25 CommentsFirst Impressions / By Scamp /

Otome Yokai Zakuro episode 1

Oh hi there shojo anime. I was wondering when you’d show up this season.

I’d forgotten Otome Yokai Zakuro was a shojo series, the token one of the season. It appears, after Maid-sama, that JC Staff have found themselves a genre they quite enjoy doing. We have all the usual tropes, or in my case, annoyances that most other shojo series have. A particular grievance I had with this episode was the way the music would change to point out what you were supposed to be feeling during the current scene. As if the chibi faces weren’t enough, here’s some music bouncier than the breasts from Highschool of the Dead to point it out to you. But now you’re supposed to take this scene seriously, so let us serenade you to some violin music while the characters all start blushing furiously. Oh, and the sparkles and flowers and other random shit floating around in the background.

Where do they come from? The shojo version of hammerspace is sparklespace. It doesn’t hold many weapons but has plenty of sparkles, flowers and a bubble making machine. They decided to forgoe using the bubble machine in Yokai Zakuro, instead opting for the origami flowers. Usually they accompany a scene that your supposed to be laughing at, along with the bouncy music. I suppose the music could also be called bubbly so that makes up for the lack of bubbles floating across the screen. As for the bishies soldiers, we have the self-confident but easily embarrassed shota, the strong silent type and the flamboyant idiot. Basically, three of the Ouran Host Club in military uniforms. I’m sure if I watched Ouran any further, they would have had an episode where they dressed in military uniforms.

(hmmm, maybe Ouran wasn’t so bad after all….)

I mean, it’s not like it’s that bad or anything. The animation is of good quality. The beginnings of romance are all kind of sweet. I can’t see the actual plot going anywhere interesting outside of the romances though. Just lots of little skirmishes with yokai and the people of the village. Plus, you all know already how the relationships are going to pan out. But don’t take my word for it. You should all know by now how much I dislike shojo. Just watch it for yourself and sink into a sea of sparkly flowers. Because apparently people like that sort of stuff.

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  1. Posted October 5, 2010 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    I like girly shows. but this kind of shojo is even too girly for me.

    • Scamp
      Posted October 5, 2010 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

      Friggen awesome avatar!

      • Posted October 5, 2010 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

        Thank you! Those two are so sweet.

  2. Hatsuyuki
    Posted October 5, 2010 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    Ehhhhhh. I was only going to watch this because ever sense Natsume Yuujinchou I always want to check out series involving yokai lol. But, just like I couldn’t watch Nurarihyon no Mago because it seemed like the definition of generic shounen, I can’t get into this one because it seems like any other shoujo – only with yokai thrown in to jazz it up lol. I’m okay with romance, I really am, but the blushy blushy moe moe type of romance never really got me, and from the first 15 minutes of this I watched, that’s the direction it seems to be going lol.

    • Scamp
      Posted October 5, 2010 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

      I’ve seen worse shojo. This had some cool chanting at least. And the girls are kinda hot, albeit in a shiny sort of way.

      Also, aren’t most shojo romances the blushy blushy moe moe type? That’s why everyone was squeeing over Kimi ni Todoke anyway

      • Posted October 5, 2010 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

        Not all.
        The CLAMP’s Shojo’s are usually WITH Bishonen, but the romances are realistic and touching. You know. The whole “love transcendeds everythings”. (That’s why CLAMP is one my favourites~)
        Also, while Arina Tanemura’s manga are also very flowery, it’s themes get darker while the story progresses, the characters get real character developement, the heroines are fun, witty and stand up for themselves. It’s also written very intelligently, sometimes there are phrases in the manga that let me think about them for a long time. Thats why Kamikaze Kaito Jeanne is still my favourite manga with all it’s symbolism, it’s strong yet broken heroine Marron, the way the story develops with all the plot twist and the ending. Oh the ending. (Also, when i say manga, I mean MANGA. Not anime.)
        Then there’s Oresama Teacher… o god, oresama teacher. That was an awesome shojo manga. It almost didn’t felt like shojo with all the delinquent there…
        Then there’s Dengeki Daisy. Hot evil janitors are awesome.
        And Aya Nakahara’s great shojo manga, including Lovely Complex.
        And Kare Kano!
        Also it’s not that bad if it’s flowery, it still can be awesome. Like Heartcatch Precure.

      • Hatsuyuki
        Posted October 5, 2010 at 8:37 pm | Permalink

        I’ve seen worse shoujo too, but this one makes me about as unhappy as the rest of them XD.

