Leadup to Tri Week 9- Engaged to the Unidentified

MarcFBR

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Short and light 12 episodes this time

Engaged to the Unidentified

Not sure there are any real content warnings this time. Some mild ecchi jokes, but the show itself is pretty clean as I recall (which is amusing in and of itself with how big of a pervert one of the characters is.)

Subbed on Hulu for free- http://www.hulu.com/engaged-to-the-unidentified
Subbed on Crunchyroll for free- http://www.crunchyroll.com/engaged-to-the-unidentified

Back to the ultra fluffy comedy (people seemed to like those better when I posted them anyways.)

Just a light character comedy here. Fits the stereotype of the 'cute girls doing cute things' 'slice of life' genre, but this one has a small bit of plot running through it.

Not much to discuss about this one. I just find it amusing and fun to watch and think others will also.

Only one Digimon connection this time. The character designer and chief animation designer did key animation for 02 and Tamers earlier in his career.


Feel free to post as you want and to make any suggestions regarding how I made the thread. Improvements can always be made.

May decide to put doing these on the backburner until Tri is about to start with one or two weeks of shows from the people working on Tri. Will continue doing them week by week if commenting picks up more this week. While people have asked me to continue doing it elsewhere, it isn't really worth the time if people aren't posting and discussing the shows.

Previous Threads
Leadup to Tri Week 1- Haganai
Leadup to Tri Weeks 2 and 3- A Certain Magical Index
Leadup to Tri Weekend Movie- Lupin The Third: Green Vs Red
Leadup to Tri Week 3(ish)- High School DxD
Leadup to Tri Week 4- Buso Renkin
Leadup to Tri Week 5- Tenchi Muyo!
Leadup to Tri Week 6- Ben-To
Leadup to Tri Week 7- Maken-Ki!
Leadup to Tri Week 8- Full Metal Panic!

No Youtube episodes to embed... so have this OP that Toho uploaded.

 

Theigno

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so after pretty much skipping two animes after (one making me uncomfortable and having a pretty busy week when it was time for the other one) I plan sticking with this series to the end, especially since it only has 12 episodes. Today I watched the first 3...

Episode 1
I really enjoyed how this first episode was pretty much every character going "what the hell" about the premise of the show. The title and the mention of being eligible for marriage at 16 within the first minute already made me guess that it would be a large theme but I didn't expect the show to start off that... "bluntly" I guess. "This guy will now live with you and you will marry him" that was kinda funny with how absurd it was and as I already mentioned our main heroine Kobeni's reaction to that was just hilarious. Then there's Hakuya the fiance... He also doesn't really seem like he's really much into the marriage thing but he just seems to be going along with it and in general he's a very passive kind of guy that doesn't talk much and spends his time sitting or standing around and staring into space. Pretty boring but I don't actually really mind, in fact I can actually pretty much identify with this guy since, well I can be exactly like that in Real life. Also his unchanging expression deep voice and hairstyle remind me very much of a character in another Anime I'm watching right now, Decim from "Death Parade" except that Decim judges the souls of dead people and Hakuya... doesn't (as far as I can tell). Despite seeming completely stoic he shows a somewhat protective side and at the end of the episode when Kobeni compares herself to her popular sister he seems to just instinctively know what she thinks about... so there might be a bit of chemistry here.
His kid sister Mashiro is a far more colorful character despite just being a child she seems to think that she has some kind of responsibility to test Kobeni would make a good wife. She tries to be critical but it doesn't seem like she'll find too much to complain about. More interesting are her interactions with Kobeni's sister, Benio who seems to be really into lolis fore some reason,
One of the weirdest things so far (excluding the whole arranged marriage theme which seems to stem from Kobeni's grandfather being a really old fashioned patriarch)is the way Mashiro simply transfers into a highschool despite being grade school age. At first I thought she might be one of those young genius characters but it turns out her family just has lots of influcence. Of course that doesn't really answer how she is supposed to keep up with the rest of her class...

Another interesting thing: Kobeni has the classic "no Idea what happened in my childhood" syndrome but this time we get some kind explanation in form of her mentioning having had some kind of "accident" which might later become important I guess.

Episode 2
One of the problens with Hakuya being that incredibly passive type of character is that all other characters don't really have to try hard to steal his spot light. Overall this episode seemed to be way more about Mashiro and Benio than about the main couple of the series although we get some hints like Mashiro mentioning that he can "finally" live with Kobeni that seem to imply that he really is more interested in the marriage than I would have suspected in episode 1. And he really likes to build buildings out of sticks only to have them shatter every time someone opens the door. The accident from a few years ago does indeed get mentioned again and it seems Hakuya was also involved and saved her but he doesn't actually want to talk about it. could it be possible that he feels that he should marry her out of a sense of guilt for whatever happened back then? It was also mentioned that he got hurt back then, would it be possible that something happened to his right eye and that's the reason we never see it?
The episode really plays up Mashiro childishness with her denial when it comes to her food preferences and having her take things like aliens at face value.
One interesting thing was a sequence of Kobeni's memories about her visit to the mountains slowly coming back, the most significant part seem to be the sillhuette of what seems to be a black cat. possibly symbolism for something that will come later or connected to the accident?
One of the highlights of the second part of this episode has to be Kobeni's rant about the inconveniences of having big breasts as well as the introduction of the vice student president the only persons who seems to be able to hold Benio in check.


Episode 3
Hakuya sure is an interesting goalkeeper. it's more psychological warfare than sports but it works. He also revealed a kind of Naive side of himself when he actually believed that Kobeni would literally be carried away on a kite (Also what's he doing giving presents to his teacher and what's in the box?) But what the hell is with Mashiro's uniform, she has been to that school for two weeks by now and no one thought about shortening the sleeves of her clothes so they actually fit. The way she ate the cookies during her stay at the student council was really cute.
The shopping scene with Kobeni and Hakuya was really kinda surreal. Like what actually happened when he went offscreen, did he get into a Bento Brawl or what? and why was he sitting all depressed on a bench at the end?
Also holy shit that was some detailed stick temple...
And now that Kobeni's mom also got one those mysterious gift boxes I really want to know what's inside. Hakuya and Mashiro also get a letter from home. but while the contents don't seem notable to me (it just seems like they've got some pretty nagging parents) what seems weird about it was that it's aparrently came with an arrow? was it shot to them? who would send letters like that?
The biggest plot development was undoubtedly Kobeni finding out about the accident that happened many years ago. She seemed to be aware that some accident had ahappened before but completely forgot Hakuya's involvement in it... and it results in her feeling guilty bout it. It has already been implied that Hakuya might also feel guilt about the accident so it will be interesting to how those two will work it out...

Oh and I just noticed: Hakuya is so uninteresting he isn't even in the opening except for the very last moment...
 

MarcFBR

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And now that Kobeni's mom also got one those mysterious gift boxes I really want to know what's inside.
There are various times in Japanese culture where it's deemed appropriate to give someone a gift for what is expected/already done as a show of respect/appreciation.

His style of giving it to them appears to be that of a businessman conducting business with someone rather than a more personal style gift if I remember my customs right. It would likely be a food item more common to where he lives that he was able to purchase locally (but that the giftee would be unlikely to purchase for themselves), since he apparently didn't come with them.

Oh and I just noticed: Hakuya is so uninteresting he isn't even in the opening except for the very last moment...
I noticed that after the first time or two of watching the OP. Was amusing to realize he wasn't there until the end.
 

TMS

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Started this tonight and watched as far as Theigno did (was going to stop at episode 2, but I wanted to read his whole post). I'm glad that I'm not the only one commenting this time.

I'm really liking the show so far. Light, funny, and cute. On the whole it reminds me of Azumanga Daioh, right down to the preteen high schooler. I like the colorful aspect of the show, the UFO/UMA theme, and the odd scribbles that pop up sometimes. So far the characters seem pretty likable. Mashiro is a pretty fun character. My favorite thing about her is the way her ponytail moves according to her mood like an actual tail. Even Hakuya, as Theigno noted, is relatable to introverted viewers like myself, and what few personality traits he does display are on the endearing side. And that throwback to Ben-To was hilarious.

On the whole, I'm looking forward to the rest of the series, and am almost a little sad that I'm already a quarter of the way through it.

Hakuya and Mashiro also get a letter from home. but while the contents don't seem notable to me (it just seems like they've got some pretty nagging parents) what seems weird about it was that it's aparrently came with an arrow? was it shot to them? who would send letters like that?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hpm6UWyU5IM
 

Theigno

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So I watched Episode 4 today... and suddenly something big dawned on me. I've got this big theory in my head now and I feel unable to watch any further episodes before I've written it down completely (spoilered of course for anyone who's still at 3).
At first I wasn't really sure how serious I should take it and holy shit I'm gonna feel stupid if it turns out to be a red herring but the more I think about it the more sense it makes. So anyway, after watching episode four I'm am quite certain (to about 80%) that Hakuya and his sister probably too
are some kind of werewolves.

