Sunday, 19 October 2008

Yozakura Quartet - Episode 3

I've already marked out Yozakura Quartet as being oddly likeable (and from what I've seen it's currently going down pretty well in Japan too), but somehow being entertained by an episode about a fat dog who gets turned into some kind of speeding bullet has to pretty much cement that "I'm not sure why I kinda like this, but I do" sentiment that this series gives me.

The dog that I'm referring to turns up on Hime's doorstep in the middle of training at the beginning of the episode, before we flash forward one month to find that the animal (called Silver, in case you care) has become a loyal pet, and a decidedly fat one at that. The bad news is that Hime's devotion to Silver is seen as weaker leadership by some of the residents, an issue which burns at the heart of her commitment to the mayoral cause, and thus gives her some tough decisions to make.

In essence, these decisions are made for her as Silver runs away after she punishes him a little too sternly, at which point the evil fox demon who we still don't really know a lot about happens upon him and turns him into "super evil speeding bullet demon dog thing", before eventually making him into a full-on demon that has to be dealt with in the usual fashion.

Despite its hardly world-class animation, and pretty basic plot points that make even Wagaya no Oinari-sama look complicated, Yozakura Quartet continues to 'just work' on some level, which I can only put down to the fact that all of the main characters have a refreshingly simple, warm and enjoyable relationship with one another - Despite their individual special powers (and all that lightning, which seems to be the special effect du jour for this series) they really do often seem like a bunch of normal people sharing an office, which makes for a surprisingly down-to-earth tone for the show even when it gets speeding flying demon dogs thrown into the mix. In other words, it's just a bit of uncomplicated fun, which isn't a bad thing every once in a while.

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