Friday, July 6, 2012

Lilac's Impressions: Summer 2012 Season (Week 1)

I’m going to be starting a new thing here on LAR. I’m going to try and start following new series coming from Japan, as they air each season. My plan is to watch, only, the first four episode of each series and then decide wether or not I want to continue watching or just drop the series. I’ve already picked out nine new series of interest. So let’s see what week one has to offer.

Tari Tari
Episode 1

How best to describe Tari Tari, thus far, is probably a more mature version of K-On! Yes it is Moe and yes it does entail a music club. However, it’s not entirely full of sunshine, lollipops and rainbows. The story follows five high schoolers in a pretty elite school where one of the main focuses is music. Miyamoto, a senior, wants to take part in her choir club’s, however after an unknown incident from the year before, the club’s advisor, and school’s Vice Principal does not allow it. So, what does this girl do? Why, what every else in the world does! Starts a new choir club! From there, the episode is Miyamoto trying to recruit members into her club. First Sawa, a girl from her class and in the archery club. As well as Miyamoto’s brother Makoto. Though we don’t know for sure if he joined. She also tries to ask another student from her class, Sakai. However she has no interest. We aren’t told why she doesn’t want to join, but I’m guessing we’ll be told in the next few episodes or so. We are also introduced to two more classmates, Tanaka, the sole member of the badminton club, and Maeda a new transfer student having an interesting time getting used to Japanese culture. So far, I kind of like Tari Tari. It seems to have some charm to it, and I am looking forward to seeing what the next episode brings. I just hope I’m not disappointed.

Arcana Famiglia
Episode 1

From the start it’s chases and fights. I’m not joking. The first five minutes is a chase to catch the bad guys with action and exploding cars. But we do get a generally introduction into the cast of “competitors” in this new tournament style series. The Arcana Famigilia are a local mob of sorts that helps keep order on Regelo Island, a trade island. The head of the family, known as Papa, is retiring and is looking to find his successor. So he decides to hold a competition for those who signed contracts with the Arcana (Tarot cards, basically) for the right to be the next head. They will also have one wish granted, as well as the hand of daughter Felicta. This episode doesn’t do much besides establish the main characters and throw in the plot to get things rolling. What I will say, right now, is it better not try to smash everything together into its 12 episode run  like Deadman Wonderland did. Cause it won’t end well if it tried. But we shall see what happens in the weeks to come.

Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita
Episode 1

What the hell did I just watch? A skinned dancing chicken and a loaf of bread committing suicide? Mankind has Declined, as it translates into, is suppose to be just a simple show about fairies and what not. And, the first episode gives us a little bit more with the idea os a group of individuals who are mediators between humans and fairies; who also happen to investigate and solve anything related to them in their little village. But I’m very much concerned about this series. It all seems so sweet and innocent in it’s concept, but with moments like this I can’t help but be turned off by it. So far, this one is becoming a major disappoint for me. Though I will give it one more episode before calling it quits.

Chouyaku Hyakuninisshu Uta Koi
Episode 1

One of my hobbies, when I get around to it, is poetry. So when I heard about the plot of this series, I was curious to see what it would bring. And I think this may, possibly, be one of the underdog series of the season. The concept is a “liberal interpretation” of the Hayakuninisshu anthology through 110 romantic poems from 100 different poets. Episode one features two stories that intermingle together. First about Nirihara and his love for Takiko, the future bride of the Emperor. They have their fling and then we move on. The second half take place five years prior wit Nirihara’s older brother Yukihira and his duty of being a Governor and about more details about his younger brother. I, personally, like the first half compared to the second. It had a lot more going on for it rather then the second half, even though the first half was jumping around a bit. But the art style is gorgeous! It’s the same find of Photoshop wallpaper style we’ve seen in Gankutusuou and Zetsubou Sensei, albeit less noticeable. Despite the lack of interest from the second half, I’m going to keep going with this one for a while longer and see where it takes me.

Natsuyuki Rendezvous
Episode 1

Natsuyuki Rendezvous, from the start, was the series that first caught my eye when I looked at the list of series for the summer season. And I am very VERY glad I saw this. The first episode introduces us to Hazuki who, for the longest time, has had a crush on the owner of a flower shop, Rokka. When opportunity comes knocking, he decides to get a part time job at the flower shop. Little does he know, Rokka has a husband, Atsushi. However, he's been there for three years, and not exactly alive. Oh, who am I kidding, the guy's dead! And only Hazuki can see his ghost floating around and watching Rokka from the shop. By episode's end, Hazuki decides he's going to try and woo Rokka, even though her husband is still around. This series, so far, is my favorite of the season. Purely because it's a very charming and heart warming for a romance series. It's doesn't make it all goofy and try to play up characters as idiots, especially Atsushi (Can't even think about what would happen if they made him a goof ball). And it's not all that lighthearted either, bringing out a more solemn, real life kind of tone to it. It's something I haven't seen since... Well.... I don't know, actually, but I'm excited to see what's in store for this little trio. My only concern, right now, is Hazuki. Does he ever have a different facial expression? Oh well. I'm still gonna keep this one up for right now. I just hope it doesn't disappoint.

That all the series I got the chance to watch this week (Some hadn't aired/come out online subbed in time for this post). Next week, there will be more series to watch, including the second episodes of these five series listed. If you want to know the progress of each series, wether they've been dropped or not, then there will be side bars of the blog with a listing. See you next time!


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