The first really weird thing about Hakuya was of course the way he suddenly took off when he thought he made Kobeni sad. Even for a weird and funny series like this the kind of elaborate effect when he disappeared as well as multiple characters actually pointing out how abnormally fast it happened made it seem much more than just a throwaway joke, something the audience it supposed to recognize as weird.
From that point I went backwards through the episodes. When Kobeni is sick in bed and looking at Hakuya she states that he reminds her of a "large dog" and what's even more telling is Mashiro's shocked reaction to that statement. I mean that kind of comparison would normally just be something weird but her expression gave it the feeling of "she figured it out!" and she sounded almost relieved when she noted that it was just something she said in her sleep (after that they wanted to redirect the audience's attention to Kobeni's breasts but that didn't work on me lol). Going back a small bit further we got Kobeni's fever dream about the cliff she fell down years ago. We know Hakuya jumped after her but he never really appeared in any of those flash backs but now we suddenly have her remembering grabbing something soft and it looks pretty much like fur rather than hair on someone's head. So let's say Hakuya has control over his ability form he might have instinctively taken his wolf or dog form in order to protect her. This in turn made me rewatch the previous flash backs in episode 2. And now the silhouette made sense. I'm very much a cat person so at first the shape made me go "cat!" but now I'm pretty sure it's a wolf. And notice that the dark texture that fills the silhouette is the same as with the human silhouette of what is probably Hakuya we saw at the beginning of the first episode. So my guess that she actually saw him in his wolf form back then. This in turn could shed more light behind the motives of the arranged marriage: Because Kobeni saw Hakuya in his wolf form when she fell down the cliff or maybe even before it would be risk for Hakuya's family (who I'm just gonna guess are all werewolves too) because she would know their secret if she ever remembered what happened. So in order to minimize that risk of her leaking it to the public they want her to join the family.
Now back to episode 4... Mashiro states that Hakuya crossed mountains and valleys to get to this town in a way that makes it sound like he did it on foot using his super speed shown before. Of course she tries to clarify that they used a train but that was obviously a lie. So analyzing that scene a bit further, note that Mashiro doesn't include herself when she talks about crossing the valleys yet she also doesn't seem to have come with the train so that made me think Hakuya carried her. Even imagining him giving her a piggyback ride or something along those lines would be a bit weird but if he could take the form of a large wolf or dog she could just ride on his back.
About Mashiro being a werewolf... there's not much evidence for that but I've always found her hair kinda weird. The way it is framed and how it moves when Mashiro is startled for exampled makes it seem very much like some kind tail and not just human hair. I know that anime tends to do weird things with hair in general but in that case I'm pretty sure we were supposed to take it as a hint about her true nature.

And then of course the big (maybe even a bit too blunt) statement by mashiro along the lines of "our family isn't quite what she thinks" normally that would just means that there's one ore more eccentric uncle hanging around but when it's mentioned in anime... there's something big going on.

The last piece of evidence comes from the title of the show. "Engaged to the Unidentified" doesn't really make sense for the story when used in the conventional sense. I would have made sense if Kobeni suddenly lived with multiple guys without knowing who she's engaged to but as it stands Hakuya is pretty much "identified". I thought about how it could be about him being unidentified in the sense that we don't know much about his personality but it still didn't make 100% sense. But then we have the theme of episode 2 namely UFOs and more importantly UMAs. Because if Hakuya is werewolf the "unidentified" in the title could refer to him being such an "Unidentified Mysterious Animal" instead of being an unidentified person.
This would also make Mashiro's fear of aliens and other mythical creatures more believable because she actually knows that at least one of those creatures actually exists.
 

TMS

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Watched through episode 6 tonight. You know, Theigno, as soon as I read through the non-spoiler-tagged part of your post I knew what your theory would be. Sort of, anyway. My own guess,
having seen the first three episodes and that part of your post, was that Hakuya might have been an extraterrestrial - hence the anime's title, the predominance of space imagery in the opening, the bringing up of aliens, etc. After watching episode 4 I knew that I'd been a little off the mark.
After watching episode 5,
your theory was confirmed (though I don't think I'd term the beings "werewolves," myself). It was something of an anticlimax to have the mystery cleared up so soon. Anyway, it adds an interesting new aspect to the show. To some extent it took me by surprise, since the first three episodes gave no clear sign that fantasy would be involved in the series, apart from the weirdness generally found in any anime.

By the way, something that struck me last night but which I forgot to include in my first post is the amusing way that the relationship between Benio and Mashiro mirrors that of Sena and Kobato in Haganai. It's almost a perfect parallel.
 

MarcFBR

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Not my favorite part of the series, but one of the most amusing... Benio clearly going more and more insane as the series goes on.

And as for all the spoiler tags
close enough that I'd give it to you even though they aren't werewolves.
 

TMS

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Well, I finished the series and have watched both OVAs. Spoiler tags are limited to the OVAs now, since the week's over. The second half of the series was as enjoyable as the first, though it relied a little heavily on repeated misunderstandings. The OVAs were fun.
The first appears to confirm that the dog-people aren't the only UMAs out there. Still not as scary as Benio, though. I see some people have theorized that she might be an atavism descended from a member of Mitsumune family's species. Wonder if Mashiro will ever encounter real aliens.
The events of the final episode were properly dramatic, though there wasn't much of a real ending or conclusion to speak of, possibly because the manga is still ongoing. I wonder if there will be another anime eventually.
 
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