It’s interesting to have this episode air alongside Silver Spoon, where people can talk about how much they love animals and part of the reason they love them is because they’re tasty. When you take it from the animal’s point of view, that’s a kinda scary thought. Except while in Silver Spoon it’s part of necessity, in Eccentric Family it’s just because it’s a tradition. A bunch of them don’t even want to do it. I can imagine a bunch of elite nobles sitting around a banquet table talking about how they don’t even like this rare whale meat much anyway, they only eat it because it’s what you do when you’re posh.
If the Friday Fellows aren’t that bothered about eating tanuki, then why don’t the tanuki simply fight back? They can apparently turn into giant mountains and tigers to bite each other in the groin. So why can’t they take on the Friday Fellows? They’re just a bunch of middle to old aged men. Or at the very least try a little diplomacy. I’m sure a sharply worded letter would turn the democracy over to the side of not chowing on tanuki. Asides from Benten that is.
It doesn’t even seem like Benten should be all that powerful, yet she’s got the tanuki cowering in fear and running away, while the tengu are busy acting as her personal bodyguards and shopping bag carriers. Is it all just her aura and charisma that are scaring these people? Sure she can fly and has a few knick knacks lying around, but can she turn into a mountain? I’m sure she could probably convince the tanuki and tengu that she could, which is where her power lies I guess. All they need is to realise it and they can stop living wrapped around the little finger of this one human and stop being below them on the food chain. This ability to dictate events and strike fear into everyone is why Benten is such a great villain, but it also gets me a little irritated with the rest of the characters’ inability to do something about it.
I would just have the rest of this post be pictures of Benten, but I’d like to clear something up in regards to Eccentric Family’s context of the wider PA Works library. Going by the animation studio is a solid step towards understanding how an anime might turn out and how it might progress. This is mostly if the work is original content though. Previous PA Works titles such as Hanasaku Iroha and Tari Tari and original works with largely the same staff working on them. Meanwhile Eccentric Family is based off a novel written by the author of Tatami Galaxy, a very different style of writing to their usual fare.
Similarly, even if we start looking at the staff, the director and series composition are done by ex-Production IG folks who worked under Kenji Kamiyama on Stand Alone Complex, Eden of the East, Moribito and so on. The only previous anime they have worked on under PA Works is that Anime Mirai project about the talking carrot. The visual style is also pretty clearly different, given that they’ve brought in the character designer from Sayonara Zetsubo Sensei instead of the usual Kishida Mel ladies with skin covered in wax look. Once you start going down into individual animators and storyboarders, you do start to see the PA Works backroom team showing up. But with all the key staff having never worked on previous PA Works properties, basing how this show will do or how it connects to the wider PA Works library is not a good idea.
I said all of this in my season preview too. I know I can’t get everyone to read the season previews, but you bloody well should so you stop sounding like uninformed idiots when trying to be knowledgeable.