Here we go again, Anime no Chikara. Previous attempts at fancy timeslots with ambitious goals have been varied. Noitamina is a huge success (although latest figures haven’t been good). Noise, the timeslot that ran Michiko to Hatchin, Ristorante Paradiso and Aoi Hana, was a failure, dying after the third series. Anime no Chikara is now on its third series, with the previous two not being successful. Occult Academy does look like a step in the right direction though. It has an intelligence that Senko no Night Raid lacked and achieved what it set out to do, unlike Sora no Woto. There’s still plenty of space to collapse horribly but as far as first episodes go, it’s hard to ask for better than this.
The shows popularity hinges on this pretty little lady here. Maya is Ms.Walking-Fanservice with that one-piece, figure hugging, zettai ryouki outfit of hers. Well, she’s more than walking fanservice obviously. Easily perturbed while remaining aloof. A clutz while remaining dignified. There’s an air of a princess around her in the stuck up, ‘I’m always right’ way while keeping from being overbearing. She crosses her legs in the most eye-catching way I’ve ever seen any anime character achieve without the show ever pointing out that what they are doing is fanservice.
That’s one thing I liked about the show. Take the above scene. Crazy zombie girl does one of those classic ‘glasses, glasses’ scenes that feels rather silly, only for said glasses to block Porco Rosso’s devastating dowser rod’s attack. Now most anime would then proceed to have a straight guy point out the humour here, in case the audience is too dumb to see it. Because that’s how Japanese humour works. Here though, there’s nobody pointing out what’s meant to be funny. No stupid narrator directing your attention to the defensive properties of the glasses. A lot of what’s done doesn’t need to be said, mainly because Maya has such a great range of facial expressions that everything that needs to be said is portrayed perfectly anyway.
I think it’s the deep-set brow that does it. I’m so used to the generic massive eyes that anime characters typically have that getting Maya and her deep-set pair are quite the change. The character designer who came up with her deserves a medal for this performace. Although he does need to come up with some other outfits for her. As much as I love her one-piece, figure hugging, zettai ryouki outfit, when she’s wearing the exact same dress as a kid then you need to have something more.
And finally, the shadow. I mean look at it. They even included the knobbly bit at the end. I can only hope to achieve the level of detail in my blog posts that was put into that penis shadow. Because yup, I plan to blog this show this season. And only this, need to take a bit of a breather before the epic Autumn Season.