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Fune wo Amu – 09 »« Fune wo Amu – 07

Fune wo Amu – 08

「編む」 (Amu)
“Compile”

I was not expecting a 13 year time skip… I guess you can call that a Great Passage of Time.

Jokes aside, this episode dealt a massive shock in one hand before bringing us back down to the ground with the other. In all my years of anime, I can’t think of a time jump as severe and sudden as this one. Shin Sekai Yori comes to mind, but that ran over the course of the series. Here, it came out of the blue. I always wondered how we would see the end of this dictionary plot when it was mentioned that it would take several years to finish the project, but I didn’t once think we would actually jump so ahead in time to see that completion unfold. I’m glad to be so shocked, but I’m also a little saddened that we won’t get to see Majime and Kaguya in the early days (or weeks, or months, or years) of their relationship, or watch Majime adapt as the new Chief. Those details would have been satisfying to watch, but perhaps we’re in for greater things with the remaining three episodes.

So Majime and Kaguya are happily married. That’s nice… but I sure do hope we get some flashbacks to their time together, or at least have more scenes with them. I’d like to think their relationship still has that spark that it had when she appeared to him underneath the Moon or when they confessed their feelings for one another. Those are some of the best moments of the series, so I hope we haven’t just skimmed over the best parts of their relationship for the sake of the plot. I’m a little annoyed at that, but I’m going to remain hopeful that this is the best direction for the series, and I assume is what happened in the source material.

The main focus of the episode is actually on the new full-time employee, Kishibe Midori (Hikasa Youko), a girl who has come from a sister fashion magazine but was kicked out for her focus on the importance of words. In essence, she feels like she doesn’t fit in with the dictionary department, but she couldn’t be a better candidate. Her giving the exact same definition of “right” as Majime was a little on the nose, but it serves as a fitting comparison and justifies her staying there without having to over-explain it to the audience. I also found it amusing that Majime lacked delicacy in his own words when asking about “young women” to his own wife. For someone who is a master of words and definitions, he’s still not very good at voicing what he’s thinking. Good thing he’s not the sort to ask that question for the obviously shady reasons, and Kaguya knows that.

So while there were many sudden developments this week, this is still the same Fune wo Amu we’ve come to expect, which I think is for the better. This sudden jump does have me less confident in the direction of the series and whether it will turn out how I’d like it to, but it’s certainly an interesting way to finish this story. Also, RIP to Tora. The new cat is a nice replacement, but the passing of that familiar pet is another detail I’d like to have seen unfold in present time.

December 3, 2016 at 4:55 am
17 comments »
  • December 3, 2016 at 5:40 amWhy

    What makes you assume there was a 13-year time skip? IIRC all they said was that the dictionary has been in the making for 13 years as of this episode, and the work had been going on for quite some time before Majime got transferred there. I believe the time skip must be much less than 13 years.

    • December 3, 2016 at 11:28 amHave you watched the episode?

      It was blatantly addressed in the episode that 13 years had passed.

      • December 3, 2016 at 12:09 pmWhy

        Unless you have a time mark to the line stating that 13 years had passed specifically since the end of episode 7, I’m going to have to assume that it’s you who hasn’t watched the episode.

      • December 3, 2016 at 2:34 pmDoro

        They said they had been working on the dictionary for 13 years.
        At the end of last epsiode, Nishioka mentioned having had worked there in the dictionary department for five.
        So it is more likely to have been an ~8 year timeskip.

      • December 3, 2016 at 2:43 pmSamu

        @Why: There was a clear statement of 13 years which is why I (and others) assumed that was the length of the timeskip.

        @Doro: Thanks for working out the details! Still a pretty massive jump forward in time.

      • December 3, 2016 at 3:55 pmWhy

        @Samu
        Maybe it’s because I listen to Japanese more than I read subtitles, but I saw no indication that these 13 years had passed from anything other that the start of Daitokai work, which I’m not so sure coincided with Majime’s hiring. (Although it is possible; and even Nishioka working in the dept. for 5 years prior doesn’t necessarily mean that was (all) Daitokai time. The old dept. head and the sensei were talking about having worked on many dictionaries prior to ep 1.).

        I meant no offense to you, BTW, it just seemed like jumping to conclusions to me. The pointed tone of my second comment wasn’t directed at you, it was because of that one uppity poster.

      • December 4, 2016 at 12:52 pmBackground Timeskip Evidence

        If we look closely at the backgrounds in episodes 1 and 8, it looks like something closer to 13 years have passed. The first time Majime comes home in episode 1, the two phone-books by the phone at Souun-sou have “’00″ and “2000″ on their spines, so one would assume that’s the year. Then, in episode 8, when Kishibe is first coming to the Dictionary Editorial Department, she passes a poster on the wall (right below the dept. sign) advertising the 2013 revision of the “Genbu Gakushuu Kokugo Jiten”. So assuming those are both current for the episode, that’s a 13 year timeskip.

