This Art Club Has A Problem Episode 2 – Scenes Outside the Art Room

We’re back with the second week of Yomu’s amazing collaboration and this week we have more fun themes to pick from. I decided to focus on scenes outside the art room thinking there’d only be a couple given I’ve been busier this week and then I watched the episode. Well, almost all of it takes place outside the art room. On the other hand, I enjoyed this episode significantly more than episode one so there’s a plus. Allow me now to walk you through This Art Club Has a Problem Episode 2: Scenes Outside of the Art Room.

We begin our episode with an exterior shot of the school (I assume) before we transition to a long corridor lined with windows and four girls walking side by side toward us.

In another story I might think this was some kind of show of power the way the girls spread themselves across the entire walkway but here with all the glass, reflections, and general drab colour going on in this scene, they mostly look tiny and insignificant. When we zoom in on their conversation in which one of Usami’s friends gives her a false horoscope, that impression is more of less confirmed.

As to why the corridor needs to be so long or we needed this long shot of the girls, I’m really not entirely certain.

There is a transition in between where we see what happens inside the art room, but our next external to the art room scene involves Usami reaching the end of that hallway, bidding her friends goodbye and then eyeing off the clearly acting suspiciously Uchimaki.

Smooth, real smooth.

With no clue what has transpired inside the room Usami is puzzled by his behaviour but also impatient to get inside the room. The exchange between the two is therefore brief but it does yield this corridor shot where we realise that speaking characters are not the only people who exist in this school, and that every hallway is equally drab as the one we started in.

Again some stuff happens inside the art room but the outcome of that is we end up at some sort of exhibit where Uchimaki’s art work is on display as it has been awarded second place in some competition. Usami is annoyed that it got a place and Uchimaki is upset that it only got second. The President is just kind of there, an ongoing theme for his appearances.

What should be noted though is that the exhibit is as poorly attended as the school seems to be and equally drab in its choice of colour scheme.

And so ends the first of three stories that will be told in this episode.

The second story begins again with an exterior shot of Usami’s house (again, I guess) before we transition to seeing her in bed and discussing Uchimaki with her friend. We don’t get much of a view of the room though what we do see of it implies there’s a lot of books stacked about and that the bed is really too narrow for the two girls to be sharing it.

The friend ultimately manages to get Usami talking about why she likes Uchimaki and we go into an extended flashback of a mission the two went on to buy paint. How extended? Well the friend falls asleep before it is over. Kind of a shame really given it was a fairly good story.

The basic outline goes that Uchimaki used all the paint to produce waifus and so Usami and Uchimaki had to go buy paint supplies. Naturally, in anime world, that means Uchimaki carries all the supplies and complains about their weight despite there being only two fairly thin bags in his hands, and Usami makes dated comments about gender roles (okay, that might have been a little catty).

While they are walking we transition to a sunset scene, because why not, and then we get to the crux of the story. A mother beseeches them to find her missing child and the two set off on a search and rescue operation.

Actually, finding the child isn’t as difficult as convincing the child they are actually there to help her, not aided by a masked primary schooler who turns the conversation weird. Anyway, Uchimaki draws a picture of the girls mother to reassure her that they are going to help her find her mother and off they go. We transition back to Usami’s bedroom and the sleeping friend and so the second story ends.

The third and final story involves Usami turning down a confession while his senpai’s from the art club do the worst tree impersonations ever. I did like how they drew a tree in between Uchimaki and the girl who confessed as it really helped to make it clear there was a gap between them and that this was not going to be a successful confession.

Are they trying to land a plane?

While I am a little baffled as to how the girl didn’t notice the two hiding behind the bush, this scene was otherwise pretty straight forward, though I am curious as to the overall layout of the school and whether or not this takes place anywhere near the art room.

With that I’m done with episode 2 and I hope you’ve enjoyed your tour of scenes that are not in the art room. Remember to go to Yomu’s site to check out other entries or get on board and join in.

Thanks for reading
Karandi James
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The Morose Mononokean Season 2 Episode 2 With Irina and Karandi: We’re Making New Friends

The Morose Mononokean Post Title

The Morose Mononokean is back for its second episode and that means Irina and I are back to discuss what’s new for Abeno and Hanae as we pick up from that surprise first episode cliffhanger.

I was looking forward to this episode. Not so much because the cliffhanger had me on the edge of my seat but I find the Morose Mononokean universe comfy and cozy. It was a wonderful way to spend an afternoon as the outside world is grey, windy and freezing!

I agree, definitely a great way to spend some time (morning for me but given it’s already in the high thirties and just getting hotter, I’m not leaving the air conditioning today).

The Morose Mononokean - Hanae

I wasn’t really surprised to learn that Hanae wasn’t really in danger (while it was possible it didn’t seem likely this early on). Then again, given how season one dealt with its cliffhangers I wasn’t really surprised this one diffused pretty quickly. What I did like was that even though the threat more or less sorted itself out, we transitioned very quickly into seeing Hanae helping find the gold-shiny thing and this linked back to his previous efforts at finding a ring. Hanae has some odd quirks and eventually they are going to have to explain why a seemingly normal human can pull this kind of thing off.

The Morose Mononokean - Hanae finding the ring

The one thing I didn’t like was that the episode felt the need to flash back to Hanae finding the ring. Realistically most people watching this will have seen the first season and that was a moment that stood out for Hanae because it was particularly strange. Then again, how did you feel about it, Irina?

Actually, I appreciated it. I had quite liked that episode in the first season but I probably wouldn’t have recalled it if it weren’t for the flash back. Since it was just a short scene, I really didn’t find it dragged down the narrative at all.

What struck me most was the disconnect between the beast and it’s voice. I really didn’t match it’s looks and for some reason I loved it. Just hearing that sightly whiny bored tone coming out of a regal liger made me happy. I could no longer take him seriously but that’s ok.

The Morose Mononokean Episode 2 Hanae and Beast

I have to agree about the voice. At first I was wondering who was talking and then I realised it was the beast.

