「転送乙女」 (Tensou Otome)
I was secretly hoping there wouldn’t be anything in this gender reversal Sengoku period anime to grab my immediate attention so that I could avoid adding another new title to the thirty or so I’m planning to follow already, but my interest in this war-filled era of Japanese history and the female seiyuu involved got the best of me. Oh woe is me. Quite honestly, I was expecting this to be more nonsensical than it turned out to be, starting with our middle school heroine, Hide Yoshino (Hidaka Rina). However, her uncanny ability to attract misfortune reminded me of a certain person of a magical index and quickly won me over. What I really like about Yoshino’s character is the fact that she didn’t come off as an incompetent airhead, and instead just someone who has terrible luck. I dare say she was endearing to watch, particularly because Hidaka Rina plays her with a voice very similar to the one she used for Last Order. (Just take out all the third-person descriptive talk.)
What really sold me on the series as a whole was when Yoshino was pulled into an alternate dimension during the Sengoku period where everyone is female. The sight of the crescent helmet and various other samurai armaments in Date-sensei’s office (Hirata Yuka) hinted that she’s the descendent of the “One-Eyed Dragon” Date Masasume, so learning that she was responsible for accidentally transporting Yoshino to this other world put an interesting spin on things. Namely, it built up a plot with someone from her world that she can look for in order to find a way back. The twist of course is that Date-sensei will likely be Date Masamune of this world, meaning she won’t be on the same side as Toyotomi Hideyoshi, whom Hide Yoshino has effectively become to serve Oda Nobunaga (Toyoguchi Megumi) and Akechi Mitsuhide (Kitamura Eri) in their quest to collect the legendary Crimson Armor and unify all of Japan. Not exactly the most interesting development for those who don’t care about this period in Japanese history, but more than enough for me considering that I wasn’t expecting much from the plot to begin with.
Character-wise, I’ll be the first to admit that it was weird seeing Oda Nobunaga portrayed so benevolently by Toyoguchi Megumi, even though she uses her meaner Chifuyu-like voice in this role. What made me more okay with it was the comedic aspect that followed suit, and the fact that Hideyoshi goes down in history as one of Nobunaga’s most distinguished generals. The latter in particular is what made it easier to accept how quickly Nobunaga opened up to having Hideyoshi around, even with all the blushing out of concern. Thus far, there’s been a fairly good balance between the lighthearted and serious story elements that have come together much better than I anticipated, hence why I’m quite keen on seeing where this series goes. Yoshino has her history textbook with her too, so I’m curious if she’ll read about the Incident at Honnou-ji where Mitsuhide ultimately assassinated Nobunaga after betraying him. I will be really impressed if this series touches upon that.
For the time being, I’m already enjoying the quirky dynamic between the characters, given that Mitsuhide is the spitting image of Yoshino’s friend “Akerin”, and Tokugawa Ieyasu will soon be revealed to be the spitting image of “Tokunyan” (Akesaka Satomi). Then there’s the talking dog Shiro, who actually provided a decent cliffhanger of sorts. Despite my personal enjoyment, I still wouldn’t really recommend this series unless you have some interest in the Sengoku period, as that part of the premise is essentially what’s keeping my interest hooked. Well that, and pretty good opening and ending themes care of four cast members, including Ise Mariya who will be voicing Uesugi Kenshin (left in pic). If it means anything, I’m more inclined to follow this than Ore-tachi ni Tsubasa wa Nai after watching both their first episodes, which is the reverse of what I expressed in the Spring 2011 Preview.
Previews with the real seiyuus? Now that’s something different. In case anyone’s unsure, Hirata Yuka is on the left and Hidaka Rina is on the right.