Sengoku Collection

May 5, 2013

Once again. How do you make people especially boys who are not interested in history to sit up and listen to such ‘boring’ subject? Well, one way is to turn all the important historical characters into girls! Imagine a certain unifier was actually a woman. Imagine a certain independence fighter was a woman. Imagine the forefathers of a country were women! Women power! Girls rule! Oh yeah! Let’s not get too carried away. So once more, here I am, having my hands at yet another sengoku themed anime with the all-great unifier of Japan, Nobunaga Oda being turned into a teenage girl. Yes, a girl. Is it so exciting to change one’s gender? For entertainment purpose, I guess so. For historical prospects, I think not.

Sengoku Collection as I have read originated from a mobile social networking game and has been given the anime treatment back in 2012. Unlike other sengoku themed animes that have the setting in the past, this one has the famous people of that era transported to our modern times. Yes. So can you imagine how those famous people back in that era fare with modern conveniences and current cultural norms? Well, as far as I can see, they have already gotten used to life in the new age. It’s much better than those dark ages, right? All hail modern conveniences! The plot is basically this. Nobunaga and many of her generals are transported to the modern age via a mysterious light. She seeks to return to her own time but is told to seek out the Secret Treasures of the other generals if she wants to do just that. And of course the mind boggling reason is that all these famous sengoku people are women! So seriously, where have all the men gone? Each episode features at least one general and how they adapt to the modern lifestyle that we all take for granted. Seriously, do you really want to go back to an era where iPhones and iPads were non-existent?

Episode 1: Sweet Little Devil
Nobunaga Oda just crashed into our world. Literally. She crashed into Seiichi Oota on his bike! Into his gut! What perfect timing! It’s amazing they didn’t die from that impact. It’s amazing he didn’t get a hole in his stomach at that speed. So I don’t know why this Oota guy has to oblige to guide her around despite knowing it’s best not to get involved with this nut case. Probably the fall got to her head. Maybe it’s Japanese courtesy. Can you blame Nobunaga not knowing how to eat a hamburger? Yeah, being taught to eat one. The arrogant Nobunaga makes Oota her retainer. You can’t say no. She even follows him to the convenience where he works. His day gets bad to worse when a lone robber comes in. The robber himself is an amateur because he gets scared and chided by Nobunaga about his petty act. It’s over before you know it. Nobunaga stays at Oota’s place. Just great. Not only he has a freeloader, but he has got to teach her the ways to use modern conveniences. However despite being a pain in the ass, he treasures her company since well, he felt lonely ever since his girlfriend broke up. After a few days of living together, Oota brings Nobunaga to the river. She feels the need to return to her world. I don’t see that she’s unhappy here. Maybe she wants to just go back to a place where she truly belongs. Oota takes her to the shrine where she prays for that wish. If it doesn’t come true, she’ll burn it down! That night when they’re asleep, Nobunaga is transported to dream world whereby she meets Miko Fox, Miko Rabbit and Miko Cat. They have heard her prayer and decide to grant it. But to return to her original world, she needs to gain powers and gather Secret Treasures, power spheres created in the hearts of ambitious warriors during the sengoku period. There are others who come to this world besides her so she needs to seek them out and gather them. Her own Secret Treasure will tell where the others are. And so begins Nobunaga’s quest to hunt down the rest. Oota wakes up to find her gone the next morning but she leaves a Coke bottle that she found at a river (thinking it was some sort of diamond) as a reward.

Episode 2: Peaceful Empress
Ieyasu Tokugawa is enthralled by an idol named Rosary as seen on the big screen. She tries to join in several street dances but they didn’t like how she was upstaging them and was ‘kicked out’. Even the church choir kicked her out! Thankfully, the manager of an idol agency, Hiroshi Ootake senses her talent and picks her up (Rosary is also under his agency). He will give her a chance to shine and in return doesn’t want her to easily give up. After signing the contract, Ieyasu undergoes rigorous training to be like her idol, Rosary. Of course it gets tougher and tougher to a point where she’s at breaking point. She’s on the verge on giving up when Hiroshi shows her Rosary working hard. He tells her many girls wanted to be idols but lots of them dropped out along the way. Rosary was the only one remaining and he was responsible for her debut. Despite Rosary falling down and making mistakes, she gets up and resumes. Ieyasu gets her motivation to do her best once more and is soon joined by the Miko trio as her backup dancers. In no time, Ieyasu makes her debut and mark in the idol world. Her dream comes true when she is to star alongside Rosary. Can’t contain her excitement, she goes to see her but her room. Although Ieyasu was being the usual eager beaver fan, Rosary takes it as sarcasm because she feels there cannot be 2 top idols at one time. She starts talking about the harsh realities of the world and that hurting feeling when it’s time to call it quits when a new idol surpasses you. Ieyasu vows to become a top idol. Ieyasu is soon summoned into the dream world and is confronted by Nobunaga, who is here to take her Secret Treasure. She agrees to give it to her since she wants to stay in this world and work her way to become a top idol. Nobunaga stabs her sword into her chest to take her Secret Treasure. She wishes her luck in her new fight before leaving.

Episode 3: Pure Angel
Kenshin Uesugi and Kanetsugu Naoe are living together. Although Kenshin is a model, seems like she is a ditz and needs Kanetsugu to look and pick up after her. Yeah, it feels like she’s becoming her mom rather than her retainer, eh? Despite the troubles she went through, Kanetsugu is happy to be with her. However this is one big problem she is facing that nobody else knows. Ever since she came to this world, she has become colour blind. All the colours were drained from her vision like as though this world is rejecting her despite they don’t have to fight and living peacefully. One day, Kanetsugu is disheartened that Kenshin used a flag that she was supposed to use for conquering the capital as a towel. Kenshin feels they should give up their conquest since nobody is pursuing them. This doesn’t sit well with Kanetsugu so she runs away in tears. She sits by the river bank where they first arrived and ponders about stuff. Kenshin finds her but Kanetsugu feels she doesn’t need her anymore. On the contrary she does. She wants her to cook more delicious food for her every day. She is so happy that she sprouts wings and the colours return to her vision. Kenshin points out that it wasn’t her wings that show her happiness, but her real smile. Then Nobunaga confronts them for their Secret Treasure. They give it to her without putting up a fight because they want to stay and live in this era together peacefully.

Episode 4: One-eyed Dragon
Masamune Date is sent to prison after being tricked by the yakuza to do a delivery in which the police busted her. In prison, she gets bullied by several of the inmates. She didn’t fight back as she was too busy thinking how she was easily deceived by the yakuza. When she first arrived, she was about to slice a cocky group of yakuza underlings. Till the big boss showed up and wonders how long she would take to kill them. Though she claims 10 seconds, he notes her generosity because he knows she could take no more than 5 seconds to do that. He apologizes on their behalf and introduces himself as Daigoro Katakura of the Midori Gang. Because his name is close to her father’s, I guess that’s why she easily trusted him and accepted his task for some exchange. So when she got busted, his underling took the fall for Katakura. Even the guards ‘bully’ Masamune by ordering her to dig a hole and then filling it up. This continued every day. One day, she blows her top because the inmate bully insulted her parents. Then a big brawl occurs and all the inmates revolt against the guards. Masamune uses this confusion to escape. Masamune goes to hunt down all those who have betrayed her. When Katakura gets word from a lackey that Masamune has broken out and is back in town, too late. She’s already at his office. She wants him to commit seppuku. No other reasoning will do for her. Katakura is sweating in his pants, trying to give all sorts of excuse and even offering her to join him. Just when he thought she let her guard down, he pulls out a gun. Typical baddie move. She easily blocks every bullet and cuts him down with the back of her sword. I guess this scum isn’t worth to be killed or let her sword get tainted. Nobunaga appears before her and wants to claim her Secret Treasure but she refuses. They agree to settle their fight another day and flee their separate ways since the police is raiding the place.

