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Shigofumi – 03 »« Snapshots: Shigofumi

Shigofumi – 02

OP Sequence

Shigofumi   OP   01 Shigofumi   OP   02 Shigofumi   OP   03
Shigofumi   OP   04 Shigofumi   OP   05 Shigofumi   OP   06

OP: 「コトダマ」 (Kotodama)by ALI PROJECT
Watch the OP! Mirror 1, Mirror 2

Shigofumi   02   01 Shigofumi   02   02 Shigofumi   02   03
Shigofumi   02   04 Shigofumi   02   05 Shigofumi   02   06
Shigofumi   02   07 Shigofumi   02   08 Shigofumi   02   09
Shigofumi   02   10 Shigofumi   02   11 Shigofumi   02   12
Shigofumi   02   13 Shigofumi   02   14 Shigofumi   02   15
Shigofumi   02   16 Shigofumi   02   17 Shigofumi   02   18
Shigofumi   02   19 Shigofumi   02   20 Shigofumi   02   21
Shigofumi   02   22 Shigofumi   02   23 Shigofumi   02   24
Shigofumi   02   25 Shigofumi   02   26 Shigofumi   02   27
Shigofumi   02   28 Shigofumi   02   29 Shigofumi   02   30
Shigofumi   02   31 Shigofumi   02   32 Shigofumi   02   33
Shigofumi   02   34 Shigofumi   02   35 Shigofumi   02   36

Summary:

After Asuna stabbed Shouta because he knew about her killing her father, she had turned towards Fumika. Kanaka panics because she thinks Asuna isn’t normal, but Fumika explains that Asuna is normal because she has things that she cherishes and things that get in her way. And despite Asuna having murdered people, Fumika feels that she’s not the judge here. Fumika just has something she wants to confirm, and so she asks if Shouta was Asuna’s lover or if Asuna had lovers at all. After Asuna reveals that there were a lot of men, Fumika utters the number 0913 to Kanaka and then disappears right as Asuna tries to stab her. Fumika reappears with Kanaka on the rooftop where Shouta built his rocket, and because Kanaka comments on how she didn’t think Shigofumi could be used for that kind of thing, Fumika affirms that it was nevertheless still a Shigofumi. Fumika then uses the number 0609 to change Kanaka into a necklace that gives her wings and the power to fly. As they soar up to the sky, Kanaka wonders why Asuna killed her father, and though Fumika feels that this is not something related to their job, she knows there’s more to it. Asuna meanwhile spends a good part of the night remembering everything that’s happened as she digs at the ground with her switchblade so that she can bury Shouta’s body.

Asuna spends the days that follow taking care of her little sister Miku, but her experiences still haunt her. At one point, her classmates had written all over her desk at school, accusing her of being an erotic model. The truth is that she was one. In the same building that Shouta had built his rocket, Asuna’s father had brought in photographers to take nude pictures of her. On the night that she killed her father, Asuna had asked for a day off, but her father turned down the request. What finally turned Asuna against him was his desire to use Miku too. Even now, Asuna feels that what she did protected Miku and their future. Things take a turn for the worse however when the police discover Shouta’s body, and they begin searching for Asuna in connection with it. This forces her to go into hiding, so she disguises herself by cutting her hair and boards a train to make her escape. She feels bad about leaving her sister behind, but she knows that she has no choice. However, on the train, Asuna encounters Fumika and Kanaka again, and it turns out that Fumika has a Shigofumi from Shouta. Asuna doesn’t understand what Fumika says about the Shigofumi being the last remaining feelings of people who have lost everything and thinks instead that it’s a blackmail letter.

Realizing that there are no other people on the train, Asuna decides to try to kill Fumika again, but Fumika uses Kanaka to sweep Asuna off her feet. Fumika then pulls out a gun and points it at Asuna to make her realize what it’d feel like to die and have regrets. Asuna ends up accepting the letter, and after she reads it, she rushes off the train. In the letter, Shouta is the one apologizing for not noticing and considering her feelings, and he thanks her for believing in his rocket. As she runs back to the rooftop where the rocket is, Asuna thinks to herself that she actually hated Shouta because he always talked about his dreams whereas everything about her was a lie. In that building, she had seen nightmares, yet Shouta had always seen the endless sky from the rooftop. The truth is that it wasn’t the rocket she wanted to believe in but rather their future; she felt that their future would open up if the rocket flew. When Asuna arrives at the rooftop, she uncovers the rocket and finds that Shouta wrote her and Miku’s names on it. After adding Shouta’s name on there too, Asuna follows his instructions on how to launch it and starts the countdown timer.