        That’s true of most shoujo romance, especially something like Kimi ni Todoke, but romance in other series (usually when it’s just a sub-genre) isn’t nearly as blushy and moe. The only time I can stand an overload of blushing and moe is if the romance is, at the very least, developed well. I hate when characters automatically blush and fall for eachother in .5 seconds, which this show really seems like. The girls met the guys and already seemed all sorts of sprung lol.

  3. luffyluffy
    Posted October 5, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    Ouran didn’t dress up in military but if they did… SS or Red Army? God, both would have been erotic but on Kyouya…

    • Scamp
      Posted October 5, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Permalink

      I’m amazed that they didn’t. That’s a big gap in the Ouran’s repotoire. They should feel ashamed of themsevles that they didn’t fulfill that fetish

      • Posted October 6, 2010 at 4:37 am | Permalink

        manga has PLENTY images of the host club in military uniform. including something resembling…germany…o_o

        i think the episode where they wear police uniforms counts though.

  4. Posted October 5, 2010 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

    If the audiovisual language of anime wasn’t so simple that a ten-year-old could parse it, I dare say it wouldn’t be anime.

    I’m digging the premise of this show, but I’m not sure yet if I’ll stick with it.

    • Scamp
      Posted October 5, 2010 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

      There are anime that buck that trend, but yeah. Anime wears it’s intentions on its sleave. And plastered across the front of its shirt while waving a giant flag.

  5. Posted October 5, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    I dislike your idea that shoujo must be pink and full of hexagons. :I

    • Scamp
      Posted October 5, 2010 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

      Not all! Some of them prefer to use shapes with different numbers of corners. I’ve seen a few octagons in my time

  6. Posted October 5, 2010 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

    …Just watch it for your­self and sink into a sea of sparkly flowers. Because appar­ently people like that sort of stuff.

    Hells yeah!!! I’m guessing this is going to be my guilty pleasure of the season. But come on, don’t tell me you didn’t make some kind of kyaa!-type noise over the scene when quite guy gives shy girl the bento box and kneels before her?!

    If not, I don’t believe you.

    • Scamp
      Posted October 5, 2010 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

      I have a heart of stone and never go kyaa. Kyaa is not a response I am capable of emitting.

      It was kinda sweet though. I might try use that line myself sometime…

  7. Posted October 5, 2010 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    so— why do you watch this stuff when you know you’re going to hate it? It’s like the moe-haters watching K-ON!! for no reason other than to bash it <_<

    • luffyluffy
      Posted October 5, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

      Season previews love. He watched the first episode out of all of them.

    • Scamp
      Posted October 5, 2010 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

      Becuase I might have liked it.

      Also it didn’t scream shojo from the previews. As an earlier comment said, it’s serialised in a seinen magazine and has yokai and soldiers and stuff. Natsume Yuujinchou has yokai and serialises in a shojo magazine.

      Basically, give everything a chance to prove itself. I wouldn’t have watched OreImo if I hadn’t taken that approach and that first ep really surprised me. It’s when people keep watching something they’re not enjoying that I have a problem with

      • luffyluffy
        Posted October 5, 2010 at 11:58 pm | Permalink

        OreImo’s Big Brother is Tomoya

  8. Ragnarok
    Posted October 6, 2010 at 12:55 am | Permalink

    Odd in my anime list says seinen
    If that’s true, then, this must be the girliest seinen that I’ve ever seen in my life seasoned with tons of pink and I would like to add that the sparkling background scream shoujo all over the place.
    Odd very odd.

    Now about the host club cast joins the army was one of the first things I thought and I am sure many more think the same except for shota aka honey sempai
    He isn’t like that character (I don’t know his name and I won’t bother to look for it) him , he is not a character from ouran never the less still is stereotypical where he is from?? I don’t know, not from ouran but I’ve seen him before I am sure of it.

  9. Posted October 6, 2010 at 1:07 am | Permalink

    What happened to all those good shoujo animes?? most of the shoujo animes these days are extremely ughh…

    • Posted October 6, 2010 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

      ^ This.

      Gainax should shoujo again. ^q^

  10. Kencana
    Posted October 8, 2010 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

    Just for your info, Otome Youkai Zakuro is seinen manga, not shoujo. Check wiki and baka manga.

    • Scamp
      Posted October 8, 2010 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

      So? If it walks like a duck etc.

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