would also mean committing taboo. She bites Selina’s neck to steal her magic. There was a demon lord element sealed in Eternal Library. Not that she has got it, she is now a demon lord candidate.

Episode 6
Selina has fallen ill and a demon lord seal on her neck. Lieselotte claims she doesn’t want to do all the study and research before turning into a demon lord. She wants to take the easy way. Just like Arata. He also agrees with her but not to the point of stealing his friend’s magic. He summons his gun to show off but Lieselotte has analyzed his strong magic. She knows about him because she has Selina’s research. Unlike him who copies from others, she steals from those whose magic she takes. She invites him to join her side. She also hints she knows about Hijiri and if he wants more, join her. As he is stunned, she kisses him. Poison kiss. But it was the stimulating kind to her. The kind of scene that is right after some sex porn. After absorbing his magic, her power grows powerful enough to rip some of the girls’ clothes (except Levi and Mira). It always has to come down to this, huh? While Mira tries to scan her magic, Levi buys her time and fights her. When it’s time to give Lieselotte a taste of her medicine, thanks to Arata’s absorbed magic, she managed to get away from that devastating blast. Selina’s condition is getting worse and if they don’t get her magic back, she’ll die. Arata is okay thanks to Codex protecting him. As Levi continues to fight Lieselotte, the latter is surprised the former could keep up with her movements. She realized that because she has not mastered this new technique yet, no matter how powerful she is, she is still like an amateur. So it’s a draw for the time being. She’ll be back once she masters it. Everyone is returned to the school’s library.

Mira hates to admit it but she views Arata’s power necessary to help defeat Lieselotte. So it’s not about a confession? You wish. She and Akio are going to train him. Akio relentlessly pound him while he is reduced to just evading. He needs to figure it all out by himself or die. Better hurry. I don’t know how but after all that blasting, Arata somehow got his hands over Mira’s boobs. He knows what is going to (bloody) happen to him so he is giving his thanks. On a serious note, they hint that he doesn’t need to be like one of them to fight as he is also unique and possess some moves of his own like that clothes ripping and gun materializing move. Selina’s condition has stabled thanks to Yui’s violin. Levi is injured and the rest are not powerful enough to fight. Thus it is bad timing for Lieselotte to return and attack the school now. She has shadow demons descend on the school and probably to make us viewers happy as some of the girls’ clothes get ripped and almost tentacle raped in some yuri position. The headmaster will have to help deal with this since most of the Trinity Seven are in no condition to protect the school while Mira and Akio are away obsessed with training Arata. Lieselotte thinks she can fight the headmaster but she is awfully mistaken as he is more powerful than her. He even lectures her a few tips on how to fight powerful mages like him as he demonstrates how easily he could break out from her magic. No sweat at all. Lieselotte is impressed of how cool he is, not making any moves and just smiling as usual like he always does. She sees true fear when a horde of demons appear behind him. That smile just turned demonic.

Episode 7
That is his grimoire, Solomon’s Gate and is told not to look too long or else she’ll go crazy. How do you defeat a high level mage like him? Lieselotte shows her boobs and this got that guy going crazy! Instant defeat! So easy. Of course this is no cause for alarm since he is going to let the rest handle it and based on history, evil mages that obtain power always lose. Arata continues to take a beating from Akio. Codex mentions about finishing copying her magic. Once done the processing, Codex materializes into a loli version named Sora. Lieselotte easily walks into a direct and simple trap set by Levi at the infirmary. After all, it has no magic. Cutting herself loose, she goes to Selina’s side mentioning she wanted to bring her along to the dark side. It won’t be possible now. Selina suggests a bet. If Arata beats her, she must give up being an evil mage and return here. But sentimental time is over since Lieselotte is going to eat all their magic and defeat the headmaster. Before she could, she is stopped by a dragon from Arata. Flashback shows that she used his fist to place a mantra from Akio. She told him that will is important in using her magic otherwise it will hurt him. She also passes him some spell called Conception to teach that naughty girl a lesson. Arata saw her past before she collapsed. Lieselotte’s top accidentally comes undone and it descends into some farce about Arata’s dream of looking at Trinity Seven naked. While they’re at that, Lieselotte’s magic replenishes and is going to take his. Sora wants Arata to touch Lieselotte’s chest with his mantra to eat her demon lord power. However she is too fast for him. Thanks to Arata reinforcing the mantra to harden his body, her attacks cannot pierce through him. She gets series and freezes time. Only she, Arata and Sora can move. However those frozen cannot be hurt because matters of different time flow cannot affect each other. This means Arata can’t strip their clothes…

Lieselotte will kiss and steal his magic like the last time but he is not panicking. He’ll take on the challenge. As he tries to get her, he is too slow as Lieselotte freezes him. Then a hot kiss. However she feels pain and weakens. The mantra on his fist is fake. The real one is in his tongue. The will he put in it was Akio’s past. Looks like she was a nun and constantly praying. He hugs her to eat the rest of her demon lord powers. Just like the other girls, he wants her to come back and not seclude herself in this lonely monochrome world. However she cannot do that. It is a price to pay for using this magic. All for the sake of her research. A genuine kiss to him for caring. She says goodbye as she gets sealed away in another time. If they meet, she’ll let him touch her boobs naked. Hope next time comes fast? When time resumes, Lilith cannot believe Arata is touching her boobs. He knows he is done for so he gives his thanks for the delicious meal. When the girls learn what has happened, Mira asks Sora about the Logos Art process that Arata has completed. Since he is almost there, Mira wants Selina to train Arata to master it quickly so that they can retrieve Lieselotte as soon as possible. They call her a tsundere although Mira asserts she wants her punished. The headmaster notes that everything has worked out. But he receives a report that the school to the west has been completely annihilated. Looks like the evil mages are on the move.

Episode 8
Arata seems to be going around asking for the girls’ help to study and some in return do not hesitate to get flirty with him as reward. Lilith is surprised about his diligence and thought he was a different person. He is trying to study hard to master the remaining Logos Art to quickly save Lieselotte. The headmaster calls for them. Time for a little fanservice when he bumps into Mira and sees her panties. No more bunny prints? I know what’s going to happen to him next. Since when can Arata fly? The headmaster wants to make Arata as part of the security but Mira is against this perverted joining. He believes he has the grades for it and also he is worried the next mission will be tough. During Lieselotte’s attack, the magic school to the west, Royal Liber Academy was completely destroyed. They are to investigate and destroy any breakdown phenomenon they find. Lilith will also join this team since she is in charge of Arata and wants her to teach him all about it before they leave. So the rest of the Trinity Seven find out as Arata learns the deadly sins that each of them specialize and belong too. Lilith is embarrassed to say her lust of Luxuria Archive because true enough, the rest start teasing her that she is going to give Arata hot private lessons with her hot body. However as their Thema is the furthest thing from them, they don’t actually take on the traits of those sins and are complete opposite. Lilith becomes his private tutor to teach him what he needs to know. It must be hard work since she falls asleep.

Mira and Akio come to check on them only to see Sora over Arata. They know Mira always flusters seeing this kind of stuffs and it doesn’t help that they act nonchalantly about it. Serious talk about their mission turns into one about Mira perhaps trying to seduce Arata with this night visits. And what was it about her nipples? A cockroach crawls nearby so this freaks her out. This wakes up Lilith as she sees Mira on top of Arata. It’s not his fault and yet he gets blasted by her bazooka. Everyone takes a deserved break at the hotspring. Lilith takes Arata to view a scenic view of the city. It’s the best way to help his mind and body relax. This is also a reward for doing a good job with his studies as well as with Yui and Lieselotte’s case. They start splashing water at each other and the other girls could only watch in envy. But Sora had to ruin the fun as she cuts the strap off Lilith’s bikini top. I suppose this wasn’t part of the reward. Oh dear. He’s going to get a taste of that bazooka again. Whether he is fully rested or not, it’s time to depart. At the warp station, the headmaster is going to beam them directly there when a disturbance occurs. Somebody is trying to interrupt the teleportation and if that happens, they’ll be stuck in some space-time rift. The headmaster shows why he is one of the best mages around and successfully teleports them although only Arata, Sora and Mira are before Liber. But they are shocked that the building is still standing. Wasn’t it destroyed? They sense that they might be in another space. More surprise for Arata when Hijiri is there. Is she the real deal? Mira senses her magic isn’t human and tries to reveal her true form. Hijiri feels she isn’t ready to take on this power yet and leaves.

Episode 9
Sora explains that is Iliad Fragment AKA Ilia and is a grimoire like her. She is the one who copied Hijiri’s form and memories and played her part while Arata created his own world. As for why Liber is still standing, it seems it has been transported and trapped in another dimension. Now they are floating in a rift in the sea of parallel dimensions. They are confronted with shadow demons. When Mira tries to attack them, her clothes automatically got ripped! Finally, the nakedness got to her. Seems there is a spell that Magus Mode is sealed here so fighting them with magic is not a wise idea. Since Sora is purely a magical entity, she’ll do what she can while Arata take Mira out of here. Soon Sora faces off with Ilia. Although Sora uses a powerful move, this renders her open and thus she fell into Ilia’s trap and got sealed inside a mini black box. Meanwhile we are so annoyed at Mira being so suspicious and flustering over Arata that he might give in to his perverted side. For example, they need to check the clock tower for the barrier’s core and are about to climb a ladder. She doesn’t want him to look up to see her naked butt but how can he do so if she’s going first? If he goes first, he might not be able to stop any traps. So how? Arata compromises by carrying her on her back. He wonders about her justice Thema because you know, Thema is supposed to be furthest from your character. Was she a delinquent? Mira explains her powerful magic caused her to be isolated and thus she had no friends. Till Akio became the first one and they did many things together. Mira failed a magic experiment she tried to do by herself so Akio told her to just use it boldly instead of trying to keep it a secret from others. Those words rooted deeply within her as Mira vowed to become someone who could take responsibility for the powers they had and be an agent of justice. Besides Mira spamming Arata an impure man as always, he is happy he gets to see her as herself. This talk was so that she could get her mind off things.

When they reach the top, they see Sora trapped in the mini black box. Before them is Ilia who claims that she has sealed everything and will wait till Hijiri destroys everything. Only they will be together forever in this dimension. Sora telepathically communicates to Arata that she is being held in a core barrier which is also the space of this school. She wants him to buy her time so that she can try to destroy it and collapse the school. Arata negotiates with Ilia to let Mira go since she doesn’t need her. Mira doesn’t appreciate this self sacrifice but Arata plays it cool she needs to figure a way to rescue him after she escapes. Arata goes up to Ilia and wants to know if Hijiri really wants to destroy this world. Indeed she does. For whatever reasons, it is best to ask her personally. Ilia prepares to kill Mira (she didn’t say about letting her go scot free, right?) since there is no way to let her out of here. She also guessed that Sora tried to telepathically communicate with him. Do not underestimate the thinking of a girl in love with him. Arata is horrified to see the girls start screaming. And then he looks back at Ilia with death stares. It makes her scared. All he wanted was for the girls he likes to keep smiling. If he is going to be trapped in her magic, he can’t ‘control’ anything anymore and this sucks. Sora tells Ilia to stop Arata right now. But too late. Arata transforms into his demon lord form, the entity hidden within him, Astral Trinity.

Episode 10
You want to know how powerful this Astral Trinity is? Why, he turns Ilia naked and tells her this is what true control is about! Now that he has taken control of this space, Mira could feel her energy coming back. But when she and Sora charge at him, he instantly rips their clothes! Wow! All girls naked now! He views Mira as a potential to be his wife and is about to kiss her but she slaps him and claims he is not Arata and thus have nothing to give him. This tsundere attitude causes the demon lord to waver so Sora quickly seals his magic and turns Arata back to normal. They discuss the quickest way to get out of here is to defeat Ilia but since he doesn’t want to do that, he’ll just have her tell them a way out. Though, he doesn’t mind spending eternity with her here, he wants to see Hijiri personally. Also, he won’t get to thank her for thanking care of him in her stead. Ilia couldn’t believe that they’re still fooling around in this grave situation. Well, the girls believe in Arata’s luck and that with cooperation, they are sure to get out. Ilia decides to support and give him her magic. This calms and stabilizes Arata’s magic. Then everyone fires all they’ve got at the black sun which is the source of this problem. Back in the real world, Arata collapses onto Lilith’s boobs since he has completely run out of power. Akio could tell something good has happened since Mira is calling Arata by his name. As usual, the tsundere has excuses… Lilith notices Arata has another grimoire in possession and also feels someone is watching them. Sure it is. Hijiri in the flesh. She notes Arata is going to be her enemy. As Arata is resting, Mira explains the danger when Arata turned into the demon lord. Akio suggests killing him off. Mira is the first to show he concern. Of course Akio won’t since the rest of the girls would be mad at her. Besides, she is fond of him too. Talking about Ilia, they believe Hijiri was her former owner and the culprit who destroyed Liber. Since she is a high level mage and Arata a demon lord, it could be more than just coincidence.

When Arata wakes up, the real Hijiri is by his side and she is happy he could recognize her. She is also glad he turned into a mage to save her although he apologized that he couldn’t save her back then. Since he is a powerful demon lord candidate, he is going to make sure he saves her this time. It is also the reason why Hijiri is going to kill him now. Lilith’s shot disrupts the moment. She senses Hijiri has demon lord element and a candidate too. She got it when she was sent to that ruined world. She manifests clothes from the Ira Archives to become Satan. There are 3 Thema that she has mastered and thus qualified to be called Trinity. Lilith quickly goes to protect Arata because he will die if he gets hit by her powers as he has none. Hijiri will kill him and take his powers and grimoire so she might recreate him someday. Well, he prefers if she didn’t kill him. She fires a blast but is deflected by Arin. Seems she heard her husband calling (did he?) and was able to use whatever magic that was to teleport herself here. With Mira and Akio coming in as reinforcements, Hijiri wants to play with them since most of them are here instead of sealing them in darkness. They, Iscariot will head to their school and destroy it. Better hurry back fast if they don’t want their beloved school to be flattened. Even as they speak, Biblia is under attack. They can’t get back fast enough with Arata in this condition. But that guy insists they make a move now since Levi and Yui are the only ones back there protecting the school.

Episode 11
Levi faces off with Iscariot’s Lugh outside the school. When Yui and Selina have safely evacuated the other students, the ninja girls go all out. Both have their tricks but in the end, Lugh is better and Levi is wounded. Levi is going to do a desperate self sacrificing move like what Lieselotte did. She connects to Invidia Archive to attack her from all sides in this destructive move. Lugh feels disappointed that this is all she’s got and thought victory was in her hands. However Levi pulled the biggest bluff on her as she used her Last Crest to escape and seek shelter inside the school. Arata and co are going to have a hard time coming back since the warp system is destroyed by Hijiri. It will take some time to repair and the nearest one is a day away. There is another way, though. I’m not sure what Lilith is going to do but she needs everyone to lend their power. Lugh searches for Levi and gets trapped by her wires. The headmaster healed her during that time and she’s back in action. However Lugh is able to cut through them by summoning her mythical armaments and eventually Levi takes the biggest cut. Yui is horrified and on the verge of losing her concentration in keeping the rest safe in her dream world. She is desperate to go save Levi so Selina suggests she goes in her stead.

Once Selina pops back into the real world, she temporarily binds Lugh with her camera flash to heal Levi. But Lugh breaks free and blasts them. Did she get them? Well, as cliché as it would get, our heroines are saved because Lieselotte is back. Seems she switched places with Selina (there’s a whole lot of explanation for this but I’m not interested. Rather, I just don’t get it). Then there is something about their magic not compatible so Lugh had to destroy one of her armaments to increase her mobility. Lugh attacks and when she thought she is going to get Lieselotte, it is yet another feint because Levi this time cuts her remaining armaments. Lieselotte’s goal was to heal Levi and not seal Lugh or something. Knowing her chances of winning is slim, Lugh summons Hijiri’s help. Hijiri is disappointed that Lieselotte has decided to side with the good mages. She did lose to Arata after all. Hijiri views this world as no hope but Lieselotte after facing off with Arata realizes that there are people who want her back. She prefers it this way. Besides, betraying is part of being an evil mage, right? Before Hijiri could kill them, Arata and co comes crashing down via wormhole. I guess Lugh cannot be left out of the fanservice since Arata lands on her and got his hand on her boob. I’m sure he enjoys it. Is this the way she is going to get defeated? With everyone happy Arata the man is back, Lieselotte thanks Hijiri for the advices and wants to stay with her Trinity Seven friends. Time for their fight back.

Episode 12
While Arata is pondering about Lieselotte (because Selina’s boobs aren’t that big), it turns into a conversation that Arata is some lucky pervert of that sort since Lugh is concerned the demon lord candidate was trying to make her his mistress. Trivialities out of the way, it’s time to get serious and power up for their final fight. The hooded girl with a powerful aura from Iscariot finally reveals herself. She is Liber’s headmaster and technically she is supposed to fight with the headmaster but they don’t want to destroy the world and just be content with watching the rest fight. So we see our Trinity Seven girls cooperate to take them out. Lugh defends Hijiri from the attacks but there is only so much one girl can take. Defeated. I’m not sure about Hijiri’s God-like power but Arin says only she can destroy its protection. With Lieselotte and Levi buying time for her to do so, eventually it gives enough time for Lilith and her Arata-powered gun to fire back. The ultimate blow that not even Hijiri could defend herself. On the bright side, she is fine (and more importantly, or not, her clothes are intact). Hijiri admits her loss as she underestimated him. As it goes in the unwritten law, losers must reveal everything, right? When Hijiri was sucked into that ruined world, it had nothing but emptiness. She saw Arata living his peaceful life in his fake world and was satisfied with that. But she also saw the future of the world. Arata’s demon lord had awakened and with his Trinity Seven harem, they destroyed the world to recreate a new one. Then in this new world, they reunite once more to destroy it again. The cycle repeats. Therefore Hijiri cannot forgive a world whereby it uses him as nothing but a tool for reincarnation. Iscariot was established to destroy and recreate the world in that stead. That is why she wants to collapse this world and create one whereby he can live happy. Arata is grateful that she is having him in mind but reminds her his Thema is control and thus even when he becomes the demon lord, he will control it. Easy talk now? Unfortunately Hijiri can’t stay in this world for long. Her body disappears and turns into some crystal. Liber’s headmaster takes it as she won’t lose their only chance to defeat Arata. He hopes she will take care of her till he comes to her rescue. Liber’s headmaster is amused that he is coming to save the girl that will kill him. She will make her the ultimate anti-demon lord weapon. I don’t know how or even if this scene is necessary because Arata is the only one who has his clothes ripped in the end. For goodness sake, at least rip the girls’ clothes in that case too! So disappointing…

In the aftermath, Lilith invites Arata to town as gratitude. Instead, Arata wants to thank her for taking care of him since. He treats her to a cafe coincidentally where Mira and Akio are working as maids. Thanks for the food. Thanks for the maids. And the rest of our jealous Trinity Seven could only tail and spy the ‘couple’ for the rest of the day. They wish they were her, right? At the end of the day, Arata feels grateful that Lilith is being kind to him because she thinks he is down after his encounter with Hijiri. She claims despite he is the most powerful and dangerous demon lord candidate, he treats everyone as friends instead like mages. Therefore she can say on behalf for every Trinity Seven member that they like him (although some may not agree to his perverted ways). Arata wants her to close her eyes and give something. She panics but prepares herself for a kiss. It’s an anti-magic amulet for protection. Phew. Relief or disappointed? He doesn’t know if this fitting but he wouldn’t like to see her get hurt by the enemy’s magic. He wants her to keep being his teacher. She’s happy and will treasure it. At this point, the rest of the jealous stalkers can’t take it and pop out of their hiding. I guess spying all day made them hungry so Arata agrees to treat them all. Yahoo! Arata’s closing statement is that he is happy now. That is why he vows not to make any of the girls sad (doesn’t his perversion make some so?). He hopes Hijiri can wait for the day he’ll come rescue her and she can laugh alongside them. So sit tight and watch out because he is going to make it happen.

Episode 13 (OVA)
Arata is in danger of getting expelled due to his low grades!!! How can this be?! So he is made to have a special lesson with each of the Trinity Seven as they represent the seven deadly sins archive (because he didn’t understand what it is in the first place and his power is vital in dominating the archives of other mages) and must hand it in by tomorrow morning. Oh, look at the time. Better get going now. Who to start first? Levi might be but since she wants to prepare some sort of sweet dessert, she tells him to make her the last one. So the first one will be Lieselotte and she’ll teach him sloth via Selina’s body. Just like back and chill as she undresses and seduces him! Oh yeah. Me like this lesson! Then dumb Lilith had to barge in and warn them about doing lewd things. Next is Yui. She brings him into her room and strips herself naked. Take out all your horny greed on her! Isn’t that supposed to be lust? And Arata won’t do it does it mean he prefers the loli version? Anyway he tells her to remember about her other friends and not just him. This reminds her that she just had another greed: To live happily with them. When Arata is taking a bath, Akio joins him. Despite she is representing gluttony, she doesn’t act the part because she practises strict abstinence. By the way, the bath next door is more interesting because the girls are molesting Lilith’s voluptuous body all over. Care to join them? Next up is Arin in her room and with her emotionless face, it’s hard to believe she is wrath. She tries to make him mad but I don’t think it is working. But when she suggests making babies, suddenly Lilith barges in and gets mad. Oh, isn’t she the perfect one to be wrath? They got lectured by her but they’re more preoccupied talking to each other than listening.

Arata may have not heard of knocking because he opens Mira’s door and sees her changing! Beat down! She agrees to help him with his assignment. However she starts getting technical about her pride area. No fanservice! Boring! Not interested! Then she gives him heaps of books to read. See? So boring that she herself fell asleep! Only one thing for Arata to do. He puts her to bed and Mira who is half awake fears that he will rape her but all he did is pat her on her head and thanks her for always keeping him in line. Lilith who is spying from outside starts to feel pain in her chest. Mira on the other hand feels regret that she expected him to rape her and now she is disappointed???!!! WTF?! Arata thinks of calling it a day when Lilith visits his room and hugs him. Lust lesson? Yeah, they should sleep with each other just for tonight. But Arata decides to be a gentleman and not devour her because he knows she is doing this for something else. She tells him about that Mira scene so he offers to be with her if she feels lonely. Enough to make her cry! Suddenly the entire dorm is lit up and Levi makes her entrance. This is her way of teaching him envy. Well, she made Lilith felt that. Seems she is the one who planted the sleeping drug in Mira’s and then secretly open the door to let Lilith peek. She is disappointed that nothing erotic happened. But now they have to face the wrath of Lilith and Mira. Well Arata, did you learn a good lesson from all the seven deadly sins? At least the headmaster knows he has passed at this rate. The final scenes show Lugh being brought before the headmaster as he notes all the pieces have gathered. And a few other scenes of other potential characters…

Trinity Harem
All is well, ends well. For now. Till the next time. So okay. There goes another anime with mediocre storyline, filled with extra fanservice to make up for it. It does little to explain about stuffs like the black sun and what the heck is happening to this world because it is just mysterious that it kills normal people but not mages. Even so, weak ones still fall to its affects. But I’m guessing it is somehow Arata’s fault, because it is ALWAYS his fault, right? It feels like mere convenient setting for this anime and as you get into the flow of it, you’ll forget it since it doesn’t bear any significant or important impact on the overall story. At least for where this season is concerned.

The biggest downfall of the series is the direction of the plot and the magic terms and system. Story wise, we get the general idea of it but if you follow closely episode by episode, it makes you wonder where we are going. You start thinking if this is just going to be some harem fanservice show (which it is) because it feels like Arata and the girls fooling around for most of it. It is a bit confusing too because it doesn’t feel like Arata is getting stronger and when he does, it was like instant, crushing our belief that you take donkey years to get to that super master level and he just pulled that off in a blink of an eye. And he doesn’t even know how it is done for half the time. Genius or sheer luck? He is supposed to save Hijiri but it turns out she turned into a bad girl. So does he still want to save her or fight her? Generally, you don’t see the plot moving anywhere.

Even as bad as the plot is the confusing magic system. Thema and deadly sins… Yeah sure, whatever. The names of whatever spells they chant may not be tongue twisting and confusing but the system itself is already complicated enough for casual viewers like me. I don’t deal well with scientific or other special terms especially animes that rely heavy on such so it wasn’t enjoyable mainly when I’m trying to piece together about how their Thema and deadly sins are connected to whatever archive. I mean, besides the big 7 deadly sins Thema, there are many other smaller subdivisions branching out. Is there a Thema for easy understanding for all this crap? Is there a book in the library called Thema For Dummies? I think it is explained but they’re just touching the surface and like I’ve said, it will be a big frustration for casual viewers and those who are not familiar with the series.

Although the action parts are not bad and quite okay with some big explosions and magic effects thingy to keep you glued, imbuing it with the terms that don’t make sense or cannot remember takes away the fun in watching the action scenes. In the end, you just couldn’t care what it is and like me, you’re going to go, “Whatever…” and accept this whole Thema activating thingy and go with the flow. It’s easier that way on my brains. After all, you’re not supposed to use a lot of brain power when you watch this kind of series which is mainly of the harem and ecchi genre.

In view of that, although I feel the character development is weak, nevertheless the characters are the strongest point of the series since they are likeable and amusing no matter how annoyingly cute or annoyingly annoying they are. They might be typical stereotype tropes but at least they are likeable. At least for this kind of genre. It feels like Lilith and Mira are getting a lot of screen time because the duo are the ones who would react the opposite when dealing with perverted and fanservice situations. Because it is more fun to see girls like that get totally embarrassed compared to the rest who are more sporting and seemingly consenting to such impure thoughts or actions. Is it no wonder why Arata and the rest of the Trinity Seven love teasing them?

So like Arata as the main character, he is no wuss and as seen, he can pull off pretty amazing and powerful moves if he puts his mind to it. Even better, if his harem is in danger. I mean, when you have something strong hidden inside you, you can’t be just a disappointing weakling, can’t you? Unfortunately (or not, depending how you view it), he is quite open and does not have any qualms in refuting his perverted behaviour so this riles some up and to a certain extent excites some up (unless done to another girl instead, then the excited becomes the riled). This guy is also casual and easygoing since he isn’t a genius in the magic department but gets by when necessary. I don’t think he even cares about all that formality about being a mage and just wants a normal life, to laugh with his friends who are coincidentally all females for now. And no, I don’t think the headmaster can be called his friend or anybody’s, mind you.

The rest of the Trinity Seven girls have their unique personality and it makes them interesting since they are not weak or being a damsel in distress that needs rescuing. Individually they are strong although at times cooperation and combination of their powers are key to their victory. As mentioned earlier, Lilith and Mira gets more screen time so obviously we see lots of their personality thanks to them being objects of perverted teasing. But you might get annoyed initially with Mira because apart from being tsundere (or turning into one), she’s the kind that take action first and asks questions later and the method she always employs is to destroy something for good. Being a strict person, she keeps reminding us how impure Arata is like as though she is some pure goddess or something. Thankfully, Arata ‘converted’ her so she is no different from the rest now. The other girls are also amusing themselves although they feel like stereotypic tropes such as Levi’s cheeky and mischievous personality, Yui’s energetic and liveliness, Arin the complete opposite with her emotionless and the carefree Akio. I am sure each of them have their past especially Akio’s one being the most curious but it is sad that with such limited episodes, they are not properly fleshed out and so we are just content to believe that they are just members of Arata’s harem. I mean with so many of them, screen time is limited and even during battle scenes they had to take turns.

I can’t make head or tail about Hijiri whether she is the good girl playing the villain part or vice versa. She doesn’t harbour any strong killing intent to kill him although she gets real serious to kick ass in her Satan mode. When I said killing intent, I mean that kind of aura you emit with so much hatred and detestation that you would want to kill that person because you cannot stand his existence. I don’t feel that in Hijiri and it’s like she’s smiling at the end each time they fight. So is she like serious or not? Maybe like I said, she’s just playing the villain or she is just hoping to be proven wrong that one day Arata will come to rescue-cum-defeat her. Last and not least, the headmaster of both schools. They may not look the part especially with Biblia’s headmaster acting more like a joker but at times he proves why he is one of the strongest mages around because having a peek of his little magic already warns us not to mess with this dude. Just like Arata, better for him to stay the dumb pervert. Because sh*t hits the fan when their true powers come forth especially with Arata not only destroying the world as demon lord but getting the girls in the end as well. And you thought only good guys get the girl in the end, eh?

Highlighting the harem factor, it is safe to say that eventually all the girls we see will like Arata one way or another. Because as far as I can see, he already has got others even outside Trinity Seven. Some are more obvious in showing their affections in public like Yui who can’t stop clinging or consenting to whatever impure actions and Arin the self-proclaimed emotionless wife of the demon lord candidate. Every harem group needs a tsundere and those seemingly outright and against it but deep down you can just feel it’s the opposite otherwise. We’re looking at you Mira and Lilith! Then there are Levi and Akio who are cool about their feelings for him as they like him in their own way. Even bad girls like Lieselotte who took a beating from him even turned to the good side, as well as Ilia. I’m not discounting Selina too since despite not a Trinity Seven member, she hangs around them often and that ability to switch back and forth with Lieselotte feels convenient to have her around as a twin. I’m not sure if I can classify Hijiri as being yandere since she sounded like she loves him enough to kill him but I am guessing if the Iscariot girls ever lose to him, they might just follow the pattern and be part of his harem, which I believe will be the case. So if you’re looking for some solid romance, don’t bother.

Initially before I started watching this series and when I first read its synopsis, I don’t know how I get the idea that this show will be one that has Arata going around fighting the Trinity Seven and after defeating them, they join him and thus become part of his harem. I mean, the line of him meeting the school’s strongest seven seemed to have me thought so. How else do you get strong girls like them under your thumb and command as your ally? That’s how you do a harem in this show, right? It’s like today’s enemy becomes tomorrow’s friend, right? And so Arata went around conquering the strongest babes of the school and eventually earn them under his harem in this action packed-cum-fanservice heavy anime! Oh God. How did I even ever hope to even see this as the plot of the series?! Before you know it, that guy already amassed his harem, some as early as when they are shortly introduced.

Fanservice is aplenty with the girls’ clothes getting ripped seems to be the staple fanservice of the series although not constantly spammed throughout. Every main and supporting girl of Arata’s harem has got her clothes ripped at least once, whether by accident or by intention. I thought grimoires like Sora won’t get into this predicament but they surprised me with her fanservice too. Even background female characters are not immune or excluded as there was one scene (that almost yuri tentacle rape scene). Except for Iscariot, so maybe once Hijiri and Lugh become part of the harem, then they’ll get their clothes ripped too? Hey, to be fair, even Arata himself got it once. The only person left is the headmaster… But I don’t think you would want to see that.

The art and drawing feels pretty okay and standard. I don’t know, I think it is just me because I feel that most of the characters’ face have this, how do you put it, uhm, bratty look. Maybe it is their eyes and the way their mouth line curves to give that bratty smirk. From Sora to Mira and even Arata himself, I can’t help think the bratty look they have when I see them for the first few times. Maybe it has something to do with the smiles because like Akio’s, her eternal grin makes her look she has got a silly face. CGI is also used but this is mainly for the school corridors. Sure, they look smooth and pretty but it could be sometimes be a little jarring when combined with the 2D characters. Especially there was that fight scene of Lugh versus Lieselotte in which they pulled a quarter of that Matrix camera effect. Looks cool but also a bit odd at the same time.

Once more, for a guy like me to have watched so many animes, the characters start looking pretty familiar, like I have seen some of them from somewhere before. For instance, I didn’t know Fairy Tail’s Mirajane made a cameo here. Who? Doesn’t Yui look so much like her? Must be the way she ties her front portion of her hair that resembles a brush. That is her ideal version. What about her actual and busty loli version? Well, I thought she switched places with Inou Battle Wa Nichijou-kei No Naka De’s Hatoko. Then there is Hijiri who has this striking resemblance to Akuma No Riddle’s Suzu Shuutou. I’m also seeing shades of Chitose from D-Frag! in Akio as well as Lilith looking pretty close to High School DxD’s Rias. Lieselotte and Selina have that typical look to many other twintail blondes like Ekaterina from Seikon No Qwaser, Himegami from Maken-Ki, Erina from Ore Ni Twintails Ni Narimasu, Chisa from Gift ~Eternal Rainbow~, Anri from Happiness and Ayu from Kimi Ga Nozomu Eien to name a few. I keep wondering if Lugh is a cross between Strike Witches’ Mio Sakamoto, Infinite Stratos’ Laura and Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls’ Gisen. This might be a long shot but at certain angles, Levi reminds me of the child version of Shingeki No Kyojin’s Mikasa minus the grin. Really.

At first I was pretty convinced that Youko Hikasa was the voice behind Lilith. How unfortunately for me to guess wrong because it was instead Yumi Hara (Marielle in Log Horizon, Yuuko in Tasogare Otome x Amnesia). Maybe it is the character that resembles almost closely to some that she has voiced like Houki of Inifinite Stratos, Stephanie from No Game No Life and Hana of Seikon No Qwaser. Or maybe I’m just having hearing problems. Youko Hikasa does have a role here but as Mira. I never would have guessed if I had not double checked. Hearing Yoshitsugu Matsuoka as Arata kind of reminds me of suspiciously other similar anime characters like Aito from Mangaka-san To Assistant-san To, Director from Denki-gai No Honya-san and Sora from No Game No Life. They are all little perverts, aren’t they?

It is quite welcoming to hear old familiar voices like Rie Kugimiya as Sora. At first I doubted it was her because recently with so many new seiyuus coming out, some sound very close to others and it throws off your recognizing factor (at least for me). Thankfully, the more Sora speaks, the more convinced that it was that loli tsundere specialist behind the character (although her loli character here isn’t a tsundere). Also recognizable are Shinichiro Miki as the headmaster, Ayane Sakura as Levi (she loves spamming every sentence with ~su’, doesn’t she ~su?) and Nao Touyama as Lieselotte. The rest of the casts include Aya Uchida as Arin (a departure from her lively girl roles like Kotori of Love Live, Ascoeur of Kiddy Girl -and), Rie Murakawa as Yui (Aoi in Vividred Operation), Ryoka Yuzuki as Akio (Ino in Naruto), Aya Suzaki as Selina (Mako in Kill La Kill), Ayaka Suwa as Hijiri (Tokaku in Akuma No Riddle), Chinatsu Akasaki as Ilia (Yasuna in Kill Me Baby) and Ayaka Fukuhara as Lugh (Myoukou in Aoki Hagane No Arpeggio). Hmm… Am I seeing something here because there are 5 seiyuus starting with the name Aya…

The opening theme is a generic anime rock outfit, Seven Doors by ZAQ. For a short series, they inserted 4 different ending themes. Most probably for personalisation of Arata’s harem girls I suppose. They are all sung in duets and have techno as their base. But I have this feeling that in many of these ending songs, they have the penchant to repeat certain lines like as though they have become a broken recorder. Like for the first ending theme, Beautiful Sentence by Magus Two (sung by the ones behind the voices of Lilith and Arin), it starts off and continues to be spammed the lines, “You can choose the destination, you can start the revolution”. So much so I thought this was going to be pretty much the only lines of the rest of the song. Personally, although not my kind of song, this is the better one compared to the rest although it has a little rap in it which I find a little funny for them to be singing the lines quite fast.

Taking a lighter and much playful feel is the second ending theme, Shavadava In Amazing by Yui Levi (you guessed it, Yui and Levi’s seiyuus singing this). Some of her lines also feel like scatting since they are singing cute and meaningless words like ‘shavadava’ or ‘pappa yappa paya payappa”. Back to the repetitious spamming for the third ending theme, Restart The World by Twinkle magic (Lieselotte and Selina) although it isn’t as bad as the first ending theme. The way they keep repeating the song title as part of the chorus made me thought that the clip was broken and on the verge of repeating itself forever. Really. Restart the song, literally? Finally, the fourth ending theme, Trinity Seventh Heaven by Security Politti (Mira and Akio) has got to be the worst of the lot. Not only is the music bland and flat, but even the words and the singing seem not to match. There is an obvious cacophony and it makes you wonder if they had run out of songs and just mash together tasteless sounds to get this. Therefore it sounded more like noises instead of a song. Hey, no Sora and Ilia duet? Aren’t they part of the harem too or there is some rule that subjects grimoires to not sing?

Overall, watch this anime if you are into fanservice and harem stuffs with magic as its side dish. I don’t know if this anime could do better if it had another season but I am pretty sure that it won’t be as good if they keep it clean and straight by cutting out the fanservice stuffs. This is after all what you get and can expect from animes like this. Not many animes that rely on ecchi and fanservice can be epic and great. Even like High School DxD comes to mind, it still has its downfall. Because as long as there are people in this world against perversion, it will never be perfect or generally accepted. That’s why sometimes we guys dream to become the demon lord to destroy and recreate a new world where acts of perversion are acceptable by every standard. Where else can you find a harem by your side till the end when the very world is destroyed anyway?

Mahou Shoujo Taisen

June 26, 2015

Japanese people just love to look up to something, do they? They have their idols and character mascots all around. Now they even have magical girls! Yup. Just like being unique to every province and prefecture (and even products), there is a magical girl representing each prefecture! Well, at least in Mahou Shoujo Taisen. Wow. How much do you love them? From what I gather, this anime is adapted from a game of the same name but what I found interesting was the design of each magical girl being determined via contest. I have not seen all 47 magical girls but from the ones I do see here, some are quite creative and typically, uhm, magical girl-like. Since it isn’t possible to show every magical girl, I suppose the top finalists of the contest earn the extra right to be adapted into anime. So don’t be sad if your province isn’t featured because as long as you support your own magical girl, everything will be alright. Will it?

Miyagi Prefecture: Naruko Aoba

Episode 1
Naruko Aoba is chasing a Magatsuhi but she is stopped by a policeman because she just crossed a red light! Being a magical is tough. Especially when you have to fight enemies that normal people can’t see. Yup, it makes her look like a nut talking to herself when she is exchanging heated words with her fat familiar bird, Takesuzume. Naruko is tired and needs a break since she has been chasing the Magatsuhi since morning but when evil is on the loose, no time to rest. So get your ass going! As hard as she tries to catch them, she couldn’t. Takesuzume says she needs to put her heart in it. And she’s going to do it and be the best magical girl. How did she ever get into this mess? Finally she nails one by hitting it away like a baseball. Naruko spots another one but this time the policeman stops her again for trying to cross a red light. I suppose Takesuzume is so obsessed in wanting her to catch the Magatsuhi that he couldn’t care less to notice Naruko is in a bind with the policeman. Magical girl and fat bird get into an argument. She calls him a blockhead and the policeman thinks she insulted him. Remember, nobody can see the familiar. Naruko is whisked away to the police station and Takesuzume still can’t comprehend all that is happening and why she isn’t going after the Magatsuhi. Speaking of which, this cute little creature has spot an armour it would love to possess…

Episode 2
I don’t know how Naruko got freed but she is seen talking to her friend, Micchan about the mysterious cosplay girl (make a guess) who may be going around to liven up the festival atmosphere. Micchan believes if her popularity continues to soar, business will capitalize on it and make a killing on merchandizes and products. Takesuzume swoops down to remind Naruko about the Magatsuhi she let escaped yesterday. Micchan is puzzled about the odd faces she is making. Like as though she’s interacting with a ghost? Takesuzume whisks Naruko away to transform. Yeah. You’re going to cosplay again. And here is your great elaborate and lengthy magical girl transformation. Wow. It took a minute for all that. No wonder we have to continue to the next episode.

Episode 3
The Magatsuhi who donned the armour is now a giant hideous blob heading towards the land from the sea. Takesuzume blames her fault that it might have merged with others to become this big. Naruko faces off with it as Takesuzume is just giving lip service. He should just shut up and help her. Naruko lacks the motivation to defeat it as she remembers how she was working in the paddy fields when Takesuzume swooped down to her. She tried to attack it but was zapped and turned into a magical girl. Although she is mad that she is forced into this and all the trouble she has gotten into, she will not allow the land she loves to be wrecked. She unleashes her most powerful beam to zap the Magatsuhi. It explodes and rains down into some little green bean mochi snack. Wow. It’s like everyone expected it because they’ve got their plates ready to receive it. Takesuzume praises Naruko for a good job well done and that she could do it if she puts her heart in it. But now it is back to more training! And Naruko thought she could go home and get some rest…

Shizuoka Prefecture: Matsuri Sengen

Episode 4
Matsuri Sengen is a miko priestess but she has an odd interest in piecing together old artefacts that her father brings back from the museum. For this particular piece, after halfway through, it suddenly transforms into a mecha robot fist. And Matsuri is going to have a little rude wakeup call from this cheeky little fist whom she nicknames Toro. I mean, you’ll definitely wakeup when some hand is molesting your chest, right? Next morning, Toro claims he is a servant of God and is sent to do an errand. Since it will be faster showing it to her, he has her repeat the lines after him. Matsuri transforms into a magical girl and realizes too late that she has been duped into it.

Episode 5
Matsuri buys a charm in a form of a little robot although Toro opines that it would be better if they sell a figurine of her in a swimsuit. Toro continues his cheeky ways by tugging her skirt. There is a giant size robot nearby as they visit it as Matsuri wonders if Toro could have been from this robot’s hand. Toro scoffs it off that his hand is more sophisticated than that cheap replica. Matsuri also argues that recent plastic models are also as sophisticated and good quality. While they argue about this, a Magatsuhi possesses the robot as it wreaks havoc on the town. Toro won’t let Matsuri run away and suggests they fight together this Magatsuki (something that is possessed by a Magatsuhi). At first she is scared and embarrassed to don the magical girl outfit but seeing the town getting destroyed at this rate, she has no choice but to try it out. However she took too long to decide and thus her transformation scene will be in the next episode!

Episode 6
And here is Matsuri’s transformation scene. Although it just lasts for around 30 seconds. Matsuri swings her beams but all of them miss! Yeah. And I can’t believe that even if she fires at such close range, she can still miss and the shot hit the mountains! Toro motivates her to believe in her own strength. Have confidence. Trust yourself. Before he could finish, the robot pummels him and he is destroyed. Matsuri becomes mad and this time her beam hits the robot. She continues firing and putting all her focus into it till the robot explodes and disperses into yummy snacks. Mmm… Tasty. Wait a minute. Why do the people have bowls ready waiting to receive them? Back home, Matsuri fixes Toro and he is as good as new. Well, almost. But his cheeky nature is still intact as he gives her a ‘friendly touch’ on her chest. I think he might be a small breast lover…

Tokyo Prefecture: Rin Kobari

Episode 7
Rin Kobari is seen fighting a villainous magical girl. Wait, too busty and sexy to be a magical girl… Rin gets knocked out in this tough battle. But she wakes up. Could it be just a dream? Rin as well as her fat bird familiar, Mosuke (is he related to Tamako Market’s Dera?) accompany grandma to Tokyo’s shopping district. Rin thought she spot that villainous babe and follows her right down into the dark sewers. All Mosuke can do is just complain and being a big chicken (although he is a fat bird). Rin has more guts than him. Suddenly something scary is about to pop out from the corner…

Episode 8
What the heck is this KKK?! But they look scary. As usual, Mosuke is screaming in fear and thinks it is better to run away. You survive, you win. As they make a run for it, Mosuke mentions they smell like Magatsuhi but only they are being possessed and influenced by it. If that is the case, isn’t this a job for a magical girl? Mosuke doesn’t think Rin can handle such a big group (pessimist) but Rin says that is the reason why magical girls exist: To exorcise Magatsuhi. She cannot bear to see misfortune on people or abandon them, the reason why she became a magical girl. And now for Rin’s transformation sequence… As she purifies the Magatsuhi, she pops out at the Tokyo Tower. There are lots of seal over it. It was once built to manage the release of ley lines power but sealed due to its age. Standing atop it is that villainous babe, Rei Amagiri.

Episode 9
Those KKK guys view the magical girl in light as their enemy and are delighted Rei is here and want her to grant her power of dark corruption. Rei swoops down to deal Rin a surprise attack. Mosuke smells her as the source of the Magatsuhi corruption and thus those people are charmed by her who is also a magical girl. Rei relentlessly attacks but Rin only defends since she is in a dilemma to fight her fellow magical girl and hurt her. Mosuke tells her there is no difference when one is possessed by Magatsuhi. Rei says she is jealous of Rin because she is pretty. Although she likes pretty things, she still hates her. Time to die.

