Saturday, October 16, 2010
2010 been an absolutely dire year for televised anime over here in Japan, with most of the more innovative studios (Madhouse, Production I.G, Gonzo, Studio 4°C) seemingly in hibernation over the past twelve months – or at the very least keeping their claws sheathed.
While Madhouse did pull off something nifty in the Redline feature movie directed by Takeshi Koike, and Keiichi Hara’s anime movie Colorful has been one of the cinematic highlights this year, the medium was lacklustre on the tellies.
It’s quite clear that the Japanese anime scene is going through a rough patch right now, very much like that which has crippled the newspaper/magazine and music industries, which may (or may not) have a bit to do with either the Internet or the global financial downturn or both; I’ll leave that appraisal to better qualified people.
There is a bright note here, however.
One series that's kept me amused and even a little infatuated over the past six months or so has been HeartCatch PreCure!, the infectious, disarming kids’ series you might've spotted elsewhere in this rambling blog.
The yarn started up with our shy, upright schoolgirl heroine Tsubomi (Cure Blossom), swathed in pink, who was joined by trusty neighbour and fashion-minded sidekick Erika (the all-blue Cure Marine). Five months into the series, the third heroine emerged with the gold-hued, androgynous Itsuki (Cure Sunshine) – who dresses in boys clothes but shines in her girly PreCure persona.
More recently, over the past few weeks, a reticent, quietly cantankerous and quite possibly bitter senior high school student, Yuri, was revealed to be the purple-shrouded Cure Moonlight - the predecessor of our other three champions who lost her powers in a big battle with Dark Pretty Cure (that's a long story for another blog entry - or not) and two weeks ago had those powers and her attire restored.
I'd like to pretend to have some dignity, but stuff that - bring on tomorrow morning's episode...
Oh, and my excuse is that I watch it to spend time with my four-year-old daughter Cocoa, who also loves the series. Which one of us digs it the most is up for debate.
For a bit of a sneak preview, here you get to see Cure Moonlight reclaim her identity a couple of weeks back (zounds!):
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