Episode 5: Sword Maiden
Mike Morse is making a documentary, Samurai For Murder on the recent arrival of the sengoku generals in this era. His interviews include Bokuden Tsukahara who is a kendo instructor, Yoshiteru Ashikaga the shogun and Sekishuusai Yagyu the samurai high school teacher. Also in this documentary, Morse has painted Bokuden as a dangerous threat and the fact that these generals walk around carrying swords means that there would be risks of crimes being committed by those who seek to play the hero or samurai. Although the documentary is a success, we learn it has been heavily edited because Bokuden certainly did not say all those threatening and murderous words in the documentary. Upset and depressed, Bokuden talks to Sekishuusai about wanting to reveal the truth. They know they’re not going to let them have their way and if they fight their way in, they would be playing into their hands. But they have a plan. When Morse isn’t in his office, Bokuden talks to a staff outside about a programme that wants Yoshiteru to come to the studio to apologize to a kid who got hurt by one of these samurai incidents. Meanwhile Sekishuusai sneaks in to do her stuff. Prior to the programme, Morse did see Yoshiteru to ask if she could come down to the studio to make the apology. However she doesn’t view this as her fault as the attacker was influenced by the samurai and carried a blade. Morse’s door is still open should she change her mind. She eventually did, apologize and promise to put away their swords. Then she plays a video that has many of the people in the documentary rebuffing Morse’s work as fabrication. It also shows the true story of what happened that seemed threatening in the documentary. Morse panics and tries to worm his way out with an excuse even so, he proved samurais are dangerous. Bokuden reveals a dangerous samurai is on her way here. She is Ittousai and wants to fight Bokuden whom she believes is the strongest. But Bokuden points that Morse is the strongest because she threw away her sword. His camera is stronger than her sword. Ittousai starts attacking Morse and he pleads for the samurais to save his life. But they have vowed to give up the sword, right? He admits everything that he was wrong and the sword is necessary. Before Ittousai strikes him, Bokuden uses the camera to block it. Ittousai admits defeat as both swords and cameras can be used as weapons. In the aftermath, Morse now wants to do a movie that has Bokuden as the main star. She didn’t want to be on TV again till she learns the first episode will have her find kappas up the mountains. She likes kappas?

Episode 6: Knowledge Master
Gennai Hiraga tries to sell her wacky inventions to the public but it all backfires and make her look like a clown. Seems a boy who dreams of being a football star is her only ‘companion-cum-assistant’ as he makes frequent visits to her basement lab and even bought her favourite eel delicacies. Gennai’s dream is to build a time machine to head further into the future instead of returning to the past since she is obsessed about the future’s technologies. Since this supposed time machine (a giant swan?) ready, the duo start testing it. Peddle power? Well, there’s black smoke coming out from. Back to the drawing board. One day, the boy gets excited since he might be getting his big debut although he’s just a substitute. He hopes she can come. Gennai has finished her time machine (she just added more aesthetics?) and wonders the kid’s tardiness. She goes to look for him at school but was told by his friends that he got hit by a car while trying to save a cat. She visits him in hospital and despite just having a fractured leg, he seems to have given up his dream of being a football star. Gennai goes back to make adjustments to her time machine. She starts peddling hard so that she could go back in time to prevent the accident. She did go back to the past but it’s just moments before he saved the cat so she has not much time left. Oh, the time machine is totally busted too. Gennai is quick to fish the cat away and saves him from the accident. He manages to get his debut in the match and though his team lost, Gennai is happy that she manages to see him in action. Gennai tries to fix the time machine but I think it’s beyond salvation. Though she is still interested in the future, she feels she wants to stay put because she wants to bring happiness to the people here too.

Episode 7: Refined Bard
Marie throws her useless husband out of her cafe. He even had the cheek to ask her to sell it to start anew. She throws a bucket at him but she misses and hit the wandering Bashou Matsuo instead. Bashou hangs around this rundown place and Marie isn’t too enthusiastic. I mean, she’s only got carbonara on her menu… Her daughter Ai wants Bashou to stay while the workers, Kyouichi and Satoshi make a bet she won’t last long. Despite everything so dilapidated, she takes an interest in this place. So much so she takes the liberty to redecorate Saihate Cafe, much to Marie’s dismay and she kicks her out. Ai stands up for Bashou that the place looks better all cleaned up but Marie notes she can’t stand that poet’s haiku. Ai at least wants Bashou to stay and help clean the motel. Soon, the cafe experiences a boon in customers with many guys coming to the place to learn Bashou’s haiku. One day Satoshi requests for a day off because he has an audition to be a dancer. Satoshi talks to Bashou and expresses his gratitude that her presence has changed their lives. Even Kyouichi is now resuming his painting. If only Marie could open up her heart and learn her haiku. Then she would stop running away from playing the piano. Eventually Satoshi passes the audition and Bashou wants to hear Marie’s piano but was told not to stick her nose in other’s business. Saihate Cafe has become famous enough to warrant an appearance on TV (Marie is sure nervous) and this also reunites Satoshi and his mother. Despite putting on a stubborn facade, I guess Marie still likes Bashou’s haiku because she secretly reads them and starts playing up her piano. That night also has Nobunaga meeting Bashou and brings her out to sea. Marie saw her leaving and it seems she is reluctant for her to go just like that. She wants her to teach her haiku. She doesn’t want her to go. If she was going to do that in the first place, she should never have come. Next day, Saihate Cafe is at usual in its busy pace. Marie now has a variety of pasta in her menu and puts up a refreshing expression. But she couldn’t be happier when Bashou makes her return because this is where she belongs and after all, the carbonara here is the best in the world.

Episode 8: Regent Girl
Hideyoshi Toyotomi must really love rice to even dream of it. Currently she is living with a girl, Noriko as she tells her about her village’s legend. There is a rock up a mountain in which in exchange for a good harvest, the gods took away the girls who danced and they were never seen again. Only interested in the abundance of rice, Hideyoshi tries that dance herself and when she thought nothing happened, she falls into a hole after chasing her dropped onigiri. It leads her to a fantasy-like place whereby the citizens are rice people! She is being honoured for being the 10,000th customer! Nobunaga is also there and they argue whose dream they are part of while challenging each other to dumb bloated contests. The rice people deem Hideyoshi as their saviour but present to her a test to see if she can pick out which one is the real Akitakomachi rice. Well, they all look the same. Well, Hideyoshi picks the right one! I don’t want to question her about rice. I believe in her expertise in this area. Then the all-time enemy she is supposed to save them is here: A grasshopper. But how can she save them when they panic and run away? Hideyoshi and Nobunaga walk along and meet a scarecrow who shows them some stage drama inside his box. I don’t get it. Then trekking through a desert, they meet Rikyuu who offers them tea and some mind boggling question about erm, questions and answers. I don’t get it. Then they get involve in some fight whereby there is a war going on between the rice and wheat nation. Where did they get that tank? Then in all the abstract and chaos, Hideyoshi is supposed to fulfil their wish before their destruction. All she understands is that she finally gets to eat while everything around gets burnt to the ground. Hideyoshi revives back in the real world where Noriko and the other villagers were worried about her. She thought she was dreaming but it seems she is holding a magical ladle that produces endless rice! Now she can eat all the rice she wants.

Episode 9: Ambitious Princess Part I
Soun Hojo. Now known as Shinkurou Ise. She is depressed. Despite harbouring hopes to become a general, after learning how impossible it is to conquer this world, she just gave up. That easy? Too big to conquer, eh? She is currently living with Jun Takahashi and her mom thinks it would be a good idea if Shinkurou gets outside instead of cooping up inside her room all day long. That means, follow her to school, right? Not a good sign. Jun can’t help get worried. Shinkurou shows no signs of enthusiasm. Even the teacher is afraid of her. Those who fight back get ‘injured’. Think of dropping out? Well, I don’t know how Jun persuaded her to stay on. So the scaredy teacher didn’t want to pick her to answer a question on the board. Nobody wanted to answer. Shinkurou volunteered. Oh sh*t. She amazingly solves the complicated equation with no sweat. Nobody got injured. Phew. But the bunch of bullies got injured in a volleyball match when they deliberately target Jun. Just when Jun thought she is getting used to school life, Shinkurou spots delinquents and thinks they’re the force that controls everyone behind school. Against Jun’s advice not to pursue this, Shinkurou decides to uphold justice and confront them. Think they can get tough with her? Now see if you can hold your pants after she cuts them with her sword! They go get their leader and she is straight to tell him she will eliminate him. Despite making a prior promise with Jun not to use her sword or fist, she kicks and even uses Jun as a spinning projectile to knock them out! Shinkurou feels this is too easy. But you don’t go to school to beat up people, right? So what’ the point of coming to school? So the lie moves on from a molehill to a mountain as Jun tries to pacify Shinkurou. Maybe there’s a bigger bad organization behind this. Yeah. She believes it. She’s going to hunt that down too. Oh dear. Jun may have just created a monster.

Episode 10: Ambitious Princess Part II
Just how is Jun going to come clean with her? It’s not easy seeing that Shinkurou is bent on eradicating this Shadow Thug Alliance. Shinkurou believes she can’t be hurt easily. At least not by flames because when she was young, she went to pick herbs and fell into a volcano but came out alive. After school as they patrol the corridors, they bump into Kotarou Fuuma, a ninja. Another ditz because she really wants Shinkurou to ask her stuff that she wasn’t interested in knowing. A frontal attack for a ninja means a sealed fate because Shinkurou easily defeats her. Kotarou tells her to head to the gym where the big boss awaits her. Shinkurou promises Jun that she will go home with her after she defeats the boss. A giant masked doll appears before her and knows all about Shinkurou and her real name. They fight and Shinkurou insists not to be called by her real name. She starts using her flames but the doll isn’t scared because she controls water and douses it all. Shinkurou is going to show her that she isn’t just more powerful than what the rumours said about her. It’s because it is a fact and the truth! She stabs her sword into the doll and it reverts to human size. She didn’t kill her as her goal is to save the school from the Shadow Thug Alliance. The show is over when Sessai Taigen comes in, Shinkurou’s master. The person behind this doll is Yoshimoto Imagawa. This is a test they setup for her because Yoshimoto wants to gather all the forces she can to settle a score with Nobunaga. Shinkurou agrees to join her and decides to reuse her old name. Jun isn’t happy she is going away just like that but she states that she made a promise with the Imagawa clan first and a very long time ago. She will keep her promise and return to Jun one day. Till then she hopes to be called Shinkurou again.