Of course, regardless of what we end up learning about Hanae he is a complete goof. The Goro Express moment is an excellent example of Hanae at his silliest though it does get him where he needs to go. I was actually surprised when the whole delivery seemed pretty straight forward. I kind of expected more from the actual handover of the document.

I don’t know if you’ve had dogs growing up. To be honest I was an adult when I got my first dog but Buddy is pretty big and I’m pretty small so he does come up roughly to my waist. If I could ride him I would never walk again. I have Neverending Story envy.

The Morose Mononokean Episode 2 Hanae riding the beast

Yes the hand off was very easy….suspiciously easy…. The again, he is on the authority of the legislator and that may carry some weight.

Maybe. The Legislator continues to be a great character in the show. It is so hard to know how seriously we should be taking him and whether or not things work out for him by coincidence or really careful planning and manipulation. His interactions with Abeno are great because Abeno is usually such a hard character to read because he’s either stoic or annoyed (usually at Hanae). When the Legislator is playing with him though we see a somewhat wider range of responses.

I think we discover more about Abeno and Rippou when they’re not together. We don’t quite know the end game here. A lot of Yokai seem antagonistic to humans which is why Hanae has to be so careful so I wonder where the Legislator actually stands. Asking a question like *if you could save only one, would it be Yokai or Human? Is super ominous. Does he think it may come to that?

The Morose Mononokean Episode 2 Rippou (The Legislator)

The again, they are framing the story to make him appear sympathetic for the most part.

That question is a little bit leading only I have no idea where it is going.

I wasn’t overly sold on the Hanae getting sick at the end as a final complication for the episode though. It did give Abeno an excuse to leave to fetch something to fix him which allowed the conversation between the two yokai, but it just felt really contrived to me.

The Morose Mononokean Episode 2 Abeno looking at Hanae

I actually thought he was faking it for a while. I also wondered why Abeno felt it necessary to put on a tie to run to the convenience store. The whole scene was a bit unbalanced but I did enjoy the party leading up to it.

I always loved the running gag of Shizuku being jealous of Hanae because Koura wants to use his body parts for medicine. It’s so delightfully weird.

Delightfully weird is an excellent description.

Then we get that final moment with the other yokai discussing the new employee. I wonder if Hanae’s life is about to get more interesting?

The Morose Mononokean Episode 2 - yokai

I bet it is. That final yokai we saw only in silhouette was considerably more threatening than what we usually get from this show. They might be ramping up the stakes a bit and I’m here for it.

The final thing I want to raise was that Fuzzy was absolutely adorable this episode. Much like Platelet sightings during Cells at Work, I could happily watch this show just for Fuzzy moments. Is there anything else you want to look at?

This episode was clearly a setup for the future events of the season. I don’t have much to say about it out of context like this. I did however get a few random thoughts while watching:

  • Although Yahiko isn’t the cutest little fox yokai I’ve seen, he’s still pretty darn cute.
  • “Hindsight” isn’t really that complicated a word
  • Where did the tail ring go when the beast transformed into a humanoid form? Just curious….
The Morose Mononokean - Beast in human form

That’s all I have!

Although this wasn’t the most eventful episode it still served the story well. I am looking forward to next week as I was to this. I also realized that it was over before I knew it which is always a good sign.

All three of your random points make perfect sense, particularly the one about the tail ring. I was definitely wondering where that went.

I’m with you in that I’m definitely looking forward to next week with this anime.

Thanks for reading
Karandi James
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Fukigen na Mononokean Tsuzuki (Anime) Intro Theme
Fukigen na Mononokean Tsuzuki (Anime) Intro Theme

Friendly Talks with Arthifis – Final Thoughts on Dakaichi

Dakaichi Episode 10 Takato and Junta kiss

And here we are with the final collaboration post between Arthifis and myself, for the Autumn season. We’ve had such a good time we’ve decided to take on a similar project in the Winter 2019 season so just wait and hopefully we’ll soon be announcing the shows we’ll be discussing. In the meantime, here are our final thoughts on Dakaichi, and over on Arthifis’ new place, the Anime Shelter, you can check out our final impressions of Goblin Slayer.

Below I am in RED and BOLD and Arthifis is in BLUE and ITALICS.

Dakaichi Episode 9 Takato

Welcome back Arthifis. It is great to see you again and today we get to discuss the end of Dakaichi. So much happened in these final episodes I’m not even sure where to start. Though I suppose, we should probably start with episodes 9  – 11 before we discuss episode 12, where things more or less conclude, before we get to episode 13 which just seemed like its own thing. What do you think?

Thank you for having me once again ^.^ I always love doing these eheh

Yeah, I would start from there! I actually liked this last arc (before the conclusion) I wasn’t really expecting that it would go for that route at all! I was almost sensing that it would be another guy/girl coming up in the series trying to steal either Junta or Takato from the other. But, contrary to all that they played the tabloid card, which for me was unexpected and interesting!

The thing that I liked the most is that, how Japan deals with celebrities such as idols or actors, it is something that I cans see happening in real life. I also have to love how Junta was able to completely fool me and made me think that he started dating with a girl… I mean, I knew that he was saving Takato in his own way, but I thought he was actually with her 😛

On the other hand, there was an excellent character development on the Takato’s side. It was really pleasant to see Takato starting to take out his mask and letting himself go with his emotions more and more 😛

What about you, what is your verdict on this arc?

Dakaichi Episode 11 Takato

I really enjoyed it but I ended up with mixed feelings about a few things. I loved that the relationship drama focused very much on their careers rather than a love triangle or something similar. Dakaichi was always at its most entertaining when it focused on their jobs with the relationship sitting behind that and so having to think about their relationship in terms of how it would impact on their acting career seemed like a really suitable arc for this story to end on and I really loved that.

I didn’t love the lack of communication that still exists between the pair at this stage in their relationship. Takato dumping Junta to protect him and Junta ‘dating’ whatever her name was in order to set up his take-down of the tabloid; I just felt like if they’d actually had a conversation they could have bypassed a lot of the drama. Admittedly, then it wouldn’t have taken as many episodes and it probably would have been pretty uninteresting to watch, but in terms of them having any kind of healthy relationship it would have been nice to see.

