|The second episode for the Houdzuki arc, finally! Can’t wait to see the excessive bromance here. All hail Houdzuki x Fudzuki! I’ll miss Natsume next week ='( How can I survive without my weekly dose of youkai? Sniff|
|Hey anaaga, hey folks! I’ll just use this part to say that I’m playing Mass Effect 3, thus why this post was delayed a bit. I’m an Adept Paragon who will be taking Earth back at some point. Damn reapers… anyways! Ep. 10 of Natsume, go!|
The Black Robes suspect that the Houdzuki before them is actually a human and goes to grab Natsume, who tells them to back off. Before Natsume is forced to remove his mask, Natori and Madara swoop in and save him and Hiiragi. As Natsume was being pushed down the river earlier, he thinks that he felt Houdzuki’s presence nearby and asks to investigate it again.
“Omg Houdzuki-sama, we’re, like, your fans and we, like, kinda, like, wants your signature”
Madara drops off Natori and Hiiragi at the building where they last were as they look for Houdzuki. One of the White Hats is there and Natori asks if Houdzuki is actually gone. After a bad joke, whitey explains that 3 years ago, an exorcist was testing his strength on a shrine that Houdzuki stayed in. They let it sit for too long, assuming that Houdzuki wanted to rest inside the seal for a while before breaking out in time for the festival. With his strength weakening, he would not be able to break it and was stuck in the seal. Whitey thinks that the seal might’ve been broken and Houdzuki has left, but we all know he’s around.
“Don’t worry, a harem king never leaves his harem.”
Natsume and Nyanko have found the seal and a little after Natori joins them. Natsume pokes his head down for a closer look and the Madara look-alike totally tongues him. Nyanko’s suggestion of eating him probably won’t do, but Natori’s sealing trick is always a win vs. pea-brained youkai.
Fat lady ain’t singing yet. Natsume’s got to bring it to the starting point and show proof of his capture, so Natori has a little bit of fun with the Black Robes to distract them as Natsume runs to the shrine. Tripping like a damsel in distress, stumbling about and running with all his might, Natsume returns to the start and shows proof of his capture.
Houdzuki… err, Natsume wins the festival! Fudzuki sensed that his opponent wasn’t actually Fudzuki and pushes the mask off, revealing Natsume to the crowd. Madara and Natori return to defend Natsume and present him a sealed stone with Houdzuki in it. Holding the seal in his hands, Natsume is able to break it and free Houdzuki.The two chat about how Houdzuki’s power is fading and that the festival is done for good. Thought to be enemies, Fudzuki offers to Houdzuki and his group to join him as they leave. The god accepts.
The next day, Natsume goes out to meet up with Natori and chats with Hiiragi. Because Natori was able to get through it all without banishing the gods, his reputation has bettered with other exorcists. Sparkling as he usually is with cute girls around him, Natori arrives.
Somehow they look similar
Invisible bitch slap
Oh look, Kryptonite
“Yay my tattoo makes the background red!”
The charm of this episode is how expressive the characters are in their own ways. Their feelings are not as simple as how it looks like, and yet each one of them can make it look so modest in their own way. Hiiragi’s trust in Natori is so immeasurable, and it can be seen from her speech to one of Houdzuki’s minion. The same goes to the tsun Madara, how he’s doing something that contradicts his own words for the sake of Natsume’s safety. The best of all, Natori pats Natsume’s head as Natsume falls into slumber, which I find the most meaningful of all. It can represent so many things at once, from brotherly love to appreciation, sometimes a little bit of proudness and admiration. This is a subtle guidance saying that little things in life do matter and needs to be appreciated more.
The squeee-able relationship between Houdzuki and Fudzuki is something special in its own. After thinking about it for a loonng time (literally), I just realized how both of them are noticeably representing the Yin Yang sign. Or Thing. Whatever it is. From clothing to their roles in the Festival, it’s pretty obvious there. And yet Houdzuki is the sole reason why Fudzuki kept visiting the mountain for the festival. Without Houdzuki, there won’t be Fudzuki. Heck, Fudzuki is so fond of Houdzuki to the point where he proposed offered a place for Houdzuki in his journey. There’s no Yang without Yin, and vice versa. Two opposite sides that needs each other. I couldn’t help but asking myself (as usual), is the “evil side” necessarily unneeded in this world? Of course I did ask more questions, but I’ll stop here because the rest are touchy questions. Either way, I love their bromance, and I’m shipping them like mad now. Need some Houdzuki x Fudzuki doujins.
As for Natsume, he was offered plenty of “jobs” here. First is being an exorcist, and the second is being a “god.” I wasn’t too concerned about the exorcist, but I thought it would be interesting to see Natsume as a real god. In the flashbacks, Houdzuki and Fudzuki looked like humans in a human festival to me. Were they humans? Was their devotion so strong to the point where they transcended into gods? If that’s the case, is there a possibility that Natsume can be a god? Is there a chance that Reiko is a god right now? Man, I want to see them as gods now.
But will Natsume be happy being a god? If he’s a god, he will have to cast off the human side. Can he do that? The people he loves will wither away while he’ll live forever among the youkai. Won’t the guilt eat him away? Oh, if only there’s a third option where Natsume can choose both sides. Unfortunately, the line between the human and the youkai is very clear here, and there’s no way Natsume can choose both sides. That’s probably why Natsume is refreshing; there’s no cheap Halfling solution plot to make everybody happy. In Natsume, one has to choose. So, think about your decision, Natsume! Make sure you won’t regret it!
I’ll admit that my initial impression after watching the episode was just, oh, another episode of Natsume. I liked the first episode of the arc better than the second. One thing that I loved so much about the arc featuring Tanuma a while ago was how many things I could take away from it; the friendship of Natsume and Tanuma evolving, Madara and how he only ever knew 2 humans and Natsume’s fears of his friends getting hurt. In this arc, I don’t really feel like I can take away as much from Natori as I would’ve hoped for. It’s commonplace the things he did and I don’t feel as though he actually grew. Saying, “his reputation improved” just isn’t satisfying a conclusion enough for me. When we see Tanuma again, I feel we’ll get that glint of past events; I don’t think we’ll be seeing that from Natori since those two already kind of get along.
You see those pictures up above of the “action” scenes in this episode, all really cool looking. With the guys sealing the youkai, I thought that scene looked kind of like Guilty Crown with how the strands move around OHMA SHOE, just with darker strands. Yuujinchou doesn’t really do a lot of key animating or more action-intensive scenes, which is why whenever Brain’s Base does, it’s always nice looking.
So next week is an episode about Natsume’s past? And on his parents as well? That’ll be interesting. The two episodes of his past in San were probably my favorite episodes of that season. I might have mentioned that I’d love to see Reiko’s past some more (apparently that happens later on), but there still seems to be quite a lot about Natsume that needs telling. I’m really looking forward to it.
Episode 11 Preview: More about Natsume’s past, this time focusing on his parents. Natsume will have to face his past. Will he finally see his past in a different light? Possibly the best Natsume arc EVERRR