Day 1 – There’s No Crying in Anime: The Returning – The 12 Days of Anime

I was so happy with the posts I wrote last year for the 12 Days of Anime with zero preparation on my part that I decided to see if lightning will strike a second time. Throw in feeling rusty-ish with blog writing and I’m sure this will end well 🙂 .

One of the best ways I’ve found to continue enjoying the watching of anime is to have one mind-blowingly awesome anime among the rotation. Two or three would be better but one starts risking their brain melting from the overload at that point. For much of 2012, 2013, and then into 2014 Hunter x Hunter owned that spot; but, it eventually had to end and for Fall of 2014 I suddenly needed that something awesome. Yuki Yuna is a Hero and Rage of Bahamut: Genesis shocked me with how easily they immediately worked together to get me over Hunter x Hunter ending; the fall season also saw the seed of their successor begin to sprout – Shirobako.

By the winter of 2015 Shirobako had all the pieces in place to dominate it’s competition and it did with the seeming ease all true masterworks display. With an absolute desire to minimize how often I use these 12 Days of Anime to talk about Shirobako I’m going to pick one of my favorite moments for today – the moment that left me a quivering, blubbering ball of tears and snot. (Cute picture, right 🙂 .)

[Cthuko] Shirobako - 22 [720p H264 AAC][300FB3E1].mkv_snapshot_13.22_[2015.03.24_00.47.20]In the second half of Shirobako we saw four of the five main focus characters making solid progress in attaining their dream careers. The sole unlucky one was the want-to-be vocal actress, Shizuka Sakaki, who turned to drinking alcohol in her darkened apartment and talking to the television as a means to console herself. I’d honestly decided they were going to leave her story there as a hook for the second season (which is still not been green-lit, I’m just saying) until a last minute character was created to resolve a problem with the plot of the anime that the other four of five characters were working on. (Yes, an anime about making an anime.)

The implications for Shizuka Sakaki were obvious but, even still, it was always possible that I was hoping for something too much and then reading too much into this development. I tried to hold my expectations in check and mentally prepare myself for all the possible outcomes.

[HorribleSubs] Shirobako - 23 [720p].mkv_snapshot_22.50_[2015.03.20_21.13.11]These preparations proved inadequate. That moment when she was indeed picked to voice this character and confidently began delivering her lines I just completely lost it. The reaction by Miyamori in the anime was tame compared to me; in addition to the quivering blubbering ball of tears and snot there was a whole bunch of fist pumping and celebrating that one can only get away with by making sure no one can hear you or see you.

Incidentally, it really says something about the professionalism of Miyamori with how muted she was able to keep her reaction to. (As an aside, can you tell I like asides, Miyamori showed a lot more integrity in not trying to help her close friend land a speaking role than I think I could muster.)

I don’t know if I can say this is my favorite anime moment from 2015 or even the “best” (however you define that term) moment but it was definitely the moment the most resonated emotionally with me from 2015.


3 thoughts on “Day 1 – There’s No Crying in Anime: The Returning – The 12 Days of Anime”

  1. One of my minor frustrations from this year was that I didn’t find the time to fit Shirobako into my backlog viewing, and this post makes me regret that even more. I even had it in my Crunchyroll queue at one point this summer, but it just ended up sitting there until I took it off again. It’s a high priority for next year, though.

    I think out of the two dozen or so 2015 shows that I watched, the emotional high point of the year for me was the climax of Euphonium. That show had me so invested in almost its whole cast of characters by then that I was right on the edge of my seat with them waiting for the final results to be announced.


  2. @WingKing: Sorry for spoiling it for you. Shirobako does start a bit slow – they have to cover enough of the quirks of making anime that the rest of the show has the proper context, I remember not being 100% sure I was going to continue watching it until episode 5. The upcoming winter season looks like a pretty weak one with the heavy prevalence of sequels, there will probably be time to fit it in.

    I’m hoping for the time this winter to get to the anime I really wanted to get to this year – Legend of the Galactic Heroes. I’ve heard so much about it, I decided I needed to see it already and was going to make it my summer project but that didn’t happen.

    I really liked Euphonium but I also strongly feel like I need to see it again before I can really properly judge it. I do remember really liking the cast of Euphonium and I hope we get to see more of them, though I’m almost positive I’m going to give Shirobako my best cast award when (hopefully) I do my year in review posts.


  3. No worries. In my experience a scene with real impact still has an impact even if I know it’s coming – sometimes even more so if I’m anticipating it.

    It’s possible I could get to Shirobako this winter. Aside from continuing Gundam IBO there are only three shows next season on my “must see” list (Haruchika, Erased, and Phantom World). I usually carry 6-8 per season, so that leaves plenty of time for backlog watching. OTOH, the DVDs that I’ve bought without getting around to watching them yet are starting to pile up – and I just added another half-dozen shows thanks to the RightStuf holiday sale – so I’d really like to put a dent in that stack first before I go back to more streaming stuff.

    “I really liked Euphonium but I also strongly feel like I need to see it again before I can really properly judge it.” Yes, same here. I have Eupho slightly ahead of Hyouka (which I just finished) in my KyoAni pecking order, but it’s very close between those and I could easily see myself flipping them if I were to re-watch both.


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