Musoukakyo ~ A Summer Day’s Dream
All the cool kids are blogging the new Studio Maikaze animation project so I figured I would too. I loved every minute of it. You know, I wish I could type an original review about this but I would just be parroting every other person I’ve seen so far who has written anything at all about the OVA after having seen it. So because I’m lazy and because I don’t feel like parroting people, I’m just going to redirect you here for a spoiler-ed review and here for a non-spoiler-ed review. I couldn’t have said it better if I had typed it up myself, and reflects my opinions pretty well. I will disagree with one thing though, I felt that Sakuya’s portrayal in the anime was more true to canon than most doujins are. But, to loosely quote a poster on the Shrinemaiden forum, I have truly underestimated the power of fanon on the fanbase. As much as I love the knife-wielding badass Sakuya who acts cool and steely as we’ve seen in The Maid and the Bloody Watch of Fate (among other things), it must be said that Sakuya is a maid before a fighter to Remilia and serving her ojou-sama tea is what she does, so I find that Maikaze characterised her perfectly. After all, when you first encounter her in Embodiment of Scarlet Devil she only fights to protect Remilia’s peace and quiet, and doesn’t act aggressive or anything at all. She seems more concerned that the cleaning isn’t getting anywhere. True her personality does seem a touch more violent in Perfect Cherry Blossom and Imperishable Night but in these situations matters are truly “dire” (as dire as anything can be in Touhou) for the Scarlet Devil Mansion and so it’s understandable that anyone would be a bit more on edge. She’s not about to go carving things up at the drop of a pin though. That said, I’m sure Maikaze had considered how best to characterise Sakuya and I imagine it was a hard decision whether to bend a little to fanon or stay true to the original.
I think they got that particular balance right. The OVA didn’t feel overloaded with memes and inside jokes for the community, and they concentrated more on getting the overall look and feel of a typical Touhou game instead. The infamous bookshelf, of course, brought a smile to my face and my brother, who is learning Japanese, was kind enough to help me translate a few of the titles enough so that I could understand them, which only added to the humour. I also appreciated the subtitles because a part of me deep inside hoped and prayed that they would…and my prayers were answered! It’s always nice to have the creators do it because fansubs may occasionally translate things in ways the creators did not intend. That and I don’t know how many people would be willing to sub an animated Touhou project – it took long enough for Touhou Project Side Story to be subbed but…let’s not talk about that.
There is no Touhou Project Side Story.
In before Type-MOON meme mutates.