Monday, 17 October 2011

Bakuman Season 2 - Episode 3

So, the early results for the first chapter of Ashirogi Muto's Shonen Jack debut are out....

...and they "only" placed third, not quite the dizzy heights of first place that our pair of artists were hoping for.  Despite the assertions of their manager that this is a good thing, Mashiro and Takagi struggle to hide their disappointment, but vow to carry on working hard regardless.  Little do they know that even tougher times are ahead come the release of chapter two.

For now though, the rest of this episode actually deviates its focus on Mashiro and Takagi, and instead drifts off in the direction of some of the other manga creators we were introduced to in the first season.  More specifically, we catch up with what Aoki is up to, as she shifts her attentions from Shonen Jack to Jack Square in an attempt to find something which better fits the demographic for her work, while her next step is to team up with musician turned mangaka Koogy.  Of course, this move proves to be a big shock for Aoki's previous partner in drawing Nakai, and with Aoki claiming that it's his subpar artwork that is at fault he sets out to prove that he can get better in his field by literally drawing all night, every night outside her house, come cold or snow.  The word "stalker" springs to mind, but maybe it's just what Aoki needs to see to understand her own shortcomings...

Although I'd rather stick with Moritaka and Akito's story at this juncture, this was a reasonably good change in focus, if only by allowing us to catch up with some of the regulars from Bakuman's first season.  The episode also managed to avoid going for the same cliff-hanger as last week (where it left us hanging on the results of the popularity survey in Shonen Jack), if only barely, which is a relief - after spending some time with this outside distraction, I'm looking forward to getting back to the heart of what this series is all about in episode four.

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