Posted by psgels on 20 August 2009 with categories: Aoi Hana



This entry starts with a spoiler so you may want to look away if you’re skimming through this paragraph. Holy crap, they actually broke up, and this doesn’t look like they’re going to get back together at this rate. It’s a bit of a shame though. It’s a bit predictable that Fumi is going to end up with Akira after all, since I really liked how originally this series didn’t seem to go down the clichéd road of childhood friends becoming lovers. Nevertheless, this was yet another truly excellent episode for Aoi Hana.

Anyway, I have no idea what’s going to happen with this series. Everyone says that this series is only going to last for 11 episodes, but I really doubt this. The reason why Michiko e Hatchin and Ristorante Paradiso had so few episodes was because they had a really strange broadcasting policy: Ristopara had a bunch of hiatuses in the beginning, while Michiko e Hatchin had one of the weirdest broadcasting policies I’ve ever run into when it kept getting to hiatuses one week and air double episodes the next. With Aoi Hana however, every episode aired like it was supposed to, and I find it really hard to believe that it’s already going to be over in three weeks. Speaking of which, is it already known which series is going to be the next one to fill in the Noise time-slot, or is that even unknown? Because in the case of the latter, we might have ourselves a 26-episode series here….

Anyway, what struck me the most in this episode was the incredibly cold way in which Yasuko talked to Kyouko, who found out that Fumi was dumped through Akira. That was absolutely nothing like what I expected from her. She must have been really upset with her sister marrying the teacher that she was in love with, and so she vented all of her frustrations on Fumi and Kyouko. In that way, she’s even worse than Fumi in her sulking about her past crush. And it took me a while to realize how similar the two of them are. It’s really a huge shame that they broke up, but unfortunately it really seems that Fumi has lost her feelings for Yasuko.

Also, the drawings and animation in this series are incredibly good when two people are touching each other in some way, whether messing with each other’s hair, hugging, or just holding each other’s hands. Those are the scenes that you can almost feel coming to life.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

11 Responses

  1. TJR says:

    Eh? Noitamina/Noise shows tend to run for only 11 episodes now (or 22 eps. for a rare two-cour run), so that would actually be the norm. DVD listings for Aoi Hana and Tokyo Magnitude 8.0 also confirm 11 episodes for each.

    At any rate, Aoi Hana is an ongoing manga, and the show covers 3/4 published volumes, so there isn’t enough material for a two-cour set.

    No word on the next NOISE series, unfortunately. The time slot is a flop, so I wouldn’t be surprised if Fuji discontinued it. However, there’s still a slight chance (I’d argue that it’s too late in the game, but you never know) that they might surprise us with an announcement……

  2. AlexS says:

    Psgels: would you mind trying not to put a spoiler so prominently at the beginning of your entry? (I’m talking about the break up)

    Because I’m dependent on the subs, I often skim the beginning of entries about episodes which I have not yet seen (not really voluntarily, just hard to avoid). So it would help if you could delay a bit that kind of information. Usually you are pretty good at it, and I realize it is often difficult to avoid (I did not read the rest of the entry, so perhaps it was hard to discuss it in any other way).

    I like when you introduce the entry with a general comment that does not reveal much, but gives an indication of your appreciation. I also often check the rating you gave before watching the episode (it helps manage expectations).

  3. psgels psgels says:

    AlexS: Ah, sorry. Since I also watched this episode with subs I assumed that most people had already seen it. Thanks for reminding me of this. I thought that it was a pretty mild spoiler since the previous episode also hinted it, but if it’s too much I’ll take this into account for the future.

  4. specracer says:

    It always surprises me how much this show sticks to the manga, but if they keep going at this pace their going to start catching up to the manga. I certainly hope they don’t do like Claymore and create an ending to a manga that is no where near finished.

    Maybe they’ll do like Narutaru(shadow star) and find a good place in the manga to stop

  5. AlexS says:

    psgels: Thanks for modifying the entry. You’re right, it’s a mild spoiler, but I was still wondering from last week if it was just a tantrum or something more serious, as it turned out to be.

    You are right about the subs, and I have now watched the episode (which I liked a lot). But since I use your entries to know what is out, I never watch an episode before seeing it coming up in your blog.

    Otherwise I agree with specracer: better to leave the anime unfinished than to abruptly terminate it with a lame ending.

  6. kaei says:

    You’ve mentioned in a previous post how you consider Fumi was being selfish and “sulking” about her past crush — I confess I didn’t read all the comments so so apologies in advance if you’ve already gotten into an extended discussion of this already — I just wanted to suggest that when Fumi was bringing up her past crush, she wasn’t doing it from a self-pitying place, but more of an empathizing “Oh, I know exactly what you’re going through, because I totally just went through something really similar myself with someone else, and it was unrequited, so I know exactly how you feel! But it’s okay now, because you can find love again, and now I’m happy, with you–” and instead of getting that emotion across, Sugimoto smacks her down.

    Anyway, just wanted to point out an alternate viewpoint, since it casts a more sympathetic light on Fumi (and I totally blame Sugimoto for their breakup. Grrrr Sugimoto.) Of course you’re free to disagree :)

    Thanks as always for your thoughts!

