Amanda Liu October 21, 2007
Summary: Continuing off from the cliffhanger last time, Ayumi punches the creepy stalker in the face. Mr. Stalker quickly leaves the scene, leaving Shion alone to cry over the traumatic experience. Ayumi offers Shion a handkerchief but looks away when Shion looks him in the eye.
The police are alerted of this and decide to send a guy to watch over Shion. Nevertheless, the papparazzi starttaking pictures of Shion and her family and of course Mr. Stalker cuts out the newspaper photo and adds it to his stalker collection. Then there’s a couple of quick scene cut to Saori, Hisatani and Shion herself celebrate Shion becoming a pro (which is what the papparazzi were for) , Ayumi working part time in a different (noodle shop?) restaurant with the same newspaper article, and these newspapers guys who plan to target Shion for their next big article .
We switch scenes again to Shion powning her foster father at shougi and him telling Shion that she’s improved. He’s also noticed that Shion’s shougi style is to bend the pieces to her own will. Mr. Foster Father asks Shion why she plays shougi and she simply answers “because it’s fun.” Mr. Foster Father says that someday Shion will truly despise her opponents with heart and soul while she’s playing and it won’t just be for fun. Nevertheless, Mr. Foster Father gives Shion his old fan to use for her upcoming match.
We switch to another scene of Ayumi powning his opponent and wondering if her opponent is even serious. Saori also powns this old lady who happily accepts her defeat commenting that she can’t keep up with young people. After Ayumi stares at a poster advertising the monetary prize, Saori stops and tells Ayumi that she can find no record of Ayumi whatsoever. While Ayumi mentally notes that he needs to defeat Saori, he starts making up a lie about he was trained in a town dojo and blah blah blah. Saori comments that Ayumi has a very “vulgar” stlye while Ayumi comments that it’s the opposite of Saori’s “kind” shougi, which forces the opponent to withdraw.
That night, Saori goes up to her Shougi sensei and is practically in tears when she always thought her “kind” style of shougi was good. She begs the teacher to make her stronger and whatever shounen crap. The next day, Shion gets a message that basically says “You play shougii, you die.” Shion and her foster mom decide not to tell Mr. Foster Dad so he won’t freak out. Later THAT night, Mr. Foster dad’s all chummy because he won a match thanks to Shion’s inspiration. He begs to see Shion’s “cute face as she’s sleeping” while Shion is really having another nightmare about her past and how Mr. Murderer told her to “forget words”.
Shion wakes up, in tears, and realizes that he’s the guy that killed her parents. She also questions if that’s her true motive to play shougii-to discover her parent’s murderer. After all, the only clue that the murderer left was the shougi piece of the king. The next day Saori and Ayumi find out about the threats Shion got and freaks out. Some random lady biotches on why everyone cares about Shion so much and Saori says that’s because Shion speaks through her shougi and everyone wants to hear.
Lastly, a number of people were able to watch Shion and her
opponent’s match in person. Unfortunately, one of the people that attended was an annoying reporter lady who asks Shion if she’s willing to die just for playing shougi. Shion doesn’t respond and the three main “girls” continue to play as Mr. Stalker is STILL outside the building.
Impressions: Oh my god, it really does look like that all Studio Deen cares about is STALKER, STALKER, and STALKER. Jeez, are they on Higurashi high or something? For all you non-manga readers, the stalker was never even able to TOUCH Shion and all Ayumi did was say “Hey” and Mr. Stalker pretty much went away. This really changes the theme of the series because in the manga I felt that this was more of a character dorama series with the main emphasis on Shion and her strong personality. The anime is like “okay this is what happens when you watch too much Kodomo no Jikan, creepy pedos start stalking random little girls.”
I’m also didn’t really like Shion’s scared look when the reporter asked if Shion was ready to die for shougii. Even if she was able to calmly think about the game afterwards, I felt it would be a lot better if Shion would have just looked at the reporter as if saying “WTF? You’re retarded” and continued on. Oh well, if they don’t screw up next week’s scenes it’ll show why I think Shion’s one of the most admirable protagonists of all.
I hope you took note of the three different styles the “girls” have. Shion basically has a calm style where she manuevers things to her will without really causing any trouble. Ayumi basically just attacks and powns while Saori’s style seems polite but really just toys with the opponent until they give up. Shougi is not the easiest game in the world but if you just get what style each girl has it’ll be a lot easier. To be honest, I’ve seen a lot of people freak out and say “OMG I don’t know anything about shougi blah blah blah” but if you just know the playing styles of the characters and know who’s winning you’re fine for this series. Seriously, it’s not that hard to get.
This is definitely not going to be close to my favorite episode of the twelve planned for this series, but it’s a solid one. Animation-wise this series is declining downhill which makes me wonder if Studio Deen is still in debt after Kenshin or something. There were a couple changes from the manga (mostly on stalker issues) but besides that it’s pretty good. While the BGM totally flew by me without notice, I’ve grown fond of the ED theme now and the OP keeps on getting stuck in my head for some strange reason. And lastly, yes I know I’m note the first one to write this but it took me forever to get the episode due to torrent issues (and I don’t have WiNNY or whatever that p2p program is). I can’t wait for next week’s episode. Now I’m off to write an essay -_-.
Oh and on another random note, I have a strange feeling that Saori has feelings for her shougi sensei. I have no proof yet (I did not get far in the manga) but it’s just a hunch. Your opinions?
Tags: Shion no Ou
Category: Episode Synopsis
I believe myself~