「偽叡山電車」 (Nise Eizan Densha)
“The Fake Eizan Electric Railway”

I’m safe in saying this is the most exciting and hilarious episode ever, right? We’ve got trains that are ramming cars and leaving people in disbelief, Raijin Fans that are used to hilariously overpowered effect, and of course professor Akadama flailing around like the semi-crazy sensei he is. I was afraid that this was going to be the end of the arc when those credits started rolling, but P.A. Works isn’t done yet–there’s one more episode to close this slow-cooking plot once and for all! Conflict after conflict has arisen for the Shimogamo family, where one pops up just as soon as one is thought to be resolved. That chain is soon to end though, as the idiocy of the Eccentric Family will soon prevail…hopefully.

The way that the Shimogamo family gets their way is a treat to watch. Though overpowered and over-the-top, I would not claim that the Shimogamo family pulls off deus ex machina’s, but rather that they do the best they can in the face of panic. The sheer power of their abilities is mainly to reinforce their idiot nature, often to hilarious and beautifully animated effect. I knew it was coming, but when Yasaburou waved that fan to unintended effect, I had a hard time restraining my laughter lest I wake up my floor. It also helps that their powers aren’t an end-all to the plot, as there are antagonists who are steps ahead of them, not allowing themselves to be outwitted by a mere crashing train or a huge hurricane of wind. I know, some of us thought this was going to end with Yajirou saving everyone, but those pesky antagonists can pull out last-minute tricks, especially so close to the end. It all becomes a battle of subtle wits versus powerful idiot dedication, which creates this perfect blend of crazy comedy and overhanging drama that has become the signature of Uchouten Kazoku. While Benten gives us that coy smile indicating manipulation, we have Yashirou scared out of his mind to literally blow his elders away. Even towards the end do we get a ridiculous yet tense scenario where each of the three species in Kyoto–the Tanuki, the Friday Fellows, and Professor Akadama–all under one roof, being separated by only the thinnest of paper walls. It’s a clear setup for the best of both parties to clash together, all for the ultimate fate of one tanuki. I fully expect Soun to at least do something to save his former crush, and professor Akadama to come charging to save the day crazy old guy style.

It’s going to be really hard to say goodbye, but this has been a pleasing series to follow through to the end. Though it started off slow, all the pieces of character development have all started to fall together, where every action being played out has a previous development behind it. It all weaves so nicely together that I have to applaud the screenplay writers for pacing the show so well, all while making sure that we don’t exactly know what’s going to happen next. Last week people lamented about the preview spoiling the treat, but I’m sure not many expected the epic route that Yajirou was to take, much less through the air. I hope you guys are just as excited as I am to see this conclusion, because everyone under one roof is going to be the clash of the season!




  1. Soun, that sonuva bitch. I just want to watch him crash, but unfortunately I think the Shimogamo family might be a little too ‘soft’ to really make him suffer.

    Also, the animation seemed a little different today. Not worse necessarily, but more…cartoony? Particularly the Yajirou train segments, as the animations reminded me of old school Mickey Mouse style cartoons.

  2. Seems like I was right pointing out that Soun is the most human-like character in the show, even Soun himself admits that tanuki are unlike humans/tengu and don’t do the dirty and cruel things he’s been masterminding all this time. 😀

    The most exciting part (besides crashing into the Friday Fellows) is the setup to the free for all battle between humans, tengu and tanuki. Almost Quentin Tarantino-like if it had some dialogue that didn’t make any sense at all before killing each other 😛

  3. I still don’t really understand the concept of “idiot blood”. Nor do I understand why it seems that alcohol seems to cure physical indolence.

    I would really like to learn more about BenTen before the show ends, and see the human form of the second eldest brother.

    1. 1.) It may just be the way it’s translated in the subs. A proper translation may use different words entirely and thus, would mean something very different. It does seem like it, since characters repeat that phrase all the time in this show.

      2.) Yajirou gulped down AN ENTIRE BOTTLE of the thing! THAT would get you tanked much more than a glass.

      1. “aho no chi” really does mean “idiot[‘s] blood”, but I you can translate it mentally as “tradition of being idiots” if you like.

        As to the alcohol, I think the idea was that in the old days Yajirou + dad would go out drinking and he’d turn into a train after getting drunk. Pouring sake down his froggy throat was to get him in the mood of the good old days.

  4. This was one of those episodes that made me go ‘huh, it’s over already?’ because I was having such a good time watching it. Always like it when a show can do that. I laughed my ass off when that train just crashed right into the restaurant. Ah, there’s no kill like overkill.

    With the asshat brothers out of the way, only Soun and the Friday Fellows remain, and all are next to each other now (which I guess is probably set up by Benten). Dammit, can’t wait for next week. Now this is how you build a climax!

    This show just has so many elements done right where so many other shows fail; the pacing is perfect, the blend between comedy and drama is remarkably well done, the characters are really likeable (and the villains hateable) and the more ‘out there’ things that happen still feel appropriate for the context. Combine that with correct use of the OST and beautiful backgrounds and you have a winner. Man, I’ll miss this show.

  5. Last episode next week and there’s still so many things to show. I want to know more about Benten and her motives, and about the accident that caused Akadama sensei to loose his ability to fly (which might be related to Benten’s motives).

    But then again, maybe it’s best to keep the mystery, which gives Uchouten Kazoku part its charm.

  6. Not to put a damper, but I was seriously bummed by the episode. We’ve been getting a real treat with character reveals and family interaction with Uchouten all season, and here I was hoping that Yajirou would should some real growth, have a nice heart to heart chat, and finally sum up the motivation to face his laziness for his family and transform out of the well. The trick to getting him out the whole time was to get him drunk, seriously?? Also I thought when a tanuki is drunk or not in a state of peaceful mind they can’t maintain transformation, let alone maintain the train after years of forgetting how to transform entirely *raises eyebrows*. I was really looking forward to Yajirou saving the day for his family despite his laziness, but the way they threw it all together was way too forced – even though the rest of the show is so natural and raw in its characters’ actions. Hoping this ends on a higher note…

    Enoshima Dance

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