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Archive for February, 2011

Yet another episode not just rich in character development, but moving the plot in a shocking speed as well! I didn’t expect some of the twists I’ve seen, or even how fast we got the ones I was suspicious of. I’ll try to note how I saw each character “grew up” in this episode:

Sayaka: Continued her breakdown until she utterly got shattered. I felt something like this would happen along the lines but I admit I was surprised when Sayaka ended up transforming into a Witch herself. If Witches are broken Majokko, what’s the deal with Familiars then?

Kyouko: Apparently her speeches about caring only for oneself are mere words. Kyouko couldn’t hide her sympathy toward Sayaka, who was like a mirror of her older self, and was actually protecting her in the dark. Too bad she couldn’t save Sayaka anyway but witnessed her last moments as a Mahou Shoujo instead. (I wish to know what’s the deal between Kyouko, Homura, and the Walpurgis by the way..)

Homura: Two things I suspected about Homura before and both of them were revealed in this episode. The first one is how she was secretly caring for ONLY Madoka from the start. I love how it was cleverly hidden in the ED clip from the start (you should notice how only the silhouette of Homura turns toward Madoka as she runs). The second thing is her true fragile nature behind all the cold-blooded act (she didn’t hide it well when Madoka threw the Soul Gem away before haha). I’m eager to know the relationship between her and Madoka now. If Homura is a time traveler then there are endless possibilities for what it might be. It must have something to do with the intro scene with Madoka’s first dream, I’ll bet on it! XP

Madoka: There is clearly no turning back to her cute innocent life again. She got too involved in the matter when she shouldn’t have. I dunno how it will work for her. But I know I don’t want her to become a Majokko, especially after the messed up ideas of becoming a goddess were put in her head. That would be the worst-est of worst outcomes that might ever happen. I was so shocked and GLAD that Kyubey got that shotgun blowing his head!

Kyubey (Incubator!): The “creepiest mascot” might not fail to secure this title for eternity after all! I mean like, you get your head blown then you eat your remains with a new container like it’s nothing?! I can’t hold my disgust.. It seems he’s challenging Homura to save Madoka heads on from now on. Kyubey also reveals one more secret behind the Mahou “Shoujoof them “growing” into Witches, but still doesn’t tell his ultimate role in the process. He’s the “Incubator” though, and he eats a lot of freakin’ stuff, so we can’t tell what is he incubating exactly. Is it the Majokko souls entrapped in Soul Gems? Or Grief Seeds that give rise to Familiars? Or something even worse? Hmm, is it safe to consider Incubator to be the “bearer” of the main villain of Madoka Magica by now?

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It’s hard to get interested when the plot moves too slow then characters hardly develop. I’m not really a fan of how things are handled in Hourou Musuko, but I got involved already now I have to see how it ends haha. So how do I see it handled? We have a dozen of characters, each with loads of hidden interests and secrets. We know little of it. Only when an interesting situation is created, we see some new revelation that is supposed to surprise the other characters, us, or both. Well, we hardly get surprised when we don’t understand what’s really going on underneath, but let me stop my mini rant for now. Even if it wasn’t that good, this setting kinda worked in this episode.

There is one scene that I enjoyed at the first half before we got back to the same old drama later on. That’s when the group were helping in Saori’s house. First was when Saori Chiba got madly jealous and started scrubbing the kitchen in frustration. Then second when her “boyfriend” came in. He revealed Nitori’s secret like it was nothing so we got to see a lot of faces surprised haha. My biggest surprise though was that Nitori’s himself didn’t mind, he was actually kinda happy that his friends figured this “awkward” stuff about him.

Then we saw the “boyfriend” trying to act cute in the bath! Will someone go that far to attracts whom he likes? I don’t want to imagine that. XP

The rest was like, eh, we know that already. So what.. Oh at least I liked the couple who got randomly chosen to be Romeo and Joliet, I’m thankful it didn’t turn out to be Nitori and Takatsuki. Then there is also this bit where Makoto said to Nitori “You wouldn’t understand..” in a weird situation, wait does that mean he likes him?!

