Posted by psgels on 8 November 2009 with categories: Aoi Bungaku




Oh, I love this. The various adaptations are really all going to be completely different: different graphics, different soundtrack, different OP. The only thing that’s the same is the ED. This episode was awesome, but for totally different reasons as No Longer Human was. What he hell have I just been watching?

This arc features the adaptation of “In the Woods Beneath the Cherry Blossoms in Full Bloom” (which I’ll just keep abbreviated as “In the Woods” from now on. Instead of the serious No Longer Human, this short takes a more light-hearted approach. At first this worried me a bit, but the deadpan humour of the lead guy was hilarious. You hardly ever see good deadpans in anime, but I really like that type of humour.

The story in this was just… weird. Which made it even better. Here we have a rugged bandit whose skills are second to none. He lives with a bunch of women he captured. His latest addition is very spoiled and bratty, so she doesn’t want to live together with them. However, the lead guy is in love with her. so what does he do? He kills off every woman but one. What?!

This episode just oozed style. Is this really an adaptation of classic literature? I can really hardly tell. The creators of the anime added the funky atmosphere, a terrific set of voice actors, a bunch of insert songs, seamlessly integrated with the story and an MP3-player. I’m not kidding. Beats me where this guy got the batteries from.

And the graphics! This episode was a visual orgasm beyond belief, and Madhouse have truly outdone themselves yet again! Some of the backgrounds looked truly fantastic here, and this definitely was the prettiest episode of this season.

Seriously, why aren’t there more series like Aoi Bungaku?? This is just utter brilliance, and you can see that the creators are throwing in lots of stuff and ideas to spice up this episode. You could see that they had a lot of fun adapting this work. I love the idea of the little specks of blood on the camera when one of the guys was killed. The pacing, the timing, just about everything felt right in this episode.
Rating: *** (Awesome)
OP: Funky, catchy and gorgeous visuals. Fits the story perfectly.

11 Responses

  1. LimeWarrior says:

    This episode has character designs by Tite Kubo (aka. Bleach). I can see a ton of Tite’s style in this episode. Basically it had all the things I love about Bleach. The devil may care attitudes, the zany humor, the outrageous style. Classic, I can’t wait for the next one.

  2. psgels psgels says:

    Awesome. I always wondered what it’d be like to watch Bleach without all the bad and terrible parts.

  3. m says:

    The backgrounds are nice, but the character designs are inconsistent. After the straightforward movie-like adaptation of Ningen Shikkaku this really took me off guard. I thought Aoi Bungaku was going to be conservative and focus on execution, but here we are with something way out there. I wasn’t really sold on the approach until they turned it into a musical routine. That was a pretty entertaining way to round the sharp edges off of mass murder without neutering it completely.

  4. C says:

    The episode was interesting however one thing that did bug me was the bandit’s voice. Is the seiyuu the same one they used for Youzo? Each time he speaks I can’t help but think of Youzo.. lol so that’s going to take some getting used to. Otherwise pretty awesome :)

  5. marumaru says:

    Awesome.I love this!

  6. Reltair says:

    Aoi Bungaku is amazing. This arc feels so vastly different from the previous one. The scene with the gum and mp3 player was quite amusing. I still chuckle when I think about it.

  7. Kamibito says:

    I liked how the episode skipped between funkiness and downright creepiness just like that. I wonder if the original was like that too?

  8. om zozo says:

    i love this story its so much better than no longor humen
    i didnt even believe that its the same anime because of the style difference
    i loved it when he killed his ex wives
    it was a huge turn

  9. Julian says:

    This episode is so stereotzpical and metaphoric of the japanese culture…If zou trz to look more closely,you’ll realize what’s the metaphor on this show: The women, the heads, the woman, the city girl, the city, the wives appearances (Ex. American), the masks during the killing spree, the little girl, the mp3 and all the odd things that were showed here….all of them had their own meaning….what a wonderful adaption.

  10. I absolutely love this too!!! Apparently it’s actually an allegory about the dysfunctional relationship between man and nature, inspired by the modernization/industrialization of Postwar Japan. It’s a totally fascinating anime on so many levels–def. my favorite of the new fall season shows by a mile.

  11. hellomoto says:

    For me, Aoi Bungaku was kind of a shaky series. I thought No Longer Human was great, albeit not excellent. However, this episode, as you said, was truly epic. The song the woman sings when the man kills the other woman is melodic yet creepy at the same time. It sent chills down my spine–in a pleasurable way, that is.

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  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 04:30 AM)
    @Kaiser: despite me liking Tue genre and the cast, I couldn’t get into Inherent Vice. I’m not really familiar with Pynchon either, so that could be it.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 04:29 AM)
    @SuperMario: have you browsed the Pentamerone fairytales? They are absurdly brutal in some cases. Not giving much away, but I actually preferred this to the knight in shining armor cliche. Times were tough for women in the 15th century, it’d be doing them a disservice to sugercoat that fact.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 02:30 AM)
    @Bam: Meant to ask you, are you a fan of Thomas Pynchon’s work?
    I re-watched Inherent vice today which was based on a book by him, complex noir thing, made more sense on second viewing and was pretty funny. Figured you’d be into it given its stoner fiction origins.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 02:23 AM)
    Some people literally do live off patreon though on drawing hentai art though as their sole income.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 02:18 AM)
    @Bam: I know that film by name but I will be watching it either now or tomorrow.
  • SuperMario
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 02:10 AM)
    Matteo Garrone directed Gomorrah (2008), Reality (2011) which all were screened at Cannes, as well as this one. I liked Tale of Tales well enough, the only thing that I don’t like about the film is the treatment of women. They paid their prices just because of their lust.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 01:30 AM)
    I ran into the weirdest movie last night: an English speaking French-British-Italian movie called Tale of Tales. Loosely based on the Pentamerone series of folklore, it was a pretty dark yet vibrant-looking collection of fairytales, slimly connected by a main plot. I don’t know much about this director Matteo Garrone, but he has a unique style.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 01:25 AM)
    @K-off: I think Patreon recipients mostly fail during the first year. Just as with Kickstarter, you only hear of a very few that result in anything worthwhile; and pointing at 2-3 successes in an ocean of failures doesn’t really imply effectiveness.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 01:21 AM)
    @Kaiser: Kaufman and Hoffman were a match made in heaven; also weird that they rhyme with each other.
    The only Kaufman match-up that might get close would be him and Spike Jonze working on a Nicholas Cage flick. That man is really a mystery to me.
  • k-off
    (Saturday, Apr 30. 2016 09:29 PM)
    @Kaiser Someone who actually still likes Nicholas Cage outside of his internet memes? To me he’s one of those actors who at this point, I can’t visualize playing a role outside of himself. Similar to how I can’t see any of Steve Carrell’s movies without seeing Michael Scott.

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