Remember the third Anime no Chikara project last season that turned out to be a little bit of a surprise hit? Well, the first two volumes of DVD/BD releases have been available for some time now, and included with the first one is an anime PV of Hikasa Youko’s cover of Morning Musume’s 1999 hit song “LOVE Machine”. For those with a 3DTV, the Blu-ray release also included a 3D version of this little bonus, which is a part of the character cover songs included in each volume. The theme for the character songs in this series is covers of popular songs from the 1990s simply because the series takes place in 1999. Unfortunately, the later ones don’t feature PVs of the other characters’ songs, but the second volume does include the first of four mini side stories. The first one is titled “Welcome Tsucchii” and is more or less an animated short akin to what you’d expect from a picture drama, and shows Maya with Ami when they were kids and found a legendary snake known as a Tsuchinoko and made it their pet. It’s cute in the sense that we get to see more of Maya’s occult fascination when she was a kid, but doesn’t really add anything to the overall story. I actually prefer the video above with the characters all busting a move near the end of it and Fumiaki freaking out about Junichirou’s corpse’s head falling off. See the full post for some caps of the side story.
「マヤの文明」 (Maya no Bunmei)
Just when we thought it was all over, the writers slip in another huge twist at the very end by reviving the threat of Nostradamus’ Key.
「千の風、美の尋めゆき」 (Sen no Kaze, Bi no Tomeyuki)
“A thousand wind, the search for beauty”
The revelation of exactly who Nostradamus’ Key is didn’t come as any surprise at this point, but it didn’t take away from the epic feeling of the climax to the story either.
「マヤの死」 (Maya no Shi)
OMG! With the suspicions surrounding Mikaze’s true identity and Maya potentially being Nostradamus’ Key all coming to light, the story surprises me with the introduction of black witches and white mages.
「暖炉のあかり」 (Danro no Akari)
“AKARI of fireplace”
As much as this episode was about Akari and giving her the Christmas with Santa Claus that she died waiting for, it tied in nicely to Maya’s own past with her father and how she misunderstood him.
Nakagawa Shoko’s latest single “Flying Humanoid” was released back on August 18th, whereas the music video for it you see above was aired on TV prior to that. The PV itself is a surprisingly pretty good one as far as Japanese music videos go, and I particularly like the use of CG in addition to Shoko and her band changing into samurai outfits near the end. Is it relevant? Not really, but it’s good for variety sake given how animated she is singing this song. The clocks are a nice touch too, since they’re reminiscent of Occult Gakuin’s opening sequence. As for the song itself, it’s grown on me a fair bit in the past two months while watching the series. Fullmetal Alchemist’s fifth ending theme “RAY OF LIGHT” was a nice slow song, but Shoko’s more upbeat music is always a good listen too. While the TV size version of Flying Humanoid is a good cut that got me into song, I must say I really like the full version a lot more. The main reason being, the TV size kind of ends abruptly and always leaves me wanting to hear more. In her live performance a couple of weeks ago on Music Japan (not on the same one as May’n), Shoko performed this shorter version. It featured a longer instrumental outro, but was otherwise a prime example of me hinging on hearing the next verse of the song. See below.
* Music Japan live performance video after the jump.
「雪のあかり」 (Yuki no Akari)
“AKARI of snow”
Seeing as this is a supernatural series and all, I’ve been sort of wondering when a ghost would show up. Well it looks like I don’t have to wonder any longer, as the little girl in the red coat we saw in the preview last time turns out to be just that.
「まんま亜美～ヤ！」 (Manma Ami~ya!)
I was suspicious of the cow last episode but still wasn’t sure what to make of it either way. Well lo and behold, it comes back in full force with hordes of chupacabras in tow to finally give us some occult stuff again.
「マヤの亜美～ゴ」 (Maya no Amiigo)
It may have something to do with trying to catch up on shows at 3am on a weekday morning, but I was completely led astray this episode just like Maya was.