Shortly after the countdown starts though, Asuna is discovered by one of the detectives. He takes a gentle tone towards her and tries to get her to go with him, but a strong wind suddenly blows the blue tarp onto the rocket. Realizing that the tarp will mess up the launch because it’s tied to the rooftop, Asuna rushes forward with her knife out and manages to cut the line before the countdown reaches zero. However, she then gets shot by the detective’s partner because he thought that she was trying to attack the first detective. The rocket launches moments later, and as Asuna thinks about how Shouta went to heaven and how she’ll probably go to hell, she watches it rise up into the sky. In the aftermath, Fumika delivers a Shigofumi to Miku that she describes as having the purest and most beautiful feelings in the world.

ED Sequence

Shigofumi   ED   01 Shigofumi   ED   02 Shigofumi   ED   03

ED: 「Chain」 by Snow*
Watch the ED!: Mirror 1, Mirror 2

I’m not a big fan of ALI PROJECT (never have been, probably never will be), so I didn’t really like the OP. The ED, on the other hand, is a nice ballad, perfect for winding down after a good episode.

It might be a little premature for me to say this, but out of all the new shows I’ve seen so far this winter season, Shigofumi has been my favorite. There’s just something about the way the plot continues to surprise me with themes that are a lot more mature than I was expecting, from multiple instances of death to child pornography. And each death is made all the more meaningful because of the Shigofumi, and they also allowed the show to flow really well between Shouta’s point of view in the first episode to Asuna’s point of view in the second. The ending was incredibly bittersweet too because Asuna redeemed herself and still paid the ultimate price, leaving her sister behind with only a letter of the purest feelings.

At first glance, this show seemed similar to Shinigami no Ballad, but now that I’ve seen two episodes, I find this so much more interesting than that ever was. I’m really enjoying the story, and that may have everything to do with how CODE GEASS’s Ookouchi Ichirou is writing the script. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I generally dislike shows that are episodic, yet, for this first arc at least, Shigofumi is hitting all the right buttons, and I look forward to the next arc.

As a side note, I won’t personally be doing another full writeup for the first episode; Patrik already wrote a good summary of that all the way up until the twist at the very end, which was of course that Asuna killed Shouta to protect the secret that she killed her father.

January 12, 2008 at 10:15 pm
30 comments »
  • January 12, 2008 at 10:25 pmGenestarwind

    Looks good. Wow, I didn’t realize that Ookouchi Ichirou is the script writer. It may turns out to be good and interesting.

  • January 12, 2008 at 11:09 pmWindspirit

  • January 12, 2008 at 11:21 pmMagical Poof

  • January 12, 2008 at 11:35 pmLeviahan DarklyCute

    When this show will get subbed??

  • January 12, 2008 at 11:37 pmlol

  • January 12, 2008 at 11:45 pmAlien

    loli pos laju with gun :D

  • January 13, 2008 at 12:39 amwhitey-chan

    damn, hurry up subs!!!

  • January 13, 2008 at 12:58 amBROOKLYN otaku

    i n LOVE with the costume of the large gat wielding loli!!

  • January 13, 2008 at 1:58 amTotali

    Looks like I was right about someone else loving this show.

  • January 13, 2008 at 2:42 amTensai Otaku

    OMG!!DUHHH!!!
    ” THE OBIVIOUS STUFF!! “

  • January 13, 2008 at 3:51 amJayars

    this ep gave me the chills. I mean,… I’m sure we ALL saw it coming, one way or the other. But it was still quite sad, esp for asuna. Not a feel good show, but definitely one that sends chills up ppls’ spines, followed by waves of warmness.

    I wonder if shigofumi will be only about letters that make their receipients feel guilty, or if we’ll get episodes with letters that are simply meant to give its receipients closure.

    sniff sniff… gonna go watch an episode of gokujou seitokai with lots of Oume Ayumu.

  • January 13, 2008 at 4:23 amDmo

    I don’t know what to call Shouta…pure, forgiving, or stupid (come on, she fek’n shanked you man).
    I’m also surprised that Asuna suddenly developed a conscience because she stabbed Shouta in the chest without showing even a bit of remorse.

    Btw…they’re in high school right?

  • January 13, 2008 at 4:24 amDmo

    got cut off, continuing from last msg…

    What kind of sick pr0n photographer would agree to shoot a girl under 18?

  • January 13, 2008 at 4:28 amAlien

  • January 13, 2008 at 4:36 amDantekottai

    Shigofumi ~Stories of Last Letter~

    Director: Tatsuo Sato (Martian Successor Nadesico, Stellvia)
    Series Composition,Script: Ichiro Okouchi (Code Geass, Planetes, Azumanga Daioh, King Gainer)
    Original Character Design: Kouhaku Kuroboshi (Kino’s Journey, Allison to Lillia)
    Assistant director: Katsushi Sakurabi (Tsukihime, Yomigaeru Sora – RESCUE WINGS -, Asatte no Houko)

    This is a original animation. Light Novel’s one is a link of media franchise.