That said, I’m with you in that I loved seeing Takato’s development as a character (big surprise given how much I’ve enjoyed Takato in general). However, seeing him at the end of this arc, I really loved how his character had been changed by the events of the series while still being Takato.

Did you have a favourite moment?

Dakaichi Episode 10 Takato and Junta

First let me just comment in the healthy relationship that you commented 😛 I completely agree with you, but at the same time if not like this, there would not many episodes (as you said). But, also I think Takato had to develop to what he is today so he could have this conversation.

Regarding the favourite moment… Well, I think my favourite moment is when Junta is on TV and says everything ahah I loved how everyone who worked with Takato went to Twitter telling their story with Takato being clumsy ahah The guy who tries to be always perfect in the public eye just had everyone showing his softer and cuter side ahah (though I can’t remember if this is in episode 11 or 12).

I also loved the rings scene… It just means a lot both for the characters and for me! I mean, I also put my heart and feelings out for this relationship to work, right!?

What about you?

Dakaichi Episode 12 Ayagi

I also have to pick Junta’s announcement on TV. I may not be the biggest fan of Junta but he played this so well and it was such a well executed moment. The tweets about Takato being clumsy were hilarious but I think what I loved the most was how Junta just smoothly slid in the idea that he was going to move in with Takato mid-TV announcement and so much else was going on that no one even batted an eye. I have to give his character credit for being pretty gutsy.

What about least favourite moment?

From all the series?

Why not, though if you have one from the final episodes that would be cool.

Dakaichi Episode 12 Takato and Junta

Well… Both include in someone trying to take advantage of Takato, so I’ll give you both ahah

My least favorite from all the series is, of course, when the other guy is thinking of forcing himself on drunk Takato and ends up stopping because of Junta’s phone call.

From the last episodes, has to be that director (producer?) who tests Takato and tries to go to bed with him. Of course it was to make the point that Takato was still in love with Junta, but I just don’t like these kind of stuff lolol

What about you?

Dakaichi Episode 12 Takato and Junta

My least favourite moment is also a Junta moment. Where he is pretending to be dating the actress and gets in Takato’s face about his expression. I mean, I know Takato dumped him, but Junta has more or less figured out why and what is going on with Takato, so this scene just feels like he’s being a bit of a jerk for the sake of it.

Anything else from these episodes before we get to episode 13?

Just gonna comment… I’m not sure if Junta knew that it was what was happening… Truth is, Junta always seemed pretty insecure when it comes to Takato, like Takato would flee far away one day or another. This way, I somewhat understood the elevator scene.

In fact, I think it was on that point where Junta understood that Takato still loved him and ended everything to protect him.

But, that’s all… Now, episode 13… I don’t even know what to say about it ahah Basically it seemed like a DVD special more than anything.

I liked it. I liked it a lot. I mean, it is kind of special to see Takato running everywhere trying to find the best present and place to go with in Christmas. Moreover, it is pretty fun to see him believe everything he overhears. I mean, he even starts thinking that Junta will dump him if he doesn’t have a present for him ahah

It was a cute episode, ending the series in a bright note! However, I would prefer that the episode was around that play they were talking about in episode 12 😛

What about you?

Dakaichi Episode 13 Junta and Takato

I agree that it definitely felt like a DVD special more than a final episode. That said, it was a very good special and I really loved watching Takato bump into literally everyone we have met this series before finally getting Christmas with Junta. It was just cute and sweet.

That said, it didn’t actually do anything for the story and given episode 12 left us with a few points (such as the new project that Takato and Junta are working on and that random new character they introduced), it just makes me wonder if they ever intend to do anything with that.

On that note, if they did, would you watch it?

Ooooh! It WAS a new character! I actually thought it was someone who I just had erased from my memory. That, or just showing that the director (producer?) was also gay, just because how he said to Takato that being gay (or just having a relationship) would destroy his career.

Answering to your question… YES! I really loved it! It was one of the best Shounen-Ai Animes I’ve ever watched! So, I really want to thank you for introducing me to this series 😀 I would do the first impressions nonetheless, but by having this collab with you made me really want to watch everything eheh

What about you?

Dakaichi Episode 13 Takato

If Takato is in it, I’m going to be watching.

No, I really loved watching this series even with some of its more problematic moments, so I’d happily take a second season. I think there’s still heaps that these characters can do and I’d definitely love to see more of the behind the scenes stuff at their work. So fingers crossed that eventually we get another season (no idea how far the source material went at this point though I might need to go refresh my memory about that as well at some point).

I think this one is still a little bit hard to recommend. There’s a lot about it that is really good but I found myself last week explaining the plot to a friend and by the time I got to the end of the first episode they were ready to bolt. It definitely is one that only really works if you kind of know what you are getting into and you aren’t going to be put entirely off by those moments that really push the envelope.

Final thoughts?

Well, I basically am with you! It’s shounen-ai and as most Anime shows under this genre, it’s created for a specific public. This way, I would say it is not for everyone. But if you like the genre, or even if you like romance a lot, I think this Dakaretai is one to try out! 🙂

In the end, I think it’s not perfect, but it’s really good! Every episode was entertaining and I didn’t feel bored not even once. Something that I cannot say from the Anime we are discussing at my place ahah

So yeah, that’s my final verdict! 😛 A very strong shounen-ai Anime which I recommend a lot to people who like this kind of setting… Oh! Also, before I forget! Sasaki Takumi is the best manager! (I think that’s the name XD)

Dakaichi Episode 10

Thanks so much for joining me to cover this anime. We’ll definitely have to try this again in a future season. Hopefully the readers have also enjoyed following along with our friendly chats.

Thank you for doing this with me! 🙂 It was really fun and I would love to do it in a future season! And, yes, hopefully you guys also liked to follow our little chats eheh 😉

See you next season, maybe? 😀

Thanks for reading
Karandi James
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Dakaretai Otoko 1-i ni Odosarete Imasu. Pukutto Badge Collection Box
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The Morose Mononokean Season 2 Episode 1 Review With Karandi and Irina

The Morose Mononokean Post Title

The Morose Mononokean is back and Irina and I have decided to come together to cover this season. Check out our first post over on Irina’s blog: The Morose Mononokean Season Episode 1 Review. Hope you love it!

