Comic Party Revolution

November 13, 2011

When you talk about doujinshi, animes that come to mind are Genshiken, Doujin Work and Otaku No Video. Comic Party Revolution fits under this bill as well. Actually, this is the sequel to the Comic Party series and the reason why I went straight into the sequel was because I couldn’t find any decent shows of it around. Even if there were, they’re all dubbed. You know me and dubs. We’re like cats and dogs. It’s not that I’m going to lose a lot if I don’t watch the first season, right? That depends. But who cares anyway. I just wanted to know more about the doujin world. Not that I’m really keen of entering it but after my experience watching some of the titles as mentioned earlier on, I am just curious to find out how different this is or how strikingly similar everything are. Behold! The world of the doujin otaku…

Based from what I read, the first season is about this university guy, Kazuki Sendou and his childhood friend-cum-university-mate, Mizuki Takase living a pretty normal university life till Kazuki’s scheming buddy Taishi Kuhonbutsu drags him into the world of doujin. Once you check in, you can’t check out. So this Kazuki got fascinated and addicted into drawing his own doujin so much so he cares about the next convention rather than completing his homework. But Mizuki, the kind of girl who hates all those otaku stuff is adamant to bring them back to their normal lives. Can they? Watching from this sequel, I can definitely guess Kazuki didn’t really go back to those good ol’ days. Looks like you’ve got to try harder, Mizuki. If not, if you can’t beat them, join them. No way!

As I further found out about this sequel, it was supposed to be only a 2 episode OVA but was subsequently expanded to 4 episodes. However they decide to adapt it to a TV series but the thing is, the first 4 episodes are exactly the same as the OVAs. It’s like repeating the same thing over the TV, eh? So how would those who have bought the DVD prior on feel? I don’t know? Maybe it’s the kick of rewatching such shows. As compared to the first season, this sequel does not follow any particular storyline so you can say each episode can serve as a standalone. Yeah, you don’t have to crack your head worrying about missing the plot if you skipped an episode. Plus, some of the minor characters are given more screen time so that fans of that character can go squealing in glee. Oops. I mean, for us to appreciate their presence more.

Episode 1
Kazuki is manning a booth at Comic Party AKA ComiPa doujin convention (parody of Comiket). He notices Aya Hasebe gloomy because everyone is bypassing her booth. Even her lane! Kazuki’s friend, Subaru Mikage (“Pagyuu~!”) pays him a visit. He tells her about Aya’s predicament. She reads her doujin, gets excited, takes a liking, becomes her instant fan and buys her work. Then when being told that nobody else bought it, she thinks there is some conspiracy. She pinpoints to be some huge muscular gangster-looking guy, Yuuzo and gets ready to exorcise him in her miko outfit. However she is taken away by the official, Minami Makimura for causing a ruckus. Next day, Aya pays Kazuki a visit to get help to finish her manuscript before the next event. Subaru also comes by and also Yuu Inagawa who gladly offers her advice. Then it’s Eimi Ooba turn but since she and Yuu can’t get along, they argue and cause a pen to be stuck in Kazuki’s forehead! He kicks them out. Next ‘teacher’ to come in is Taishi (he came out from underneath Kazuki’s bed!). Proclaiming to be Kazuki’s eternal brother, he tries to kiss him! Of course he gets kicked out too (probably getting beaten up with a bat with nails too). Next ‘teacher’ turns out to be cosplay fanatic Reiko Haga as she puts Aya on several cosplay costumes. Some familiar ones like ToHeart and Utawarerumono. Then with Aya in a swimsuit, Yuu teases Kazuki and hits him, causing him to fall onto Aya. When childhood friend, Mizuki comes in to let him try her stew, she sees them in an uncompromising position. Hey, why is everybody else there too? She gets upset and beats him up before dashing out the door. While Kazuki is recovering from his pain, the rest are eating Mizuki’s stew! That’s it everybody! Get out!

Aya pays Subaru a visit the next day so that they can finish their manuscript. However Kazuki got a fever and collapses onto her lap after spilling his drink all over his manuscript. Aya nurses him back to health but he wants to help her finish her manuscript. So they make a deal that he will continue to rest and will help out once his fever comes down. They work hard and eventually manage to finish it. On the day of the convention, Subaru puts up bright lights over their booths. Due to some logic that bugs will be attracted to lights. Is she referring otakus as insects?! Anyway the whole thing got taken down and she taken away by Minami. As usual, everyone bypasses Aya’s booth. A couple of otaku jerks start taking unauthorized pictures of Aya (she’s in a cute cat maid outfit). They ignore Kazuki who is telling them off. When Subaru comes by, she sees Aya in a pinch and goes into her exorcist mode and sends the duo flying into the ceiling with her ultimate Daieryuu Evening Whirlwind Technique. Though she got taken away once more by Minami. But the ruckus has attracted the attention of everyone so Kazuki takes this opportunity to advertise. Some customers have a look at Aya’s book and some are impressed. Though at the end of the day Aya’s sales aren’t much, she is happy that she has more readers now. Then they meet Subaru, who by the way hasn’t sold a single book of hers. Kazuki thinks it’s Subaru’s turn to get help. But the thing is, everyone is converging at Kazuki’s place with their usual ruckus.

