Bakuman. – 14
「バトルと模写」 (Batoru to Mosha)
“Battle and Reproduction”
From what I can gather, it looks like Bakuman started moving toward a two chapter per episode pace rather than one to one and a half. What does that mean? An even better Bakuman that manages to keep your damn attention. With a combination of much needed drama and some real “friend” building moments, this week’s episode stands out as one of the better ones.
After last episode’s big new goal of trying to writing the best mainstream manga ever, I’m surprised with the lengths that our dynamic duo go to just to achieve their goal. While I’ve always thought of Takagi as the more level-headed one, his logic sometimes baffles me. Unlike Mashiro who decides to reinforce his art style by learning from his favorite mangas (100 scenes from 10 mangas), Takagi decides to take it to the next level and wants to “experience” a battle. I don’t know what gave him the nerve to ask Kaya to beat him up, but I’d never want to get hit by a punch like this. It makes sense that to write well on a topic, it’s good to have experience – but I don’t think Takagi is going about it the correct way. “Fighting is scary” right Takagi? With Kaya constantly around our duo, I’m glad that she prods Mashiro about his relationship with Azuki. After nearly dying trying to send his first text message to her, it looks like he’s been getting a little more confident about what he’s doing. To the point where he openly text messages Azuki in front of Takagi and Kaya! To me, it feels like Kaya is the hand slowly pushing Mashiro and Azuki closer together. Whether it be because she cares a lot for her best friend or just because she tries to get her opinions out, I always get a smile on my face when she shows up. If only J.C. staff would stop changing her bust size every single episode.
While I’ve been expressing my feelings about Nizuma recently, I think I should make a formal retraction. But before that, I don’t like Nizuma’s editor. His name escapes me at the moment but boy was I happy when he got knocked off the high chair he was sitting in. After being all smiles since Nizuma became serialized, it was great to see his world fall apart as Nizuma refused to write material for what he was serialized for. That look of despair he had as he realizes that he has no control over Nizuma made my evil side smile. As Nizuma’s editor was freaking out with Nizuma’s lack of responsibility, Hattori was having his own field day with our dynamic duo. Not only was he totally against our duo trying to make mainstream manga, but I don’t think I’ve seen him raise his voice toward anyone before.
As the tension keeps building between the editors and their writers, I never expected Nizuma to be the one who would calm everyone down. After honestly complimenting our duo about their work on Money and Intelligence, going as far as saying he was their fan, he extends his heart and asks for them to become his friend. I was totally flabbergasted. Not only did it suddenly feel like he was a very nice person but as I re-watched the episode while writing this post, it was almost like this holy light was shining on him every time he showed up. Somehow in the span of five minutes, I felt myself strongly grow attached to his character.
This being a shounen anime, I was glad that the episode ended on a high note. After watching Nizuma create a full blown name in less than half an hour, I was pretty surprised with everyone’s reaction to it. Hattori’s ultimatum being the one I was most surprised with. Not only did I get chills running down my back as the new ending song starting playing, but Hattori’s ultimatum to create something amazing in six months sounds like just to thing to finally make our duo create something that can win it all!