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Karandi James
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The Morose Mononokean Tsuzuki Ballpoint Pen Moja

Friendly Talks with Arthifis: Dakaichi Late Season Thoughts

Dakaichi Episode 7 On Set

Hey everyone and welcome to Arthifis’ and my late season thoughts on Dakaichi. I can’t believe we’re already three quarters through the season and soon we’ll be doing our final thoughts on the season. That’s kind of exciting and I will admit I have absolutely loved this collaboration with Arthifis this season (and if you haven’t checked it out already, be sure to check out Arthifis’ Ultimate Guide to the season).

Admittedly, both of us suffered from time zone issues this time around with Arthifis needing some coffee to help him wake up and me needing some pepsi to keep me awake as our marathon effort at discussing both Goblin Slayer and Dakaichi stretched on. The problem was, we both had so much to say about both shows and I think we probably could have kept going except that I needed some sleep and I’m sure Arthifis needed to do something else with his Saturday besides chat with me.

Anyway, if you haven’t already been and read it, please check out Arthifis’ site where our thoughts on Goblin Slayer will be posted and with that let’s get into Dakaichi. Today we’re covering up to episode 8.


Dakaichi Episode 5 Takato and Junta

Welcome Arthifis. I’m really glad we’re back again and discussing Dakaichi. I’m going to be honest, the last few episodes have made it clear that my memory of this one is patchy at best because other than Junta’s episode, a lot of the events in the last few episodes have come as a surprise to me and I realised that yeah, I don’t remember much of anything else from the source. So, we’re almost on a level playing field when it comes to this one at the moment.

On that note, how have the last few episodes been for you?

ahah I know the feeling of not remembering anything at all from something I read/watched.

Well… There is way too much happening on these episodes and a lot of things that I want to touch and ask your opinion xD So,maybe I’m gonna start with the conclusion of (browsing the name of the guy)…Is it Kiyotaka? I’m having a blank lol No, it’s not! It’s Ayagi.

Ok, let me just rephrase that, then… So, maybe I’m gonna start with the conclusion of Ayagi’s situation, what do you think?

Dakaichi Episode 6 Ayagi and Junta

I actually kind of liked how that concluded in the end mostly because Ayagi’s existence makes Junta look less creepy by default and also because the attention very much turned to Takato and the fact that he actually does kind of like Junta. It’s been hard to tell whether Takato is into the relationship or not previously, but after his encounter with Ayagi it really does make it clear that Junta isn’t forcing anything (or at least not too much) and Takato has made a clear choice.

That said, Ayagi is a really horrible person,but a necessary character. Or at least that’s how I saw it. (Is Kiyotaka the younger guy?) How did you find the conclusion to the Ayagi/Takato situation?

Nope, the younger character is Narumiya… I actually can’t find who Kiyotaka is LOL There is no pictures in MAL besides Junta and Takato and on Anime-Planet he doesn’t even appear on the character list LOLOL So, let’s just let him be for now ahah

Well, I understand what you are saying, but I don’t agree, to be honest. I found most part unnecessary. In fact, if we look up close, Ayagi was ready to force himself and rape Takato if Junta had not phoned. For me, it’s just not ok. Yes, Ayagi sleeps with everyone who he feels that he has to so he can climb in the ladder, that’s not ethic, but completely fine by me. However, from there, to actually rape someone who is passed out because how drunk they are it’s just… Not ok in my book. I mean, I don’t mind seeing media where that situation is used in a way of bringing awareness where the victim passes through hell and etc. I think the bad stuff also has to appear on the big (and small) screen. However, in this case, the situation is brushed off very easily.

I do think you are right when it comes to Junta though. When I was watching the episode I felt that Junta was stalking a little too much (the scene where Junta seems to be following Takato and knows where he is and what he is doing). However, after watching I put myself in his shoes and… If my boyfriend was close to being rape like Takato I would probably be even madder than Junta and would actually destroy the guy’s pretty face right away. Moreover, if I was in some kind of a world where that situation couldn’t be discussed or brought to the authorities and my boyfriend had to forcefully work that guy nevertheless, I would go and keep a close eye to what was happening.

However, at the end, I didn’t like how things were brushed off. Right away we can see that Ayagi is not such a bad guy after all. Meaning, he would not go to bed with someone if they are in a relationship. Besides, he actually goes in a quest in trying to make amends for what he has done to other girls. A little bit because of Junta’s blackmail, but also because of liking Takato and wanting to conquer his love. So, it just doesn’t make much sense…

What about Junta’s episode? Did you like it?

Dakaichi Episode 6 Takato

Before that, I think the depiction of rape and consent is a huge issue in any kind of Yaoi/BL story. The way it is portrayed,the consequences of it, the impact it has on people’s lives, it is very seldom explored in any meaningful way and is regularly used as a gateway into a same sex relationship which is just appalling. However, what that does mean, is that going into this story, I kind of expected it to be a lot worse. I was fully prepared for Junta to force Takato in episode 1 and for them to then try and build a relationship out of it (much like they did in Junjou Romantica – and that is still kind of creepy that they end up in the relationship they do).

So, by the time we get to this scene with Ayagi almost but not raping Takato, it isn’t so much that I think they did a good job of how they present the issue, because to be perfectly frank, they didn’t. Mostly because of all the reasons you’ve already identified. But, in my head I’m rationalising with the ‘it could have been worse’ argument. Which isn’t a great justification and for people who identify with this kind of event, won’t help that once again the issue of rape is being trivialised by this particular kind of story. Still, it is why it didn’t bother me so much while watching. I was genuinely expecting this series to be worse than it is in terms of how that issue was presented.

Does that make sense?