Episode 2
Eimi is devastated that she’s the only one who has to attend summer classes. Taishi spots Eimi staring at a poster intensely and thinks she’s aiming for world domination! Actually she’s looking at a beach poster and yearns very much to have fun in the sand. At Kazuki’s place, Eimi forces him to want to go to the beach so she will have to tag along. However he teases her about summer classes. I’m not sure about her consulting a badass cigar-smoking Moroccan penguin mascot on her monitor about the beach and summer classes. He tells her all she needs to do is not let others know about her summer classes. So as Eimi is on her way to class, she spots Subaru and panics. She tries to hide and when Subaru spots her, she pretends she didn’t see Eimi and walks away (because she’s giving her that evil look). Same thing with Mizuki but with a poster board? Eimi tries to put on sunglasses and a mask as disguise but Chisa Tsukamoto recognizes her and starts fearing her. Seems she’s standing in the middle of the road. Chisa runs pass her while Eimi is left stranded in the middle of traffic. Unknown to Eimi, Taishi and Yuu are observing her every move via cameras everywhere. Consulting the penguin once more, he chides her for her weak disguise and suggests a more thorough one. Next day, Eimi wears a foreigner drab but it seems Chisa could still recognize this fake French chick. Then outside a store, Minami spots her and gives her a lecture about not worrying others. Too bad Eimi didn’t stay long for her long boring speech. I’m not sure about this but Eimi accidentally bumps into Yuuzo who tells her to be careful of his huge swimming trunks he dropped. Isn’t that sexual harassment.

Back to the penguin, he tells her that everyone she ran into is making a fool of her since she may be the only one who hasn’t gone to the beach. To make sure Kazuki hasn’t leaked this secret to everyone else, Eimi rushes to find him and sees him working at the doujin store. However she can’t confront him since she’s in her school uniform. But she’s having paranoia that Kazuki plans on going to the beach with the other girls except her. Meanwhile Taishi calls Subaru, Mizuki, Chisa and Minami to a meeting with him and Yuu. It’s about Eimi’s weird actions and he tells them of her ruthless plan to conquer the world! However he is confident she hasn’t arrived at the final destination yet, which is Kazuki. Kazuki finds Eimi sitting dejectedly outside his door. She comes crying into his arms. But Taishi and co confront them as he mentions about her world domination ambition. Seems the other girls have their own misinterpretation of Eimi’s world domination like space colony, dictator and even a secret evil company. WTF?! The girls ‘interrogate’ Eimi about her plans so she reveals about her intention to go to the beach. With that, the other girls turn to Taishi and he’s going to need a very good explanation of the predicament he has gotten them into. No need for that. Just beat him up. Kazuki finds out Eimi was hiding for it from him so he would keep his promise. Eimi throws a tantrum about wanting to go to the beach and even rants about her ideal beach. She and Yuu get into an argument since the former didn’t make it clear earlier on which landed them in lots of unnecessary trouble. And when Eimi finally manages to go to the beach with Kazuki, she’s embarrassed to come out due to her swimsuit. After all that trouble…

Episode 3
Yuu and Eimi are upset that they got the same booth number for the ComiPa. Of course as Minami notes there is some mistake but it can’t be helped now. Since they aren’t willing to give way, the only way to decide is via baseball match. Yup, winner gets it. Yuu goes on a member recruiting spree and beats Eimi to recruit Kazuki first, even if that guy doesn’t know what’s going on. She then goes on to ‘persuade’ others to join her like Taishi (volunteered), Mizuki (reluctantly), Chisa (promised to book lots of printing), Subaru (because Kazuki said so) and Reiko Haga (instantly agreed). While they have amassed 7 members and needing 2 more, Reiko brings 3 of her pals to sew clothes. Yuu takes this chance to force them to join her team. Hey, now she has 10 members! First training that Yuu gives to her team is to read baseball manga! WTF?! Then everyone starts fantasizing their own ideal baseball manga fantasy. I don’t think this is going anywhere. On match day, Yuu and her team meets Eimi and hers. Seems Eimi has that otaku pair, Yuuzo and Aya. Hey wait a minute. Taishi and Chisa defected to her team? Chisa’s reason something about her side will book more printing orders? With Minami as the umpire, the match starts with an opening ceremony. What? Yeah, a ball toss from a popular idol Asahi Sakurai. She pitches a throw to start the match but the otakus and Taishi start fighting among each other to bat her ball. When Yuu makes Asahi part of her team, those 3 guys request to transfer team. Rejected! So it’s Yuu’s Rockers vs Eimi’s Penguins. Expect lots of antics, passion and clumsiness as they bat and pitch their way through the games.

Aya’s pitch may be soft but her ball glides over the bat so nobody could hit them. Mizuki faces off with Yuuzo but each time he hits a homerun. She got tired after pitching all day. Her teammates are concerned but after some flashback about making some promise not to give up to her coach (who the heck is he?), she continues to pitch. Penguins are in the lead so Yuu calls an emergency player, Ikumi Tachikawa to counter Aya’s miracle ball. She came straight out from the ambulance from the hospital! She can even barely stand! As Yuu explained, Ikumi is their secret weapon since they need somebody wishy-washy to hit a wishy-washy ball. Huh? Yuuzo is moved to see Ikumi going to great lengths in the game and is ‘paralyzed’ (because she’s his little sister). Though Ikumi is able to counter Aya’s ball, it is   a soft ball but heading towards Yuuzo’s way. However he could only stand there in tears thinking how brave front Ikumi is putting. Yeah, he can’t catch her ball. Thus letting Yuu’s team win. Then on the final face-off between Eimi and Yuu, Penguins could’ve won if Yuuzo didn’t get ‘affected’ by Ikumi’s ‘brave performance’. In the end, the total scores have both teams draw. Yuu and Eimi demand a rematch but it seems everybody has already left the field. So what the heck is this match for anyway?! In the end, Yuu and Eimi are forced to share their booth and they are more preoccupied quarrelling about invading each other’s space rather than serving their customers. Minami thinks they get along so well that they should’ve done this in the first place. Save all the baseball trouble, eh?

