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Seiren – 06

「宮前透 第2章 タイセン」 (Miyamae Tooru dai 2-shou – Taisen)
“Miyamae Tooru Chapter 2 – Versus”

Get OHKO’d.

First of all, a little of RL intrustion: I apologize for the lateness of this post. I hurt my knee while on vacation skiing last week, and between the inability to walk and the pain, I just couldn’t bring myself to blog as quickly as I woulda liked. I’ll try to stay on top of it, but if posts are late for the next few weeks, that’s why. Also, if I’m not as excited as usual, ditto. At least until the blasted swelling goes down. It suuucks!

Now, onto the episode.

First of all—and I know I’m repeating myself—but what the heck is with this show and its weird games? The bus driver one was weird enough (don’t we usually have to pay people to do that job?), and then there was the milk princess thing, and now the deer are mating? Honestly, I think they’re leaning too much on whimsy with these weird add-ons, when a Gundam expy like GusGal works much better without yanking me out of immersion. Then again, YMMV (trope!).

The conflict with episode primarily centered around Hikari helping her boss’s kid, and her warning to Shouichi. The episode continued the problem where characters other’n Shouichi don’t really feel like the characters for the previous arc, which remains jarring. Hikari is the biggest casualty, since we never heard hide nor hair that she played video games enough to be a serious GusGal competitor to Tooru, though Ikuo felt more like the Ikuo of last arc when he took time off gaming to study, so that was appreciated.

More than that, though, Hikari’s warning would have rang more true if they had been showing the danger of Tooru’s playstyle rather than talking about it, as the three boys do at the rabbit cages. It’s like when Hikari brushed off the gossip last arc—they really don’t seem bothered by any deleterious effects Tooru is having on their gaming group. If this is the drama, play it up! Seeds need to be sewn, and then ruthlessly harvested for delicious drama. Seiren seems overly fond of half-measures to me.

My favorite moments were undoubtedly call backs to Amagami SSMakoto referring to her onee-chan (her full name is Kamizaki Makoto), the pump shed—which isn’t a great sign. That means my fondness for Amagami SS is still the primary force that is driving my viewing of Seiren, blogging requirements aside. Though honestly, I probably would have enjoyed it more if my leg wasn’t hurting, and if I hadn’t spent the last several days reading The Name of the Wind, which makes a mid-tier harem anime look like gutter trash in comparison. Art appreciation is all about the context, after all. Something to think about next time your opinion clashes with the majority thought.

My SECOND novel, Freelance Heroics, is available now! (Now in print!) (Also available: Firesign #1 Wage Slave Rebellion.) Sign up for my email list for exclusive content. At stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: The Carcer Principle; Fire, further; Fire; and Starting a story with a bang—and when not to.

Full-length images: 17.

 

Preview

February 12, 2017 at 6:01 pm
22 comments »
  • February 12, 2017 at 7:03 pmguardian enzo

    “This week on Seiren – Tooru asks Shouichi if he wants to mate,then takes his cherry”

    See? All totally true – you don’t need alternative facts to deceive people if you’re clever about it!

    “The Name of the Wind” is pretty great, but Rothfuss makes GRRM look like a cheetah when it comes to writing speed. Even as a writer myself, it pisses me off…

  • February 12, 2017 at 8:15 pmIncest Emblem

    I think you would be surprised by what kind of games people play. Remember Tom Sawyer getting his friends to pay him to paint his fence? You can get people to pay to do a lot of chores if you make it a game rather than a job.

    The bus simulator game: Train Simulator
    http://store.steampowered.com/app/24010/

    GusGal: Mobile Suit Gundam: Federation vs Zeon
    http://gundam.wikia.com/wiki/Mobile_Suit_Gundam:_Federation_vs_Zeon

    MilibBun: Monster Hunter clone with furries. The aesthetics seems rather out there, though.

