time for some new anime
Tuesday, October 28, 2008 1:03:53 AM
Ten days ago I started watching Toradora! (とらドラ, which is a sort of acronym for "tiger/dragon"), so far I'm up to episode four of this rather manic comedy. This is the series whose latest episodes I most look forward to, though I am totally unable to explain why since I don't really like crazy comedies, and especially not ones with psychotic girls who keep punching people (i.e. the titchy Taiga), but for some reason I like this one, perhaps because I have a soft spot for cheerful athletic crimson-haired girls who are so crazy about puddings that they make them in buckets (ie. the manic Minori).
Six days ago I started watching Kannagi (かんなぎ), and have just finished ep.3, it's sub-titled "Crazy Shrine Maidens", though in fact it's about a kami (spirit or goddess) of a sacred tree of a Shinto shrine that got cut down leaving the kami homeless until a teenage boy carves part of the tree trunk into the goddess's likeness (he had seen a manifestation of her as a young child). Anyhow the statue comes to life and when I say she takes the form of a cute girl in an extremely short miniskirt and moves in with him you can probably guess the rest.... well that's what I thought at first, and as this was another crazy comedy I was seriously considering dropping it after a couple of episodes, since I'd really rather watch a serious drama about nature spirits etc, but luckily I stuck it out to episode 3 and it's started to become interesting as it turns out that this girl is not the first kami to have taken human form in the recent past....
Finally, one day ago I started watching Kurozuka (黒塚), after one episode I can confidently say that this one is definitely not a comedy, in fact I am still wiping the bloodstains off my monitor.... It seems to be based on a Noh play of the same name (also known as Adachi ga hara: 安達原). (Actually I have a feeling that one of the stories in Rumiko Takahashi's Urusei Yatsura is based on this too, the name ringa a bell)
It starts as a period drama of some samurai types who after a run-in with some bad guys and some heavy slaughtering end up staying the night with a woman who lives in the middle of nowhere and turns out to be some kind of immortal who drinks people's blood or something. It's reminiscent of one of those old Japanese folk tales as recounted in Lafcadio Hearn's book Kwaidan: Stories and Studies of Strange Things (published in 1904) which I've been reading recently (you can probably find it online somewhere as it's public domain by now). Anyhow, I'm intrigued enough to have downloaded the second episode, since I understand that this immortality tale is going to span right to the present day, although it starts in some medieval period.