Episode 11: Brutal Maiden
Hisahide Matsunaga is a con artist. And she’s a pro in her job. A group of thugs led by Kanbara threaten an ambassador if he can’t pay his debts. They want to open a casino inside the embassy grounds as the local laws don’t apply or else they can’t guarantee what will happen to his daughter, Sarah. No choice, he relents. The illegal casino is thriving and Kanbara is happy to see people in despair while losing their cash to the casino. Sarah is desperate so she searches for help. Only a gambler could ruin a casino, right? This leads her to Hisahide as she watches her in a gambling match. Then a cop busts into the place so Hisahide takes Sarah and run. Hisahide learns of Sarah’s predicament and agrees to help her out but first has her learn to use a gun. She’s going to destroy that casino. Hisahide walks into the casino and makes a good run hoping to attract attention. Winning big isn’t going to get her noticed so she starts stealing chips from the unsuspecting old guy next to her. Kanbara sees this and alerts his henchman, Arita to step in. The old guy likes Hisahide’s company so he says he ‘gave’ the chips to her. Then she tells Arita upfront she is here to break this casino. Even if she is captured, her friends will come here every day till it is bankrupt. To settle this, she suggests a one billion yen bet in a high stakes match of poker. One round settles it all. Arita confirms from Hisahide that she has this much money herself when she shows him her bank account book. The game begins and Hisahide is losing. The alarm goes off in the midst and they know it’s Sarah who sounded it. Hisahide tries to get out but Arita won’t let her since the game has just only begun. In the end, Hisahide loses everything and leaves dejectedly. Kanbara never tires in watching such expression when he realizes his safes are all cleaned out. He realizes it’s a trap and orders Arita to go after Hisahide. Outside, he sees Sarah pointing a gun at her. She is distraught that she didn’t live up to her promise to break the casino (despite stealing the money, it defeats her goal) and shoots her! Arita checks her pulse and realizes she is still alive. Then a cop steps in to arrest Hisahide for fraud and Sarah for illegal firearm possession. Arita thought he had Hisahide’s bank account as collateral but realizes it’s fake. So now they’re broke. Sarah learns that the cop is Hisahide’s accomplice (along with several other girls that help her clean out the safe) and now they’ve got all the money, they need to go into hiding for a while. Hisahide guarantees her father will be safe now that the casino is ruined. She’ll accept Sarah’s cooking as payment.

Episode 12: Dancing Blossom
A group of motorcycle thugs surrounds a teacher’s car, Matsuura. She could’ve been done for if not for Keiji Maeda or better known as Saturday Night Rider and her motorcycle named Matsukaze, beats them all up! Their bikes are trashed too! Don’t play with this woman! Yamaguchi who is the strict and no-fun boss of the convenience store doesn’t like her employees to gossip about the goodness of Saturday Night Rider during their shifts. If you haven’t guessed it, despite the goody disguise and retard attitude, Keiji is also working under her as a part timer. Keiji hears a couple of delinquents talk about a group of motorcycle thugs being done in by Saturday Night Rider. She hopes they could take their conversation somewhere else but one of them, Kudou gets rude and pours water over her head. She scares them off with her scary look in the eye. As she cleans herself up, the store is being mugged. Keiji turns off the lights and knocks the robber out. Yeah, one of the employees, Futagawa thought her random panic punched him in the dark. She laments that she hoped Saturday Night Rider should have come instead of a robber and asks Yamaguchi’s opinion. She’s not amused. Later Kudou returns to buy some underwear so Keiji has Matsuura look up on his details. As Yamaguchi walks, she ponders about Saturday Night Rider and accidentally bumps into a guy. He wants more than an apology and brings her to a secluded building. She tries to shout for help but everyone turns a blind eye and deaf ear. The guy is going to rape her as she laments her fate. Suddenly Saturday Night Rider crashes into him and saves her. She had a feeling Matsukaze told her to come this way first and it led her to this. Yamaguchi is given a ride as she feels strange she opened herself up to someone she just met. Saturday Night Rider wakes Kudou up from his slumber to tell him off about wearing wrong coloured underwear!!! WTF?! She wants him to wear white instead of black?! What kabukimono rules?! She strips herself to show him the white underwear she is wearing. WTF?! If he doesn’t change his ways, she’ll be back next week. I think he will. Saturday Night Rider sends Yamaguchi home and the latter wonders if they’ll meet again. Matsukaze will bring her to her when the time comes. Yamaguchi loosens up the next day at work and even asks what underwear colour her employees wear! Always white. She feels they can get along well.

Episode 13: Silver Hornet
Nobunaga sure must be getting used to live in the modern era. She even knows how to use an ATM. Till she meets this girl, Ageha. I know she’s poor but look at the way she ‘saves’ and eats Nobunaga’s melting popsicle before it falls to the ground. Ageha is one sly girl because she convinces Nobunaga to even take her to the laundry to wash her clothes and make her pay for it! Ageha then finds tickets for the raffles underneath a washing machine. Trying their luck, Nobunaga thought winning second prize was great. But Ageha had better luck and wins the grand prize. A trip for 2 to the hotsprings. Meanwhile professional sniper, Zenjubou Sugitani was hired by Yoshimoto to eliminate Nobunaga. She has a hard time tracking her in this big city. Thinking where this devil would be, as luck would have it, suddenly there she is right before her eyes at the train station with Ageha. But with Ageha? Zenjubou remembers she was someone who picked her up when she came to this world. Despite spending time with this homeless girl, she felt natural around her and as an assassin, she can’t let that happened, that’s why she disappeared from her sight. She doesn’t need friends. All she needs is a target. While Nobunaga and Ageha enjoy their stay at the hotspring, Zenjubou has no luck in assassinating Nobunaga. Whether it’s playing ping pong (all in right timing, Nobunaga unknowingly slams the bullet back almost hitting Zenjubou!) or having a sumptuous meal (Zenjubou only had a chocolate bar. Poor girl. It made her even hungrier), it is getting to her. Then next day at the beach, Ageha’s sand pit that has Nobunaga falling through it once more made Zenjubou miss. It is not until Ageha trips and accidentally kisses Nobunaga on the lips that made Zenjubou blow her top and confront her in the open. Learning she’s an assassin, Nobunaga tells her off while she aims for world conquest, she can only aim to kill. She then takes Zenjubou’s Secret Treasure. That night Nobunaga leaves so Zenjubou wonders if Ageha will be sad without her. That’s why she wants her to be her good friend instead. So when Ageha learns Nobunaga had just left, she hopes Zenjubou won’t bail on her like that too. Sure thing.

Episode 14: Novel Deciders
Isami Kondou, Toshizou Hijikata and Souji Okita are living together in a girls’ dorm. Despite Souji always being sick, the duo have the nerve to hang out in her room and bully her. And there’s this narration despite being the weakest, she is said to be the strongest. Only thing is, nobody has ever seen it for themselves. So we see the duo pick on Souji by cooling down in her room with big blocks of ice (she’s sick, you know), getting her white clothes dyed by their coloured clothes when they mix it up in the same washing machine, try out some hotspring flavour in their bathtub (why is it murky colour?), stamping a mark on her forehead that doesn’t seem to come off. Then it’s raining and they ask her to go out and buy candies. They hold her futon at ransom but she’s not perturbed. Till they mention about playing games so she’s up to it. Call the duo bad losers but it looks like Souji is always the one drawing the short end of the stick. Because in the Game of Life, though Souji wins the game, the final card has instructions to go to the convenience store to buy candies for her beloved seniors. Can’t defy what the card says, right? It’s a setup alright… Though it stopped raining, the duo claim they forgot their wallet. Once more, Souji has to take out her own money. But pay her back, okay? I feel that’s not going to happen… Because they can’t decide what kind of nabe to have for dinner, the duo just bought almost everything that comes to mind at the supermarket. That’s not the end of their annoyance yet. They mix everything into the pot! What a waste of that good beef! It’s basically a mess now. When they throw in the lobster, it’s like a murder dish! The last straw came when they put in Souji’s favourite strawberry daifukus. She blows her top and becomes a ‘monster’. Ah. So this is why she’s called the strongest. Hope the idiots learn their lesson. On another day, Souji wants them to take seriously in their exams or else they won’t be her seniors anymore. They assure they’ll always be her senior in her heart. They persuade her to take a break since they have strawberry daifukus. Really? It’s on her. Stingy poker! They still haven’t paid her back the last time yet…