Episode 4
Minami is put in charge of organizing Asahi’s concert for the next ComiPa. After discussing details with the producer, he sees a familiar girl in spectacles (not realizing she’s Asahi) and goes talk to her since she looked troubled. She learns that she is having trouble in writing so Minami thinks she’s trying her hands at doujin. She even tries asking what type of story she is writing (love story by the way) and some advice about love via doujin characters and that if is she has dated someone before (of course no). Later Minami meets up with her senpai at the bar and she tells her this girl’s problem. Since senpai is an artist, she always tells her students to fall in love even though it is one-sided just for the experience. Getting inspired, Minami calls Asahi to meet this Sunday. Then they hear the next table getting loud and realize it’s Kazuki drinking with his friends. Actually it’s Taishi getting drunk arguing about some colour. He soon collapses. Minami gets an idea and asks Kazuki to go out on a date. Nope. You didn’t hear wrong. Mizuki and Taishi are spying on an excuse that they’re worried or protecting him from assassins. Huh? But when they see him meet up with Asahi, I guess all that concern turn into jealousy. Yeah even if he is his best friend, this is unforgivable, says Taishi. Minami is also spying so she explains to them what is going on. However Taishi is still unhappy and is going to stop them by force. Minami learns that Taishi is part of Asahi’s fan club and thinks it will be troublesome if he gets involved. So for each ride, each time jealous Taishi (in a mascot suit) tries to interrupt, Minami will be there to bring him away.

Later while Kazuki goes to get a drink, he is confronted by Taishi. He warns him to leave Asahi or else he’ll shoot his air gun and break up their friendship. Not that Kazuki would mind anyway. He gives Kazuki another chance and he sounds dead serious. When Kazuki goes over to Asahi, he takes her hand and run. Taishi gives chase but due to his clumsy suit, he can’t turn and fell off down the waterfall. Elsewhere safe in the cable car ride, Asahi apologizes for the troubles but Kazuki feels honoured to date an idol like her. Then he learns that Asahi’s trouble is actually she has problem writing lyrics for her love song. He advises not to think too much and that everyone just wants to hear those honest words that reside inside her, that’s all. Back home, Minami gets a call from Asahi thanking her for everything. Then soon another call from Kazuki who expresses his gratitude for the fun date. She teases him that she should ask him out on a date next time. He seems okay with it but I guess she was only joking. Yeah, he was even looking forward to that. At ComiPa, Minami visits Kazuki at his booth. He mentions Taishi has never talked to him ever since that day. Then she sees his new doujin so Kazuki lets have a copy free and take an extra one. This is to be brought to Asahi. When Minami relates that date setup the other day, Asahi realized that Minami didn’t know it was her whom she helped. Then she put on her specs and Minami recognizes the similarity. They have a good laugh and express that they love Kazuki’s doujin. Asahi then goes out on stage to appease her screaming fans. Yeah, Taishi’s there too. What a better way to cure his broken heart, eh?

Episode 5
Though embarrassed, Mizuki seems to be doing fine her cosplay of Card Master Peach among the crowd at ComiPa. Then she notices the otaku pair taking sneaky shots of her and rummages their bag to find a small camera device. They maintain innocence and being framed but she isn’t buying it and sends them flying through the air with her perfect batting move of Peach. The crowd goes wild while Reiko and her pals observe her with glee. Kazuki and Taishi also saw what she did. Back in the train, Mizuki asserts her disgust and hate for otaku. Reiko and her pals are discussing about the upcoming Cosplay Fight competition. Miho thinks it’s the best chance to beat Mizuki (I don’t think we want to hear her passionate ranting). But Reiko insists that cosplay should be for fun. Meanwhile Kazuki learns that Mizuki isn’t going to enter the Cosplay Fight. She still thinks this whole otaku thing is indecent and wants Kazuki to go back to their normal lives together. Can he? Well of course it’s a big no-no for Taishi because he needs her for his world domination crap. Well, Miho was listening all the while and throws down the gauntlet that she’s chickening out. But she didn’t like it by taking Kazuki along with her. She went further saying with her out of the picture, they will become Kazuki’s salesgirls in his doujin circle. Taishi agrees when Miho says in exchange Kazuki will draw a BL manga! Miho tells what happened to Reiko and seems she is quite happy. About the BL part, that is. So if Mizuki wins, she and Kazuki will quit the otaku world for good and if Reiko wins, they get the BL. Can’t bear to see their friends fight, Yuka and Mayu later head to Kazuki’s place and place him responsible to stop this feud. Always getting him involved, eh?

