Ongoing Investigations: Case #030

I randomly downloaded the first two episodes of the BL OVA Kirepapa. Since the OVAs were released almost 11 months apart, I am unsure if there is more planned in the series. So the title basically translates to Beautiful Dad, but let me assure you I went to great pains to make sure there was not incest. So far so good. The story centers around Chisato who is an aspiring author and his son, Riju, who is he very protective of (like a Dad who is super protective of his lovely daughter). Chisato is convinced that everyone, including his son’s best friend Shunsuke, are trying to get close to him. But actually Shunsuke is in love with Chisato, and Chisato can’t keep his eyes off Shunsuke. Now let the games begin. The show is, in a word, hilarious. The comedy is over the top and the serious moments are sooo overly dramatic that it is entertainingly funny. The animation quality is passable but the show is littered with a ton of bishonen. When I say a ton, I mean that every character that appears in the show is a bishie, including the grandfather, Shunsuke’s dad, and Chisato’s boss. It was truly enjoyable and I recommend it to BL fans in need of a laugh.

I finally got the Genshiken Fan Book I had pre-ordered a while back. I found it entertaining overall but some parts of the book puzzled me. The book was obviously written before the end of the manga because several important scenes are never mentioned in the appropriate sections. It starts with your standard premise of the manga and character profiles, and relationship guides. There is also Madarame’s otaku commandments which is basically the best of Madarame’s hard core otaku moments. It then has a guide to Kujibiki Unbalanced with a complete script to the first OAV which I felt was completely unnecessary and just pads out the book. There is a totally original Fanzine from the original Genshiken members that acts as an amusing piece of nostalgia for any older fans. We then have an interview with the (in)famous Ken Akamatsu about doujinshi. I am always surprised that Ken Akamatsu while not stunningly good looking is not that unpleasant to look at. There is then some original fan-fiction stories written by professional authors which were some of the better original content. There is then a guide to being an otaku with a little conversation about gal games between Sasahara and Madarame. The book ends with Shimoku Kio showing what shows he was actually talking about when he wrote up the Genshiken club members profiles as omake in the manga. It finally let me know what shows I was right about and what shows I had no clue about. I was amused that he picked everyone’s birthday and blood type based on what Gundam it would make them in the Gundam fortune-telling book. The book has the odd habit of explaining anything that might be unfamiliar as if the reader was not any type of otaku which is slightly odd. You would assume most people picking this book up were already in deep. Over all I enjoyed the book as a look back on Genshiken and what a great series it was.

Since Natsume Yuujinchou has been officially put up on Crunchyroll I have been catching up with the first season. I watched episodes 5-13 and cannot praise this show enough. It has a slow pace that builds a kind of kinship between you and Natsume. Each piece is a beautiful little story with many a melancholy end. Also good to see some human conflict coming up with the appearance of exorcists as well as others who can see youkai. I really like his interactions with Tanuma their friendship is really nice and was fun to watch in episode 13. I am still looking forward to learning more about Madara since he has sort of taken a backseat in many of these episodes. Wonderful show worth checking out by all!

To steal blatantly from Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Captain Harlock is about men who are real men, women who are real women, and small blue haired girls from cruel orphanages who are real small blue haired girls from cruel orphanages. Everyone else is a lazy bastard or corrupt. Harlock definitely has moments of epic space opera goodness but it also has scenes of Gatchaman level camp and some odd comedy. It is at its best when it deals with Harlock being a manly man with his own theme song doing manly things and whenever we deal with the main plot of the alien invasion. I always assumed that the whole series was serious business so I was not expecting Harlock looking after a little girl and the wacky antics of his crew. Also I did not realize there would be such a large divide between the character designs of people like Tadashi Daiba, Kei Yuki and the rest of the crew. Also any time a scientist gets killed in the series they make it almost as dramatic as someone important dying in Blade of the Immortal.

Read Here is Greenwood books four and five. It continues to be hilarious fun dorm life. I really enjoy when the characters talk to the manga-ka or she appears in the chapters. For example, at the beginning of the fourth book Shun and Hasukawa are pondering what Shinobu and Mitsuru were like as first years. There is then this hilarious exchange as the manga-ka laughs maniacally and tells them don’t they realize they just wrote themselves out of the story. Other such occurrences are frequent throughout the series. 

I decided to look at the first two episodes of Hajime no Ippo: New Challenger even though I never finished the first season. The only reason I never finished was I bought the series for my ex-roommate and he took it with him when he moved. Which reminds me I should pick up that series for myself. Since I had a good idea of who all the characters were from I had almost no problems settling in. They have a quick rather unobtrusive recap in the first episode to get anyone with a passing understand back up to speed. We have the standard Ippo has a HUGE penis jokes, Ippo’s slow moving relationship with his would-be girlfriend, and of course the real draw awesome boxing action. The boxing is a middle-ground between being ultra realistic and super move silliness. People have techniques and named moves proving Ippo is firmly shonen fighting but they are mostly grounded in reality with some pseudo-science to back up the rest. The series starts with the spotlight on Ippo’s rival fighting the Australian champ and his mysterious Blood Cross technique. Man oh man does this series lend itself to yaoi doujinshi. They even lampshade the homoerotic tension in the series between Ippo and Ichiro in a playful manner that is a trademark of the series.

Since I have been watching so much Natsume Yuujinchou, this is the pic of the week: