Archive for the 'marimite' Category

Maria-sama ga mieru

Sunday, August 5th, 2007

Steven expresses bewilderment at its popularity. Obviously, the appeal of shoujo is lost on him, but here’s one picture Omo posted:

There must be some redeeming values. BTW, IIRC girls were minded by their father, who apparently is a fan. Unfortunately, I do not remember where I read about it (I thought it was Minaide Hizukashi but apparently not?).

Marimite 01-03

Tuesday, August 26th, 2008

I ignored Maria Sama ga Miteiru for years, in an apparently mistaken belief that it was a dykefest. But about a year ago, truth began to emerge, and just in time for the R1 release by TRSI (praise the Dark Lord). You can even get it on Netflix now, which is good, because the first volume contains shameful 3 episodes (Gurren-Lagann, also a sub-only release, offers 5).

Marimite is one of those series which seem created to underscore the importance of the correct frame of mind (see also, Jason Miao Teaches the World to enjoy Muteki Kanban Musume). For three quarters of the first episode, I kept thinking: “Why am I watching this shit?”. The art and animation being unusually bad for J.C.Staff did not help any.

Only during the meeting scene I cracked the code: it’s the lulz. “So, as you can see, me and — Yumi-chan, was it? — are quite well acquainted!”. The comedy often comes through to save anime, like the way it recovered the floundering and mediocore Kamichu circa ep.13 (by DVD count). Once I focused on the comedy of the petty intrigue, things started looking up in Marimite.

Another personal thing is that I am familiar with mentorship, and it is often comic too: my last two mentees quit the company while under advisement. I suppose others can relate to something else, like ginko nuts.

From an apersonal standpoint, the show is mostly unremarkable. For example, Yumi’s eyes look like a rejected prototype for Chiyo-chan’s eyes. Suguru being a dickhead is a cringe-inducing, flat and moldy plot move. On the other hand, most of the characters are believable and acceptable. So, it’s not as bad as I expected, good enough to watch more.

UPDATE: TheBigN and DiGiKerot are picking my bones on IRC for reflexive panning the 3-per-disc layout. The show was never sold as singles, only as a set. Therefore, only the price of the whole box matters (minus the small effort required to reload more discs).

UPDATE A 30s LATER: Now Omo too?! I don’t know if this is a case of great minds thinking alike or what.

Marimite in Lucky Star

Wednesday, August 27th, 2008

The cameo in Lucky Star obviously helped Marimite to grab the eye time. But the funny part is, what Lucky Star represents is essentially absent from Marimite’s action; it forms the unseen background. Konata becomes a fan of the concept commonly associated with the show, but not the show itself!

Moreover, everyone else is on the same wavelength with her. They know at once what is being signified. Thus a curious inversion of occurs: the action forms a background for things fans actually watch (well, Japanese girls do; I do not mean what old dirty weaboos watch).

In interests of compare and contrast, I think the tea in ep.1 was quite representative of both aestetic of action in Marimite, have a look:

I saw a few contrast triptychs recently (do they have a name?), the best of them was probably this:

What I watched: Spice and Wolf
What I expected: Horo’s boobs
What I got: Alan Greenspan

My only gripe with that is, I would have used Milton Friedman (perhaps the creator wanted to send a message of the government regulation, as seen in the anime). Unfortunately, no link. What I do have a link for, is not quite there, because it cheats with text. Still:

What I watched: Manabi Straight
What I expected: Chubbiest Lolis Ever
What I got: Kaiser, Oberstein,

Marimite is not very easy to do this way (but try it, I’ll link), but here’s a rough pass:

QUICK UPDATE: Mike found spelling errors, but no picture.

UPDATE: J.P. wrote that triptychs are tagged with “what_i_watched_what_i_expected_what_i_got” at Danbooru. There’s no specific name.

UPDATE 2008/12/02: Guncannon pointed out a spelling error in the image. Thanks, fixed now.

Marimite 04-07

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

It’s not entirely smooth sailing, but what bloggers said was true: it’s about girls being friends (and enemies, but it’s not very intense).

My biggest gripe is the weird art, which sometimes abates, sometimes comes in full force. Those eyes, they’re just bad.

I deal with the issue by ignoring the visuals and seeing stick figures in my mind’s eye. Dialog drives the show. Marimite is not heavy on meaningful body language and subtle facial expressions. Surprising, really.

UPDATE: The 4th season looks like a significant improvement, despite keeping the side-pointing eyelashes:

In fact, DEEN offers really kickass reimaginings of the original design:

Not sure how true to the anime these are, and what season this is supposed to be. But they are gorgeous.

QUICKIE: Owen asked on IRC: “did you draw those yourself in Linux’s equivalent of MS Paint”? This is so cold. But as a matter of fact, yes, it’s my first digital drawing…

Marimite and Shingu

Thursday, October 9th, 2008

Over the course of the last two months, I coaxed myself through 7 complete episodes and 10 minutes into ep.08 of Marimite. I even started thinking about completing it, when three days ago I accidentially thought: “School government in Shingu was so much more fun”, and it was the drop which overflowed the cup of my determination. I quit this horrible, bleak, dreary excuse for an anime, and was so happy to unwind watching Shingu that I went through 16 episodes in 3 days. Forgot to blog even.

