Shirobako – 19

Shirobako-Nice and relaxing

Sometimes you just need some ‘me time’

winter15-highwEveryone heard that cavalry charge bugle call when Erika came in the door last week, right?

Musani’s “Red”, Iron Yano

Shirobako-Soon Andou will be smacking Tarou too

Andou needs to learn to smack Tarou. She’s getting close, tho.

I have no idea what that means, I just think it’s funny that Tarou called Erika “Musani’s Red”. We speculated last week what the return of Erika to MusAni means for episode 5, which was being seriously derailed by the negligent antics of Titanic and their lackadaisical staff. It doesn’t take long to get Erika up to speed on the current situation, even with a little bit of equivocation for the situation that Titanic is in, since they weren’t able to start working on their episode until a month after the original schedule said they would. I liked how they pointed that out to Satou, because it’s an important thing to remember working with subs, something she surely hasn’t had much experience with. But Erika’s also looking on another front to protect Aoi, besides trying to help her relax. And to do that, she engineers time for a conversation with Hiraoka.

Shirobako-Looking at the same glass different ways

Two people looking at the same glass different ways

The two Production Assistant vets have quite the conversation while Hiraoka drives them to Titanic, one which indicates that they’ve known each other quite a while, although they don’t get to exactly how they know each other. It’s interesting that Erika says she didn’t think that Hiraoka would actually come to work at MusAni, and given the way that his outlook on life is portrayed, where he consistently refuses to take responsibility for things when he can pass it off to someone else, where the means don’t matter, just the ends, and where pragmatism has exited the building in favor of a deep-seated cynicism, it is kind of a surprise that he’d come to a studio like MusAni, although unless you have done a lot of research into a company, you’re not going to know that much about the working culture there. How long will someone like him stay at a studio like that? And how many other places are there for him to go, given that this is his 5th company in 5 years. And while Aoi never thinks she has a particular dream she’s striving towards, both Erika and Hiraoka acknowledge that she has a dream about her work, and that she’s living in it, something that the both of them have long since ‘woken up’ from. But what differs is the attitude they have about people like that, where they annoy Hiraoka but are loved by Erika. If all you have is cynicism, then a true believer is the worst. But if you can feed off the energy of that true believer, then you’ll love being with that kind of person.

Shirobako-We welcome our new twintailed overlord

Crack that whip!

Inspiration from the Past

Shirobako-Visiting the past

What’s this thing?

Murakawa is never around, he’s always making food, but that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t know exactly what’s going on all the time. Dude’s supernatural about it, even. So when he needs to get something from the old Musashino Productions building (which MusAni is using as storage), he gets Aoi to go with him, even to the point of saying it’s ok for Satou to stay by herself. And what Aoi gets is a trip down memory lane. It’s one of those situations where the old guy gets to explain how things used to be done, and get some inspiration from the past. Coming at a time when Aoi’s wondering about how she can be someone who has such responsibility, when she’s totally new, it’s the kind of thing she needs to see to be reenergized and regain her positive outlook. It also helps that she finds out that Musashino Pictures did Andes Chucky. The trip down memory lane includes an extended flashback to the production of Chucky, with a lot of the older people we’ve seen so far, including Sugie and Ookura, with hippie Murakawa as the production desk. But that trip helps assure Aoi that what she’s feeling isn’t unusual, nor will it get in the way of producing something interesting. As we’ve seen a few times in this show, learning that other people have dealt with the same problems that you’re dealing with can be something that helps you realize that the light you see isn’t always the oncoming train.

Shirobako-Nice hair and glasses

I especially like the feathered hair

And maybe the other thing that Aoi is finally learning, from Murakawa, from Ookura, and others that she is encountering, is that not everyone has to go into anime with some dream. Sometimes the dream is just to be doing what you think is fun for now, and it turns into a career. And everything’s coming together for the production, with Erika working at Titanic for now to get them back on schedule, Iketani as the episode director, pressed into service by Erika. It still looks like a hard push, and it’ll be tough to make up that lost month with the character designs, but things are moving now, especially with the production staff. I’m sure that we’ll start to run into issues soon as the episodes need to be delivered (like we saw in the first cour), and that might be where Satou and Andou start having more trouble.Shirobako-ookura rises to the occasion

Ookura makes good



Should be nice this week, as the second OP and ED for Shirobako are released. I missed my Platinum Jet this week with the Andes Chucky opening filling in for the ending of the show. Another thing to look for is that a web preview of the bonus episode of Exodus is available online, and the bonus episode itself will be bundled with one of the blu-rays for the series. Looks like it is quite a bit of fun. And something else that’s fun is hazing new people. I’m surprised that Murakawa doesn’t do more of it at the old office, but he’s too nice. I’m reminded of a story from my work just recently, where we pulled out an old polar planimeter, and tried to get some of the new engineers to figure out even what it was. It was kind of amusing seeing them have no idea about something that I learned about on my very first day, but eventually we let them off the hook and showed them how to use it, and thereby drilled into their heads how much better NOW is than THEN. Hopefully Aoi can learn the same kind of lesson that classic quality doesn’t have anything to do with the classic tools, but more the classic care that people put into things.


Proving that you don't have to be young to love anime, I enjoy all genres and styles of shows. If it's not hurting anyone else, you should never be ashamed of what you like!
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5 Responses to “Shirobako – 19”

  1. Bobob101 says:

    The absolute best part of this episode was seeing the animals in Andes Chucky basically be the creative staff. And that theme song has to be released when I buy this show, I will definitely sing it a lot

  2. skylion says:

    What is it with this show that makes us want to watch the shows they are making?! Is this some kind of magic? I mean, one more, and PA has fan exceptions set for at least three years.

    Yes, I loved the trip down memory-studio. I’m a fool for how stuff gets done. It is interesting to see how even though the methods change, the passion never does.

    And…I’ve actually fiddled with one of them plainmeter’s on me Dad’s old drafting table…

    • Highway says:

      I’ll admit, nothing has pointed out as much to me how my eyesight has degraded as trying to read the vernier on a planimeter a little while ago. Thank goodness I don’t have to do that every day anymore. (And do you know the number one rule of planimeters?)

      For me, Andes Chucky isn’t really a show I’d be interested in seeing. Just doesn’t really click with me.

      • skylion says:

        Number one rule? Don’t try to eat them? I’m not an engineer, mate…

        Well, I suspect some fans out there will want an Andes Chucky..

        • Highway says:

          Number one rule is “always clockwise”.

          I’d imagine some folks would, but just saying for me it’s bottom of the list, below a bunch of other stuff.

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