Chizu was my favorite in this episode. Her over-excited nature sure makes up for all the boring reactions we see from others in the series so far. 😄

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If I was only liking the characterization in Madoka Magica before, now I’ve definitely fallen in love with it. This episode focused solely on fleshing the personalities out, and how it worked? Amazingly, let me tell you that!

Kyubey: It can’t be clearer than that how Kyubey thinks humans are inferior to “him”. He takes actions on what he thinks is appropriate without the slightest consideration of their thoughts. He “sells” one thing, miracles. Then the Mahou Shoujo has to “pay”. How exactly? It seems everyone believes that they’re paying on their own way. But does Kyubey even seem to care about that?! The scam can’t be ignorant about how he gets his “payment”. For one, he eats Grief Seeds (which are eggs the Witches lay after eating people, also “spiced” by the Majokko’s worries), so I bet Soul Gems are even tastier food then! *Think about Madoka’s Soul yum yum!*

Homura: The smartest Mahou Shoujo no doubt about it. She understands the value of Kyubey’s merchandise and she knows how “impossible” it is to pay back. She tries to prevent the formation of new contracts, but when a contract is done then she doesn’t interfere. Or she wishes that she wouldn’t interfere. Homura thinks she’s not a human anymore, but the moment she drops her guard all her human emotions appear. I want to see all her conflicts worked out because she deserve to find peace at the end..

Madoka: No, she’s not just sitting there doing nothing. Her role is as important as everyone’s else, I might argue even that it is the most important. From the start, Madoka was the door to humanity of all the Majokko. Mami didn’t rest until the moment Madoka assured her that she was not a lone spirit fighting evil, but a human being that needs acknowledgment as well. Homura is always getting attracted to Madoka and opening up little by little. Now even Sayaka won’t remember that she is human until Madoka reminds her about it. I want to see Madoka interacts with Kyouko as well, and I think this must happen before the moment Madoka becomes a Majokko herself.

Kyouko: I liked Kyouko before. She didn’t just live to my expectations but jumped miles over them! Her story of how she became a Majokko couldn’t be more fitting to how her character was built up until the moment she told it. I sympathize with her. It’s clear to her where stands in all of this, so I wonder how Madoka might be able to change her mind if things take the direction I wish for. Also, Kyouko has a great talent in telling stories that was quite an act in there!

Hitomi: Yes, that’s a bit of a surprise here. When I thought the focus on main characters was already enough, a bit of interesting development in Hitomi came across. It might be a little thing that she also likes Kamijo (whom I hate by the way), but the way she brought it up made her the girl I would choose for sure haha. She showed how mature girls should act in these love situations. Thumbs up from me here!

Sayaka: The heroine of this episode. Sayaka became a ticking bomb the moment she transformed into a Majokko. But honestly, I didn’t expect neither how fast she would explode nor the way she did! I would find this ridiculous before, then all what she’s been through in one episode made the course she took in the end so much believable. Amazing twist of events. I love it. So much. I didn’t like Sayaka before and now she is one of the favorites. I admit I’m not a fair judge, so that balanced my reasoning since I like all the heroines now. 😄

 

I couldn't pass on adding this cap here, what a scene it was! =O

 

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Great episode I gotta say that! The conversation between Madoka and her mom contains some lessons I believe we should apply in our lives. Though I bet mama chan didn’t expect how reckless her advice for Madoka was at the moment. Or Madoka didn’t get how it works. Or.. Kyubey just proved that it is the filthiest creature ever! I go with the last option with a bit of the second. Mama chan is innocent, she never said anything about throwing others’ stuff away. That’s as blunt as begging for troubles to come haha.

Honestly though, how can anyone not suspect Kyubey to be the one behind the biggest troubles by now? It keeps nagging Madoka to become a Majokko despite how there are enough in one place causing everyone’s share of problems. It even asked Sayaka for it this time. Eating rotten Grief Seeds as an extra job can’t be a safe thing to do either. What’s more disturbing, it hides vital information from the Majokko and blame them for not being careful about it! I would do much more than what Kyouko did in the situation. I wanted to see Homura torture it like she did before. But oh well.. Let’s forget Kyubey’s nastiness for now, the revealed concept of Soul Gems is quite interesting. I loved how it explained all the convenience you get by transforming your soul into a smaller object and using your body as a “giant robot” instead. Smart.

