Monthly Archives: April 2014

Introduction to Touhou 53: Sekibanki

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“Look upon my head and despair!”

Though she looks like a normal woman to those around her, Sekibanki is a youkai who had snuck herself into the Human Village sometime during or prior to the chaos of Hopeless Masquerade, using her appearance to blend into local society.

Worked-up into a frenzy by the magic of Shinmyoumaru Sukuna’s mallet, a substantial number of youkai, including Sekibanki, rose up in revolt. Recent events in Gensokyo had put the Buddhist and Taoist factions at the forefront of human-youkai relations, but both parties remained silent as this crisis unfolded around them. Even Byakuren Hijiri, who presumably had the greatest inclination to maintain peace between humankind and its supernatural neighbors, failed to appear on the scene. One possible explanation for this nonintervention is that both the Buddhist and Taoist forces were exhausted from battling each other and Hata no Kokoro during Hopeless Masquerade. The other potential explanation is that the youkai residing in Myouren Temple also came under the mallet’s influence and required Byakuren’s full attention to stop.

Thus, the task fell to the usual pair of Reimu and Marisa, though the activity of rebellious youkai near the Scarlet Devil Mansion also prompted Sakuya to join in on the fight. Independently, these three heroines crushed the rebellion with their trademark brutality and Sekibanki was no exception. I’d assume she went back to living in the village once she got to taste the three course meal of pain.

“I never needed to cut off your neck at all.” – Sakuya

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The Nine Hells of Anime Episode 60: Kill la Kill

Cutie Honey meets Gurren Lagann as Studio Trigger explodes onto the television anime scene with the fan favorite Kill la Kill, which has even inspired the usual round of talk about saving anime with its combination of kickass music, charismatic eyebrows, and pink-haired meme machines. But does this high profile show live up to the hype or do its superpowered costumes come apart at the seams?

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Introduction to Touhou 52: Kokoro

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“I thought you were expressionless, but your personality is changing a mile a minute.” – Marisa

Hata no Kokoro is a menreiki youkai, an amalgamation of masks used in a certain performance art called Gigaku. The art in question has long since ceased existing in practice, but as we all know, it’s when things are forgotten in the real world that they have a habit of popping up in Gensokyo.

The menreiki are a subclass of tsukumogami, which are the supernatural extensions of tools or objects occupied by one of the countless Shinto deities. We’ve encountered one such tsukumogami in the past, the umbrella youkai Kogasa Tatara, and several other youkai within this category feature in the 14th main Touhou game: Double Dealing Character.
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The Nine Hells of Anime Episode 59: Gunpla Builders Beginning G

Fino and Ace use this glorified plastic model commercial as an excuse to reminisce about the old and new of Gundam. While Gunpla Builders Beginning G amounts to little more than a warmup for the far superior Gundam Build Fighters, it does deserve credit for being the origin of the world’s most dangerous Mobile Suit: The Bearguy.

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