Moetan – Episode 1 Review

July 9, 2007

Yep, it’s that time again. Now that the Summer season is kicking in, I finally got motivated to write another review. This time, I plan on going for the entire series as opposed to episodes here and there. Or at least that’s what I’m saying now. I plan on doing some on HiguKai as well, but it’s opening up with it’s anime original arc. Being a big fan of the game though, I can’t say I’m too fond on reviewing it. Especially when I was expecting to see a fun arc thrown in there from the games. We’ll see what happens though and I might just start this week. Depends on how interesting they made it, aside from doing a time skip.

But it’s Moetan time. Probably the only show I gave some recognition too aside from HiguKai. No I don’t care about ZnT when there’s series like this out there to watch.

Moetan joins the realm of comedies on Sunday. Now we have some previous hits (Hayate, Seto no Hanayome, and Lucky Star) that it will definitely be competing with. In my opinion, it’s first episode blew all of the three out of the water. But that’s probably because my mind is terribly messed up. Whatever the case, I don’t even know how to introduce this show without it introducing itself. So we’ll go ahead and move on before I try.

Yeah…not the opening I was expecting. For those of us that know Moetan…this isn’t quite what one could expect. We instead begin with a magician on trial. Frankly this is the one part of the show that may REMOTELY interest a girl…and the rest…nil. But for this brief few seconds you can enjoy this male master of magic as a bishounen. Yes, I’m foreshadowing that something will happen to him. But the guy is on trial, what did you expect to happen to him? Anyhow, our lucky friend manages to escape his trial as he believes he is innocent. But as soon as he makes his great escape, the scene changes. Sorry ladies, it’s over already so let the men back in so they can watch.

Meet Ink. Ink is a loli and the main heroine of our story. And like most heroines in mahou shoujo series, she’s a complete ditz. And also like most heroines in mahou shoujo series she has a love interest, Nao or “Nao-kuuuuuuuuuuuuun” if you’re Ink (but she puts kun at the end of everyone’s name or chan at least). But today is different for Ink as she decides she wants to walk to school with him. Man, we haven’t heard this before but it’s not like anybody cares anyway. Much in the klutz fashion, Ink ends up tripping trying to follow Nao and misses her opportunity. That’ll teach you to have sick, inappropriate daydreams when you should be trying to achieve those sick, inappropriate daydreams. After sustaining an injury to her head, Ink is helped by a strange man. And not a simple strange, like Abarebou Di Gi Charat strange (and his CV is in this). There’s also a cop after this man, who isn’t too normal himself. But let’s not focus on temporarily irrelevent events and move on.

Man, let’s take the stereotypes a bit further shall we? Let’s present Ink’s good friends from school. The basic sexy type with a huge chest and the basic tomboy type with no chest. Man, that’s nothing new but still attractive nonetheless. See? You can repeat some things and still have them be appealing. At least if they’re done right. Anyhow, Ink’s friends decide to help her out on her quest towards inappropriate thoughts. Since both of them have a backbone, they call Nao over for Ink in hopes of generating conversation. The two sit down and have a long talk about their feelings…yep. Well, since it had to be realistic, Ink gets too nervous and instead gets pity taken on her. Nao decides to put a bandage on her head and walk off, generating no progress whatsoever. Well unless Nao was a normal guy, in which case something would have actually happened.

Oh wait, girls can come back in now. We see our funny magician friend yet again. Despite his escape, he didn’t completely get away. Instead of facing punishment in the court, he is banished from the land and sent elsewhere. Well, you know what this means. Love Triangle…I mean…the person who’s going to help Ink. But you know when Ink sees him, she’ll fall in love and forget about Nao for about three episodes. I mean, we’ve had every other stereotype happen. Well, now in the next scene with Ink at least (girls leave again please). Here we meet Sumi, in other words, Ink’s so called rival. At least she seems to consider herself a rival of sorts. Her hair is also the most magical thing in this show, like a magical super ahoge. With yet another character introduction out of the way, Ink tries to further her relationship with Nao again. This involves trying to walk home with him rather than walk to school. You guessed it, she’s a creative one. But this time, we learn Nao isn’t that bright and has to talk to the teacher about his English test. Saying he might drop out of college, it makes Ink nervous as she obviously doesn’t know where he lives otherwise (I mean, she was only there that morning). So instead she goes to the shrine and prays. And if you know one thing about anime, praying at the shrine is just a bad idea.