Episode 10
Mosuke saves her from certain death but Rei still strikes a blow that has her crashing to the ground. When her subordinates pin Rin down and want Rei to corrupt her, Rei dispatches them and asks Rin if she can handle it. Rin powers up and fires back at her. Surprisingly, they see Rei as not fully corrupted and it was something else was possessed by Magatsuhi. Rei fires back a powerful blast. She stabs Rin but it doesn’t penetrate. Instead, Rei gets purified and disappears. It was grandma’s charm that protected her. When Rin returns to her grandma, she couldn’t stop crying that she couldn’t do anything. But grandma knew she did her best and her feelings got through. Hey… Is this a sad ending?

Ishikawa Prefecture: Yuri Inuwashi

Episode 11
Yuri Inuwashi is complaining the place is cold and lack decorative. So why complain to Kijikawa about making more money to buy those stuffs and put his great handicraft skills to work? But to him, money is not important. Unfortunately some people don’t think so. Like this ruthless businessman who thinks he should take up their great offer. And since he won’t, he threatens that he will regret it since this city is a dangerous place. While Yuri is in town, she spots that shady guy making some deal. She tries to tail him but a couple of punks stop her.

Episode 12
Yuri easily beats them up but her dog familiar, Shishiku feels she should have taken them down more gracefully. She’s a magical girl, you know. Later she learns from Kijikawa that there is a group trying to buy up all the region’s famous trademarks and approaching everyone so they won’t run into trouble later. More scooping around has Yuri find out this guy is planning to remodel the handicrafts museum and turn into some theme park. She waits outside to take photo evidence of him meeting a diet member outside a building. To her surprise and dismay, Kijikawa is one of them. This is where she is going to get tough. She transforms into her magical form which looks like some sort of futuristic sentai. Shishiku thinks she is misusing the power to turn invisible and trace Kijikawa since the power is only to protect the area from Magatsuhi. But if she doesn’t use it now, when will she use it?

Episode 13
Yuri spies on the meeting. Shady guy is talking about ‘caring’ for the city and wanting to develop it but it’s all in the name of money. Sure, no doubt about that. But it’ll bring money to the area to and make people like him have enough to eat. He is confident of buying Kijikawa’s technique, have him join the association and make him swear never to question how they do things. Kijikawa isn’t interested and leaves. The technique he inherited cannot be bought by money. Shady guy orders his yakuza henchmen. Once last chance. Join the association or else. Suddenly a Kaga lion possessed by Magatsuhi runs rampage into the room. Yuri saves Kijikawa before he passes out. The lion corners the shady guy but is distracted by Yuri’s powerful beam blasts.

Episode 14
Yuri is in a dilemma since the lion will be getting rid of the baddie. But Shishiku says even so, a Magatsuhi is still a Magatsuhi and cannot be allowed to roam free. He transforms into a Kaga lion to fight it. Yuri joins in and is told there is no need for sympathy when fighting it. After taking some damage, Yuri sees the lion like as though it wants her to defeat it. Yuri does it and ends the menace. She then tells of the shady guy that she doesn’t like him. However what he is doing is not entirely wrong but try not to force others. Kijikawa is weaving an umbrella as Yuri wants to buy one. Although it is designed for males, she doesn’t mind.

Mie Prefecture: Suzuka Kamiki

Episode 15
Long ago, Suzuka Kamiki crashed while trying to do some bike stunt. A guy helps her up but mistakes her to be a boy. Now, Suzuka and her old lobster familiar, Ebizou is watching a motorcycle race. She wonders if Kouta remembers her. Well, I’m not sure if he should at this time because he is under immense pressure. He was told if he doesn’t win the next race, he will have to step down. And since he still wants to race, he aggressively overtakes to the front. Suddenly a Magatsuhi appears and plays with his mind. If he wants to go faster, he’ll stick with him. Kouta wants to ride more and so the Magatsuhi possesses him and they’ll ride till he dies. Yeah. He’s going to crash into the wall!

Episode 16
However the bike goes through the wall! Suzuka transforms into a magical girl and Ebizou a badass lobster bike to chase them. However as they ride on the highway, Ebizou is losing speed and energy if he leaves the prefecture. Luckily Kouta has turned back but there seems to be lots of weird and cute Magatsuhi in his wake. Continuing the chase, Suzuka is barraged with lots of foodstuffs as well as attacking ninjas and aliens. Huh? They need to catch up and stop him because Kouta will ride till he dies at this rate. Ebizou thinks of slowing him down with his missile but Suzuka won’t allow that.

Episode 17
Ebizou detects a shrine nearby and if they head there, they can purify the Magatsuhi. Suzuka rides up to Kouta. She hears him murmur how he doesn’t want it to be game over. She notes that he may not remember her but he was the one who told her if she gave up, it’s game over. She used that inspiration to be like him. She watched him race with a smile and it was what made her keep going and not let life get her down. Where did that Kouta who enjoys riding go? If he is riding with a face like that, she doesn’t want to see him at all. Kouta crashes at the shrine. As the Magatsuhi emerges, Suzuka instantly purifies it. Back in reality, Kouta crashes in the race but walks away okay. In the aftermath, he is doing udon delivery as Suzuka watches from afar. Has he given up racing for good? Is it game over? Ebizou says it isn’t like everything ends after that. All he needs is to continue a new game. Suzuka cycles away thinking he has spotted a suspicious person staring at him. But when he rides up to her, he mentions she has learnt how to ride but still look unsteady. Happy that he remembers, this definitely makes her day.

Kumamoto Prefecture: Renka Ariake

Episode 18
Renka Ariake is cleaning the school’s field by herself and her familiar, Ekuu is not amused she is doing all the grunt work. She’s fine with this. What about the festival? She’ll go when she’s done. Ekuu loves the atmosphere at the festival but since Renka is just gloomy, it puts a damper on his mood. He says if she just wants to join her friends over there, then just go. Suddenly they are surrounded by weird masked people. A Magatsuhi teases Renka as a lonely girl and if she would like to date him. Time to transform and exorcise this lecher.

Episode 19
The Magatsuhi mocks humans as noisy during festivals for the sake of being noisy but Ekuu claims it is to protect the ley line powers. True. But how many humans know about that? Because of ley lines, magical girls exist to keep the region peaceful. Yet nobody pays attention to them. Doesn’t she feel lonely? Renka remembers she trained hard and cleaned up everything herself. Her friends were worried and told her not to try too hard because it made the rest look like slackers. But since Renka didn’t find it hard, they gave up and left her alone. Renka is reeling from this memory as the Magatsuhi continues to mock her that just like her friends, nobody understands her hard work and is not interested. She would be happier alone and toss away everyone else.

Episode 20
Renka continues to be in a dilemma over Magatsuhi’s words. This forces Ekuu to fight that green toad while trying to convince Renka not to listen to him because it is just a trick to let her guard down to corrupt her. That happens when a magical girl loses sight of her purpose and becomes possessed by a Magatsuhi before turning to the dark side. It might be a pain to deal with that she is stubborn but don’t be stubborn because of pride and don’t let her heart grow stubborn too. There is nothing wrong about liking festivals and such. They are not the enemy. Also don’t forget passion because if you do, you go from being stubborn to selfish. It is then Renka realizes and gets the strength to stab the Magatsuhi. Even if nobody will acknowledge her, she will still respond to people’s feelings. Stubborn fool… In the aftermath, Renka joins her friends at the festival. They both apologize and make up.

Kyoto Prefecture: Mebuki Konoe

Episode 21
Azuki fails to capture a bunch of Magatsuhi at some shopping district. Not only people’s opinion of her as a monster specialist is going down, but she has a hectic schedule of places she needs to go to catch those spectres as people claimed to have spotted them. Hardly have any time for breaks, eh? Will her body break by then? Maybe they should hire more people. Meanwhile, Mebuki Konoe and her familiar Oage are seeing those Magatsuhi and think they are being lured by some greater power. As they go after it, Azuki spots them.

Episode 22
Azuki is thinking where has she spot Mebuki before when her boss tells her there is an unusual assault at the crime scene. The area is covered with blood and lots origami paper cranes lying around. She thought one of them assaulted her but could it be just an illusion? As she walks around to look for clues, it leads her to a creepy place with an equally creepy girl, Rei making origami. Those paper arts start attacking her but Mebuki comes to her rescue. She says this Magatsuhi is too much for her to handle.

Episode 23
The magic battle begins. Azuki really thinks she has seen this before. In some anime. Haha. You’re such a funny girl. Only, this isn’t. Rei summons her familiar, Libby as they power up and defeat Mebuki and disappear. Oage notes that Rei has gathered lots of power and it is going to be further trouble if they don’t stop her. Because Azuki can see this fox (thanks to her meddling in Magatsuhi affairs she developed some sort of this power), they need to fill her in with details to avoid her doing anything risky. Mebuki introduces herself and Azuki recognizes her from the famous Konoe family who has purged Kyoto of impurities. Rei who was once a magical girl is now a Magatsuki after being possessed and now absorbing all the power she can find. That itself might have caused her to lose her memories. If this continues, it is going to be more than just people ending up getting hurt. Therefore, Mebuki will be the one to protect Kyoto so please stay out of her way.

Episode 24
Rei remembers when she was fighting a Magatsuhi, the public got injured and she felt guilty about it. While she is wallowing in depression, Libby infused her with something and now she is tainted. Mebuki fights Rei again but Oage notices with Libby around, the protective power of the shrine is broken. This is bad because it will set off a chain reaction and explode other ley lines. Meanwhile Azuki is helping to evacuate the people.

Episode 25
Rei can’t understand why magical girls can remain pure when being one is nothing but pain and hardship. No matter how much Mebuki hurts her, as long as she has the ley line powers, she can recover instantly. Azuki plans on releasing some underground power the spread out the leak. Since the ley lines are connected by the underground train stations, Azuki and the people start closing the shutters to seal it off. With Rei not being able to absorb them, Mebuki purifies her and turns Rei into a normal girl. She tells her that magical girls are the people’s hope. There are times hope cannot be fulfilled but that is no cause for despair. As long as there is hope, a magical girl’s power will never run out.

Shimane Prefecture: Amane Sakaki

Episode 26
What an insulting episode. It isn’t the fact that we see short cameos of all the other magical girls in this final episode. Or the fact that a shooting star is seen streaking through the sky and a high school girl, Hina Yakumo trying to make a fervent wish for hamburger steak for dinner and missing the bus. The next bus is at noon. Better catch up… The comet crashes and it isn’t a celestial maiden but a magical girl! Butt naked at first, that is why you need a transformation scene. Her cheeky familiar, Yamada tries not to peek but did. He thought she is going to kill him but with her memories returned, Amane Sakaki makes her way to go slay Gods. That’s it???!!! ISN’T THIS INSULTING???!!! It feels like she’s just a consolation and missed out on the top 7 so they just barely animate her just to ‘show face’. What a let down…

Magical Girl Galore!
Well, I don’t know if it is a good thing or bad but since I have a hard time picking, I’m just going to call it in-between. Just okay. Firstly, the stories are no more than seeing the magical girl of a province, perhaps a little peek into what she does as an ordinary girl, her transformation into a magical girl, her familiar sidekick, and they go around busting Magatsuhi’s ass and save the day for the locals. It is hardly anything exciting unless you are from that same province of that magical girl so you’ll tend to support her more than others. It started out as okay and with certain stories just ending like that. I know, I expected more but what more do I want?

Of course the final episode ‘killed’ the overall sentiments with its lacklustre teasing because the featured magical girl didn’t even do much. Even with this seemingly ‘boring’ formula, thanks to the 4 minute duration of each episode, it seems tolerable. I mean, would it been better if they blow it up to the usual 24 minutes per episode and perhaps feature 2 magical girls per episode? I’m sure the story would fit and they could also feature all the magical girls that way. Maybe this short series is just serving as an introductory to promote the game. But let’s not think too far and as far as this season is concerned, if you like magical girls, you should find this one satisfactory entertaining. And if you’re obsessed about them, you’ll love it. After all, who hates magical girls, right? I know I love maids more but that doesn’t mean I hate magical girls. Just saying…

The character development is very much lacking. I know we can blame the 4 minute duration thingy and despite the mini arcs taking up a handful of episode, it still doesn’t delve deeper into the magical girl character in focus. You won’t know anything much more about them as you have seen. Some have their own issues and dilemmas but they’ll get by with hope and resolve, the all-important ingredients you need as magical girls, no? Some familiars are amusing with their weird characters and personally, I thought some stood out more than their magical girl like that fat coward Mosuke, the cheeky Toro and that old geezer shrimp, Ebizou. Even more disappointing was perhaps I thought since the featured magical girl is representing a prefecture, maybe we could see and learn a little more about it. Sadly, you’d be better off looking it up on Wikipedia.

Probably the most interesting magical girl would be Rei because I am intrigued on how she turned to the dark side and from the things ended for her, I have got a feeling that the source of it is still roaming free. That is why we still need our magical girls to keep us safe 24/7, right? Therefore if this anime is to be adapted into a proper series, I am sure there will be some interesting characters and maybe doing a cross-over or something because you know, you can’t just stay perfectly within your prefecture borders, can’t you? It’s like Batman never leaving Gotham City… I know, magical girls lose their power but I think fans’ devotion should be enough to power them up till the next galaxy and into the heavens. Seriously ;p.

Action is rather okay if you love those typical magical girl stuffs of using their magic to dispel and purify evil. Otherwise, casual viewers like me would just find it pretty normal and just enough to keep you entertained for that duration. I mean, at least with a limited time, it is a good thing that they do not draw the fight for too long like certain animes… Yeah, it takes episodes to finish a damn fight! I am not sure about this but for certain magical girl arcs, once she defeated a Magatsuhi, it will explode and turn into little snack foods that end up in the hands of the citizens. Is this some little advertising to promote the local delicacy? I don’t know. I’m not sure. I didn’t bother to look it up. Funnily, it’s like everyone is waiting to that food to end up in their hand because after the Magatsuhi explodes, you’ll see them waiting with their hands out just to receive that food.

The art is nothing to shout about as it looks pretty standard although there are some scenes looking cartoonish. Especially the familiars that come in all sorts of shapes and sizes that you might think maybe the producers are trying to imitate something out of Disney’s animal sidekicks but failed. Some Magatsuhi look so cute that you’d never think they’d be something threatening to the townspeople. Heck, I think they can be candidates for new Pokemon monsters. The oddest looking ‘things’ are the extra unimportant people in the background, in which to me look like beans. Bean people? I don’t know. Maybe some of you may find them looking like stick people. And of course it goes without saying that the magical girl outfits and appearance are given prominent priority. You might have guessed that I am going to say that some look like cosplay fanatics.

The voice acting is pretty okay and nothing much to shout about. What is interesting that I found out is that each magical girl that is being voiced is voiced by a seiyuu that was born in that prefecture they represent. I didn’t do my homework to check it out but I’ll take the easy way out and believe them ;p. I recognized a handful of recognizable seiyuus lending their voices such as Ryouko Shintani, Kappei Yamaguchi, Satomi Arai, Mikako Komatsu and Shigeru Chiba. The opening theme is which only played at the start of an arc, is All Over by Livetune adding Anna Yano and sounds like a generic lively anime pop piece.

It is no joke when some people do believe in their magical girl, like they are the super heroines that fight crime and save the city. It’s okay to believe in that. I mean, you’re not going to tell kids that Santa doesn’t exist, right? Even if it looks odd, but I believe the goodness and the virtue behind it that it brings. You see lots of people cosplaying as their favourite characters especially those from the American comics and games so why not magical girls too? It is nothing embarrassing when you realize it is more than just dressing up to save the region from unwanted evil from time to time. Magical girls outfit are embarrassing, you say? Well, like I have always said before, it is always the clothes that give them the powers, right? Otherwise, why would Superman wear his red underwear outside his suit? But with magical girls, you can save the day and at the same time look cute in it. Then one day, Japan will have a magical girl as their national spokesperson. That will be the day…

Kino No Tabi

June 21, 2015

They say that travelling and going on journeys, visiting different countries with different customs opens or broadens your heart and mind. If you had a chance to travel to every country in the world and learn their local custom, would you? If you like so called short stories that aren’t related to each other, then I am sure Kino No Tabi would be a fine series to have a look. A young traveller on his trusty bike travels to many countries and encounters all sorts of people and their own unique-cum-peculiar customs. However he only spends no more than 3 days in each country. I suppose it is enough time for him to explore and learn about the place before moving on to the next. You can’t stay too long because you might get attached and never leave, which defeats the goal of travelling and role as a traveller. The perfect lifetime tour for someone who is eternally on vacation?

Episode 1
Kino rides through the desert with his talking bike, Hermes. He seems to have reached some monument but Hermes tells him starting a journey like this was impossible. If they leave now, they can return to their master’s place. However Kino has decided to travel. As he takes a rest, Hermes mentions being decisive is essential to a traveller but to Kino, it is what saves a traveller. And that is luck. It starts raining. Kino is before a chasm that leads to the next country and Hermes believes the map seller swindled them. However as noted, the world keeps changing and thus the map was supposed to be correct a month ago. Hermes thought if that is the case, there is no need to go on a journey but Kino believes a traveller’s destiny is to travel. A path emerges before them that takes them across the chasm. After registering at the inspection centre, this town seems void of people and only machines are around to serve them. Prices are also very cheap so much so Kino thought there must be a mistake in their stay since it is a luxury mansion. That night, Kino practises drawing his gun. Next day when they leave and ride around the place, they find no humans at all. However Kino soon spots some. However they have shut themselves in and are living alone, not with their families. Hermes reminds they have to leave this country by tomorrow as it is their policy not to stay more than 3 days. Kino says the reason is because that is enough time for them to figure out the country and if they stay longer, they wouldn’t be able to visit more countries. However the real reason is that if he stays too long, he fears he would settle in and cannot continue travelling.

As they pass several houses, they notice the people outside getting scared and running back in. When they go up to talk to a man, he too has the same reaction but he calms down when he realizes Kino cannot read his mind. Inside his house, he explains this is the Land of Visible Pain. Everyone is taught to be considerate of each other’s feelings. Long ago scientists created machines to help with their work. They also create some drink that would help them easily read each other’s thoughts and feelings. Everyone drank it so as not to be left out. Now, this guy loved a woman but couldn’t say it. After drinking the drink, it’s like they realize they love each other. But happiness was only temporarily. Her interest was in flowers and his was in music. Their difference led them to argue as they tried thinking of other things to keep the other from reading their thoughts. Soon everyone started fighting because when you can read other peoples thoughts and yours be read, hatred spreads like wildfire. There is nothing good in feeling the pain of others so people started living apart to not hear each other’s voices. It has been many years since and no new children were born. This town will probably die out and the machines continue to go on. Kino notices the beautiful music he was playing. He remembers his love also said the same thing but wonders how much of that was the truth. As Kino leaves, the guy is happy to have talked to him. He hopes he can stay and settle down here but he can’t. He would love to continue travelling. Hermes notes sarcastically they were staring at each other so long that he thought they were going to marry. Kino thinks he was wishing him not to die on his journey and his reply was thank you. But he doesn’t know if he got the message right.

Episode 2
Kino shoots a cute rabbit for food. Seems when he was riding through the snowy blizzard, he came across 3 guys who have run out of food and are starving to death. They have been here since the winter season started. He decided to help them and give them enough strength to dig out their truck. It is the best rabbit dish ever. One of them is grateful enough to give Kino a ring that was meant for his wife as thanks. As Kino makes his tent, he discusses with Hermes about the dilemma of killing the rabbit. Although his rations are made out of live animals too, it is different when he is hunting for his own. A life was taken away to help others. Although he was not obliged to help the rabbit or humans, he chose to help the latter because they are the same kind. If he was ever in the same situation, he wants to be helped by others too. Besides, a rabbit won’t help given the same case. Kino continues to hunt and feed the guys. They even talk about their Homecoming festival whereby men leave the country to do business and return during winter to celebrate with everyone their safe return and success in business. One of them is going to get married then and it is said those married on that day will find true happiness. The festival nearly didn’t happen thanks to this mishap but they are thankful for being alive. When Hermes asks what kind of business they do, they can’t really say.

When the snow has stopped falling, Kino helps the guys pull the truck out. They rejoice when the truck is up and running. The guys want to show Kino something and call him over. As he walks over, they suddenly point their guns at him. They reveal they trade humans and believe a person as young as Kino will have a good buyer. They are grateful for his kindness but note they are still wolves. Kino is told to throw his guns down (in which he coolly obeys) and one of them knows he has a hidden gun because that is the gun he used to kill the rabbits based on the bullets. Now he is forced to throw down all his knives. They’re everywhere. Wow. It’s like he is a knife dealer or something. When he is about to discard the final knife, the rustling of the tree leaves distract them. Kino quickly throws it at one, right in his face. He stabs the other in the back and uses him as a shield from the other’s gun fire. He picks up his gun and points blank at the last guy. Now what? He shoots him! No love lost. Kino retrieves his stuffs and mentions that was close. He was scared all this time. He checks out the back of the truck and a ghost girl flies away???!!! What the???!!! Seems all that is left is the human remains. I guess this is what used to be their ‘goods’. Kino returns the ring to the dead guy since he is unable to help them. As they get going, Hermes asks what he will do if he comes across the same situation. His reply is that these things will always happen because they are only human.

Episode 3
Kino arrives in a town where everyone is preparing for the end of the world. Which is tomorrow. They believe so because of some priest interpreting a line of the Book of Prophecy. Suspicious isn’t, it? And when tomorrow comes, they’re still here. How could this be? The priest thinks there must be a calculation error and it might be tomorrow due to some lunar eclipse last week. Then another priest rebuffs him that his calculations are wrong. The end of the world will not happen for the next 30 years. Kino leaves for another country whereby the guard is so happy to see him because there are no travellers visiting for some time. He even rings the bell to announce his arrival so that the people can make a grand welcome for him. Kino is invited to join in their feast and tradition of wearing cat ears. Of course he declines. After he leaves, the sad people put away those cat ears and think this didn’t work and will try out some other tradition. Kino stops shortly at a lone house at the outskirts. Talking to this man about that country’s tradition, he explains he is a scholar studying their traditions. They have tried various traditions when travellers visit. Their goal is to create a tradition and it is done so when the traveller participates in it. If they do so, it becomes their tradition. Otherwise, they move on and set up a new one. Long ago after they threw out the kind and abandoned all old traditions, they begin to realize they had no traditions to boast compared to other countries and resorted to this. Of course without realizing it, they have already created a tradition and may cease once they realized it. This guy turns out to be the descendant of the banished king and his generations will continue to observe them from afar.

Now Kino is in a country where sadness is past down as tradition. As told the story, there was a poet who preached happiness till the king with ill intent wanted him to compose a sad poem. He had limited days and was at his wit’s end for he did not know sorrow. On the last day, his wife who couldn’t bear to see him in pain killed herself to just him about that. The poet then composes his sad poem. So sad that the king couldn’t bear to hear and eventually died. Even after being thrown out, he continued preaching for years. After he died, the people thought they would be freed but his daughter continued the tradition for years. Ever since, it has become a tradition to pick a girl and recite the sad poem every day. Before Kino leaves, he is being told that another traveller said the poet’s words were recorded in some book called Book of Prophecy and passed to some faraway country. Outside that prophecy land, Kino sees an army making their way there. A soldier claims they are going to war and destroy it. Because a researcher interpreted a line in the Book of Prophecy that is the way to stop the world from ending (the country had that vague shaped of what the book described that must be destroyed). Hermes wonders if the prophecy was wrong or right. Like Kino knows. Yeah. Maybe they should ask the stars instead.

Episode 4
In this flashback episode… KINO WAS A GIRL???!!! In a time before he travelled and was in the country of his birth, he doesn’t remember his name because he was often teased about it. He met a traveller named Kino who is looking for an inn so girl Kino (as I would refer to him) brings him to the inn where her parents run. Next day, girl Kino watches adult Kino trying to make a motorbike. Something about creating a pact and take care of each other as they travel. Because the bike runs faster than him and needs somebody to keep him balance and steady, that way their journey will be easier and more fun. Girl Kino asks his job and she doesn’t believe he is a traveller because he is an adult and he is supposed to do things he doesn’t like. But adult Kino points out all the adults are doing their job with a big smile. Her reply? It’s because they’re adults. Confused? When a boy her age is seen being taken to a hospital, she explains in this country, kids who have reached the age of 12 will undergo an operation to take out the kid in them and become adults. That way, they are able to smile even if they do things they don’t like. Adult Kino thinks it is twisted and doubts if that is the perfect adult. I mean, doing things you hate? How do you enjoy life like that? Thus by girl Kino’s definition, adult Kino is neither an adult nor child. Just a traveller named Kino. He likes travelling since it’s fun to learn about different countries. He names his motorbike Hermes after his best friend. She asks his reasons of being a traveller. Someone told him when people see birds fly, they get the urge to travel.

Next day, girl Kino asks her parents if she doesn’t want to undergo the operation and if there is another way to become an adult. Everyone is appalled in hearing this and they start labelling her a failure and ingrate. The parents accuse adult Kino for putting weird ideas in their daughter’s head. Before the crowd becomes unruly, an inspector calms them down and reminds adult Kino about each country’s customs. They have theirs and thus problems not he can do something about. He agrees and will leave since he fears he might be killed. But the inspector assures his safety because he has filled his forms and all properly and will guarantee his safety till he leaves. Adult Kino says goodbye to girl Kino and although everyone has been nice to him, he cannot carelessly get involved in the customs of the land. Suddenly girl Kino’s father takes out a knife. He is going to kill her! Because children are the property of adults, they have the right to dispose of faulty ones. With a smile. As he charges, adult Kino protects her and gets stabbed. The adults aren’t panicking and trying to solve this in an adult manner. Yeah. They’re laughing and all. Hermes asks girl Kino if she wants to stay or become an adult. She doesn’t want to be killed or turned into something like them. Hermes offers a third option: Come travel with him. At this time her father has pulled out the knife and going to stab her once more. With a smile. Girl Kino hops on Hermes and with his guidance, she rides him like a pro. Wow. She’s naturally talented. I know she has experience in riding a bicycle and this is just like an upgrade. They ride through the streets and barge through the gates, out of the country. Do you feel different leaving that country for the first time? At the red flower field, Hermes thinks her name is Kino. Thus she decides to assume this name and calls Hermes so. In present time, Kino stumbles into a red flower field. When he tumbles over, he remembers the past and starts laughing.

Episode 5
As Kino travels along the railroad, he meets an old guy polishing the tracks. Seems he has been doing it for around 50 years! He joined the railroad company when he was 18 and they thought there was an old track that might be used so they send him to polish it. He has been at it as they never told him to stop! He believes his pay is being sent to his family back home whom he has never since ever since. Wanting to hear his travels, Kino then tells a story of his journey to a country where everything is automated by robots and humans do not need to work. However he found it odd that humans are still working. When he talked to one, he was told that they were working to develop some sort of stress. Eh, what? Because machines are never wrong and they’re doing past calculations by checking accounts, stocks, etc to match it, the logic behind this stress is so that they won’t become lazy and incompetent. So this is what this meaningless job is all about? I’ve got a suggestion. Stop using the machines! As Kino prepares to leave, he asks the old man how long he will keep this up. Till somebody tells him to stop. Another meaningless job? But when the old guy asks him where he is headed to, he can’t answer. Sounds familiar, eh? A meaningless journey? Travelling along, the tracks suddenly disappear! Kino meets another old guy who is removing them! Guess what? He has been employed by the railroad company since 16 and has been told to dismantle it since they might not be using it anymore. Of course he hasn’t stopped for 50 years since nobody told him to and believes his pay is help feeding his brothers. Kino tells that story of his. As he leaves, he asks if he finds it strange that the tracks are nicely polished. He doesn’t know why but it is a lot easier to remove. Oddly, he asks Kino the question of where he is going. Continuing his travel, the tracks are suddenly back! Another old guy is seen laying them. Yeah. Hired by the railroad company since 15, he has been working since then to support his ill mother. Can you guess why he didn’t stop? But this time Kino doesn’t tell that story and passes. However the old man still asks about where he is going.

Kino arrives in a decimated town. There is no living soul until he finally meets the only guy left. He explains this country was ruled by a cruel king who executed those who went against him. The people cannot take this anymore and formed a democratic process to oust the king. Their first decision was to vote what to do with the king. He was executed. As they use majority voting as their deciding factor, it becomes hassle and too long a process. Some suggested appointing a leader but the majority disagreed that the same fate like the monarchy will happen again. It soon becomes a habit. With any disagreements arising, the minority is always executed. This kept going until exactly a year ago where the last execution took place. This guy and his wife were against the last unmarried guy from leaving this country. 2 against 1. Executed. Half a year later, his wife died of a cold. Now all alone, he wants Kino to stay in this country and be a resident. Declined. He points his gun to force him but Kino wants to call for a vote about the legality of his action. You know what this means, right? Because Kino and Hermes are the majority… Quickly he agrees to let them leave this country. Ah, a unanimous vote. Kino and Hermes are at the crossroads and each decides a different one. Kino decides to go with Hermes because you’ll never know if you don’t try. Besides, they can still backtrack and take the other if they make a mistake. However Kino changes his mind and goes his way. Hermes thought he was tricked but Kino points out like he has said, they might as well try it out and it doesn’t matter which way they go.

Episode 6
When Kino enters the country, the guards instantly make him a participant of the Coliseum. Seems he will fight for his right to become first class citizen or become citizens of the sewers who will serve the first class for the rest of his life. But he is just a traveller. Unfortunately if he does not want to participate, he will go straight to become a slave. After Kino confirms the rules and the weapons he could bring, he agrees to participate. Because the guards continue to mock him, he whips out his gun and shoots one of them! That should shut them up. The plan is to beat up his opponent and then surrender to earn deportation. However Kino wins his match easily but changes his mind to participate in the next round. There are 16 finalists left and only 1 can become first class citizen as well as add a new rule to the country’s policy. Kino wants to take a look at the sewer citizens so a guard brings him down there as he sees the poverty life they live. The guard also has his family living here. Kino learns that the former king was a great man but after his son took over the throne 7 years ago, things turned out for the worst. A participant, Shizu reveals that the current king murdered his father and purged all those who went against him including his aides, family and children. Next day, Kino’s opponent is a pro assassin. He asks the assassin 2 questions. His reason of becoming a citizen here and to give up. No answer. Well then, let’s fight. Both are equally skilled and Kino is able to avoid his boomerang trick that killed many opponents off guard. Finally Kino traps him with his own boomerang and points a gun in his chin. One more chance to surrender. He explains about his life being brought up to be a first class assassin but heard about this country about giving a chance to become first class citizen. That was his plan and now he has failed, he is going to kill himself. Kino stops him and gives him a last chance to surrender. He does. The next round, Kino fights a mercenary. As usual, he asks for his surrender. Not only the mercenary has prosthetic limbs but he has a flame thrower that burns everything. Kino puts an end to his inferno spree when he shoots his hose. Now will he surrender? Never. Kill him instead. With the crowd egging Kino to do it, the mercenary explains he killed many to survive. He came here in search of someone stronger and now that he has lost, he believes the loser must die. Since he still won’t surrender, Kino knocks him out with his gun. In the end, 4 finalists make the cut. Apart from Kino, they are Shizu, Miss Rose and a detective gunslinger.

Episode 7
As generosity, the king (looking like a typical villain from fantasy genres) shows the finalist a play. Feels like a little history of how the throne was ascended. The former king was strict with the prince because of fear that he would kill him just like how he did to his father. However it backfired since the prince couldn’t take the stress and killed him in his sleep. It was the first time he laughed. The prince became the king and when the wife learnt he might do the same to his children in fear of that, she tries to betray him but got killed. I guess this tragic puppet show was funny enough for the king to laugh his ass off. Anyway the gunslinger finds it boring and leaves. Shizu too couldn’t take it and leaves but the king wonders if he has seen him before. As for Rose and Kino, the king offers to either one become his wife and will automatically make his new wife a first class citizen. They both refuse. Rose isn’t here for that and Kino is just a traveller. The king breaks down and laments about the path of destruction he brings. Ever since he killed his father, he can’t stop grinning or get his face out from his mind no matter what he does. He wants them to save him. I guess they’re not interested either. Kino fights Rose. They want each other to surrender. Not a chance. As they fight, Rose reveals her intention is to add a law. Her mother brought her up singlehandedly after her father left. Before she died, she wanted to have white flowers. Rose searched very long for it but when she returned, she died. This country has lots of those flowers. If she wins, she wants to make a memorial day whereby everybody pays her respects to her with those white flowers. Too bad that won’t happen since Kino corners her. The king calls for Kino to kill her but she surrenders. Kino accepts. Just when it all seems to be over, the king shoots Rose!

Shizu hopes for a favour from Kino if they meet in the finals. Please surrender. Why is everybody trying this approach? I guess they don’t want to see blood spill. But since Kino refuses, that about settles it. And as expected, Shizu easily defeats the gunslinger. Before the finals, the gunslinger advises Kino to surrender because the longer it gets, the higher the chance of getting killed by Shizu. Like that would happen. The gunslinger says he is bored of life and is seeking some thrill. That’s why he could understand what the king is feeling. As the fight starts, Kino is impressed that Shizu could deflect all his bullets. It is Shizu’s turn to strike but luckily Kino has metal wristbands to block. Eventually Kino hits away his sword with the butt of his gun. However Shizu won’t surrender now. He says even if he fires, he can still avoid it and beat him. But Kino is fine either way. I didn’t know Kino had some sort of fireball bullet in his gun as he shoots and kills the king! As Kino leaves the country, Hermes asks about that rule he made. Seems he wants all first class citizens to fight each other to determine the next king. The last one standing wins. Fleeing will result in automatic lost of citizenship and harming sewer citizens will also result in disqualification. So that country is pretty much in chaos. Along the way he meets Shizu who is also on a journey. Shizu is the king’s son and was planning the kill him when he receives the winner’s medal. Kino thinks revenge won’t do him any good. He agrees but now he has nothing left to do. He can’t be king as he feels he isn’t suited for it. He wonders if Kino would follow him to the next country but is turned down because he shouldn’t follow strange people easily.

Episode 8
When Kino enters this new country, a great fanfare greets him because he is the first traveller here in 5 years! Nimya is eager to get her dream going and today is the day. She narrates that this is the land of ‘mages’. It is their own term for founding fathers as they helped turn this marsh and swamp land into crops. Therefore anybody who can help increase its yield is very much welcomed. When Nimya was young, she and the other kids used to notice a weird old man living alone with his bizarre inventions. It is believed he went overseas to study but when he returned, he never spoke to others and it could be that he learnt something ‘useless’. Any technology that does not bring yield to their crop is ‘useless’. The old man met a sad end and he died without anybody knowing. As Nimya’s parents died due to an epidemic, she is taken in by her unscrupulous aunt who stole her fortune and then put her in a warehouse, which is that old man’s home. She discovered books containing sketches of many interesting inventions and became interested in it although she knows it is pretty much ‘useless’ in this country. She could understand how the old man felt. Ever since, she became a peculiar kid trying out many inventions in which many ended in failure. When her aunt was finally arrested and Nimya got her fortune back, she remembers her childhood dream: To fly. Of course she tried but all ended in failures. She was about to give up when she hit an inspiration. Now Nimya goes to see the chief (who is bragging to Kino about his crop increase by 3%!) but he denies her and has had enough of hearing it. Later Kino learns she wants a huge bronze statue in the middle of the road removed. Why? She takes him to her home to show a flying contraption. From her theory and explanation of how it works, the only thing left is a long runway and thus that statue is right smack in it. Kino is impressed she came up with the idea. Nimya wonders if Kino had seen such contraptions in other countries. Although he has seen many futuristic inventions, none were about flying. She might be the first.

The chief comes knocking on her door to inform her that he has received complaints from neighbours about her contraption. They will demolish it tomorrow. And she cannot object to it! She feels depressed but when she asks Hermes if it could really fly, she gets her confidence back when Hermes believes from her theory and calculations it could. But what about the runway? It is suggested to make a mound and fly over it. However her calculations show it is still not enough and will crash. Kino then suggests using gunpowder. At first she thought the explosion will destroy the plane but after thinking of turning that power into some propulsion, this might actually work. Early next morning, Kino helps pave the way for her first flight. Everyone remains sceptical but Nimya gets it going. The propulsion successfully lifts her into the air. Everyone is so freaking flabbergasted. Never thought it could happen, eh? When she needs room to land, everyone without hesitation moves the statue away! When she gets down, everybody bows down to her like she is God! Nimya wants to thank Kino but that kid can’t stay because it’s getting complicated (Nimya’s God status I figure). Nevertheless she will always be grateful to him and believes their meeting was destined. Otherwise she will always live a life filled with disappointment. Kino on his way tells Hermes that he didn’t think Nimya could actually fly. Hermes is surprised. Didn’t he suggest and help her? Sure. Based on the theory and calculations it would work but in reality, he really didn’t think she would. And when she did, it looked like magic. Moral: Never underestimate the potential of humans.

Episode 9
When Kino saves a traveller in a desert, he is given a book as reward. He tells him the next country he is heading to is the country of books where they have books from all over the world. Ironically, he just escaped from there because he can’t stand that place anymore. Another irony is that despite collecting books from all over the world, it is prohibited to write books. This guy wanted to be a writer. At the library, Kino meets the chief librarian who explains about the system of filtering books into harmful and harmless. They are done so by critics in a castle. Oh, they’re never wrong too. A librarian lady asks Kino about the book he has. She realizes it is from her former lover. She brings him to an underground place. These people are a group of resistance movement against the critics. All of them have written books and since they are distributed underground without passing through the critics’ screening, it is of course illegal by law. Because Kino has met that man, they wonder if he was told the entrance to the castle since his job was to pass books he collected to the castle. Of course he read many fascinating books which were ‘illegal’. They hope Kino can help but he declines since he will only be here for 3 days. Of course he won’t rat them out. Kino also learns they are looking for the Author whom was originally from the castle. He wrote a book about the world after reading all the books. When finished, he disappeared. It is believed that book is still in that castle. They add that all the books they’re publishing are written by him and there is something magical about them. Like it gives you the illusion of becoming a character in a story. On his way back, Kino meets a mysterious man. He is the Author. He asks Kino an interesting question if he realizes he might be just a character in a story. A guy from the resistance bumps into Kino as he is running away from the authorities. He wants Kino to give the key to the lady librarian. The Author will know what to do with it. When Kino turns back, Author is gone but he left behind his manuscript. Then Kino is confronted by an authority who tells him how people easily got influenced by books and committed crimes. Some to a point where they can’t distinguish between reality and fantasy. That is why the critic system was developed. But could it be down to the readers’ interpretation? Sure, but no matter how fun a book is, it isn’t real.

Next day as Kino is going to see the lady librarian, it seems the authorities have arrested her for having the ‘disease’. The kind where she can’t tell between fantasy and reality. She’ll be treated in a hospital. When Author sees Kino with the key, he believes his role has been decided. He rants about this world is just a story in a book he wrote. Maybe he got the disease too, eh? He says that itself is a fantasy humans created. Life is only a fantasy where everyone is the main character. However the world doesn’t recognize you as that. There is only one way to solve this dilemma: Become an author. He shows Kino the secret passage into the castle and if he wants to read his books, it is in the red bookshelf. Inside the castle, he sees several critics going through the books. The librarian lady and some of her resistance members are taken here to be part of the critics. When they hear Author’s voice claiming everything is imaginary and the world is a big prison, the resistance guys fight back. Kino takes this chance to pass to her the key and manuscript. As he goes to the red bookshelf, a woman claiming to be the minister and leader of the critics brings him to her room to explain. It seems they have set a n elaborate trap using that key to catch Author and lure him back here as he believes this world is just a fantasy he wrote so he will come back here as part of his role. She adds that the system was also developed for another reason. Since the critics are not your ordinary people, they are kept here to keep them away from normal citizens. They are crazy people that ruin other people’s pleasure. Yeah well, seems everybody here is book crazy. Uh huh. They got the disease, I guess. Suddenly there is panic because the place is on fire. All the books are being burnt! Then all this turns out to be a story that Kino is reading! The book that traveller passed him had only empty pages. He was okay to let Kino have it as he doesn’t need it anymore. He is going to write his own books.

Episode 10
Kino is lost trying to find the next country and almost bumps into a granny while turning a corner. She says there is no country in this heavily forested area and invites him back to her master’s home where she works as a maid. There, Kino stumbles upon a lab that creates mechanical dolls. Granny admits she is a mechanical doll created by her master whom she doesn’t know. During dinner as Kino meets the family, he finds it odd that despite there is no country around here, they claim thanks to the maid, they are able to go to work. And when asked about their job, they repeat that same sentence. Even odder is that they didn’t touch their food but dump them away in a secret compartment before granny gets back. Same thing next morning for breakfast. After they have gone to work, granny takes Kino to a valley. Looking closer beneath the water, there is an entire country submerged in it! She says it is an ancient country and must have fallen into ruin for some reason. Of course Kino also finds it odd because the buildings look new. When Kino is fixing Hermes, a meter is broken so granny helps to fix it. Man, she’s good. Suddenly she starts to collapse. She believes her time is almost up as the wear and tear is getting to her. Next morning, Kino finds her collapsed at the corridor. She knows the time for her to break down is here and wants to say goodbye to everyone. The family picks her up and put her to bed. She feels happy that she has been useful to them always and then stops functioning.

As the family buries her, they place 2 skulls beside her. It belongs to her husband and son. It proves granny is actually human. The family then reveal to Kino about the history. As I suspected, the family take off their head to show that they are mechanical dolls. The country at the bottom of the lake was always in conflict between 2 ethnics since its establishment. Granny was a scientist in her younger days and worked hard to create mechanical dolls to reduce labour. She believes by doing so, the conflict will reduce. Thus this family was created and as she is about to celebrate and show this success to her husband and son, they fell victim to a terrorist bombing before her eyes. She become broken and almost died when the ruin fell on her but the android family saved her. They took her to the lab and waited for her recovery and when she regained consciousness, she started believing she was a mechanical doll and made to serve others. At that point, the conflict escalated and they wiped out each other using powerful weapons. The family made the dam and submerged the country so as not to remind her of the terrible event. The mansion in the woods was also created so they could live happily as a family as she wished. It has been 54 years and 341 days since then. They want Kino to stay and willing to be anything for him (the son suggesting to be Kino’s lover sounded creepy) as they feel they were made to do something for humans. Otherwise what else use will they have? Kino is not interested and wants them to decide for themselves. And since Kino isn’t going to change his mind, the family jumps off the cliff and sinks into the lake. I can’t believe that after being so high-tech and all, they can get short circuited by the water?

Episode 11
In a bar, Kino talks to a reformed rogue that he is going on a journey with a woman of the fiancé he once killed. Instead of rotting in prison, she is giving him a chance to atone for the rest of his life. He asks Kino for travelling advice. It is the same as if you would live an ordinary life in a country: Not to lose your life. But after outside the country, Kino witnesses that woman shooting and killing him. I guess it’s all for revenge. She wonders why Kino didn’t stop her. He’s not God. She asks for travelling advice and the same answer is given. Along their way, they remember meeting a young travelling couple who travels without weapons. They have been travelling like this and have been lucky all the while. She plans to continue travelling like this to preach this idea even if it takes hundreds of years. She is pushing herself to do this ever since her fiancé was killed. She bears no more hatred for the killer since she heard he was also killed. Later the guy reveals to Kino that he was the one who killed that killer because he feared she would seek revenge. This is a secret she doesn’t know. He loves her so much and is willing to fight the world for her. After Kino turns the corner, he sees lots of dead men killed by that guy. He is so good that she doesn’t even know. Let’s just hope he won’t destroy the world at this rate. A short flashback about girl Kino riding Hermes till he ran out of fuel. Lost in a forest, a wolf is about to eat her but was killed by an old woman whom girl Kino will come to call as Master. Kino learnt many things under her but that is another story.