Dakaichi Episode 6 Junta and Takato

Yes, it does. And I remember when we first did this, you talked about that scene. The truth is, since they didn’t go that route in episode 1, I was expecting that they would not do it this time around.I was trying to find a scene where Takato could be at fault by leading Ayagi. However, that would not make sense to his character. So.. I think they could goat the route of Ayagi just trying to kiss him or something like that. It would piss off Junta nevertheless and it would be easier to digest.

However, I have to say that this scene, yet again, showed how Takato’s character is a little all over the place. I mean,one day he is this strong male character who doesn’t let anyone to play games with him, in the next he just seems someone who needs a strong man to defend him from everything… Oh, well… I understand, it’s the uke and seme formula that everyone wants to watch.

However, I do have to say, that they could just make Takato behave in a different way while near Junta (it would make a lot of sense) and still give the uke and seme formula without making me feel that Takato’s character is always changing with really no reason at all.

Sorry, just started another topic before even talking about Junta’s episode 😛 It’s just, this Anime is kind of a hate-love for me… I just love the relationship and both characters, but then I hate the flaws that the Anime has in my opinion xD

So do you want to finish discussing Takato and then tackle Junta’s episode? Because I could talk all day about Takato.

Ahaha! Yeah sure! 😀 I mean, I think I gave my opinion for these episodes, so go ahead eheh

Alright, I’m with you in that Takato’s character changes a lot but for me I find every change fairly relevant to what is happening at the time. When he’s in front of others or at work he has his professional face and personality. When he’s initially dealing with people he’s fairly stand-offish and tactical. Junta’s just forced his way through Takato’s barriers so he almost has no reason to put up a front anymore because Junta’s already seen him at his worst so he can just kind of let himself go.

However, after the incident with Ayagi, we see an actual vulnerable Takato. I loved the sequence after he woke up and he ended up wrapping himself in the curtain. As much as the anime isn’t dealing with the issues anywhere near as seriously as it needs to, it did give us a really good moment right there with Takato feeling lost, bewildered, doubting himself and then that moment of panic about how Junta was going to take it. Also, after being attacked, or allowing himself to be taken to bed by someone, it kind of made sense that Takato continued to feel a little out of sorts and vulnerable during the remainder of the episode before he got his feet back under him again.

I really enjoy these small changes in his character. Admittedly, they aren’t as nuanced as they should be to really pull it off and so he does come across as someone who kind of changes too much, but thinking about each scene I can kind of see where he’s coming from. That and because it was established that so much of his exterior is facade in the first place, it makes sense that he readily changes to suit the occasion. Then again,I really like Takato as a character so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt.

Onto Junta now? Or did you have something to add?

Dakaichi Episode 6 Junta
I can kind of see where Junta is coming from here.

Yeah, let me just comment in what you said xD(We should just do a post about Takato and call it a day ahah)

I’m with you, I really am. I compeltely understand having two different personalities when it comes to work. Especially when you work at the show biz. I also completely understand how Takato is way more vulnerable when he’s with Junta. In fact, Takato never had that kind of support, so it’s just natural that he wants to be himself and let his barriers go when he’s with Junta.

However, in this case, we see a weak Takato in front of Ayagi… I mean, this could be because Takato is slowly becoming more himself even when at work… However, it just felt a little too convenient so we could have that scene.

Nevertheless, I think Takato’s experience after that night is very well executed. In this case, I don’t’t think Takato would ever think that he was about to be raped. In his mind, he just asked himself if he had drunk too much, had sex with the guy and completely forget about it (without anyone forcing anyone). Only the viewers know what Ayagi was trying to do. And Junta, who gets it right away.

So, yeah, I think Takato is a great character which is becoming more and more complex 🙂

Well, let’s start on Junta’s episode? XD

Dakaichi Episode 7 - Junta

Junta it is. And I will admit episode 7 did a lot to make me start actually caring about Junta as more than just the other guy in the relationship. I do remember part of his story from reading it, but it was really nice to see his character and motives getting fleshed out. I actually really found it cute how he slowly started noticing Takato and what he was doing on the set until Takato kind of dominated all of his attention. And then he overhears Takato having a bit of a tantrum and you see the light bulb go off in his head and you know he’s hooked. It was adorable and for once I didn’t find Junta just the extra in the relationship but actually a character worth noting for who he was.

You?

Dakaichi Episode 7 Takato and Junta

See? I told you Junta was awesome! 😀

Now, for real… I’m completely with you! I wasn’t expecting for this episode. I didn’t really thought they would give an episode where we can hear Junta’s brain side. I loved to see how he fell in love by Takato and how things developed for him. In fact, it makes way more sense that first episode now xD

However, of course, I have to say that trying to steal a kiss while Takato is in bed ill, was a little too much ahah Again,Takato had the luck of someone entering the scene at the right time so he didn’t get advantage off.

Buuuuuut, I understand Junta’s feelings. When I was a teenager, in parties and things like that I would sleep in the same bed as my best friend who I was terribly in love… I’m not gonna say that I was never tempted to do something like that (of course I never did, because there are boundaries and things like that). But, I understand the feeling of loving someone so much and not being both ways. It messes with your head >.<

Now… I want to address last episode… Episode8… What did you think about this… Well filler episode? XD

Dakaichi Episode 8 Ayagi and Junta

Can we just call it trash and move on? Or do we actually need to discuss it? Because honestly, if we just cut out about a minute of Ayagi attempting to be a better person and the last five minutes where the two are photographed by the reporter (and maybe a small little slice where that other guy seems to notice their relationship)  then the rest of this can just kind of get tossed in the bin.

I don’t really mind filler but beach filler is lazy at best. Breaking the episode into seemingly mindless vignettes of the characters doing whatever was actually pretty tedious and every time they cut between sequences it just made me check the time to see if the episode was nearly done.

How about you?

Dakaichi Episode 8 Junta

AHAHAHAH! I did the exact same thing when the cut between sequences happened. Damn! Those were a LOT, and I mean a LOT of cuts!!!! I think if you take it all of them the episode would be 5 minutes less.

I don’t really know what happened, but I felt the same way as you… Everything felt lazy as hell. Not only the scenes, but even the animation, the backgrounds… Everything seemed rushed. Character design was always changing and there were scenes where Takato didn’t even seemed himself LOL Also, character design just felt soooo off-place versus the background… Damn, it was a mess!

