Posted 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 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
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:56 PM)
    You can justify your call to indifference, after all it’s much easier than doing anything.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:56 PM)
    That’s fine, let them have their pandering shows and whatnot, just don’t squander the ones that have potential. I’m sure there are a lot of people that told the blacks that “whining is futile” and just accept slavery as a way of life. And they were right untill someone did something about it. Animation as a medium was deemed as for kids only, again till a few did something about it.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:52 PM)
    As for why they aim for teenagers most of the time it’s because it’s the time where it will hit the most demographics. Aim for kids and you knock out the adults. Aim for adult and you knock out the kids. Aim for teenagers and you get both as Kids look forward to being teens and Adults generally have a nostalgia for the golden days(So to speak)
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:47 PM)
    The greats are great because they are rare. Whining about a lack of quailty is a futility. Because these things arn’t made using creativity, they are made using money to get money.
    Besides, Pandering entertainment can still be entertaining in its own way
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:43 PM)
    @Bam, somehow I think you don’t get it. We arn’t almost near anything.
    Being a fan is always a matter of wading through the garbage to find gold. A film fan must put up with the michel bays, amercain pies and that one romantic comedy movie that they keep remaking to get the kubriks. Music fans need to put up with those songs that sound like 50 other songs to get the greats. Video game fans, the sequels and knock offs to get the Okami’s. It’s the same.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:14 PM)
    It is indeed human to rebel against what we cannot accept, but in this case specially, because it feels that we are almost there but somehow we keep getting further. We get the talents together and then they bomb. Most unfortunate.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:11 PM)
    My advice is, stop being in denial. It’s all well and good that you believe that if the public demands intelual shows, they will get them. Thing is if they did we would not be getting a third season fo dog days. Face it man, we are lucky to get even a Mushishi.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:10 PM)
    Yeah but psgels’ taste is closer to ours so we should be able to hub here and share our love as well as disdain of shows freely here.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:09 PM)
    yeah it had all the makings to be good tho, so it is reasonable expecting of pedigree such as Watanabe and Kanno to do better.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Aug 21. 2014 01:07 PM)
    @Bam, the internet is full of idiots. Idiots who cannot appreciate the draws of such shows. You must have noticed by now.

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