On a rainy day before Hermes runs out of fuel, Kino takes refuge in a house that a wise man is believed to be staying. The caretaker brings Kino underground where the ailing wise man is. She explains he got the name when he was living like a homeless person in a country. The king wanted to play a prank on him by giving him what he wanted. But he was told to move away because he was blocking his sunlight, the best treasure. The king felt his words were wise and that’s when his nickname came to be. However the wise man denies it. Kino thought he was a traveller but he explains he never had any desire to start with. He does not fancy material greed or fame so people become inspired to call him so. He came from a country where crimes were rife. He was imprisoned for it and since the authorities are trying to solve this problem, he became an experiment subject. As they believe self conscious is the root of all evil, they experiment to erase it. After many testing, the wise man developed immunity to self conscious but it was not the results the authorities wanted. Because he had no desire to work or do anything! As they don’t want many failures like this, he is kicked out of his country. One day a hypnotist heard his story and gave him a chance to regain his original self if he recalls a word that he wrote on a paper and placed in a bottle. The hint is that the words are the only true words in the world. Of course the wise man had no desire to return to his normal self and just followed the bottle’s drift. In the process, many people started revering him as the wise man.

Hermes wonders if the word is true blue sky. But Kino remembers something similar. A grandson told him before his grandpa died, he told him it doesn’t matter if you have found the blue sky. He thought and thought but couldn’t find the answer. Asking Kino’s opinion, he said there is no such thing because the true blue sky depends on many factors. Each is beautiful although they change. Thus He can’t tell which is the real one he has seen. The wise man starts going crazy. He remembers he has been tricked by the hypnotist. ‘There is no such thing’ is the word and there was no way he would have returned to his normal self. A barrage of emotions flow through him. When the caretaker manages to calm him down and Kino prepares to leave, Kino wonders why she didn’t kill the wise man then. She reveals she was from the same country as him. After the experiment failed, they continued with more although they improved as newer subjects are able to do simple jobs. Her job is to watch over him and kill him if he returns to his original self. But as for why she didn’t kill him at that moment, she doesn’t know. Since he has not much long to live, she will soon be out of a job. Maybe she’ll become a traveller and perhaps be called a wise man. Hermes thinks Kino is like the same like the wise man since they had no purpose or plan. But Kino says there is a difference: He is trying to live his life consciously.

Episode 12
Before arriving at the next country, Kino sees a huge hole with lots of mummies in it. This country is so peaceful that Kino is told that he doesn’t need his guns. Though, he can still carry them around. Kino observes war tanks and weapons being used as playthings or work or arts. He also sees a military drill and being told that there is war tomorrow although it is not the kind they went through years ago. To understand the country’s history better, Kino visits the museum as the curator takes him around from the country’s birth out of nothing to its industrialized and peaked periods. As it grows bigger, it wanted contact with other countries but thanks to their different culture and language, they couldn’t get along and war broke out. This happened so often and both sides lost many lives. It is only until 15 years ago that the war ended and peace as they see it today was achieved. To find out how, please come back tomorrow. Yeah, I guess it was such a long history that it took almost a day to cover! And Kino is in luck because there is war tomorrow. Next day, Kino joins the army as they head out to war with their neighbouring country. At first it might look like they are going to do a mock war. However they descend on a small village and start firing! Aren’t they destroying stuffs and killing the people?! In the end, the country with the most kill wins the war.

When Kino returns to the museum, he mentions that it looked nothing more like a massacre. The curator says that is their version of war. She goes on explaining she had a husband and 4 sons whom she lost to the war. After her husband died first, one by one her sons went out to avenge his death but all died. That is when she thought tirelessly on how to stop the meaningless war. That massacre Kino just saw was her idea. Telling them to just stop won’t do as it is human nature to be competitive and destructive. Both countries come to an agreement to fight this ‘war’ and kill enough of those little tribe without wiping them out. And that ends our history tour. Kino asks her about the massacred people (they are the mummies). She replies that their lost is minimal compared to past victims. Besides, if Kino has any idea as replacement, be sure to tell. And yeah, sacrifices must be made for peace. That ring a bell? I didn’t know they took it this literally and seriously. Kino is unsure if she is wrong now or the people in the past were right. She says when he has children of his own, then he will know how she feels. As Kino leaves, he notices stuffs belonging to travellers strewn along the path. It is those tribe people. They want him to come to their village and kill him! Because they know they can never stand up against those countries who massacre them without any reasons, to satisfy their revenge, they kill anybody passing by. Sorry, Kino doesn’t want to die. When they attack, Kino pulls out his gun. After he shoots and kills one of them, they run away in panic. Kino continues his journey.

Episode 13
In the next country they’re going, there are rumours its people hates travellers and do not treat them nicely. Only one way to find out. The people are alerted when Kino arrives. When the guards learn Kino will be here only for 3 days, they breathe a sigh of relief and welcome him. And then everybody welcomes Kino. When he asks for a place to stay, everybody offers. But it seems Kino is more inclined to a little girl named Sakura. In some ways they share similarities. Sakura’s parents run a hotel, she is often bullied by other boys and being called names. Sound familiar? Sakura becomes his guide as she takes him to her grandpa who can help fix his gun. At first grandpa wasn’t interested but when he takes a look at it, he will fix it. Sakura then brings Kino to the museum to learn about the country’s history. Persecuted people who have nowhere to go got lost in the forest and the forest spirit saved them. They started building a country of their own right here. Kino’s good treatment continues as the people gives him stuffs and one even invites him to his son’s wedding! Kino retrieves his gun and finds it even better when he first held it. Grandpa doesn’t charge him but asks if he knows a certain person. He had a brilliant female disciple who wielded a similar gun. She became a traveller and went on to stick her nose in other people’s affair and caused trouble. She was called Master by some. Kino declines ever knowing this person. Grandpa then shows him his own gun he used when he was once a traveller. He wants Kino to take it on his travels. Kino humbly accepts it. Later Hermes wonders why Kino lied to grandpa about knowing Master. It was what he was told to answer when people asked so. Sakura takes Kino to her favourite waterfall place. She reveals her dream to follow her parents’ footsteps by taking over their hotel establishment and becoming a tour guide. But mother allows her to go on a journey and become a traveller if she wants to. That way, she can learn a lot of things. However Sakura says she isn’t going anywhere because becoming a tour guide here is her dream. Hermes wonders about the nasty rumours about this country. Although it bothered Kino at first, now couldn’t care less about it.

Next day, Kino attends the wedding and even grabs some tree seeds that the bride is throwing and Sakura wants to get. It is believed that those who get them will become the next happy bride. When he returns to the hotel, Sakura’s parents remind him it is about time he leaves. But Kino surprises everyone that he wants to stay for a day or two! He is declined since the parents took the liberty to pack his bags and must leave as he said he would be staying for only 3 days. Before he goes, everyone gives him farewell gifts and even tell him of nice places to camp. Then off he goes. Kino camps on the mountain top where he could see an overview of the country. That night he suddenly wakes up in cold sweat. He has a bad feeling. Suddenly the volcano erupts and engulfs the town in magma! OMG! Everybody died! Is this Pompeii?! I believe I have never seen Kino’s face this shocked before. Kino reads a letter from Sakura’s mom detailing the events. A month ago, a researcher told the country it would be hit by the lava. They were given a choice to abandon the country. It may sound silly to travellers but since they were born here, there was no other way they could live. They chose to live their remaining days without cursing their fate. It was when they realized their country had been very disrespectful to travellers in the past. If nothing was done, they would be remembered as cold hearted people. Ironically no travellers came since they changed their attitude and Kino was the first since. They thank Kino and Hermes for giving them a chance. Kino calls this their ego. He also reads Sakura’s letter not to forget about them. Of course attached to it are the seeds as there is no use for her to keep it. There is nothing more they can do but for them to continue travelling.

Episode 0
This is a short movie and serves as a prequel for Kino before his journeys. Kino was still a girl but living under Master’s care. Master guides her well and she looks like a happy girl learning under her. They even have it all planned out what they’re going to do for the fine weather. Master also teaches Kino how to use a gun. Although calling Kino a genius, there is much more she still needs to learn in the long run. Master meets a gunpowder seller who asks about her living here forever. Master intends to stay that way and not leave the forest. As for Kino, it is up to her. Later he asks Kino about it and it seems she doesn’t mind staying here forever too. That afternoon, Master and Kino go to cut down a tree. They use a heavy chain gun to fire and cut it! Wow!!! Kino is still uncertain about using that name and practises. She thinks the masculine term is more suitable. Next day, Kino notices a group of people leaving Master’s cabin. She has noticed that people from the neighbouring country have come to seek a favour but all were turned down. Kino is still learning how to ride Hermes and as she goes to fetch water, she is surprised to see the original Kino at the river. Turns out to be somebody else. He was wearing a coat very similar to the original Kino. He relates how a guy gave it to him so Kino is interested to know where and which country he got it from. Then Kino talks to Master about wanting to go to that country but she cautions her that she doesn’t even know which country it is nor if that coat that person gave to was also given by somebody or bought from somewhere. However since this is Kino’s life, Master allows her to do what she wishes despite the uncertainty of things. This means more intense training using her gun and riding Hermes. Before Kino leaves on her journey, Master gives her a proper set of clothes for her travel. She also gives a coin as a charm. Master has a map of the country Kino wishes to visit and even the location of the home where that supposed person Kino wants to visit.

Riding along, Kino wonders Master’s name as strange till Hermes points out it isn’t a name and more of a title. She never knew, eh? Once Kino reaches the house, an elderly mother greets her. She thinks she is a friend of her son and that he is coming back. But Kino soon explains how the original Kino got killed so that she could leave. When Kino returns his coat, the mother starts becoming frantic. She snatches the coat and couldn’t stop uttering Kino’s name. Kino is left in shock. Once she has calmed down, she continues that her son liked to travel and she never knew whether he was alive or not. Inviting Kino to stay for the night, as Kino takes a sip of the tea, suddenly she feels weak and her vision blurs. The mother is going to kill her. She blames Kino for the death of her son. If it wasn’t for her, he would still be alive. Kino however still has the strength to avoid her knife stabbing. When she is cornered and mother is going for the desperate strike, the coin falls off Kino’s sleeve. That is when Kino has a complete change in character. She says he is Kino now and takes out her gun and shoots her in the heart. Kino collapses soon after. When she wakes up, she finds several people cleaning up the house. They mention this mother’s son died a very long time ago and even forgot his name. She considers all travellers who pass by here as her son and kills them. As she lives in the outskirt of the country, the law is beyond their reach. That is why they have sought Master’s help but Kino turned up instead. When Kino sees her hair tainted with blood, she cuts it short. She returns to Master with a new look. She also returns the gun and coin and wants a couple of favours. Kino wants to be strong so Master agrees to train her harder. Also, she wants to hear more stories about Master on her travels. I think it is going to be long so she’s starting right now! Oh heck, she doesn’t even know which one to begin with.

Special: Tower Country
In this special that lasts only for 14 minutes, Kino enters a country that seems to be centred on building a very tall tower stretching into the sky. Is it because they are scared the sky will collapse or are they trying to reach God? Kino has gone around asking but all the people could answer is that it is their duty and just doing their job. Nobody knows the actual reason why the tower that has been built for 230 years and still in progress. Well, it is like asking why Kino travels, right? But there is another problem for Kino: There are no inns. So he makes do in some small room. As he retires for the night, a boy sneaks in but Kino already anticipated this and overwhelms him. Kino points his gun as the boy quickly explains he is not here to rob him. He is here to ask him of something. He wants Kino to take him away on his travels. As the people of this country has never travelled before and only focused on building the tower, those who don’t help will be labelled traitors and sacrificed. You can’t do anything else (thus no inns whatsoever). It isn’t that he doesn’t want to help build the tower, he can’t see spending his life on that. Kino understands but can’t take him along as he only travels with Hermes. If he wants to, he can travel by himself. The boy feels disappointed and leaves. Next day, Kino continues to observe the country building the tower in full force. On the day of his departure, he notices everyone panicking. They hear the tower ‘moaning’ before collapsing. And then… Everybody rejoices! They are happy to see the tower collapse in their generation. What now? Build a new one! The boy then goes up to Kino and ask his opinion doesn’t he find it all strange? Kino says he is unsure if everyone is crazy or only him. The boy becomes disheartened but Kino suggests if he doesn’t want to build towers, maybe he can build coloured bricks and engrave on them. The people also like this idea as they go draw up plans to make a new tower. Although Kino hasn’t decided the next country to visit, it is time to leave as always.

Movie: Country of Illness
In another short movie, Kino enters a seemingly wasteland but taking a look around, he finds the entire city fully sheltered within the valley. He is welcomed but first needs to clean himself. Hermes’ gear clutch is also fixed and they even give his exhaust a super upgrade! Such service. After being given a map, Kino is being told that many of the citizens live here. Those who live outside are considered elites because they are a team trying to go for land reclamation. As this is an enclosed and purified space isolated from external pathogens, most of them yearn to live outside under the real sun and sky. Kino’s lodging expenses are even on the house although Kino could smell a faint anti-septic smell of this city. Then the hotel owner calls him. No Hermes, it’s not about paying the hotel bill. He has a sick daughter, Inasha and hopes he can tell her about his travel stories. The next day he pays her a visit and starts telling some of the stories. I don’t know how long this will take. In the end, she asks if he knows about her illness. He has heard that certain people get them and there is no cure. But recently there is a breakthrough in the research to slow it down. Seems she wants to go outside. It is mainly to thank a boy, Rouge whom she met a year ago. Inasha brings Kino to the rooftop where the supposed meeting took place. He was energetic and optimistic about going outside. Eventually he became part of the reclamation team. They started exchanging letters. She read in excitement the happenings and new discoveries outside. His ripened tomatoes sounded fresh and delicious. Ironically the medicine she takes makes her feel sick. But reading his letter, it makes her feel better. She has a request of him. Due to the rules that they can only exchange a letter per month, she has made a bird out from paper after learning what it is from his letter. She also made a brooch as his present. She hopes he can give it to him on his way out.

Kino leaves but when he reached the supposed village, it seems abandoned. A guy named Cole from some special defence forces wonders if he is lost because this is an abandoned reclamation village. Cole brings him back to his underground base. This is a post office. After Kino gives Inasha’s present, Cole explains that Rogue has already died 6 months ago. He explains the truth. The country is doing all it can to fight the disease. As time is running short, they are using humans as test subjects to develop vaccine. Those selected as part of the reclamation team are those families which are healthy and have no other relatives besides themselves. Cole is almost breaking down from the guilt. He continues that Rogue is actually beneath Inasha’s feet, in a small lab beneath the city. He thinks his death is not in vain because it helped contribute in fighting the illness. He believes Inasha and other sick people are able to receive the benefit of the vaccine. Now that Inasha has a present, does this mean he has to write a reply letter? But as far as Kino is concerned, he has already delivered the gift and will take his leave. However Cole attacks him. They play cat and mouse before pointing their guns at each other. A shot is heard. Meanwhile Hermes is waiting outside and is trying to hit on a buggy! Doesn’t he know that is just a normal buggy? Awfully quiet, isn’t it… After Inasha takes another awful medicine (reaction from the doctor and nurse doesn’t look good), she takes out her latest letter from Rogue. All lies but it gave her hope. Kino continues his journey as Hermes asks his next destination. A country with people living happily? But Hermes plays it down that he won’t be happy if he doesn’t face reality. In that case, a country with good food.

This Ugly/Strange Yet Beautiful/Curious World
And so the journey for Kino continues. Where he goes and where he ends up depends where the wind (or Hermes rather) takes him. With so many countries existing in the world, it just makes you wonder how many more there are. Some of which may never be discovered. Even though it is a small world but from the looks of it, it is still huge (assuming it is the same planet and perhaps alternate timeline if you want to go that far). I don’t know about the status and role of a traveller but from the way I see it, they are viewed and treated differently from local citizens in the sense that they are guests or observers from a foreign land and are given their due treatment in turn for respecting their laws. Well, at least most of them. And isn’t it odd itself that many citizens of a country do not move. They born, raise, stay, work and die in that country. Hasn’t anybody ever thought of travelling? Maybe that is why genuine travellers like Kino are rare.

Having each episode standing alone as itself is both a good and bad thing. It is good because viewers do not need to remember and care about the plot that might be carried forward and thus you can easily enjoy the episode. What happens in that episode, stays in that episode. You can move on to the next without any worries. The shorter something is, the less confusing the plot or other factors there are. However being episodic is also bad because it lacks a sense of continuity and thus a direction that we could see. Because basically every episode is just following the same formula of Kino arriving, exploring and finding out the truth before setting off. Sometimes the stories are interesting but there is no more to the revelation than that has been explained. It leaves you wondering because you thought there would be more to that but it just ends there with the simple revelation that even a kindergarten kid could write and that’s it.

However the fate of certain characters as well as the ending of each episode is such that it leaves you open to your interpretation. For Kino, it is at it is. What he has seen and experienced for the last 3 days is already enough. He doesn’t get too deep into the politics and culture of them because as an outsider, what right does he has even if some locals plead for him to get involved. So I think what Kino does is the best. Just observe and enjoy his stay, then leave. Therefore what happens in that episode may look like as though it is left hanging and without any valid conclusion. How would you want it to end anyway? There is no end. Life for that country has to go on.

Kino and Hermes are the only recurring characters in every episode and despite them being the stars, it doesn’t feel like they are very imposing on the series overall since Kino is quiet and more of the observing kind. He doesn’t intend to leave very big footprints behind. His emotionless and monotonous character may add to the mystery of his being but I suppose this is the only attitude to employ when you are a traveller. Emotions are a dangerous thing and could be the thing that costs you your life. So it’s fine for Kino for him to stay deadpan and the ever observant not wanting in meddling in the affairs of each country. I am not sure what is the big deal about Kino practising drawing his gun before he goes to bed. I guess he needs to keep his mind sharp. There are scenes that show Kino does not hesitate to use his gun when necessary but only as a last resort. Sometimes he looks like trying to calm down, breathing heavily after pulling the trigger like as though he has committed and inevitable but necessary act. At least it shows that he has his side of emotions too. And when he had a change of heart of wanting to stay in a country for more than 3 days, it could have been a matter of life or death! Had he stayed, he could have died! So now you see when you have a policy, please stick strictly to it. That is what happens when you get too attached. You stay and become part of the culture, forgetting your role as a traveller.

I have always been wondering about Kino’s gender. Although it has been pointed out in an early episode that Kino is a girl, however I myself is uncertain if I should classify Kino as that. Because Kino often speaks in masculine form and even his outlook is quite boyish. Even when asked by some if Kino is a boy or girl (although some characters outright referring Kino as a girl), Kino himself doesn’t clearly answer and says that Kino is just Kino. Neither a boy nor a girl. Yeah. Kino, the third gender. Therefore, I just decided (on my own basis) to classify Kino as a male. Because despite he was once a female, Kino has discarded his past and moved on to being somebody new.

The mind boggling thing is that I don’t see Kino taking notes or having a camera with him. So how the heck does he remember all the countries he has visited? I know we can say he has got a good memory but I thought with notes and photos, at least there is proof and record of all the countries he has visited. Because at this rate if he is going to write a story about his life’s travels, it will take decades to complete and a great amount of forests have to be sacrificed just for him to pen it down. But then again, Kino is not doing this travelling for anybody else but himself. So all the adventures he will take them to his grave. Because, if you want to know a country, it is best you go there and experience it yourself.

Hermes is a funny machine himself. If I should describe him, he is quite a frank motor. In the sense that he doesn’t beat around the bush and says his thoughts that comes to mind. And he says it in that gentle tone that is what makes it funny. He also has a penchant of misquoting sayings and Kino had to play the straight guy in correcting him. The only thing that is not convincing about Hermes is his speech. No, it is not the way he talks. But rather Hermes looks 100% like a motorbike. Despite it may look comical, but I thought having at least a mouth somewhere to show movements when he speaks would be more convincing that the motorbike is alive. I mean, he is still a machine but at least to show there is life. Now with Hermes looking just as a vehicle, it looks like whenever he speaks, his voice may have come from somewhere else. I don’t know. From the sky? The ground? The wheel? The exhaust? So it feels like animating Hermes is the easiest job ever because you don’t need to animate any movements of his body parts when he speaks.

As the characters of each country only appear for that particular episode, it makes no sense to give many of them names so most of them are just simply identified as their looks or generally named as they are. Heck, they have no names so sometimes it is hard to tell. But would you care because you’re just passing and not going to remember them all anyway. Well, I suppose this is good for people who aren’t good in remembering names. Seriously. And even if you could remember those that are name, what good would that do? Because they don’t appear ever again.

The art and drawing although it is old school and perhaps an excuse not to ‘complain’ when you compare it to animes these days, but sometimes I feel that even certain characters have this strange and one kind look in them. Overall, the character designs are simple and nothing very elaborate while the background and sceneries also feel okay with some of them looking like water colour art. Well, this is an old production after all. 2003 is such a long time ago. The colouring also feels dull and I would say they aren’t as bright or vivid and just dull but I am sure the reason is to give a realistic feel of this seemingly dystopian world. But the Country of Illness movie employed CGI effects and it looked really different, being smooth and different from its previous style. At least the colour hues are brighter than before although the story remains grim.

The opening theme is All The Way by Mikuni Shimokawa. Personally I think this is quite a nice and lively song that ironically fits the series and Kino’s journey despite many of his journeys have this gloomy and mysterious feel to it. This is one of the old anime songs that I would love to sing along to. The ending theme by Ai Maeda (who is also the voice of Kino), The Beautiful World is also another lovely piece albeit it is slower and sounds a bit like medieval music. The ending theme for the prequel is Hajimari No Hi by Ai Maeda whereas for the final movie, Mikuni Shimokawa sings Bird. I don’t really notice about the soundtrack but if there was one that strikes me, it is the one whereby words or thoughts pop up on the screen. They play this very creepy and hollow string or voice that just creeps me out each time.

Sometimes to think that each country has a weird culture of its own may look and sound funny that you may think it is just plain silly. However in reality if you stop and think, isn’t every country in the real world also as quirky and weird? Each with their own local customs and culture that would really shock and surprise foreigners with what they see as unusual from their own. It all pretty much depends on our influences. Therefore what we consider normal and the norm may look ridiculous in the eyes of those who are not familiar. It is the same for this anime. That is why it is important for Kino or any other traveller to not deeply get involved unless you know what you’re getting into. In view of this, it brings me to a point about the connectivity of the countries. Each country is so isolated from one another that it is as good as being on a different planet. I guess if you’re assuming a dystopian world where internet doesn’t exist. If it does, wouldn’t it make sense to connect to each other? Or they would rather be happy in their own little world…

Overall, this series is interesting and amusing with each episode as short and independent stories. It may not evoke the greatest emotions of any kind but some episodes keep you thinking and pondering but in the end, it is all up to you on what you want to think it is. Because you yourself as an individual are just like any traveller, decide your own journey. After all, everyone’s life is a big journey for them to travel. So many roads lying ahead and diverging paths to choose from, maybe that is why life itself is interesting because it takes you to different places. Even if you can’t travel, your imagination will take you to places. But be careful not to daydream too much. Your mind might wander and never come back…

Those seemingly perfect and lovey-dovey couples we see every day around us. We would like to have that kind of true love ourselves, don’t we? But… What if they are just pretending and putting up an elaborate façade? For whatever reasons, it is the case for a girl in Ookami Shoujo To Kuro Ouji. The title may sound like some sort of twisted fairytale because when you have Wolf Girl and Black Prince together, it is either some messed up comedy or dark romance horror. I can assure you it is not. Because our girl who is prone to lying ends up in a bigger mess just to prove to her friends that she has a freaking cool boyfriend. Sure, it is all fake and pretend play. But that guy she engaged to play her boyfriend isn’t Prince Charming either. His heart is like a black as the night. So if she wants to keep up this charade, better do his biddings, whims and fancies. Be at the beck of his every call. No turning back now. Oh, this isn’t some sick hentai flick if you’re thinking he is going to make her do all that stuffs. More of romantic comedy to see how their fake love blooms into real love over time. Oh come. You should have guessed that when you have a synopsis like that, you can guess where this is going, right?

Episode 1
Erika Shinohara is afraid of being a loner in her high school debut. Her friend, Ayumi Sanda AKA San is more practical but if Erika was the listening type, you wouldn’t have all the troubles that follow and thus this anime. Also, Erika is the kind of girl who loves to brag and lie. Oh, it’ll get her into trouble one day and that day is today. Her first step into class, she is already panicking because everybody else has formed groupies of their own. She’s alone. So she tries to hastily make friends with Marin Tachibana and Aki Tezuka. Because they are the posh type with boyfriends, thus begins Erika’s lie… Two months down the road, they’re still talking about their boyfriends as Erika brags that they have done sex. Erika had to pretend she got a call from her boyfriend who is no other than San to whisk her away from the conversation. She is told to just tell the truth because they don’t even have anything in common. But you know, Erika… Then those girls walk into the toilet that they are. As they hide, they hear Marin and Tezuka talk about Erika’s lie. Maybe she’s faking it because they’ve never seen her boyfriend before. Not even a picture. Not willing to live the rest of her high school life in hell, on her way home she hears lots of girls swooning over a handsome hunk. The kind that they wish to be their boyfriend. Erika gets this idea to take a picture of him, Kyouya Sata. She shows this to her friends. However they have a feeling they have seen him before. I mean, with his awesome good looks, he might be some sort of a model. During recess, it finally hit them. Because Kyouya also walks in. He is a student of their school. Oh crap. Erika takes him and runs away.

At first she thinks he is the nice kind of guy. But after telling her situation, he agrees to pretend and be her boyfriend. Think life is smooth sailing? Well, he tells her to spin around and bark like a dog. Say what? Oh, look at his evil eyes… If he is going to play along with her little farce, it isn’t going to be for free. If she won’t be his dog, he can’t guarantee her secret won’t be exposed. Then her reputation will become like a wolf girl and her parents won’t like it, etc. Instantly she does his bidding. Her troubles are just the beginning. It might seem he is calling her from class like a loving boyfriend. Innocent in the eyes of other jealous girls. But of course in actual fact he is going to make her his lackey. She is trying to guess what he wants. He says he loves dogs but the way he says that with his evil eyes just makes her feel otherwise. Erika’s life becomes a tiring one when she is at Kyouya’s beck at call. Marin and Tezuka figure they play a prank. When they join them for lunch as Erika introduces Kyouya to them, they start mentioning about their kinky S&M bondage play that Erika mentioned (one of those earlier lies). This causes Erika to be embarrassed and the entire cafeteria heard it. Kyouya coolly admits he does. And then with those evil eyes looking at them suggesting he might want to try it out on them. After he apologizes to everyone for the ruckus, he takes Erika’s hand and leave. They hold for a long time because he knows her sceptical friends are still watching. Erika feels guilty for what happened so he tells her off to shut up and be protected as his girlfriend. And that is one more debt for her to be indebted to him. Erika isn’t sure if asking his help was right (definitely it wasn’t) but she’ll continue playing the wolf girl for a while.

Episode 2
On a rainy day, Kyouya shares his umbrella with Erika. All the girls wish they would swap places with her. So Erika is complaining the double face Kyouya is to San. She calls Erika a masochist for putting up with this. She also tells her to get a real boyfriend instead of playing slave girl. But first she needs to find someone to fall in love with and it might be closer than she thinks. After observing all the boys in class, delinquent boys, glutton boys, otaku boys and sissy boys… Just disappointing, no? But more trouble crops up for her. This time the girls of Kyouya’s fan club. The confront her and want her to stop dating him because Kyouya is the school’s idol and there is an unwritten law he must not be owned and admired from afar. Say what? As they get rough with her, a handsome guy, Yoshito Kimura tells them to stop the bullying. It is no surprise that Erika is taken in by his kindness (and good looks) so much so she spaces out so much thinking about him that she spills whatever food and it’s just bloody obvious. Erika even asks Kyouya the girls he dated. He never although he is popular with them because no girl has ever gotten him to be serious in them. Besides, he views romance as an extra in life. Erika’s feelings between the guys grow in different directions. Kimura was kind enough to check on her to see if the bullies come back again. But Kyouya uses her as a shield when the car splash water and when some kids accidentally bump into him and she sniggers, Kyouya makes her fetch a stick and it took her all day. Couldn’t she have just find a similar one instead of really going out to find the actual stick? That’s where her lie comes in handy, right?

Marin and Tezuka see Kimura take Erika to the infirmary after the latter got hit by all sorts of balls! Serious. They tell this to Kyouya and warn his girlfriend might be cheating on hm. Kimura asks if she is free this Sunday and would like to go out with her. Of course she doesn’t want to miss this chance. When Kyouya comes in and the guys are introduced, Kyouya notices Kimura giving that stare to him. After they leave, Kyouya asks Erika for her handphone and breaks it! He doesn’t want her to go meet that guy. He reminds her of her position and has no power to refuse him. But Erika thinks she has an ace up her sleeve. Once she gets a real boyfriend, she can dump him. Against Kyouya’s advice, she goes meet Kimura this Sunday and they have fun in their outing. At the end of the day, Erika confesses Kyouya is not her real boyfriend and explains the situation. She wants him to be her real boyfriend. Suddenly Kimura changes. Why would he date somebody who isn’t Kyouya’s boyfriend? He is disappointed that he wasted time with her because it won’t do if she is not Kyouya’s real girlfriend. He reveals Kyouya stole his girlfriend and stealing his is his way of getting back at him. Erika is reeling from the shock as Kyouya shows up. He knew this would happen. Kimura accuses him of stealing his girlfriend back then but he mentions it was his girlfriend that decided to break up with him. Erika wonders if all Kimura did and said were lies. Kimura mocks for the gullible girl she is and will never fall for a cheap girl like her. Erika is close to tears when Kyouya punches him. He claims Erika belongs to him and it makes him mad for hurting her without a reason. Erika feels ashamed for all of this so he lectures her about her love being just a self delusion and thus no point getting depressed over it. Despite his harsh words, she thinks he is trying to make her feel better. But after he says he needs to train her from the start again, she doesn’t think so.

Episode 3
Unlike her friends, Erika spends the entire summer holidays bumming at San’s place. San teases her that Erika is pouting because Kyouya didn’t call her and she might have fallen for him. There is also a possibility that Kyouya may have fallen for her. Who knows? A person’s feeling can change anytime. At the start of the new term, it is learnt that Kyouya fell sick. As he is in San’s class, San as the class rep is supposed to deliver notes to him but since she had other business, she has Erika do it. And so outside his door, she is nervous thinking of what to say and all that. She’s just thinking too much. Kyouya opens the door to get the things but since he is still drowsy, he bumps into everything. Erika can’t leave him alone and puts him to bed. He explains his father works late and mom doesn’t live with them. He is used to this life and doesn’t think about it. Just leave. Because her presence is just making his cold worse. The next day, the same task. This time Erika stays and is willing to do things for him and stays by his side while he sleeps. Kyouya is sceptical like as though she is trying to make him indebted to her. She says she’s doing it because she wants to and not after anything. By the third day, Kyouya is better but still hasn’t fully recovered. He wants to go to the store himself but Erika is acting like his mother and won’t allow him. Get back in and stay in bed and fully rest. After a long time in what it seems to be Kyouya pondering like the David statue, he thanks her. Woah! Did she hear right? This guy thanking her? She cannot believe it. Hey, even guys like him have the capability of saying thanks. He explains he is sick of girls acting swooning over him with thoughts of wanting him to be their boyfriend. However Erika is different and didn’t harbour such ulterior motives so he decided to at least thank her. That’s all. This makes Erika feel weird. When she leaves, she feels conflicted about her feelings. Her heart is racing thinking about him and they’re not even dating. I can’t think of a reason why.

Next day, Kyouya is back in school and this means his mean attitude towards her too as well as fooling other girls with his nice princely behaviour. Welcome back? Talking this to San, she is made to admit that she likes Kyouya. She advises that she should just follow her feelings honestly and she’ll be happier that way. But the toughest part is going to let him know her feelings. At the park, Erika notices Kyouya playing with a dog. He puts up a very nice smile she has never seen before. She asks if he likes dogs, why not adopt one? Long ago he had one. But it died and it made him sad. The fear of losing it made him decide not to adopt one. Besides, he has a ‘big one’ now, right? Of course Erika doesn’t want to be his dog or fake girlfriend. She wants to be his real girlfriend. But how? When her aunt sends extra pears to them, Erika gets an idea to give some to Kyouya. But at his doorstep, a woman appears to be leaving. Is she some sort of friend? Somebody who picked him up in town. Erika flusters thinking the kind of things that might have happened and tells him to stop doing this kind of things of bouncing between girls. He denies doing that and since she is not his real girlfriend, he has no obligation to tell her anything. Erika says she doesn’t like this one bit. Because she likes him. Although shocked, Kyouya runs his mouth that because she is playing this fake dating game, she is beginning to think she is really in love when she actually isn’t. Yeah. Maybe he is right. Maybe she didn’t want to fall for him after all. She shoves the bag of pears to him and leaves in tears.

Episode 4
When Erika leaves, she comes across that girl again who believes Kyouya didn’t tell her everything. So Erika returns to confront him about done playing with girls and getting a dog. That is her, right? Erika really does like him and she really considered about quitting but since she will never lie about her feelings, she won’t quit. Even if he doesn’t believe her now, she’ll keep saying it till he gets it. Since Kyouya doesn’t like it when she gets persistent, he’ll believe her. He’ll be looking forward to see what happens next. So does he like her or not? Maybe spending her day in anguish at his every command would help. It’s not too late to turn back… Erika talks to San that she needs to work hard to turn him around. But San can’t believe she still likes him after going through all that. She really is a masochist. However San can’t help her out since she doesn’t talk to Kyouya. There goes Erika’s hopes of finding anything she could blackmail him. She was going to do that? Next day, Erika gets a football hit in her face! What is it about her that attracts balls? Takeru Hibiya apologizes and he turns out to be Kyouya’s old friend. This brute guy loves showing off his six pack but he is overall a nice guy. Nice enough for Erika to tell him about the predicament she is in. Takeru wants to beat up Kyouya but Erika doesn’t want to fix his warped personality. Whoever Kyouya is, she likes him. She just wants him to like her the way she does. Takeru is so touched and agrees to help her out. So he starts asking Kyouya a serious of seemingly retarded questions about his favourites. I don’t know if they are related or not. And now to put it to the test. Erika tries to be and act like those ‘favourites’. From an intellect girl to a girl who keeps her distance and finally some retarded Galapagos Island I-don’t-know-what-the-heck-is-this. Kyouya is not moved and San is just embarrassed to see her. Then Takeru’s class is holding a maid café for the school’s festival (all the guys are maids!!!) and Takeru advises her to act like the scared fragile woman so Kyouya can save her. Didn’t work. Feels like she gets played around.

So the duo are at their wits’ end. How are they going to make Kyouya look her way? More importantly, can Erika take more of this stupidity? Takeru is impressed with her because she is working hard and it really makes him want to support her. This time all the silly stuffs that they do, Takeru is by her side. Still didn’t work. Even that final hypnotizing tactic. That desperate, huh? Even if they’re still not going to throw in the towel, Erika suddenly starts crying. It must be hard. Time for drastic measures. That night, Takeru calls Erika and Kyouya to meet him at the park. Takeru confesses he likes Erika and wants to make her his girlfriend. He promises to protect and cherish her. So does Kyouya mind giving Erika to him? Of course. Take her. But this causes Erika to feel hurt. She scolds him and runs away. Takeru is going to beat Kyouya up for not knowing her feelings but Kyouya points out that all this is part of his scheme. He knows they’ve been in cohorts since the start thanks to their poor acting. And now this plan has fallen apart because Kyouya said the opposite thing as he wanted. Even if Erika is working hard to make him like her, he will decide when it is time to fall in love with her. Takeru felt he was so cool that he couldn’t answer back. Erika feels heartbroken. I mean, he said she belongs to him and now he casts her away so easily like that? Kyouya comes to get her and asks if her feelings are all she has to offer. He dares her to wrench open his heart. That is the only way to get him. For now Erika goes back with him and although she still doesn’t understand his thinking and he gets on her nerves, she still loves him. Lastly, Erika tries to apologize and reject Takeru and that guy forgot his pretending sounded like a real confession.

Episode 5
Christmas is coming. Oh. With Marin and Tezuka suggesting they send selfies of each other and their boyfriends to each other, I guess Erika is going to have a tough time asking Kyouya out. He is already painting Christmas as some commercialized scam that he wouldn’t want to participate in but despite saying all that, he still accompanies her. He rudely turns down a saleswoman selling a beautiful ring (because he says he has a much better one) and then suggests of getting a dog collar and a leash for Erika as present. Guess what? Erika really wants it! That surprised you, Kyouya? But it is heartbreak since Kyouya won’t get it since it was only a joke and doesn’t want people to think he has some strange fetish. After they take a selfie at a Christmas tree, Erika’s stomach starts to hurt. Kyouya buys some medicine to make her feel better. This is to repay her for taking care of him then. She really wants to tick him off for his usual indifferent but since Kyouya is playing the nice guy and willing to listen to her, she knows he knows everything and is just fooling around with her. She wants to know if she is just a toy for him to kill time. Suddenly… Kyouya changes. Like Prince Charming, he admits that he likes her! He has been too shy to say it but he has liked her for a long time. Is this for real? This isn’t a dream. So happy this simpleton that she starts crying. She forgives all that has happened and want to spend Christmas Eve with him. And then… Kyouya wonders how long he should keep up this monkey show. I knew it. Too good to be true. He tells her off for being too simple and gullible. She is too trusting that she will get con one day. This means she never understood him because he will never say something so sweet to her. In that moment of rage, Erika splashes the glass of water in his face. She hates him and leaves. Shocking? You reap what you sew.

Erika is now in tears of sadness back home. Crying that she has had enough. She’s tired of it all. Depressed enough for her to lock herself in her room. On Christmas day, her friends send their selfies. Erika wonders if she should do the same. But the thought of them shunning her is better than staying with Kyouya. She doesn’t care if they find out the truth. Of course her heart is still in a dilemma whether to really give up on him as she can’t easily forget him. Surprisingly, Kyouya is here to see her. Not only that, to discipline her. He claims he waited all the time for her to come to apologize but never showed up. Why does she have to apologize for? Throwing water in her master’s face and telling him off, that’s why. I know he deserves it buy Kyouya is going to remind her again that she is his dog. He puts the collar on her. Hey. This collar feels different. It is a pretty necklace. This is proof that she belongs to him and also a real collar would make people suspicious of what he is into. Now the tears of happiness are flowing again. She’ll treasure it. They send a new selfie to her friends. She still wants to believe what he said to her then so he says he loves her.

Episode 6
For the entire winter vacation, Kyouya never called her! So is it no surprise that she’s really happy (or worried) to see him when the new school term starts? Well, at least she had the necklace to get by so it’s not all that bad. Erika thinks of making Valentine chocolates for Kyouya. She can’t wait to do it till she learns he hates sweet things! But noticing her disappointed face and the book she has to make chocolates, he hints as long as she can make something edible, there is no reason for him to say no. Hopes getting up again. While buying ingredients at the store, the cashier line is held up by her timid classmate, Yuu Kusakabe who has forgotten his wallet. Erika pays for him. Although he is very grateful, he is also very apologetic. He is also quite negative because of his personality that makes others uncomfortable. However it is not the case for Erika as she doesn’t view him so and even advises him to have a little self confidence. Next day in school, Kusakabe feels a lot better and thanks to Erika, he has confidence in doing the simplest things. Kyouya didn’t like seeing this so he goes to cuddle Erika to make that shy guy go away. Erika wants Kyouya to meet her during recess as she has chocolates for him. He had hoped she failed. You don’t know how many times she failed prior to this success… Before that meeting, Erika bumps into Kusakabe and because she feels bad about his family predicament (something about them acting strange towards him because of his change in character), she gives him an obligatory chocolate. So happen, Kyouya sees this chocolate in his hands and has a strange feeling. When he meets Erika and sees the same packaging, he throws it back at her. He’s not going to eat it even if he hasn’t taste it. Jealous about Kusakabe? Erika tries to explain the story but what makes him upset is that by doing this, he is put on the same level as him. Erika then runs her mouth how Kusakabe is a better and kinder person than him. Oops… Said too much? Yeah, maybe she can go ask him to play boyfriend then. Suddenly all the fun feeling she had today just washed down the drain. She screwed up somewhere, didn’t she?

Erika spaces out and almost falls down the stairs if not for Kusakabe stopping her. He wants to do something to thank her but she starts crying. Meanwhile Takeru is lecturing Kyouya on the way he treats Erika (while eating his chocolates? Not that Kyouya likes sweet things anyway). He believes his uncalled treatment is because he thinks Erika won’t leave him. He must realize he isn’t the only guy around. Don’t underestimate her. Yada, yada, yada… At the same time, Erika fumes about Kyouya’s attitude to Kusakabe. As usual, that guy keeps apologizing since he feels it is his fault for letting this happen. Erika is confused that she is sticking with Kyouya. Maybe she would be better off if she dumps him. This makes Kusakabe muster his courage. He confesses he likes her and asks if she would like to go out with him. He promises he won’t hurt her like Kyouya does. She doesn’t have to give an answer right away, though. Next day in school when Kyouya and Kusakabe bump into each other, the latter asks if he really loves Erika. None of your business. Because Kyouya continues to talk like he is superior to her and enjoys being a sadist, this makes Kusakabe mad that she is wasted on him. He reveals his confession and is waiting for her answer. That shock you, my prince? But as usual, he remains indifferent, giving the green light for them to do whatever they want with each other. Does this mean Kyouya never loved Erika? She is just something to pass the time. And as cliché it would get, Erika heard it all.

Episode 7
And so Erika has decided. She goes up to that jerk and says she quits. Yeah, you tell him. And thus they parted ways. Like nothing happened. But Erika is still crying… Although she is good friends with Kusakabe, her friends find it odd that Erika just ‘downgraded’. Now that Kyouya is single again, many girls are trying to give him chocolates or confess to him but he just ignores them. Although he is scarier now, they still love him! Girls, can’t understand them… Each time Kyouya and Erika pass, they just ignore each other like they never existed. Erika and Kusakabe spend lots of time together but San feels something is not right despite Erika relishing in her freedom and trying to pursue a new romance. Because when Erika sees a girl confessing to Kyouya (he’s just zoning out), she becomes clumsy and scraps her knee. At the infirmary, there is Kyouya too and the atmosphere gets weird. He mocks her for setting the bar low but she’d rather have it this way than those setting it high that they look down on others. Kyouya then asks if she loves Kusakabe. None of his business. That answer means she doesn’t really love him. So does she intend to fall for him in the future? She will. Now that they are strangers, he should find other fun stuffs to kill time. Erika hangs out with Kusakabe at the aquarium. They had a swell time. Takeru is there with his friends and happen to see them. He calls Kyouya to scold him over what he saw but he never said anything and hangs up.

Erika is happy as Kusakabe mentions he sincerely did it all for her sake. But then San’s words and flashes of Kyouya’s face start to fill Erika’s mind. Oh no… Because now she has arrived at an answer. She apologizes to Kusakabe she can’t return his feelings. WTF. She still has lingering feelings for Kyouya. WTF. To say that she was through being wolf girl and wanting to find a new romance was just an excuse to run away. She is sorry for doing this to him. Kusakabe had a feeling of something like this when he confessed. He is cool with it. Erika doesn’t want to lie to herself anymore as deep down in her heart she wants to be in love with Kyouya. Kusakabe doesn’t want her to apologize as he too understands what it’s like to run away. Thanks to her, he discovered a lot of things about himself. I hope you’re regretting your decision, Erika? You’d rather dump this nice guy to go back with the jerk? Girls, can’t understand them… And look, she’s crying now that she’ll try her best to get Kyouya to love her back. And speaking of him, here he is to take her back. Is this okay? Okay it is. Since Erika is still whiny about his behaviour, he shuts her up with a kiss. Erika doesn’t understand his erratic behaviour. Yeah, we don’t understand her love for him at all. She doesn’t want to go with the flow and wants him to admit it. Say it for real and not because they’re pretending. She makes a surprise move by kissing him. She’ll make him her real boyfriend instead of a fake one. But Kyouya corrects her that he is the one allowing her to love him. That didn’t annoy her and she continues to be the happy simpleton.