Oh, and also! I mean, we are in a filler episode and we didn’t got much fanservice. Which… Well, I don’t mind, but really makes you ask what the point of the episode all along…

However… there were so many scenes I laughed…I hate myself… And I loved Takato’s character on this one! XD I loved how he was all bumped on playing volleyball because Ayagi told him that he probably was bad at it xD

I don’t know… It’s true, the episode is trash…But I ended up hating and loving it at the same time! I think if they had put a little more time in creating this one that I would had just had fun from the beginning to the end ahahah So, let’s call it a guilty pleasure of mine xD

Dakaichi Episode 8 Takato and Junta

I actually think you raised a good point about the lack of fan-service. Now it is odd for me to say that they should have more fan-service or more sexually explicit content in anything, but honestly, that probably would have improved this episode. And wow… I’m never ever writing that sentence again.

Anyway, the theory I came up with in my head was that they are aiming to end the series at a particular point and they needed to stretch the run time and so we have off-model volleyball playing with a lot of stills and panning.

I should probably admit that despite this being my low point for this series, it is still getting ranked in my weekly rankings that I’m keeping at about the mid-range level so I can’t have hated it that much.

Alright, anything more to discuss or are we wrapping things up?

Ahahah xD See… I don’t know, there was just something in that episode that shines and makes the episode fun 😛

But, yes, agree with your theory. I also think that they are more into creating the perfect finale, which means, they decided to take less time on working in episode 8 and just get more time to work in the final 4.

And… Well, never say never XD We never know whatt he future may bring.

Nevertheless, I don’t really have much to add.Just wanna say that I’m pretty excited with what it’s coming there! Having the couple being exposed in the media is going to be an interesting ride to watch.If they do this correctly, the relationship will come out way stronger and we will get that cheesy ending moment where they will both say to each other:

“Even if lose my career, what I want is to be with…” – proceed to kiss in a bed

And that’s it from my end 🙂 Can’t wait to watch the rest of it and comment with you our final thoughts ^^

I’m also really looking forward to the end of this one. Not because I don’t like it, but because I really want that moment where they either end up together or choose their career (and I honestly can’t remember how it goes so I’ll be really surprised either way). But I have loved this journey they are on with their relationship. For all the problems this series has, it is still fantastic to see these two getting together and seeing how that is changing them as we go.

Thanks so much for joining me for this one and I really am excited for our next post where we do our final impressions.

Thank you for having me 🙂 And I’m pretty excited too eheh


Okay, that was a really long chat but we both had a great time and hopefully you enjoyed joining us for it. Of course both Arthifis and I would love to know your thoughts on Dakaichi so leave us a comment below and remember to check out our thoughts on Goblin Slayer over on Arthis’ Place. If you missed our previous talks the links are below.

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Karandi James
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Friendly Talks With Arthifis: DAKAICHI Mid-Season Thoughts

Introduction:

Arthifis and I are back with the next part of our collaboration. We’re five episodes in to Dakaichi and a lot has happened (or at least we had plenty to say about what has been happening) so we recently had a fantastic conversation about the show and how it is going. If you missed our first impressions chat, be sure to check it out and remember we’ll be talking about Goblin Slayer over on Arthifis’ place so if you haven’t seen that post be sure to go and give it a read. For now though, let’s get into it.

Dakaichi4f

Conversation:

Hey Arthifis! How are you this week?

Hey there Karandi! I’m really good to be honest! 🙂 I’m cooking some secret project which is making me watch a lot of Anime… And I’m having a LOT of fun to be honest ahah what about you?

If I’m honest, I’m not in a great space at the moment but that’s just because I’ve been super busy with work and I can see the next few weeks are going to spiral out of control (to the point where I’m looking at maybe having to suspend some posts on my blog in a couple of weeks just to take a breather). Still, it isn’t all bad news. I’m off to a convention next weekend (great timing, I know). I’m really curious about this project of yours though. You’ve hinted at it a few times.

That’s a bummer to hear! 😦 I actually understand you though… My work has been getting busier and busier and I’m actually struggling a lot to be able to balance Blog with work… Well, in fact I just stopped writing on the blog for the time being completely. But, well… That convention seems to be a lot of fun! So hopefully it will be something good eheh 🙂 Eheh yeah I know, I want to surprise everyone, but at the same time I’m so proud and having so much fun that is being difficult to actually have my mouth completely shut about it xD

Okay, so we’re starting off with Dakaichi today. And we’ve both watched up to episode 5. I’m curious as to what you think of the show so far.

Dakaichi4b

Well, I have to say that I discovered in episode 5 that I have fallen in love with the characters and their romance without even realizing it 😀 But, if that’s ok with you I would like to comment on episode 5 more at the end of the post because I don’t really want to lose all the commentary about the love I have from the series until episode 4. What about you?

Yes, episode 5 does need its own kind of section because it goes in a bit of a different direction then the first 4. Still, I’m with you in falling in love with the characters and their romance. Or at least Takato. Junta still doesn’t do a lot for me, but in his defence he doesn’t get a lot of screen time and we’re almost exclusively seeing Takato’s perspective for the majority of the episodes.

Yeah, that’s true. Actually I would like to watch the same story with Junta’s perspective… Nevertheless, I do have to say that Junta is growing more and more inside of me. It’s true that he still doesn’t seem to be able to stay his hmmm… instrument (?) under his trousers. However, we can see that he is in fact in love with Takato and he cares for him deeply. Something I actually liked to watch was how Takato start falling for him… Although maybe I could pass the cheesy momentos where Takato gets teary eyes without really having a reason for it.

My real issue comes from Junta though. As you said, it is clear he really loves him, which is fantastic and what makes so many of the feel good moments of this show stick. But it is also what makes this kind of creepy at times because Junta really pushes the line on consent in a lot of scenes. And the excuse, that they are in love, doesn’t make that sit any better. Admittedly, Junta does stick just on the side of the line that is kind of okay in a story at least, but putting this into a real world sort of situation, I’d tell Takato as a friend to ditch him.