Episode 15: Annihilate Princess
Yoshiaki Mogami loves this era’s peaceful times. But I wonder why she didn’t turn down an invitation by her friends, Mao and Yumi to investigate a haunted house. She’s weak of ghosts, you know. Don’t worry. They’ll bring along an occult member, Murata. She looks like one! Eek!!! Along the way, they see a wanted poster of Masamune. Yoshiaki remembers Masamune always called her ‘aunty’ despite being younger than her. So the creepy adventure into the haunted house begins. Murata senses some energy from the basement but Yoshiaki manages to convince them to look elsewhere first since the door to it is locked. Guess what? They’re going to stay here too! Oh God! The last train has left, right? The corridors look very long to Yoshiaki and she can’t find anyone who wants to sleep with her. Yeah, each room has weird artefacts or torture devices! Can you sleep soundly with those? Then another problem creeps up: Yoshiaki needs to use the toilet! It’s right back where they came. Nobody wants to go with her. Can she hold it in? I don’t how long she held it in but she manages to do her business. Yoshiaki gets more freaked out during dinner (the table items moved – poltergeist?! Or is it just Murata under the table?), the shower water turned rusty (maybe the pipes were rusty. Why is there water running through in the first place?) and Murata just ran off when she senses something and kept saying “There isn’t just one!”. It gets worse when Yumi collapses and Mao is not in her room. Yoshiaki has no choice but to head to the basement to solve it all. But all she finds is Masamune, weakened. After feeding her, she learns she is in hiding and offers to help out by talking to her relative Yoshiteru. But Masamune doesn’t want her to sacrifice her stature for her sake and even so, this doesn’t make her crimes disappear. She wants Yoshiaki to pretend only a black cat has passed here and knocks her out. Yoshiaki wakes up and heads to the roof to shoot fireworks for Masamune (wherever she is) to see. She returns to her friends and is relieved to see Yumi okay (she just had a light concussion) and Mao was sleeping in Yoshiaki’s room all along. They both sleep together. Hey! Where did Murata ran off to?

Episode 16: Blade Adept
Yoshiteru tells Rikyuu that she will be inviting Sekishuusai over for a western tea party. She wants Rikyuu to make a super hot spicy snack that will destroy the mouth! This is for revenge against Sekishuusai’s pranks despite the latter was her student. Sekishuusai arrives and presents Yoshiteru with a sword as a gift. Whether Sekishuusai could sense Yoshiteru is plotting something, she signals that if she were to play any pranks on her, like say, making the snack spicy, she will refuse to give the sword. So no choice, Yoshiteru eats the spicy snack and gets burnt! Sekishuusai isn’t going to let Yoshiteru drink water and makes her admit. Even so, she won’t let her drink directly from the bottle because it’s uncivilized. So when they finally get their chance to drink, Sekishuusai’s lips gets burnt. Yoshiteru pretended to drink the red pepper juice. Right back at ‘ya! They’re going down together! Rikyuu gives them drink water. Since the duo are still loggerheads, they are going to settle this via Russian Roulette. One of the cakes will be spicy and the loser is the one who eats it. They’ll bet their Secret Treasure. Just the mention of that, Nobunaga is right at their doorstep to take that. They have been hearing what Nobunaga is up lately and agrees to form a truce and defeat her. The cake Russian Roulette is already rigged from the start as Rikyuu mentions the spicy ones have the cherry slightly off. Only those with keen eyes can spot it. There are 2 of them so the duo will avoid that. Nobunaga is ushered in and persuaded to play the game. But she can tell that a couple of cakes are rigged and suspects something amiss since the cake is made from them. Yoshiteru has no choice but to have Rikyuu remake the cakes. To spice things up (like they need more of it), Nobunaga suggests to eat with their eyes closed. Now they’re really sweating in their pants. The last one standing gets all the Secret Treasure and Nobunaga is hell confident she’ll win. Sekishuusai goes first and hits the spicy one! Out she goes. Next is Yoshiteru. Safe. Nobunaga’s turn. Safe. Yoshiteru mentions she loves Sekishuusai, the reason why she also tried to play tricks on her (doesn’t it feel like getting back at her?). Sekishuusai also admits the same. She played those tricks because she admires her and wanted to make up by giving the sword. Yoshiteru takes a bite and is safe. Nobunaga hits the spicy one and loses. However Yoshiteru feels lonely if she can’t be with Sekishuusai and has Rikyuu make her very hot tea to knock her out. Nobunaga takes their Secret Treasures and leaves.

Episode 17: Sunshine Ruler
Wait a minute! Isn’t Liu Bei from the Three Kingdoms?! WTF?! Anyway she works as a maid but has a curse: She turns into a pig by night! She is tasked to take care of an old woman named Tae Haruhi. She is known as a maid crusher because all those who worked under her will quit. Liu Bei makes her debut and is given the cold shoulder, even get splashed by water! But that doesn’t stop her as she tends to her garden. Her perseverance to clean up the garden has Tae at least let her inside her home. She is allowed the clean but her room and kitchen are off limits. One night, Liu Bei hears Tae’s nephew threatening to make her sign a contract to sell her house out so he can build a condo. She won’t do it. He’ll be back. She throws her slipper at him but misses and accidentally hit little miss piggy’s head. Tae brings the piggy in, not knowing her true identity and makes friends with her. Her kitchen is messy as she admits she doesn’t know how to cook nor did she do any chores before but doesn’t want to end up in an old folks home. As she feeds piggy, she confesses she likes animals because they can’t talk and she doesn’t have to pretend for them. Once Liu Bei knows the truth, in her human form she gets a little aggressive to clean the forbidden rooms and cook better meals for Tae. Her dual life continues. Maid at day, pig at night. So much so Liu Bei had to tell her to ‘feed the pig proper food’. I guess it works. Soon Tae becomes fond of Liu Bei’s company and she would like her to stay for dinner to meet this pig who often comes around this time. Liu Bei runs off and in the midst turns into a pig. Tae saw everything. The duo are drawn into the dream world whereby Nobunaga takes the pig’s Secret Treasure. But she turns into a pig herself! Liu Bei realizes her curse is cast on her Secret Treasure so with Nobunaga taking it, the curse affected her. However… Nobunaga uses her brute willpower to break free from the curse! Amazing! No curse is going to stop this little devil. Tae’s nephew returns and brought along ruffians to force Tae to sign her consent. Liu Bei protects her by demonstrating her sword skills. And a couple of cool lines of course. I bet those jerks won’t be back again and it’s good that Tae has accepted Liu Bei in her life.

Episode 18: Four Leaves
Bad luck always follows Yoshitsugu Ootani. Her gloomy factory job doesn’t make it better. Even her colleagues snub her and she only has a black cat as a companion. She thought finding a four leaf clover would change her luck but it got worse. More scolding from the supervisor when she slips up. At a loss, she writes to Angel, the author for the book Heaven’s Door who once said that good luck will always be there if you believe it. But she knows it won’t go anywhere because Heaven’s Hill doesn’t exist. It’s a place in heaven, right? One day, she gets a surprise reply from Angel. She tells Yoshitsugu to remain positive and also relates her own string of bad luck which turns out to be lucky coincidences. Soon, the duo start exchanging letters on a frequent note as Angel relates another one of her lucky coincidences whereby she found a movie ticket that almost expired but it turned out to be a horror movie that she disliked. Not wanting to waste it, she used it but regretted the moment she stepped in. But halfway through, the film got burnt and the screen went blank. It was a funny incident so the horror became a comedy for her. Yoshitsugu sends a bookmark as thanks and in return Angel sends another book as gratitude, Stairway To Heaven. Yoshitsugu wants to meet and Angel agrees. She can’t wait to meet her and imagines the kind of person and city she lives on. On the day she’s supposed to take a flight, disaster strikes. She had to help an old lady to hospital since she’s suffering from heart attack. She is then late to buy a ticket but even so, she lost her wallet. Searching didn’t help. The police couldn’t help. They couldn’t meet. Because of that, Angel’s letters stop coming. The seasons pass. No letter. Yoshitsugu becomes upset and smashes her typewriter! Yes, she still has one of those babies. That’s how poor she is. Then she gets a package. An air ticket to see Angel. Yoshitsugu takes a plane to Heaven’s Hill. The place is not what she expects. Like the slums. Standing in front of her room, she is told by the landlady that she has passed away due to overworking for the past 6 months (she never had a strong body and worked overtime to probably pay her medical bills). In her final letter, she apologizes for everything and so much has happened since their last exchange. She reveals on the day she received her first letter, she was about to commit suicide. She decided to write back and notes despite it looked like she cheering up Yoshitsugu, it was Yoshitsugu who has been cheering her and looked forward to the day they meet (so when she couldn’t, I guess it was heartbreak). She thanks her for the best lucky coincidence ever and hopes they’ll always be friends.