  • February 12, 2017 at 8:41 pmIncognito

    Tooru: “So, do you want to mate or not?”
    Shouichi: “I-I do!”

    *sarcasm* Yep, this doesn’t remind me of anything at all…*/sarcasm*

    http://randomc.net/image/Seiren/Seiren%20-%2006%20-%20Large%2029.jpg
    (*In “Flamboyant Announcer” voice from Heroes of Newerth*)

    “CHERRY POPPER!”

    Speaking of video games, there is an actual arcade video game in Japan similar to that “bus driver” thing, except instead of a bus, the player controls a commuter train. But the base goal is still similar–arrive on time at the designated stations without mishap. (I probably saw that on a very old (approximately late 90s to early 00s) episode of Japan Video Topics, so I dunno if that game is still around in Japanese arcades today.)

    Hikari falling for that “Good Bad Bug”… That’s what you get for messing with another route– Wait, Tooru and Hikari used to play GusGal/GasoGaru together? (Wha?)

    That being said, while I like how Tooru places importance on being familiar with who she plays with in multiplayer games, I can’t help but feel that Tooru might have that “Git gud” mentality. That is, if Shouichi doesn’t become good enough to keep up with her, he’s deadweight. And I have a feeling that’s gonna be the source of conflict between the two.

    P.S.: Get well soon, Stilts!

    • February 12, 2017 at 10:21 pmguardian enzo

      I’ve actually played that train game – there’s a version of it available online.

  • February 12, 2017 at 8:46 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

    It also seems we got a tiny little peek into Tooru’s mindset given she, without hesitation, exploited a game bug that she clearly knew about in order to win against Hikari and the kid. Over-competitive nature and not wanting to lose no matter what?

  • February 12, 2017 at 8:49 pmAex

    So I guess the conflict will be gaming addiction since Tooru has started to skip school for it. Can’t see how that’ll end well with our wet-noodle MC that still doesn’t have his own brain…

    Please don’t tell me Hikari’s going to be the voice of reason this arc. I’m tired of not caring about her and wish she’d just go away. Give Makoto more sceentime instead. And her own arc if there’s a S2. I think she’s one of the six in the group shot, so I can dream!! XD

    • February 12, 2017 at 9:11 pmIncest Emblem

      The six girls in the promotional arc are Hikari, Tooru, Kyoko (the childhood friend), Makoto (the coward), Ruise (the disciplinary chair), and one of the girls from cram school.

      I am mostly interested in the disciplinary chair and see how they will approach her.

  • February 12, 2017 at 9:17 pmGround zero

    Ikuo’s first crush is Nana Aihara, the younger sister of Kazuku Aihara (The second protagonist in Kimikiss). It’s interesting how Seiren , Amagami and Kimikiss are in the same universe.

    • February 12, 2017 at 9:22 pmAex

      Thank you!! That was driving me nuts since she looked familiar but I couldn’t place her!

      Kimikiss… I liked the manga more cause it was Amagami/Seiren “route” style.

    • February 13, 2017 at 6:26 amVelvet Scarlantina

      Are you serious?

      I know Seiren is a direct continuation to Amagami SS series but KimiKiss? I mean I’ve heard ofnit before but Seiren as a continuation to it? Just… WOW.

      Kamizaki Makoto… Stalker girl from Amagami SS?

      • February 13, 2017 at 7:40 amAex

        Risa’s little sister or cousin, apparently, yeah. Now I really can’t wait for her route!

      • February 13, 2017 at 8:26 pmStilts

        Makoto’s older sister was the stalker girl, Kamizaki Risa.

  • February 13, 2017 at 4:46 amDave

    The episode continued the problem where characters other’n Shouichi don’t really feel like the characters for the previous arc, which remains jarring.

    I wonder how much of that is a side effect of the reality that in the dating sim games this is inspired by you generally have to behave differently to get each girl. Which then results in every other girl behaving differently towards you because you’re not doing the things they like.

