OP: 「X-encounter」 by 黒崎真音 (Kurosaki Maon)
「SHAMAN*CLAN -約束-」 (SHAMAN*CLAN -Yakusoku-)
The many reoccurring themes that keep popping up in my posts – dolls, scissors and spirits. Yes, this is another show about how people have the abilities to see and vanquish evil spirits from the world. A different spin on it would be that our main character, Tsuchimikado Harutora (Ishikawa Kaito) does not actually have this ability despite being born into a family that should. On the other hand, Tsuchimikado Natsume (Hanazawa Kana) does and when they were young, Natsume and Harutora made a promise that binds Harutora as Natsume’s tsukaima. Fast forward a few years, Harutora is off on summer vacation and bumps into Natsume who has come back from Tokyo to visit. , Their meeting is short, but Harutora clearly states that he cannot see spirits (which means he cannot help fight against them either). The story also introduces Harutora’s friends whom include his crush, Hokuto (Kanemoto Hisako) and his classmate, Ato Touji (Kimura Ryouhei). The episode starts off by showing a slice of Harutora’s life up until this point – it’s rather laidback, average and he doesn’t feel like he’s missing out on much. Unfortunately by the end of it, he’s already captured by Direnji Suzuka (Sakura Ayane) and thus, life as he knows it will never be the same. Bum bum bum~
Let me just get this off my chest – there is a lot of blushing going on in this series. At first it’s actually quite cute when you see teenagers innocently flirting, but man, I’ve never seen a guy blush that much before. Perhaps it’s also the style of art, but I can’t say that I love the rosy cheeks everywhere. Talking to females should not be an uncommon occurrence… only an unexpected kiss should warrant that much blood rushing to your face. Or you know other areas… but let’s not get into that! The show comes off as a harem to me due to the large number of females that seem to pop up in a single episode. Not to say that that’s a bad thing, but I’m hoping that there’s more depth and complexity to the show other than Harutora getting used by different characters. Unlike Unbreakable Machine-Doll, I can’t seem to find anything particularly noteworthy about Harutora that makes me either love or hate him. He’s not exactly a standout protagonist by any means (yet?) but perhaps that will change with time. One thing about Harutora that I find unattractive is how he’s not determined to even prove to himself that he can be a “spirit see-er”. He’s come to accept the fact that he’s not special and therefore life is all that it has to offer. Yet on the other hand, other people like Hokuto believe that he can be different. If you throw in the fact that Harutora likes Hokuto, that’s all the more reason to thrive for something, isn’t it? Instead, he yells at her and she runs off… not smooth and definitely not the guy that I would want in my pants. No offense Houkuto. It’s one thing to have the typical “deeply-misunderstood-troubled-past” man, but it’s another to have someone who’s unwilling to accept help.
Tokyo Ravens has possibly been one of the weaker openings I’ve seen all season. I hate to admit that, especially with the long streak of great shows I’ve been watching. I believe the beginning is meant to set the story up and give the audience a slice of what Harutora’s life is like. Unfortunately that also means that the first half of the episode was a little slow for me and the lack of interest in characters makes it hard to me to relate or care. The second half shows a bit more of what’s happening in Tokyo and outside the world of Harutora. This is what ultimately the story is about but the episode doesn’t exactly suck me in except with the short tease at the end – and that extremely sensual use of a chocolate banana (Arrested Development anybody?). I’ll be waiting to see if the story develops into something more and even the big guy has expressed interest in it. I’m expecting to see some strong character development ahead and a lot context as to what Harutora is getting himself into. If anything, the ED has just jumped to the top of my list of favorite ending songs this season. I love Kyoukai no Kanata’s as well, but I honestly cannot resist this one – it’ll be on repeat for the next little while.
TL;DR – @RCCherrie: First kiss in the first episode?! Yes please! Oh and I like the ED =) surprisingly a lot. Not what I was expecting but still resembles a harem under a facade of spirits and supernatural events…. I’m on the fence.
ED: 「君が笑む夕暮れ」 (Kimi ga Emu Yuugure) by 南條愛乃 (Nanjo Yoshino)