Isn’t it past time for you to grow up?

To be fair, Marimite is not bad per se. As mentioned previously, the idea is that girls are being friends in it. Unfortunately, the relationships are set up to pump angst for no good reason, and it’s pretty much the defining feature of the show. When Shipon were angsty in Stellvia, she had a good reason: the fate of the whole world depended on her performance. Yumi’s tears were completely self-induced and hollow.

The show may be full of valuable life lessons for little girls, but its entertainment value for me is negative. I’m glad it works for others, at least.


お姉様がた: you can use 方 the same way as 達.
へんじ: “response”, different from こたえ/answer… somehow
そうたい(する): leave early
いらいら(する): be irritated
宿題を上げよ: [I] assign homework [to you]
けち: cheapskate (?)
温室【おんしつ】: hothouse/greenhouse

You can come over to play with my daughter any time.

In contrast, Shingu is plain fun. The more I rewatch it, the more I like it. Back when SDB introduced me to it, I was rather sceptical. I mean, all the visual imperfections and stuff… But I think seeing Gurren-Lagann helped me here. Shingu‘s scope is actually about the same, its biggest comparative downside being the screwed-up story of Muryo. Also, there was not as much growth in Shingu; lonely Nayuta does the job that Simon shares with Rossieu But if Gurren-Lagann is one of the four greatest series ever, surely the Tatsuo Sato’s masterpiece deserves to be categorized as simply great.

Thank you for the small word of epic encouragement.

BTW, just to illustrate the above, think how Shingu and Gurren-Lagann handle the times when a hero needs a good shake-up. Asogi and Muryo did not use a good punch in the face, like Kamina and Simon did. I actually liked the Shingu’s way more than the TTGL method.


屋上【おくじょう】: [on] the roof
運動会 vs. たいくさい (elementary school vs. high school)
お見送り: walking home, also parting, farewells
らせん: they all love spiral: Naruto, Shingu (Kyoichi’s), and Gurren-Lagann
みっかが すぎた: three days passed.

I’m pretty sure I’m going to continue watching and enjoying the remainder of the show, blogging be damned. I need to rest from Marimite some more.

UPDATE: Steven says that doesn’t feel much sympathy. But it’s ok. And certainly, Harumi Mineo was absolutely amazing, Feena class, out of this world great character.

IN E-MAIL from J. Greely regarding へんじ:

The general rule when two words have basically identical meanings, is that the one based on on-readings is more formal, because all of the Chinese-derived words were historically used by the upper classes.

Also, I grepped through the Tanaka Corpus, and in most cases, henji referred to a reply, and kotae to a solution, with some overlap. Most of the henji examples were more formal, although there were several expressions that used o-kotae. Not a definitive answer, but suggestive.

I suppose it goes well with people using -gata for -tachi.

Marimite ends

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008

Since Netflix was already primed (in fact, I saved ISOs for later), I finished Marimite despite it being pretty clear not to be a show for me. I did skip quite a bit though.

Overall, it was a bad experience. The art was nasty throughout; while not a deciding factor, it was an additional annoyance. The music was equally nasty. The main mentor/mentee pair got their act together by the end, but only just. The show dips into yuri heavily in ep.10 (with secondary characters, fortunately). The oppressive feel is often similar to that of Kiminozo. The creators decided to let go of it for the ending, but it was not enough to turn the whole series around.

Liked: No
Rewatch: God, no.

Jonathan Tappan on Marimite

Tuesday, November 11th, 2008

Well, he said it:

Maria Watches Over Us strikes me as social satire. We have here a story about privileged young ladies who spend their time worrying themselves sick over problems that could not be more inconsequential. Furthermore they all act sort of gay. []

So true. Although, as for the lesbian part, it varied quite a lot in intensity from a pair to pair, with the main duo being mercifuly left in peace. Jonathan decided to paint (or smear) them all with the same brush.

INSIGNIFICANT UPDATE: Jonathan writes that “none of the characters seem interested in boys”, and that Sachiko treats Suguru “coldly”. Contrary to him, my impression was that Sachiko loved Suguru despite him being an undeserving jerk who abused her and her feelings. There was some explicit dialogue about it at the end of ep.2 or about that. The anime never returns to this important topic after the conclusion of the mini-arc, despite Sachiko being the second most important character. Maybe the pressure from the yuri fans, who were in denial…

Marimite LA

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

Steven Says that making a live action of Marimite “is the stupidest idea since the live action version of Negima.” Having seen the Marimite S1 and Nodame LA – which demonstrates what a great dorama is – I respectfuly disagree. Marimite S1 was a dull affair that was overdue for a remake. It does not rely on anime-specific imagery like Gurren-Lagann. Thus, a competently done adaptation would certainly improve on it.