「ミコ, ダンピツセンゲン」 (Miko, Danpitsu Sengen)
“Miko Quits Writing”
Who would’ve thought that this anime would have the episode title act as part of a mid-episode gag?
This episode was effective in displaying the show’s duality in its definition of evil; the student council’s efforts to thwart the anime club, and the predatory nature of anime production. Animegataris has been more skewed towards the idealistic “anime fans is the ultimate life-forms” mentality, but they tackle how soul-sucking creating anime can be, As the club tries to spark magic with their own version of the Daicon shorts, they run into the standard problems that many people are finding with anime production.
Miko gets the brunt of the pain as her position as the screenwriter is draining, and her work is retooled and butchered until it’s barely unrecognizable, giving her incentive to perform this episode’s namesake by giving up. At the same time, Erika takes on the role of a sleazy anime producer who aims to encourage the overworked staff to keep working for the sake of getting everything wrapped up. Arisu’s butler Sebas is seen as overworked after having created a full PV for an anime concept Arisu came up with. The voice-over process is tedious in its need to get every inflection down to a T with no corners cut. The strain is real on most of the staff even if the tone is still light-hearted enough to not incorporate other seedier aspects of the industry like underpaid, outsourced workers/animators and such.
On the flip-side, the student council is getting more and more aggressive in their campaign to eliminate the anime club. The goal post is moved so far by the student council that they’ve made it so that it’d be virtually impossible to get accomplished by cutting off other clubs from working with the anime club. They also shifted the location of their anime presentation to the field where they must fill the stands or else face elimination. Tsubaki was absolutely sinister in this episode, and I loved it. She waited until the end of the episode to put up the largest middle finger in the face of the anime club, and laugh straight in their faces as she gets closer and closer to killing the anime club. The way her eyes shifted into a deep crimson and her grin widened with the elation of ending the anime club was a treat that was hard not to revel in.
There were also hints at what the series tried going for around the beginning as Minoa stumbles across the storyboards for the anime she dreamt about enjoying as a kid. However, Kouki is giving a very suspicious glare her way as she finds the empty room containing the art from her dream anime. The cat’s warnings against opening up the contents from the old anime club could point towards the possibility of the old anime club’s work becoming the Pandora’s box that could cause a heap of supernatural-flavored trouble for the club. Where it goes from here, and whether the club will be disbanded for good are anyone’s guess at this point.
The day I chose to watch this anime and catch up to the latest episode it ended on a cliffhanger.
“Miko gets the brunt of the pain as her position as the screenwriter is draining, and her work is retooled and butchered until it’s barely unrecognizable, giving her incentive to perform this episode’s namesake by giving up.”
And I’m certain this happens A LOT in the industry whether it’s original work or adaptations; editors, publishers, production studios, even animators and whatnot constantly trying to put in their own ideas and things getting changed to where it’s barely recognizable to what it is / used to be.
In terms of the episode itself, I have a feeling that Tsubaki is being brainwashed or something; maybe an evil cat or a dog? lol I mean, the way things ended with her previously seemed to suggest that she more or less accepted things for how they were, and even her fellow council members were stunned at how far she was taking things, even apologizing to the Anime Club for it.
Just the appearance of her eyes seems to suggest it…
…as you can see that, now, she lacks any sort of light in her eyes and instead has that “blank” look, like she’s not all there.
It does feel like Tsubaki is way off, especially since she was content about the club being somewhat around after Kaikai’s speech. The vacant look and the out-of-character cackling could be the work of whatever magic they were trying to suppress.
or.. Konami vs Kojima
That feeling when we’ll never see a complete version of Mission 51 T_T
i am rather surprised that no one talks about yuirin’s megumin imitation. well its no surprise though… it’s rie takahashi. i hope she will be doing an emilia imitation ahhahaha. just noticed that inori minase is also in this anime. will they do a rem-emilia voice?
anyway, its about time that they finally focused on the mysteries of the anime club and that mysterious “sort of mind controlling” beret too. looking at it, if it weren’t for the “strong” wind that blows off the beret in minoa’s hand in episode 1, minoa could be one or the main antagonist of this anime. getting excited for the next set of episodes. this is slated for 12 or 13 eps right? thank god we still have 5 or 6 eps to go.
There are so many weird meta things on the periphery of this show that I’m wondering if it’s just going to go completely Samurai Flamenco at some point.
The shaky ground the series has makes me feel like it would be prone to having a weird Samurai Flamenco tonal shift along the way, and switch genres right away. The anime club antics were just a distraction before they brought out their own equivalent of the Axe Ape.
I was hopeful with the last few episodes, but it looks like we’re getting back to the “foreboding reason” the Student Council is run by a bitch and how, in the end, she’ll actually not be the bad guy and all that bull. Shame, cause the split focus is the show’s biggest weakness.
IMHO They really should’ve ditched the half-baked “something wicked this way comes” vibes and just been a fun/zany show, cause the “drama” from the Student Council and Neko-senpai is so heavy-handed I just can’t call it anything but awful. It’s going to take one whopper of a reason/reveal to bring me around, like maybe the President was taken out and that’s an impostor, but still the question of “why” remains, and there just hasn’t been enough build up to the apocalypse for me to care.
Whereas some shows do well with tonal shifts, Animegataris has been very spotty in whether it wants to be Genshiken for the contemporary otaku or a supernatural mystery on a hidden conspiracy, and they don’t mesh well. Neko-senpai has felt pointless since the beginning, and the build-up to the mystery hasn’t had enough attention to give me incentive to feel any kind of way about the student council’s campaign to shut down the anime club.
You know considering Miko’s struggle, I also tend to wonder about all my posts/replies on this community. How many of you pick apart my views till it won’t hold up? But this struggle part of growing in the industry.
To me, there is a sense of guilt that comes with tearing apart anime because even at their worst, it was still someone’s labor, pain, and time that we pick at. That can resonate too with the contributions of bloggers, commentators, and other fans because everyone’s input is valuable, but at the same time not all of it is constructive because it’s more cathartic to destroy than create.
The joy that people get from trying to correct someone/something to fit their mold often comes with harsh comments, and it can be hard to throw your hat in the ring without scrutiny or the paranoia of inciting a mob. Of course, that’s on a much larger scale than Miko having her efforts revised and dismantled constantly until it resembles very little of her own voice, but it does remind me of things I’ve experienced.
Putting out my POV when I wrote for the college newspaper was painful because most of the feedback I got was “use a simpler word for this, you know who reads this, right?” Yeah, it’s college students; they should’ve learned some new words in highschool, and if they’re spending a fortune on university, I might as well help show them the way.
But I definitely understand the challenge of trying to avoid criticism or scrutiny on impact if you have an idea you want to put out there or suggest, especially in the anime community where the going can be rough if you have different tastes.
omg Always Sunny reference
I always like to pepper my posts with references to things I enjoy. The “Miko Quits Writing” title acting as a gag in the middle of the episode reminded me of how funny the titles in Always Sunny got when the cold opening sets them up as a punchline. “The Gang Runs for Office” is one of my favorite examples of this.