Tsugumomo – 06

I wonder if Osamu is a PC unlockable? Does he have a True Route…?

…I will say this, I’m not a player of many games these days, and I never really go into dating sims to begin with. But this adaptation of chapters 12 & 13 was quite well done!

Chapter One: We really didn’t get along

It’s almost too late for second thoughts, Kiriha

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It’s pretty rare that I give much thought to how much the show follows the manga; I’m a medium purist I guess, and demand that a medium obey its own rules rather that stay beholden to its original medium. But I’ll indulge in that pursuit for a bit, seeing as how this episode just dives right into its central trope. And if ever there was a trusty old canard in anime storytelling, it’s forcing the characters into a video game-like environment. Actually the trope is far older than electronic media, and you can chase it back to Gilbert & Sullivan, back to Shakespeare, back to Aristophanes. Let’s take our stock characters and our stock situation and introduce a magic catalyst that changes the situations by degrees and the characters by larger degrees, if it’s pulled off well. It’s pretty basic stuff, and it’s almost a tired old trope by now, but I think Hamada puts a great spin on it by focusing the turn on Chisato. She’s needed some character development and this is as good a narrative device as any.

Chapter Two: I think I fell in love with you

LOL. They even have the same silly, overused, cheesy, and generic “isn’t this magical?” music! (clip has sound!)

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Actually, it’s a really good narrative device to use if we have Chisato at the center. It’s not really a deconstruction, but it does serve as a nice poke in the eye to some of the unintended consequences in these games. None of us really fit into that string of multiple choice or flag generating events, just as none of us really fit easily into boxes we place ourselves and other in when it comes to real life. Games are good for that only because we can agree on the rules for ease of engagement. But, Ookada’s first mistake is against himself, as he assumes he’s just some homely dude that no one good looking would date. He might as well “lower his standards” and ask out an equally homely girl, right? Bad move, dude. At this point, I have to say the writing treated him as a pretty one-dimensional character, and I think that was on purpose. He’s meant to contrast against both Chisato and Kazuya, and he’s able to move the plot along, bud man,tossing in an insult – that he doesn’t really voice to anyone, but it’s not doubtful that it informs his opinions, and a typically tone-deaf and demeaning one at that – towards Chisato.

You said you’d stand by me in the middle of Chapter Three

Kiriha’s glare is almost enough to drill holes into heads….

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In that we have more than enough negativity to pour into his PC copy of Pure Heart, and this creates the newest amasogi. I love the strange way the monster-du-jour shows itself. So far we’ve had a creepy long haired spook, a possessed library and it’s book-golem, and now we have galgame UIs. It’s just innocent looking enough and just enticing enough to cover it’s horrifying intentions and belay worry – everyone seems to be enjoying themselves, seems being the operative word. And yes, it creates a special cherry tree on the school grounds where there was none before. I also love how Kiriha and Kazuya split the work, with Kiriha attuned to threat itself like she usually is, and Kazuya handling the real heavy lifting, even if that means he only has to learn to max out the game combos. That’s a neat detail, and it even goes a long way in showing Osamu’s depth of thinking, once agains giving him legs as supporting character, and giving him a bit of development. Getting the combos was the best way forward at the time, and he knew better than to take advantage of exploits, seeing as how this affected real people and he couldn’t predict the outcome – you know, kinda like how real life works. For all his otaku weirdness, he’s a good kid. But that just enforces how much Kazuya needs to use those free responses. If it weren’t for Ookada treating her like a flag in the first place, this wouldn’t be happening, so he has to change that dull multiple choice script, and take advantage of his childhood friendship with her and for her. Treating her like a person, and in the process, finding meaning in his own memories. That pretty much set’s things to right, bringing the doll full circle. It’s all over but the PC only Adults Only Ending.

But you were up to your old tricks in Chapters Four
Five and Six

Characters to become important later (contains two NSFW images!)

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Well, like I said a the top, I wanted to dive a bit more into the adaptation. They do end up leaving some chunks out, and they also end up combining a few plot elements together, but all in all the episode was as straightforward as it needed to be. The two manga chapters have a bunch of asides and a few end of chapter gag strips, but that would only break the flow of a television production, so I’m happy to include them here. In the meantime, I’m just going to assume some might come in as web only content or tipped into the discs later on as specials. I’m happy with the episode regardless. This was one of my favorite stories in the early run of the manga, and I’m happy to see that they did a bang up job with it. It succeeded in showing the real value in the friendship that both Kazuya and Chisato share, and it elevates her from just “helpful ally that fades into the background when the fighting starts” to someone that can add layers to the story in her own right. Yes, that’s a bit of foreshadowing. Next time, the show looks like it gets back to the wackiness in typical blunt force. The service is gonna get stupid-weird-ridiculous!

It’s gonna be the game where everyone wins!

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All around nerd that enjoys just about any anime genre. I love history, politics, public policy, the sciences, literature, arts...pretty much anything can make me geeky...except sports. Follow me @theskylion
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6 Responses to “Tsugumomo – 06”

  1. BlackBriar says:

    Ha ha! So the medium purist sometimes goes against the very things he stands for, eh? 😉

    If Tsugumomo has any weaker episodes in its total count, this would be the first to surface. The dating sim/gal game theme was an uncared for one since that stuff isn’t appealing to me in any way. Due to that, the option of speeding through the whole run was tempting but ignored simply for the sake of knowing the developments.

    Kiriha’s usual self and Osamu’s “wisdom” were sufficient distractions in the meantime.

    That last part before the end earned some WTF points when Kazuya woke up to find himself tied to his bed. Taking a page out of Big Order, are we, Chisato?

    • skylion says:

      Not in the slightest. I pointed out my stance without any sort of equivocation to it, and used that stance to point out that the show need not slavishly follow the manga point by point; and by doing so keep it kept the proper pace it needed to.

      The point of using the gal game was to point out flaws in gal games in how it reflects people’s personality and choices….

      As a manga, Big Order first came in in 2011, and this story was published circa 2006; so whom is taking a page from whom?

      • BlackBriar says:

        So, an adaptation after 11 years. It must have had very little appeal back then. A number of manga get minimum two to three years’ time before getting an adaptation.

        • skylion says:

          …from what I’ve been able to gather. It did start off as a webseries, and One Punch Man’s fame aside, that’s some self publishing development hell. It was considered derivative by many publishers, then he started to really ramp up on the service, and the dude is a freekin’ genius with anatomy. It’s sales have been good enough for years, but it was never considered a hot series at any point. So this show is probably a huge ad for it. I’m hoping ZZtop can correct me, so don’t take this as gospel. The latest volumes concerns a huge tournament that fans demanded for quite some time, so he really had to think about how to arrange that. Also, he’s be reticent about making a series anyway…it’s not that big an indicator of success….

  2. zztop says:

    I wonder if Osamu is a PC unlockable? Does he have a True Route…?

    In today’s gaming world, Osamu’s route would be provided as a chargeable DLC, whose price and mediocre content would be heavily criticized by gamers. The game’s director would then resign as apology, and the company would rehire another director who would remaster the entire game and rewrite the Osamu route to give it the romance and steaminess it deserves. And, it’s included for free.

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