Dakaichi2a

Yeah, I can understand your perspective. However, at my point of view I think Junta just pushes Takato’s boundaries. It’s true that he is pushing himself a little too much. However, contrary to what tropes we normally deal with, here Takato does want to have the sexual relationship, he just doesn’t seem to be completely comfortable with it. For example, the bus scene. Tanako starts saying no, but it’s not because he does not want it, it’s because he is scared of being caught. However, ends up going with it… I’m not sure if that makes any sense?

It makes sense, and it is one of the reasons why I enjoyed reading the story. Takato isn’t against the relationship and while some sequences look very much like Junta is being forceful, Takato very much goes along with a lot of it, and not just goes along, but encourages in his own way. And as you said, comparing it to the tropes and outright non-consensual situations this genre  normally throws at us, Dakaichi is at least with this main couple attempting to tone it down in the anime and even reading it after the first couple of encounters a similar toning down happened.

Outside of the relationship though, I’m really enjoying seeing Takato doing his job and part of me kind of wishes we had more sequences where he was on set or doing photoshoots and the like. What about you?

Dakaichi4g

That’s actually what I was going to pick next ahah Something that bothers me a little is how Takato’s personality changes completely when he is working and when he is with Junta. I can understand why they decided to go that route (the guy who always seems to be the best ending up being the “uke” in the relationship. However, I think I would prefer to see Tanako more in his own self way that the teary kind of guy because he is going to have sex. It does not make much sense to me.

So, yeah! I agree with you. I would like to see more of this dominant Tanako since it’s his true personality. Moreover, due to both personalities in this relationship it just does not make sense to me to have a top and a bottom. At my point of view, if this kind of relationship happened they would both be more fluid in bed, meaning they would change sides since both seem to have pretty dominant personalities but also love to be embraced and “dominated” by others. What do you think?

I kind of see Takato a bit differently. I think his personality that he has on set is the cultivated ‘fake’ personality he’s had to construct after a lifetime of working in show business. He’s calculated that appearance and attitude to maximise his chances of success at work, but it isn’t really him. I do enjoy seeing that persona, but it really is just another character he’s playing (which is probably why he’s such a good actor). I kind of feel he has decided to throw aside the persona when he’s alone with Junta and while I do think he possibly becomes a little too sappy, it is kind of nice that he can just kind of let his guard down because it must be exhausting to wear that mask all day.

I can understand your point of view. However, when I was talking about the personality was more about his line of thought, instead of the way he presents to others. His way of thinking is normally in the same page wherever he is (since nobody can actually read his thoughts). And from those kind of thoughts I see someone who is calculist and likes to dominate things. But, yes it’s true that he lets himself go when with Junta.

In fact, I think that persona is what makes Junta to seem to push himself so much because Takato’s persona just can’t accept to be with other guy, I mean it would mean problems in his acting career, right?

Dakaichi2c

You’re right in that Takato’s inner monologue really doesn’t change between when he’s at work and when he’s with Junta. That’s an interesting pick up and one I’ll need to consider.

I don’t have much else to say about the first four episodes, other than I really enjoyed them. Is there anything else you want to discuss before we turn our attention to episode 5?

Let me see… *picks notes*…. Nope, I think we covered everything! Since we are going into episode 5, let me start with this question. What do you think about Takato’s character evolution in episode 5? Isn’t a little strange someone who knows the game, is over-cautious and knows that guy is basically a snake to just let his guard down?

Dakaichi5b

Yeah, I have a big issue with Takato’s character in this episode. The start is great where we see how he’s more or less completely accepted his relationship with Junta (loved the scene where he accepted Junta’s key-card), but then as you said, he lets his guard down. Now, I guess you could argue that Takato has gotten blind drunk and done something stupid before (episode 1) except that in that case he’d just lost his title of Most Huggable/Sexy Guy or whatever and then ended up the supporting actor to the guy who took his title. It kind of made sense that he’d go on a bender. Here, it really doesn’t make sense and I know that they just wanted to set up that final scene, but it really did seem totally out of character for Takato. What did you think?

Exactly the same thing as you. In this episode Takato came out as this naive and “weak” character which we already know he isn’t. It’s true that he can’t handle his drink. However, to be honest, first, I just can’t Takato giving help to an actor he doesn’t like so easily. Second, it’s hard for me to believe that he would just go and get drunk near someone who he knows that is one of those actors that play rough and dirty.

Dakaichi5d

As you, I think they just needed some kind of event to get to that final scene. At this point the romance is completely settled and they had to add some kind of problem into it so there is story to continue. However, I hated the execution. I don’t what was the worst, if the character changing completely, or if it seems that they are building a rape scene to start next episode….

We were definitely diving into uncomfortable territory at the end there (not unexpected but I was kind of hoping they’d tone it down given they toned down episode 1 a lot). But yeah, Takato’s character really suffered in this set up and it is unfortunate given I’ve really been enjoying how he’s come across and during most of episode 5 I just wanted to call him an idiot.

That said, I get why he gave the guy advice. They are going to be on stage together and if the lead doesn’t pull his weight and the show goes down in flames that is going to reflect on Takato’s career as well. Self-interest is always a fine enough motivator even if the guy is a complete jerk. One good thing about Ayagi (sorry, checking notes on that name), is that I really appreciate Junta as Takato’s partner after meeting him. Ayagi is just scum.

Dakaichi5e

That’s a way to take out something positive of this episode ahah I hope… I mean, I REALLY hope that in the beginning of the next episode Takato just pushes him away and that’s the end of it. Yes, it will bring problems since Junta will see that hickey and think he was cheated on. But, to be honest, isn’t just cliché?

I think I would probably prefer to see them just acting like a couple more than that… Work, for example, could become an issue or something like that… Or, maybe I just love these guys together so much that I don’t want to see any kind of attacks against their love ahah

Yeah, they definitely hitting the cliches and tropes this episode. I think overall, I’m still really enjoying watching this show and I really would like to see Junta and Takato get a happily ever after, but there’s no getting around the fact that episode 5 is a little bit a problem and it will all come down to how they continue it in episode 6 as to whether it is a serious red flag or just a momentary mis-step for the show.