Episode 19: Vengeful Fang – IS
Mitsuhide Akechi is a detective as she and her assistant Kibayashi meet up with detective Hirai at the crime scene whereby the headless corpse of the eldest daughter of the 3 Hototogisu sisters, Ayako is found murdered by the riverside. Mitsuhide thought she saw a man in white mask opposite the river watching them. Hirai interrogates Okemi Hazama who is the first suspect because she holds a grudge against Ayako. But Mitsuhide says she isn’t the killer because the way Ayako was killed, it might have been with someone familiar since she was totally defenceless and there were no sleep-induced drugs in her system. The next suspects would be the younger sisters, Meiko and Machiko along with their butler, Henri who is always having a video cam in his hand. But they seem distraught Ayako is dead and would be glad if Mitsuhide help to bring the killer to justice. Mitsuhide revisits the crime scene once more and sees the masked man but was told by a police officer he is Morilanty, a professor of applied criminology. She is advised not to get too close to him. Hirai rings in another suspect. Matsuo Murakumo may look like a beautiful lady but is in fact a cross-dresser. Found with him is a bag with Hototogisu’s family seal and a bundle of cash inside. They think he blackmailed Ayako and killed her. However he denies that even though he is an extortionist, he wouldn’t make such a screwed up mistake. At least he admitted he is an extortionist. Mitsuhide smells the notes and realizes he is not the one. That’s because natto smell is covered on it and it is Meiko’s favourite food. It is discovered that Murakumo was blackmailing Meiko. They go interrogate her as she reveals she is an illegitimate child of another father. If the public discovers this, she won’t inherit the family’s fortune. So Murakumo must have discovered that in an old diary belonging to the father’s wife and blackmailed her.

Mitsuhide discusses with Hirai and Kibayashi the possibility Machiko may be the one putting up Murakumo to blackmail her to take away Meiko’s alibi during the murder. So when Murakumo was dealing with Meiko, Machiko went to kill Ayako. But Henri denies that and Machiko has an alibi. He reveals despite Machiko going on a diet, she secretly had midnight snacks and one night collapsed due to stomach ache from such rendezvous (the food got stale I suppose). She is weakened to a point she won’t be able to kill anybody and he has video camera proof of it. He never told them because Machiko ordered him not to since it would be embarrassing to the family if her midnight snacking is discovered. Since it hurts to conceal the truth, Henri tells them now. Mitsuhide wonders if he is cooking this up to protect Machiko but he is prepared to state this formally if required. Mitsuhide thinks deeper and thinks the headless corpse switched places with Morilanty. She rushes back to the crime scene to see Morilanty there again. She chases and corners him at the cliff. She unmasks him and to her surprise it is Kibayashi behind the mask. Not quite. She says Morilanty isn’t Kibayashi but Kibayashi’s true identity is Morilanty. Isn’t that the same? Another Kibayashi pops up. There are 2 of them? She unmasks herself and is that Morilanty professor with the white mask. They’ve been watching Mitsuhide all this time and points out she is the murderer. Because she is the only one who won’t accept whose body it is despite there is a head. Otherwise, how would the villagers recognize it is her body without the head? Machiko’s statement that she saw Ayako’s body from the chapel and that she didn’t went through much suffering (indicating she had a peaceful look on her face) only makes it more evident. In short, Mitsuhide killed someone dear to her and didn’t want to admit it. Mitsuhide runs back to the chapel and opens the coffin. Ayako’s head is still intact. It is revealed this is actually a stage play as the audience applause this magnificent scene. Mitsuhide is still wallowing in guilt as she is being told to end the play with a sentence (to say her name). Then she wakes up in bed and is shocked when she realizes she has killed Nobunaga.

Episode 20: Vengeful Fang – OS
Mitsuhide runs away from bed and her aide Ranmaru Mori couldn’t do anything about it. Ranmaru bumps into Nobunaga and tells her about Mitsuhide’s condition. She was in coma ever since she saw the flames and couldn’t leave her alone, that’s why she took care of her when she was unconscious in this world. Mitsuhide is absorbed with guilt that she killed Nobunaga. Thinking back, she was in a strategic meeting with her along with Hideyoshi, Ieyasu, Kanetsugu, Sessai and Yoshiteru. Mitsuhide has work to do and wants to take her leave but Nobunaga tells her not to sweat it and do it tomorrow. Nobunaga thinks she’s still upset over that incident. The one whereby Mitsuhide was discussing with her about their battle strategy. She wanted to prepare carefully for this crucial mission but Nobunaga wants to strike while the iron is hot. She insulted Mitsuhide she has no Secret Treasure because she is petty. Ieyasu thought Nobunaga should apologize but that little devil doesn’t think she has done anything wrong. Mitsuhide takes a break in the tea room with Rikyuu. Mitsuhide is depressed that without a Secret Treasure, it is as good as being a nobody in this era. Rikyuu says she doesn’t have to think too much about it. Strong emotions make people strong but they also cause people to suffer. Then Nobunaga enters the room and the tension just got intense. But she had to leave when Ranmaru reports Hideyoshi has something important to talk. Mitsuhide thinks how Nobunaga was always smiling whenever Hideyoshi is nearby. She feels jealous. That jealousy increase when Hideyoshi received Nobunaga’s attention. The dark feelings crept into her heart so much that it formed a Secret Treasure and grew stronger to more it feeds on it. Even so, she strangely loved it.

One day, Mitsuhide thought she would be able to win Nobunaga’s approval if she leads the next final battle to victory. To her horror, Nobunaga changes her mind and put Hideyoshi in charge instead. That was the last straw. Later Ieyasu talks to Nobunaga about that decision. Because it is the last battle, she wanted to keep Mitsuhide near her. Once this battle is over, she will have achieved her dream and her conquest is over for good. Thus Ieyasu guessed she wants the person she trusted most by her side. I suppose Nobunaga is a tsundere and couldn’t tell Mitsuhide that so she wants Ieyasu to keep it a secret. But it’s too late because anger has got the better of Mitsuhide as she sets the place on fire. Maybe that’s why everyone in that era got transported to the modern age. Back in present time, Mitsuhide’s wandering has her bump into Rikyuu. The latter takes her in when she collapses. Mitsuhide wakes up in Rikyuu’s room and is being told Nobunaga is still alive and going around collecting Secret Treasures. Mitsuhide now remembers everything and thinks her amnesia was because she couldn’t admit what she had done. Speaking of Nobunaga, here she comes looking for another Secret Treasure. She didn’t expect it to be Mitsuhide but nevertheless will take it from her. Mitsuhide isn’t going to put up a fight and voluntarily gives it to her since her Secret Treasure filled with darkness may be of use to her even if this means goodbye forever. Suddenly she has a change of mind and won’t give it to her and runs away. Rikyuu obstructs Nobunaga, who threatens she can’t guarantee her life if she continues to be in the way. Rikyuu is willing to lay down her life because Mitsuhide is a dear friend and a fellow student in the way of the tea. Mitsuhide continues running…

Episode 21: Calvary Queen
The Russian space agency staffs realize an artificial intelligence, Vesna 9000 has taken over some orbital lasers and plan to destroy Earth. How can they request for help in this short amount of time? Luckily, Shingen Takeda wakes up on the space station Nadhokha and picks up the transmission in one of the units. They need her to neutralize Vesna that operates Nadhokha. They guide her to Fasad 29, a support droid that will be able to help her. Seems Fasad is somewhat disappointed that it isn’t Mikhail who came to wake him up. He feels he isn’t the kind of person to break a promise and his loyalty means he won’t work with her. But the space guys download the current situation to him so Fasad agrees to help her out. If you’re wondering why Fasad looks like a hot water dispenser, that’s because he is only good in making tea! Oh dear. And calculations. Ah well. That’s fine since Shingen notes she is good in everything else except maths. So starts the journey of woman and robot as they make their way to Vesna. Exchanging wise cracks along the way. Fasad sees Shingen take out several guard droids sent by Vesna with her bare hands! Wow! That’s the wind power? She claims she can take out 50 of those. If using AK-47 didn’t work, she uses her fan to disable them all! Don’t mess with her! With this so called forest power she claims. She even uses the flame thrower to burn the guard droids. That’s her fire power… Haha… Right before the chamber to Vesna, they are ambushed by more guard droids. That doesn’t look like 50 but hey, Shingen did say she was bad with calculations. Run!

