Posted on 9 February 2008 with categories: Shigofumi ~ Stories of the Last Letter


This week, Shigofumi is about a rather extreme case of bullying. The bullies are ruthless in every single way, but this episode is told from a rather interesting viewpoint: from a guy who happens to be in the same class as the bullies, but in the beginning has nothing to do with them. He never takes any action, and finds the bullied guy rather pathetic (which in a way is true. The guy has really gone crazy under the pressure). Then, when the bullied guy asks for his help, he declines, and instead betrays the guy to the bullies (did anyone else think of Kaiji when that beam appeared?). After that, the bullied commits suicide, and the bullies find themselves a new victim in the main character, who now understand how hard it is to be bullied.

Well, I think that it’s clear now that Shigofumi lacks any form of subtlety. It knows how to build up, but it’s interesting how it never tries to go too deep, and instead presents its story quite straightforward. It’s interesting how basically the entire episode says “thou shalt not bully”, and how the symbolism with the puppies was quite straightforward. It kind-of matches Fumika’s approach when she delivers the Shigofumi as well: all that matters is to deliver the Shigofumi, and everything that’s in the way doesn’t matter. I usually like series with a bit more subtlety, but a series with a subtlety like this one also is nice once in a while.

There’s one thing I couldn’t understand about this episode, though. At the end of this episode, we see how the main character stabs one of the bullies with a screwdriver (quite an interesting method to get rid of them), which he posts on a local bbs, it seems. We then switch to a completely unrelated girl, who reads the bbs as well, and seems to get bullied too. She then makes a phone-call to an unknown person and the episode ends. What was that about? Did we meet that girl before? Or was that just an introduction to the next episode? I’m going to assume that it’s the latter.

5 Responses

  1. Becky says:

    What site do you download from? I was getting Shigofumi from anime suki but they took it down, saying it was licensed.

  2. psgels psgels says:

    I get my files raw from the program called share. If you want the subs of the show, either buy the dvds when they come out, or go to tokyotosho.com

  3. totoum says:

    Some say the beam walking was an intended refererence to kaiji,aparantly because one the guys says “hey lets play a game i saw in a manga” or something like that.

    I think that the girl at the end just called for help after she read the forum,could be wrong though.

  4. stakh says:

    My biggest problem with this episode is that the shigofumi itself did not bring anything to the story. Basically they wasted an episode.

    I must say that on the whole I’m disappointed with the series so far, they are wasting an excellent premise because of lack of imagination and depth.

  5. yoshi927 says:

    This was an interesting episode, to me. Not particularly great, but pretty cool.

    Skeptical note of the week; I love how they have no idea what would happen to them if they got caught killing someone in a stupid prank. They’ve already seen a janitor or guard on the roof once.

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  • Emma
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 07:59 AM)
    And holy hell,it would appear I have a thing for Tsukiyama and Touka =)
    The direction was very good when things hit the fan in the last few episodes too.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 07:53 AM)
    Additionally, the rushed pacing in the end it never came to bother me, I think from reading the whole manga that it needed a good pruning/trimming and what was left was the worthwhile material. I never really cared much for the characterization in the manga, it wasn’t all that miss-able.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 07:51 AM)
    Marathoned the tokyo ghoul anime there on a whim. I enjoyed seeing the fights animated even though visually there was room for improvement in places, the censoring while poor in places was nowhere near as bad as I had expected and didn’t ruin things for me as I thought it might.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 06:36 AM)
    At this point they have become a caricature of their own subcultures lol
  • Bam
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 06:25 AM)
    I mean we like the edgy, dark, gory sex stuff with a grotesque twist but the J-pop inspired art with star-shaped eyeliners, Ganguro, the green hair and accessorizing with 16 belts and dog collars … probably not as much.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 06:23 AM)
    @K-off: yeah that and a misunderstanding of the nature of the world’s infatuation with Japanese culture.
  • k-off
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 06:15 AM)
    @Bam They started falling apart when they began streamlining the game for casual players. Same story with so many good developers.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 06:07 AM)
    I mean I get it, SquareEnix has lost quite a lot of face. I like action RPGs tho so I think given the graphics and the gameplay framework this could’ve been something special, but it seems that bad character designs, writing, and the J-popification of the series is continuing on with this one.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 06:07 AM)
    @Bam: Lost interest in the FF franchise arounf FF10, had a love/hate relationship with 11.
  • k-off
    (Friday, Sep 19. 2014 06:04 AM)
    @Bam Eh, I’m already going to blow all of my money on Civilization BNW, Witcher, and Alien, so that’s the last thing on my list. I really refuse to buy into the hype for the FF franchise anymore.

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