It’s here that we have our two main characters meet for the first time. Well…in a way. It happens our magician friend turned into a duck (don’t ask me) on his trip to Ink’s world. Upon realizing that he’s now a talking duck, our no longer bishounen friend collapses from the shock. Ink decides to take him home and we get to learn more about him. Our magician friend was known as Arks in his world but ends up getting a name overhaul to Ahiru or Ah-kun (again with the kun) from Ink. He settles on this fine and asks Ink to become a mahou shoujo to help people out. Why he’s motivated to do such a thing is rather vague, but there might be one reason. And that reason is coming up. Ink decides to agree as she figures she can use her power to help and impress Nao. With that, we learn why Ahiru may have wanted her to become a mahou shoujo after all.

Yeah, I couldn’t even think of capping the full transformation sequence. It’s taking it quite to a different level and we learn that Ahiru has a bit of a problem. Well, I guess I was wrong about where the attraction is coming from. But at this point, who could blame the guy? So after her transformation, Ink isn’t just ink anymore. She’s Pastel Ink or more specifically Magical Teacher Pastel Ink. To be honest, I’d be highly motivated to go to college if I could get a tutor like her. Whatever the case, Pastel Ink decides to fly off to Nao’s house and help him learn his English. Time for some fun, Moetan style.

After a freaky entrance, Pastel Ink is finally allowed into Nao’s house. I have to admit the whole pose greeting may have been a bit much but I still wouldn’t deny a girl that cute entrance into my room. Sure, she might be psycho but that doesn’t mean THAT much. Anyhow, we get a fine example of a Moetan phrase. “Don’t you think that magical girls look the same even after they transform?” Yep, not even kidding you. Though Ink isn’t a very good example of this phrase. Only because she gets a complete hair color change and starts dressing like a slut. Not exactly the same. In his boredom, Ahiru begins to browse Nao’s room. Aside from all the otaku related things, Nao also seems to be into the ero scene. Ahiru shows this to Ink and begins to freak the girl out a bit. Upon discovering a duck is digging out all his ero magazines and that his tutor is now exposed to all of it, he kicks the two out in an instant. Surprisingly, Ink didn’t run herself and I frankly would have. Since we’ve now learned Nao isn’t much different from most of us, good guy. Ink returns home and takes a bath, where Ahiru decides to spy on her casually. After getting knocked out the window, we see an onlooker (a bunny girl specifically) that happens to be looking for him. Woo…scary conclusion right? Maybe if she wasn’t a bunny girl, yes.

A pretty basic and very mahou shoujo opening. They decided to play it at the end instead of the ending since they made the episode that short bit longer. Frankly, I didn’t mind but I look forward to seeing the ED theme. Not a bad song either, catchy and definitely a Lantis sponsored thing. After seeing the producer of Lantis at AX, I have to say I admire the guy. Too bad nobody held the same respect for him as I did at that panel.

On a final note, it’s time to learn more English with Pastel Ink. Probably one of the funniest comments ever heard in an anime, the phrase is “It’s great that the animation staff go all out with the quality of an anime’s first episode.” If that wasn’t clever, than I don’t know what is. And because of that note, I didn’t feel like I need a closing picture for once. Just look back at the phrase and that’s about as clever as can be. Don’t even want to try and beat it.

Conclusion: Hot

A great episode in terms of opening the series. It didn’t overly introduce characters and still got you familiar with all the elements that will occur in the show. All the characters are pretty stereotypical but with the addictive art style, good CV casting, and interesting variation in appeals. And most of all, this series is so much loli that it hurts. We’ll see how the second episode fairs as it decided to make the comment itself. The quality was great so far but we’ll see what happens next. If it turns out the same in every way as this episode, then I’ll love this series. If it decides to go a different route, then I don’t think I could stomach the series the same way. Well, it could get better later even which makes my mouth water. I can’t say I’m a big mahou shoujo fan but this is definitely something I can watch aside from StrikerS in the genre.

Next week, we get to see more of magical ahoge Sumi. And it looks like it’ll attack in full force. We also have yet to figure out the mystery behind the bunny girl, who is probably the quiet loli of the series. We’ll see how it goes.


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