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Old 2012-08-07, 00:15   Link #1961
Triple_R
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Yeah, I have to agree with Sol.

Perhaps ironically, the very same flaws that Akito points out is precisely why Achiga-hen is a show that any true Saki anime fan should watch.

It's true that Achiga-hen doesn't stand on its own all that well... and that's because I don't think it's meant to. It's more supplementary material than true spinoff, imo. But its supplementary material is strong, compelling, and informative enough that I also would consider it required viewing for fans of the Saki franchise.


My impression is that the three most important characters in Saki-verse are Nodoka and the Miyanaga sisters. Achiga-hen goes into considerable detail over Nodoka's personal backstory, and really highlights how Nodoka is the Kevin Bacon of the high school mahjong world.

Teru is showcased brilliantly in Achiga-hen, and so getting to see her here will go a long way to fully appreciating Teru in any future Saki anime shows, imo.

And there are some nice subtle hints about the strained sibling relationship between Teru and Saki and what might be fueling it.


Another thing I want to add, Akito, is that I actually think you were a bit too hard on the Achiga-hen protagonists. I myself initially had difficulties telling Kuro and Ako apart, but that had at least as much to with visual similarities as personality ones. Thankfully, Kuro was in the Teru match, and that alone will forever distinguish her from Ako for me.

I also think that personality-wise Shizuno is pretty good and distinctive. She's a fiercely fiery competitor with real genki girl spunk. And she wears virtually nothing from the waist down... how can she not stand out to you?


All of that being said, you raise some valid points against Achiga-hen. I do think that Achiga-hen is the classic case of an anime adhering too tightly to its source material, causing pacing problems for the anime. It might have been more effective if they had wrote some anime original material to stretch out some of the mahjong matches featured in the first few episodes.
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Old 2012-08-07, 02:50   Link #1962
Akuma Kinomoto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sol Falling View Post
If I may add, the most obvious/greatest element in Achiga which connects it and makes it relevant to the original series is the tremendous focus this series devotes to Teru. I notice that your review didn't really bring up any mention of this element.
I didn't bring up Teru because I'm assessing this anime on its own. Instead I treated her as the role of "Koromo" and in that regard I feel she was one of the few "originals" who managed to stand independently in the show.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
It's true that Achiga-hen doesn't stand on its own all that well... and that's because I don't think it's meant to. It's more supplementary material than true spinoff, imo. But its supplementary material is strong, compelling, and informative enough that I also would consider it required viewing for fans of the Saki franchise.
If it's closer to supplementary material then a few OVAs would have sufficed. I really question the move to base an entire cour of televised content as supplementary material. Informative? Indeed. The other two? Let me get back to you on that.
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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
And there are some nice subtle hints about the strained sibling relationship between Teru and Saki and what might be fueling it.
Hrm? I've noticed some apprehension from Saki in both shows regarding Teru but I'm not seeing any hints as to what estranged them. Obviously it should be majhong related but I'm clueless beyond that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Another thing I want to add, Akito, is that I actually think you were a bit too hard on the Achiga-hen protagonists. I myself initially had difficulties telling Kuro and Ako apart, but that had at least as much to with visual similarities as personality ones. Thankfully, Kuro was in the Teru match, and that alone will forever distinguish her from Ako for me.

I also think that personality-wise Shizuno is pretty good and distinctive. She's a fiercely fiery competitor with real genki girl spunk. And she wears virtually nothing from the waist down... how can she not stand out to you?
I think I would have let this anime pass as a harmless supplement for the main series had it not been for Toki. When a character in a spin-off is introduced and is about as good as any of the best characters in its parent series, how could you not expect me to expect more from everyone else? The design similarities aren't too noticeable for me or else I would have mistaken Momo for Arata who are closer to each other in looks than Kuro and Ako.

And sorry. I was too busy d'aaawwwing over Ryuka's overprotectiveness of Toki.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
All of that being said, you raise some valid points against Achiga-hen. I do think that Achiga-hen is the classic case of an anime adhering too tightly to its source material, causing pacing problems for the anime. It might have been more effective if they had wrote some anime original material to stretch out some of the mahjong matches featured in the first few episodes.
Ssshhh. You're not supposed to question the validity of the sacred source material.
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Old 2012-08-07, 07:04   Link #1963
Sol Falling
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Akito Kinomoto View Post
I didn't bring up Teru because I'm assessing this anime on its own. Instead I treated her as the role of "Koromo" and in that regard I feel she was one of the few "originals" who managed to stand independently in the show.
The point is that Teru cannot really be called on any level an "original" or "independent" aspect of Achiga. Teru (and by extension, Shiraitodai) are the unmistakeable final bosses of the main Saki storyline and one of the chief functions Achiga-hen achieved has been fleshing them out in preview of their impending clash in the Finals with Kiyosumi. Given the exposition towards Teru's playstyle given here, any non-informed Saki viewer would almost certainly be lost/lacking in terms of background and pre-established information if they merely proceeded to the next Saki season without ever watching Achiga.

