Popotan

June 17, 2006

Here’s another one of those magical adventure genre anime. At least that’s what I think when I’ve finished watching Popotan. Yup, also another short running anime series with only 12 episodes and that’s that. No sequels or whatsoever.
 
So here’s the basic premise. It’s about the adventures of 3 sisters and their maid who live in some large European style Christmas house which has the ability to travel through space and time. Each time they time travel, they will arrive at a different spot and time. With this, it shows how they made some impact with the lives of the people they meet during their journey. Why do they do this? I don’t really know, even with the explanation at the end didn’t really help.
 
The eldest sis, Ai, seems like the dreamy and blur kind but she’s not as dumb as she looks. Plus she can talk to plants. The middle sis, Mai, is that typical raging teenager while the youngest one, Mii, the energetic and genki type who likes squisshy things and rubbing her cheeks in it. Their maid, Meah, is that typical no-expression and no nonsense kind of character. Though at certain parts where I think she tried to be a little funny (with no expression) but it seemed a little lame. Doesn’t really suit her but funny lah. Oh yeah, they have that pet ferret, Unagi too. She can transform into some human form but only at the end of the show giving the details of the next episode. Hmm… Strange.
 
So let me try to blog this episode by episode. In episode 1, we see a young boy Daichi coming up to the house to take some ghost pictures to prove their existence to his non-believing classmates. Of course the sisters and their maids gladly helped him. The sisters doesn’t seem to look scary especially Mii, who looked kinda cute. Amazingly, Meah was more convincing.
 
In this episode too, you’ll learn that the sisters are searching for Popotans. Yup, it’s actually dandelions. Note that in actual fact it’s actually tanpopo but the sisters seem to refer to it that way. And they want to meet ‘that certain person‘ whom they see in their dream too. By the end of the episode, the sisters have to leave on another trip and so with that giant glowing popotan in the background the house and its inhabitants start to disappear leaving pollens of popotans behind (I think that’s what it is), leaving Daichi and one of his girl classmates staring in awe and disbelief that they’re gone.
 
Episode 2, different time and different place. This time the focus is more on Mai where she’s fed up of time travelling as she’s tired of making new friends and then losing them. So she’s feeling kinda in a pinch. Until she meets Konami, a nice girl and she became good friends with Mai. As these 2 were getting along, Mai suddenly received news that they must again time travel. Torn between staying and going, Konami understood the situation (although she didn’t tell her that she’s going to time travel) and will patiently wait for her return. And so off again the sisters go.
 
Now episode 3 focuses more on Mii. Yeah, this episode is more light-hearted. She decides to be some magical girl and help people in need. Of course most of it doesn’t turn out well and if it does it’s because of coincidence. But her act caught the attention of a father in distraught. His daughter, Lilo, is sick in hospital for so long and so he thought that she could cheer things up. As Mii agreed to do so, she slowly opens up Lilo’s heart. As they caused havoc around the hospital, Lilo becomes more and more cheerful. But I wonder what happened to her in the end. She’s the only character not shown at the end of the series.
 
Episode 4 focuses more on Meah. As a young mysterious young girl arrived at their house thinking that it’s some toy shop. Quite a nuisance as she’s always pestering Meah. She told her that she came from the village nearby. As Meah went to investigate because the sisters are slowly missing one by one, she found that the village is abandoned a very long time ago and the girl is some restless spirit. Not wanting them to leave, she hypnotized the sisters in some ideal dreams of theirs. But with some fight, Meah managed to subdue the little girl and drag the sisters back to the house just in time before the next time travel.
 
Episode 5 isn’t really anything much except the sisters visit some hot spring. But at the end of the episode, as the house is going to time travel, Mai and Meah were left behind as they were just coming back from the springs. Too late. So the sisters are now separated. In episode 6, the house arrived in a place seemingly familiar to Ai and Mii. It’s actually the previous place 5 years in the future! Eventually they meet up with Mai and Meah, who’re already settled down. Again Mai felt torn of moving back with the sisters. However, she had to reluctantly go back. That’s because when the sisters aren’t in the house, time stops for them. Yeah, Mai and Meah hasn’t aged. Not even their hair grows anymore. No choice though.
 