During competition day, Asahi is the main judge along with Taishi and Yuuzo. As some of the girls of the series parade their cosplay, Asahi is always giving a full 10 while Taishi and Yuuzo’s score seems to be decreasing with each passing girl. Not moe enough? Then it’s Reiko’s turn. She passes by dejected Mizuki and tells her if she loves Peach. After Reiko has finished, Mizuki goes onstage without her cosplay outfit. Furthermore, she shocks the crowd by yelling she hates the otaku! Then Taishi realizes her uniform is one of the earlier Peach school uniform. Mizuki asserts though she finds the otaku disgusting, she loves Peach very much. Then she underwent a full henshin scene! For real?! The crowd goes wild. The final contestant seems to be a character from ToHeart2, Konomi. It’s the person herself or rather someone who looks very close to her. Everyone is so captivated by her cuteness that they can’t contain their happiness. The otaku pair start going up on stage to take unauthorized pics. Reiko and Mizuki give them a good kick. However they aren’t giving up yet as they plan to get back at them. Absorbing them into their otaku dimension, they seem pretty confident. However Mizuki and Reiko combine their strength to pound them away. I’m not sure if everything was special effects or I’m just seeing things. Either way, it was damn real. But the crowd loves it. Pervert Taishi tries to see what kind of panties Konomi is wearing but spots a mascot of that penguin on it! Shock of his life. But the shockest of them all is Konomi’s wig fell off and it is revealed this person is Kazuki! NOOOOOOO!!! Otakus’ dream shattered. At the end of the day, it’s revealed as a plot by Yuka and Mayu to have someone else win so the rivalry between Reiko and Mizuki will end in a stalemate. They tease Kazuki’s inner awakening for cross-dressing while Taishi is going to be traumatized for quite a while.

Episode 6
Subaru is ecstatic as she relates to Kazuki her new doujin work. Suddenly Chisa comes crashing into them and burst into tears. They learn her dad had collapsed at home and is now recuperating in hospital. Partly he overworked but the other reason is that he pulled an all-nighter for 3 straight days playing an online game. WTF?! Chisa can’t afford to close her shop down and fears this may be the end of the road. Kazuki calls his pals but since ComiPa is just around the corner, it’s either they’re busy, need help or warped in their own world like Taishi. Just leave him there. Subaru gets passionate after hearing her story and vows to help her out. Subaru suggests many flashy suggestions but I guess Chisa has no budget for it. Then Subaru notices the attic filled with otakus trying to meet the deadline. They are there so that they can print immediately after their work is done. Upon realizing Subaru as Chisa’s part time assistant, they have her do errands but she insists she is not their maid. Both girls continue to work hard and though clumsy (like spilling paper everywhere) they didn’t give up. Subaru sees several serialized magazine at the shop and gets an idea. Kazuki pays Chisa a visit as he requests a printing order from her for his finished manuscript. They see Subaru on the phone talking to the magazine publishers. Seems she has an idea of getting them to take printing orders for them so that Chisa’s shop reputation will go up. However nobody is taking the offer. Of course lah. She starts apologizing for the trouble caused. Well thing is, since she was so confident she could get at least one of those publishers, she cancelled all bookings of Chisa’s shop! Yeah, all the otakus in the attic are gone. Boo hoo! What will they do now? Eimi, Yuu and Aya become lifesavers when they show up to request their manuscript to be printed. Mizuki is also there with her delicious cooking, attracting back all the otakus. I think that’s what they’re attracted to. Everybody chips in to help with the printing and by morning, they manage to finish all in time. Just in time for ComiPa. Then Kazuki just realized he forgot to print his own manuscript! Beg as much as he would but Chisa and Subaru are so darn tired that they slept right on the road! In deep sleep! They’re not coming back anytime soon. Perhaps he should go find some other printing shop. Taishi is still waiting…

Episode 7
Yuu wants Kazuki to help her out with her Kansai ComiPa. This means going back to her family-run hotspring inn. He thinks it’s nice once in a while to relax but it seems the rest of their pals are eavesdropping or conveniently passing by and want in. Oddly why the heck is sickly Ikumi lying in Kazuki’s bed in the first place?! Yuu agrees seeing that the more the merrier. There goes Kazuki’s peace and quiet… At Yuu’s family inn, they learn her dream of inheriting this place and running it together with her good future husband. What else to do at the hotspring? Your mandatory soaking-in and why do girls always want to touch each other skin? Taishi plans to go peep so Kazuki goes to stop him but slips. He crashes into the barrier and when it comes down, it’s as though he’s the peeping Tom. Yeah, he saw the girls and they saw him. You can pretty much guess what happens to him. And the other guys. Yuuzo must be one siscon because he only has eyes for his sister’s body. Is that a bad thing? While the rest are playing indoor games, Yuu goes to talk to Kazuki. Suddenly she gets nervous and wants to talk something important. She goes closer to him. In his haste, he nearly fell off the chair but Yuu catches him so they end up like in an embracing position. Eimi saw it but Yuu brushes it off as the girls get into an argument. Then Kazuki overheard Yuu seeking Minami’s advice to ask Kazuki’s feelings. She’s going to do it for herself for the sake of her dream. Later when Kazuki bumps into Yuu delivering the food, she wants to hold him for a little longer. During dinner, I guess dinner could’ve been tasty if Taishi actually proceeded fully with his Full Monty striptease! Yuuzo too wants to show off his bod but when his sister says “Sit!”, he better sit. But Kazuki’s mind is clouded with thought of Yuu and what she did today, his heart confused. That night Yuu goes to soak together with Kazuki in the hotspring since at this hour it becomes mixed bath. They talk about things. But when she starts to get serious, Kazuki then apologizes for never noticed her feelings. She also apologizes that she was using the Kansai ComiPa as an excuse as she really wants to show him around her inn. Kazuki’s mind start fantasizing about them being married so he says he can’t do that yet as he has lots of things he wants to achieve yet. Yuu then realized that it wasn’t what she meant but decides to play along and a little trick on him. Faking crocodile tears, she has him hear out her request. Next day at Kansai ComiPa, Yuu is all energetic to get it moving. The rest see Kazuki in a boar outfit, Yuu’s family inn’s mascot. Seems that all those romantic gestures were actually for him to wear this suit. Yeah those hugging were just to take his measurement! Oh Kazuki, you’ve been tricked. He wants his pure heart back but Yuu indicates that she too at a point shared that same sentiments but brushes it off and has him go to work.