        On the other hand, perhaps background evidence should be given a little leeway. The train Majime gets off in episode 1 lists Oshiage as it’s final stop. The Hanzomon line wasn’t extended that far until 2003, which doesn’t match the 2000 phone books shown later in the episode (unless Take-san used out-of-date phone books).

  • December 3, 2016 at 10:22 amDenscafon

    Ya i was not a fan of the time skip myself. I too was very interested to see how Majime and Kaguya’s relationship was going to work out, how the Dictionary Department would handle Nishioka leaving the department and Majime pretty much going solo. To me this is kind of what I expected the ending episode would be honestly where Majime would “hand” the baton to someone else to finish “The Great Passage”. Many shows are about the journey, not the end result, but this seems to have skipped a ton of important parts of the journey…so ya, I really hope there’s a ton of flashbacks as I was hooked by this show after that confession ep.

    • December 3, 2016 at 2:44 pmSamu

      Exactly, there’s just too much good stuff being skimmed over just to reach the ending of The Great Passage. In my head I was prepared to not see the end of the dictionary and focus on the characters in real-time, but clearly the series is going in another direction.

      • December 4, 2016 at 1:02 amDenscafon

        Yup. Which is even more strange when the show/dictionary is called “the great passage”… you would think all this development that was skipped would be the main plot of the show… Let’s just hope this new direction will pay out in the end like Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu did

  • December 3, 2016 at 3:14 pmPyon

    That caught me off guard! Really didn’t expect this time skip, and whether it is 8 years or 13 years ahead since last episode, it is way too huge. Actually, I think it was the very first episode of Fune wo Amu I didn’t enjoy quite well.

    As Denscafon mentioned, I thought things will get intense right on – we will see how relationship between Kaguya and Majime develops, how the Dictionary Department handles without Nishioka, how Majime starts gaining confidence to lead the project – all good things were supposed to come right now, and instead we got time skip and new character – I don’t mind Kishibe, I actually liked her a lot since her first appearance, she is cute, kinda lost in her life like Hajime and overall enjoyable to watch. But the problem is, it just doesn’t feel right, at all.

    All I hope is we’re gonna get to some flashbacks now, since I can’t imagine going the remaining three episodes in current timeline, ignoring what happened in between.

    PS: keep up with the good work Samu, my lack of time made me impossible to comment on every episode on this and other series I follow, but reading your and other authors posts here on RandomC makes me enjoy this fall even more.

    • December 3, 2016 at 4:16 pmSamu

      It was an odd episode of Fune wo Amu for sure. Thanks for the comment, the more the merrier! I always enjoy reading discussions in the shows I’m covering. :)

  • December 4, 2016 at 3:30 amSv

    From this ep’s time skip, the intro of a new character, and the short info clips they sprinkle in every episode, it’s clear that the anime’s focus is on the dictionary and not Majime and Kaguya like it was in the movie. This change is unfortunate, I think.

    If I were the director I would’ve used last ep’s time on Majime and Kaguya to at least carry the story to the point of their wedding….instead of doing a double ep (6-7) on Nishioka. Knowing more about him was nice, but it’s less crucial compared to the chunk of story we lost IMHO.

  • December 4, 2016 at 2:17 pmtombeet

    As this sudden timeskip indicates, I don’t think we will have any flashback of Majime-Kaguya together. There will be a brief mention but the way I see it, Fune wo Amu is always a story about the present, so new employee and the completion of that Great Passage dictionary are going to be the main focus. Kaguga will always be a supportive wife character’s stock… But that time skip actually makes me feel the weight of all their effort in order to complete that dictionary.

    It’s still nice to see the gang gets together and has fun.

  • December 6, 2016 at 5:12 pmLunascha

    At first, I thought I had watched the wrong episode or skippied one or skmethjng because the jump is too much for me.. at first I thought they all looked a bit older and then she mentioned her husband so then I realized.. I sort of missed the in betweens but now I feel like we are closer to finding out the ending

  • December 6, 2016 at 5:32 pmneko_in_blue

    Such a horrible animation on an important episode. Kaguya was so beautiful, does people really lose all their beauty after 13 years? She was 20-ish when they met, right? She is not even fourty yet and she looked older than anyone there. I was very disappointed with the animation and the time skip of the series, I hope things improve from now on.

    • December 6, 2016 at 6:16 pmSamu

      I wouldn’t describe the animation as bad. In fact, I’d say Fune wo Amu has some of the most impressive sakuga this season. It’s willing to go off-model and experiment with different visual styles. Some find that annoying, but I put it as one of the creative highlights of the show.