Episode 7 sees them in some beachside. In this episode you’ll get to see Daichi again, but this time all grown up. As he tries to investigate the sisters and their mysterious disappearance, some strange spectacle guy, Keith shows up and beats him up asking him not to get invlove. But this guy seem to also pick a fight with the sisters and especially Meah. He must really have some connections there. As the sisters cannot reveal their identity, Daichi again understood and is willing to wait one day if anybody should ever want to listen to their story.
 
Here’s another episode focusing more on Mii. In episode 8, the sisters arrived next to a Shinto living family, Nono and her strict grandpa, who oppose anything non traditional. Because so, Nono sneakily does fun things with Mii. Of course, it was Mii who persuades her in the first place.
 
And in episode 9, Mai is faced with her past once more. They returned to the same place like in episode 2. Mai was curious that the girl looked so much like Konami. But in fact, she’s actually her daughter, also named Mai. Before her Konami died, she had always waited patiently for Mai’s return, but she never did, that’s why her daughter hold so much grudge against her (had that potrait of her her mom drew during the time wih Mai). Plus it reminded Mai of her earlier encounter with Konami as this Mai doesn’t want to make any friends and rather be alone. Eventually, she learned not to hate her and became friends with her.
 
In episode 10, the sisters seem to be close in finding that person. Also in this episode you could see that Meah previously worked for 2 brothers who also time hoped. Don’t know what happened to them in the end. Their house was on fire. Didn’t get it. So Meah and Keith had a face off in the episode end. With Keith wanting to send the sisters to see that person but Meah disagree as it’s too soon. Keith paralyzed Meah and the house teleports without Meah.
 
Finally in episode 11, the sisters meet that person, Shizuku, and asked the reason of their journey. But Shizuku told them that the place they’re in now is some sort of a pitstop and people who time travel usually decide at this point whether to continue or to stop. If they decide to stop, then they’ll get to go back to that particular time they want to live in. Of course the sisters were torn at first. Keith was like the ‘batu api’ saying things like how their journey seriously affected those people’s lives. So eventually they went their own separate ways.
 
Episode 12 opens with Konami’s daughter and Daichi’s son talking about the sisters. As we see Mai went back to live with to live back with Konami, Mii went back to Nono’s place, whereas Ai became a teacher in yound Daichi’s school. But each of the people the sisters are currently interacting with seem to notice that their other sisters aren’t around and thought that they had some big argument. Eventually they came to realize that the sisters were more happy when they’re together. So they understood and with that the sisters eventually meet back at their house.
 
Then with some miracle, Meah teleported back to the same place. How did that happen? I don’t know, maybe must be for some convenience as the series is gonna end. Yeah, with some words from Meah, Keith suddenly looked like a dog with a tail between it’s legs. In the end as Konami’s daughter and Daichi’s son were wrapping up their conversation, some mysterious house appeared nearby. It’s the sisters and their maid once again! So they’ve decided to continue time travelling and make other people happy, huh. End of story.
 
Conclusion, the story’s kinda ok. Makes you think that in real life too, that when some person that has touched you in your life and is gone, you’ll always remember that person in your heart. Except there’re some nudity parts, which I didn’t really quite like. Usually when the sisters are taking a bath and their breats are exposed. Generally, though it ends quite well, like I said, it’s kinda ok.
 
Oh yeah, the opening song starts with something like a pun of their names. Ai, Ai, Ai, I love you. Mai, Mai, Mai, My darling. Mii, Mii, Mii, Help me. Popotan! Has it got something to do with the anime I, My, Me Strawberry Eggs? Maybe not. But I find it a little funny.