Episode 8
Erika wants to go hanami with Kyouya but that guy isn’t interested in going to crowded events. Eventually he had to after he lost in a rock-scissors-paper game. But whatever Erika suggests, he doesn’t want to do. It is more annoying watching other couples do lovey-dovey stuff. Finally the boat ride, he too doesn’t want and this makes Erika mad. They’re a couple and should do what couples normally do. Whoever imposed such a rule? She planned all this herself and if she wants to go for a boat ride so badly, go herself. Fine. Erika alone in the boat. It really looks odd. When it’s over and they take a break eating takoyaki, Erika suggests watching DVD like he wanted next time. She doesn’t want to force him anymore. Then this surprising request from Kyouya. Feed him! OMG! Did he say that? Even Erika can’t believe it. I guess once in a while you need to make your dog girl happy. Now that they are in their second year, Erika is so glad that she is in the same class with San. And more so because Kyouya too. Also in this class is another handsome Playboy, Nozomi Kamiya who has his own little harem of admirers! New rival? Nozomi thinks Erika and co are his harem girls and that they are the same type. Erika is sad that she is seated so far away from Kyouya but next to Nozomi. He doesn’t hesitate to flirt with her and asks for her number. Sure, she knows he is hitting on her and her flattery and good looks are one thing. Because the duo didn’t concentrate in class, the teacher makes them the organizing committee members for orientation.

So the duo have to stay back and do some paper work. Nozomi continues to flirt with her and suggests hanging out for some adult fun. Nozomi’s girlfriend calls and the way he sounds make it like they are a couple. Erika wonders if it is fine flirting around despite having a girlfriend. However he says Hiromi isn’t his girlfriend and definitely not dating. She is one of the many girls he likes. Nozomi believes that when you become a couple, you are attached and tied down with lots of unwritten rules. He doesn’t like that. It is much more fun to have all kinds of experience with various girls. He treats everyone nice, everybody has fun, everybody is happy. Erika wonders what if a girl gets the wrong idea and gets serious about him. He knows she is talking about herself and wonders if she is serious in Kyouya. When he learns they are really dating, he decides to drop the subject. When they’re done, Erika is surprised and happy to see Kyouya waiting for her. Yeah sure, he got nothing better to do. When she returns to the class to retrieve something, Nozomi asks Kyouya if he is dating Erika seriously. He can’t believe he is because a guy like Kyouya could date and dump as many girls he wants. And of all girls, why pick plain Jane Erika? Super rich? Convenient yes man? Got some dirt on him? Good in bed? That was the last straw as Kyouya is about to get rough with him when Erika returns. After they leave, Nozomi deduces Kyouya has gotten serious about Erika based on his reaction. He thinks he is being stupid and needs to open his eyes.

Episode 9
Erika’s class is going on a field trip. She notices Nozomi being friendly with him but Kyouya is rejecting him. Even more upsetting that the guys are seated together and Erika ended up with San. So what’s the problem? Marin and Tezuka tease that the guys might end up in some yaoi relationship and Erika really gets worried. Nozomi shows Kyouya all the girls he knows but Kyouya is clearly not interested. Erika talks to Nozomi and the latter’s smooth talk convinces her that he just wants to be friends and open up his heart. During the hike, Nozomi tries to introduce some of his girls to him. They want to exchange numbers but he doesn’t have a handphone. Nozomi knows it’s a lie and again tries to persuade him to change his ways. Whatever Nozomi calls it, Kyouya doesn’t want to be part of it and warns not to push his ideals onto him. When he feels like making a move, he will do it and doesn’t need his advice. Nozomi isn’t convinced and it seems he may need to use force to make him understand. He calls some of his girls to come visit the boys’ room. Meanwhile Erika is thinking too much about Kyouya that she almost burnt her hair with the hair dryer! Marin and Tezuka suggest to go visit his room. This gets her hopes up till they mention they can only see her fail. San wonders why she wants the guys to be friends so badly. Erika remembers her predicament when she was alone and somehow forced her way to become friends with Marin and Tezuka. They might not be the best of friends but at least they were there to encourage at comfort her sometimes. She doesn’t think Kyouya has such friends.

The girls visit the boys’ room and clearly the other guys are thanking God for this heaven sent. But since Kyouya is sitting this out, the girls wonder if they will be a bother and want to leave. This has the guys force him to come with them so Kyouya reluctantly to hangs out with them. They play the King Game and when the time is right, Nozomi sets up Kyouya to kiss with one of the girls. He believes no men can resist his natural instincts. But be surprised because Kyouya pushes her away and decides to leave for the night. Outside, Nozomi confronts him about that. Kyouya will not be led around like that. Nozomi says he is doing all this for him and that he should broaden his thinking. He shows all the 500 email addresses of the girls he has. So? This means he is having 500 times more fun than him! Kyouya calls it bad maths and tells it to his face. No matter how much trash he picks up, it is still a pile of trash. Nozomi is left to ponder his words when one of the girls, Yuri comes by. He wants to be consoled by her but it seems another guy asked her out and she is serious in that. Can’t hang out with him anymore. So delete her from his list? Only 499 more to go… On the return trip, Erika is happy because she won’t be separated from Kyouya anymore. To her surprise, he sits next to her and uses her shoulder as a pillow. She didn’t wake him up when they get back because he was sleeping soundly. As they argue, Nozomi says not to flirt in from of him. It’s embarrassing. He mentions about Yuri’s address he erased but had no regrets. He believes Kyouya was right. He doesn’t care about anything he has because having 1 girl who is special is more than enough. Will he ever get one? Kyouya believes he will because he was once like him. Once Nozomi gets a real girlfriend, they should double date. No thanks. Erika can’t help put up that smirk on her face after seeing their friendship.

Episode 10
Nozomi is hanging out with Kyouya so close that other girls may start to get the wrong idea about them. You jealous, Erika? This month, Erika has something to look forward to. It’s her birthday. Will Kyouya guess it? Guess not. She’s really begging with puppy dog eyes to celebrate that special day with her. He obliges but what does she want on that day? Hmm… How about love? WTF. So Kyouya is talking to Takeshi and Nozomi about this. They give their ideas on what Kyouya can do on that special day. Takeshi seems knowledgeable despite he himself doesn’t have a girlfriend. San hears from Erika about her date plan on her birthday. So she is mapping it out herself what she wants to do on her birthday? And besides, doesn’t her love request sound ridiculous? Actually, she wants him to at least say “I love you” once. Kyouya overheard it so he thought it was a piece of cake and practises alone. He can’t. Tough, eh? So he picks her up on her birthday and he still can’t find the guts to say those right words. Not so easy, eh? At a fancy restaurant, he gives her a bracelet as present and she is very happy. This makes it a total of 2 gifts from him. He puts his face close to her but backs out. Can’t find the guts, eh? Meanwhile Takeshi is showing Nozomi pictures of young Kyouya. Funny… They wonder how is his date going and decide to give him some spiritual support. Yeah. Their support is echoing through the universe that Kyouya could feel the chill down his spine.

When they go watch a movie, Erika isn’t sure if he wants to see a serious love story. He asserts he can watch any movie. Unfortunately it is tough for him to take since the guy is a wimp while the girl is chiding him that he can’t say those simple 3 magic words. And that guy is screaming… Sounds familiar? It gets to him when he hears comments from other girls how wimpy that guy was and thankfully their boyfriends aren’t like that. He tries to do it this time but still got cold feet. Outside, a cheeky kid teases them how lovey-dovey they are. Erika is a natural talking to kids even though you shouldn’t be talking to random kids in the first place. The girl then asks Kyouya if he loves Erika and if he doesn’t, does it mean he is a bad man? How should he answer this one? Well, he put on his evil face and instantly the girl cries! OMG! She’s even complaining how scary it was to her mom! The duo spend the rest of the day without any incident. Night falls and as they take a ferry ride, the mood may seem just right for Kyouya to finally sum up his courage to say it. Can he? Nope. He ends up complimenting her hairdo. I don’t know if it is a good thing or not that Erika is too dumb to guess. But then again, she has learnt not to expect too much from him. Before they part, Erika expresses how happy she is and this is the best birthday she had. She thanks him and naturally confesses she loves him. Suddenly Kyouya hugs her. It is to avoid getting her run over by a car. Really? Then he whispers something into her ears. I think he must have nailed it because is so shock-cum-happy. Never knew he could say that, huh? He continues to squeeze her tightly. It doesn’t matter because this is the best birthday she’ll never forget. And of course, she loves him back too.

Episode 11
Nozomi teases Erika that she better not lose what Kyouya gave her or else… Yeah, she’ll have to swim halfway around the world to get it back! When they are hanging out, Erika thinks she has touched a landmine when Kyouya doesn’t want to talk about his mom. He adds he has not childhood trauma, abandonment issues or grudges. Then they see a woman coolly telling off a guy who wants to hit on her. Kyouya with that flabbergasted look could only mean one thing… Yeah… They know each other. Instantly she goes up to him and slaps him! She is Reika and Kyouya’s big sister. That was for not answering her calls. She lives with mom in Kobe and visits Kyouya once or twice every year. Erika starts to panic thinking she will become her future sister-in-law. She stammers as she introduces herself as Kyouya boyfriend. Reika sounds like a mean dominating sister that Kyouya can’t even put up with. Is this the future sister-in-law she is going to have? Does this attitude run in the family? Back in his home, Reika is sceptical that Erika is his girlfriend because with his kind of face that attracts girls, who would fall for a brat like him? She thinks if he is doing this for fun, just break up with her. But seeing he is serious, she can’t actually believe it. So she calls Erika out for a date. Erika thinks this is some sort of interrogation and big sister is going to find out if she is worthy of Kyouya or not. Alright. Time to make a good impression. But they hop from sweets and cakes stores to another. Can Erika take more of it? Is this some sort of test to see her limit? Like if she could hold her sake? When a couple of boys try to hit on them, Reika’s sarcastic and mean suggestion scares them. Reika explains she hates half hearted flirting guys. They treat women like fools and think they can go out with a girl if they get lucky. They’re just boys. Kyouya too.

Erika wonders if this means Kyouya’s feelings for her are just lukewarm. As his sister, she can’t believe she has changed. Erika tries to prove so but makes up exaggerates up the facts. But Reika starts laughing uncontrollably at those ‘jokes’. That’s when Erika snaps back. What’s so funny? She thinks she knows everything because she’s family? Even Kyouya can love. It is her who is treating him like a fool. Reika is impressed she can talk back. Erika won’t stand for anyone badmouthing her boyfriend even if it’s his sister. Reika suggests a challenge. If she wins, she’ll apologize. Tiger versus dog… This might get ugly… Meanwhile Kyouya is hanging out at Takeru’s place. Can you blame him for not wanting to go back when his sister is temporarily staying there? Suddenly he gets a call from Reika to get his ass down to this hotel. He doesn’t want to until he hears how Erika is in a bad shape. She snapped back at her so she took care of it. Instantly that guy heads there and you can see that he is freaking serious that if anything happens to Erika, he’s got a lot more to say back to big sister than her. Then this scene… Erika vomits!!! Ugly. Seems Reika challenged her to an eating contest and since Erika was full from all those cakes, she threw up. Reika slaps Kyouya and then makes him pay the bill. Kyouya learns the truth from Erika of what led up to this. Erika almost fell for his love trap but felt disappointed she let her guard down since things have been going good for a while. Reika is convinced that Kyouya has changed although this feels creepy. She likes Erika because she has got guts and wants to invite her to Kobe to meet their mother. Too bad, she has no say and before she knows it, Erika is already there. So is their mother as mean as them? Well… Holy cow! Big tanned masculine mama! I thought it was some body builder in drag!

Episode 12
Actually that is the big mama from the bar whom they know. Their real mother is a normal and nice lady. Phew. Well, maybe not totally normal because she’s telling Erika silly jokes in hopes to get her to like her. I’m not sure if she’s drunk. Unfortunately Kyouya is being anti-social and holes himself up in his room. Later Reika explains about their family situation. Their parents were divorced when they were young and it had an effect on Kyouya. Although he said he was not mad or anything, he accepted it by closing his heart and gave up. Mother always blamed herself for causing Kyouya to be suspicious of romance and it is only natural he hates her. So with Erika around, she might have changed his perception of that. That night, Reika and Erika dress in their yukata and are about to leave for the fireworks festival when Kyouya surprisingly joins them. However he seems not wanting to do fun things like as though he is here just to dampen the mood with his frown. Erika thought it was strange for him to suddenly come. She thinks he is thinking about his mom and buys some foodstuffs for him to give her. However he tells her off that strangers need not butt in. She’s no stranger. Well, he didn’t ask her. Fine. Erika angrily walks off. Not again. Of course Erika knows this isn’t enough to get her down. Figuring Kyouya isn’t being honest as expected, she calls his mom to come but she turns her down believing Kyouya won’t have fun if she’s around. That’s when Erika starts lying that the siblings got into a fight and it’s getting messy. Because some inconsiderate people accidentally bump into Erika, mother thinks something bad has happened. Erika is glad the first hurdle is passed but she realizes her necklace is gone. And she’s near the dump side. Where to look?

Kyouya and Reika start looking for Erika but cannot find her. When mother arrives, they believe Erika went missing about 30 minutes ago when Kyouya fought with her, about the same time Erika called her. Mother agrees to help look for her. It may sound embarrassing mother is screaming for Erika’s name but save the embarrassment for later because Erika is Kyouya’s precious girlfriend. When they hear commotion near the dump site that a girl is searching for something, Erika is pretty messed up and still trying to find the lost necklace. How many bags of trash has she opened? It may just be an object to others, but it is something precious from Kyouya. She doesn’t want to lose not a single of her precious connections to him. Kyouya starts looking with her and thanks for the fireworks, the light reflects off the shiny metal part of the necklace hidden between the bins. Back home, Kyouya thanks mom for helping him. She is glad he has found a good girl like Erika but that guy still won’t admit it and says it is her clinging to him. He promises to come here more often. Reika also apologizes to Erika for saying mean things about her brother. He was never the type to do things for people. I guess a woman really does mature a man. Next day, they see Kyouya and Erika off at the train station. Reika gave Erika some photos of the siblings when they were young. In school, Erika brags and exaggerates of her time with Kyouya to her friends. Till Kyouya has a talk with her. Then he deletes the photos in her handphone. Her treasure gone. By why have that when you can have the real one? Yes, a real kiss!

Real Love Don’t Lie!
With so many of such romantic comedies around, each is trying to be a little different from the other. Therefore I am with mixed feelings trying to decide that this series is a good one or just another run of the mill romantic comedy. It’s your typical shoujo type anime of girl meets boy and falls for him. The plot and story is simple but hardly anything impressive because for the 2 main characters, some may find them annoying and hardly anything likeable in terms of their personality. For one, Erika started off as a big liar while Kyouya is some prince on a high horse who is riding so high, he thinks he is superior than everyone else. I know 2 wrongs don’t make a right but we’re not talking about morals here. Love is like maths because when 2 negatives come together, it becomes positive. See what it did here when you throw these characters who are a mess themselves together?

In such genres, characters play an important role but as I have already pointed out in my previous paragraph, the main duo are already having negative traits may not appeal to viewers. But I guess it is for comedy’s sake because it would be funny to see and know how Erika gets herself into when this lie starts out. I guess you’re supposed to laugh at her when that happens. And although each time she is put down by one of Kyouya’s indifference, in the end she doesn’t give up. I guess the only good part of her is her perseverance. There are so many times when she is about to break and you might think she will this time but she proves us wrong and gets back on her feet. What doesn’t kill you makes you strong. She just won’t be defeated. Therefore if you don’t succeed at first, try, try and try again. Well, this only makes her look like a masochist, doesn’t it? Well, at least she makes us laugh with all the funny moments.

Erika is having a roller coaster ride of emotions trying to put up with Kyouya who isn’t exactly pushing her away but more like playing hard to get. As she sincerely tries to win his heart and be his true girlfriend, it feels that her lies and part of playing the wolf girl stopped till the final scenes just to remind her why this anime is named so. Even if she didn’t, she wasn’t as good as before. Well, not to say that she is one good liar but she has always gotten this far with her exaggerations but since getting Kyouya as her pretend boyfriend, she just dug a hole so deep that you could actually drop out from the other side of the planet. So I’m not sure if this is a good thing or a blessing in disguise because despite her lies getting her into real trouble, she ended up nailing it and getting the big prize. Therefore I am hoping that this show doesn’t send the wrong message that lying could land you a good looking guy. It’s just funny and sometimes pitiful to see Erika going through a myriad of emotions from love sick to just everything. All she truly wants is just to be in love and to be loved back. Heck, every girl wants that too.

And then there is Kyouya who is playing hard to get thanks to his superiority complex. From the teasing flashback, it indicates to us that something may have gone wrong for him to be this way. But somehow I can’t feel let down by the revelation that it was just his parents’ divorce. Of course, it is understandable that as a kid, it is a big shock and will scar the rest of your life when daddy and mommy dearest decide to split up the family. Even more disappointing was the destroyed snowman turned out to be just Reika’s naughty doing. It was shown like as though it was the key to whatever trauma he had. Nope. Yeah. Maybe as a little kid that can be quite traumatic too. So in the end after all that bugging, he gives in, right? He might not be honest with himself but veteran viewers can tell he loves her as much as she does for him despite all that excuses of following her out, buying gifts and saving her from punks who like to hit on any pretty girl they see. That is his way of showing his love, I guess. And that final kiss seals it. I don’t think that is a bluff.

Therefore it is sometimes funny yet frustrating to see the interaction between Erika and Kyouya. The ups and downs in their relationship. She wants to get close to him but he pushes away. Every time she breaks the door down, he builds another one up. Heck, he even made her cry a few times! That’s bad for a guy, right? Even with only a dozen episodes, their love is progressing slowly but surely although you sometimes don’t know which way it is going because when it seemed like going down, then suddenly it u-turns and goes back up, vice versa. Heck, otherwise it wouldn’t live up to its series’ name. Just like real life, perhaps it is to reflect that real love doesn’t come easy and there are lots of struggles and obstacles to overcome. I know it would be easy for them if they just be honest with each other but then again like I’ve said, what is the series’ name again? Also, it shows that even pretty boys like Kyouya who can get any girl he wants isn’t perfect. It is because he can’t nail a decent girlfriend before Erika showed up is proof of that. Thus I have been thinking had Erika never showed up in his life, would he have turned gay? Unthinkable!

Other side characters feel okay although they are only relevant for that little arc. After that, they don’t feel important or relevant anymore since the entire series revolves around Kyouya and Erika. Duh. I feel like they serve as just the next stepping stone for Erika in her quest to win Kyouya’s heart. Starting off with Kimura who wants revenge against him (at least he is seen in the final scene hooking up with someone. So I guess he’s already gotten over that episode), then with best friend Takeru trying to match make them (show me those abs again dude!), the shy guy Kusakabe whom Erika could have gotten a happy ever after ending but turned him down because he wasn’t as cool as Kyouya (I still can’t believe she rejected this nice guy!!!), Nozomi the big Playboy trying to turn Kyouya into a harem believer (he got converted instead) and finally big sister-cum-big bully making her mark (thankfully being mean doesn’t run in the family because mommy is such a nice woman).

As for recurring supporting characters, they too aren’t making a great impact overall on the story. Because like for San, there is only a limit how much a best friend can do and cover for her. More than that, you’re on your own. So she’s there sometimes giving advice and somebody Erika could talk to. Otherwise, she’s not making as much impact as the rest. Oddly, I am wondering if there is going to be some sort of side romance between Nozomi and San. In the final episode, it seems hinting that Nozomi is interested in her but she is clearly ignoring him. Now that he is free from his girls, he has no one to hang out with but why bug San? It could only mean that, right? I’m not sure if Nozomi is going to do an Erika by persevering till San gives in. But that would be another story. As for Marin and Tezuka, those are the kind of friends you can write off as b*tches. They’re like bad company but a mild one. Clearly they don’t fit with Erika but since she is so desperate then, anything goes. I’m guessing Erika values her friendship with them despite at times they talk bad and play pranks on her so they can’t be all that bad, huh?

As with this kind of romance genres, the art and drawing is of course leaning towards your bishoujo and bishonen types. Every main and supporting character and even the backgrounds characters here look good enough that you wonder if there are ugly people in this world. Because it is ironic that if falling in love with physical appearances is a factor for one to fall in love, then heck, anybody could fall in love with anybody. So bad boys, loser boys, delinquent girls, mean girls, mothers and even that hunky mama (?!) can still look this good, nobody has to worry about putting on beauty products. Ahem. Before I get carried away, let me just summarize that the art is typical and good for this kind of genre so there is nothing to complain. So much so, it is pretty normal by today’s standards nowadays.

Voice acting feels okay. Kanae Itou (Ohana in Hanasaku Iroha) takes on Erika’s role while Takahiro Sakurai (Suzaku in Code Geass) does Kyouya. The rest of the other casts include Ai Kayano as San (Mei in Sukitte Iinayo), Yoshitsugu Matsuoka as Nozomi (Kirito in Sword Art Online), Yoshimasa Hosoya as Takeru (Shichika in Katanagatari), Ayumu Murase as Kusakabe (Jaw in Kiseijuu), Mai Nakahara as Reika (Mai in Mai-HiME), Mariya Ise as Marin (Levi in Fairy Tail) and Mikako Komatsu as Tezuka (Tsugumi in Nisekoi). The opening theme is a generic rock pop song, Love Good Time by SpecialThanks while the ending theme is Ookami Heart by Oresama which sounds like a pop piece mixing in some synthesizer sound effects. Personally, I find this quite okay and better than the opener.

I know that everyone wants to make a good impression because first impression always counts. But exaggerating and going so far as to lie is never cool. Even white lies have its limits. But are you willing to leave it all to fate? Erika shows here how she ditched that fate thingy and tried to control destiny with her hands. Well, it took her a lot of tries, though. All in all, this light-hearted series has some funny and romantic moments that is overall enjoyable and nothing too heavy. But because of Miss Liar and Mr Superior overwhelming everything with that negative trait of theirs, some may find it less palatable. After all, they are just humans like the rest of us. They are flawed and want to experience love. So put in the effort and work towards love because in the end, that will never betray or lie to you.

Perhaps because of the lewdness and immorality that many find distasteful to even sub Yondemasu Yo, Azazel-san OVA 4. Or maybe it was just forgotten along the way. Whatever the reason, I’m glad to have finally caught this latest OVA. Warning, though. Be prepared for some sick humour. Especially about a certain female anatomy that would usually send many straight guys crazy. You will never see it the same way as you did before. And if you really haven’t seen a real one before, I hope this won’t ‘scar’ you for the rest of your life. You’re saying that it is that bad? Well, why don’t you watch it and find out? Hehehehe…

Beware the vaginas…
Koutarou is forced to help Akutabe move to a new location for his agency due to the events at the end of the first season where the angels discovered his location. He thought he is being paid for his services. However this money is for him to buy fake grimoires to fool angels like the last time. He wants 100 of them by the end of the week. Yeah, how is it enough with only 5,000 Yen? Even the porn DVDs are a better bargain. Uh huh. 3 DVDs for that same price! Azazel becomes a smooth operator to convince him to buy it and back at the office as they’re eagerly start watching it, it is already as boring as f*ck because the guy is just talking instead of f*cking. And when the real deal of pulling down her panties is going to happen, WHAT THE HELL IS THIS ANEMONE VAGINA???!!! Is this horror porn?! FREAKING TRAUMATIZED!!! Koutarou knows they’re screwed for. They’ve been trolled by this porn and Akutabe is going to kill them. Azazel of course blames only Koutarou that it was all his fault and escapes. To Koutarou’s horror, Akutabe might have been standing there watching them. Koutarou tries to say he found this porn but Gusion’s truth telling ways threaten to reveal the real deal. Koutarou thought he could order Gusion to eat Akutabe’s memories. Didn’t work. Failed big time. One bloody monkey on the window. Akutabe then reminds him. He did say he could do whatever he wants with the money. However if he doesn’t get his grimoires by the end of the week, you’re dead meat… Oh sh*t…

The next day as Sakuma accompanies Koutarou to his new school, he tries to ask her for help but she knows the sh*t he is in and like any other people, she doesn’t want to get involved and tells him to own up to his sh*t. They meet the principal who suspiciously looks like the one from his previous school. Clones? Twins? Whatever. She takes them tour around the school and there is this topless woman statue, Koutarou thought he could peek underneath the skirt but guess what he saw? ANEMONE VAGINA???!!! WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE???!!! Now the principal wants to show her vagina to him… Rose garden, she says? Don’t trust… The sculptor of the statue, Osamu Osanai turns out to be in the same class Koutarou is put in. He thought he was just some eager beaver student who loves to study but you don’t know how wrong you are. Because during PE class as the teacher talks about dicks and vaginas, Osanai keeps pestering to see the real deal and wants to call a real girl to show it to them! Is he that desperate? Oh yes he is because he goes into the girls’ class and requests the teacher to show it to him!!! Koutarou starts making his fake grimoires when he discovers a stack of notes in Osanai’s desk. You guessed it. His life is on the line. But as he tries to pay with the money at the store, the clerk notices it is counterfeit and calls the cop. Run!

Meanwhile, Osanai summons his raccoon familiar, Ose and wants him to continue using his copying ability. Seems Ose is sickened by the fact that Osanai always wants him to copy vaginas! Is he really that obsessed with it???!!! However as explained, Ose’s copying skills are only as good as the knowledge and memories of the contractor’s. Yup. This means…. ANEMONE VAGINA!!!!!!!! Has this kid never ever seen a real one?! Desperate, he puts a hidden camera in the toilet bowl of the girls’ toilet. Koutarou is spying on him. The previous night when he showed Sakuma the fake note, everyone discusses that Osanai might be a summoner and Ose could be the likely demon who is copying and making the counterfeit notes. But what fake money and anemone vaginas have to do in common is beyond their comprehension. Koutarou confronts Osanai but Azazel becomes a big bully harassing Ose to copy some porn. He is sent falling down to a bloody splatter by Osanai’s wind power. Koutarou has a request to have him copy 100 fake grimoires for him but he refuses. Why should he help others? He talks about Solomon’s Ring which is said to turn demons into weak/cute animal forms and make them obedient. Koutarou has no idea what he is talking about.

Koutarou won’t let this go yet and steals the hidden camera. When Osanai is about to watch some real vaginas from his home’s computer, suddenly the principal walks in and sits down… OMG!!! OMFG!!!!!!!!!!!!! RAFFLESIA VAGINA!!!!!!!! MY EYES!!! ARGH MY EYES!!!!!!! NOOOOO!!!!! INSTANT DEATH!!!!! SO HORRIBLE THAT THE COMPUTER MONITOR EXPLODED!!!!!! AAAAARRRRGGHHHHH!!!! It is obvious that Osanai never turned up in class for the next 3 days and when he does, he is like an old man zombie. The traumatic memories are still killing him right now!!! Koutarou has Gusion eat his memories to revert him to normal. Of course he wants the grimoire copies in exchange for that. Osanai won’t be fooled into doing it since he knows this was his doing. Gusion spits back his memories. Want to relive that horrible trauma again? And so Koutarou’s ass is safe as he managed to get 100 fake grimoires for Akutabe although that guy barely passes him for it (inside the grimoires are only written ‘penis’ – had enough of vaginas, eh?). Koutarou has one more last request to make: Be his friend. Both guys agree but in actual fact, they have the same ulterior motive to use the other. Ah yes, a start of a beautiful friendship… At least no vaginas…

Don’t Fall For The Wrong Hole!
As expected, this OVA lives up to the lewdness, nonsense and crazy perversion this series is infamous for. Fans and old time viewers will find this OVA ‘enjoyable’ with all that bizarre crap from bushy jungle armpit hair to the horrifying anemone vaginas. You’ll laugh and cringe all at the same time and even having your guts, brains and eyeballs explode in splattering fashion. This OVA has it all. Comedy, blood, fanservice, supernatural and horror all under one roof. I suppose this OVA gives Koutarou a pretty decent screen time as other regular characters like Sakuma, Akutabe and even Azazel have very limited screen time. Though, it is expected each time Azazel appears, it would be nothing good. Anything that comes out from his mouth is either porn or bullying. I remember seeing Osanai and Ose making their appearance in the first episode of the second season but nothing much more was explained about them nor do they appear anymore later on in that season. Therefore this fourth OVA is a nice bridge to see how Koutarou and Osanai come into contact and became ‘friends’. Not forgetting, this episode also serves as a ‘good lesson’ to always expect the unexpected. Don’t rush into something before fully being prepared for its consequences. Especially you vagina loves out there, don’t be too quick to pull down panties just to glimpse of that heavenly hole. Now that you know what is in store, be sure to make it safe first for viewing pleasure ;). Who’d know that vaginas can be this fearsome. I hope you don’t go looking for penis after this…

Hey. What is this? Using a cute zombie girl to promote Hokkaido?! This anime adaptation I must see! And so that is how I came to watch Francesca: Girls Be Ambitious. I might have not done any extensive research over the internet but I can’t find any more information regarding this undead girl being used as a mascot to promote the second largest island of Japan in other parts of the nation. Maybe I’m not looking right. But anyway I thought it was just fascinating to use a zombie character to promote that cold region (it’s in the very north, right?). Wouldn’t that scare the kids away? Ah well, when your characters turn moe, anything is possible.

Episode 1
In the cold freezing land of Hokkaido, Exorcist comes to the rescue of a mother and daughter pair from… Resurrected zombies! Yes. Resurrected zombies, not bears. As explained, Hokkaido is a region with many undead but there are far too many of them by now. Exorcist tries to trace the revived zombies and to her dismay sees them flirting! Is this some sort of a love triangle brewing between Takuboku Ishikawa, Chieko Tachibana and Koyakko? Hey, even the undead needs some love. Exorcist is mad that she came all the way here only to see them flirting. But nevertheless, despite their harmless appearance, they are still the undead. This means she must eliminate them. So she chases Takuboku with her chain gun (only him?). She wants to know why they are resurrecting the dead and believes it is for something evil. Like they would know. Exorcist detects another undead movement at Mt Youtei. Inazou Nitobe and William Smith Clark have just reached the peak and are attack by zombie guards who want to prevent them from resurrecting something. While Inazou fends them off, Clark starts his ritual. The most powerful undead is summoned and awakened: Francesca! So powerful that she destroys the zombie guards in a single strike! Holy sh*t! Was it a mistake to resurrect her? She is going to take out her vengeance on those who awakened her from her slumber when suddenly she is struck by lightning (did her brains just ran out?). When she wakes up, she becomes a ditzy, happy go lucky zombie girl. Are we really screwed this time?

Episode 2
Exorcist makes a report of the undead she has spotted back at her HQ. But she is not pleased to find Francesca, Clark and Inazou hanging out here! Nowhere to go? Since they’re making the place like their home, she fires her gun. Don’t worry, the bullets will only hurt the undead. Yeow! The guys try to explain the reason they revive Francesca is to stop some unprecedented evil. Thing is, they forgot what it is. FFFUUUUUUU!!!! And during all that distraction, Francesca went out by herself. To eat corn. Mmm. Tasty. Heck, the guys even start buying them and Exorcist is forced to pay on their behalf. Might as well have one for herself. She is going to continue shooting them. At first she targets Francesca but changes her mind to Clark. This causes the old brown statue to theorize that she fears Francesca fearsome personality and would rather target an unarmed old man. Like she cares. She just shoots! Meanwhile Takuboku and his ladies witness the resurrection of the Shinsengumi zombie led by Toshizou Hijikata. At first they thought he was the cool kind of evil but realize he may be a little bit dumb from the way he talks. Back to Exorcist, Francesca almost accidentally killed Inazou with her corn. So how is she not a threat to Hokkaido? Yeah well, she tries to throw the corn to her zombie dog, Franken to play fetch but her arm was sent flying with it. While Clark tries to give various excuses why she is not, Exorcist gets a call that many undead are spotted. Hijikata and his men are on a ship ready to set sail to Sapporo and revive the Republic of Ezo (old name for Hokkaido). Suddenly an unidentified missile is seen flying their way. It is Francesca’s arm! It hits the ship and sinks it. There goes their revival.

Episode 3
Since their ship has been sunk, the only way left is to travel by train. How uncool. And Hijikata might be having motion sickness… I guess they couldn’t resist stopping by the tourist spots and sampling the local food along the way, huh? More headache for Exorcist as she receives a huge amount of bills. Francesca and the guys have been going on a spending spree and putting it on Exorcist’s tabs. The delicacy crabs are real expensive… They claim those are basic necessities. Hey, even the undead needs to live, right? But how is going to the karaoke part of basic necessities? Time to face the firing squad again. They are interrupted when Hijikata and his Shinsengumi have arrived and announce their goal of reviving Republic of Ezo. This is when Clark remembers the reason he resurrected Francesca to stop him. Hijikata is not convinced that Hokkaido already has a future and he plans to fulfil the shogunate’s wish. He failed the last time in the last war and will never go back on his word to bring back that past nation even after his death. Exorcist fires her gun but she runs out of bullets. She requests HQ to send more but was told they went over the budget. Curse those guys for racking up the bill! Francesca catches the eye of Hijikata. Calm and bold but yet there is madness concealed in her eyes. Viewing her as their long lost enemy, he prepares to cut her down. But she’s a zombie, remember? Anything cut off from her she can easily put it back. Or maybe it’s just dumb luck. When she hears her corn is ready, the mere turn is so powerful it causes Hijikata to be hurled away! Francesca enjoys her corn unaware of what is happening. Hijikata views her as a formidable enemy and is going to get serious. Can you wait till she finishes her corn?

Episode 4
Yeah. Francesca is definitely more interested in eating her corn. Hijikata attacks but she is reduced to just dodging. She isn’t the frightening creature we saw her on Mt Youtei. They realized her brains ran away so Clark throws her a new one. Nothing changes. Crab brain?! WTF?! Hijikata uses lightning to wipe out Clark and Inazou. He is going to do the same to Exorcist but Francesca protects her. Unfortunately she gets zapped and sent flying into the tower. Hijikata is disappointed with the extent of her power and leaves with his men since he feels something ominous. Franken remembers the time she picked him up and the good times they had. More like sightseeing with her arm… As Exorcist’s henchmen pick up Inazou and Clark in a body bag (they’re technically dead, right?), they note that Francesca is missing. Exorcist sees Chieko and Koyakko looking for Takuboku. This guy is missing too? Francesca has a dream. When she was young, she witnessed her parents step into an air blimp. It went up in flames. When she wakes up, she finds herself in a tram alongside Takuboku. He lets her eat all the candy (Francesca brand?) and doesn’t need to worry about the bill.

Episode 5
Francesca and Takuboku talk about their past. However they vaguely remember it and the same can be said for why they were resurrected. When they want to get off at the next stop, it seems a message appears that this tram isn’t stopping. They are shocked to see this tram has no driver. Takuboku notices Chieko and Koyakko and waves to them. The tram stops and let them out. However before they know it, they are back inside and the journey continues. Seems the duo have been on the tram for a week. The girls are worried this pervert may have done something to Francesca. Not just yet. Oh my. Clark and Inazou are drunk and think this tram is fun (because they see Takuboku tease chasing the girls). They hop on and are also trapped. Exorcist gets a report about the ghost tram that goes to hell. She knows who are onboard when the report describes the passengers. Feeling lonely? Francesca is going to try to stop this tram herself. Trying hard to remember all the vehicles she has ride throughout the ages (UFO too?! WTF?!), she employs her best. Unfortunately nothing happens because she has no brains! Hijikata and his Shinsengumi see the tram and are going to take on it. They become ‘shooting stars’. The tram stops at the next stop where Exorcist is. She tells them about this hell tram and she has a seal that could solve the problem. However seeing that it is her job to eradicate the undead, she becomes a conductor to tell the tram to continue its journey. Bye-bye! So who is the heartless one, literally?

Other Episodes

Unfortunately, the rest of the episodes never got subbed and so I thought my Japanese was decent enough to go watch the raws. Sadly after all these years, well, I don’t want to even think about it. Therefore the rest of the episodes I saw are based on what I see and understand from my very limited vocabulary.

Episode 6
The Shinsengumi wants to take over Sapporo and I don’t know why they decided to start by eating at some best ramen store in town. Turns out the ramen store is manned by Clark and Inazou. When they see Francesca as the poster girl, Hijikata’s wants a rematch so they are going to fight it out in an eating contest. Francesca has a stomach of a black hole since she is devouring bowls after bowls like nobody’s business. Hijikata is trailing so far behind and he is already ‘sick’ without even finishing his first one. Even if the Shinsengumi play tag, the most they can eat is 2 or 3 bowls. Even with the rest of the zombie guards coming to help, they cannot best Francesca! She’s really a monster! In the end, she wins and Hijikata is forced to admit defeat. Hungry Exorcist comes in to eat but finds they have run out of everything. Come back tomorrow? Don’t bother. She takes out her frustration by calling a flock of sheep to stampede the place! Later Hijikata heard there is some best curry ramen store around and decides to try it out. Guess what? Déjà vu. Isn’t that Clark, Inazou and Francesca? Better go for normal curry…

Episode 7
Takuboku seems to be serious so his girls have to go play alone. Nothing hentai lah. They bump into Francesca and co and hang out. Meanwhile the Shinsengumi bumps into Takuboku and are trying to find some clock tower to make it their base. Well, it’s just right before them. When Francesca and co arrive at the clock tower, they see the Shinsengumi on the roof proclaiming this their base. However Chieko tells them to get down. GET DOWN, NOW! She then lectures them and everybody else about the significance of this tower and even its history. However something strange starts to occur. Out from the clock tower, a portal that has zombie guards jumping out and attacking everyone including the Shinsengumi. Exorcist arrives to help and from what I understand, it seems they are from another parallel dimension. Of course, Takuboku is the one to blame for activating something earlier. They fear their leader on the other side is coming and it could be a more fearsome version of Francesca or Hijikata. But it turns out to be Franken. Francesca notes how cute they are and they are obedient enough to sit and play fetch with her arm. WTF.

Episode 8
Hijikata has the word ‘demon’ painted on his forehead and his men think he is back to his old self. Which means strict reprimanding for a dirty ship and the sloppy way they are dressing! They discuss on how to calm him down. Kai Shimada cooks for him but it ends up too sweet for his taste. Kazue Souma tries imitating but his signage imitation is so lame that you’d get mad. Tetsunosuke Ichimura tries to massage his back but slips and accidentally elbows it. Finally Noboru Nakajima draws a portrait of Hijikata but the result is something like Picasso. So how? Hijikata wants all of them to commit seppuku! He is going to hear their last words so they remember those old times when they fought together. Even in death, they’ll follow him. They are about to disembowel their stomach when Hijikata stops them. Looks like he wants them to live and continue fighting along his side. Tears of joy?

Episode 9
Francesca receives a letter from Hijikata. No, it is not a love letter! A challenge letter for heaven’s sakes. However can Francesca beat him at the state she is in now? Because Hijikata seems serious and might win this time. Clark suggests several underhanded tactics like disguising as a welcoming committee and when his guard is down, go in for the kill! Or Clark impersonating as a foreigner introducing his beautiful zombie daughter Francesca. And when he lets his get down, kill! Since Takuboku and his ladies are here, they go sightseeing. Inazou asks Takuboku’s advice about Francesca regaining her original strength. He thinks some sort of strong energy may bring it back. They are at some stone circles when a weird insignia appears. Did Francesca become strong? Well, let’s say she’s quirkier doing some strange dance. When it is time for the battle, the Shinsengumi apologizes it is off since Hijikata is sick from motion sickness. They also withdraw for now as they think Francesca is practising some secret technique. That dance… Ah well, you can’t complain, right? A victory is still a victory.

Episode 10
Inazou and Clark are trying to catch Francesca’s brain. Any luck? Nope. They caught an egg instead. You won’t know if you don’t try so Clark puts the egg into her brain and after all that painful screaming, Francesca turns into… Mother mode? Uh huh. She wants to take care of this egg and raise it like her own child! Ironically it’s in her head, not her tummy. She tries knitting but only entangles herself. Koyakko and Chieko blame Clark for poking them but he claims he didn’t. Even Inazou gets one and blames him! Suddenly they are surrounded by alien spirits?! Exorcist doesn’t detect them as undead. Francesca wants to protect her baby when another round of headache. The egg hatches and it turns out to be the spirit’s offspring. With Chieko translating, the spirits claim they are looking for their lost egg. Francesca still won’t hand it back till she hears how they thank her for taking care of it. In exchange, they reveal the location of an earth shattering power. One of Hijikata’s soldiers gets word of this and reports back. Exorcist receives a call from her team that they have caught Francesca’s brain.

Episode 11
The gang are at the zoo as Francesca is feeling worried so the girls assure her if they can’t find that power, they’ll go back to search her brain. However Inazou cautions them because Takuboku told him if that happens, this Francesca may disappear and transform into something different. They notice Franken missing as well as Takuboku. Exorcist is at the shrine believed to be where that power is. She is trying to get the priest to tell her but he remains suspicious and will not. She threatens with her chain gun when the Shinsengumi is seen entering the grounds (the miko priestess must be smitten with their good looks although they are dead). Hijikata is going to take this power at the mini shrine when Exorcist and Takuboku show up to stop them. With the Shinsengumi keeping them at bay, Hijikata meets a grizzly bear who wants him to choose between a gold, silver or normal sword. Does this sound familiar? But Hijikata grabs it by the throat and wants real power instead. The bear is impressed and absorbs into him to give him the power. The priest is troubled that he absorbed an evil power. Hijikata turns into… A guy in a bear suit?! Meanwhile Francesca’s side come across a white bear who tells her to choose between a gold, silver or ordinary guy. She chooses the ordinary one (at the same time finding Franken) and since it is the right answer, she wins a voucher of that power. She tests it out. Do you feel the power coming?

Episode 12
Actually, it feels nothing. Why not put it to the test. Air fireball… Nothing happens. Since the nearby shrine is in chaos, they rush over. Pedo bear Hijikata is wreaking havoc all around. Francesca tries to stop him but was easily tossed away. I guess it’s certain. She had no real power. Just when Clark seemingly is going to attack Hijikata, it is just to get his pellets to go with his rice. We should have come to expect this guy is no good in saving the world. Hijikata is moving towards the town. He must be stopped. Even the Shinsengumi pleads for her help. Exorcist reveals she has captured her brain but there is the risk she will lose her current personality. Francesca is willing to do it. With her team throwing the brain down to her, it returns to her head as she transform into something ferocious. More powerful. Faster. Scarier. They are on equal footing but in the end, it is Francesca who emerges victorious and reverting Hijikata to his original state. However the problem now is that Francesca is exuding with evil aura. Before anything bad can happen, a voice from the sky screams that this cannot go on anymore and thus like déjà vu, lightning strikes Francesca, her brain pops out and she is back to that ditzy zombie we all know and love. Welcome back?

Episode 13
Something is wrong with Francesca. Spacing out and not being a glutton. Not her usual self. She follows the sound of a flute but is surrounded by the Shinsengumi guards. A handsome samurai, Yoshitsune Minamoto comes to her rescue. He knows her but unfortunately she doesn’t remember him. Meanwhile Takuboku is going around sealing rifts in the dimension when Koyakko thought she saw Francesca. With Clark and Inazou looking for her, Takuboku thinks he knows who this Yoshitsune guy is as Chieko explains his brief history of him getting betrayed by his lord. Francesca is taken back to Yoshitsune’s place as he tries to refresh her memories by telling how they met. He was trudging through the snow and left to die till Francesca descended and healed him. Too bad Francesca fell asleep hearing the story! He is going to start again but she right away falls asleep! Oh brother. He puts her to bed and as he plays his flute, short flashback scenes of how they were together. Francesca watched over him till he is healed and when they parted, he gave her a ring which she is still wearing today. He promises to return the favour one day. The Shinsengumi guards surround outside as Yoshitsune fights them but there is a limit to how many he can slay. That is when Francesca wakes up and protects him. She now remembers. He transfers his powers to her and in a flash she destroys all the soldiers. However with his job done, it’s time to part again. Something about his conquest of Mongolia. They’ll meet again as long as she has the ring. When the rest reunite with her, they are glad she is back to her goofy self. Meanwhile Exorcist is examining the shrine and felt something strange about the lightning that struck Francesca. It’s not just a coincidence. Takuboku also have a feeling that something sinister is coming.

Episode 14
Francesca and co are in some tower for sightseeing. There is a statue of Hijikata and they don’t hesitate to take pictures with it. Meanwhile the Shinsengumi are discussing about that incident where Hijikata lost to Francesca at the shrine. Some of them reveal that they had a dream about Francesca. She descended and told them Hijikata will lose. It seems that guy too has some sort of nightmare and reeling from the defeat. He feels the need to become stronger. Meanwhile Shinsengumi soldiers are seen pushing and hitting the tower base. Because this causes Francesca’s ice cream to drop, she becomes the raging zombie and fights them! Everyone helps out in cutting them down and even Exorcist. However they notice that they aren’t your usual Shinsengumi guards. They finally destroy all of them but it seems Takuboku got injured while protecting Koyakko. He shortly collapses.