Episode 8
Taishi officiates a tennis match between Eimi-Yuu and Chisa-Subaru. Eimi is distracting Chisa with lots of printing orders so she can’t return a hit even if Subaru takes it. Thus Eimi-Yuu wins the match. Next match is between Mizuki-Ikumi and Asahi-Aya. Asahi is confident she will not lose due to the intensive training she has done at the same time while doing her idol job. However she is as shockingly defeated and realized that Mizuki is better than her as she is still wearing some restraining accessories during the game. Next up, Eimi-Yuu against Miho-Yuka-Mayu. WTF?! Three people to a team?! Is it legal?! Anyway Eimi is serving serves with ridiculously long names but the trio can’t take because they’re can’t decide who to do so and shifting the ‘responsibility’ to the other. Mizuki visits Ikumi at hospital when Yuuzo confronts her. He begs Mizuki to forfeit the next match because Ikumi’s body can’t handle more than 30 minutes of exercise. Though she may not show it, she is bearing a great pain inside. However Ikumi tells of her flashback how she used to watch Mizuki and her then partner Kazuki play tennis matches outside her hospital window. She admired Kazuki though Mizuki was the one who is doing all the work while he just stood there catching his breath. Then one day a stray tennis ball flew into her room. That’s when Mizuki and Ikumi became friends and she learned about tennis and that’s why she wants to badly play and win.

As they prepare for their next match, Mizuki realizes her shoe has been sabotaged because there are enough tacks to fill a bucket! Too late her foot is already injured but she pretends as though nothing happened. The injury is taking its toll on Mizuki during Minami and her foreign partner’s match though Mizuki insists on continuing. Eimi realizes the pair of otakus camouflaging in a poor tree disguise and learn that they are the ones who sabotage Mizuki. It seems they are supporting Eimi and hope to get priority for Eimi’s next doujin issue. Of course everyone has heard it and is upset Eimi would stoop so low though it isn’t Eimi’s fault since they did it on their own accord. Minami gets so mad that she unleashes a flurry of “Sales Terminated” papers to wipe them out! Yuu then forfeits their team from the game. Even so Mizuki isn’t planning to quit. As the match continues, she has flashback of words of her coach not to give up and his harsh tennis training. She makes a comeback with a super fireball smash!!! For real?! Awesome! In the end, Mizuki-Ikumi won as Taishi presents the trophy but they say it isn’t over yet. Yup, they’re going to face-off each other. They mention have they envy the other’s position and their resolve to win. I feel it’s more like the grass is greener the other side. They transform into their respective cosplay characters and prepare to fight. Though we won’t see the match, it seems to indicate that Mizuki won since she has Kazuki accompany her for the day. As revealed, this match was set up with the winner having Kazuki’s day off time priority! No wonder for the whole episode, Kazuki is like so trouble-free and bored! Some dejected, some pumped up for the next match for their Kazuki time. Ikumi is back in hospital and she can’t wait for the next match as she vows not to lose. Looks like she’s taking up boxing now.

Episode 9
Mizuki is upset that Kazuki is turning more into an otaku and wants him to get out more often and exercise. Camping seems to be a great idea but she didn’t expect for everyone else to tag along. Upon arriving at the remote mountain campsite, Mizuki is dismayed that Taishi didn’t bring any food but his useless otaku accessories as part of his plan for world domination. She punched him so hard that he circled the world 7 times! When he comes back, Taishi adds that the nearest convenience store is 3 hours’ drive away and they close at 6pm. Now all the girls are upset and force him to drive them back down to town. But at the end of the journey, they return back to the same spot. Taishi explains this cursed area as an inescapable forest of bewilderment. Plus, there is neither handphone reception nor the GPS works. Looks like Taishi earned himself another 7 trips around the globe. Suddenly a group of armed uniform men appear. Since they aren’t going to handover classified info on the nearest route to town, a survival battle is in place. With sophisticated gun technology and sensor, Taishi starts bragging about this new form of fighting. Since we can’t stand him, he is the first person to get shot and taken out. Even so, he can still continue to brag. However the Pro Team are taken by surprise with some getting taken out since the girls are dressed in cosplay outfit. Moe!

