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Autumn 2010 – First Impressions (Hakuouki Hekketsuroku & Kuragehime)

October 16, 2010

At long fecking last!  It’s the last of these ‘First Impressions’ posts (for another season at least).  To wrap up the Autumn season its time for the fashionably late Noitamina show Kuragehime and the just plain late Hakuouki Hekketsuroku.

Hakuouki Hekketsuroku (Hakuouki S2)

Sequel time then – I’ll be watching this since I managed to stick out S1 in spite of its awful pacing and irritatingly passive female lead…..because it was pretty and I am shallow 😛 This episode manages to quickly recap the events of S1 (just as well since I had basically forgotten most of it) and get the plot moving in a pretty active direction (maybe all that tedious setup from S1 is finally paying off!?). The characters are still very shallow, but I do like them – Chizuru still needs an awful lot of work though, the girl is so pitifully useless it’s really quite annoying; sometimes I think the series would be better off without her (although then it would essentially be BL instead of reverse harem…..actually I quite like that idea).

Animation quality is of the same standard as S1 – DEEN do a surprisingly good job with this series in terms of direction and design; it’s still very pretty. Characters get a costume upgrade and haircuts for this season, and I really like the new character designs – yay for bishie eyecandy!  Cast is all back so no complaints about the voice acting. New OP is a surprisingly upbeat number which I hope heralds a bit more action for this season (animation seems to hint that Chizuru may actually do something other than whine and need saving!), and the ED is a nice ballad.

Overall a fairly promising start, I will be watching regardless but it would be nice if this show could deliver something interesting in addition to the bishie eyecandy (but won’t get my hopes up too far).

 

Kuragehime

Looks like the Noitamina timeslot can chalk up another hit, this first episode of Kuragehime was brilliant – its got just the right amount of comedy, character drama and quirkiness. I was slightly concerned that this would be just another ‘otaku show’ with a run of the mill Trap fired in for the craic, but Kuragehime has excellent scripting and the characters seem to have more to them than just their lol!quirk obsession. I particularly liked the Trap, in that he doesn’t really seem to care if everyone knows he’s cross-dressing – that kind of lax attitude and complete lack of shame/embarrassment is something of a rarity and a nice change considering the amount of Traps in anime recently. I’m very much looking forward to the rest of this show – if they keep the writing as snappy as it was in this first episode, this series will be an absolute gem.

On the production front, the animation is as solid as you would expect from Brains Base. The character designs are interesting and quite stylised – its nice to see something a bit different from the standard. Great cast on board – Kana Hanazawa seems to be everywhere these days and I can’t profess to be a fan of her brand of squeakiness, but she does a good job as Tsukimi. I loved the OP – great song, but the animation of all these parodies of Hollywood classics put a huge smile on my face. The ED has very simple animation, but again great song.

So a very solid opening episode for Kuragehime – I’m very pleased it turned out so well since this was one of the shows I was particularly looking forward to. Hopefully it will continue to be as fun for the rest of its run.

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. October 16, 2010 3:22 am

    Hah ha! Jellyfish otaku. I’m glad there is someplace where people can be free to indulge in their interests. As long as you’re not hurting somebody else, and it makes you happy, I support everyone’s right to obsess over topics of their choosing.

    Hakuouki: I hope Chizuru becomes less passive as well. That bit in the new OP where they show her with a determined expression, as the lyrics “I can even change myself” are sung really has me hoping this well be the case.

    • October 16, 2010 12:16 pm

      Jellyfish has to be one of the most niche obsessions I’ve heard of, but my god are they cute in Kuragehime! 😆

      I’m really hoping that the Hakuouki OP is suggesting that too – Chizuru is far to bland at the moment.

  2. October 16, 2010 7:08 am

    haha~ I am glad you enjoyed Kuragehime as well! Because I did! It was sooo good~ 😛 It is like one of the better new animes of the season! I mean, after soo many fanservices in the various animes, I was about to give up, until this and the other show. So I guess there are good ones here and there.

    • October 16, 2010 12:18 pm

      The Noitamina time slot delivers again! If I wasn’t already blogging Shiki (the other Noitamina timeslot series) I’d so be all over Kuragehime!

  3. October 16, 2010 5:23 pm

    I was really impressed with Kana Hanazawa here. Not really the biggest fan of her usually, but she really brings it here with great comic timing and a voice that’s waaaaaaaaaay different from her norm. Good stuff.

    • October 16, 2010 9:55 pm

      I was very pleasantly surprised by the range she shows in this series. Just goes to show you how good she can be with the right script and good direction.

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  1. Kuragehime 01 Enter the Jellyfish | Oishii Anime

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