Episode 15
While the soldiers are training, one of them slips. This causes him to remember his past and family. He escapes and there are orders to bring him back. Meanwhile Takuboku is in Exorcist’s lab inside a chamber unit being healed. As Francesca, Inazou and Clark take a walk, they see the soldiers cornering some kid. After dispatching them, there are surprised to see that rouge soldier, Heikichi Nara behind that hood. He explains to them about his predicament and something about his gambling habits that always bring trouble to his family. But when he was drafted into the army, he missed his family and that they’re still waiting for his return. Francesca volunteers to help him return home. But the place now is a melon farm. Then those soldiers (disguised as melon heads?) start ambushing them. As they fight, Heikichi is close to giving up as his home is no more. But Francesca tells him she doesn’t have memories of her family. This gives him motivation not to give up. All the soldiers are disposed when Heikichi smells something familiar. It’s the cooking of his wife. He follows the smell his little home where his family is still waiting. He tossed away the mask and reunites with them. Wow. He looks with a different stature without that puny mask. That is disposable in the first place? He is grateful for Francesca’s words and now that they have reunited, they can move on to the next world. Francesca also receives some of her memories back. She remembers her mom giving her a dog doll as a birthday present. More good news as Takuboku wakes up as he thanks Exorcist. But the little girl won’t admit it and says she is doing it since he has some use to her. Nevertheless he gives her a big hug and will do his best for her.

Episode 16
I’m not sure about this captain sailing his ship to protect the waters from some sea monster called Toshi. But how can he do it with a ship that looks more like a haunted house and with no weapons?! Don’t worry. Shinsengumi is here to save the day. And here Toshi comes… Meanwhile Francesca and co paddle on their swan boat to some island to meet deer or something. Francesca mistakes Toshi as a deer and gets eaten up. The rest follows. Inside its stomach, they find the Shinsengumi there too. Although they claim they have got Toshi under their command, but it looks more like they were eaten up as well. And of course, the inevitable battle between Hijikata and Francesca. Francesca is still strong thanks to the ring. Suddenly Hijikata stops. His stomach growls. So does his men. Haven’t eaten anything for a week, eh? Thank Francesca for the food. They look around and notice all the junk and structures Toshi has eaten. Must be that hungry but why eat them too? Is it because they are considered garbage too? Well, they’re the undead… With acid juice flowing in, there is only a way to get out… A week later, the captain is happy that Toshi is not in sight. But what are they going to do with our stinky guys? Guess which way they came out from the sea monster? Meanwhile Exorcist suddenly finds a love letter from Takuboku in her drawer! Gasp!

Episode 17
Exorcist is in love? I don’t know but she sounds weird trying to be a poet. Her subordinates are stumped seeing her acting cute. Heck, she’s messing around with the computer till it pops up some secret X-Files. There is a password so she simply keys in ‘hatsukoi’ (first love) as a joke and it works!!! The folder contains lots of old photos. There is a picture of Yoshitsune in battle wearing that ring. Oddly, every other photo has Francesca in the background. Meanwhile Francesca and co head to the hotspring. Even the undead needs to relax and unwind. We see Koyakko feeling inferior in her chest compared to the rest while Clark just melts! Do statues melt this easily in hot water? Suddenly Francesca is transported to her younger days in some Victorian hometown. Her mother is unconscious and there is this Dark Francesca beckoning her to follow. She is told to meet Rikuni. Similarly, the Shinsengumi are visiting the hotspring. Hijikata is cute when drunk when he also disappears into that Victorian hometown. He sees Francesca who tells him she will be waiting at Rikuni. Francesca wakes up and tells the rest about this. She wants to go to Rikuni (some heart shaped island) and believes she will find something she lost there. Meanwhile Exorcist takes a closer look at the love letter and realizes it is not one! Frustrated? It is actually just a map of that Rikuni place and a message for her to meet him there.

Episode 18
Exorcist meets up with Francesca and co right before the heart shaped island. A castle materializes on it and as they enter, this Victorian town seems very familiar. Indeed it is. They stop to ask for directions but not even Chieko can decipher the language. But Clark could! Really? Seems like it until he said something wrong and has the guards arresting them. Now what? Run! Even when cornered, Clark tries to defect and blames it on them! Saitei! Thankfully the guards don’t buy it. The king’s servant comes by and recognizes Francesca. Suddenly all his subjects bow before her. They are brought to the castle and treated with first class hospitality and amenities. The servant has Francesca follow him. She passes by her room. In a big room, there is Francesca’s family portrait. The Shinsengumi is also here as they launch an attack on the island and invade the land. But everything is crumbling and they have to leave. Through Chieko’s translation via a dictionary, the servant tells Francesca to gather the 7 pieces and only then her lost self and true form will return. Once everyone evacuates, Rikuni disappears.

Episode 19
Takuboku is seen allying himself with the Shinsengumi because their goals are the same. Exorcist explains the spots where it may contain the 7 fragments. She also let the rest know she saw Takuboku among the Shinsengumi at Rikuni. Everyone splits up to search for the fragments. Francesca is surprised to see a chibi version of herself. She tries to catch it but Hijikata attacks her. He is here to stop her from retrieving her true form as she is the devil who will bring ruin to Hokkaido. Meanwhile Exorcist also finds a chibi Francesca. But with Takuboku also here, I suppose she is still reeling from that embarrassment and shoots him. Elsewhere, Chieko and Koyakko find a chibi Francesca respectively but also have to deal with Tetsunosuke and Noboru respectively. Suddenly they remember about their past, their time with Takuboku. In the end he left them. It brings great tears but they realize their true feelings and won’t give up on him. After easily defeating the Shinsengumi, the chibi Francesca agree to go with them and turn into mini hearts. Hijikata will not give up and powers up.

Episode 20
He’s got a “Super Demon” on his forehead and his head butting Francesca! WTF?! Elsewhere, Inazou faces off with Shimada but chibi Francesca invites them to drink at nearby stall selling them. What a better way to settle things via drinking? Eventually they got drunk. Who is going to pay for it? Put it on Exorcist’s tab! Chibi Francesca is drunk and turns into a mini heart. The guys want the other to have it and since they’re so ‘kind’ it led them to get mad but ultimately passed out. I don’t know what Clark is lecturing Souma about but I don’t think he wants to listen. Several girls surround Souma (too bad for you Clark) because he is a handsome dude. Somehow they have a mini Francesca and give it to him. Suddenly something evil in Clark awakens. Looks like he got his memories back and remembers his goal. Takuboku’s wound is still there. He is about to get owned. Exorcist is still reeling from that misunderstanding and fires at him. But she missed him and drew a heart shape around. Still can’t forget him? She is giving this excuse to let him live for now as she takes chibi Francesca. Everyone returns to Francesca who is still fighting Hijikata. They give the heart fragments to her. Even Franken got one (after some silly face off with a Shinsengumi soldier in some food preparation thingy). When Hijikata gets word that Souma is badly injured, he calls off the match. To be settled next time… Again. The fragments are combined and Francesca absorbs. Them. Hmm… Feels warm and good. Clark impersonating as his goofy self notes it won’t take long now…

Episode 21
The Shinsengumi drink to a pledge. Souma is well enough to join them. Meanwhile everyone celebrates Francesca’s wholesome. However when her heart starts to throb, she begins acting selfish and hogs all the food. Franken’s bark returns her to normal. A portal is detected so Clark has Inazou and Francesca come with him to investigate. As Takuboku’s signal is also detected, Chieko and Koyakko go to find him but he is wounded. At the portal, the Shinsengumi is also there and they believe this is Francesca’s doing. As they fight, Francesca’s dark side comes out again and is powerful enough to fight off Hijikata. But the rest of the other Shinsengumi members remember that dream of meeting her and believe it is true. They might be forgetting something. Clark wants Francesca to unleash all her hatred. But when she seizes the Shinsengumi members and they call her a monster, she realizes this is not the true self she wants to become. Hijikata will not fall for this trickery and attacks. Franken defends Francesca and gets stabbed. Once he disappears from Francesca’s arms, she is filled with sadness and rage, she powers up into her dark form and even more sinister when she absorbs her brain. Clark turns Inazou evil under his command.

Episode 22
Dark Francesca’s hair becomes evil wings. She fights Hijikata and causes his sword to break. Disappointed, she summons Shinsengumi soldiers from another dimension to fight. Thankfully a herd of sheep stampede through. Is this Exorcist’s skill? This also turns Clark and Inazou back to normal. Takuboku returns but his explanation is a little too late. They weren’t supposed to gather the fragments as they represent Francesca’s negative emotions like jealousy and hatred. Shimada and Noboru remember their dream. Francesca foretold them about her dark side and wanted them to stop her when the time comes. Dark Francesca wants to destroy everything and attacks but the Shinsengumi uses their body to protect Hijikata. They’re glad they get to protect him for real. Yeah, now he gets to have the glory of finishing her off. Now they’re gone. He’s sad. He’s mad. He powers up and assembles their swords into one big badass version. He is no longer a super demon but an explosive demon! At least he could fight on par with her. Takuboku further reveals that some song book might be the key to stop her. His memories returned when he was at Rikuni. He remembered meeting Francesca. She saved him after he got beaten up by some guy. She called him her saviour because his song dispelled the darkness in her. However he is too weak to use its power. Koyakko and Chieko want to lend their power. They are tired of chasing him and want to always be together. They summon some beam (or was it some key) to strike Dark Francesca before Hijikata strikes the finishing blow. Exorcist is sad to see Takuboku and the girls disappearing. Sorry for what she said now? Heh. Even girls like her can cry. But save it for later because that attempt didn’t have any effect on Dark Francesca as she revives. Running out of options…

Episode 23
Flashback reveals the king of Rikuni was happy when Francesca was born into this world. However each time she is happy, a bright light emits and blows up the surroundings. Nobody died but I am sure afro wasn’t the fashion hairstyle they would love to have. This goes on for so long that the king decided the only way is to seal this power. Because the entire country is black as a coal and the only place left is this tiny heart shaped island that they are on. So they got a mage (Exorcist?) to do the sealing. Francesca’s heart fragments that contain her happy feelings were scattered. As she grows up, she acts more like a delinquent, taking out her frustrations on the guards. She must be really scary. But Francesca isn’t that all bad as she feels guilty and wonders if she’s a bad girl. But the servant disagrees she is so since she helps protect the country and that she is who she is. So for a long time, she helps protect the country and seals the portal cracks. Inazou when he was alive, resurrected Francesca in some school lab and Clark views her as someone important to save Hokkaido. Back in present, Hijikata saves Exorcist from being minced meat. She should have got the hint that all the bullets she pumped into Dark Francesca had no effect. Then they notice that Dark Francesca seems to be getting her powers from the other dimension and she might be controlled by something from the other side. And then something points to what Clark said but he too isn’t sure (can’t quite understand this part). The heart fragment returns to possess Dark Francesca and doesn’t believe that she is a bad girl.

Episode 24
Suddenly parts of Francesca like as though some sort of mecha gatai, form Francesca! Well, I suppose since she is a zombie so the parts can combine. Holy cow! Twin Francescas. Everyone knows this Francesca is the one they know since her trademark goofiness is there. Dark Francesca still considers herself as the true one but Francesca won’t allow her to do as she pleases. Francesca fights back and gives Dark Francesca a run for her money but the latter also returns fire. Hijikata joins in the fight to help Francesca. He believes in Francesca as the real one because from their fights. When Dark Francesca stabs him, Hijikata restrains her and sacrifices himself so that Francesca could blow her back to the other dimension. Before Dark Francesca revives, Francesca is going to seal the portal. Do you have to sacrifice yourself like that? I mean, Exorcist must have died a few times seeing characters being killed off (yeah, I kinda noticed her role is to scream their names too when they ‘die’) and she certainly doesn’t want Francesca to go. Not after she racked up all those food tabs. But Francesca has got to do what she has got to do. Taking off her eye-patch, she unleashes some power to seal the portal. Days later, Exorcist reports no future cracks were spotted ever since but her henchmen pick up signals of undead. She rushes over to stop Hijikata and his Shinsengumi men from trying to start another revolution to create Ezo. Then there is also Chieko and Koyakko reprimanding Takuboku while perverted Clark wants to join in. Exorcist remembers after Francesca seals the portal, the dead characters were returned (ironically, they were dead to begin with). They sit around eating corn and discuss the mysterious person who was controlling Francesca. Hijikata believes Francesca is still alive somewhere because whenever Hokkaido is in danger, she will be sure to return and protect it. Then Franken picks up a scent. Could it be Francesca? The search is on.

More Alive Being An Undead
Hey… It wasn’t that bad! Heck, I managed to get through half of the episodes at least understanding what they say! So it isn’t all that bad! Hooray! What an accomplishment! Let me pat myself in the back… But still sadly and unfortunately, my general lack of Japanese vocabulary is still the main down factor that this series is less enjoyable especially the important revelation parts and towards the end of the series. I couldn’t understand precisely what was going on and had to guess based on what I see and stringing in a few Japanese vocabulary I could hear. It was frustrating to strain my ears so many times but yet couldn’t comprehend it all in the end and had to give up. Yeah, really sad. Therefore my blog summary of the episodes may not be accurate and might be even off the mark.

Even sadder and more unfortunate that this decently fun show is ignored by fansub groups just because it is underrated and not main stream and therefore you will never be able to find subs for it anytime soon (at least not by the time I finished watching this series). Even if you’re lucky that this show is going to be licensed and subbed by ‘legal’ companies, that might be in the distant future and even so, don’t put your hopes up for it because like I said, this is an underrated show despite the fun. I mean, if a show is assumed not going to be popular, why bother adding to the cost for a show that the majority doesn’t care about? It is such a sad thing that this series will be passed up and not given a ‘real’ chance, never ever to be known by the decent majority.

Some of the episodes feel random like as though they are pulling a South Park ending. Because sometimes I feel that what happens at the end of the episode doesn’t have any consequences in the next. It is like as though they pressed the reset button and let the episode start anew. Oh heck, they’re zombies. They can’t really die, can’t they? But aside these filler-like episodes, they are nevertheless fun to watch despite me not understanding half of what they’re saying. Mainly because Francesca is both cute and goofy at the same time so it is hard to hate her and even if she is annoying, she is annoyingly cute. Yeah. Leave it to animes to turn zombies from horrifying undead who want to eat your brains into cute loving creatures that protect the land!

I suppose the reason why they put Francesca as such a glutton and eats everything she could get her hands on is probably to promote the food and special delicacies in Hokkaido. You can see Francesca and sometimes with Inazou and Clark bumming around wasting time talking about the delicious food and has nothing to do with the direction of the plot whatsoever. Well, it’s a good way to promote Hokkaido because I am sure a part of tourism to promote a place is to talk about the culture and you can’t have that without food, right? Right. Unfortunately I couldn’t understand further because you-know-why.

The characters are okay and each of them are lovable including the Shinsengumi guys who aren’t really the antagonists. They may always be on collision course with Francesca’s side but when you have good looking (zombie) guys, they can’t be entirely that bad, right? Because when you have a group like them with their own quirkiness like Hijikata’s motion sickness and all, how can you call those jokers the main villains of the series? Besides, I thought it was going to be a running joke that their ship before they set sail will always be sunk by something that comes flying their way. Fortunately this is only spammed in the first few episodes and it would be dead boring (mind the pun) if they continue to play this gag for the rest of the series. Of course with the teasing of that mysterious villain (who doesn’t even have the tendency to show his damn face since the scene is conveniently shrouded in darkness), it hints there will be a more sinister force and Hokkaido will be in greater threat. But that is another story and another season provided if Hokkaido gets popular enough to give thanks and make another season ;p.

So for our main titular character, what can I say about Francesca? She’s cute, she’s goofy, she is happy-go-lucky, she loves everything she eats and more importantly, she is very cheerful for an undead girl. And you thought dead people don’t have emotions, eh? We love this Francesca, don’t we? Francesca is literally in a world of her own and isn’t concerned about the dangers around her till she gets serious enough to think about her lost memories and past. Though, I am still curious about Yoshitsune as I believe there should be more to them than just the ring he gave to her. As for Exorcist, I feel her role is a lot redundant because it is not like she could do anything about the undead. No matter how many bullets she fire from her seemingly heavy chain gun, she only hits those lowly Shinsengumi soldiers. She is someone who hangs out with our undead casts (ironically she is the only living being among them) and then being casted as some love stricken loli, sorting out her feelings whether she is in love with that perverted glasses. An undead stealing her heart? You have got to be a zombie lover to even go that far.

Clark feels like the biggest joker of the pack because you can see from his character that not only he is for comedic purpose but perhaps the biggest coward of them all. You can say he is selfish because when his life is at stake, he tries to get himself out of it even if that means pushing it to his comrades. I know, this is for comic relief but… And Inazou seems to be the one whose role is also to rebuke Clark since he also makes a lot of jokes and uncalled comments. I can’t say much for the rest of the characters since like I’ve said before, my limited vocabulary does not allow me to comprehend the things they say. So for like Takuboku, he may be like some flirting scholar and from my observations he seems to be knowledgeable about what is going on and tries to take action by himself. I don’t understand the real connection of Koyakko and Chieko with him, whether there was some love triangle going on or not. But from what I can see is that Koyakko is a model while Chieko a teacher whose main role seems to be explaining and translating to viewers stuff.

Drawing and art makes the characters look cute. You won’t freak out with Francesca’s cutie looks despite an obvious heart shaped hole right in the middle of her chest. Heck, with everyone looking so, you don’t even think they are zombies. I mean, our perceptions of zombies are ugly rotting flesh of dead people, right? And here, their skin seems to be in perfect condition and the only thing that differentiates them from being normal alive human beings are the stitching scars that you see on some of their limbs. But even so, you are more inclined to think that this might be some fashion statement of having stitch-like tattoo on your face, neck, hands, etc. I have a feeling that Exorcist is made out of CGI although she actually isn’t. Because her design itself is funny. An oversized loli in her diapers wearing a skull on her head. She almost reminds me of Old Master Q’s Big Potato. Really. Also, I find it odd that Exorcist’s subordinates look like robbers. I mean, they wear balaclava/ski mask over their head… What the heck is this kind of getup?!

The ending theme is the most appealing thing to me in this segment. Sasayaki Wa Crescendo by Yui Makino (voice of Francesca) is a very cute and catchy piece. It is like as though a consoling factor after the little frustration of watching almost an entire series without subs. Not to say that I understand totally the lyrics but at least I get to hum along with this cute piece. Even the short opening jingle is cute and infectious.

Overall, this is a fun show with lots of cute funny moments and some action bits (although I find the action part to be just mediocre – definitely not the series’ strength). Generally you will be kept entertained even with questions like how the undead casts are resurrected in the first place and for what purpose or the ending that leaves us viewers wondering if Francesca is still alive. Technically she isn’t but she is because she’s dead so she can’t die therefore she is alive but not in that alive sense but dead alive and also she’s the main character so you can’t kill her off like that and I would classify as missing. Argh! So confusing! Did you get all that? Of course the biggest disappointment is nobody subbed it and it takes out a lot of fun and a turn off for those who want to watch this but can’t. Would it have been great had somebody subbed them? Maybe. Maybe not. But fate at this point has it so. So, when people ask you what is Hokkaido famous for, in addition to quoting fine sakes, zoos, seafood, local cuisine, lakes, national parks, the abundant nature, now you can add cute zombies to the list. That’s right. Zombie girl and friends will protect the region from other dangers and even from other zombies.

Alright! More Chaika! Hooray! Chaika returns! And with that I welcome the very much anticipated second season, Hitsugi No Chaika: Avenging Battle. It was a surprise that I took quite a liking for the first season therefore I couldn’t be happier to continue the fantasy action series and perhaps a closure to it. So without ado and dragging on, let’s see if our Chaika can continue to gather the remaining parts of Gaz and give father a decent funeral since there are other parties with similar interests and on their tail. I’m still hoping to see which hero is the one having his balls! HAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Or maybe as usual, there is something more sinister lurking beneath it all. Watch this, you must!

Episode 1
Five years ago at the height of the war when Emperor Gaz was still alive, he ordered Viktor Izhmash, the assistant director of the Institute of Magic to produce tools necessary to achieve his goals in total secrecy. Gaz knew he has not much longer to live. Soon the heroes killed Gaz and brought an end to the war. But even after his death, his influence still remains vast. The council is still in discussion that he may be the one behind the floating fortress incident. Meanwhile Chaika faces off with Lady Claudia who is an ex-soldier and one of the heroes, for a part of the Emperor. She is having a tough time going against her. You know what’s funny? I thought Chaika’s incantation lines were longer… Tooru and Akari dispatched Claudia’s underlings (but not without a fight) and ultimate Chaika loses. But since this is not a fight to the death, Claudia calls it a draw since both sides have got a win and loss. Try again tomorrow? Back in her estate, Claudia now runs a big grapevine and winery. All the ex-soldiers who find themselves unemployed during the war are employed by her. Since she is busy, Claudia suggests to limit tomorrow’s battle. If either one of them can land a victory on her during that time limit, they win. Chaika asks about her father’s last moments since Claudia was one of the heroes. Unfortunately she was tending to her wounded comrades and the Emperor was beheaded by their captain who was also believed to have beheaded his daughter. Well, with so many Chaikas claiming they are the real one… Claudia advises Chaika about her good offence but lacking defence. And this… Her incantations were too long! See! What did I tell you?!

That night, Tooru is thinking of a way to best Claudia but Akari clearly seems to be more interested in sleeping with him with an excuse to be close to protect him. Fredrica suggests victory will be easy if they just make a contract with her and the dragoon will just blast everything away. But Chaika intends to keep the promise for a fair fight. Chaika practises to reduce her incantation lines. She explains about everything has a meaning and that magic depends on many factors like temperature, terrain, humidity, etc. That’s why the right words are important. Heck, she even got a little notebook for all the words! Ironically even referring to them doesn’t help. Let’s say pulling an all-nighter didn’t help. Meanwhile Leo reports to Konrad about what happened to Gillette during that incident and the surprising fact that Vivi turned into Chaika. They researched her background to see if she is related to Gaz but her past remains obscure. Seeing that Chaikas and the gathering of Gaz’s parts remains a threat, Nikolai is made as the team’s new captain and to carry on their mission. Vivi is in the midst of depression when Guy appears before her. He says she only partially transformed into Chaika because she was interrupted. Although Vivi asserts she is not the daughter of that taboo emperor, Guy says being a halfie is enough for her to carry out her role to gather all of the parts. She’ll find out why when she completes it. Next morning before Chaika and the siblings head into battle, Tooru mentions that if they lose, they’ll just steal the parts since they know where she stores it. Chaika appreciates the sentiment but wants to fight as a wizard. The battle begins and they go on the offense but Chaika may be about to get owned.

Episode 2
Thanks to Tooru’s swiftness, Chaika is saved in time. But Claudia continues to dominate the land and there are traps all over. Our heroes can do nothing but hide. Even that, Claudia blasts her way to smoke them out. Meanwhile, Bohdan defeats a hero and gets a part. Although her objective to gather them for revenge remains her top priority, she still can’t get Tooru out of her head. Guy appears before them to tell the location of the next hero. However he also mentions about an island off the coast which might interest them. Back to Chaika, Tooru becomes the bait and receives some painful trap spell as Chaika goes around trying to circumvent Claudia. If she would stop worrying, she would have got the job done faster. But it is not Chaika that sealed Claudia’s loss. Fredrica pops up before Claudia’s feet and got distracted about this cat. That was enough time for Chaika for her long ass chanting to blow her away before she could react. Claudia admits defeat and points that it was Chaika’s wish to protect Tooru that gave her the strength to defeat her. This makes Chaika blush. Elsewhere, Karen gives Vivi an observation diary from Gillette regarding his observations on Chaika. In this library too are materials seized from Gaz’s castle and she found a report from the squad that killed Gaz. It is believed to contain his fortune.

Chaika is having a nice grape feast. When Tooru mentions Claudia is different from other heroes they met, she mentions many of them lost their way after the war. She didn’t want to go through that and found a new purpose. Although she was given a part as proof as a hero, it didn’t belong to her. She heard rumours Gaz’s daughter(s) was going around gathering parts and if she met one and liked her, she’ll give it to her. She is glad that Chaika is the one. But when she mentions about Gaz’s fortune, Chaika genuinely doesn’t know. Claudia recalls that a wizard from the castle gave a map containing whereabouts of Gaz’s fortune on a secret island in exchange for his life. However the captain killed him shortly. Allied forces searched for it and never found anything. They even raided his library but nothing. The search was then called off. As goodwill and prevent them for running around on wild goose chases, Claudia gives them the names and probable location of the other heroes. While stopping on their journey, Chaika wakes up from a bad dream of being beheaded. She questions herself if she is real or fake because if that dream was real, she would be dead. Tooru calms her down and assures they will stay loyal to their employer. When they reach the cabin of another hero, Glen Donkervoort, he tells them the red Chaika already took his part. Realizing the implication of this and not wanting Bohdan to get ahead of them, they make haste. The only remaining heroes are Viscount Alan Tramontana, Lord Stephan Hartgen and Clay Morgan. But Chaika now is more interested about her father’s island and wants to learn more of who she is.

Episode 3
Tooru and Chaika… Both sleeping at the wheel?! Who is driving?! Thankfully no accident. They reach the sea and they are awed by it since they haven’t seen one this up close before. Another funny incident: Akari helps Chaika to splash water on Tooru because she wants to see her brother all wet! On to serious business, they see a line of people outside Clay’s mansion. Seems entertainers who can entertain him are paid well. So they infiltrate as street performers. Care to be more specific? This is what happens when you let Akari speak. She claims Tooru can sit naked in a tub of boiling water impersonating a cockatrice while eating pasta through his nose! Wow! This I got to see! Although it’s a blatant lie, Akari really wants him to strip and do that because she really wants to see! She’s got him at knifepoint! Heck, even Chaika wants to see! Because she is disguised as a ‘ghost’ (to hide her Gundo), Clay finds them as funny comedians. However Tooru doesn’t want his money and wants Gaz’s part. This makes him suspicious but when Chaika shows herself, he starts becoming traumatized. He was sure he saw her head rolled on the floor. Believing she is a ghost to come haunt him, he flees for his life. The siblings go after him and it seems he must have run all over town because it’s like almost everyone had spotted him passing through. While they’re at that, Chaika tries to find somebody to bring her to the island but nobody is willing to because all ships that went to that area sank. When Tooru finds Clay, they fight. Despite Clay being a chubby guy, he still can move and swing that metal spear like a pro. He proclaims how scary it was fighting Gaz. Despite being impaled and cut up, that guy was smiling like as though he was looking down on them. He tried to forget this trauma by being entertained but now they brought this back up. Once he is subdued, he agrees to let them have it as long as they never come back.

Tooru picks up the parts hidden below the well. Hmm… His pair of ears… I don’t know, it just feels so unexciting… Guy then appears before them to tell them an island off the coast. Tooru remains suspicious but Guy lets him wonder if he was that same guy (pun intended) they talked to. Meanwhile Shin who works under Hartgen reports the white Chaika will be coming here. Hmm… He got twin daughters, Irina and Arina. Twin Chaikas? And this shocking-but-not-so-shocking revelation: Gillette is alive and working under him! Once Tooru learns Chaika is soliciting help to get to the island, he lectures her about trying to go off alone by herself. Especially if their information on Gaz’s fortune is so vague. Chaika thinks he doesn’t understand her feelings and threatens she will do that herself. Tooru takes that as being fired and leaves. Oh dear. Now only Fredrica remains. Chaika makes a plea to fly her there. As the siblings bum around, leave it to Akari to talk to him with her twisted ways to respect Chaika’s wish as theirs since she is their employer. Like an island where he keeps all his lewd things and about inept Chaika being raped by others or her head saying farewell to her body after being decapitated by red Chaika. Tooru gets the point and will go back and talk to Chaika. However he sees her leaving on Fredrica. He tries to get a boat to follow her but nobody is willing. Noticing a cargo ship belonging to Clay, he threatens that guy for it or he will scatter Gaz’s remains around his mansion. Take it! Bohdan and co see them and sneak onboard. When the ship is in the mist, both sides confront each other. But their ship is sunk by the giant Kraken. Chaika uses her Gundo to locate the island’s whereabouts. Once she manages to do so, several dragoons attack Fredrica and cut her wings. Free fall!

Episode 4
Chaika and Fredrica are fine but separated. Same case for Tooru and Bohdan’s side. However Chaika and Bohdan got arrested by demi-human soldiers and are being brought to an underground lab where they are being imprisoned. Tooru sneaks into the facility while Akari coincidentally bump into Fredrica as they slay several Fayla creatures. Izhmash ponders the meaning of the experiments ever since Gaz’s death. But there is an unconscious girl in a chamber he believes only Gaz knows how to activate. When Cyril reports the capture of the intruders but called off the search due to poor vision and footing that would endanger his men, he gets chided for not carrying out his orders. Seems Izhmash despises demi-humans and even thinks of using them as experiments to get rid of them. Chaika is treated well by Ursula but the latter doesn’t know much or can’t say. Tooru manages to free Chaika as she apologizes for her selfishness. As they run and hide from the guards, it brings them to an underground cave. There are lots of dead Fayla creatures. They hear a voice telling them they are all duplicates. This Kraken reveals this facility is used to research production of mass Fayla via forging magic. Failures are tossed here. He was captured and experimented on to mass produced Krakens. He knows Chaika because there was one here before. It hints to Layla. As Kraken’s life is ending, he will answer all Chaika wants. She doesn’t hesitate to ask who she is. One to set destiny in motion, carries a coffin around, body as a tool for that purpose, key to unlock destiny. Well, we already know all that. Ursula and Cyril see Chaika’s escaped cage and know they’ll be punished if Izhmash finds out about this. Meanwhile Nikolai and his team talk to some drunken old guy about seeing floating castles. That was when he was just a boy. 80 or 90 years ago? But floating fortresses haven’t been invented then. They wonder what Gaz was trying to leave behind.

Kraken continues his explanation how Fayla and magic co-existed. But when humans appeared and desired magic, they used manmade implements of magic to control them. Mankind’s development in magic developed rapidly under the wizard named Gaz. Therefore Chaikas are tools to fulfil his ambitions. Their life and death, joy and sorrow are part of the gears that comprise them and cannot be denied. When destiny is set in motion, humans, Fayla and all other living things will be hurled into chaos and destruction. Chaikas hold the key to that future. Cyril and his men attack Tooru. But since there are too many of them, it is best to give up. When Cyril learns she is Chaika and reports to Izhmash, he is astound that there are 2 Chaikas here and wants them brought before him. He introduces himself and is surprised that the girl in the chamber awakens and reacts to them. He notes she was still in development when the previous Chaika was here. Bohdan is not amused for this treatment. I mean, she’s the Emperor’s daughter, right? Izhmash laughs and lets them in on a secret. Gaz had no daughter! After the war, there were many orphaned children. Girls of similar age were secretly gathered and magic was used to alter their memories. All girls receive identical memories of being Gaz’s daughter. When they woke up, they took up coffins and set out to look for his remains. Proof of that is the scar on their neck. Words of Layla and Kraken begin to echo in Chaika’s head. She falls into shock that her memories are fake. Izhmash is going to remove their brains and analyze them. After all, other Chaikas will gather the remaining parts and bring them here.

Episode 5
Izhmash is going to punish Ursula and Cyril for letting this happen. The Chaikas are taken to the dissection room but they aren’t going to sit still and be cut up. They fight back against those weak demi-humans and free themselves. Although Bohdan doesn’t quite like it, she temporarily cooperates with Chaika to get out. Because the girl in the chamber, Niva Lada looks pitiful, Chaika frees her and takes her along. Akari and Fredrica burst into the underground lab. They see David and Selma in the cell but aren’t interested in freeing them. Since they find the weapon of Chaika and others, maybe David’s idea of repaying the favour twice in the future sounds handy so they drop their weapons to let them escape themselves. Next, Akari and Fredrica see Ursula and Cyril tied up. They offer to be their guide. The Chaikas are surrounded by demi-humans. Thanks to Tooru coming into the picture, they get to escape. Once Izhmash realizes Niva is gone, he makes it top priority to find her at all cost. The Chaikas don’t matter anymore. Release all Fayla and demi-humans and kill all those who interfere. He will be heading to the observation tower to control all the Fayla himself. After all, after extracting elements from all Fayla and completing Niva is what Gaz entrusted him with. All the separated parties reunite in the forest as they hack and slash wave after wave of Fayla. I can’t believe Akari can even quip how Tooru has tainted another young girl’s purity after seeing Niva for the first time. Better take your baseless frustrations by killing more Fayla. On higher ground, Cyril explains the tower that controls everything on the island since all experimented subjects have some magic receptacle in their brain. Cyril and Ursula are the last of their demi-human kind on this island and were brought her to contribute cells for mass produced models.

Chaika wants to shoot down the tower with her Gundo. But her first shot didn’t have any effect. Better hurry because the rest may not be able to keep up with the increasing number of Fayla. Niva then switches to some functional mode and transforms into one badass Gundo accessory for Chaika. This is Niva’s true form. With Chaika’s permission, she fires a powerful blast that brings down the tower. Immediately all the Fayla become motionless. Dying Izhmash realizes Chaika was the key in activating Niva and them coming to this island was all part of Gaz’s plan. Cyril and Ursula plan to stay on this island seeing Fayla is no longer a threat. David wants to settle a score with Tooru but the latter has him think about Guy sending them here. Could it be that it is someone’s plan to have them kill each other? I guess that is enough fighting for today. Both side part ways. Meanwhile the council learns that Hartgen is holding a martial arts tournament. The prize is a part of Gaz and the participants are coerced to kill each other. They fear the strongest fighters will assemble and thus a military expansion. They will send a request to be cancelled but Fyodor doesn’t want to be too hasty since their true intentions aren’t confirmed. If the prize is a part of Gaz, it may have some connection with the Chaika issue. He suggests using Kliemann Organization to investigate. Back on shore, Chaika is very confused about her memories. Truth or fake, she doesn’t know anymore. Tooru says to take her time to think about it. Niva believes she will gather the remains, the reason Chaikas existed. She has been waiting for her.

Episode 6
Hartgen’s retainer pleads to his lord to withdraw the tournament as the council is on to them. However he won’t because what he does with this is his business. Guy confronts Chaika’s group. He will not dispel her uncertainty of who she really is. If that is what she wants to believe, so be it. He is here to tell them about Hartgen but they already know about it. From the way they say things, Guy must have already told Bohdan. Nikolai and his team are examining the devastation on the secret island. They are met with Cyril and Ursula who explain about the Chaikas and the Gundo accessory that Niva became. They realize that with this Gundo, Gaz’s remains can be used as a powerful energy source. Their next mission is to head to Hartgen’s principality to investigate. When Bohdan’s group enter the principality, they are immediately attacked. The tournament has begun. They easily take their competitors out and qualify for the next round. Meanwhile we see other competitors fighting among themselves outside the match which might amount to disqualification. However Gillette didn’t even give them a chance and kills them both! Merciless! Chaika’s group is near the principality and a small tavern owner earnestly tells them about this tournament which is just a mask to kill each other. He advises not to go near it till it is over. Nikolai delegates his duties to his men. He and Vivi will participate in the tournament, Zita and Matthaus will seek an audience with Hartgen while Leo will find out the other participants. Before Zita and Matthaus could speak their mind, Hartgen already shoots them down that he will not cancel the tournament or return the remains. I guess he must have got this question for the umpteenth time. He invites them to participate. Chaika’s group easily passes through the next round and Fredrica is not amused that she didn’t get to have some fun since the enemies were taken out too quick before she could have her share of action. Don’t worry. There’ll be plenty of action for you later. Guy confronts Gillette and the latter has no recollections prior to this. Seems Guy saved him then because he saw the hatred in his heart and liked it. Guy mind controlled the soldiers to glomp over and protect him during the blast. As night falls, Tooru, Akari and Chaika plan to sneak in to steal the part and thus they won’t have to be in this tournament. As Chaika returns to the barracks, she is shocked to see Niva leaving voluntarily with Guy. Guy says Chaika’s mission was to bring Niva here and her role is over.

Episode 7
Tooru and Akari sneak into the waterways of the castle to get in. However Shin is expecting them. They know they cannot beat this guy and retreat. They soon learn from Chaika about Niva’s case. Tooru believes this means Guy knew Niva is a weapon. Coming to this, the only way left is to participate through the tournament since Hartgen won’t be giving the part up easily. Fredrica thought her method of forming a contract with her and then beat up everyone would be simpler but Tooru thinks they don’t know how powerful the enemy or the terrain so it is dangerous for her to go berserk. What a downer. Guy brings Niva before Hartgen. Sounds like he is working for him. Seems like Hartgen wants war to start again and despite he is the hero who decapitated Gaz, he felt he made a mistake because he should not have ended the war. War is what gave purpose to their lives. All the participants gather the next day to hear the rules of the next round. They must take the arm bands of their competitors as proof to qualify for the next. Hartgen then makes his speech about transforming this boring and peaceful world into one that warriors like them can live. In short, he wants war. It seems the purple Chaika twins aren’t the only Chaikas but there is a black one too! They talk about how this tournament is just an elaborate plan of bringing Chaikas to her. With some of them in the tournament, she is curious to know which among them is the strongest.

As the battle rages on, Tooru-Chaika team chance upon team Nikolai-Vivi. They exchange information. Tooru and Chaika aren’t working for Hartgen as the duo believe. Vivi doesn’t like Guy because he called her a Chaika. They suspect Guy might be working for Hartgen because he had numerous chances to take Niva but only acted when they arrived here. But Tooru and Chaika are shocked to learn there are other Chaikas under Hartgen. It could be his goal of gathering parts like them. Karen reports about the secret island and lab to the council. Some are bent to take action on Hartgen now while others are cautious not to start a war again. Fyodor suggests for Kliemann Organization to come back with their report before taking action. Of course those who want to see action taken secretly begin theirs behind the backs. Later Karen and Konrad show Fyodor the blueprints of floating castles believed to be 100 years ago and even before they were believed to magically advanced. When report from Kliemann Organization returns, Zita and Matthaus have been imprisoned for their request. The red and white Chaikas have been spotted participating in the tournament as well as a black Chaika spotted with Hartgen. They realize Hartgen must have wished for war. Bohdan and David are seen locked up in a cell and their opponent will be within it. They have been charged of violating the rules because they detected Selma was trying to locate the location of the remains. Tooru-Chaika and Akari-Fredrica make headway progress. From the current situation, Tooru deduces with Chaikas inside the castle, this isn’t about stealing remains from heroes anymore since they are also out to gather the parts. If they try to steal from them, then they might try to steal theirs. Making it tougher is they have Shin on their side. Chaika resolves to stick by him till the end. They have to finish this.

Episode 8
Getting to the next phase of the tournament, Nikolai and Vivi are stopped and thrown into the cell. The guards know they are from Kliemann Organization. Shortly, Tooru and Chaika too because they know they were snooping around castle grounds last night. As they trudge on, they talk about Niva being Gaz’s fortune. If he left a powerful Gundo behind, this means he wanted to bring war even after his death. Maybe that Gundo was needed to be given to someone who wanted to start a war like Hartgen. In that case, his goal has been realized. Chaika wonders if Tooru wants war too if that is the case. Leo sneaks in to bust Matthaus and Zita out. Before they leave, Hartgen’s retainer in the next cell realizes who they are and begins telling the dark truth. Hartgen’s goal is to succeed Gaz and become the next king. Like as though Gaz possessed him after he killed him. After the war, he was a complete different person and researched on how to raise army, to start a war, etc. It only spurred him further when black Chaika arrived. In exchange for bringing change to his monotonous life, she wants Gaz’s parts to be gathered. She proposed this tournament and gather strong men to this castle. At first nobody believed Hartgen will take her seriously but he did. Those who opposed him were disposed off. Matthaus wants Zita and Leo to return to their meeting point while he stays behind to find Vivi and Nikolai. Akari and Fredrica sneak around in the castle and inside a room they are confronted with… Coloured Chaikas! OMG! I thought they were Power Rangers Chaika version or something. Although they make their escape, they are faced with Shin. Fredrica is easily ‘killed off’ (again?) while Akari gets owned.

At the end of the tunnel, Tooru and Chaika are surprised to see 3 Chaikas! Likewise, Nikolai and Vivi couldn’t believe before their eyes is Gillette! Is it him? Not a ghost? Unfortunately, they are put to face each other. With Gillette having no memories, he ferociously attacks. Nikolai has to do all the defending and attacking since Vivi is reduced to a love stricken girl reminiscing her ex-boyfriend. No matter how much screaming she does, Gillette won’t remember. Or would he? Before Gillette could kill Nikolai, Vivi takes up a sword and cuts off his hand! That was enough to bring back his memories. The Chaikas are disappointed and let them leave. Now it is time for white and red Chaika to fight. Bohdan rejects Chaika’s suggestion to work together and gather the parts. Although Bohdan and David attack furiously, Tooru and Chaika have better coordination and win. Seeing David is badly injured, Bohdan makes the surprise call of admitting defeat. She has something else important to protect too. With Hartgen coming in to watch, now he lets them face Shin. The saboteurs face off but Shin is clearly better skilled than Tooru whom he claims is not cut out to be a saboteur since he acts on his emotions. He is easily defeated and useless Chaika becomes a damsel in distress by becoming their hostage. Shin throws down the ultimatum: Give all the parts he has if he wants to see Chaika again. Hartgen and black Chaika are happy things are going as planned.

Episode 9
David ponders their next move but it seems Bohdan has given up. She has lost. She will hand over her remains. However when they return to their barracks, Selma is injured as Hartgen’s guards have taken the part from her. Tooru and Akari bring Fredrica back to their carriage. She is still weak from the poisoning and needs time to recuperate. Oh sh*t! Another Aliens reference because the cat just burst out from her mouth!!! Tooru takes the coffin containing the parts. Chaika is brought before Hartgen and she recalls faint memories of him decapitating her. It felt so real. I’m sure everyone is shocked and happy Gillette is back. So he reports back to Konrad about Hartgen’s plot to start another war and that mysterious Guy who seems to know a lot about Chaikas. Gillette then speaks to Fyodor and the latter informs that some of the council members are acting on their own by deploying a floating fortress to the principality. This will lead to a domino effect of nations joining the war. They must stop this before it manifests. He will do what he can to stop it but since they can’t make it in time by the time of firs contact, it is a job for Kliemann Organization. Gillette uses his credentials to get back into the castle (I guess nobody realized he got his memories back). Tooru and Akari return to the throne room with the coffin. Against Chaika’s wish, Tooru is going to give it to Hartgen for her release. But Chaika is not released yet. Black Chaika makes her appearance and is going to show Chaika the true form that she failed to become. Hartgen is happy that all the parts are here but is baffled what black Chaika is going to do with them. She is going to eat them! She will bring her real father back. Holy cow! Now I realized her lower half is bulging like an octopus! The way she ‘eats’ the parts from her lower half feels like watching a very sick porn… That moaning-cum-screaming… Guy clones get absorbed into black Chaika while narrating about men wanting to have magic but doesn’t possess any organs to do so. It is theorized that if men had parts like Fayla and continuously take magic fuel from all living things, he can master all magic forms without limit and develop new magical arts.

Once the sick porn climaxes, a body explodes out from black Chaika! This young Guy claims he is Gaz. He has returned to take control of the world. To acquire a new body, he died and reborn again. Hartgen begs to fight along his side but Gaz kills him. He was just testing out his magic? Good riddance. And the Chaika twins laugh and giggle their fake father got killed… As Chaika pleads for the truth, Gaz thanks all of them for doing their job splendidly. Chaika is just a generic name for the magic devised to bring him back. Shock! Then he devised a magic to bring his scattered remains back together. At this point, Gaz grows into an adult looking a lot like Jesus Christ… Black Chaika is happy to have brought back father unlike the rest who worked to gather the parts. She is the queen bee and the rest worker bees. Gaz adds that Chaika look a lot like that particular girl who contributed memories for Chaika. He kept her for fun but no longer remembers her name. As Chaika falls into shock, Gillette asks about him going through the trouble of heroes slaying him when he could just die and resurrect in his own castle. It is to plant the fear of death within, because rich, intense emotion and memories are ideal for magic. Further explaining like feelings of anger, revenge, pain, envy, loathe, fear, etc give about to strong magic. But what is the most effective way to create so many people of that nature at once? A war. Long ago, he even created devices to absorb those feelings (those floating castles). He will bring war to those who desire it because it is in their blood to wish for war. He demonstrates by easily destroying the council’s floating fortress using Niva! Behold its superb firepower! I don’t think he exerted any effort at all. Gaz now calls forth his new flying castle. Woah! It is in space and looking so futuristic!