Then some distracting via Chisa as she rampages in high speed via her trolley, breaking through the enemy’s defence. But that’s about it. However the girls get taken out one by one by the Pro Team’s leader because their cosplay is not working on him. As indicated, he has no interested in girls with developed bodies over a certain age. Lolicon! Pro Team are confident of winning since Taishi’s team has only 1 remaining member left. As they regroup, they find themselves slowly being taken out. Confident Taishi explains that the last remaining member, Aya has this stealth personality so nobody can sense her presence. Yeah, I guess all those bypassing moments at ComiPa at least came in handy for this, eh? The leader is the only one left as he starts to panic and search for her. When he thinks he has found her, he found a stuffed doll rabbit instead. It’s a distraction trap as Aya takes him out. In the end, Pro Team admits defeat and for the record, this is the first time they have lost. Taishi continues to brag his bold ambition of world domination going into phase 2. As for the route to town, seems Pro Team are lost and are searching for it a week ago! Mizuki is so pissed off that in a single punch she sent all of the men flying around the world. If you want a free trip around the world, call this girl. Lastly, Chisa’s uncontrolled rampage has finally stopped (by some raccoon statue). She realizes she got separated from the rest and without knowingly went to town. Yeah, she’s the only one who found her way back. While the rest camp out, they get this feeling that they’re short a person but can’t pinpoint it. Hey Taishi, don’t worry it’s not you. WE DON’T NEED YOU!

Episode 10
Eimi is the unbeatable queen of video games. She meets her match when she lost badly to… Asahi?! Yes, that’s her. They have to cut short their meeting since the fans around them start to realize who the idol is. Seriously, they don’t recognize her if she puts on her glasses? Somewhere safe, Eimi thinks the harsh training Eimi has to endure and thus why she has to go to the arcade in secrecy so she decides to be her friend. They hang out together and exchange handphone numbers. Eimi tells her pals about her friendship with Asahi. Taishi is down in the dumps because he worked so hard to approach his idol but somebody like her casually became her buddy. Then she receives an SMS from Asahi but it was plain and boring. Next time, Eimi brings Asahi out shopping with her. A couple of Asahi fans recognize her and goes to talk to her. Eimi gets upset that they are bothering her but they tell a commoner like her to keep out. Eimi blows her top as Asahi brings her away. Because of that, Eimi vows to show the world she can be an idol too. At ComiPa, Asahi accompanies Eimi at her booth. Eimi’s goal is to sell all her doujin to get some prestigious doujin circle fame. When ComiPa opens, they experience brisk sales till people realize the bespectacled person is Asahi. They love her so much, yet they can’t recognize her behind a pair of glasses? They start pulling and pushing so much so the ruckus has Eimi’s circle closed down. Yuu teases Eimi (a little bruised from all that pushing) that she used Asahi to sell her doujin. Of course this is not Eimi’s intention. Then they realize Asahi is not around and must have got separated during the ruckus. Taishi pours salt on her wounds by saying that she abandoned her after using her. Eimi feels gloomy and says if she hadn’t become friends with her, all this wouldn’t have happened. Later Kazuki goes to talk to dejected Asahi. Since she doesn’t know how to apologize to Eimi, he cheers her up that saying anything will do because they’re friends. At the end of the day at the beach, Asahi and Eimi meet up and reconcile. Eimi says she manages to finish selling all her doujin thanks to Brother 2 (Kazuki and Taishi team). Then they both exchange doujin. Finally Asahi asks the most awkward question if Eimi likes a certain person since they should know each other’s boyfriends for a start (as learned from an anime?). She can’t answer so Eimi tries to deflect it back to her and it becomes an awkward situation for them.

Episode 11
Aya picks up a strange Super Manga by the window. When she reads its contents, her face suddenly turns pale. Yuu thinks Taishi is outside her door but only finds the Super Manga. She opens it and becomes terrified. Eimi is annoyed by Taishi’s pestering. He claims they are engaged! It must be true since Eimi didn’t rebuke. She has this feeling about a stalker but notices the Super Manga. Taishi gets scared and warns her not to open. But she was curious like the cat and reads it. Yup, her face is full of fear. A very dejected Aya, Yuu and Eimi gather at Kazuki’s place. He sees the Super Manga and picks it up but Yuu swiftly takes it back. As explained by Taishi, this Super Manga is known as poisoned doujin and those who read it will have their doujin career dead by 100 days. Well, it must be true since the girls are having the worst writer’s block of their lives and can’t draw anything. Their minds are blank when it comes to doujin. Kazuki realizes a print on the doujin that belongs to Manga King of the manga circle in their university. Next day, he along with Mizuki and Reiko decide to go see him at his horror-like dilapidated building. Reiko’s pals are passing by and when they heard about the poisoned doujin, they remember this doujin made everyone fear Manga King though he was restrained and they were all confiscated. As they trek deeper into the dark corridors, they see ‘scary’ stuff enough to be considered greatest horror legends like piles of doujin in the side, teabags on the wall and a wave of porn doujins. Meanwhile Aya, Yuu and Eimi are still down but Aya picked up the poisoned doujin and flips through again. She remembers something and says that they have seen this somewhere before. Aya mentions the poisoned doujin the poison spreads when they read as they are embedded within the small words. Then they recognize this familiar handwriting that belongs to Subaru.