Yeah, I agree with you. I once read somewhere something like this: It is completely ok to use coincidences and things that are just there to make a character to enter in some distress. However, it is not ok to do the same thing to take them out of that distress. So, we will see! I hope that in the next episode we will see Takato punching Ayagi’s face! I know that he won’t press any kind of charges because he is an actor in Japan and he’s afraid of losing his career and things like that. However, I do hope that Ayagi is not able to do anything to Tanaka when he seems to be passed out from drunkenness… I mean, that’s just… cheap porn story –’

Dakaichi5a

So, I really hope they are able to come back and make me love the series right away in this next episode!

I think that about wraps this chat up then, unless you have any final points you’d like to raise.

Nope, I think this is all eheh it was nice chatting with you 🙂

Thanks Arthifis for joining me on this one. I really enjoyed the chance to discuss Dakaichi and the characters and I think that I have a lot more to think about with Takato’s character now. Looking forward to when we come together again in a few weeks and hopefully we both don’t rage quit the show at episode 6.

For now though, I think we need to go over to your blog to discuss Goblin Slayer.

Thank you for having me and I couldn’t agree more! I was really looking forward for this talk since I had so much in my chest I wanted to share about Dakaichi with you, so these are always a lot of fun eheh

Well, I won’t rage quit! The most it can happen is that it will go to my Horrible Anime quest pile ahahah I look forward for our next talk in few weeks! ^^ And yes, time to come to my place and discuss a little bit about Goblin Slayer eheh

Dakaichi Episode 5 - Takato
My favourite Takato.

Conclusion:

Thanks to everyone who joined us for this conversation. We’d both love to know what you think of Dakaichi so far so be sure to leave us a comment, and remember to check out our chat about Goblin Slayer over on Arthifis’ blog.

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Karandi James
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A Special Halloween Top 5: Spirits, Ghosts, and Dead People – With Luminous Mongoose

Luminous Mongoose has had a busy month organising a number of collaborative top 5 lists for the spooky season. I was really happy they asked me to be a part of it, though I definitely struggled with time management (it has been a really busy month). Still, I love Halloween and all things creepy so getting to put together a list of top 5 ghosts seemed like a great idea.

Anyway, I’ve got the start of the list (5 – 3) but if you want to see who my favourite ghost/spirit character is, and Lumi’s, than you will have to jump over to their blog. Hopefully you enjoy the list and as always, I’d love to know which characters you would have included on your list.

Number 5:

Karandi’s Pick – Atsushi – Natsuyuki Rendezvous

Atsushi

He’s the jealous husband who literally won’t go away and when the new part timer who has eyes on his wife notices him, Atsushi starts out trying to drive him away. When that is unsuccessful, he takes a new approach convincing him to share his body and allow the ghost to speak with his wife. Needless to say Atsushi has a few other things in mind.

Lumi’s Pick – Son Goku (While he was dead after fighting Cell) – Dragon Ball

Son Goku.jpg

Okay, so right off the bat, counting Goku as a ghost will tell you that I’m being very loose with the entries on this list. While Goku has died as much as he has children and grandchildren, I always enjoyed his character the most when he was just a ghost exploring the afterlife of the Dragonball universe, and spectating on the affairs of his friends and family. The biggest reason why I included him here is thanks to the image above, which is the iconic Father-Son Kamehameha. Not only is it a beautiful shot, it also represents Goku passing on the torch to his son as the next savior of Earth, and it was a great send off for one of action shounen’s most iconic heroes.

At least until GT and Super crapped all over that.

Number 4:

Karandi’s Pick – Yuuko – Dusk Maiden of Amnesia

Yuuko4

She’s forgotten plenty but Yuuko has finally found someone who can see her and she’s ready to have fun exploring the mysteries of the old school house and generally mess around. Equally alluring and scary, Yuuko appears as people think she will and she uses this to her advantage as the ghost president of the supernatural research club.

Lumi’s Pick – No Face – Spirited Away

No Face.png

No Face is a very simple but effective character. We have no clues as to his motivations, nor does he ever even string together complete sentences. All we know is that he wants to be friends with Chihiro, and gets cranky when he doesn’t get what he wants. It’s a strange thing to see a possibly centuries-old spirit act like a spoiled child, but it really works for the bizarre tone of Spirited Away. His design is  creepy and off-putting, while still being distinctly Ghibli, and that lands him a spot at number 4.

Number 3:

Karandi’s Pick Yukine – Noragami

noragami2

Okay, probably not technically a ghost but he is the spirit of a dead boy who was reforged into a weapon for a god so I’m still throwing him in my list. He’s a fantastic character and while at first he comes off kind of sullen and one dimensional, his growth as a character over the two seasons of Noragami are a delight.

Lumi’s Pick – Fuko Ibuki – Clannad

Fubo Ibuki.png

Okay, major spoilers for the first arc of Clannad, so feel free to skip this if you somehow haven’t watched KyoAni’s magnum opus in terms of drama.

Having Fuko on here could be considered cheating since she is TECHNICALLY not dead, but she is the spirit of a girl in a coma, so I’m counting it. Just like Yuuko from Dusk Maiden of Amnesia, Fuko is a mysterious girl who is apparently tied to the school in some way, and has no memory of who they are.

When I first watched Clannad, I thought it was just gonna be a straightforward slice of life highschool drama, mysterious robot and girl in an astral plane aside. The reveal of her true nature was legitimately surprising and the mystery of it was intriguing.

She was the introduction of the supernatural element to the story which becomes a huge deal in the later arcs, and her arc was the highlight of my time with Clannad’s first season. Plus, her sudden reintroduction as a gag character despite her very heartfelt and emotional ending was hilarious and still completely in-character, so she makes the list at number 3!

And that’s our list numbers 5 – 3. Again, be sure to check out Luminous Mongoose’s post for the rest of the list.


Thanks for reading.

Karandi James

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GHOST TRICK: PHANTOM DETECTIVE