They hide in a pod area whereby Shingen gets a feeling that getting outside in a pod will make things work out despite it will restrict her movements. Fasad notes how she is similar to Mikhail because they act on intuition or gut feeling. He continues telling her about Mikhail and his favourite Japanese chicken wings. Once they enter the pod and prepare to head to space, the air pressure sucks the guard droids out into space. So this was her plan? The hatch will lead to Vesna but Shingen can’t activate it since there is no air and the pod is too big to enter this chamber. It is pointless to send Fasad in too seeing there is nothing much he can do. Shingen gets an idea to do a dangerous stunt. They’ll use blast of the pod’s ejection blast to enter the hatch. In that crucial 15 seconds, they’ll seal it close. Phew. They made it. Once inside the core, Vesna wants to negotiate with Shingen. A sign that it can’t win over Shingen? Vesna proposes that they team up and will conquer the world together. It’s her dream as a Sengoku general, right? However Shingen refuses her offer since it is boring. She would rather work with Fasad to conquer the world with chicken wings. She isn’t interested in the cold world she would get if Vesna conquers Earth. So Shingen beats up the core till it shuts down! Wow. I understand why people hit their machines to work but this… As promised, Shingen is given a ride back down to Earth with Fasad guiding her. Fasad wonders if she’ll look for other Sengoku generals once she touches down but she says she would like to open a chicken wing restaurant. She’s already got a name figured out: Takeda Wing Army. Lame. But Fasad would like to help her since she isn’t good with numbers.

Episode 22: The Splendor
Higurashi is assigned to track and arrest Masamune since he is under a special department that counters threats from the Sengoku generals and was the one who first arrested her. Kojurou Katakura is also made to be his partner and she is bent on arresting Masamune for her crimes. Though Higurashi has no problem working with her, he just had this thought that she wants to meet up and run away with Masamune. Of course Kojurou denies that she wants Masamune caught and to atone for her crimes even if it’s a person close to her. He calls her a cold woman. They go around interviewing their leads (the yakuza boss Katakura is now a farmer?) and word has it that Masamune is viewed as a hero who saved them and they’re not happy the police wants to arrest her. Higurashi talks to Yoshiaki as he believes she and Masamune were once rivals to the throne. However to Kojurou’s shock, Yoshiaki roots for Masamune. Higurashi deduces if Kojurou’s information was correct it could only mean Yoshiaki met Masamune in this era and her perception changed. Higurashi is suave to persuade Yoshiaki to reveal any info on Masamune. The last she met her was at the abandoned haunted house but doesn’t know where she went after that. After they leave, Kojurou notes he resorted to lying to get information and wonders if he is a lolicon since the different treatment between them. Higurashi points out Masamune did something against the law and yet she’s popular. But Kojurou is doing something good but nobody likes her. Then he gets a call that Masamune has been spotted living in a fishing village. But upon arrival, they are greeted by Keiko who is in Masamune’s funeral. Keiko breaks down while explaining how Masamune was cornered by a local police at the cliff and was shot before falling off. Higurashi insists Kojurou accompany Keiko in her grievance while he talks to the villagers.

Once Higurashi is done, he tells Kojurou that Masamune is really dead and the villagers’ story do not contradict. She asks about if her body was found. Of course not. Nobody could’ve survived that fall and the dangerous currents below. Pointing out the cold woman she is, if she was a friend, she wouldn’t have asked about the body. There was a point he believed she was prepared to betray him and escape with Masamune. Higurashi retires to his room while Kojurou visits the crime scene. As she blurts out her feelings to the sea, suddenly Masamune appears behind her. They both embrace. Isn’t she supposed to be dead? The villagers lied on her behalf. If the police thinks she’s dead, they’ll stop looking. It might be the wrong thing to do tricking everyone but she wasn’t going to get arrested before she gets a chance to apologize to Kojurou. Masamune says sorry for being deceived by the yakuza and soiled her reputation. She asks Kojurou to run away with her. She won’t become her partner in crime. Masamune can’t change her lifestyle. Higurashi is flushed out from behind the rocks by Masamune. Seems this was all part of his plan to wait for them to meet. He felt something was off when the villagers were cold to him and a funeral was held right on the day Masamune fell off a cliff. Weird, don’t you think? Masamune won’t let him go if he plans to arrest Kojurou as a traitor. But he rather tell his boss she escaped than die trying to arrest her. He plans to report that Masamune died falling off a cliff and Kojurou resigns after that. Even if he’s supposed to do his job, that was before he know what Sengoku generals are like. He orders Kojurou to stay by Masamune’s side and watch over her. He apologizes for calling her a cold woman and makes her blush by complimenting her beautiful smile. Masamune and Kojurou reunite and they head off somewhere where they could always be together.

Episode 23: The Dune
Narrated like a historical document, it tells of Tsunehisa Amago‘s entry to a kindergarten and the battlefield that is no other than the sandbox. She makes friends with Shimizu who somehow felt like serving her like a ruler. He shares her dream of making a huge sand castle in the sandbox. However the sandbox is ruled by 3 different factions: Matsuda, Enya and Misawa. In her first attempt to rule the sandbox, she approaches Matsuda who claims he makes the biggest mud balls. Tsunehisa decides to show him how to make a real one and though it starts out tiny, slowly it grows and becomes hard and shiny like a black pearl. Matsuda wants to learn it from her and thus you can say his group are under her control. However Enya didn’t like her growing influence and declines to join her in making her sand castle. A mud war started when he stomps and destroys a mud ball. Tsunehisa’s group is clearly at a disadvantage in terms of numbers so Tsunehisa and Shimizu ends the war by spraying water at Enya’s faction. Tsunehisa teaches Enya and his group the finer points in making the base of a sand castle so it’s safe to say Enya is now her ally. Of course this doesn’t sit well with Misawa so she tells the teacher about Tsunehisa’s mischief when she sprayed Enya with water. Because of that, she was prohibited to play in the sandbox for a day. Shimizu was out with a cold, the reason he wasn’t there to defend her. Tsunehisa tries to negotiate with Misawa but the latter drives a hard bargain. She won’t allow their groups to switch the sandbox every 3 days (she needs this long to build her sand castle) and will only allow 2 days the most. Plus, Misawa doesn’t agree about everyone is being creative. Otherwise, it would’ve been better for everyone to build many little sand castles of their own instead of a big one. Negotiations failed.

In a final attempt to gain control of the sandbox, a game of Avalanche (Misawa terms it as Knocking Down Sticks) is played. Players take turns taking away the mountain of sand and if the stick in the middle falls on one’s turn, that player loses. Misawa is lucky to go first and this means she has a big advantage. Because so, to be fair, Tsunehisa is allowed to choose a stick and she chose a twig with leaves. But this gives her an advantage as she is able to feel the sand mountain and measure the depth of the twig being stuck into the mound. However when the game starts, Misawa’s practice paid off as she takes a big chunk and the twig still stands. The girls dig piece by piece when the teacher calls for nap time. Misawa realizes this is all part of Tsunehisa’s plan and cries foul. However Tsunehisa points out that it was her who used the teacher first (Misawa’s dumbfounded face is too funny!). Besides, it is Misawa’s turn. Thus Misawa couldn’t sleep because if her twig falls, she loses. That’s why Tsunehisa chose one with leaves because it will be unstable on this windy day. But if that twig doesn’t fall, Tsunehisa is sure to lose on the next move so she too can’t sleep. Halfway through nap time, worried Misawa gets up and sees the twig fallen (yet another dumbfounded funny look!). Thus the sandbox has fallen under Tsunehisa’s complete control. Everyone works hard to build the castle using Tsunehisa’s great architectural skills and blueprint. Shimizu hands her an apple to add icing to the cake. The magnificent Apple Castle is finally finished with even a flowing moat. Suddenly all their hard work is ruined when Nobunaga barges in to take Tsunehisa’s Secret Treasure. She trampled all over the sand castle! Wouldn’t it be weird for her to point her sword at a little girl? Tsunehisa starts crying followed by everyone. This stuns Nobunaga as the kids start pelting her with mud balls. I guess she has to retreat when the kids are going to get her and the teacher threatens to call the police over this pervert’s intrusion. Oh Nobunaga. You win some, you lose some.

Episode 24: Peaceful Empress – EX
Ieyasu has become an ultra miracle super idol! She even won awards and is on her way to become a top actress! However she is feeling the burnout and needs a break but her manager feels the need to carry on or else she will be knocked off her perch. Low on energy? Switch to solar! She’s not a robot! Naturally when the cat’s away, the mouse starts to play. Ieyasu goofs off before snoozing. A fan impersonating as a janitor, Kaoru Taniyama enters her room to retrieve a hidden camera but was caught by Ieyasu red handed. He runs away but bumps into a lady in red. She throws a camera into his janitor trolley before running away. A group of ‘cops’ continue to chase her. Ieyasu manages to get back the camera from him so Kaoru regrets and confesses that he is a big fan of hers. To make his day, he signs an autograph on his shirt. When Ieyasu is called for a shoot, Kaoru notices a camera on the ground and when he plays it, realizes it’s the hidden camera on Ieyasu. So the one Ieyasu got was… Meanwhile the lady in red is cornered by the ‘cops’. They threaten her to return the camera or else. As Ieyasu continues to lay idle instead of memorizing her script, she thought Kaoru didn’t learn his lesson when he returns. Seems he wants to see the camera that he handed to her. Suddenly they see the lady in red falling down right outside their window! Holy crap! The ‘cops’ report to their boss they have taken care of the woman but he still wants the video found. Ieyasu and Kaoru see the video as it turns out to be a confession by the lady in red. She has proof that the famous actor, Tatsuya Sugimura is actually the boss of a criminal syndicate dealing with drugs and weapons smuggling. And Ieyasu is supposed to star alongside him in an upcoming shoot.