Not to mention that one of Achiga or Senriyama/Shindouji (with by far the edge to Achiga) will unconditionally be showing up in those Finals as well. The extent of characterization given to these other teams is much more than could have been covered in some short OVAs.

Achiga's problem is not that it spent too long on "irrelevant" material, but that it didn't spend enough. Initially at the start of this adaptation people were expecting Achiga-hen to run as a two-cour series (frankly, with only three episodes left to cover the rest of Shiraitodai's/Achiga's Semi-finals, it is still clear that ideally Achiga-hen could have definitely used those extra episodes). Unfortunately, as it's eventually become clear, that would have been pretty hopelessly impossible.
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Old 2012-08-07, 08:56   Link #1964
Akuma Kinomoto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sol Falling View Post
The point is that Teru cannot really be called on any level an "original" or "independent" aspect of Achiga. Teru (and by extension, Shiraitodai) are the unmistakeable final bosses of the main Saki storyline and one of the chief functions Achiga-hen achieved has been fleshing them out in preview of their impending clash in the Finals with Kiyosumi. Given the exposition towards Teru's playstyle given here, any non-informed Saki viewer would almost certainly be lost/lacking in terms of background and pre-established information if they merely proceeded to the next Saki season without ever watching Achiga.
You're misunderstanding me. Out of all the characters from Saki, I feel Teru is one of the few returning characters who viewers won't get lost on even if they hadn't watched the original series. Actually, Teru might be more of a character in Achiga-hen than in the first anime for the reasons you listed.

However, I question the franchise's move to develop a major character in what is supposedly supplementary material. Now, there might be a valid point in saying Achiga-hen can't stand on its own but I'm one of those types who holds an original series (Saki) by itself unless we're dealing with a sequel. Maybe Team Achiga and Team Senriyama's story would have worked better as flashbacks in the final round of the next "true" Saki season; the other teams in Achiga-hen certainly didn't get much development anyway.
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Old 2012-08-07, 11:04   Link #1965
Myssa Rei
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Akito Kinomoto View Post
Hrm? I've noticed some apprehension from Saki in both shows regarding Teru but I'm not seeing any hints as to what estranged them. Obviously it should be majhong related but I'm clueless beyond that.
Triple_R+ is speaking with a bit of hindsight here, after he and I conversed a bit concerning the comparisons between the manga and airing versions of Achiga-hen. There are nuances that are more obvious when one knows both, and I just pointed out segments in the manga that could be seen as "cues".

And I'm also of the opinion that there's no way one could flesh out the bracket that Shiraitodai was in with a "few" OVAs. The viewers had to come to grips with just how much of a threat Shiraitodai really is, and this can only be done by having them utterly CRUSH a character that viewers could consider a serious threat previously (in this case Toki, and how she ran away with a massive lead over Achiga). Teru did that, and more, to Toki.

The latter girl trounced the protagonists of the show almost too easily because she could see into the future, and STILL couldn't stop the elder Miyanaga alone.
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Old 2012-08-07, 12:54   Link #1966
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Originally Posted by Myssa Rei View Post
And I'm also of the opinion that there's no way one could flesh out the bracket that Shiraitodai was in with a "few" OVAs. The viewers had to come to grips with just how much of a threat Shiraitodai really is, and this can only be done by having them utterly CRUSH a character that viewers could consider a serious threat previously (in this case Toki, and how she ran away with a massive lead over Achiga). Teru did that, and more, to Toki.
Season 1. Episode 20. The very first few minutes. That's all you need to know.
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Old 2012-08-07, 13:24   Link #1967
vampko
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At first I felt like this, but somehow someway, within the thralls of the final episodes, Achiga just grew on me tremendously.

I can't explain it, but that's what happened. Teru started to lose my interest, and Kuro was suddenly the center of my attention.

I also don't think it's fair to call them all 'unrecognizable from eachother'. I'll admit I mixed up the bowling girl and that other girl often enough, but that's just because they look like clones almost o_o

But, Shizune always stood out strong from the rest for me.

I will say that they gave perhaps too much focus on Senriyama. Although I've heard the manga does this too.

