Winter 2007 Anime Season: Kyoshiro to Towa no Sora

January 15th, 2007

As I mentioned last week in my review, the second volume of the Kannazuki no Miko anime, makes a nice lead-in to a brand new anime this winter 2007 season.

Well…let me rephrase that. A new anime series.

I’m being a tad precious about the way I put it, because in reality, there is *nothing* new about Kyoshiro to Towa no Sora (“Kyoshiro and the Eternal Sky,” if I’m not misreading the kanji.) This is the Kaishaku equivalent of Tsubasa Chronicle, a revisiting and reshaping of already-been- there characters, ideas and concepts.

The main story will follow Kuu (whose name in Japanese means “empty,” but is written with the same character as “sky”) and her adventures as she’s thrust in just about the same exact kind of story as Himeko was in KnM. That is, all of a sudden two things invade her boring little world – a boy who looks just like the prince she’s been seeking since childhood arrives and molests her, and secondly, giant robots attack her. Kuu is just as passive and as much a non-entity as Himeko, so her reactions are along the lines of “Huh? What’s happening? I’m confused.” The prince look-alike, Kyoshiro, is a new transfer to the school and clearly has a lot of information about what’s going on that he has yet to share.

Additionally, in the first episode we meet Kozue, who is pretty much exactly the same character as Himeko’s best friend in KnM, only slightly butchier, and Oogami Souma has morphed into Oogami Jin – which is basically the same heavy-duty name, only different. Instead of being a rival for Kuu, Oogami leads this year’s meme du année, which is to say, an uber-cool knightly order of froods. The voice actors and actresses for all the KnM clones are the same as they were in the original.

We retain the same fetishy kind of bad-guy thing that happened in KnM, as well – our first attacker is the stereotypical annoying catgirl, nyan.

In episode two, we meet this series’ reincarnations of Chikane and Himeko, named Kaon and Himiko. Chikane/Kaon remains competent, cool and intelligent. She explains to both Kuu and the audience, that she (and the catgirl, and Kyoshiro’s familiar Setsuna, and a host of other characters to come including one voiced by my own beloved Ogata Megumi) are “Absolute Angels” and they fight…erm, for some reason. We are also given a nod to another Kaishaku story, Koutetsu Tenshi Kurumi, known here as Steel Angel Kurumi. The Absolute Angels are the so-far ultimate expression of the same technology that created the Steel Angels. And just as useful, as far as I can tell. But I digress. Unfortunately for us or Kuu, Kaon and Himiko this time are on the side of BAD – in this case, the evil mistress of the evil school for evil girls, who is already on my personal list of Evil Psychotic Lesbians.

All this leads to the two things that make Episode 2 worth watching. Kaon, as an Angel, needs to draw energy (mana) from a human in order to survive. Himiko and Kaon are obviously actually in love, but in order to protect Himiko from the repercussions, Kaon refuses her mana, until Himiko insists and kisses Kaon. It’s a very shiny kiss. I mean that literally. With sparkles and stuff. Kaon heals, but with Himiko in her arms, can’t effectively fight Setsuna, Kyoshiro’s Absolute Angel, as she re-kidnaps Kuu. Once again, we see Chikane/Kaon suffer from unhappy fate, as evil Headmistress Mika blames Himiko and takes her off for person punishment. Insert salacious, knowing laughter here.

The second worthwhile thing is something Kuu thinks, as Himiko and Kaon kiss. She thinks that she’s never seen anything like this in real life, but she’s seen books like this on Kozue’s shelf. That made me laugh out loud, it really did. In case we’re all deaf, dumb and blind, Kuu goes on a bit about how beautiful secret love between women is, and all that. Got it, we got it. Thanks for beating us with the yuri stick – we might not notice otherwise.

Okay, so Kaon and Himiko are a small side story, and in order to find out what happens to them, we’re going to have to put up with Kuu and Kyoshiro. But hey, Ogata Megumi as yet another Angel is da bomb and it’ll be a short anime like KnM was, so I’m down with it.

It’s crap, my friends. But we’ll watch it and we’ll like it. Like cod-liver oil anime. And we’ll say it was good for us, too.

Ratings:(What were my ratings for KnM? Everything’s the same, only different.)

Art – 7
Story – Ditto, 5.
Characters – 6
Yuri – 8
Service – 4 (bra/panties, excessive bathing, some light molestation)

Overall – 7

If Kaon and Himiko have a chance, and MO is cool as Waltesia, then we might get as high as an 8.

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13 Responses

  1. neo_hrtgdv says:

    I think I’ll wait a while to get this anime even when it seems interesting, I’ll be much busier with Venus versus Virus ^-^

    Still, I never thought we’d get more Chikane and Himeko, much less evil ones (maybe a lot of people liked the evil Chikane)

  2. nae says:

    This actually works quite well as a parody of KnM and Kaishaku’s other works, only that would be giving them too much credit for self-reflexivity. Hmm.

  3. ashes says:

    Actually, with all the statements being made about the KnM fandumb(being well…..dumb), I’m surprised that you expect us to sense shoujo-ai even if there is girl/girl kissing.

    My favorite thing about KnM was the music and I’m somewhat glad to hear that KTS has the same composer, though I worry that she didn’t really write a new score(just copy the old one).

  4. Hafl says:

    This is the first time I absolutely agree with your opinion.

    I just don’t know whether the mechas are better or worse. At least this time there is some kind of explanation.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Holy hell. I’ve never seen anything so wildly unrestrained in it’s cliche’d, overwrought shoujo drama. I’m in awe! I mean, this makes KnM look like freaking Noam Chomsky. He plays violin in a forest glade? He canters around on horseback at the slightest provocation? Wow. They’re really going all out.

    The Chikane/Himeko relationship is, of course, the most interesting thing about it. Chikane is still much cooler than her male counterparts, and once again, seem to be bringing the lesbian angst. Hooray! Fangirlism will make me watch anything.

  6. And yet, it is not actually shoujo at all. KTS, like all Kaishaku stories, runs in a guy’s magazine.

  7. Senbei says:

    The parallels to previous material has already been stated, so I won’t beat a dead horse (though I really wish someone would beat his horse into submission). What I don’t understand about this series is that Ayanokoji, a person Kuu has just met, gets all creepy and rips off her shirt in front of a group of classmates… and in the next scene she lets herself be swept away by his fetishist egalitarian equestrianism…? Does the occidental King Arthur complex override the Japanese culturally embedded sense of shame and modesty?

  8. See, this is what I mean. If it had been Kaon who did it (as Chikane did) would anyone ever question her behavior? But because it’s a guy…

    I think the best course for us all is to remove our brains before watching. Save wear and tear.

  9. Favourite thing about this series: the continuity. Without fail, there was a bath/shower sequence in every episode.

    Favourite lesbian: Mika. Hell hath no fury like a lesbian scorned. And scorned. And scorned.

    Favourite couple: Kaon and Himiko, only on the basis that they seemed to be driven into more suck than in their previous incarnation.

    Favourite male character: Kazuya.

    Favourite female character: Kyoshiro.

    Favourite cat-girl: …

    Favourite character overall: the horse.

  10. Sistine100 says:

    Ok it says this,
    That is, all of a sudden two things invade her boring little world – a boy who looks just like the prince she’s been seeking since childhood arrives and molests her.
    But when does he do that? He didn’t do it right away did he? that would be reallly weird.

  11. @Sistine100 – Kyo pretty much shows up and molests her. The reson why is not explained, but it become apparent after a while. The reason why he does it that way is because he’s a jerk.

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