Category Archives: Manabi Straight

Mikan Straight, or Really まっすぐ Go!!

While it’s not uncommon for TV anime to release a straight-to-video bonus episode or two, few has done it so tightly knit with the TV airing as Manabi Straight.

Having seen it almost half a year later, it also reminded me how much I miss this motley crew.

And Momo.

And UFOTable’s weird quirks.

April?

Talking with a few people about this OAV reminds me how the saccharine-laced ending may be too much for some, and the bittersweetness does not hit the spot of ultimate satisfaction.

This is a Chinese regional special

Still, bitterness and hardship are flavors of life that we all taste as we grow older. It brings character to a story, and gives the characters traction with the viewers’ minds.

For a bonus episode, this is heavy stuff. I guess that’s how Manabi Straight find its audience.

snapshot20071017134712

Celebrating the end of summer…a couple weeks late. Noticed the full moon?


Well Done, Mikan; the Mystery Continues?

Mikan loses to Konoka by 6 votes in round 2 of Saimoe 2007. She joins her crew in the heaven of lost moeliciousness, having an beerice cream.

Goodbye!

According to this post on 2ch, foreign votes affected the outcome since Konoka got an extra 59 votes, sealing the deal.

And I bet most of those 59 votes are cast by people who speak English. Or not? At first glance, that data just concludes how foreign votes (IP not originating from Japan) pan out to, as I’ll cut and paste below:
0543 0400 0143 41.17% 37.59% 56.08% 26.34% 近衛木乃香@ネギま!?
0537 0453 0084 40.71% 42.58% 32.94% 15.64% 稲森光香(みかん)@がくえんゆーとぴあ まなびストレート!
0239 0211 0028 18.12% 19.83% 10.98% 11.72% 沙英@ひだまりスケッチ
In other words, out of the total 543 votes, 143 of Konoka’s votes originates outside of Japan. That could simply means people in Japan are voting from non-Japanese IPs, so it is inconclusive merely through that as to which demographic contributed to :3-chan’s loss.

A look at the by-the-hour chart of vote allocation, we get a better picture–Mikan held a comfortable lead at first, but it slowly went away until the end of polls, where she was upset. If we take the presumption of average internet usage–that Saimoe and its kin of tomfoolery take place during the night (8pm-2am) rather than during the day, we can see that Japan (and maybe Korea and Singapore and China and other locations with people interested in Saimoe) is still chiefly to blame for the downfall. It’s curious, as well, because Mikan had a demanding lead right off the bat, and it’s unlikely the same demographic had two different sways so drastically different.

Perhaps that means there are two divisive faction on 2ch when it comes to Saimoe–the people who keeps up with anime and people who do not? The latter is likely who votes early in the day (but near the end of the contest) and the former can stay up and watch those late-night shows, and vote on Saimoe as it begins the next day. But we don’t have to go that far…

The western fanbase failed–the shrinking lead during the eek hours would suggest as much. In the 12-hour gap between 5am Japan time and 5pm Japan time we see Mikan’s lead erode from 70 to 42, and that would’ve been peak hours for Europeans, all the Americans, and more.

It still smells suspicious, however. Ah well. It just means today the sun shines a little dimmer compared to tomorrow.


Help Manabi In Saimoe 2007

Vote Manabi!

まっすぐGO!!

Let Japan know people in the world care about bringing a piece of angelic goodness down! Vote Manabi today! (You have about 17 hours left!).

A guide on how to vote and all about Saimoe is available here.


Mugi-Choco’s Cream Filling

Or, No Wait, I Mean Message, Yeah That’s It.

I think I’m finally hooked on Japanese-style text-only 2ch-style Shift_JIS UI-Gothic what-the images. Damn you Saimoe, damn you to hell! It’s like 1994 all over again.

Actually, this is Barasuisho

But jokes aside, I think now it’s a good time to talk about Mugi Asai and Hitohira. It’s particularly insightful once pinned next to Manabi Straight. Because, you know, I wuuubs Manabi Straight.

To cut to the chase, Mugi Asai, the main character in Hitohira, experienced a transformation from a shy, introverted person to someone who has gotten over herself, with the help of someone else who was in her place a year before. Within the span of a school year, she bonded with this sempai and, well, drama happens. It’s a nice little piece of 12-episode anime that elaborates on Mika’s dilemma from the last 2 episodes of Manabi Straight.

But I watched Manabi Straight before Hitohira, and I suspect if you had your experience flipped chronologically, it may be just the same, with some words flipped. Which, after all, explains why Hitohira (which means petal) is the image I picked for this blog post (well–it sort of looks like 5 petals of a cherry blossom). And why it’s there to be picked as an eyecatch from the actual show, as a reasonable guess.

With her latest victory from Saimoe, it seemed that a lot of people got good vibes from her. And I can see why. Definitely a highly-recommend for those of you who can withstand high school drama in its finest amateur moment.


Convention of the まっすぐ GO!! Generation

Next time I blog I’ll be in Baltimore attending Otakon. The Baltimore Convention Center does not have free wifi despite a city-wide initiative. However, some of the surrounding areas do. In any event I will blog from the hotel room at the very minimum.

I pray that the mid-summer Baltimore weather will beat upon us no worse than that is necessary, and I can find time both to relax and to be excited about life, universe, and everything. It’s not just to celebrate anime with friends and share a good time, but in a conscious way to deepen my relationship with God in a familiar but shockingly strange environment, in preparation for the thing that have yet to come.

As the “straight ahead-Go” generation that we are, I think that anime fans are some of the best types that 21st century geekdom has to offer. In some ways this means that some external forces may take advantage of us more so and we’ll cause problems with our straightforward mannerisms, but on the flip side it also shows some degree of tenacity that the long-time fans possess. In any case, rain or shine, we will be there and entertaining our favorite guests at this anime convention. If you are going, I pray that you too will do it share this enthusiasm at this mutual geeking-out.