    • February 13, 2017 at 7:45 amAex

      I think that’s the excuse they’ll use for the personality changes, but it honestly doesn’t cover mood-swings this big. I’ll just fool myself by remembering how hilariously little we actually knew about Hikari by the time her arc finished, plus it’s true that she was a little self-absorbed.

    • February 13, 2017 at 12:40 pmWhatsapp

      Tooru’s arc starts earlier in the timeline.

    • February 13, 2017 at 8:31 pmStilts

      @Dave

      That holds true for Shouichi. As others have noted, Junichi changed a lot between arcs too. (I liked that he started with a central element, but that’s another issue.) It doesn’t hold true for the other characters, though. Kaoru was always Kaoru, Haruka was always Haruka, Ai was always Ai. Some event changed and they didn’t get with Junichi sometimes, but they were always identifiably themselves. That’s less the case here.

      Personally, I think it’s an outgrowth of them not being as well established of characters. The writers of a visual novel have to spend a LOT of time with each character, and if they’re not shite—which the Amagami SS ones largely weren’t—the characters become well defined enough that you know who they are. I doubt that’s the case for most of these characters, so the writers are more tempted to use them to fill different roles in different arcs. They’re already paying the seiyuu, after all.

    • February 14, 2017 at 2:32 pmJuan

      Honestly that shouldn’t affect it too much. I’ve played a bunch of VN type games where the general personalities of the characters will hold true through out all the arcs. Of course there will be slight changes and the personalities of the “main girl” in the arc may be a little different from what you might see in other arcs but that can simply boil down to getting to know the person better or them letting their guard down.

      The problem here in Seiren is that the characters seem like completely different people.

  • February 13, 2017 at 6:35 amVelvet Scarlantina

    http://randomc.net/image/Seiren/Seiren%20-%2006%20-%20Large%2004.jpg
    I submit to your greatness hime-sama though I will never renounce Hitagi as my

    http://randomc.net/image/Seiren/Seiren%20-%2006%20-%20Large%2029.jpg
    This scene has plenty of double meanings. For some strange reason, it tried to replicate the importance of oral hygiene but it faltered.

    http://randomc.net/image/Seiren/Seiren%20-%2006%20-%20Large%2003.jpg
    Now I’m fine with the fetish fest in Seiren but it’s getting weirder by the week. Come on… Milk!? I want ramen!

    http://randomc.net/image/Seiren/Seiren%20-%2006%20-%20Large%2033.jpg
    Bow this throw back is something that I like. I took a quick look back at Amagami SS and thus far, noone was caught during the Haruka Lovely Morishima arc. So which arc was it that Junichi got caught?

    I do like the fact that they subtlety announced that it’s been 10 years since Amagami SS/SS+
    A quick throwback to Haruka arc and Ayatsuji arc, depending on the arc Seriren is in, Junichi either just got married with Haruka OR happily married with Ayatsuji and has little Ayatsuji running around. Am i right?

  • February 13, 2017 at 7:30 amArche

    “The bus driver one was weird enough (don’t we usually have to pay people to do that job?)”

    Sounds like you need to play Densha de Go

  • February 13, 2017 at 7:35 amMediafag

    Is it bad that I see more of myself in Tooru than in Kouichi? I mean, being highly competitive and skipping classes to play videogames was the story of most High School gamers in the 90′s/early 2000′s.

    • February 13, 2017 at 7:44 amMediafag

      And by “Kouichi” I mean “Shouichi”

      FUN FACT: All the protagonists Kimikiss, Amagami, and Seiren share the same “-ichi” name. Kimikiss has Kouichi, Amagami has Junichi, and now Seiren has Shouichi

      • February 13, 2017 at 7:52 amAex

        Which has always made me wonder what “-ichi” means as a suffix since it’s like “-suke” and seems like it can just get thrown on the end of every boy name. I know it’s the number “one” but is that it?

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