[Ewen’s Corner] Nekomimi Days Review.

Another cross-post from Neko Machi, because I’ve been really busy of late.

 Nekomimi Days (ネコミミデイズ) is an obscure manga by Houki Kusano (草野ほうき) that I discovered on Amazon.co.jp and ordered from the local Kinokuniya. It’s a curious work in that it involves a rather strange genre fiction element, but more as a backdrop than a plot element. It takes place in a world where there’s a “cat-ear cold” going around. It’s like the common cold, except that people who catch it often grow cat ears. They can also acquire certain catlike traits, like an obsession with fish or susceptibility to catnip.

nekomimi_days

Hina Mochizuki (Hii-chan) is a normal girl who lives in an area where there are a lot of both cats and people with cat ears, including her best friend Yuzuko Asahina (Yuzu). The one thing that is a little unusual about Hina is that cats and people with cat ears are naturally drawn to her for some reason.

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Whisper of the Heart – The Dreary versus Fantasy (Worlds).

The kids, and the cat.

So I’ve watched Whisper of the Heart in a Hayao Miyazaki focused film festival of sorts last Friday (along with Porco Rosso, I’ve watched all the other films they had there previously), and I was bothered by something  in Whisper of the Heart, well, a couple of things.

There will be a certain amount of spoilers, be advised.

The first is that it had a “point”, a moral, a lesson it had tried to pass, when I think it’d have worked better as a “Slice of Life” story that just showcases something. Porco Rosso on the other hand was cute, but it was rambling and a bit directionless.

Whisper of the Heart follows Shizuku Tsukihima, a girl who loves reading books, at her senior year of junior high school. In a way, she lives in the world of imagination, reading books voraciously, and fantasizing about the boy whose name appears before hers in many of the books she loves.

By the by, she is a junior high school student, and while some aspects of her and her classmates seem a bit off in age, as in, some fit high schoolers better, and some actually fit elementary schoolers (and even 4th-5th graders at that), on the whole, it seemed fitting, the behaviour, which meant quite a bit. I hate it when films totally butcher how younger people behave for the sake of cliches.

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