Episode 10
Gaz also fires on other nations and has a fleet of floating devices in space that will gather all human emotions seamlessly for his new magic creation. Black Chaika tells Shin to go serve Gaz. Chaika is dead shock reflecting Layla’s true words. Tooru cannot be more frustrated. He quits being a saboteur and severs his sibling link with Akari (must be the most horrific thing ever) and makes a pact with Fredrica (looks like she’s okay now). Fredrica bites him and part of the contract needs him to eat her flesh or else he will die. Once the pact is form, Tooru is going to kick Gaz’s ass. Chaika wants to come along but Tooru leaves her at a remote place. Trying to be a hero? Gillette reports this to Konrad who in return inform this crisis to Fyodor. However he will not engage or send any army to attack because he knows this is what Gaz wants. Akari, Bohdan’s team, Vivi, Leo and Nikolai fight off black Chaika, the twins and the coloured clones. The clones feel like immortals since no matter how much damage taken, they resurrect. Not until Bohdan kills black Chaika (who is still ranting how she is the one reviving father to death) then all the other Chaikas drop dead. Fredrica cannot penetrate the flying castle. Not even Chaika’s Gundo assistance. Seeing Tooru has made it this far, he is impressed and leaves Shin to handle him. Gaz opens a pathway to let them in. Tooru and Shin get their rematch. Tooru lets his shoulders get pierced so that he could stab Shin in the guts. That’s the end of it. Tooru makes his way into the throne room and Gaz is impressed with him. He thinks Tooru should work for him since it is him who helped the most carrying his body parts here. But Chaika is only on his mind. Screw you!

Tooru attacks and Fredrica gets killed off again. Gaz is amazed by his intent to kill and such emotions work best for him. Tooru cannot get near him and gets pierced throughout his body. But that doesn’t stop him from telling off that Jesus knockoff that if this is all he has got after 500 years, go reborn again! Gaz uses Niva and is going to blast Tooru into the sky. As the walls open, Chaika spots them and uses a barrier to protect and fling them out of there. Gaz aims at Chaika but it seems Niva is fond of her and cannot kill her. Instead, Niva goes to Chaika and becomes her accessory to shoot back at Gaz! WTF. The blast is so freaking powerful that not even bloody confident Gaz could block it with his barrier. His flying castle is ruined and all the space devices stop working. I guess the price to pay is one heck of a mother pain for Chaika. When Tooru returns to motionless Chaika, he can’t help hold her in his arms and cry. Please don’t leave me alone. Is that all he’s got to say after leaving her alone to be a hero? In the aftermath, Gillette reports of Gaz’s self destruction, the death of all his Chaika daughters and Niva in their custody. Kliemann Organization is praised and Konrad is promoted. Now that the war is over, Gillette has traded his sword for the pen, which is ironically harder to wield. Bohdan is now living with Akari who is writing a tale of some intense love between the saboteur siblings. This encyclopaedia thick novel is only the epilogue… Tooru and Chaika take a walk and admire a tree blooming with white flowers.

OVA
The first part might have happened a long time ago and in the early days because Gillette and his men are still running around chasing Tooru and Chaika with full force under their mission to stop the taboo emperor’s daughter. Gillette and his men are intensely chasing Tooru and Chaika through the streets. They take refuge in a theatre and it seems currently a play is in progress. Because Gillette’s team are also here, they need to hide and what better idea for Tooru to hide Chaika in her own coffin! What about him? He must have picked the wrong place since he is hiding in the girls’ changing room! Vivi and Zita happen to come here to check too but the madam thought they were part of the dancing troupe and tells them to get ready. Tooru manages to escape… By cross-dressing as a female dancer! Such a gay voice! Meanwhile, the prop crew carries the coffin since the scene that requires a coffin is near. Yeah… When Akari and Fredrica arrive, they see Tooru in this getup and Akari is not pleased that he decided to let loose on his inner desire. The big issue now is whether to call him big brother or big sister! Oh, Akari! Gillette’s squad is trying to get the play cancelled but are unsuccessful so they are on a lookout. Chaika’s coffin is about to be opened as part of the play when Tooru, Akari and Fredrica impersonating as dancers barge into the scene and change the script into some resurrection of a goddess. All hail Chaimannen! Chaika is made to play along too. The stage actors don’t understand what is going on but also play along. Gillette spots them and goes onto stage with his men to arrest them. However Tooru’s quick improvisation has everyone think Gillette and co are part of the act. During the commotion, Zita and Chaika start firing and cause the entire building on flames. Half of the building is gone! They escape via Fredrica in dragoon form. Everyone is amazed at this play and gives a standing ovation. Nobody believes Gillette is trying to help evacuate them from the fire. Bravo! Encore! Must be good special effect,s huh? Chaika feels bad for destroying an ancient theatre. Tooru couldn’t care less.

The second part if you like Chaika fanservice, well this part has got it covered. We start off with a little Akari fanservice as she is bathing naked in the rivers. Matthaus spots her clothes but got whacked unconscious. Tooru and co need to get the remains that is believed to be resting in this temple. Fredrica is not interested and bails on them. Matthaus reports to his team and confirms of Chaika’s presence but can’t remember what he saw before he got knocked out. At the temple gates, both sides clash. It gets messier when Bohdan steps in but clumsy Chaika steps on a floor plate that causes the entire ground to cave in. Tooru is alone with Bohdan underground. Why is Bohdan so lots of angst? Maybe Tooru is only thinking about the other Chaika. Speaking of her, she is clinging onto a vine as with Gillette. He wants to help her out first but she refuses. Tooru tussles with him for Chaika (her arm must be hurting) but eventually drop her down into the mud. Akari and Chaika then head toward the temple while Tooru deals with Gillette. He makes Leo and Nikolai force to pull the vine Gillette is holding on. Then he kicks them in. One bad deed deserves another because as Tooru mocks them, Vivi flying kicks him down. Mud chase! Chaika discards her muddy dress to avoid being followed by Vivi’s team (Chaika fanservice!). They swim via the waterways to reach the inner temple. Matthaus is looking around and gets lured by Akari’s clothes. Deja vu again because he got clobbered by her. Bohdan follows Chaika to the temple but it seems Vivi and Zita beat them to it and got the remains. Another fight ensues. Deja vu again as Chaika steps on another plate and caves the ground. Luckily Tooru is there to save her. Fredrica wants to join them because she realizes they are fighting (regretting it now?). Chaika then fires into the temple. Everyone else needs to hold on for their lives because at the bottom of this hole are sharp spikes! Yikes! Frustrated Bohdan vows to get even with Chaika next time. Tooru and co inspect the box but only the remains of a baby cockatrice. They realize the reason for it being this temple worship and live alongside it. Chaika feels bad for burning down the temple. Tooru couldn’t care less. Deja vu? Yeah. No wonder Chaika is said to be dangerous and her presence could spark a war. Destroying buildings like that…

Chaika – Tools Of War; Men – Fools For War!
Hey, wait a minute… Something feels odd… It feels kinda short… Holy cow! I just realized it had only 10 episodes for the TV series! What the?! And I thought it may mean that there wasn’t enough plot to sustain the season. Maybe they cut the fillers and get to the climax that’s why you don’t need the typical dozen of episodes that you see every season for a typical anime season. Anyway, this second season overall still doesn’t disappoint but I have mixed feelings if I should say it would be better than the first. At least, still as good as the first nevertheless. It is that kind of ending that makes me hold back on whether this was an overall good series. I know they don’t want to waste time and just show snippets of things and just for the sake of tying things up a little but it feels rushed that when the end credits came up, it felt like the rug was pulled from underneath my feet. Really.

And then I was like, that was really all to it? Oh come on. At least show us a bit more. Because for example Bohdan although is living with them, nothing of the likes say that David and Selma are also staying with them. Logically they should but we don’t see them around anywhere. The last time I saw them was fighting the Chaika clones and that’s it. For Bohdan who has refused to cooperate with Chaika for the entire series and to live somewhat together in the end just feels odd. Perhaps there are no more reasons to kill each other. They know the truth to their existence and everything so what else is there to live for? And it was rather odd for the Chaikas to be casting away their typical dresses in exchange for another design. A signal that the war and mission is over? Well, at least Bohdan’s dress feels normal but I thought Chaika felt like she just came out from some mental hospital… That white gown… Really! Personally I felt they should have just continued wearing their trademark dress since I’m so used to looking at them in it and Chaika definitely looks prettier in it. Yes, she is! :)

Speaking of Chaikas, I wonder if Chaika and Bohdan are the only Chaikas left in the world. Not forgetting Vivi who is a halfie too. That brings me to the case of my own personal expectation to see other coloured Chaikas in this season. It felt like a downer. With only new Chaikas appearing in the final arc and half of the series, I thought I wasn’t going to see any more coloured Chaikas. And then suddenly they popped up! It felt like a disappointment because they are relegated to dialogue-less foot soldiers and their coloured nature felt like those palette swapped ninjas from Mortal Kombat. I don’t know how I got my expectations and hopes for other coloured Chaikas to meet and then slug it out in some Chaika battle royale contest but so far we only get red and white’s rematch and the final free-for-all which isn’t amounting to anything major. Even black Chaika and the Chaika twins feel weak because we don’t hear much of their background and are just deranged Chaikas after all.

On a trivial note, it is still amusing and funny to hear the Chaika speak especially in her broken way, though it feels much less that way in this season like as though she took up some speech class in between the seasons. But I feel her favourite ‘hitei’ is not used much in this season. Even if it was, I thought it was Bohdan who surprisingly made that call during that incident at the secret lab island. I thought it was going to be her spamming that line. Then when Chaika had her turn spamming this when Tooru was about to give the gathered parts to Hartgen. It made me remember she lacked saying this favourite line for this season. Also, I kinda noticed you don’t see Chaika carrying around her coffin as often as she did last season as she is seen carrying her Gundo more frequently. I suppose with the parts occupying a big chunk of space in the coffin, it only makes sense for her to carry her Gundo around. Plus, it saves time for assembling them especially having lots of enemies who are quick to attack.

The characters in the series felt okay and decent. Each have their own part to play but because there are quite a number of characters, something tells me that most of them aren’t properly developed and thinking back, I think it was kinda rushed. Like for Gillette’s men, they were running around to try and piece together the information without their captain. Their reunion with him felt forced although I already had a hunch from last season that this guy won’t be dead so it wasn’t a surprise fact. Ironically Kliemann Organization and Chaika’s group do not cooperate with each other directly and you can see that they act independently of each other although their goal is the same. Bohdan’s groups also make sporadic appearances from time to time and certain showdowns were inevitable but it wasn’t anything major especially David and Selma who felt like extras tagging around. As for the other heroes, it felt like their role was to meet and forget. Because once our heroes get a part from them, you’ll never hear them ever again. Flashbacks are irrelevant. What happens to them in the aftermath is sure unimportant because some are dead, some have gone mad and some trying to live a normal life. What about Cyril and Ursula? They do play their role when necessary but just like others, what happens to them in the aftermath isn’t important.

The antagonists for this season also feel rushed. With Gaz only materializing in the end of the penultimate episode, he makes it look like he might be some powerful badass villain that will bring chaos to the world once more. Heck, his new look after Guy makes him look tamer instead of his old madman look that we saw him in flashbacks. Ironically his ultimate accessory became his undoing and got him killed. How unimpressive. I suppose I can safely assume that with Chaika blowing him out of the sky, there is no chance of anyone gathering his parts in the future because they’re blown to bits. Unless… Niva’s role also feels limited. For a Gundo accessory spending her entire life in some experiment chamber and a few days making friends with friendly Chaika, it was all it takes for her to defect back to her for whatever reasons. Does she have feelings? I don’t know, she said she has personality as what Chaika quoted her. Because it is mind boggling too that Niva left Chaika and followed Guy to Gaz despite she voluntarily did it but it is still odd to think that after thinking that Niva might have been a new addition to Chaika’s group, off she goes to Gaz’s side and remained there till he wanted to finish off Chaika. Just strange. And to think that Gaz planned all this elaborate scheme for his revival and waited for years for everything to be in order only to have it cut short for a few hours. Yeah. You could say he didn’t even get off the ground and was grounded before anything could happen.

So now that Chaika’s goal is no longer relevant, what will happen to Tooru and Akari as her employer? It was never made clear what happened to make them live together but I supposed Chaika could have continued to hire them as her bodyguard. Who knows some drunk guy would want to rape her or something ;p. Hey, she’s cute, no? Because of that, although I don’t remember much about the romance between them but I certainly remember they kissed last season and that meant that they are just more than employer-employee relationship. Therefore this season it seems that has been forgotten because they’re acting like their usual employer-employee thingy and if you don’t remember last season’s kiss, you won’t remember the romance at all. Maybe it is just me but I can’t help think about it. Even that last moment when Chaika seemingly sacrificed herself to kill Gaz and Tooru weeping for her didn’t help reinforce the romance relationship. Not even that final tree watching incident. Maybe Tooru’s excuse of hanging around Chaika was because he loves her and gave that sticking-with-you-till-the-end-because-you’re-my-employer is just an excuse. Maybe… At first Bohdan seem like she continues to harbour feelings for Tooru. You can see her blushing reactions each time David teases her but as it goes, she starts to believe that her comrades are more important to the point that she is giving up her quest for revenge. So is she still into Tooru? Because otherwise why stay with them in the end? Likewise, Vivi for Gillette. I believe the former still has feelings for him but after the shock of seeing him alive and the hand cutting incident, it’s not an appropriate time to call for romance. Let time do the healing first.

Believe it or not, I still feel Fredrica is subtly the joker character of the series. Just like in last season, she goes where she wants although she mainly follows Chaika’s group but basically she does what she wants and is in a world of her own. She bums around, waiting desperately to get into some action but never really reached that satisfaction because it usually ends before she could make her glorious kill. Doesn’t that make her funny even if it isn’t supposed to? Even funnier how she is killed off a few times this season and it hints that this is some sort of a running joke despite we know dragoons are immortals and will regenerate if you don’t strike the core. So do you not believe the Fredrica is the joker girl of the series? Whatever happened to her wish of wanting to fight Tooru to the death? Got bored of waiting? The other amusing character is Akari who is still very much a brother complex saboteur. She can tell with a straight serious face her fetish and love for him like as though it isn’t a crime. Even in the midst of serious chaos she can still do this. Without flinching a bit. It’s like her face is stuck in serious mode because you won’t ever see her turning into that fawning, drooling face that girls make when they fantasize indecent things about their guy. In the end, siblings or not, she’ll still follow him. That is how deep her love for him is. So deep that it makes hell look like a playground.

Action is still the best element of this series and again this season doesn’t disappoint. You get to see lots of fights and other cool stuffs the saboteurs pull so it is not a dull moment. Even if you’re not amused by the revelation of things especially about the backgrounds of who Chaikas are which is just lukewarm (I was hoping one would come up and say “I am your mother” or something. Sheesh. Disappointing), at least stay for the action. Still top class and at times funny too because for example, Chaika’s long ass incantation of her Gundo activation which feels like she is pulling out words from thin air. Of course after taking up Claudia’s advice (in which I don’t see how), she manages to shorten it and it saves time. I suppose it is crucial when you are talking about life and death and that could make the difference.

Iori Nomizu once again sings the opening song for this season like how she did for the last. Shikkoku Wo Nuritsubuse is also another rock piece which is pretty much suitable for the pace and action genre of this series. The ending theme is also by Coffin Princess, Watashi Wa Omae No Naka Ni Iru. Unlike last season, it doesn’t have that ominous-like feel and is just a straight rock piece. Personally, I think I prefer the ending theme than the opener. As the casts of last season are retained, new ones joining the line-up this season include Masako Katsuki as Claudia (Tsunade in Naruto), Hideaki Tezuka as Gaz (Kurahashi in Zankyou No Terror), Sachie Hirai as Niva (Manatsu in Mujaki No Rakuen), Jin Yamanoi as Hartgen (Claudio in Ristorante Paradiso), Sakura Tange as black Chaika (Sakura in Cardcaptor Sakura), Yu Shimamura as Irina (Annie in Shingeki No Kyojin), Yui Ariga as Arina (Kurumi in R-15), Kazuyuki Okitsu as Cyril (Shion in Futari Wa Milky Homes), Nao Touyama as Ursula (Chitoge in Nisekoi) and Masayuki Omoro as Izhmash (Lord Asano in Inu Yasha).

It is sad to see the Chaika series come to an end like this. Despite the twists and revelations that make you feel like as though more are lurking beneath it and threaten to overturn everything we believe in, but turn out to be just average, I still think that this show is still worth the watch with a nice mix of fantasy, action, comedy and colourful (and some quirky) characters. Fans of the first season should watch it to feel complete and those who have not, then start doing so because watch this, you must. And sadly (and fortunately too), there isn’t a hero who was having Gaz’s balls because I believe it could have been the most powerful magical part ever. It could have been a whole new ball game altogether…

 

It isn’t over yet? Maybe this one will end it. This is the third instalment of Papa No Iukoto Wo Kikinasai OVA but this time the ‘stars’ of this episode won’t be a certain young uncle and his 3 nieces. In fact, you can say that they come from the stars! They were never featured prominently in any previous episodes before. Who you might guess? Why, it is no other than the girls’ parents, Yuri and Shingo! In the form of a ghost! OMG! I guess every parent who has departed early would always want to come down to check on how their kids are doing. I don’t know why or how God granted them this single day visit to do so and 4 years later after their demise. Well, better late than never.

A Spring With Special Visitors
Gosh, how time flies. Things have definitely changed within the last 4 years. So of course when they’re standing outside the gates and pressing the bell, nobody could actually see them and either Sora must be thinking some naughty kid is playing ding dong ditch or she must be hearing things. But as ghosts you don’t need to let your hosts open the door. You just walk through the walls! And so the parents see how their lovely kids are grown up and mature. They’re interacting well and fine with Yuuta. Yeah, they should be very proud parents. So after everyone leaves for school and work, time to check out their rooms. First stop, Sora’s room. Plain. Lots of books. Going to college, I guess. Good girl. C-cup bra size?! I guess Sora is at that age to have a boyfriend… NO WAY! Daddy doesn’t approve! In Miu’s room, they see lots of clothing sketches. They believe Miu has decided to become a fashion designer. Finally, Hina’s room. Lots of cute stuffs. Lots of photos of the family. And a heart-warming note of the fun times she spends with everyone and how good her uncle is and that she wants to marry someone like him. Why not him? You’ll see… So with the parents having their fill, is it time to go back? It’s never enough! They decide to go see how their girls are doing at school. They fawn over cute Hina in her PE class. As it is her turn to jump over the horse vault, she trips but did daddy give some divine intervention to make her perfectly land on her 2 feet?! Should be a perfect 10 score! They continue to observe Hina in class for the rest of the day (including getting into trouble for accidentally breaking the lamp during cleaning session – but there’s nothing they could do about it). Yeah, think about it. Doesn’t it feel weird to have a ghost watching and following you the entire day even though they are your parents?

Next, they visit Miu’s school and are shocked to see her on stage singing in a band! I don’t know, Miu sounds pretty much out of tune or rather tone deaf… Then it is Sora’s school and they see her more responsible now as opposed to being the bashful one. After school, a guy comes up to her to confess! Daddy does not approve! Turn him down! She apologizes she can’t. Yes! Because there is somebody else she already likes. SAY WHAT???!!! And no Shingo, that person is not you! Even more heart breaking is because Sora notes to herself that the person she likes is also going to get married! Oh daddy, if you’re alive now, you’d die of a heart attack. So I guess this means the parents can’t go back yet. So they go home and find somebody else in the house .Who could it be using the shower? It is Sasha (Shingo’s ex-wife and Miu’s mother) using the place like her own. She has also designed a wedding dress for Sora as per requested. It is revealed that Yuuta and Sora are really getting married! Oh my God! I suppose Shingo was desperate enough to go read Sora’s diary and it seems they have went through a lot of thinking to have come to this decision. Daddy is sad but understands. I don’t know how this is possible but I guess you can if you want because the parents go soak in the tub like they usually do. Can ghosts do that? When everyone is home, they hear Miu and Hina teasing Yuuta and Sora to kiss. They’re not going to rush it. Good news for the parents that they haven’t kissed before that too.

Whatever the case, the parents are of course worried for them. Even more worrying is how Hina is sick that night. If those 2 didn’t notice this, they don’t fit to marry each other. But surprise, Yuuta and Sora come in to cool Hina’s fever. Hina tells them she saw daddy and mommy. Must be in her dreams, right? The parents now feel assured the way they take care of Hina. The last stop is their own room in which it was left as it was. Like as though time has stopped here. That is when they see Yuuta and Sora coming in all dressed up as newlyweds. Sora isn’t sure why she wants to do this right now but she feels sad she can’t give thanks to their parents at their wedding. Get ready a box of tissues because this is going to be an emotional heartfelt thanks from both of them, thanking and praising how cool and good sister Yuri and daddy Shingo were when they were around. In short, they will always love them. At that moment, the parents push them together to hug and the duo felt like as though they were being hugged by them. When the sunrises, the parents are gone and they wonder if they were really there. Oh, you don’t know. They were right under your noses…

Watching Over You Always…
Sniff, sniff. Oh my. How fast everyone grow up these days. Everything just went by in a blink of an eye and before you know it, they’re already getting ready to marry. If you’re wondering if it is morally right for Sora to marry her uncle Yuuta, please bear in mind that they are actually not blood related in the first place (Sora and Miu are from Shingo’s previous marriages). So perhaps this is the best way to end it (because it was always greatly hinting that Sora the tsundere had feelings for Yuuta) and that includes the series. Assuming that the series ends of course.

So like a time lapse fast forward, despite we do not see anything much Yuuta and the girls, but from what we can see is that they have come a long way and matured greatly. I suppose the girls now have much longer hair is to show proof that time really indeed has passed. And Yuuta has this mature look of a responsible adult instead of some poor college kid. That is why I believe Yuri and Shingo can rest easily when they go back to heaven. Don’t have to make second trips to check on them again in the next 4 years? I am sure they want to be there physically for them every single second. It’s just sad they can’t. Time is a great healer of such wounds. It is not like the kids have forgotten about them either but they have come to terms and accept reality as it is now. No use continuing to wallow in depression for 4 years, right?

Seeing the importance of this OVA, I guess other side characters were left out. For instance, that oddball Raika but I suppose with already 4 years passed, those characters would already have graduated from college. There goes the teasing/love triangle whatsoever. Interesting enough to ponder, now that Miu and Hina are grown up, would that lolicon maniac Sako still love them? Will he classify them as ‘grandma’ like how he always did for Sora? Ah, it would be nice to know but his absence here I would pretty much assume that he has got over them. This also means Nimura doesn’t have to be around to protect those lolis from Sako’s perversion. I do remember Nimura has a soft spot for Miu or may that too have come to passed. The strict landlord Sawako and the next door neighbour who is a seiyuu Kurumi too are not seen anywhere. This OVA is ‘too important’ for the likes of these supporting characters to appear ;p.

This OVA adds lots of heart-warming moments and even better for those who have watched the previous episodes and are fans of the series. The final moments would surely pull your heart strings and for anyone without parents since young would definitely connect and relate to the emotions that are shown here. So this OVA teaches us a lot of things. To be happy with what you have. To be thankful with what you have. To take things in their stride. Things may not work out well and it may be tough initially but it could be a blessing in disguise like in this case we see how everyone turned out so beautifully well that it would bring envy to families who still have their parents around. Wherever your parents are, they will always be proud of their children no matter what. So does this mean I need to get married now to appease my parents before it is too late? But even more disturbing to think that if it is possible for late parents to come down and visit and only watch their kids for a day, doesn’t it feel like stalking, ghost version? The feeling that someone is watching you but there is really nobody there. Be wary… They might catch you in the act. Can’t watch porn and fap in peace…

Gugure! Kokkuri-san

June 7, 2015

You know that spooky game that you play with your group of friends? I suppose it is only human’s nature to mess with the Ouija Board and see something supernatural unfolding before their eyes. Thus always one of those ‘great’ settings for horror movies to pick off the characters one by one. You get what you deserved. Don’t worry. Gugure! Kokkuri-san isn’t exactly a horror anime series. In fact it is filled with so much funny moments that you’d wish you want to play the Ouija Board and summon a spirit of your own. I mean, when a little girl accidentally summons a fox spirit via Kokkuri-san game (Japanese equivalent to Ouija Board), our fox spirit is appalled to see her living conditions and thus takes it upon himself to become her guardian. Lots of hilarity ensues. Oh yeah. I didn’t know summoning spirits would end up with so much fun and chaos.

Episode 1
Kohina Ichimatsu is playing that Kokkuri-san game alone. It is no wonder that a handsome fox spirit pops up to haunt her. You called? She coolly shuts the window and returns to her game! He breaks open but she is not amused and wants him to leave repair money and leave. Yeah, she even pokes salt in his eyes. Kokkuri wonders why she is not a bit shaken. She reveals she is a doll and doesn’t have emotions. She also has no friends. But she has lots of cup noodles in her fridge that she eats every day! Kokkuri will not allow this unhealthy diet and goes to cook for her 3 decent meals a day with 50 different ingredients! This is the first in a long time she has eaten with somebody. He wonders if she feels lonely. Well, she said she was a doll, right? Besides, it isn’t lonely around since she always hear haunting sounds in the next room. Yeah… Kokkuri chases out all the ghosts and thus begins his sole right to haunt Kohina. When Kokkuri is in the bath, Kohina summons him so he cheekily teases her that he will allow her to enter the bath with him. She calls the police and they take him away! Even when he is back, she tells him to go away. Don’t be so cruel. Please have a heart. Dolls have no heart. Kokkuri then wants her to ask him something, the reason why he is summoned. Kohina views using Google is faster. An insult? But even those questions she throws at him, he won’t answer if it is sexual harassment or cheat on her exam. Looks like he can answer tomorrow’s weather… He checks up on Google… Since he isn’t good with machines, the laptop breaks down. Kohina comforts him although it feels like she is making a fool out of him. Kokkuri then uses a lie detector to ask him questions. How old is he? Let’s just say he is 25… When he mentions about having friends as life’s treasures, she asks back if he has any friends. Can’t answer, eh? However she doesn’t want to be his friend so he threatens to hang himself!

Ironically Kokkuri is consoled by Kohina! Long ago when he was a shrine deity, people needed him but as time passes, he was abandoned. He was called many names throughout the ages and I believe “I had so many names” is not the name he wants to add to the list. Kokkuri has been watching Kohina for a long time since the time she put curses on his abandoned shrine. She was the only one who technically visited. Kohina thinks he is a stalker. One day, Kokkuri finds Kohina lying on the ground ‘malfunctioning’ and the need to replenish energy. Read: She’s hungry. Because her balanced diet is only a variety of cup noodles, he confiscates them all including her hidden stock in her closet! How many does she have?! Calling him a demon, this shaken doll whips out a light sabre to kill him! Oh sh*t! Kokkuri actually ran away! For the next few days, Kokkuri never came back despite her attempts to summon him. Not even when she is back to eating her cup noodles. And then she starts crying. You lonely, girl? She wonders if she will get to eat his cooking again. Suddenly he is back. She instantly hugs him. Missed him that much, eh? He reveals that he was watching her all along. His plan to take an indirect approach to teach her a lesson how important he is so she won’t tell him to leave worked. Kohina is now mad… Instead of jumping into his arms and accept his kindness, she beats him up all night. Wow. She really relieved all that stress.

Episode 2
Now that Kokkuri is staying and continuing to take care of Kohina, he also worries about her life social life. As usual she insists she is a doll and doesn’t need such. In retaliation she wants him to prove that he is real and not just a figment of a lonely girl’s imagination. Can’t, right? Kokkuri wants her to practice smiling but I guess it’s so frustrating that Kokkuri even turns into a cute fox version. Well you see, each time she smiles, let’s say her face becomes something like Picasso’s art. However she starts to worry when her smile actually scares away people and cracks glasses! And you can’t simply buy a smile at a fast food joint either. So the next time she meets with Kokkuri, he believes she isn’t ready to smile yet as it should be something natural. Kohina is still mistrustful of his words, believing he is just sweet talking now. He promises on his life he will never do such a thing. Kohina wants to make a pinky promise with him and at that very moment, she puts up the most beautiful smile ever! Kokkuri is annoyed that she can smile like that if she tries but subsequent attempts to make her smile like that ended in failure. You can call her the living Picasso…

One day, Kokkuri stumbles upon an abandoned puppy in a box. The thing is, this ‘puppy’ is a guy in suit! The moment he laid eyes on her, he instantly hugs her! And so this is how Kohina brings him home and Kokkuri instantly rejects this pervert! He introduces himself as Inugami and came to haunt Kohina and wants her to be his master. Kokkuri won’t allow it because he is a dog spirit that was sacrificed to cast a curse on someone while bringing prosperity to his master who will eventually perish. Inugami bribes her with cup noodles and she accepts his deal. Inugami goes on to admit he is Kohina’s stalker. In his last life he was indeed an abandoned puppy. Nobody gave a damn about him except Kohina who stopped and showed her warmth. It was that day she stole his heart and ever since she knows everything about her. Yes, everything. From her 3 sizes to her DNA makeup! Holy cow! Before Inugami could starts his perverted nature, Kokkuri whacks him with a frying pan and puts him in his new home outside: A kennel. To attract Kohina further, Inugami transforms into his cute tiny dog form. Kohina finds him soft and can’t stop touching him. Kokkuri wants to try but was stabbed. Inugami almost tricked Kohina in writing her name but Kokkuri found out that paper was a marriage registration form! He grinds Inugami into ground meat. You can do that with a blender? Of course you can’t really kill a dog spirit so Inugami returns to his normal form but now a woman! He is unsure of his original gender and can switch to either one. Kohina wants to see Kokkuri transform into a woman and eggs him on but he wouldn’t. Either that or transform into a cup noodle so she can eat him! Because Kokkuri won’t allow anymore of Inugami’s shenanigans, they fight outside. She is shooting him while he deflects every bullet with his frying pan. Meanwhile Kohina starts patting a stray cat and thinks she is a cat person. Immediately it is heart break for the canine duo as they team up to get rid of the feline. In their drunkard state complain and run down about cats. Just when it seems they’re heading for reconciliation, Inugami stabs Kokkuri and doesn’t have the slightest intention of making it up with him. Kohina is his. Time for the feud to start up again.

Episode 3
With Inugami living with them, his job other than being a watch dog is to find fault with Kokkuri and pick on him always. He is doing such a splendid ‘job’. Kokkuri enters Inugami’s kennel and it’s like another dimension with this huge space. But the thing that bothers the most is the unlimited Kokkuri merchandise he made! Oh, there is one of Kokkuri too. For him to take out his frustrations! Of course Inugami’s attitude is also a problem for Kohina as he practises selective listening. She has bought a book believed to contain secrets of controlling him but it turns out it was just a book to train your dog. And it was dirt cheap at 100 Yen! Inugami overheard this but the prospects of Kohina turning the training into some S&M session just excites him. So when their training begins, he is disappointed he didn’t start whipping her. As part of the training, Kohina takes him for walks. It started out fine until she got bored of it and let Kokkuri took over. What does this scene of 2 men walking each other look like? One night Kohina can’t sleep so Inugami suggests not counting sheep but him. Guess what? He can split and clone himself! Kokkuri, who is thinking about Kohina’s predicament as a doll, hopes for her to be happy. He goes to check on her but to his horror sees a pile of Inugamis over her and Kohina like a traumatic broken tape recorder claiming she is a doll. Kokkuri whacks all the Inugamis away to the moon. When Kokkuri is away shopping, Kohina thought she could secretly eat her cup noodle. After all that preparation, he returns and the cup noodle is confiscated. She threatens to hang herself. Inugami suggests to continuously feed her with it until she gets sick of it to the point of traumatisation. Of course Kokkuri won’t do something that cruel and punches him.

When Inugami asks Kokkuri about his haunting over Kohina, he thinks he is just like him. However Kokkuri remembers an old promise made and wonders if Kohina still remembers. Don’t count on it because she can’t even remember what she ate for dinner. Thanks to Inugami’s annoyance, Kokkuri’s stomach is stressing out! It really hurts. One night Kokkuri sees Inugami burying something. Hmm… A magazine on how to become popular? When Kohina hopes Inugami to treat Kokkuri with kindness, he doesn’t know how because he was abandoned since the day he was born and had things taken away. The only kindness he knows is of hers and she must teach it to him. Then it turns out to be an act because Kokkuri comes back with that magazine claiming one of its tactics is to play a handsome man with a dark past. Time for another fight? While they’re at it, Kohina takes this chance to eat her cup noodles. Later, Kohina and Inugami play Kokkuri-san but why summon him this way when he is in the kitchen? Her goal isn’t that. He doesn’t live up to his name and she believes doing so might make him look more credible. However an old drunk man appears. Oh sh*t. Did she go wrong somewhere? She tells him to leave but he can’t. He is unemployed and his family left him. He is homeless. You can’t throw out the homeless, can’t you? Inugami’s bite has no effect while Kohina’s personal safety alarm didn’t do its job of driving her enemy away. Is it supposed to work like that? When Kokkuri comes into the picture, he is shocked to see this old tanuki dude.

Episode 4
Shigaraki as described by Kokkuri is a parasitic scum who lives off others. He knows because they were ‘roommates’. Yeah. Kokkuri is forced to clean his filth and Shigaraki made a hole between their walls to become ‘neighbours’. He tries every trick to allow him to be stayed. He also mentions something about hereditary witch household that Kohina is. It is a house that houses animal spirits and usually passed from mother to daughter. Hers is currently haunted by a dog spirit. Kokkuri wants Shigaraki out because he brings ruin to all the families he has stayed with. But Shigaraki bribes Kokkuri with money. Her happiness is short-lived when the money turns into a leaf. So shocked that she goes into sulking mode for 3 straight days! Time to apologize. Here, have a cup noodle. Hooray! Poof! Another leaf… Shock! Kokkuri lets her eat the real deal and says it can’t be help since Shigaraki as a tanuki loves tricking humans. Thinking if he is in his animal form he would be cuter, Kohina requests this of him. Unfortunately he is big, ugly and not cute at all. The human form is better. He transforms into a hybrid form which is much creepier than anything! Shigaraki wants Kokkuri to lend some money and of course the fox spirit won’t lend it to him since he hasn’t paid back his borrowing then. Will he lend if he could? Of course. Here, 200 Yen. Double the amount he borrowed. Well, Kokkuri didn’t say about taking into account inflation, right? Curses! So with his hard earned savings in Shigaraki’s hands, Kokkuri tails him to see how he will blow it away. To his surprise, he bought candies for the kids at the orphanage. Hey wait a minute. This guy is pretty popular. He even donates! The orphanage lady explains thanks to him, they are able to get by. He also brought children here when they had nowhere to go. Don’t feel like burning him down now, do you? So they thought he was a good person pretending to be a worthless bum. But he says it’s his job to trick people so playing the good guy is the easiest job. Therefore he is not a good person and the least he could do is bring the kids of the families he ruined here. So he is the root of evil anyway.

Worried of Kohina’s social life in school, Kokkuri spies on her outside her class. Stalker mode? He observes how she sleeps in class and also chases down girls who tease her as a doll! Then the question that he has been burning to ask: Does she have any boys she likes? There is. Horror! But she claims she is just interested in him other than in love. But the way she describes it is no doubt that she loves him! So our mother-in-law spirits are going to check out this nice guy, Yamamoto. Guess what? He is a gray man alien!!! WTF???!!! Yeah… You shouldn’t judge a person on the looks because Yamamoto is very earthling on the inside says Kohina. She continues to explain scenes she observes of him that constitutes to be a ‘normal human’. Like riding in the basket of the bicycle of a friend over the moon… WTF… Yamamoto seems to be popular with the other boys and interacting well with them too. Kohina introduces them but his greeting is definitely not human type. As for why he is being nice to others, it is because he can take care of others. Suddenly an alien protrudes from his mouth! HOLY SH*T!!! This is his little sister whom he helps to take care when their parents are at work?! I wouldn’t have guessed it… And the odd part is nobody except Kokkuri (because he is playing the rebuking part) is afraid of seeing this scene but in awe. When it is time to go home, Kokkuri gets to see Yamamoto’s ‘parents’. A pair of MIBs!!! That’s not his parents, right? Yeah… They’re going away and the next time you see him in school is next month…

Episode 5
Since Inugami is in female form, Shigaraki wants to hit on her despite knowing well she is a guy. The moment is now! He won’t back down even if Inugami pumps several bullets in his head. I guess you can say he is really thick headed. And with Inugami all over Kohina, this is a cause for concern for Kokkuri has the morals of this household is falling apart. Every morning in class, there is always a vase of flowers on Kohina’s table. Nobody cares about it and certainly Kohina as a doll doesn’t. But every morning without fail there is sure fresh flowers in it. Who could it be? Ah, this stalker is always watching her… And always close to being crushed for seeing her lack of response. So when the teacher wonders if Kohina is being bullied and her reply is that she isn’t bothered, the stalker cannot take it anymore and comes in with a flying kick. Jimeko (literally means bully) wants Kohina to at least be sad for being a bully victim and admits she is the one who placed the flowers. Now that teacher has heard it, time to head to the office… When she’s back, she starts blaming her although it is clearly her fault she reaped what she sew. Even more disheartening Kohina doesn’t remember she sat next to her last year. She tries to brag about using up her allowance to buy those flowers but it just makes her look dumb. No emotional damage for Kohina. Only her wallet took a big damage. All that hard work for nothing… Why doesn’t she stop if it’s difficult for her? Well, her parents told her never to leave things unfinished. Perseverance? So why bully her? Does she hate her? She can’t say but ran away while blushing like mad. I think I know why… Flashback reveals she was a transfer student last year. She wanted to make friends but thanks to her shy tsundere personality, she failed. Her last hope is Kohina who sat next to her. She tried getting her attention but was ignored since she was engrossed thinking about cup noodles. Even when she hit her to get noticed, she was greeted with an uppercut! All her attempts to get her attention failed and soon she lost sight of her goal and started this flower bullying. I guess she got desperate. And today she’s placed magnolias which symbolize friendship. Too bad Kohina doesn’t know what it means. So frustrated…

Suddenly there is a new transfer student in class: Kokkuri! Nobody cares that he is an adult?! Kohina starts throwing rock salt (literally) at him to make him go away. But what can she do if the teacher doesn’t even believe he is a fox spirit. Seems thanks to Shigaraki’s trick, his transfer paper is actually a leaf. Kohina wants the leaf to be turned into money or cup noodles but that will constitute as a crime and stomach ache respectively. He explains about this illusion thingy but Kohina still wants to eat the illusionary cup noodles. It is just stomach ache, right? When she returns from toilet, all the girls are over Kokkuri! Man, he is popular! He looks like a lolicon in the making… Anyway when Kohina goes to him, all the girls run away. I guess she is scarier. Because Kokkuri can be a transfer student, Inugami also wants to be one. Oh, he was the one who gave Kohina the rock salt. And so nobody cares about another adult as the transfer student. Inugami then threatens Yamamoto with a gun to switch places with him so he can be next to Kohina. When Inugami turns into a female, the boys are in shock. Heck, she didn’t even try to lie about it so Kokkuri burns him! I don’t know how Kokkuri managed to convince everyone about this unnatural phenomenon. Kohina wonders why Kokkuri came to this school. Is it to make friends? Partly. He believes if he does, Kohina will also have more friends. The friend of a friend is also your friend. However with all the boys feeling reluctant to mix with those ‘adults’, Kohina says that ever since he came, the distance between her classmates has grown. He made it worse, eh? Oh, the friend of your friend is only an acquaintance. If it’s any consolation, only the distance between Kokkuri and her female classmates narrowed.

Episode 6
Kohina could see black floating things. No, she doesn’t have an eye problem. She can see spirits! As she is being told by Kokkuri not to make contact with them as humans can’t coexist with them, she ends up getting into trouble and being devoured by one already! He gives her a seal but she immediately tests it out on Inugami! What a waste. One evening, she sees an injured Cyclops and treats it from a distance. Technically this counts, right? When Kokkuri finds out, he immediately bats it away into space. But a few days later it returned and before Kohina could keep it a secret, Shigaraki finds out and advises her to stay away for her own good. He is going to sell it but we can see money blinding him. This leads to an argument the monthly allowance he receives from Kokkuri isn’t enough. She tells him to get a job but he replies it is his job to stay professionally unemployed. Therefore she breaks her piggy bank and gives him her entire savings of 5 years, all in 10 Yen denominations. Either that or nothing. In exchange, Kohina wants him to walk Inugami. You think Shigaraki is the master of disguise? Could have but he makes it so obvious and dumb. Because anybody could tell this grown up man in a girl’s clothes is him! There is even this dumb switcheroo trying to fool Inugami which is the real one. However the catch is that if she picks the wrong one, she’ll get to walk with the real Kohina. Inugami is in a great dilemma because she doesn’t want to call this old guy her true darling. And because of this pride, she ends up being walked by him. At first she got dragged around but subsequently Shigaraki carries her like a princess.

Kohina continues to treat and play with the Cyclops well every day. Shigaraki observes when Kohina scrapes her knee, the Cyclops is licking and staring at the blood longingly. He takes her away and warns her again. When they return home, Kokkuri gets the wrong idea the old fart licked her wounds. Time to die! When Kohina is asleep, the Cyclops sneaks into her room and is about to kill her but luckily Shigaraki intercepted and killed it. He had suspected that it has developed a taste for human blood and can no longer coexist with humans. If he let it go, it will kill other children. Before it dies, it cursed Shigaraki. The hardest part is for him to cover this up as he puts a spell over her eyes. Next morning, Kohina can’t see any more spirits. As for the scar over his right eye, Kokkuri thinks he got what he deserved for flirting with women. Later Shigaraki tries to console Kohina about not being able to see the Cyclops anymore. To his surprise, she laments that it would have been a great topping for her cup noodles as she has been feeding it every day and would have taste like it. Fearsome child… Lastly, Kokkuri is attracted by Inugami’s coffee. As usual, the latter hates and tries to annoy him. Kokkuri wants him t come clear why he hates him so much so Inugami starts reading a book with over a million reasons why he hates him! Basically he hates everything about him! Not only that, he hates everything else except Kohina. This includes hating himself. But there is one other thing he loves: Seeing the suffering of others! Maybe he should go see a therapist. Another thing that excites him most is seeing Kohina scorn him! He is so excited thinking about this that he starts to gush out blood. Inugami notices his coffee is now cold and serves it to Kokkuri while he makes himself a fresh one.

Episode 7
It was love at first sight. Tama the cat god starts stalking Kokkuri to a point it is obvious. The question is when she is going to confess. And true enough she does. She wants Kokkuri to give Kohina the doll to her. Hah! You think she was in love with him?! Get real! Introducing herself as the poster girl of the Japanese cafe, Nennekotei, she reveals she has a fetish for macabre dolls. At first she is confused about Kohina being a human or doll because she moves and talks but comes to conclude she is a doll. Or just in denial? Because if Kohina is not a doll, then Kokkuri is just a cosplayer in a fox gear. Besides, seeing a man with a doll is so unsuitable. Tama claims she is most suitable to own Kohina. Then here is Inugami to complicate matters… Back home, Kokkuri is tired after managing to chase her off. But he notices Kohina not moving and staying still. Is she trying to practice being a doll? Later as Inugami and Shigaraki eat with her, they think she is really taking this doll thingy serious. Till Kokkuri points out something is obviously wrong. I mean, couldn’t they tell from her looks this isn’t Kohina?! Tama must have switched her. Indeed she has. Now Kohina is at Nennekotei being served by her. This place is always empty and no customers simply because the interior decorations are so scary. But Kohina soon learns that Tama is heard to deal with. She also has selective listening. Tama tries to bribe her with a cup noodle. Kohina won’t be swayed till she learns it is original flavour. Okay! Now she lives with her. The rest go to her rescue but outside Nennekotei is a barrier blocking them. Even their website states so and an RPG-like quest on how to remove it. They thought of bringing down its reputation but it already as 1 star… Kohina discovers Tama is more demanding than Kokkuri since she is a perfectionist. The last straw came when she saw Tama trying to kill her cup noodle! I’m not sure about Kohina’s tactic of surrounding Tama with water and playing the shamisen, this was enough to ‘defeat’ her as she walks out of the cafe and return to the rest.