  • January 13, 2008 at 6:37 amMisu

    Anyone know what type of gun that Kanaka is packing around? Or if it is even based off a real one?

  • January 13, 2008 at 7:23 amdivine

    I didn’t really know what to expect with Shigofumi either (I basically started watching it because it starred Ueda Kana and Matsuoku Yuki), but I’m glad it turned out a lot more interesting than I expected. The show is somewhat eerie and unsettling, but at the same time, it’s mixed in with surprises and touching moments. In short, a nice roller coaster ride of emotions.

    As always, providing you with high quality YouTube versions of the OP/ED…

    Shigofumi 「シゴフミ ~Stories of Last Letter~」 OP “Kotodama” 「コトダマ」 by ALI PROJECT
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1ZjsAYI8nc

    Shigofumi 「シゴフミ ~Stories of Last Letter~」 ED 「Chain」 by Snow*
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bEooMMGB8lU

    The ending ballad is reminiscent of Chrno Crusade’s ED theme, Sayonara Solitaire by Chiba Saeko. Both are very nice, calming ED songs that you just couldn’t help but listen to every time.

  • January 13, 2008 at 10:51 amsetsuke

    Have to admit not only is the story is good but even the way J.C Staff animate the gun that Fumika is using is also very detail and nice, if only Gunslinger 2nd season is animated by J.C Staff too maybe we wont get to see such low animation in it and the guns will look better.

  • January 13, 2008 at 1:17 pmDaiske

    About when this will be subbed I would expect it within 1-4 days maybe even a week :P It will definitely be picked up though probably by Baka-Wolf/m.3.3.w or Ayako as they seem to like subbing new series :o I wouldn’t expect one of the speed groups like SHS(Shinsen subs) or eclipse as they already got enough shit on there plate :P just check animesuki every other day :o

    Spice and wolf, True Tears, Rosario + Vampire, and H2O already have a couple groups working on them so no worries about thoughs :D

  • January 13, 2008 at 7:38 pmSadmask

    I am going to watch this at thjis instant.

  • January 13, 2008 at 8:26 pmMakall

    Do I see loli with big handgun?

  • January 13, 2008 at 8:56 pmkarasu

    Daisuke: Forgive me for telling you this, but BWS won’t be subbing Shigofumi. Unfortunately something turned up for the translator, and the team that was working on it was coming on and off, and that caused a slight dispute with the timer, so BWS will not be fansubbing Shigofumi. If BWS is doing it, it’ll most likely be very late, or they’ve obtained another staffer.

    OTL forgive us. I’m still watching the show, though, and I do have the opinion that Shigofumi has the most balanced and relatively better production quality for this season.

  • January 13, 2008 at 10:56 pmMatroid

    Shigofumi has a similar, dark and philosophical theme as Jigoku Shoujo. However, after watching the first story, I feel that Shigofumi is too heavy handed. For example, it sets up Asuna as a sex victim even though the whole story can move forward without such provocative element. Asuna’s father is one-dimensionally bad; Shouta is one-dimensionally kind; and Asuna is one-dimensionally victimized. There is at best some trace of formulaic sadness at the end; but the story doesn’t offer much insight into life in the sense that a reasonable viewer probably would not think otherwise about what happened in the story (i.e., Asuna’s father deserves to die, etc.).

  • January 13, 2008 at 11:38 pmTom

    Quite a dark story, although the scene with Asuna lying there dying was a bit unconvincing, there weren’t any visible bullet wounds or bleeding:
    http://randomc.net/image/Shigofumi/Shigofumi%20-%2002%20-%20Large%2035.jpg

  • January 14, 2008 at 12:53 amBROOKLYN otaku

    for “MISU” i’m feeling from the slide on the lovely pistol, and grip placement that that fine piece of hardware is reminiscent of a 45. caliber thunder ranch custom.. VERY FUCKING SWEET!!!!!!!!!!

  • January 14, 2008 at 2:42 amKappy

    hey Omni, the link to patrik’s summary isnt working, displaying a 404 fyi.

  • January 15, 2008 at 1:55 pmSlade

    wondering where that first summary is… ended up watching the raw… damn it’s twisted… did not see it coming, made me wish I didn’t glance the shots of the 2nd ep.

  • January 15, 2008 at 11:30 pmGrimaH

    SUBS FUCKING WHERE

  • January 17, 2008 at 5:38 amShippoyasha

    Well, Omni, I absolutely love Ali Project because of how divisive the opinion gets about them. I wouldn’t have it another way. Another excellent OP by Ali Project. As usual.

  • January 20, 2008 at 6:51 amraimaru2880

    NIce ep. Cant wait for the next one. So there’s like murder stuff involved… cool… kinda reminds me of the whole DeathNote thing.