Your Weekly Aya Hirano: Trolls and Shower Scenes

A post on Haruhi ep 14 and Jewel Pet ep 14.

1. HARUHI TROLL

Huh, KyoAni, don't you?!

Huh, KyoAni, don't you?!

I’d seen the reviews coming out on the 14th episode of Haruhi and noticed how they were full of outrage.  Everyone was complaining about KyoAni’s trolling once again: the Endless Eight rigmarole is unwatchable, some said (I’m paraphrasing, no one actually used the word “rigmarole”) etc etc.  Because I loved how episode 13 was full of visual deviations from episode 12, I initially thought people were overreacting again.

Having seen the episode, though, I kinda have to agree with everyone: this is a TROLL.  While there were lots of different angles and shots, they were really mundane and inferior.  For example, this time we see Haruhi’s ball land on Mikuru’s head from far away: the result is not nearly as funny (and that’s disregarding the fact that we’ve seen this happen twice already).

whatever

whatever

Maybe it’s just me, but it even felt like the voice actors were getting bored in this episode.  Haruhi/Hirano herself sounded so lifeless.  I guess the underlying concept here is interesting: we’re watching a play in which the script is pretty much set in stone, and the actors are the same, but the directions and emphases are different.  That said, I can’t see anyone marathoning Haruhi in the future sitting through episodes 12-?? back to back!!  And that’s a bad thing…

2. JEWEL PET SHOWER SCENE

Indeed, this show has got it all.  I guess Garnet got the shower scene to compensate for the fact that she’s getting 5 lines to Ruby’s 100!  Seriously though,  each episode manages to have more than enough laughs to make it worthwhile watching, and the story is developing!!

Gratuitous Garnet

Gratuitous Garnet

I really empathize with the writers here: even though this is a children’s fantasy heavily oriented toward magic, nothing is left unexplained, and so the adult watcher like me can be totally satisfied.

The most glaring example is the expanding presence of Jewel Pets in our world.  We learned a while back that the witches from the Jewel Land cast a spell on the humans of Takaragaseki City so that they will accept the existence of Jewel Pets freely and easily, besides keeping them a secret from the rest of the world.  Later, when journalists break the Jewel Pet story outside of Takaragaseki, a spell is cast on the entire world.

Jewel Pet rooms bigger than most Japanese houses...

Jewel Pet rooms bigger than most Japanese houses...and messier.

It’s a very simple plot addition, but I’m impressed that the writers had the presence of mind to introduce it.  How many shows do we see where people accept amazing phenomena without a second thought??  The whole process of Pets showing up and choosing their owners has been nicely settled too.  All in all, the story’s tight.

In this episode the witches from Jewel Land finally figure out that Diana is the one causing all the trouble.  As it turns out, she caused a great war in the human world years ago [images look like WWII!!], and the witches were the ones who finally stopped her.  Now she’s at it again.

The episode ends with Ruby making Diana very angry, and then boastfully giving up her name when Diana asked for it.  This move didn’t work for Ulysses in the Odyssey (vs Polyphemus), and I’m sure it will turn out badly for Ruby too…  Looking forward to the next episode!

~ by Haloed Bane on July 6, 2009.

8 Responses to “Your Weekly Aya Hirano: Trolls and Shower Scenes”

  1. Ironically, I used to be mad at Haruhi for skipping episodes. Now I think it wouldn’t be such a bad idea…

  2. Yea I’m not liking what KyoAni is doing with Endless Eight as well. I can think of about 4 main reasons on top of my head, but maybe I’ll talk about it when I’m doing my summer season impression (if i do one..).

    One thing I have trouble understanding is, why is people praising KyoAni for ‘not being lazy’ by changing camera angles, kimonos, swim suits, different ways of saying ‘these are my subordinates’, etc. Really?…Was that really creative -__-

  3. Oh yeah, I finally checked out Jewel Pet – it was awesome! Cast is excellent and bunny expressions are priceless!😀

  4. Well it’s a LITTLE better then just showing the same ep again. However I agree that this is pushing it. Just skip Haruhi untill they get on with the conclusion of this arc.

  5. Being part of the minority who felt Haruhi episode 14 was superb, I’d admit that your point about the potential rewatching experience is an important criticism, considering how much of the original’s appeal was based in the joy of second viewings.

  6. I was optimistic watching the second Endless Eight episode, because at the end, there was a major plot change. But really, the 3rd ep was 98.76% identical! More than that, many scenes were not animated anymore, but shown as still pictures. Meh. -_- So far I completely agree with you.

  7. “(I’m paraphrasing, no one actually used the word “rigmarole”)”

    I wish people did use the word “rigmarole”. That would make anime commentary much more interesting.

  8. @Raptor

    Be careful what you wish for…

    @gaguri

    Oh, they could do these variations forever, and i would call them good only if they gave a new flavor to the episode. IMO episode 13 had such a distinct flavor. But anyway, it’s ridiculous.

    @Kitsune

    Glorious dawn of a new day! You have saved 1,000 furry fairies with your thoughts there. Hurrah!

    @Flame

    Slave that I am, I’ll probably watch each episode in the arc, but I draw the line at rewatching!!

    @coburn

    Yup, I think we can all take our pick on our favorite of the 3 episodes (12,13,14) based on our own aesthetic appreciation. I happen to love 13, you happen to love 14. But the conflation of all together, while awesome in principle, is a drag in practice.

    @Gargron

    Yes, I felt like this last episode was more minimalist, compared to 13 which was maximalist and 12 which was, well, normal. Maybe that’s the aim…

    @Sorrow

    Yes, the power of words, my friend.

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