Kaoru notices the ‘cops’ looking around and he is going to escape alone and bring this evidence to the police as he doesn’t want to get her involved. However she is adamant to go with him and in a disguise she sneaks him out. However the baddies aren’t stupid and corner them in the parking lot. They’re not afraid to use the gun. Or else. Ieyasu is daring as she even admits she has seen the video. They make a run for it as the baddies give chase. Kaoru would gladly resign to his fate to die for his idol but Ieyasu tells him he can be a master of his own fate instead. Here’s one chance now. She takes him and jumps down the building! They land in a truck filled with empty boxes. Was that fate? Or was it luck? In the truck when Kaoru praises and looks up to her, Ieyasu lets him know that she isn’t enjoying what she’s doing lately. It’s no fun anymore. That’s why she wanted to follow him. The duo arrive at the police station and hand over the evidence to the police chief. To their shock, the chief comes back with the baddies! He’s in cohorts with them! Cornered at the rooftop, the biggest crook makes his entry. Sugimura is going to make this the most entertaining drama she will have to act out. The idol queen succumbed to pressure of fame and jumped off the roof with a fan. Before the baddie could fire, the place is surrounded by helicopters. SWAT people slide down to arrest the guilty ones and it seems Ieyasu’s manager is an undercover agent. Interpol has been keeping a close eye on Sugimura for some time. In the aftermath, Ieyasu bids farewell to Kaoru at the train station. He’ll always be her fan and advises her to do what she wants, live the way she wants. Before the train door closes, she jumps in and wants to tag along. This turns out to be a movie shoot. Later Hiroshi asks if she has considered quitting the industry as she has achieved her dream of being a top idol. Let’s say she’s going to reach for the space even after conquering the world’s tallest mountains. She’s going to keep her word of being a top idol. Meanwhile in New York, ex-idol Rosary is making waves in Broadway. Ieyasu will continue to follow her path because the one who makes the most people happy is the one who does the best for himself or herself.

Episode 25: Marshal Princess
Yoshimoto is bored and tired of being locked up because she wants her rematch with Nobunaga. Sessai reminds her how bad she was defeated the last time they fought. Yoshimoto is confident she has powered up but I suppose Nobunaga too must have undergone some training. Sessai has Kotarou keep Yoshimoto busy with sweets. But Kotarou is dumb to do online shopping because it reveals their secret location! Don’t worry. She didn’t give out the address. How can the goods arrive then?! She didn’t think about that. So after making Kotarou buy all the sweets in the list, though it keeps Yoshimoto occupied, Sessai feels the need to solve her sedentary unhealthy lifestyle. Kotarou accompanies Yoshimoto to the woods where they see Soun undergo intense training. Kotarou introduces Yoshimoto to fishing and is confident that it’s so easy that idiots can do it. So Yoshimoto is an idiot? Anyway you can say Yoshimoto lacks talent in fishing. Either she throws the hook away from the target or she accidentally hooks her own skirt. But that didn’t make her give up and continues to fish and fish. At the end of the day, she manages to catch a little carp. Yeah, she was putting up so much struggle with it. But she’s happy with it and this leads her to study and research more in-depth about fishing, baits and anything related. She’s like a fishing maniac now. So much so her perseverance pays off and can fish like a pro. One morning while fishing in the lake, she sees a giant golden carp. Thinking it is the master of this lake, she prepares to catch it but realizes ordinary baits or traps won’t work. She even made a bait using the sweets! Do carps eat that? Didn’t work either. But she didn’t give up and stood at the same place day and night. Not until the fifth day that she feels something tugging her rod. She fights with it but it snaps. Yoshimoto ponders why it took it this long to show up when she did not change her position or bait. Then she realizes she let her guard down. If she can erase her catching intent, she may be able to reel it in. She starts meditating through rain and shine. Finally when she’s able to face the lake’s master once more, she suddenly felt this inner peace and the beauty of the universe. Though Yoshimoto lost, she realizes that was what it was trying to teach her: The simplicity of the world. Sessai also knows she has fished up something better and Yoshimoto guessed this was Sessai’s plan all along to improve her lack of conviction. Now that she is ready, Sessai orders Kotarou to call Soun and will launch a full scale attack on Nobunaga. Yoshimoto is fired up for revenge, Soun is fired up to avenge and Nobunaga is lazily sleeping on her hammock. Some training she had.

Episode 26: Sengoku Collection
Nobunaga receives a letter from Ageha to meet up. Once they do, the first thing Nobunaga did was to knee kick her gut! Seems she knows this Ageha is fake because of the way she addressed her. She is Kotarou in disguise and Nobunaga doesn’t let her finish her introduction as she sticks another kick into her face. Poor girl. As expected, this is a trap by Yoshimoto to get her revenge. Yoshimoto is able to control the water as Nobunaga is made to run about. Her problem is compounded when Soun enters the fray with her flame power. Water and fire. Mmm… This is tricky. Kotarou shows that she isn’t useful in playing dead so she holds on to Nobunaga’s leg so that Yoshimoto can steal away her sword. How many more kicks can that ninja girl take? Yoshimoto revels in victory and wants Soun to finish her off. However she lost motivation since Nobunaga was so easily defeated! What the hell?! She’s sulking! Yoshimoto is about to finish the job herself when Mitsuhide intercepts. The duo team up to fight back and Soun gets her fighting spirit back. Just when Yoshimoto and Soun think they’ve got the duo trap and unleash their ultimate power, looks like they miss and Nobunaga turns the tables on them. Sessai guesses that the only way left is to surrender. Nobunaga is going to take their Secret Treasure but Yoshimoto refuses. Upon Sessai and Soun’s advice to admit defeat and try again another day, I guess it’s end of the road for now. Nobunaga prepares to take their Secret Treasure (hey! Does she not want Kotarou’s Secret Treasure?), Mitsuhide hijacks her and takes them as her own. Because Nobunaga is collecting all the Secret Treasures to return home, it means Mitsuhide will be left behind. She doesn’t want that and if she’s going to stay, Nobunaga will too. Mitsuhide runs away as she vows to collect all the other Secret Treasures. As Nobunaga gives chase, looks like another girl, Beethoven comes dropping out of the sky. Welcome to this era, kid.

In the aftermath, we see all the Sengoku generals and currently what they are doing (along with some of the minor side characters that aren’t Sengoku generals). Obviously, so as not to forget that they were there. So I’ll just mention the notable ones. Soun returns to Jun and that girl is glad to have Shinkurou back. She did say she keeps her promises, right? Yoshiteru and Sekishuusai are getting along pretty well. Bokuden is really in a movie featuring kappas. Liu Bei and Tae continue to sick with each other. Shingen and Fasad are running a chicken wing stall while Gennai runs a nearby store with her contraptions (I hope it doesn’t fail this time). Toshizou and Isami continue to annoy Souji. Till they are made to remember how ferocious she can be when she’s mad. Yoshimoto, Sessai and Kotarou soak in the hotspring. You thought Ittousai has levelled up and going crazy taking out several guard droids in space. But it turns out to be a film helm by Morse. Ieyasu continues to rise in the idol world. Lastly, it is mind blowing that Nobunaga has been chasing Mitsuhide for the entire day! Aren’t they tired? Well, they are now. They collapse at the park, catch their breath, smile at each other and hold hands. Can I assume that they are back on good terms?

Sengoku Cosplay
Looks like they’ll be staying in the modern era for the time being. I’m not sure how many more Secret Treasures they need to collect just to return but from the look of it, it is going to take a lot more. Well, not every episode has Nobunaga usurping the Sengoku general and stealing her Secret Treasure. That will be tad too boring and predictable. This makes me wonder how many Sengoku generals did arrive into this era. Well, the Miko trio certainly didn’t make it clear how many exactly is needed. How much is a lot? Besides, don’t you think that if Nobunaga actually manages to return to her own time and being the only one, wouldn’t that upset the time paradox thingy? Look at it this way. If the generals weren’t in the past but thrown into the future, then there would be no outcome of the war and thus a different future all together, right? I better not confuse myself thinking about this. And with many of the generals losing their Secret Treasure and planning to stay in the modern world for the rest of their lives, how would this impact the past? Imagine the past without any of these Sengoku generals. Yeah. Peace and quiet.

I know I said I shouldn’t be thinking too hard but the other thing that bugs me is the acceptance of the modern people of these newly arrived Sengoku generals. Shouldn’t the people be in awe and surprise, acting like they’ve seen an alien crashing into the midst of their society even though they are still humans and just from a different era? It’s like nobody makes a big deal out of it (except for that fake documentary by Morse). It’s like you’re telling me that when the Sengoku generals come, you accept them. Aren’t you curious to know about them? Sure, it is good that we see them getting used to life and interacting normally with some of the minor characters (I guess it’s better than being treated as a hostile alien), but that just feels too suspicious. Unless you’re also telling me that the people in this modern age are apathetic. Well, that seems to be more like it especially in Keiji’s story that the usual normal people don’t really give a damn when one is in trouble. That’s why you need mysterious vigilantes to uphold the peace. So that means if aliens from another planet start living among us, we don’t mind it too, huh?