  7. Sapphire says:

    I don’t know if Fumi and Akira are supposed to end up as a couple, but I really hope they don’t because it wouldn’t be credible at all. I would easily believe in Fumi’s love for Akira, she’s obviously attracted to girls and she has liked Akira since they were kids – her feelings could naturally develop into something deeper. However, Akira never showed any romantic interest in girls (she’s even at least slightly interested in guys, or else she wouldn’t have gone to that double date with Kyouko) and she never looked at Fumi as something more than her best friend.

    If this series had 52 episodes, maybe they could find a way to make us believe that Akira is/will be in love with Fumi. As they only have 3 episodes left (at least for now), I really hope they stay realistic.

  8. terrorist says:

    @Sapphire
    I totally agree with you, 11 episodes aren’t really enough to develop Akira. However there were a lot of hints which showed us that Akira maybe hadn’t realised but she had some interest in girls. For Example I remember 2 special moments.
    First one: When Ikumi said she liked someone Akiras doubts were: “I think that the person she likes is a girl”. Why would normal teenager would assume so. ‘Cause Achan likes girls as well! Well at least deep inside her heart she does. xD
    Second One: When Fumi confessed to Achan that she was going out with Sugimoto, Achan thought: “Somehow I am not surprised at all”.
    So Directors’ve put a lot of work and thoughts in this series and I love it so far. Hope ending’s going to be as believable as characters has been :)

  9. Sapphire says:

    @terrorist
    ” When Ikumi said she liked someone Akiras doubts were: “I think that the person she likes is a girl”. Why would normal teenager would assume so. ”
    I think Akira thought Kyouko was in love with a girl because she was a bit flirtatious towards A-chan when they first met (Kyouko even told her she was adorable or something). Besides, your own sexual orientation has nothing to do with your perception of other people’s preferences.

    ” When Fumi confessed to Achan that she was going out with Sugimoto, Achan thought: “Somehow I am not surprised at all”. ”
    She could have noticed something different about Fumi since they were kids, but never really figured out what it was. And again, that doesn’t necessarily mean she’s attracted to girls too.

    However, Akira does seem like she hasn’t put a lot of effort into figuring out her own romantic feelings, she just seems to worry about being a good friend. It definitely leaves an open space for a lot of development, but at this point, I can’t see anything as a hint showing a deeper feeling for Fumi.

  10. Mooniecat says:

    The best place to end in the anime from the manga point would be to just end at the break of school years. It is still possible because they seem to be kinda setting up for it.

  11. Amadora says:

    First of all, very nice blog you have here. Second, I like reading your reviews for this particular series. I’ve been looking for another shoujo-ai series to watch now (after completing Marimite), and immediately watched Aoi Hana as soon as I found out about it. It’s too bad about Sugimoto taking out her anger on Fumi, I thought they made a cute couple. I’m slightly disappointed it’s only 11 episodes though. (It’s such a weird number. . .why not 13? lol) I look forward to your upcoming reviews. :)

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  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 04:15 PM)
    And I’d go as far to say this beats out birdman for me by miles.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 04:14 PM)
    The film is a solid mood piece thanks to the in tone cinematography, a great performance from Hoffman that along with his characters drama makes for an emotionally investing film. And before it gets TOO sad theres all those bits of dark humour fitted in there that work out pretty well. This is probably my favourite work by Kaufman currently.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 04:14 PM)
    Well Bam, I had a go of synecdoche there. A bit of a slow burner, near the end slightly drawn out, however that last stretch was forgiven by that bonkers ending.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 01:23 PM)
    The voice of the main character got kind of annoying though, the dub wasn’t all that good either.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 01:22 PM)
    This was based on/was a homage to a series by the Gigantor creator and having grown up with gigantors 90s reboot this felt like a nice throwback, plot is fairly simple but used effectively. It’s a shame that it feels like there was more to tell but at seven episodes I suppose it avoids outstaying its welcome.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 01:20 PM)
    Decided to marathon Giant Robo, I think this was mentioned by someone on here before. I guess it was fairly entertaining, great action direction, looked good for its time, you don’t notice the hour long episodes go by, adequate characters, nice retro artstyle also, not sure if I got excited over this as big O and Mazinger however but still fun enough nonetheless.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 07:10 AM)
    Seeing Hoffman in before the devil knows your dead and his character being dependent on drugs, that was another thing that hit me a bit knowing the circumstances of his death. Watching most wanted man I could also see that he was wearing out physically.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 07:00 AM)
    This is not Anno bitching about otakus jacking off to his characters and turning around and selling Rei panties, this isn’t the idiots at Shaft throwing around meaningless camera angles and the oh-so-symbolic teeth brushing scenes, this is a human being looking you in the eye with fear and telling you that he’s dying; morbid, honest, moving and remarkable.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:55 AM)
    Given my rants regarding Birdman it should be clear that I’m a sucker for these rare instances where the line between movie and reality get blurred- when an actor looks at a camera and just bares their heart out. This is the realism that reality tv tried but could never capture. this is art in one of its most sincere forms.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:50 AM)
    Oh yeah Hoffman was a massive talent and a beloved actor, so I don’t take it lightly when I call Synecdoche his greatest role ever. Given his death and knowing the circumstances of his life at the time imbues this performance with a chilling sincerity that just breaks your heart and leaves you in awe.

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