And here’s the still rather delayed round 2, in which I’ll look briefly at Ookamikakushi and Sora no Woto.
This was the show I believe I was most anticipating from the Winter/Spring 2010 lineup.
Ookamikakushi obviously has its claws in the mystery genre. Hiroshi, his author father and wheelchair-bound younger sister Kana have recently moved to a new town known for its age old religion involving a wolf deity and a special kind of citrus fruit (that resembles a mandarin, but apparently isn’t). Shortly after arriving, Hiroshi is instantly glomped by a hyper-energic girl called Isuzu.
Similarily, during his first school day as a new transfer student, he is FAR more popular (with guys & girls) than his fairly average personality and looks would suggest, apparently for no reason.
That is, except for one girl, Nemuru, whom it seems is well known for her less than social nature; and makes it quite clear that she despises his very existance. Despite this, her presence is highly commanding, and she manages to scare others away.
Whilst Hiroshi is walking around town with Isuzu, we also learn that this town is split into an old and new area. Apparently, some did not like the idea of expansion, and so moved to the old town, the area across the river. These old town people hate new town people. We also learn that no shop is open after 7 and people are rarely on the streets after 8: the towns nightlife is apparently absent.
Finally, we see the guy who got strangely scared of Nemuru before being chased among alleyways. He is a werewolf (?) perhaps as he reacts to seeing the blood moon. But before anything happens, he is cut down by a masked white haired girl. With her mask off, she strongly resembles Nemuru gone albino. The next day, Hiroshi asks why that guys desk has gone. Nemuru curtly arrives and informs Hiroshi that he has moved town.
Naturally, it seems almost a given that Nemuru is actually the wolf-goddess described in the legends; and it is possible that the construction of the new town has also come hand in hand with some kind of curse? We also see some slightly crazy Isuzu in the intro (that is…slightly more crazy than usual, so that is obvious forshadowing).
I’m not 100% sold on it with just the first episode, but I have got the second and third to digest yet, and I am noticeably interested.
Sora no Woto
This follows a girl called Kanata, whom, in her childhood (as a war orphan?), saw a woman whom was a military herald. This apparently inspired her to join the army so that she could be taught to play an instrument.
When she arrives at her new assignment, the town is in preparation for a grand festival to celebrate fire maidens whom apparently doused themselves in water and continually embraced a vicious fire demon in order to protect the town. Since she is early, she wanders around town and gets herself doused in wine.
After this, another girl, Rio (whom we eventually learn is her superior and sempai) lets her use the bath and clean her uniform. During this time we notice that Kanata has really good hearing and discerns different tones really well, as demonstated in her listening to her sempai’s rining bell. Unfortunately, a thieving owl steals the bell. Kanata goes after it as she still has time before having to report in.
Eventually, she succeeds, but gets hopelessly lost in a nearby valley in the process. She decides to call for help by blowing her trumpet.
The older girl from before, Rio, is actually dressed up to be the fire maiden in festival, and hears Kanata blaring on her trumpet in the valley. Some of the people think this is surprisingly like another prophecy related to the festival.
Anyway, Kanata is rescued, waking up the next morning after passing out in the valley. Rio reprimands her but isn’t too mad since her bell was recovered in the process. We learn that the garrison is called the Time-Telling Fortress because it has a really nice view of the sunrise and it apparently their duty there to play various morning calls. Rio promises to teach Kanata how to be a good trumpeteer. Unfortunately, at the moment, she is total crap, as the townspeople laugh to themselves at her blaring from the fortess.
Could be interesting, this one. Has a relaxing pace and concept to it. I imagine Kanata will eventually become amazing, or something. Again, it’s not entirely caught my attention yet (depends on where they take it), but its got potential.
Thats all for now.
Ah yeah, I’ve decided after watching the next few Baka no Test episodes that I’m almost certainly not going to bother with it anymore. Lack of sense/plot, a rampant abundance of gratuitous homosexuality, and characters that are too cookie-cutter generic have made me facepalm one too many times, I think. The whole summoned creatures part actually seems surprisingly tacked on, which is a bit of a shame since I reckon it could have been the show’s saving grace if had been done well…
Next up will be Durarara! and Ladies vs. Butlers, when I get around to watching them. As you might imagine, crushing schedule and backlog do not a good update situation make. But stay tuned anyway, yeah?