This IS a case where I think the studio should have taken some liberties with things to liven it up. As I hear the manga has pretty much the same faults as the anime.
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Old 2012-08-07, 17:20   Link #1968
Myssa Rei
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Season 1. Episode 20. The very first few minutes. That's all you need to know.
Yes, but those were technically mooks, and don't really count.
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Old 2012-08-07, 18:59   Link #1969
Triple_R
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Akito Kinomoto View Post
Hrm? I've noticed some apprehension from Saki in both shows regarding Teru but I'm not seeing any hints as to what estranged them. Obviously it should be majhong related but I'm clueless beyond that.
Admittedly, what I picked up on are subtle little things that are probably easy to miss. Then there's also what Myssa Rei wrote.

Teru showing some degree of concern over Toki's welfare suggests that Teru is not really all that bad of a person (in spite of what the original Saki anime might lead you to believe).

On the other hand, we have Saki being frightened to death at the idea of simply watching Teru play a match, live.

Taken together, this suggests to me that Saki feels some degree of responsibility over the estrangement from her sister, and that Teru likely has at least an understandable reason for being upset with Saki (obviously Teru is upset with her, or she wouldn't go so far as to even deny that she has a sister).

My broader theory was a bit more complex than that, but I think that this alone shows how certain Teru and Saki moments in Achiga-hen can provide some added subtle hints to what lead to their sibling estrangement.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Myssa Rei View Post
Yes, but those were technically mooks, and don't really count.
Plus, there's the whole "Show, Don't Tell" thing. It's much more compelling to watch Teru totally dominate her way through an entire match with named and developed competitors than to simply see the aftermath of her trouncing a few unnamed victims.

Does Batman look more impressive when he hands over random thugs to the police, or when he goes a few rounds with The Joker, Two-Face, and The Riddler and manages to defeat them all?
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Old 2012-08-10, 06:12   Link #1970
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Me: 2 units incoming, there they are!
Requiem-x: Alright, lets...kill... WOAH!

Me: Isn't it too... 00-ish? One of them is. And shouldn't it be 2 months away and NOT closer?

Requiem-x: Lets not care about that and- UWAH!! *Shot from far by 1 of the guardian units.*

Me: REQUIEM!!! Great now I have to call night_sentinel.
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Old 2012-08-12, 00:26   Link #1971
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Toki: Tiger-san, isn't it not good to torture little animals?
Teru: Didn't you come here on your own, little rabbit?
Toki: .......
Teru: May I eat you?
Toki: !?
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Old 2012-08-12, 00:43   Link #1972
Kyuu
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And the question here is: Where is Ryuuka?
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Old 2012-08-12, 02:00   Link #1973
Scarletknive
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And the question here is: Where is Ryuuka?
Looking for the little lost rabbit while the tiger is trying to eat her. *Beam Rifle'd*

You come with me to the manga thread. We can discuss something there.

Me: Lets eat Ice kachang shall we.
*Toki eats a big portion of Ice kachang in one shot*
Toki: My head hurts...
Me: O_O Don't gulp most of it in one shot.

ETA: 2 months 1 week 5 days to 2 character songs release. *Double Beam Rifle'd*
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Old 2012-08-12, 02:16   Link #1974
Kyuu
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Looking for the little lost rabbit while the tiger is trying to eat her. *Beam Rifle'd*

You come with me to the manga thread. We can discuss something there.
Oh lordy
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Old 2012-08-12, 15:13   Link #1975
Midonin
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I was going to deliver the news of Toki and Ryuuka character songs materializing, but it appears I was too late.
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Old 2012-08-13, 09:20   Link #1976
night_sentinel
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Hey guys look at what I've found!
More Saki pro card collectibles. This time its Kokaji-pro!


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Old 2012-08-13, 10:33   Link #1977
Sol Falling
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Hey guys look at what I've found!
More Saki pro card collectibles. This time its Kokaji-pro!


Reposting cursory translation from the manga thread; total Kokaji ownage, lol.

Here's the data provided in the description at the bottom:
Undefeated within the country. Eternal Title "7 Crown" (or "Peerless 7", something like that). Number 2 ranking in the world. Voted every year in the Ebisu Jidai (I'm guessing that's a national league) as league MVP.
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Old 2012-08-13, 11:11   Link #1978
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Eternal worrywort given her default expression too.


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Old 2012-08-14, 01:46   Link #1979
tarajis
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Hey guys look at what I've found!
More Saki pro card collectibles. This time its Kokaji-pro!



Pleasing Chickens should be changed to Scary Chickens...


It had been more than a month now and still no news about the last three episodes... it's like the anime was stomped... I hope the culprit is not an armrest...
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Old 2012-08-14, 01:51   Link #1980
Om Nerabdator
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.....i wasnt paying much attention to this series after ep3 i really wanted to \see that end bit ^^

But did this series get kind of choppy like 1 episode was coming out a mth or was it just me? or the subbers? is this even finish yet
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