Kazuki and co reach the Throne Room and sees Subaru neatly binding Manga King’s doujin. Reiko recognizes him as the club president, Tsukishima. He wishes to take over the otaku society by doing doujinshi once more. Taishi narrates the history that Manga King was second to none in the doujin world, but since everyone who reads it will have their doujin career killed off for 100 days. In fear of the other doujinshis are also poisoned parodies, they were banished and wiped off the face of the world. Manga King was then treated as an errand boy as punishment. Thus Tsukishima’s reason for revenge. However after years of idling, his manga creativity has gone stale. But thank goodness, that’s when he met Subaru. With her as his right-hand woman, he will confidently reclaim the top of the doujin world once more. Hey, I thought the manga was shelved due to its destructive nature? So this is his personal ambition, eh? Yeah, they’re really hyped to take over the world. As for the question of why it was sent to Aya, Yuu and Eimi, Subaru told Tsukishima to do so because she wanted the queens of the doujin world to bow down to them. And if it’s delivered to everyone in the popular circle, this revenge will become sweeter and sweeter. Kazuki remembers about the 100 days dead career period and when thinking about it, if you want to do it, you have years to do so since 100 days is comparative small and nothing. Everyone starts laughing that what he said is true. A gust of eerie wind blows as Kazuki picks up the poisoned doujin at his feet while a creepy laughter is heard in the background.

Episode 12
Kazuki’s mind is heavy. He’s weighing on Mizuki’s words that he’s already in 3rd year university and she wonders is he going to keep drawing doujin manga forever. When Aya finds out about it, she takes him to see somebody. Likewise, Reiko brings Mizuki to see someone. Aya and Kazuki meet Sawada, an editor of a professional manga publisher. As Sawada mentions, she has invited Kazuki to join them before but he declined. She opens the invitation again but he is unsure of how professionals work so Aya suggests seeing their workplace and how they work. They arrive at the building and learn several weird working habits. Like how nobody is around at this hour. Then they are surprised to see Mizuki and Reiko. They are being brought around by Sawada’s colleague, Chou of the animation department. Sawada brings Aya and Kazuki to see a passionate story making discussion, the pros and cons of editing a story. Chou brings Mizuki and Reiko around town going to several manga artists to collect their work as the deadline is today. Though the artist tries to play dumb about the deadline, but when he spots the cute ladies behind him, he gets excited. Chou becomes the smooth operator in persuading him to submit his work before the deadline. The artist promises he will submit them tomorrow. Yeah, he’s even staring at the girls as they’re leaving. We see several scenes of how unkempt these artists are. Sleeping in unorthodox places and even piles of books over them! Sawada gets a call from an artist, Youya that his assistants all ditch him to do their own doujin since ComiPa is around the corner. Kazuki and Aya volunteer to help out so Sawada gives them directions to his place.

As they arrive, Youya seems tired and lethargic but when he sees pretty Aya, he gets motivated to start work. Do I see a trend here among manga artists? As the duo help out, they talk about doujin as Youya was once into it before turning pro. Sawada stops by to give them a much deserve break and also a sample printing of their work. Youya feels excited about it as it’s like ‘giving birth to a new child’. Aya feels the same as it’s like handing their doujin over to customers after they’ve finished them. Meanwhile Chou continues to bring Mizuki and Reiko around town to ‘remind’ artists to submit their work. When they return, the editor-in-chief says there’s some mistake being corrected so printing is currently on hold but thinks will make it in time. Chou hurries to continue work. As Aya and Kazuki take a train home, Kazuki realizes that she did all this for him. She explains that he looked different yesterday and thought he may have lost his objective for drawing doujin manga. She too had this kind of feeling before. Next day, seems everything manages to meet the deadline. Kazuki now has an answer for Sawada’s invitation. He still wants to keep doing doujinshi rather than turning pro now. Sawada understands because doujinshi is made from the same people that share the same interest so there’ll always be comrades. She feels happy for them. Kazuki and his friends walk back and they seem much happier now. Kazuki returns to his apartment. Taishi is sleeping like a slob on the floor. But Kazuki is unperturbed because he gets all fired up for world domination! Of the doujin world, that is.

Episode 13
Kazuki gets a shocking but good news from Minami that he will be placed in the famous Kabe place position for the next ComiPa. Though Yuu congratulates his success, Eimi isn’t too happy about it and even crossed the line by saying he just draws whatever to attract the crowd and stamp his name on it. However Kazuki is under pressure as he experiences writer’s block. He can’t seem to get it right. Mizuki tries to encourage and cheer him up but he is in no mood to talk. Though he later apologizes for his rudeness, Mizuki decides to help be his wife, oops I mean help cook for him, do his laundry, etc. It’s like she’s being a typical tsundere, giving an excuse that she’s not really doing all this for him. Soon all the other girls congratulate Kazuki and support him to continue to draw what he desires. However things aren’t getting better and it’s getting to him. He’s feeling gloomy. Idiot Taishi can only call him and brag about his world domination. It’s like he’s only giving lip service. Each time Kazuki gets this annoying call, he just hangs up. That’s the way, pal. Don’t further add to your stress. At least Yuuzo even did something to help out. He gave him cookies! No, actually it’s from Ikumi. No yaoi scene here. Anyway after relaying Ikumi’s supportive message, he warns Kazuki not to waste her efforts. Or else… He should know what’s good for him. One morning, Mizuki wakes him up to take him out to relief his stress. He seems refreshed so he wants to return the favour. Mizuki suggests sketching a picture of her. So what kind of model did Mizuki become? One that is clad in only a towel! Is he going to sketch her in that? What choice does he have? Outside, the other girl pals are trying to do something to cheer Kazuki up but they’re worried as he’s not answering the door (maybe he’s so engrossed in naked sketching). They think he has locked himself in for good since the deadline is nearing and there is some kind of special barrier protecting the door so they can’t easily break it down. Seriously?