While cleaning the storeroom, Kokkuri sees a box and a caution not to open it. He can’t resist and does so. The curse turns him into a woman! Thinking the letter is how to cure it, to her dismay it is just a teasing I-told-you-so and burns it. Kohina discovers this as Kokkuri pleads for a way to return to normal. Words will appear if you hold that paper up to the light. Oh sh*t… Kokkuri thought her family did all this traps to protect the magic secrets but Kohina reveals that they revel in seeing others frustrated. A bunch of sadists… Kokkuri asks for her opinion about her beauty. However Kohina becomes critical. Even in his male form he isn’t fox spirit or human and doing household chores as a male is the only distinguishing factor. Turning into a woman has weakened that identity. Not wanting the rest to find this out, Kokkuri suggests running away but Kohina tells her to do it herself. Too bad the rest found out. Shigaraki immediately starts to court her and even promises to give up smoking, gambling and even find work as long as she marries him! Is this just sweet talk of a desperate man? Shigaraki tries all sorts of tricks to make Kokkuri marry him but the latter is only left in frustration that he isn’t listening. Shigaraki knows a way he can return. Remember the Frog Prince story? Not going to fall for that one! The courting continues…

Episode 8
Kohina finds a scroll that may contain the clue on how to turn Kokkuri back. But the moment she reads it, she becomes disappointed, burns it and falls into depression. It seems the scroll is just another mockery that she can’t turn back and will be stuck like that for the rest of her life. Feel like hanging herself? Let’s not get extreme! A few days, Kokkuri seems to be getting used to her body and it makes the rest jealous because it sounds like she’s bragging it. Heck, Kokkuri even starts becoming like a woman putting all sorts of skin care, etc. When Shigaraki won tickets for a hotspring trip, Kokkuri thought they will be going on a date. But since the others are coming and doesn’t want to be left out, might as well join in. Tama is also coming. At the expense of turning Inugami into a pet dog and taking his place. Surprisingly Yamamoto is also there although Kokkuri isn’t fond of him. Oddly, Kohina explains Yamamoto isn’t her friend but Kokkuri’s. What? Kokkuri is disappointed that this hotspring inn has none that cures his curse although Shigaraki says there may be one somewhere in town. But since they’re hungry and want to soak in first, they’ll do that later. And so Shigaraki must be feeling left out that the rest are girls and having ‘fun’. Ah well, he’s got Yamamoto fro company. He can’t take it anymore after hearing the girls ‘playing’ with themselves so he climbs over the fence to peep. To his dismay, they’re wearing bikinis as they foresee this. Then they throw whatever stuffs to make him fall back to his section. Kohina asks Kokkuri’s reason for hating being a woman. Before he could properly explain, the rest view him with scorn thinking he is bragging about it.

After everyone has a delicious dinner, Kokkuri wants to go find that hotspring but everyone is too full to move. Looks like she’ll have to find it herself. To her surprise, Shigaraki comes along and even more surprising, he is trying to be a gentleman with her. I’m sure this is confusing the hell out of her. As they search around, finally they find one and just as Kokkuri soaks in, there is a disclaimer saying it doesn’t work on middle aged women. Curses! So we see Shigaraki accompanying Kokkuri around, including playing at a shooting gallery. Kokkuri sounds like she has resigned to her fate to forever live like this. Hey, at least she can get all the lovely attention from Shigaraki. Then it gets romantic when Shigaraki carries her and spouts some pretty romantic lines like making her forget that she was ever a man. And some pretty weird trivia about the kanji writing for ‘person’ about leaning on others. Anyway Kokkuri must be feeling confused. It is the right mood as their face get closer and ultimately a kiss. At that point, the curse is broken. Kokkuri turns back into a man and this gay scene is just freaking disgusting! Oh why oh why does he have to turn back into a guy now?! And that’s how the quarrel began. The magic of the love is gone. Fighting in their animal form… Cute! Ah well, who’d knew that such a simple kiss was the breaker. As narrated, this is actually another curse of Kohina’s family that returns one to normal when they are having a touching moment with the opposite sex. To say, this means their feelings were true then? Oh God, I don’t want to think about it…

Episode 9
A talk about dyeing hair makes Kokkuri worried he might go bald. Thinking he is a handsome main character and won’t get that, suddenly a lump of hair in his hands. Oh sh*t! Panic time! He thought being in fox form would prevent that but he is shedding lots of fur! Absurd reasoning that he is handsome even when bald isn’t doing him any good. No, you can never look like Sean Connery! He tries to Google it but his worst fears come true when Inugami finds out. To prevent future torments, Kokkuri ‘kills’ him and buries his body! Then Kohina thought it was a joke to pull out a white hair from a person who has mostly white hair. Kokkuri is trying to contain his anger but blows his top when she mentions she is only joking. I guess he didn’t get the joke. Is this even something to joke about? Kokkuri becomes so worried that he can’t sleep and being clumsy breaking things. Hair becomes a taboo word and the slight hint of it sends him into panic mode. He rushes down to the store to buy all the hair solutions. But the more he puts, the more he shreds. Then it goes out of control. He turns into a giant lump of hairball! The rest want to sheer it. But as told, Kokkuri tends to get very emotional during seasonal shedding of hair. After convincing him that they can make him cute and stylish, he allows them to cut. But they screw up big time because now he looks like a hairless Chihuahua. The stress had him hospitalized.

Inugami is bored and goes to bug Kokkuri. However a more annoying issue is that there is no progress between Inugami and Kohina and it is already almost the end of the year. Inugami tries to talk to Kohina but she doesn’t want to be bugged while eating her cup noodles. To a point when she is so deep in thoughts of her cup noodles that Inugami is literally ignored. I guess this calls for desperate measures. Inugami leaves a note saying that he has run away and an emphasize not to come look for him. Yeah… Kokkuri is pissed to see him hiding in the lawn’s bushes. That is not even running away from home. So they ignore him and return to whatever they’re doing. Just when Inugami thought Kohina returned to find him, she remembers about her cup noodles and returns. Cup noodle > Inugami. So sad… To vent his anger, he cancels some programmed recording of their afternoon drama! However the thought that Kohina doesn’t care for him hurts deeply. He starts to monologue about the lights in the house and how he was used to staring at the stars in the sky. Now it seems he hates those lights in the house again. But there may seem to be hope when Kohina extends her hand for him to come home since there would be leftover food without him. Inugami gladly goes back into her arms only to find out it is Shigaraki in disguise! Holy sh*t! He just died at that moment. And because of that, Inugami actually ran away from home. Too traumatic to handle?

Episode 10
While taking a walk, Kokkuri and Kohina stumble upon a rare red maple lead. This leads them to a maple tree that is blooming with them. It is odd because now it is autumn. They see a woman, Kureha waiting at the tree as she claims she is waiting for someone. From the way she says things, she must have been waiting for a long time and she doesn’t know why this tree is blooming with red maple leaves. She doesn’t believe Kokkuri is a real fox spirit and thinks he is a cosplayer despite he transforms to show her. Anyway, she has been waiting so long she fears she doesn’t even remember how he looks like! At least she has a portrait of him. All beautified up… Since the duo are heading back to town, they could at least help her find him. A couple of rice coupon for their efforts. Wow. It must be a bargain. Kokkuri deduces Kureha must be a maple tree spirit. They go to see Tengu, the god of the mountains for information. For 3 photos of handsome young boys, he will help them out. OMG! This guy is a shotacon!!! He settles for Kokkuri transforming into a little boy and taking his pictures. WTF. Tengu has got bad news. The guy Kureha waited for died decades too. Kureha is also dead and she probably knew all that and still waited. Therefore she is a spirit bound by the maple tree. Kokkuri is embarrassed his guess was off the mark. Kohina recorded his confident deduction… When they return, Kokkuri tells Kureha the truth and she is shocked and falls into depression. It’s like all the built up stress inside her suddenly exploded. Although she knew all that, she has been doing this for so long and can’t cross over to the afterlife. She can’t give up on her own.

Shigaraki can’t stand to see a woman’s tears so he is going to show them about invoking spirits. He is a priest and can do that. So how to you summon a spirit? You whip out your handphone and call the spirit world! WTF?! But the moment they hear his name, they hang up! Oh God… Is he blacklisted? Eventually Shigaraki ran out of ‘spirit power’ and can’t call. Because his prepaid amount is empty! No more financial power! Kohina lends him her handphone and before he could mess it up, Kokkuri takes the call and thanks to his maturity, the day is saved. There is good news and bad news. Bad news always goes first, right? Kureha’s boyfriend spirit cannot be invoked because after he died, he never waited for her and requested to reincarnate immediately. The good news? She doesn’t have to wait anymore. The promise to meet was made a long time ago. For some reason, her boyfriend chose to be reborn as that maple tree. Kureha starts to remember his words about how the leaves will turn red each time they meet. Kohina and Shigaraki quip about the patient couple and match-make in heaven and Kokkuri laments he only attracts losers. If you’re wondering where Inugami is, remember he ran away from home. He got some lecturing by Yamamoto but is still adamant they must come and get him. So he goes on wandering around the world and for some reason, ended up on the moon. His thoughts matured and realizes there is no place like home because every little thought is for Kohina. E-L-K? The burning from the re-entry must hurt… In the aftermath, Kohina tries to be smart by deducing via biology about the red leaves. Everyone is surprised when the tree finally talks.

Episode 11
To smite Kokkuri, Inugami drinks his fox water and turns into a baby! Although he can’t talk, he thinks of using his baby appeal to appeal to Kohina. Remember, keep all dolls out of baby’s reach. Plan backfired. Shigaraki seems to have also drank it and is now a young boy. Too bad he can’t patron 18+ places. Kokkuri explains this anti-aging beauty serum of a popular brand that he bought. But does this mean Kokkuri must be really old? Because if he drinks it and didn’t turn this young… Kokkuri has a hard time taking care of their mischievousness. Then there is this ranting by Shigaraki about the allure of panties and flipping up skirt. To avoid him from doing that, Kokkuri forces him to drink more of that water and turns him into a baby to reduce his mobility. But this means another baby to look after… Kohina won’t help and secludes herself out of the babies’ reach. Because it’s dangerous when the babies get her parts? Her parts? Inugami demonstrates by swallowing and spitting out her eye! The stress of taking care of the babies got to Kokkuri that when he drinks the water, he turns into a young boy! Kohina thinks he is broken and hits him! Funny, it worked on appliances… Showing him porn magazines or the rattle sound won’t stop his crying. What did? Kohina’s broken smile. Silenced into fear… But does this mean Kohina must take care of them all? She requests them to transform into their animal version. Now to call for the animal shelter! Just joking. She calls an adult for help. Who could it be? Tama! She is more than happy to help out. Cute little boys look like cute little dolls, right? Oh no. Shigaraki almost ‘died’ when she threw him too high to the ceiling. His dead looks look like a doll and she finds it more appealing! Then she makes curry but something sinister is moving inside… Kohina checks it out only to be eaten by the pot! I don’t know how they managed to get rid of whatever predator was inside. Before going out, Tama makes Kokkuri wear girls clothes and starts snapping away. Kokkuri wants to hold Kohina’s hands so they won’t get lost but the latter refuses, claiming she isn’t fond of a boy cosplaying as a girl in broad day light. But in her heart, she is actually worried if he would return to normal and remember her. Kokkuri touches her head thinking she has fever. Kohina tags his shirt and follows him. At that point, the effect of the water wears off. What does Kokkuri look like wearing a girl’s dress in public? He is going to fall into some serious shock… In the aftermath, he calls the company to complain about the fake product he was being sold too. Oh, the other babies return to normal too.

Episode 12
On Christmas Eve, Kohina is thinking of sacrificing the money to buy chicken for a cup noodle toy car! Suddenly an old guy (with heavy panting) wonders if he could buy it for her! Thankfully Kokkuri is here to beat the crap out of him. Yeah. That fox spirit was tailing Kohina thinking something like this would happen. Like a stalker, eh? When the guy takes a good look at Kokkuri, he suddenly becomes afraid thinking he is a ghost. For the first time, somebody we see is scared of him. Kokkuri tries to mess with him but we learn that his fear stems from being unable to sue! Yeah. This guy is a workaholic lawyer who is out to get a present for his daughter, Noel who is around Kohina’s age. You can tell how much he cannot leave his work behind since he even thought of a law book as a present! So they agree to help him choose a present. Don’t bother asking Kohina because the cup noodle toy car is on her mind… More worries for lawyer guy because he fears getting the wrong present or just throwing a party will get him sued! After finishing their shopping, it is time to meet Noel. Inside the house, she is already drunk (on a non-alcoholic drink) and cursing other people! OMG! You do it yourself, dad. Kokkuri gives him a ribbon charm. When he talks to Noel, she starts scolding him! And you know what? He is so happy she responded instead of ignoring him! Such low standards… Noel acts like a tsundere that she doesn’t want Christmas but her body reaction is dying to celebrate it. They have lots of fun with their mini party and Kohina probably got her wish of that cup noodle toy car. When it’s time to leave, Kokkuri reminds him the charm is going to wear off. The lawyer understands and wants to have a little moment with Noel. After he is done, he is glad to have made some great memories. Thanks to this, he is ready to cross over now. Well, I suspected something like this. Yup. Mr Lawyer is a ghost and died in some accident a few days ago although in the eyes of the public he is considered missing. He told Noel he will be going away for a while so as not to ruin her Christmas mood. He reveals how he hated his workaholic father and vowed never to become like him. However, overwhelmed by everyday life, he eventually became the same. By the time he realized and regretted it all, it was too late as he couldn’t get his family to notice him. He is grateful for Kokkuri for giving him a last chance to be with his daughter. With that, he crosses over. Later on their way back, Kohina previously guessed that he was a ghost because he had no shadow. She wonders if authorities find his body today and realized he died prior to it, won’t today’s events be somewhat supernatural to Noel? Or will it be just a dream? Kokkuri believes there is proof that there was a ‘ghost’ there in that paranormal group photo they took. They realize they may have forgotten something. Indeed. Inugami is waiting back home alone for the chicken party…

On New Year’s Eve, Kokkuri is motivated to get into spring cleaning. Yeah, he loves it. But the others are not really enthusiastic and bum around under the kotatsu. So when Kokkuri manages to force Kohina to help clean (he took her New Year allowance hostage), Kohina thinks she can delegate the job to Inugami and wants him to help take out the trash. Take out the trash, you say? On no. How did he interpret that? I don’t know what Super Saiyan blast he died that he razed down the entire house! Because everything except Kohina is trash to him! Well, he forgot to burn himself. He is going to get punished by Kokkuri… I don’t know how with whatever Kohina’s family legendary items they manage to repair the house back to good as new before dinner. On New Year’s Day, they visit the shrine and it feels odd that our bunch of god deities are visiting it. Shouldn’t they be visited? As Kohina prays, Kokkuri notes about the fragility of human life and how short it is compared to the deities’. It would be painful to say goodbye again so he makes a wish that the time now would last forever. Later Kokkuri must be regretting to ask Kohina about her wish. Not only it is about cup noodles, more disheartening that the other characters are passionately mentioning about their sick fetish and dreams! More money for Shigaraki, more Kohina for Inugami, more dolls for Tama, more little boys for Tengu, to know more about Earthlings for Yamamoto and… Well, we do know what Jimeko wants, do we? Still spying from afar… Kokkuri is appalled nobody wished the same as him. And thus begins another stressful year for Kokkuri. He should have wished for more stress medication.

Happily Haunting Each Other…
Ah well, all good things must come to an end. It was an enjoyable affair from start to finish. I suppose shows like these without plots are good because you don’t have to worry and add to the stress about tying up things. The comedy is hilarious and sometimes to the point of breaking the fourth wall. Also, every character has the potential to play the part of rebuking especially Kokkuri and Kohina. For Kokkuri it feels like he is the voice of reasoning that nobody will listen to (something like Gintama’s Shinpachi) and for Kohina it leans more towards her ‘selfishness’. Uh huh. She usually rebukes because she doesn’t feel like playing along with whatever shenanigans. But this formula to some may get repetitive although personally for this season I didn’t find it boring.

There are also some touching moments like Kureha and Noel’s dad case and it adds a little drama effect into things. But of course with this series being a supernatural genre, it wasn’t surprising that they pull off some supernatural stuffs like Noel’s dad because if you were paying attention, you would have guessed it quickly that something wasn’t normal to begin with. Of course such supernatural settings aren’t enough to scare the daylights out of you.

The character dynamics are quite varied and thus making them lovable and fun. Like Kokkuri who is supposed to possess people but instead becomes a stressful guardian and housekeeper. From cleaning to cooking and doing the laundry, I guess you will never get such a good housekeeper who also looks like a handsome man as well as a supernatural deity. Some may draw comparisons with Kokkuri with Kamisama Hajimemashita’s Tomoe and personally I feel Kokkuri is better compared to Tomoe who is more stuck up and playing hard to get. Well, Kokkuri doesn’t have a girl to fall for him. Too bad… Only guys want to hit on him in his girl form… Remember, there is no real romance drama in this series! With freeloaders in the house and he as the only one doing the real work, looks like he might start losing his hair faster and get more stomach cramps thanks to all that unnecessary stress. Have you ever heard of a stressed out deity before? Kokkuri might be the first.

Despite Kohina claiming herself to be a doll and void of emotions or the need of other things (like friends), at times it may seem like she is contradicting herself. Because as we can see that she does fall into emotions like shock and depression although her facial expression remains the same. That itself is already considered as displaying emotions, right? At least in my books. Therefore coming up with such remarks feels just like an excuse to just play her role. Of course all for the sake of comedy. Especially her love for cup noodle feels like the running gag of the series. She really loves them a lot, does she? But there are some parts that may leave you wondering about her family, her past especially her connection with Kokkuri. It is very briefly hinted but nothing more explored. Don’t want to ruin the comedy?

Shigaraki isn’t as bad as it seems despite being portrayed as a lazy swindler and drunk gambler-cum-freeloader. There are times when he plays the guardian to Kohina when Kokkuri isn’t around and for a guy his age, he certainly has more experience on his side. Although, many preventable unfortunate events are actually caused by him. Uh huh. He is the root of it all. Then there is Inugami whose role on the surface looks like to spite and annoy Kokkuri to death. He does this job very well but I don’t think Inugami hates Kokkuri that much because if he did, he would have just killed Kokkuri or find a way to banish him forever from being near to Kohina. Therefore with the freeloaders constantly bugging Kokkuri, ultimately they are more family than anything. Well, I suppose this is their way of staying together.

Other supporting casts are fine too but I thought they would add more freeloaders to Kohina’s household as the series progresses. Like Tama who would have literally brought the house down if she stayed along with those guys. It will be chaotic every day since the tussle for Kohina will never end. Yamamoto as the only non-Japanese fictional creature is mysterious enough but also mind boggling enough to warrant us viewers to note why the heck nobody suspects him as different. Maybe it is good that everyone here doesn’t discriminate. It’s not the outside that counts but the inside. Some characters like Jimeko and Tengu I was hoping to make than just more than one episode appearances and even end up living in Kohina’s house. But I guess they were just side characters but their short cameos still spiced things up.

Although there are numerous animal deities in the Japanese folklore, adding too much of such ‘animals’ would have ruined the series and turned Kohina’s house into a zoo of deity animals. Imagine a dragon, a tiger, a turtle, a swan, a wolf, a snake, a monkey, a spider, etc. But oddly with a handful of Japanese folklore creatures and they even include a western sci-fi alien character, the famous kappa is nowhere to be seen…

On a trivial note, the next episode preview isn’t exactly a preview of the next episode. Instead it features a real life furry pet creature. I don’t know whose pet it belongs to (whether it is some random people or the production staff’s since all of them have names), but if you have a soft spot for animals, this is where you go “Awww… So cute!” albeit it is for a meagre 10 seconds. Though cats and dogs take up most of the segment, rabbits and parakeets are featured sometimes.

Art and drawing are pretty standard. But sometimes it feels like you have best of both worlds because for the supernatural deities, they look pretty bishoujo or bishonen in their human form whereas they become more kawaii and cuddly cute in their animal version. This includes Shigaraki because as an old geezer he doesn’t look half as bad while his new tanuki form takes on a cuter and cartoonish approach so as to appease to us viewers and go easy on our eyes :). Oddly, Tengu is always in his chibi form in the show and the only time he is in his true ‘serious’ form is in the opening credits.

Because Inugami is wearing his suit like a butler, sometimes I can’t help but draw striking resemblance of him and Kohina like that pair in Inu x Boku SS, Miketsukami and Ririchiyo. (Curiously, Miketsukami is a fox spirit and annoyingly devoted to his master). Kohina is of course modelled after the Kokeshi doll and I suppose she is a hybrid between this type of doll as well as the Hina doll. However at times you will obviously notice that Kohina has a ‘pretty face’. Instead of her typical emotionless face trademarked by her black oblong eyes, there are times when she turns into her bishoujo mode with big sparkling beautiful eyes! I love Kohina in this form because she’s cute and pretty but too bad for the sake of her character and role, we’ll be seeing more of the emotionless doll version.

Ryou Hirohashi did a pretty good job in voicing the monotonous Kohina. You might think it is an easy job not having to portray a variety of emotions but if you consider this comedy genre, my guess is that it is hard to keep your laughter and a straight face while voicing out the character. Several takes could be needed. But then again I could be wrong since she does voice similar emotionless characters before like Alice from Aria The Animation. It was definitely Daisuke Ono’s voice behind Kokkuri because from the way he goes into an emotional roller coaster, he very much reminded me of his role as that calligraphist, Handa in Barakamon. They feel so similar. Just turn this one into a fox spirit. Something in me feels that Yukari Tamura’s role as the narrator feels wasted. Not to say that she is bad in her role but I thought it is a waste for her voice to be relegated to just narrating a couple of lines in the same kind of tone. You won’t hear the typical Yukari Tamura going into her squeaky trademark voice but more of the calming and low version.

Other recognizable seiyuus include Takahiro Sakurai as Inugami (Suzaku in Code Geass), Jouji Nakata as Shigaraki (Giroro in Keroro Gunsou), Ryoko Shiraishi as Kokkuri female version (Hayate in Hayate No Gotoku), Rina Satou as Kureha (Misaka in To Aru Kagaku No Railgun) and Ai Nonaka as Noel (Kyouko in Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica). Those that I didn’t recognize but should have include Chiwa Saito as Inugami female version (Chitose in D-Frag!), and Hisako Kanemoto as Jimeko (Ika in Shinryaku! Ika Musume). Other casts include Yukana as Tama (Cecilia in Infinite Stratos), Kazutomi Yamamoto as Yamamoto (Yoshida in Blood Lad), Kousuke Toriumi as Tengu (Kiba in Naruto) and Nobuo Tobita as Noel’s dad (Domon in Flame Of Recca).

The opening theme, Welcome! Disco Kemokemoke is sung by the trio of Daisuke Ono, Takahiro Sakurai and Jouji Nakata. It is quite a catchy tune to the disco beat so don’t be surprised to find yourself wanting to get up and do a little dance or sing along to its cutesy lyrics. The ending theme, This Merry-Go-Round Song by Atsushi Suemitsu is a slow touching pop and although it may sound a bit monotonous, it isn’t that all bad. There is a piano instrumental version of it (as a special ending theme) and it sounds quite lovely. But I still prefer the opener, though.

As far as this anime is concerned, playing the Kokkuri-san game didn’t end in horrifying tragic for our little girl perhaps because she already comes from a family that holds various mysterious and weird powers. This doesn’t mean you should be taking out your Ouija Board now and start summoning spirits to your beck and call. Reality is not kind enough to give you that. You are not lucky to get that kind of treatment. The spirits will have a hard time being stressed out if everybody treats them the way you see it here. Not good for the afterlife. Nobody wants to be a stressed out spirit anyway. So respect the spirits and if you really want to help out, you can help spread the word by recommending this anime to others who haven’t it for some laughs and lessons in life. Lessons like cup noodles contain MSG so don’t go overdose yourself with it. What? You were expecting me to say something about family bonds, weren’t you?

I remember long ago how it was a funny that I used to have some sort of liking towards pony tail hairstyles. Not to the point that I was obsessed with it and turned into some sort of indecent stalker, but let’s say I pretty much prefer this type of hairstyle during my younger days. I don’t know what happened along the way because it doesn’t matter anymore and it is not like I have developed liking for any other hairstyles either. I guess things do change as you grow older. What made me remember of this little peculiar fixation of mine? If not for Ore, Twintails Ni Narimasu, this memory would certainly be long forgotten, sitting somewhere in the deep and dark corners of my brain.

So if you are one of those lucky people like the main character in this series who have a certain preferences for a particular hairstyle, twintails that is, you should be happy to know that this anime is plentiful and abundant to this hairstyle. In a way, it pays tribute and glorifies the pair of symmetrical side bundles. Or in the perspective of others, a cheap excuse for yet another silly season of perverted fetish. Yes, people. This show may split camps of those for twintails and those against. Because with the setting that twintails are the most powerful traits in the world and aliens from another world are trying to conquer it all for themselves, it makes Godzilla looking like a boring old monster.

Episode 1
Souji Mitsuka must really love the new high school he is in because coincidentally there lots of twintails. The most charming of them all is of course the student council president, Erina Shindou. And the not so charming one would be his childhood friend Aika Tsube. This guy loves twintails so much that he wants to form a twintail club and the teacher accidentally read it aloud in class… Oh dear. After school as Souji and Aika hang out at Souji’s mom’s cafe, a suspicious busty lady is watching them. Thouars wants Souji to put on a bracelet as it is an emergency. She makes it sound so lewd. Desperate enough that she will do anything for him! Even twintails? Well, more than that. He can grope her boobs. When she mentions twintails will be eliminated from the world, our concerned boy sits up. She puts the bracelet on him and whisks them away near some convention hall. There is a senior from their school who is unconscious. She lost her twintail and doesn’t even remember having such hairstyle. Oh the horror! Thouars explains aliens named Elemerians attack and stole her twintails trait by taking away her love for it. And here they are attacking all the women with twintails. I don’t know what the deal is for this Lizardgildy but he is infatuated with this twintail loli and wants to give all his dolls to her?! The last straw came when Erina is also abducted and had her twintails stolen. That does it. Thouars explains to him how to use the bracelet, Tail Gear which produces a combat suit to increase his physical abilities. Souji wastes no time in transforming. But wait! Why the heck is he transformed into a twintail loli???!!! Who cares about that trade off crap explanation? Oh what the heck. It’s the twintails look he loves, right? Lizardgildy orders his underlings to take out this loli, Tail Red. She is strong enough to hammer some of the underlings. Impressed by her strength, Lizardgildy wants her to hold a doll?! WTF?! Tail Red then materializes a sword to strike him. Still not down? Don’t worry. There’s more. She shoots some beam to paralyze him and then a flaming sword to cut and finish him once and for all. Lizardgildy knows he is dying and wants to touch her beautiful twintail. Just die! She picks up a strange little pyramid after his death. After she destroys the equipment, all the girls have their twintails returned. Erina is grateful for her bravery and all. She wonders if they will meet again. As long as you love twintails.

Episode 2
The Elemerians’ big boss, Draggildy wants to know which of his henchman is going out next but since they’re too busy arguing over their fetish to go with twintails, they will decide it through a fight. Giant jenga? Souji wakes up in his room and seeks an explanation. Elemerians are part of a race called Ultimegil and after taking over countless parallel worlds, they set their sights on this one. What they seek are trait powers called Elemera which they feed on. When you are obsessed in love with something or fetish, those are trait powers. It seems the most powerful ones are twintails. Thus Tail Gear is an anti-Elemerian weapon based on that trait power and the only thing that could defeat them. As for why he turns into a girl… It is Thouars fetish! Got a problem with that? Besides, he loves twintails, right? So it shouldn’t be that bad if he becomes one. As for the pyramid, it is the crystallization of Lizardgildy’s basic trait power. He likes girls holding dolls. Ugh. However Souji finds it odd because if he steals that trait power, the girl will no longer love dolls and isn’t ironic that there will be no more girls holding dolls? Thouars admits they are paradoxical creatures. Souji wants her to tell about herself. Her world was completely invaded. Although Ultimegil do not loot or kill, the stealing of trait powers that leave you bleak and without hope is most cruel. Souji thinks defeating them will return them to normal like what he did but she points out if it is not done within 24 hours, it will become permanent. Not wanting another world to fall prey to them, she decides to protect this one. And Souji is getting passionate about it too. Don’t want to forever lose his twintail love, eh?

What Thouars now need is a secret base under his house and she can finish it by tonight. All she needs is his mom, Miharu’s permission. Miharu heard everything and gives her approval. She knows that incident reported on TV is them and it is her dream to become a heroine. Well, was. Because she became a mother, she passed that dream to her unborn child who is now getting a chance to realize it. WTF. More depressing, his late father had the same dream too. Aika doesn’t want aunty to accept strangers but it seems Miharu is okay in letting Thouars sleep in the same bed with Souji! All she wants to see is her son get a girlfriend and although she would have preferred it with Aika (you denying it?) she sees Thouars has a good eye and doesn’t mind her getting horny and pushing down her son! This mother… Aika warns Souji to not let his guard down because Thouars certainly has not revealed all of herself. If she said her planet was completely annihilated, how did she acquire the twintail trait to make Tail Gear? Next day in class, Souji’s classmates are abuzz about Tail Red. It’s all over the internet, pictures and videos. Yeah. They love her! Even those who love big boobs have converted to like this loli! Souji tries to stop them but they think he wants to monopolize Tail Red for himself for they know he is the biggest twintail lover. Erina calls everyone to assemble at the gym. She rants about Tail Red and being saved by her. Yeah, she’s fawning over her… As the new heroine of this era, her family will do all they can to support her. Everyone gives their approval! Oh dear. Shortly, Draggildy makes an announcement throughout the world that he is after their trait power so do not resist and harm shall not come to them. This pisses off Souji because if love is taken away, it is not a peaceful world but a bleak and boring one. Thouars contacts Souji that Elemerians are spotted in a neighbourhood school. Time to transform and get into action. Turtlegildy has fetish for bloomers and he is going to get them when Tail Red arrives in a flash and takes him out! Holy cow! That was super fast! But now the big trouble comes. All the girls mob over Tail Red and start taking pictures and selfies! They really love her. A new superstar is born and is continue to make headlines around the world for the second day in a row.

Episode 3
Thouars shows them her underground base. Because there are millions of Ultimegil left, can Tail Red take on everyone by herself? Well, there is one more Tail Gear left although the suitable candidate is a violent person. Tail Red goes into action saving the world from Elemerians. This causes her reputation to become even more popular and there is even a stage play dedicated to her! It goes without saying there are lots of fansites about her. Thouars shows Aika a secret camera hidden in the toilet. Because Souji might have this idea of wondering if he can take off the outfit after transformation. Yeah. Curious about a girl’s body? After he transforms… He only touches and fawns over his twintail… Disappointed? Next day, Tail Red faces off with Foxgildy. However his trait power is ribbons as he ties her up and even materializes a very similar looking doll like her. Tail Red cannot do anything about it since her love for twintails means she cannot destroy those with such hairstyle even if it’s a fake. So this is her doom? Even creepier is this hallucination of Foxgildy playing with this doll in a bathroom scene! No wonder Tail Red is creeping out and paralyzed. Aika wonders if Thouars can do anything about this situation. When she hints about Aika’s power in Tail Gear on par with Souji, it occurred to Aika that the candidate she mentioned was referring to her! Thouars gives lots of fake excuses why she didn’t want to let her have this Tail Gear. From viewing her as a precious friend so as not to put her in danger to wanting to do filthy things with him during maintenance to only those with big busts can wear it as well as not wanting Souji to hate her if she lets Aika fight. Thouars wants Aika to promise to let her have her horny ways with Souji in exchange for the bracelet but Aika won’t give in and beats her up. It is time for Tail Blue to make her debut! She doesn’t care about ribbons or the fake doll and easily destroys them without hesitation. Using Turtlegildy’s pyramid which has gravity powers to pin him down before she destroys him with her spear. Even in that last moment Foxgildy could enjoy his hallucinations of ribbons… Might as well make it as nice death. When the reporters come rushing, Tail Blue takes Tail Red and fly away. But the next time this gets onto the news… Aika isn’t going to be too happy. Because it glorifies Tail Red’s bravery while mocking Tail Blue as a violent girl who may have an ulterior motive of wanting to stand out by imitating Tail Red. And how does Aika vent her anger? On Thouars, of course.

Episode 4
Souji is happy that his twintail club application has been approved. Erina is also glad that Tail Red has got a partner to fight with and someone to support in battles. With so many Ultimegil defeated, Draggildy wants only to bravest to head into battle. Swangildy offers to be next but he must pass a test. I am not sure about Draggildy taking his laptop and examining his nurse eroge of some route. Anyway he lost and this means Draggildy himself will head into battle. Tail Red is given the sneak attack by Draggildy who claims he is the ultimate twintail lover in the universe. As they fight, Tail Red could sense he has this skilled twintail swordsmanship (WTF?!). He also notices Tail Blue and although she reminds him of the last person he fought in the previous world, the only difference is their boob size. He warns them that wearing Tail Gear like this would bring about the end of the world, just like the last. Because everybody becomes infatuated with it and this twintail trait that Ultimegil is looking for took control over the world. It is like the twintails start out as goddess of saviour but without realizing it turn into a goddess of destruction. This makes Tail Blue wonder why Thouars let them continue fighting if she knew the same thing was going to happen. Draggildy is telling them because he could feel Tail Red’s love for twintails and didn’t want to fight with any dirty tricks. This way they won’t fall into despair when they learn everything when their world is in ruin. Just when Tail Red is about to end all the talking and do some butt kicking, here comes the mysterious Masked Twintail (Thouars actually) interrupting and prolonging the talk…

She explains about Ultimegil’s real goal is not looking for the ultimate twintails to steal their trait power but to make the one with the strongest twintail trait their enemy. As this method was done in the previous world, Thouars used this leaked technology to develop Tail Gear to fight them back without realizing she has been used. Thouars was that person who fought against them but since she gave away her twintail trait, the reason they cannot sense her. Because she cannot stand to see people losing the twintail trait till there were none left in her world, she too casted away her own twintail and used them as core to build another Tail Gear. Tail Blue is sorry for doubting her. But this doesn’t change the fact that with double twintails, the effect will spread twice as fast in this world. To Tail Red, as long as you have hair long enough to tie up on both sides, twintails can be made. So enough of the chatter and let’s fight! Tail Blue handles the small fries while Tail Red fights Draggildy. Tail Red is able to wound his back so Draggildy shows his love for twintails by putting it on the line. Yup, this guy has got long beautiful twintails too! In the end, Draggildy who thought he had cornered Tail Red is taken by surprise when she has another sword. They’re not twintails for nothing. He is cut in half and feels honoured to be defeated by the ultimate twintail. He hopes they will meet again one day. As long as you love twintails.

Episode 5
Mikoto Sakuragawa who is Erina’s personal maid, becomes Souji and Aika’s new homeroom assistant teacher. If that isn’t bad enough, Thouars is a transfer student in their class! Asking about Mikoto’s move as assistant teacher, she finds that with all the strange people and happenings around, she became one to help protect the school. Also, she is the twintail club’s advisor. Erina takes a look around their clubroom and asks Souji’s about his love for twintail. He thinks it’s a test to see how deep his love for it. She also notices his bracelet and touches it although nothing happened. She reminds him that although the nation is griped in Tail Red fever, he shouldn’t wear such fancy accessories to school. Meanwhile those Ultimegil guys are pondering their next move. Sparrowgildy is glad that the ultimate Ultimegil warriors are here, Krakegildy and Leviagildy. But they’re arguing about small and big boobs! They have sent their subordinates to Earth to see who is more worthy. There is also word that Darkgrasper, the subordinate directly under their boss will be coming. Buffalogildy attacks a supermarket where Erina and Mikoto are shopping. Thankfully here come the twintail heroines. Because Buffalogildy has penchant for big boobs, this pisses off Tail Blue as she easily fights and defeats him. He feels sad to be defeated by a flat chest… Because the pyramid Buffalogildy contains some hybrid gear as well as big boobs trait, Aika is begging Thouars to make a new bracelet for her. Thouars teases her to apologize and she actually did! On her knees! Now this is getting creepy. That desperate, huh? Once it is done, happy Aika tests it out but nothing happens. Maybe it is because she lacks boobs so she cannot add them to her trait? How sad… Dashed dreams. She can’t even have big boobs when she transforms. Souji deduces that it isn’t the bracelet but more of her heart that is rejecting other bracelets and preventing her transformation.

Lightning strikes the same place twice. Because yet again at the same supermarket spot, Crabgildy attacks Erina and Mikoto. Crabgildy has penchant for necks. Just like history repeating itself, the twintail heroines arrive. But Tail Blue has a hard time fighting him since he has this great ability to whisk behind your back. How else could he admire those delicious napes? Tail Red takes Erina to safety. Erina knew she would come to rescue her again and knows she is Souji. Tail Red tries to dismiss it but Erina can tell by the genuine bracelet. This is not a replica. With the secret out of the bag, Tail Red reverts back to Souji and he thinks of letting her try the new Tail Gear because she is often targeted by Ultimegil. Souji believes she can transform as her love for twintails is great. And Erina transforms into a busty and curvaceous Tail Yellow! Jealous Aika wants to switch right now! But since Erina is so happy that this has been her dream to become a hero of justice, I guess Aika lets her have it. Meanwhile all the Elemerians gather to meet the mysterious Darkgrasper whom they have never seen. They are shocked to see her as a human girl.

Episode 6
With stronger armour and arsenal, Tail Yellow is going to teach Crabgildy a lesson. However she only fires blanks. It is Tail Blue who finishes him. Krakegildy and Leviagildy are lamenting their subordinates’ defeat. Because Darkgrasper has been staying silent, they fear and believe she will eliminate everyone in a unit that fails. It is time to put away boob size difference and get rid of the twintail menace first. In the clubroom, Erina returns Tail Gear to Souji and feels she has no right to fight alongside him. She reveals she actually hates twintails. Shock! She only wears it because her mother insisted it and this trait is enshrined in the family’s doctrine (WTF?!). But Souji doesn’t think she really hates them. He asks the reason she loves heroes so much. It is perhaps the same as his love for twintails. He isn’t actually fighting to protect the world but just twintails. In a way, that also made him help protect the world. Erina also wants to protect the girl. But how can she do it if she can’t manifest her twintail power? Thouars suggests a special training. A couple of Elemerians are detected so Aika believes she can handle them by herself. Tail Blue encounters Krakegildy and Leviagildy. Krakegildy admires her flat chest (taboo word for her) but since he is fighting for the fate of his subordinates, he will defeat her with his full strength. And the worst nightmare for Tail Blue: Tentacles!!! OMG! Tentacle rape scene?

I’m sure Tail Red is trying to motivate her with lots of words to show her true self but still, you need action as damning proof. Thouars suggests she throw a huge rock at her. When the rock lands, Erina blasts and destroys it to smithereens. Tail Red points out the twintail power she felt in her heart. It dawned to her that everyone may have been looking at Erina as a cute pet because of her role as student council president. Everyone could be probably looking at Tail Red the same way. Erina is happy-cum-embarrassed. Then it is like her inner kinky fetish awakened. Calling Tail Red her master, she wants more of herself to be seen. She starts firing all her arsenal. I’m not sure if she is turning into some exhibitionist since she drops her armour after firing her weapon. They get an emergency call from Tail Blue. But when they arrive on scene, they see her violently and furiously beating the Elemerians up. Ironically Leviagildy the big boobs lover bear the brunt and got destroyed. She has used up too much energy and collapses. Flashback reveals they were gloating about small boobs and this riled her up and broke free of their tentacles. Krakegildy wants revenge and ties up Tail Red. Thus it is Tail Yellow’s debut to show what she’s got. Yeah. She’s going to show everything! Fire and strip! But her dropped armour soon combines into a giant cannon that not only paralyzes Krakegildy but charges Tail Yellows flying kick and creates a giant hole in his chest. How can it be flat when there is none! Tail Red is impressed and believes that this is proof she doesn’t hate twintails. After she collapses from using too much power, Darkgrasper appears before them. She congratulates them on their victory. At first glance, she looks like she might be wearing Tail Gear but it is the tenacious armour, Glass Gear powered by her love for glasses. She made it in admiration for Thouars. She is here to pick up Thouars because she wants her to join their side.

Episode 7
Darkgrasper mistakes Tail Red to be Thouars because she is wearing her armour. Through a communicator, Thouars has Tail Red repeat after her so as not to raise suspicions. I doubt it… Because Darkgrasper is puzzled about her missing boobs and is being told they disappeared in between dimensions while fighting Ultimegil! Darkgrasper’s ranting about small boobs feel like insults. I wonder how long Tail Blue can hold it in. Darkgrasper wants her email address but Thouars won’t give it to her. Darkgrasper says she didn’t become the Ultimegil’s general to become enemies but to bring her back. Therefore she’ll never give up. Oh, her address is the same as it used to be. While the Elemerians are watching videos of the Twintails, Darkgrasper appears to announce they are now under her command. Some do not believe a human girl is fit to be their commander. One attacks but is swiftly cut up by her dark scythe, Darkness Glaive. Se forces everyone to take her address. Once she retires to her room, she starts curling up and shivering about everyone’s weird fetishes. Mega Neptune Mk II AKA Megane made some QR scan codes to help her out and even advises her to be nice since those guys aren’t used to girls. At the clubroom, Souji is infatuated to see a twintail idol in glasses debuting, Anko Iisuna. Looks familiar? But an Elemerian is detected on the south island so as our gang heads there, they are greeted by Darkgrasper’s lips loving subordinate, Papilongildy. As usual they fight and Tail Yellow goes berserk with her fire and strip method till he is destroyed. Too bad they can’t interrogate a dead bug now as they realize that this might be just a setup by Darkgrasper to measure Tail Yellow’s powers.

Of course you would have guessed Anko is Darkgrasper (who is also the top idol in 20 different worlds) and after another recording session, she remembers her producer Kerberosgildy who is a braid lover wanted her to wear it even if it means treason. He fears that twintails are spreading so much that there won’t be anywhere left for braids. However Darkgrasper told him her goal is to spread glasses and twintails and since it has come down to this, they fight. No prizes to guess who won. When Erina sees Aika beating up Thouars, she thinks they are very close and wants to be hit too! Am I thinking what her awakening is coming to? Since she won’t, she turns to Souji for it. He touches her face but she wants to be hit harder! Thouars has an idea what is going on and whispers to the girls about Souji being shy about touching women. Even Miharu approves of whatever they’re doing! Thouars suggestion to cure Souji is to find him the finest porn magazines! And it is just too damn weird to see the student council president asking everyone in school if they know anything about porn!!!!!!!! OMG!!! WTF???!!! Odd at first but soon the guys let up in their kinky fetishes… She’s really taking those notes down. Thouars reasoning: It will help increase the twintails team spirit. That’s why she is working hard despite her shame. Meanwhile Erina’s mother, Emu (no, she’s not a bird) feels her daughter has been neglecting her practice lately. It is time to arrange a boy for her to meet.

Episode 8
Owlgildy finds a piece of old ‘literature’ from Anko about glasses and breasts. It really tears him up. Erina is having sleepless nights after trying to research porn. Those bags under her eyes may just give the wrong idea… Mikoto wants Souji to tail Erina from a distance and keep watch since Erina intends to buy a porn magazine together. Why not her? She has a marriage proposal to sabotage. She makes him sign a contract. After Souji sees Erina entering the adult section of a bookstore, he sees Owlgildy distributing literature. Upon seeing Erina in the bookstore, he becomes impressed. Of course this means it is time for Tail Red to get into action and beat the crap out of him. Owlgildy mentions he is an old soldier and ones who hold a rare trait. He loves literature. It is one of the many traits dying out in this world. He is sad that books today have become so manga-like and nothing but girls in skimpy clothes. But Tail Red isn’t swayed. Just like her love for twintails, she chides him off as he isn’t the one who will decide what literature is and what’s not. Twintails are her literature! Before Owlgildy succumbs to his fate, he is appalled to learn that Erina is buying a porn magazine. He cannot believe such a knowledgeable girl is doing so. His last dying words: It is not him who is dead. Literature is! Once Erina is out, it seems she did not buy any. Why? Simple. You can’t buy them until you are 18 years old! Erina feels sad she cannot do anything to repay them but Souji says they have already accepted her as their comrade and in the event if she still feels there is a gap between them, always remember that twintails are what will always bring them together. To commemorate this friendship, Thouars gives each one a handphone. That night, Emu calls Erina for a talk. The next day, Souji becomes so devastated to see the ‘new’ Erina that he fell on his knees proclaiming that he had failed to protect her twintails!!! WTF???!!! Seems Erina has let loose her twintails hairstyle.