And “Walpurgis Night”? I can’t say much about it and it might be too soon to discuss it when we’re still waiting for things with Madoka to move on. How far can it go before she finally decides to join the action?!

Also, Sayaka is shallow and stupid. Period.

p.s. I almost missed “MORNING RESCUE!!” but then it gave me a good laugh by the end 😄

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originally written in vanyamania.blogspot.com .. January 4, 2011

This is the first time for me writing about something as soon as I finish from it, so I’m still jammed with emotions and my head isn’t clear about it. I know one thing for sure though, what I just watched is a valuable jewel that anyone who has the slightest interest in Japan’s history should treasure. No, Sarai-ya Goyou is not a historical show. It admirably deals with humanity. But it also has one of the best representations I’ve seen of the Samurai and Edo, if not the best at all!

Sarai-ya Goyou storytelling and pace feel natural from start to finish, so you’ll end up soaked in the atmosphere the second you set your eyes on the screen. First, You’re introduced to a weak-looking desperate Samurai named Masanosuke who is jobless at the time. Then a fearless-looking man named Yaichi offers him a job as personal bodyguard for fun, and events continue to flow from that moment on. Visuals are captivating, I quickly fell in love with the heartwarming color style then I was clearly hypnotized by that.

Not only the art will suck you in, the music is going to vacuum you, too! I’m a fan of traditional Japanese instruments. Because like any other traditional instruments, you feel their own culture behind their melodies. That sounds perfect for the historical setting Sarai-ya Goyou has, and it indeed is. I hope you’re not imagining any generic historic soundtracks by now, because that certainly isn’t the kind of thing you’ll be hearing here. Yeah, all these old wind, string, and percussion instruments are amazing lonesomely. But that didn’t stop the composers from adding some genius twists as well, one of them is the piano playing in some tracks. I won’t ruin this ear-candy experience for you any further, try and hear it on your own! ;3

I can’t believe I didn’t get to watch Sarai-ya Goyou while it was airing back then, yet I’m kind of glad that I didn’t. I wouldn’t be able drink it off in one shot if I did. I wont excuse myself though, I missed it from my top ten list of last year. But I guess a late mention is better than none, right?

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The more I watch of Hourou Musuko the more I remember that nasty period we had to go through in our lives. I can’t get the weird stuff these middle-schoolers pay too much attention anymore. Teenagers are without doubt the hardest to deal with no matter how much you think you understand them. They’re so.. Unpredictable? I feel sorry for parents facing this “nightmare” now. But since I have no responsibility here, l will have fun trying to pretend I know what I’m talking about! X3

While Chiba Saori might seem the creepiest one with hidden intentions in her mind, I believe she’s the sanest person and most mature in the class. I love her blunt honesty and how she’s not afraid of making enemies out of it. I am also amazed in how she kept her temper when Makoto was pushing by simply telling him “You’re mean” haha. Then comes stupid Shuichi. While he thinks he’s ready to transform into a girl for the boy-wannabe Yoshino to like him, Saori subtly revealed that she already sees him as a girl. Then her wish is for him to transform into a man who loves her. She admitted it when she said that she wrote the twisted version of “Romeo And Joliet” wishing for him to be her Joliet, while he wrote the same piece to be the gender bending Romeo with Yoshino as his Joliet. Confusing right? But nevertheless it’s smart.

If Shuichi and Yoshino shopping while both of them were cross-dressing wasn’t awkward enough, that confession afterward was definitely perplexing. I don’t like these two. Shuichi only has a chance if Saori was able to fix him somehow.

But then again poor Saori seems as lost as the rest of us here. When she was told all about it, the only thing that came to her mind was  to go visit the church and pray for god. I’m sympathizing with her with my heart. I understand how hopeless she can be when she thinks about those messed up people all around.

Want my advice Saori? Look for someone else. The freak-show happening doesn’t suit unless you end up revealing the creepiest secrets of all! XP

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I kissed him yesterdy.. Maybe he caught my cold..” Haha Maho is so innocent and cute. Pre-puberty days are the strange thing here! (I also couldn’t help but laugh at Shuichi’s remark last episode when he noticed how it smelled when the boys were changing XD)

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