Once Kazuki finishes sketching, well, it seems pretty good but as Mizuki notes, it’s an oil sketch. Then it’s like she’s hypnotizing him, saying that he never entered the University of Art but yet he drew what he wanted, oil paintings. She says he will continue to draw them. As she prepares to kiss him, the window breaks and suddenly… Another Mizuki?! Seems the Mizuki in towel is the fake illusion that Kazuki desires (?!). She explains due to the pressure of the Kabe space, the nearing deadline and unsure of what to draw, she is an illusion created from his feelings. Plus, the real Mizuki remembers how she wished for everything to return back to those days. Fake Mizuki continues to say the she really doesn’t want Kazuki to draw manga and invites her to her side. However real Mizuki slaps off her hand and won’t accept it because he’s not the Kazuki she knows. She can’t accept this Kazuki who does not like manga. She transforms into Peach while her fake counterpart transforms into… A tennis uniform? Their powers are evenly matched when they hear Taishi’s annoying voice. He pesters Kazuki about the deadline and this manages to snap him out of the spell (I guess his annoyance has its good points). He is shocked to see 2 Mizukis. The real Mizuki tells him not to give up on doujinshi because he likes them. That’s when he got his resolve that he will continue to draw manga. This gives the real Mizuki enough strength to blast the fake one away. Kazuki then returns to draw his manga as Taishi teases Mizuki that she has slowly turn to the doujin side. Think not. At ComiPa, Kazuki mans the booth while his friends and other people patron his work. He is surprised that Mizuki buys a book because she likes his gentle and warm drawing.

Once You Check In, You Can’t Check Out!
Is this a sign that Mizuki has accepted the doujin world? I don’t think so. It’s just that she accepts Kazuki for who he is. Period. Perhaps she realized that Kazuki is much better drawing what he loves rather than forcing him to go back to their boring university lives. In a way, because of Kazuki, he is who he is and there is no one as unique as him. Same goes to every doujinshi. I guess that is what the doujin world is mainly about. The passion of drawing your work and showing it to the world. Of course the selling point is important but that is not usually the main motivation why doujin otakus continue to be a zombie, slog day and night to finish their precious works of art before the deadline. It’s the thrill and joy of having finished something and someone else reading it appreciating it. I think that counts a lot and is definitely priceless. You can’t put a price tag on that kind of happiness and feeling. So Mizuki’s absolute love for Peach doesn’t mean she’s an otaku. Put it in another way. If you love Mercedes Benz, it doesn’t mean you like cars, right?

You can’t judge or say whether the path Kazuki has taken is a good or bad one. He’s doing his best and making the most out of it the way he can. By entering this doujin world, Kazuki gets to meet lots of other nice ‘comrades’ and form his own inner circle. Everyone here helps each other out the way they can. Not only you can find this kind of friendship, teamwork and cooperation in the doujin circle, it’s just like in other circles or societies as well. Taishi is the most amusing and annoying character in the series. You can’t help love and hate his antics but I guess in every group, you need to have a big joker like him. Somebody you could use as a punching bag or give words of advice when needed at times (for Taishi’s case, it’s more of the former). Each of the girls have their own quirky personalities that make them likeable for this series but not memorable in the long run because some of their characteristics are too typical in this ubiquitous genre. How many series do you know have a clumsy loli? The genki airhead? What about the tough girl? Don’t forget the all-important tsundere too. But as far as I know, deep down in all of these girls’ hearts, they definitely have a thing for Kazuki. Because he’s a nice guy and less annoying than his other brother half. Why not? Since this series was based on a dating simulation game of the same name (but without the adult elements in most of them), in the end, he’s got to choose which girl to go out with, right? That’s in the game. In this anime, it doesn’t seem obvious because to me, I think his doujin comes first. His first love. Ah well girls, you got to toe the line for now. It’s nice that some of the girls have an episode focused on them with Kazuki but the series is too short to develop into anything concrete. I mean, there are 10 girls here, how do you expect them all to fit into a short season?

So let’s see if I understand what the doujin world is all about now. Artist draws manga with story. Prints out story. Participates in convention. Waves of people/otakus come in. Walk by your booth. Browse through your book. If they like it, they buy it. Repeat selling process till the show is over. Wait for next convention. I suppose that pretty sums up how I see it. After all these years into anime, I still know nuts about the manga and doujin world. I may have tried to do a little research but the amount of information and details were just overwhelming that I ‘chickened out’. Too scary-cum-awesome to behold and digest it all. And remember if you’re obsessed in something, make sure you don’t neglect the other important stuffs as well. Maybe the word ‘important’ is vague here… Oh well, it’s safe to say that I won’t be entering the doujin world anytime soon or in the future mainly because my drawing still sucks. Looks like I can only draw curtains. Haha! That was a joke-cum-pun for you. Oh dear, looks like I don’t do well in this area too…

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