That one character we all forgot about solves a mysterious mystery.
I want to give my thanks to everyone who gave their congratulations earlier. I’m happy to be a part of the staff here, and I hope we can have a lot more fun together. I think we will all get along as long as you can get used to my constant tendency to veer in the direction of the sarcastic. Anyway, I’ll also be reviewing Soredemo Machi wa Mawatteiru, so let’s get this show on the road.
Kyokai looked at the first episode of this series a while back, so let’s have a look at everything that’s happened since then. Actually, seeing as this series isn’t terribly plot driven, let’s first take a look at the interesting characters that have been introduced so far. Aside from the main characters Hotori and Tattsun, we have Sanada, Tattsun’s crush who incidentally has a crush on Hotori, Hotori’s math teacher Moriaki-sensei, who can’t stand being defeated by Hotori, Hotori’s little brother Takeru, the tomboyish third year Kon, and Eri, Takeru’s cute tsundere one-episode-appearance classmate.
Some highlights in the past few episodes were (trying not to spoil them) Hotori defeating Moriaki-sensei in a battle of logic, Hotori and the maids unraveling the mystery of Moriaki-sensei’s mysterious four-eyed painting, Eri dragging Takeru around, Hotori and Takeru’s midnight trip, and the maid rock band.
Konna no rokku ja nai!
I was actually going to do episode 8 at first, but since I kept putting it off due to important things like exams, meetings, drinking for eight hours straight and the subsequent hangover of the century, the subbed episode 9 was already released! I definitely enjoyed the culture festival part of episode 8, and I even went through the trouble of uploading the full version of the insert song to YouTube. The music file caused some problems in Windows Movie Maker, which gave me a huge headache, so to make sure that my efforts weren’t in vain, here it is now.
Kind of a silly song, but the folksy style was enjoyable for me. Incidentally, this song is on the ED Single, which Kyokai posted about here. Now, on to episode 9!
Price is negotiable.
We start the episode with a silly little vignette featuring Shizuka, the owner of the town’s antique shop. I conveniently forgot to mention her earlier because I thought she was unimportant (and she was not as cute as Ebi-chan), but lo and behold, this episode is all about her. Shizuka gets a surprise visit from a suspiciously green-haired wife who wants to sell an ugly vase for any price. Soon after, the husband comes and buys the vase back for any price. In case you guys don’t know economics, this is when dollar signs should appear in your eyes: PURE PROFIT. The cycle actually continues several times, and at the end, Shizuka ends up with something like 270000 yen, which is equal to several thousand American dollars. Nice catch.
Hotori gracefully returns.
The first part of the episode takes place during a PE exam where the boys play basketball and the girls do a bunch of weird gymnastics tricks. Naturally, since this is an anime, we have girls staring through the center fence at how manly the boys are and, later on, visa versa. After screwing up her gymnastics flip, Hotori challenges Tattsun to ping-pong, after which she is promptly destroyed.
We… we’re not being creepy at all!
I had actually forgotten that Tattsun used to be part of the ping-pong club. It was mentioned in the first episode, but who remembers little details like that? We were busy listening to P-ko… I mean Hotori goof around.
Extreme table sports, to the nth power.
Soon afterwards, Haribara (the girl… with the TEETH) challenges Tattsun to a shounen-esque ping-pong battle. They kept throwing around difficult words like “the strongest” and “shinigami” that I almost forgot we were talking about ping-pong. You know, that game where you hit this 2.7 gram ball back and forth on a table? Anyway, we have the match of the ages, according to that random side girl who suddenly appeared this episode, and some suitable epic background music.
This is… the food of the gods!
After Tattsun’s inevitable defeat, we move on to the second part of the episode, “Collector’s Frenzy.” This features a mystery story where a mystery man buys a mystery snack from a mystery shop and mysteriously distributes it to mys… normal people on the streets of Tokyo. Shizuka discovers this so-called “Rainbow Delight,” and decides to take it upon herself to solve the mystery of this phantom store.
She uncovers that the shop’s phone number is no longer in use, there’s no information available about the shop on the Internet, and the city that the shop’s address indicates doesn’t even exist. The only clue she has is the zip code, so Shizuka packs up for a trip to that region. After asking around a bit, she discovers two very important clues: 1) nobody knows what she’s talking about, and 2) she wasn’t the first traveler looking for the Rainbow Delight. Did I mention that it was a mystery?
Shizuka has a trippy dream about discovering the phantom city through a secret door before coming to her senses and going back home. She relates her tale to the maids, after which Hotori promptly solves the mystery: the Rainbow Delight is from the future! There’s no way that we could make strangely colored food with our current technology! Yep, we definitely don’t have anything in existence that changes the color of food without changing the taste. Nothing at all. The “10” in the expiration date didn’t mean 2010… it meant 2310 or something.
Apparently changing the past isn’t a crime if it was a tasty change.
No, seriously, it did. We find out that the mystery man really was a time-traveler from the future, interestingly named Ryosuke Moriaki. Yes, Moriaki, spelled the same way as Moriaki-sensei. His plan was to distribute the Rainbow Delight in the past to make people desperately hunt for it. The result? The Rainbow Delight is now a common snack in the year 2310. But I still have no clue where he got the original packages. If the store really didn’t exist in the year 2010, then where was that mystery shop? 1910? 2110? The mystery man was a time-traveler, after all.
And so was that suspiciously green-haired wife, apparently.
MORE PIC SPAM
Hotori, I am your father.
It’s elementary, my dear Tattsun.
Sanada is a poet.
By the way, I’m a vegetarian.
It’s… it’s not like I’m good at everything for your sake!
I was happy that they included another mystery in this episode. I think the only one before this was the one with Moriaki-sensei’s creepy portraits, which Hotori also solved, and that one was also interesting in a creepy way. The mysteries in this series follow the same style as the rest of the stories: mundane, yet surreal. The scenarios aren’t particularly exciting, yet they set it up so that instead of just asking, “Where?” or “How?” we ask more relevant questions like, “Where the hell?”, “How the hell?”, and the most important… “question”… of them all, “Hurry up and tell me the answer now!”
The ping-pong battle seemed like kind of a waste of half an episode to me, but I guess it was there to tell us that Tattsun is good at stuff. I could kind of relate to her when she was talking about how she’s good a lot of things, but not great at anything. The “wall” she describes is due to a lack of motivation. Even if you are very good at picking things up for the first time and rapidly learning the basics like Tattsun (and me!), there’s a point where you won’t get any better unless you work like crazy. At that point, you stop getting better, and eventually the true hard workers will overtake you. The bottom line is, to all you impressionable young minds out there: even if you have talent in something, you still need to work hard to become great!
For those of you who’ve either dropped this series or haven’t started at all and are thinking about catching up on it, I have a few things to warn you about. I do recommend it if you enjoy pointless comedies, but I noticed that this series gets pretty bad ratings on anime sites. The first warning is that the animation really sucks. You can tell just from the OP and ED that they are really bad at animating performances. For people like me who actually play those instruments, it’s so bad to the point of being distracting, but you’ll have to do your best to overlook it. The second warning is that this series uses a lot of still shots, kind of like Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei and Bakemonogatari (surprise, also SHAFT works). It’s not necessarily bad, but I noticed that some people don’t really like that style. If you can get over these things, then go watch it!
We only get episode titles for the previews, and episode 10 is named “The finger-pointing geriatric” according to my subs. The episode titles for this series are pretty odd in general, so I have no clue what’s coming up besides the possibility of involving a doctor.
Until next time!