As Mikoto explains, this is Erina’s way to show her defiance to her mom who is also this school’s chairwoman. Although the marriage proposal is resolved, it is more about Emu finding out about her porn search. In fact, she actually approved it! So what’s the deal? As Erina is busy with several activities, she believes her life is in disorder and has arranged a new marriage proposal. Mikoto brings Souji to the office where mother and daughter and discussing this. At first Souji is stunned by the awesome twintails of Emu. Then he barges in to argue and stand on Erina’s behalf. He claims he knows her twintails better than her! He believes despite their disagreement, Erina shouldn’t take it out on her twintails. He also has seen how much Erina has grown and doing important things right now. As the way things are going right now, she might neglect her work and such. He believes she will find these experiences irreplaceable in her future. Emu is impressed that such a gentleman still exists. He wants Erina to marry him! Either him or her earlier marriage proposal. With Erina having nothing against it. The case is solved. Outside, Mitsuka has successfully kept Thouars from intervening because the latter is furious claiming Souji’s virginity belongs to her! What about Aika? Is she okay with this? Well, she thinks Erina is a nice person and the first one to praise Tail Blue. So it’s okay. Really? So why run away like a tsundere? I’m not sure what Darkgrasper is having withdrawal symptoms over Thouars so Megane lets her see an album filled with her pictures. Darkgrasper is appalled that even in all her photos, her twintails are missing. Is this the power when one losses the twintail trait? Then it hit her. Tail Red is not Thouars but that suspicious masked person behind. Now why didn’t she think about it before? Souji notices glasses are gaining popularity. He also notices Anko emphasising it more than herself. Then it hit him. Anko is Darkgrasper! Now why didn’t he think about it before? By spreading the glasses trait as an idol, she is helping Ultimegil’s world conquest move forward.

Episode 9
Darkgrasper thinks Tail Red stole Thouars’ twintail traits because she is obsessed with her. She’ll pay… Souji and the girls are looking over Anko’s goods. Erina discovers a hidden message in the weird lyrics of one of her songs. It reads out as “I love you, Thouars”. They deduce this is a declaration of war and that her concert that she will be holding means taking her fans hostage and putting glasses on them. As they head down to the hall, they are surprised Darkgrasper is waiting for them. So who is that performing on stage? It’s just hologram. Their concerns are unfounded when it is learnt Darkgrasper is just holding her concert for her dear fans she loves so much. Nothing sinister behind it. But Darkgrasper blames Tail Red for stealing Thouars from her. The telltale sign was Tail Red pretending to be Thouars then. Although the trio cooperate to fight her, they are still no match. Darkgrasper is going to put on special glasses on Tail Red that she can never take off. It will blur her love for twintails. That’s like living hell! Before she could, here comes Thouars. She tells the truth that she willingly gave them her powers and thus her twintails. However Darkgrasper sees it as they have brainwashed her. No choice, Thouars will have to fight her. How? By hugging her. At least this got her defence down. Darkgrasper may have twisted love but who’d expect Thouars to have something this twisted too as she invites her to grope he boobs! Then again, we know she is that twisted. Seeing that Thouars doesn’t need any more rescuing, Darkgrasper will push forward her plan of putting glasses on all human beings. She explains her love for glasses and how it is disappearing in this world (because everyone is wearing contacts). She joined Ultimegil under a condition that glasses trait will not be taken away. So in all the worlds, other traits are stolen and glasses are the only ones left. This is how she protects them. Her ultimate goal is to make Thouars wear these specially made glasses. Giving you the creeps, eh?

Tail Red’s love for twintails is what she needs to protect this world. Darkgrasper still isn’t convinced and sends the trio into another dimension where they can live out their fantasies. Thouars orders her to bring them back and threatens she will start to hate her. She is not swayed because she will make her love her no matter what. Souji is in a dream. A dream come true because Aika and Erina love him! And he got his harem of twintails! However when Thouars is seen willing to tie a twintail for him, that is when he realizes all this is fake. Thouars can never put on twintails no matter how much she wants to. With great determination, Souji bursts out from the dream and back into reality. Tail Red is furious. In a world with darkness and fake twintails, her twintails are the light! The trio combine their armour into one big weapon to blast away Darkgrasper before she could even react. Wait a minute. Only her clothes get blown away? Her hair and glasses still intact? Truly behold the power of twintails and glasses. Megane comes to pick her up and the girls are surprised this robot is very polite. Before it’s time to go, Darkgrasper kisses Tail Red! Gasp! First kiss stolen by the most unlikely person! She gives her email address and says her goodbye to Thouars. Looks like Tail Red stole her heart. Heh. The worst part is that she makes it look like Thouars is the one who got dumped.

Episode 10
Spidergildy returns from some battle and wants to put his skills to the test by fighting the twintail trio. Darkgrasper asks if he has ever kissed before. She causes a racket when she reveals she has kissed Tail Red. You should see her room filled with Tail Red merchandise! It’s like she turned into a whole new level as a stalker. Aika must be wondering about Souji’s first kiss. He doesn’t think that yuri kiss counts because they’re girls and it’s some form of greeting. Really? The trio are called into action when Spidergildy seems like terrorizing an all-girls’ school. Actually he has trap fetish and is watching a pair of traps taking out their romance! Because of this trait, Tail Blue wants to handle this alone. Unfortunately Spidergildy thinks Tail Blue is a trap! That flatness… Beast mode unleashed! Although with the combined might, in the end, Tail Red is defeated, Spidergildy didn’t finish them off and retreats. Is everything okay? The start of strange things… Firstly, Souji wakes up finding himself transformed as Tail Red. Could it be he unconsciously transformed during his sleep? And then Erina has a dog collar and leash on her neck! She wants Souji to take her for a walk! Oddly, she could take dog orders from anybody so Thouars is having fun ordering her around. And the strangest of them all is Souji complimenting Aika’s lips instead of her twintail! Oh my! Could it be that he has finally started to show interest in her as a girl? Yeah. Crazy, right? Spidergildy heard that his subordinate, Fleagildy has gone down alone to defeat the twintail trio because there are rumours circulating that Spidergildy ran away when he didn’t finish them. This is to clear his name.

Miharu knows what is happening and urges Aika to push forward with her determination on the line. She suggests making a bet with Souji during their next fight. And so we see Tail Blue furiously stepping on Fleagildy because as usual, that taboo word of flat… Even better for Fleagildy who loves legs and to be stepped on. Harder, please! It is not so surprising that she finished him off without even using a single ounce of her power. News of his defeat reaches Spidergildy and he feels sad and wrong about his decision. He fled that time was because he saw the true power of twintails and needed time to make special preparations. Now he regrets that and is thinking of using that. Footage of Aika’s monstrous beating of Fleagildy is all over TV and as usual they mock if she is human or beast. Riles you up, eh? Except for Thouars who is laughing her ass off like as though this is Comedy Central. Even Mikoto doesn’t want Erina to be close to her for fear she might get influenced! Another strange dream for Souji. Darkgrasper is about to kiss him. He stops her in time when he notices Tail Red watching him. She runs away as he desperately tries to explain himself. Wait a minute. Doesn’t it feel like he is running away from himself? When Aika goes to wake him up, she thinks he unconsciously transformed again. But who the heck is this girl?! Souji claims to be him but it looks like Tail Red but all grown up and busty!

Episode 11
Nobody is panicking now that Souji is a girl. It’s like they’re already accepting him to stay as one. Thouars gets her usual punishment when she teases Aika that Souji has bigger boobs even in girl form. Now there is the problem of going to toilet. Souji doesn’t know how to! Erina wants to go with him and drinks Thouars’ laxative. Too late. Aika brings Souji along. Watching another video on Anko’s performance, they think she is planning on another operation to take Souji’s lips again. Time to get into action with another Elemerian detected. Wormgildy who is Spidergildy’s disciple also has a trap trait. While his master is in training to obtain a special power, he is here to show how powerful he is. Since Aika doesn’t like slimy tentacle stuffs, she has to sit this one out while Tail Red fights him alone (Tail Yellow is evacuating others). However as Darkgrasper watches, she feels Tail Red isn’t fighting like her usual. In fact, she is struggling a lot. It took Tail Blue to finish off Wormgildy. Later as Tail Red is brooding by herself, Darkgrasper visits her and conveys her disappointment. Back home, Aika helps Souji bath. Souji acts like it is the end of the world when Aika releases her twintails. You need to properly care for your hair, right? Don’t want those twintails to just pop off. It is that feeling of losing something when Souji unties her hair for the first time. Aika dries her hair as she reminds her that Tail Gear doesn’t protect their twintails in normal form. Souji laments he doesn’t know much about twintails since she conveniently gets it only when transformed. Thouars gives Souji her pair of hair clips that she used to wear when she had twintails. The Elemerians are sad Wormgildy is no more (are they all trap fetish?!) so Snailgildy goes down to challenge Tail Red and avenge Wormgildy whom he loves more than anyone else. Tail Red is still weak and in fact weaker than before. It took Tail Blue and Tail Yellow to defeat him. Although Snailgildy’s shell saved him from the devastating attack, it is only a matter of time it will crack. Before he dies, he warns them about Spidergildy undergoing some training to obtain a special power and the next fight will be their last. Tail Red is depressed that she is weaker than before. She feels she has been paying more attention to girls than twintails. She screams out loud she has betrayed twintails. Just sad… Spidergildy has finished his training. He sheds his skin for a slicker look. A new look means a new name, Arachnegildy. He takes his trap blade (WTF?!) and prepares for battle.

Episode 12
Gloomy Souji girl… Can’t even tie a decent twintail. She really thinks twintails have abandoned her but of course Aika gives her a reality check that this is her first time doing it and thus not perfect. No matter how deep his love for twintails is, he still needs experience. The girls help teach Souji how to tie her hair. Arachnegildy sees Darkgrasper to state his intention to fight Tail Red. Darkgrasper gives the green light to even kill her since she is no longer fit to be her future wife. And so Arachnegildy descends on our world using some tornado to turn men into twintail girls! The horror! Aika and Erina head into action and don’t want to bother Souji (who is trying hard tying his twintail). They think they are good enough to handle this spider dude but they’re wrong. When Souji realizes the girls nowhere around, it dawned to her what is happening. She quickly rushes down to the scene. Thouars wanted to stop her but Miharu allows Souji to go into battle because she believes in her. Just before Tail Blue and Tail Yellow lose, here comes Tail Red to save the day. However Arachnegildy could not sense any love within her and can easily strike her down. True enough that happens. In that split second, Souji experiences some out-of-body experience and in some plain, he meets his inner twintail god! He is told that twintails didn’t abandon him but rather he has abandoned himself. He has merely lost sight of his own love and felt guilty about accepting the warmth of the girls. It made his true love for twintails waver. Then there’s some talk about true love and looking for false absolutes isn’t true strength. It banishes all hesitation in Souji. Now he is ready to fight.

Back in reality, Arachnegildy could feel the sudden change in Tail Red. It’s like she changed in that split second. Those hair clips from Thouars start to shine and power her up. This allows her to wield 2 swords and be even more agile than the enemy. She can even transform into different types of twintail mode that gives him a different set of powers, although it is only for a limited time. But that is enough for him to slash Arachnegildy who in his last words has seen the true meaning of twintails and that Tail Red’s is the ultimate! Yeah, whatever. The world is saved and even happier ending as Souji returns to a normal guy. As for Darkgrasper, she has to temporary say goodbye to her love for now because as the big boss instructed, they have to go quell some rebels. This means, Ultimegil will leave Earth to another dimension. And so, normal and peaceful days lie ahead for Souji and his girls so much so his mom supports him either way (picking someone or harem route). But why is Thouars still hanging around now that the Elemerian threat is gone? Well, she had something to do. Her soul is connected to Souji and now she wants to connect their bodies! Oh no you don’t. Even with the threat over, our twintail heroes still want to keep Tail Gear on as proof of their love.

Have The World By The (Twin)Tail!
Is this really the end? Till the next time. Like we care. Whoever that menacing rebel Darkgrasper is supposed to face off sounds interesting but if has got nothing to do with the twintail story, then I suppose it isn’t relevant anyhow. Even other stuffs like the supposed engagement between Souji and Erina remains a mystery because it is not like we hear Souji really accepting or refusing it. Notwithstanding all that, for the time being, Earth is safe from the danger of fetish feeding Elemerians and more importantly the twintails of the world have been protected! I suppose this season itself is enough of all the twintails to last a lifetime. Either you get sick of it (those who aren’t into twintails) or you will crave for more. Well, it is a good thing that I didn’t convert into one. Phew.

When you watch this show, you shouldn’t be taking things seriously. In fact, you shouldn’t at all. So if you are watching this with anticipation that this series will be some funny comedy (may not be the best but it still is) and without any high expectations, then you are safe from the pangs of disappointment. I mean, we should already get the hint from the start that the power of twintails is the most powerful trait of all and the only one that can be used to fight against Ultimegil. Ridiculous as it sounds, right? Even more preposterous that every Elemerian encountered, they have some sort of fetish only peculiar to humans. Just funny…

And speaking of fetish, there are quite a number of them here in addition to the twintail mania. It feels like there is some sort of hidden meaning to tell us that such fetishes are personal. I know they want to worship twintails but at the same time they don’t want to leave out other twisted fetishes like common ones such as boobs and not so common ones like ribbons. It goes to show that humans are really the most twisted creatures when it comes to this department and they subtly illustrate this via different Elemerians. It is even funnier to think that such perverted and horny aliens exist throughout the galaxy and parallel worlds! Now do you understand why old Hollywood monster movies always have aliens, creatures and other beasts coveting our women?

The silliest fact is about just how the simple twintail hairstyle can be the difference in giving you power or the most desired thing. Take for example Elemerians. They love twintails so much. I know there is a perfect way without resorting to Tail Gear to defeat those menace: Untie your twintails and let your hair down! Or at least try put on a different hairstyle. It’s so easy, right? Heck, even if you untie one side and leave the other alone, the hairstyle is no longer considered twintail and thus no twintail power, right? And besides, why can’t Thouars just tie her hair for the twintail effect? Silly isn’t it if you consider how easy it is to tie it up (aside from tying it up neatly and beautifully). So why can’t she not get her twintails back again? I don’t understand. Yeah. Twintails. Such a deep and profound subject not to be taken lightly and only those who care enough will understand the mystery behind it. And I always thought that twintails = tsundere. Typical stereotype on twintails…

Heck, I guess they’re trying to go all out in this being a funny show so much so that the next episode preview feels like the funniest segments. In some previews, we hear sexual innuendoes and subtexts (from you know who) and even breaking the fourth wall about not even enough time to do the real preview and later on, rebuking other random characters to be in this segment and narrating it. Yeah. Even Elemerians get a chance. All is fair, no?

Don’t expect much from the character development because they’re typically the same from day one. Souji’s unwavering love for twintails can either be considered amazing obsession or just plain ridiculous. Well, someone’s fetish isn’t to be taken lightly off. One man’s meat is another man’s poison. Then there is brute Aika who is only remembered for 2 things: Her violent manner and her desperation for boobs. Feels like a running joke, huh? No matter what she does, the public will always view Tail Blue with scorn but shower Tail Red with lots of love. Even though they both have twintails… I guess this shows the world isn’t such a twintail mania after all. And you can’t mention how flat she is or else she becomes scarier than the devil. Erina feels like still waters run deep because ever since she became Tail Yellow, it’s like another fetish deep inside her awakens. It is just strange to see a model student council president going around interviewing about porn and then wanted to be treated like a dog. Blame the strict family upbringing? And what kind of screwed up family would have twintails as a must in their family creed?! All Mikoto can do is to watch over her… Mind boggling fact that Emu accepts her daughter’s porn fascination but not her seemingly ‘disorderly’ life (which hasn’t exactly happened)? How screwed up is that?

Thouars feel like the joker of the group despite being the scientist and inventor of the pack. Her attitude is already one kind. Always having horny thoughts for Souji and the fact that she loves teasing Aika and bearing the brunt of her raw power have some sort become a running joke of the series. Almost in every episode, Aika takes out her frustrations on this busty lady by giving her some sort of submission or noogie. Whether it is Thouars’ fault in instigating or fanning the fire (which is the cases in many instances), she always gets it. I guess she never learns. Even there was one time she created a robot for Aika to whack but it was broken so easily that I guess it feels it is better to get herself whacked than making multiple of those punching bags. There are things that technology cannot even solve. Darkgrasper feels like she has a hidden personality. Before her Ultimegil subordinates and our heroines, she puts up this commanding presence that is truly worthy of a villainess. However in her own room, she becomes like some sort of nervous breakdown girl wearing her jersey and only Megane as her comfort. And she has this odd request to get email addresses. It’s like she is desperate to have friends. I think she is. Yeah well, nobody is perfect. Come to think of it, now that is gone, what will the fans of Anko do? Won’t they find her ‘disappearance’ mind boggling? Oh, who cares?

This series almost became a harem. In fact, is it a closet harem? Because we can see many of the main girls in the series taking a liking for Souji. We already have Aika as the typical childhood friend and tsundere. Then we have the perverted Thouars who is gunning for his virginity. But this might be just lust instead of true love. Then there is the suspicious case of Erina who seems to have her masochistic side awakening and thus it might be because nobody ‘hits’ her like Souji/Tail Red does. Finally I am not sure if this counts but what the heck anyway since Darkgrasper is now infatuated with Tail Red. Even though it just signals yuri but they’re the same person, right? Oh yeah. What kind of anime where you can get hints of romance of harem, trap and yuri all in one? And since Souji can turn into a twintail loli, does this count as a girl of his harem? Because I am sure that he will pick Tail Red first since who can provide first class twintail caressing to himself by himself? I don’t want to rule out Mikoto as well because there are a couple of scenes that hints to us that she is desperately trying to hook up with someone. When she first became the assistant teacher, she was handing out marriage forms to those with older brothers or a single father! Then there was this one time she tried to slip a marriage form to Souji while he was signing a contract or when she was teaching him to tie her hair.

There are a few moments of fanservice too but it isn’t that great so as to take your attention away from the twintail. I mean, it would do this series a great disservice if the fanservice element is more attractive than the twintail. From the way the design of the power suits to a handful of bath scenes as well as Tail Yellow’s odd power up manner of stripping her armour like as though she could be getting orgasmic anytime and not to mention Thouars huge boobs too. What a great satisfying dish with twintails as the main course and fanservice as toppings and desserts.

Action wise, because we have cute girls in power suits that look nearly as skimpy, I suppose this is a side distraction for us in addition to the twintails. I mean, it would be a waste not to see the girls go in action when you have power suits that give you awesome powers. The moves seem okay at first but they are not very varied and you’ll be noticing the trio using the same finishing moves over and over again to finish off the Elemerians. Like Tail Red’s flaming sword, Tail Blue’s water spear and the ultimate flying kick charged up by her armour from Tail Yellow. I suppose why change when this sure-win tactic works. Always. Even funnier how some Elemerians only get a handful of seconds of screen time before being easily destroyed. No justice. Heck, should there be for them? Especially when they are out to get our twintails?! Better meet your doom quick. Otherwise, how will there be enough time to showcase so many Gildy family monsters and make them the ‘monster of the week’?

Drawing and art style of course have our girls cute in twintails. Heck, everyone in twintails must be cute and beautiful! Although some of the characters sometimes have this silly look on their face especially Erina (because she is innocent and all, right?) and Thouars (because she is a big pervert, right?). But sometimes I can’t help feel that the twintail girls resemble other twintail characters like Erina have this uncanny resemblance to Seitokai Yakuindomo’s Suzu. Initially, I thought when Aika first transformed into Tail Blue, she looked like Hatsune Miku! Then there is Tail Red looking like a cross between Hidan No Aria’s Aria and Date A Live’s Kotori. I don’t know, looking at Anko somehow reminds me of Date A Live’s Kurumi. Also, the power suits that the twintail trio wear somewhat reminds me of the ones in Vividred Operation. Colourful and powerful. Senki Zesshou Symphogear also comes to mind but I am more inclined to think of Vividred Operation. They could have added more twintail characters and to the colour group. Tail Green, Tail Brown, Tail Orange, Tail Purple, Tail White and yeah, Tail Black. I also noticed that in the later episodes, animation quality drops a bit. If you look closer, you can see the character designs having less details and a bit simpler. They thought we would be fixated on the twintails on won’t notice?

As for the Elemerians, I suppose their designs are enough for me to consider that they are worthy to be ‘monster of the week’ for sentai programmes. I suppose that every sentai show past and present, when you design monsters, you will end up designing one that looks like a certain animal. So why not have the aliens, the Gildy family in particular here to follow traits of certain animals and named it after them? Some of the leader type Elemerians like Draggildy, Spidergildy, Krakegildy and Leviagildy have designs that make them look ferocious and thus cool in this sense. Some are just comical like Wormgildy. Other low level Elemerians in the background feels like free for all. Because you can’t make head or tail on what kind of animal or monster they are and could be mash ups of something. Heck, I though one of them looked like Jar Jar Binks! Serious! What kind of animal is he based on anyway? Speaking of which, what kind of animal is Draggildy? Hmm… A drag… That means… Oh God…

Voice acting feels pretty decent with some I recognized like Cho as Sparrowgildy, Yukari Tamura as Megane (although something feels like a mismatch for her squeaky cute voice as an armoured robot) and Rie Kugimiya making a small cameo as one of the twintail girls. If there is this hint of familiarity behind Wormgildy’s ‘squeaky gay’ voice, like I have heard it somewhere before, it took me a while to remember this was Galaxy Angel’s Normad (Mika Kanai). Unfortunately I did not for Youko Hikasa who was behind Darkgrasper/Anko and Kikuko Inoue as Emu. The rest of the casts include Nobunaga Shimazaki as Souji (Kaito in Ano Natsu De Matteru), Sumire Uesaka as Tail Red (Tamaki in GJ-Bu), Yuka Aisaka as Aika/Tail Blue (Muse in Amagi Brilliant Park), Chinatsu Akasaki as Erina/Tail Yellow (Maki in Love Lab), Maaya Uchida as Thouars (Rikka in Chuunibyou Demo Koi Ga Shitai), Mao as Mikoto (Kazumi in Gokukoku No Brynhilder), Hiromi Igarashi as Miharu (Hina in Papa No Iu Koto Wo Kikinasai), Shou Hayami as Spidergildy/Arachnegildy (Tokiomi in Fate/Zero) and Tetsu Inada as Draggildy (Ioryogi in Kobato). The opening theme is Gimme Revolution by Maaya Uchida while the ending theme is Tail On Twin Tails by the twintail trio. Both are lively and rock based to give you that mood to get into the twintail action.

I don’t know in the future if there are any more animes that will be produced based on certain fetish. I am sure this isn’t the first one as there are many animes in the past having their themes on a certain fetish but weren’t as ‘profound’ as this one. Really. So you watch this anime only for the laughs or you are one of those deviants who really love the twintails. Because saving and protecting the world from evil aliens with similar strange fetishes is something we can be proud of even though it is just a sick delusion. Now if only they made an anime for those with fetish for maids… SOMEBODY MAKE THAT RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!

Himegoto

June 5, 2015

People these days are getting androgynous enough that you can’t really tell whether they are male or female. The lines between what looks like a boy and girl from the outside is now blurred so much that it just blows away your traditional perspective of what a boy and a girl are supposed to be. Yeah well, we can thank anime for screwing our minds on that. Throughout the history of anime shows, there has been countless cross-dressers and of course, traps. But has there been an anime whereby more than half of the characters are traps? Holy cow!!! Say what?! Technically it is so because Himegoto may be a short anime lasting only 4 minutes each and doesn’t have a wide range of characters, therefore you can say half of them are traps. So if you really have trap fetish, you should watch this show. Me? I’m here to see how this very effeminate guy is forced to become the dog of certain unscrupulous people taking advantage of his cross-dressing ways. There is no end to the shame… It’s a funny show, by the way so don’t go calling me a black hearted sadist.

Episode 1
A couple of guys are cornering Hime Arikawa. What kind of heartless bastards would do such a thing to a maid?! One of them wants to toy around with Hime despite knowing he is a guy! HOLY SH*T! Even better because he is a cross-dresser?! There are really some sick people in this world. Fortunately Hime is saved by the Shimoshina High School student council trio of 18-kin, Unko and Albertina II AKA Bell. Don’t mess with these girls. The trio also find how cute Hime is and make him part of the student council. Because it is their policy to make cute girls part of the body. Imagine their surprise when Hime says he is a guy. At first they don’t believe but after flipping up his skirt. Oh, the horror! Hime explains he was forced to wear this by those guys and was going to be sold off thanks to his parents’ debts. Yup, they travel round the world and rack up the debts in Hime’s name. What kind of parents are they?! 18-kin says the student council will pay off his debts and has the money to show for it! But in exchange, he must live the rest of his life as a cross-dresser in this school and serve as the student council’s dog. Oh God. Doesn’t this feel much worse than being sold off? So Hime is introduced to the school. No reaction? And they don’t hesitate to flip up his skirt to show he is a boy. Some think he is cute! There really are sick people in this world…

Episode 2
Hime returns home to be hugged by his sister, Kaguya. Actually, Kaguya is his brother! Oh sh*t! Another cross-dresser?! He is so happy big brother has ‘joined the club’. In school, Hime’s old friend, Yuuma Tadokoro teases him for cross-dressing. He even brings up the traumatic memories how Hime used to be forced to cross-dress. However he seriously thinks he could go for him right now! He starts the harassment but gets a kick from Unko. Hime is the property and toy of the student council! He is taken by 18-kin’s beauty but she warns him if he wants to come close, he must cross-dress. Tadokoro seeks Hime’s advice on how to wear a bra… Hime doesn’t wear a bra… The rest point out he wears panties underneath the skirt. Kaguya is not happy his brother is being harassed. Similarly, Mitsunaga “Mittan” Oda of the public morals committee and maid Hiro are watching and the former doesn’t like this a bit. When Mittan and Kaguya get to know each other, they realize they can be allies since their common enemy is the student council. Their goal is to take them down. Kaguya promises to Hime he will save him from that perverted student council. But the student council thinks Kaguya might join the public morals committee as the same birds flock together. Because Mittan is a cross-dresser as well! O…M…F…G…

Episode 3
18-kin’s father is the board of this school and since he pumps in cash, they have to do his weird orders every month. This time they are to offer their support to club activities. Hime is made to dress in a cheerleading outfit to help cheer for the guys’ cheerleading squad. Everyone is smitten by Hime. And they know he is a guy… Which makes it better… They make him do several cute poses that sends 18-kin into a fit of jealousy. Yeah. Hime is so cute from doing everything including how he apologizes. Too cute. Then during the volleyball game, their school is losing. Hime is sent to cheer on them but he slips and reveals his panties. Instantly their side get so motivated that you could hear the hall rock, to make a comeback win! Hime wears several cosplay outfits to be the model of the photography club. Too cute. What parts are they looking at?! Again, 18-kin becomes jealous and breaks them up. Later when the photos are developed, Hime doesn’t remember he was in some of them. They Photoshop in most of them and are planning to sell them… Yeah… It’s going to fetch a high price. Hime tries to persuade them to dispose of it all since that is not even a girl in the photos. The way he blushes and says that… Damn, he is cute!

Episode 4
Hime is forced to pose a semi-nude shot for a couple of art club girls to draw! Yeah, they’re loving it. However they weren’t drawing lewd enough so Bell blows her top and demonstrates sketching a very lewd picture of Hime. Once they realize who Bell is, they want her autograph. As Hime finds out, Bell is a famous manga artist for a yuri manga magazine. There is a new series she started that has the main magical boy character looking a lot like Hime… Hmm… Hime is shocked to hear Bell’s foul mouth, though she ‘warns’ her stuffed doll, Magyorubo not to say such things. Yeah. Half of the words in her sentences are censored. Though Hime is happy to learn more about his seniors, another round of foul mouth ranting makes him realize how scary Bell can be.

Episode 5
Hime’s test marks aren’t good and even more insulting that Unko is top of the grade! 18-kin and Bell also rank in the top 5! Something is so wrong… So they’re going to give Hime some private tutoring? On health studies? So suspicious… And those top students can even talk about how babies come from cabbages and storks?! They move on to the subject of cross-dressing mysteries. Is there even such a subject? They start arguing what kind of panties suit him and decide he should wear a white t-back tomorrow. Hime thought she is getting some real tutoring when Unko guides her. However 18-kin turns it into some penalty game. One wrong answer means a piece of clothing stripped! I think they’re making up the answers… In the event if Hime is totally naked (in which she is now!), they’ll just put those random white lights and steam! I think 18-kin isn’t so interested in tutoring him because she’s more interested in ‘polishing’ his femininity.

Episode 6
There is a long line at Bell’s booth at the Comiket. Hime is forced to work while the rest just supervise. Bell just loves the thought that everyone here is mistaking Hime’s gender. Her booth is completely sold out but no rest for Hime yet. Time for her cosplay action. And we’ve got lots of guys enjoying taking pictures of Hime. Low shots okay? When 18-kin hands out her business card that she is this cross-dresser’s manager, the guy seems disappointed. Is his world ruined? On the contrary, he loves it! The world is so screwed… Mittan and co are here to stop their despicable activity but the crowd mistakes them for fellow cosplayers as well (the maid…). They are forced to join in. In the end, the gang celebrates their great success. Bell is impressed with Hiro’s taste in manga while Hime vows never to cosplay again. 18-kin points out everyone was happy taking pictures of him although Hime wasn’t thrilled he spent his entire time trying to hide his gender when everyone knew about it. 18-kin shows a photo of Hime sincerely smiling. A beautiful smile that shows he had lots of fun. It is something he should be proud of. Hime blushes. Kaguya looks worried but as Ichigou says, he will always be the cutest.

Episode 7
The student council are supposed to meet the swimming club. Yeah. Hime in a swimsuit. I don’t even… But the boys are getting turned out… Hime is getting swamped… Sickos… Of course Mittan doesn’t approve of all this and because 18-kin is also doesn’t like Mittan’s suggestion, Unko suggests they have a race. The winner dictates the loser. First up is Unko versus Kaguya. Obviously the athletic Unko beats Kaguya flat (no pun intended) although 18-kin points out Kaguya’s loss was his ‘little rudder’ down there. Next are Mittan and Hime. However they realized too late that Hime cannot swim (why the heck did he jump in?). He is sinking like a rock so 18-kin dives in to pull him out. Time to give him mouth to mouth resuscitation. That won’t be needed. Hime instantly wakes up from the shock that he might be kissed. But once he learns 18-kin saved his life, he thanks her. Although she blushes, she points out his tits are showing… Wait a minute. Is there technically a problem with this?

Episode 8
Sighs… There is even not let up on weekends. Hime is still forced to cross-dress while going out with the student council trio. A couple of guys are trying to hit on Hime. You think the trio are going the beat them up and save him? Well, they put the dudes’ hands on Hime’s crotch! Once they realize, they run away! That should scare them off! So why are they shopping? They’re here to get a new bra for Hime! Why does he even need one? He is completely flat. However just by hearing that word, Bell erupts into a rage and thinks she is being insulted. She then forcefully takes Hime away to measure her chest. Feels like she is taking out her frustrations on him… Anything he says is like an insult. Time for punishment! How small can the measurement go? The panicking clerk outside thinks they’re doing some kinky S&M play… In the end, Hime is forced to buy lots of bras. So as not to go to waste, he tries them on. Kaguya sees this… That snicker… Oh sh*t!

Episode 9
This time… Hime is forced to take part in a swimsuit beauty pageant. He is joined by the rest of the student council. So as not to lose out, Kaguya also joins and has Mittan and Hiro take part too. Hime wonders how Kaguya could hide his ‘little buddy’ in such a skimpy outfit. He is wearing some support designed for cosplaying. Well, Hime isn’t wearing any because 18-kin insisted it would be better if it ‘slipped out’. When it is time for the contestants to make their appeal, 18-kin pushes Hime and he falls down exposing his… Uhm… Children, close your eyes!!!! Guess what? The crowd loves it!!!!!!!!!! And Hime won first place!!!!!!!!!! THIS IS JUST SO WRONG AND SICK!!!!!!!

Episode 10
Kaguya and Ichigou enter the room only to see Hiro doing something steamy to Mittan!!! HOLY SH*T!!! Later as they are at the school gates to check for rule breakers, Kaguya wonders if they are lovers. Hiro admits they are something like that but Mittan vehemently denies. Kaguya thinks he is tsundere. Then this big revelation… HIRO IS A GUY!!! OMFG!!!! A GUY CROSS-DRESSING AS A MAID???!!! But what about those big boobs? Hiro takes it off and shows the fake boobs behind it. Mittan wonders about Kaguya and Ichigou’s relationship too when another revelation… ICHIGOU IS A GIRL AND ALSO A CROSS-DRESSER!!! Therefore it bugs Mittan to think where they cross-dressers stand when it comes to uniform violation. Mittan wants to tell off 18-kin for that indecent exposure but is totally ignored. Unko crashes her bicycle into Mittan and thus some lewd exposure… In the end, all the public morals committee members’ names are also taken down. Technically, they’re dressing the wrong uniform for their gender, right? Mittan wonders why Ichigou cross-dresses. She hints it has something to do for Kaguya. She guesses that Mittan also does the same for Hiro but Mittan starts blushing.

Episode 11
Mittan invited Hime, Kaguya and Ichigou but how come the student council trio are here too? Well, they overheard and came. Dang. Since it is rude to push away guests who come (says Hiro), they are invited in. As usual, the trio run their mouths about Mittan’s big mansion that her father may be into something shady. Heck, they even make themselves really at home in her room. When Mittan leaves, Kaguya is in cohorts with the trio to find Mittan’s secret stuffs! Hiro shows them the cupboard where she keeps her fancy bras! There’s a G-string too… Mittan returns in a kimono, something he usually wears at home. He also has prepared kimonos for the siblings. Because they are not used to it, they become clumsy and accidentally pull each other’s top down. Fanservice? Knowing that they are traps… Eww… After they leave, Mittan relishes it is going to get quiet but Hiro points out his lax face which is a big indicator he actually enjoyed it.

Episode 12
A couple of guys try to peek into the girls’ changing room. Hime stops them but gets clumsy. They know Hime is a cross-dresser but can’t help find him cute. He tries to warn them but they are about to get rough with him. At this point, seeing how cute he is, they don’t care he is a trap anymore and strips him!!! OMFG!!! Ultimate molestation!!! The student council trio are hiding behind the bushes enjoying and watching… Luckily Mittan is here to stop this unholy act as Hiro ‘steals’ their belt to drop their pants. Mittan then calls out the hiding trio. As usual, they’re being casual about it but this is the last straw for Hime. He feels disappointed. He was trying to fulfil her duty as a student council member and this is the thanks he gets? This is not funny anymore! Oh dear… He looks serious. And for once they feel really bad that they have done something wrong. Even back home, Kaguya can tell something is really wrong with Hime. You can’t mistake that gloominess. Next day, Kaguya confronts the student council trio to tell them that Hime is quitting the student council. Wow. They look genuinely shocked. Hime continues to space out… That sadness…

Episode 13
Gloomy mood. Well, I didn’t know the student council trio cared. But 18-kin tries to stay ‘positive’ that they just need to find a new toy. However Bell asks her if she likes Hime only because he cross-dresses. Hime is having lunch with Kaguya and as the latter mentions, though it makes him sad that he has got used to seeing Hime cross-dressed, now that he has quit the student council, he is not obliged to do so anymore. On the way home, Hime gets assaulted by a couple of boys who have truly awakened to their trap passion! OMG! OMFG!!!! What the f*ck is wrong with these kids these days?! Thanks to Unko’s kick, Hime’s chastity is saved. Surprisingly, Unko and Bell start crying to him. It has been lonely without him around and they promise they won’t play around with his virginity anymore. No comment… 18-kin can’t find the right words. No need to because Hime also ends up crying. With Hime back in the student council, they cosplay and work in the school’s cafeteria to increase its profits. Mittan isn’t happy over their indecent dressing while Kaguya wants to join them. Since Hime is being whiny, 18-kin kisses him to shut him up! OMG! His first kiss… Ah well, at least everything is back to normal.

Look Out! It’s A… TRAP!!!
Thank goodness… I didn’t awaken to the trap passion!!! Thank Heavens! Thank God!!! It was funny while it lasted and thankfully each episode is just as short because I don’t know if I would still be the same if this series was like those normal 24 minutes duration anime. Can you imagine 24 minutes of trap hell and passion? I can’t. So with everything back to normal, it just makes me wonder if they will ever learn their lesson because my guts is telling that once this is blown over, everything is forgotten and Hime becomes the victim again. But that is another trap story. Therefore the big lesson of this series: Learn to appreciate your trap because you’ll never know the true value of one till you lose them. Okay, I made that up. But you can see how important Hime has become, right? Uh huh. Who else would be so gullible to be screwed around so easily and then fluster oh so real like a girl. Yup. Better appreciate your traps.

Everyone here is so twisted one way or another. Because for our main and supporting characters, if not for many of the guys cute enough to cross-dress as a girl or a girl plain enough to cross-dress as a guy, those who are straight are screwed up in the head. You can see their f*cked up and couldn’t-care-less attitude that makes you wonder the future of the nation. People like these in the student council are worrying, no? Yeah, they act like the school is their playground and other people (Hime in particular) like their property. No respect. Like they care. And for minor background characters, it seems they too are as sick as the rest because the guys, they just don’t care if Hime is a boy. Heck, once they know, it is like their inner trap fetish awakens and they really want to do all sorts of stuffs to him. Rape him. Seriously. Doesn’t it make them gay? Like they care. I mean as long as Hime looks like a girl, sounds like a girl and acts like a girl, he has got to be a girl, right? Sure, he is downright a boy as far as his physique is concerned. But 3 out of 4 isn’t bad, right? Yeah. That. And so with this logic, I suppose that is why the men, young or old, couldn’t resist succumbing to their sick trap fetish and find Hime super cute. So gay… Are they really trying to awaken our trap fetish?!

Every episode sees how Hime gets screwed up, sexually assaulted and being forced into by the student council trio’s naughty schemes and it feels pitiful to see what kind of sick plot he has to go through every time. It is already bad enough that he is made to cross-dress in various outfits, it is even worse that people know he is a cross-dresser and approve it! If embarrassment was a disease, Hime’s life would have been cut short and died by the time the anime ends. Well, you can’t blame Hime because his overall character is so effeminate that you can’t help feel tempted to take advantage of it. So cute in blushing, so cute in denying, so cute in agreeing. So cute in everything! If he was crude and more assertive, Hime wouldn’t have become a victim of this predicament and also he might have been less cute, which defeats the purpose of this anime anyway. Therefore when the penultimate episode sees Hime having had enough, this little crisis and drama were just probably to make our hearts skip a little. But my guts and experience tell me that it won’t stay that way and true enough it didn’t. All is well, ends well? Yeah, abnormal of having so many people cross-dressing or having trap fetish is the normalcy.

The most mind boggling fact of the series is how Hime is named so. I know that there are many Japanese names that are gender neutral but definitely there are some which are gender specific like Sakura, Sanae, Haruka and even I believe Hime itself is reserved for females. So how on Earth did Hime end up with such a girly name? Ah, remember his irresponsible parents? That. Now it explains everything. Some of the other character names too raise an eyebrow because like Unko, that literally translate to sh*t. I know it matches her personality but having a character named so is just bad enough. Or it could mean lucky child (in which her official name actually spells out this way) but we are more inclined to think of it as sh*t. Then there is 18-kin whose name itself reveals that she is more than 18 years old and thus the reason she might by staying back in school is because she is too dumb to graduate and thus held back. Haha!

I wonder if there is some sort of romance brewing for 18-kin towards Hime. There are quite a number of scenes that hint on this. You will notice 18-kin’s body reaction of getting jealous or stopping something when it gets too steamy. Her reactions of blushing and all feel genuine. Like as though she has some sort of feelings for Hime and can’t stand to see him being violated anymore although the irony is that at times she and her gang enjoy watching her in embarrassing situations. That final kiss may have increased that possibility. I also wonder if Mittan has any sort of crush on one of the student council members because despite his goal to take them down, we never hear the reason behind it. Could it be that he is jealous and being tsundere? There are no obvious hints like how we see 18-kin for Hime and is just purely speculation. But Hiro x Mittan… Hmm… Is this considered yaoi or yuri? I’m so confused.

The drawing and design of the characters make them look cute and pretty especially our traps. Like as though they’re trying to make us fawn over them and awaken our inner trap fetish for them. But at the same time with the constant reminder that they are guys underneath the skirt, it’s like screwing with our minds but at the same time hoping we would be enthralled and be lured into the world of traps. With so many pretty boys looking like pretty girls, it feels like God made a mistake to put them in a wrong body and thus the only way to correct this is to cross-dress. Of course the best one is Hiro because of the maid dress… Oh sh*t! Am I awakening to the trap fetish too?! It’s the maid, not the guy underneath it. The maid! THE MAID, I tell you! God damn it! They know my weakness and took advantage of it!

Therefore it is a big dilemma for the fanservice parts because although we get to see delicious shima pantsu shots and even glorious tits! Yes, exposed tits, I tell you! But then you realize they belong to guys and that sudden happiness-cum-disappointment. To see such tits and flatness on guys that look so cute like girls just feels super weird. Holy cow. It’s so wrong but yet deep down in our hearts, we have come to accept it. Have we awakened to the trap fetish? Thank God I didn’t…

Most of the casts are comprised of new or unknown seiyuus such as Yuuki Kuwahara as Hime (Rattle in Freezing: Vibration), Yuka Saotome as 18-kin (Sano in Plastic Nee-san), Saki Ono as Unko, Hisako Toujoui as Bell (Kana in Haitai Nanafa) and Azusa Tadokoro as Hiro (Kotori in Gokukoku No Brynhildr). Chinatsu Akasaki as Kaguya (Maki in Love Lab), Minami Tsuda as Ichigou (Sensei in Denki-gai No Honya-san) and Takuya Eguchi as Tadokoro (Kon in Ixion Saga DT) may have a longer list of voice acting roles but I didn’t really recognize them. The only one recognizable is Ayane Sakura as Mittan because you can’t mistake that bratty voice like the same one as Tokyo Raven’s Suzuka and Vividred Operation’s Akane. Both the opening and ending themes are sung by I My Me Mine, which is basically the seiyuus of the student council quartet. Troublemaker is the lively anime pop opener while the ending theme, Make-up is equally as dynamic.

I am not sure if the series’ title is a play on words to play hidden princess (the word ‘hime’ can mean both princess and to hide) but considering that a big majority of the characters know about Hime’s trap, how can this be something hidden? Or it could just mean ‘princess thing’ or Hime’s thing. Maybe a subtle hint to mean scream (himei) because I believe that is what Hime wants to do every time he gets screwed up and draws the end of the short stick. Unfortunately with him being so princess, you’ll hear no shrieks. Just screaming in his heart, eh?

Come to think of it now, don’t their parents or some morally upright guy start screaming their head off objecting to this cross-dressing thing? Oh yeah, I forgot. Even if we don’t see the characters’ parents here, I bet they are as screwed as the other characters because what kind of parents would let their sons become a trap? Because deep down inside all of us guys, there is this female screaming to get out. And when that happens, you start cross-dressing. I mean, it must have become a norm for Hime that when he temporarily quit the student council, why the heck is he still cross-dressing?! So used to it, huh?

Therefore you should only watch this anime if you are here for some sick twisted laughs-cum-entertainment because you’re a sick twisted sadistic person or you are one of the many characters in this anime who have awakened to the trap fetish. Because after watching this twisted trap theme, it’s like saying men is okay raping other men because women don’t quite make the cut anymore. Because women are now into hot handsome men rape each other. Because we live in a twisted screwed up world so it’s okay. No it’s not! So beware if you want to watch this show and risk getting your dreams crushed and your sexuality confused. You’ve been warned of this trap…