I guess this anime is good in the sense that you can watch most of the episodes as stand alone as they are usually independent of each other. Each has a different story to spice up the variety. However I have mixed feelings to some of the short stories because not all of them are that good. There are some that I find boring (Ieyasu, Kenshin and Kanetsugu, Yoshiaki) and some to be quite interesting (Bokuden, Masamune, Hisahide, Tsunehisa). There are also funny ones that tickle the bone (Novel Deciders, Blade Adept and Shingen especially her interaction with Fasad) and odd ones too (Hideyoshi, Mitsuhide, Liu Bei – the pig curse part). I was this close in classifying Yoshitsugu’s arc into the boring category, the way it was dragging things. But the revelation and very sad tearful end changed my mind. I guess you could say that this is the only episode whereby my emotions flutter from one end to another quickly when the pace started to change.

As for the Sengoku characters, the myriad and colourful personalities are about the same as their colourful outfits they wear. Sometimes I can’t help think that the way they dress makes them look more like cosplayers than Sengoku generals. Don’t you think? I mean look at some of them. Yoshitsugu almost looks like a mummy girl. Bokuden looks like a little devil! Do those little bat wings really attach to her body? Anybody who likes maids would definitely pay attention to Soun (like me). Anybody who loves ninjas would identify with Kotarou and Ranmaru. Yoshimoto’s general outfit is made sexier by the fact that perhaps her boobs are too big that they had to cut the bottom of the breast part to let it ‘hang and breathe’. I think Nobunaga’s outfit can also be considered as sexy. So there you have it, a bevy of beautiful ladies not only in different outfits but across all ages too. We have adorable lolis, pretty teenagers and matured women to satisfy viewers with different taste in women. Unless you love women and thus love them all! Just no grandma. Come to think of it, if little girls like Tsunehisa, Yoshiaki and Bokuden can become Sengoku generals, what kind of a world do they live in? It is already mind blowing that men don’t exist in their time so unless you tell me it’s some parallel world thingy then maybe it would be more believable. Because in the modern era, there are men all around, right? So how can it not men be not in the past? Don’t tell me they don’t exist yet ;p. And for some of the Sengoku generals to be taking up different types of occupations from idols to sword instructors to models and students, wow, it shows that they can do more than just fight and adapt quickly to the current age. I guess everyone has that hidden inner potential waiting for a chance to shine.

Because of the many characters (not even counting the minor ones from the modern world), some do not make many screen time appearances and only appear once (do not count the final episode end credits). So to say that their character isn’t properly fleshed out is not accurate because since the story is sufficient for one episode, the character itself would also be sufficient for one episode. Like Bashou, Gennai, Hisahide, Kenji, Liu Bei, the Novel Deciders trio, Shingen, Kojurou, Tsunehisa and Zenjubou. It feels like they come and go. You see them, watch them, then forget about them once their role is over. Some appear twice or thrice like Ieyasu, Yoshiteru and Sekishuusai. Slightly more would be Mitsuhide, Yoshimoto and Soun. If you want to put all of the Sengoku generals in then I figure 50 episodes won’t even be enough. So you will notice that some characters don’t get an episode of their own like Rikyuu, Ittousai, Kotarou and Sessai. Of course Nobunaga as the main star has the most appearance but even so that isn’t in every episode. Her haughty and arrogant attitude is perhaps what drives her to be the best. How can Japan’s greatest conqueror achieve success if she’s a wuss? As for Mitsuhide, I felt she is just a confused girl. Torn between her love and loyalty for Nobunaga. I guess in the end she really decided that she wants to be with her no matter where she goes. The Miko trio are also a mystery because they make their cameo appearances in nearly every episode. Usually as unimportant extra characters. You can easily spot them because their animal features stand out like a sore thumb. I don’t know, their cameo gives a feeling of “Oh! We’re here! We’re here! Spot us! Spot us!”.

While I have no qualms about the drawing and art of the characters as they look like your typical Japanese kawaii anime girls, I can’t say the same for the background and scenery. If you don’t pay attention, you may not notice it but sometimes it is to a point whereby it is too obvious. It is like somebody couldn’t finish the artwork in time so much so they let some kids do the sketching and there you have the sketch-like background and scenery you see in each episode. It got from bad to worse in Yoshitsugu’s episode so much so I thought the producers may have given up on putting quality in the backdrops. But I feel that such ‘poor quality’ art was to reflect the slums and depression in that episode. Well, this series is a collaboration of Brain Base which brought us Mawaru Penguindrum (another series that has unique art visuals), Baccano, Kamisama Dolls, Spice And Wolf and Tonari No Kaibutsu-kun. Another thing I noticed is that, though it is not apparent in every episode, most of the episodes you can see some round flower mark or something equivalent to it on the screen. I may be wrong but I think those are the family crest and emblem of the Sengoku warriors and I’m not sure why they serve as huge watermarks in the background. I thought it is somewhat annoying sometimes because it distracts you. For the mid-intermission, the Sengoku general featured in that episode will have her mug featured in a monotone picture. The first one seems okay but come the second picture, it has a little fanservice because the girls are nude (or close to it) and in sexy/tempting positions. Don’t worry, the necessary parts are covered/blocked/not shown.

Due to the nature of each episode serving as a standalone and mini story of its own, there is an extensive of seiyuus cast to play the many characters from the main ones to supporting characters and even the extra roles. And boy, there are many of them. Those I recognize include Mamiko Noto as Kenshin (Enma Ai in Jigoku Shoujo), Yui Horie as Liu Bei (Kotori in Da Capo), Kana Hanazawa as Ieyasu (Kobato in Kobato), Eri Kitamura as Tsunehisa (Karen in Bakemonogatari), Miyuki Sawashiro as Zenjubou (Himeko Inaba in Kokoro Connect), Ai Shimizu as Yoshimoto (Ren in DearS), Youko Hikasa as Mitsuhide (Mio in K-ON!) and Ryoko Shintani as Shingen (Rihoko in Amagami SS). I guess it will be a pain to list down the rest so I’ll just state the notable ones that include Rumi Ookubo as Nobunaga (Chinatsu in YuruYuri), Ayumi Tsunematsu as Masamune (Maiya in Fate/Zero), Kaori Nazuka as Hideyoshi (Yui in To Love-Ru), Mai Nakahara as Kanetsugu (Mai in Mai-HiME), Rina Satou as Yoshiteru (Haruka in Minami-ke), Ryou Hirohashi as Soun (Alice in Aria The Animation), Masumi Asano as Keiji (Hakufu in Ikkitousen) and Hisahide (Motoko in Ghost In The Shell). Other seiyuus having small parts that I recognize include Ai Nonaka as Ai (Fuura in Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei), Ami Koshimizu as Kotarou (Horo in Spice And Wolf), Kana Ueda as Ageha (Rin in Fate/Stay Night), Rie Kugimiya as Misawa (Happy in Fairy Tail) and Tsubasa Yonaga as Kaoru (Nova in Arcana Famiglia). Some like Atsuko Ai Shimizu and Kana Hanazawa do portray extra roles but those are minor one off characters so if your ears are sharp enough, you’ll recognize them.

The first opening theme by ABCHO is Me Wo Toshite Gyusshi Yo which is a rock outfit with a little bit of techno in it. The first ending theme is Unlucky Girl by Sweety and is very swing-like. Sometimes it makes me want to shuffle my feet. Sweety also sings for the second opening theme, Back Into My World. The song is sung with her powerful vocals and you can hear the pounding of the piano in the background despite being ‘covered’ by the strings. For the second ending theme, Darling To Madonna by Yuu Kikkawa feels likes anime rock pop mix with some vocal effects. There are a couple of insert songs with Kana Hanazawa doing Love Scope and Yuka Terasaki singing Misty Moon. Though there are a variety of background music, I happen to notice that the main ones lean towards the swing genre.

Considering that they have already made Sengoku generals adapt to our modern lifestyle, I am pondering if they are ever going to make another sequel or at least a spin-off, I’m thinking that they would be putting in characters from other eras. I mean, they already had one from Romance of the Three Kingdoms and though the latest one at the end I am not sure if she is that famous German composer, but there’s a possibility that they may even have classical music composers and gasp, past American Presidents coming into this era of modern technology. It would definitely be an eyebrow raiser to see the woman side in Mozart, Chopin and Bach, not to mention George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Thomas Jefferson. Scorn them or love them. How about mashing in Greek and Roman Gods, European fairytales and famous comic book superheroes as well? Think I’m going too far overboard? Yeah, that will be one hell of a massive collection then.

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