Gundam 00 and Sakura Biyori

Sakura Biyori by Hoshimura Mai

十六で君と逢い 百年の恋をしたね
ひらひらと舞落ちる 桜の花びらの下で

[one verse skipped here because it doesn’t flow with the rest of the song, in my opinion.]

君と僕と ”桜日和” 風に揺れて舞い戻る
まるで長い夢から覚めたように 見上げた先は桃色の空

好きでした好きでした 笑顔咲き染めた君が
僕だけが知っていた 右側やわらかな居場所

桜の下の約束 「来年もここに来よう」って
何度も確かめあったけど 今も果たせぬまま

君と僕と ”桜日和” 風にそっと甦る
君も今どこかで見てるのかなぁ あの日と同じ桃色の空

追いかけた日々の中に 刻まれた足跡は
何よりもかけがえのない宝物

君と僕と ”桜日和” 風に揺れて舞い戻る
とめどない想いが溢れ出して 涙がこみ上げた

君と僕と ”桜日和” 風に揺れて舞い戻る
まだ見ぬ未来を胸に抱いて 見上げた先は桃色の空

Relatively decent translation found here.

Song rating:
Overall: 10/10
Lyrics: 9.5/10 (only because of that one verse which didn’t fit in, in my opinion.)
Singer voice: 9/10 (the huskiness is pleasing, although her vocal range and prowess is nothing special, she has a good voice.)
Melody: 11/10
Instrumentals: 11/10 (love the koto [I think it’s a koto anyway – Japanese string instrument played by plucking with fingers] in front. It’s also very soothing, with no head-pounding basses or anything. Somehow the instrumentals completely exemplify this ‘Sakura Biyori’.)
—————————–

This song is completely irrelevant to Gundam 00, being Bleach’s 10th ending, but I think I need something to describe how I feel. Sakura Biyori, which translates to ‘Cherry [blossom] weather’, describes this perfectly. Especially the part ‘momoiro no sora’, a pink sky. Okay I am probably just feeling sappy, sentimental and fangirly-ly excessively happy. I’ve been living on Gundam 00 fanfics and icons and scans and reading my Gundam 00 World Report over and over, despite the looming threat of my Physics exam tomorrow.

As you have probably figured by now from my previous transcription and fangirling of G Fest, and by this post, I AM A HUGE GUNDAM 00 FAN.

If someone knows a cure for Gundam 00 fangirliness, do tell me. I need it badly.

It’s as bad as my Loveless obsession, which has thankfully died down a little.

After falling deeply in love with Soubi forever, I couldn’t look at any manga again and think ‘Why, I wish I had Loveless now instead of this.’ Every manga paled in comparison to Loveless, and I read Book 7 so many times I can practically memorise it.

Same with Gundam 00 now, for anime. You might be thinking that Loveless and Gundam 00 are from two nearly opposite genres, but yes, I am weird. The overall pwnsomeness of Gundam 00 has left me craving like crazy for the second season, sadly only to be released in October. I might go suicide before then, grah.

The four utterly hot guys also play a part in my liking for Gundam 00, I don’t deny that. But I’ve seen a lot of things with awesomely hot guys and I don’t bother watching because nothing else interests me except the hot guys. (think Neo Angelique Abyss)

Gundam 00’s plot is pretty good by today’s standards, if occasionally having some minor plotholes that only nitpicky people who fuss over details (like me) will notice. Politics and underlying feelings abound, twisting the story a lot. Just when you think something is going to happen something new pops up. Sometimes this is not always good, because the new thing that pops up feels horrendously fake, but somehow at the end the whole thing ties up beautifully and naturally. I am, of course, referring to the Trinitys.

What I love is the relationship between each of the Meisters and the world they hate, the world they want to change. The political world is amazingly real, with some characters parodying real life leaders. Political situations portrayed are realistic and believable, and the histories of each area is detailed and obviously well thought out. The plot and world of Gundam 00 is not some quick on-the-spot idea – the world at that time is wonderfully planned out. The Meisters all feel real, like real people. They have their own reasons for being Meisters, not some stupid ‘I am a Meister because I am’ thing. They are awesomely lovable, and I feel horrendously attached to them.

The music and OSTs ROCK, it’s one of the few OSTs I listen to over and over again. The execution is smooth, slick and flashy without being cheap or contrived. Dialogue is pretty believable and interesting, with few contrived/dumb lines.

Overall this is one amazing series. It leans more towards girls than the other Gundam series, despite still being Gundam and shounen-ish, with all the political undertones generally for the guys. There are four hot guys as the leading gentlemen and a really imbalanced guy-to-girl ratio. Fanservice for the guys, unlike previous Gundam series, is almost non-existent, while fanservice for girls is more apparent, like in the animation of ED2 ‘Friends’. Not that I mind, seeing as I’m female. In fact, I bemoan the lack of more fanservice, and more blatant fanservice. Oh, what I would give to see Lockon play strip poker. But that’s just my innate fangirl talking, ignore please.

It’s a great series to start watching Gundam with – you don’t need to know anything about previous Gundam series or anything. It’s relatively easy to follow, while being puzzling and intriguing at the same time. Characters are pretty well fleshed out, despite having a GIGANTIC cast.

Essentially, if you haven’t watched it yet, WATCH IT NOW. I COMMAND YOU.

My favourite Meister of all time is Allelujah Haptism. He inspires the same feeling in me as Soubi does, despite being vastly different from Soubi. He’s really sweet and adorable, even with such a horrifying and traumatic past and an alter-ego to always remind him of that past. His voice and expressions touch my heartstrings. His voice, considering that he’s the tallest at 186cm, and he’s the most well built and muscled of all the Meisters, is really really soft and sweet, done by Yoshino Hiroyuki. [cue fangirl] Despite being soft and sweet it’s not girly at all, and it doesn’t sound overtly young or unreal in any way. [HE HAS THE LEAST SCREENTIME, HE DOESN’T APPEAR MUCH AFTER EP 11, UNTIL EP 23 OR SO, WHAI WHAI WHAI THEY ARE SO UNFAIR TO HIM]

The character who is subjected to the most fangirly squealiness is Hallelujah, Allelujah’s split personality. His seme-ness overwhelms, I just want to fall into his arms and faint and die there happily. His voice is also done by Yoshino Hiroyuki, and the difference between Allelujah’s soft spoken sweet tones and Hallelujah’s rough edged, crazy voice is amazing. He sounds awesomely seme and badass and I love it. Lockon is also really close behind in squealiness – I like seme guys a lot. 8D Setsuna is also reeeeeally close behind, because I have an innate streak of shotacon. Setsuna, despite being supposedly 16, looks 12.

All the Meisters are really close to my heart. Setsuna with his emotionless face and words, Lockon with his awesome coolness and casual flippancy, Allelujah with his sweetness and adorable personality, Tieria with his cold emotionless exterior that gradually dissolves into a more human like personality. Tieria is really, really icy at first, despite wearing pink and looking like some 14 year old school girl, because he is a bishounen, defined here as ‘a boy with a rare kind of beauty that transcends gender’. All of them really grow on you. Or at least, me, at any rate. I feel like I really know them, and have that wistful feeling of wanting a Meister or four.

Did I mention that Kouga Yun was the one who did the original character designs? |D NOW YOU ALL KNOW WHY THEY ARE ALL SO HOT, BECAUSE KOUGA YUN-SAMA DID THEM. [/Kouga Yun worship]

Ratings:
Overall: 91357107290/10
Art: 10/10 (very very awesome art style – they adapted Kouga Yun’s art style into it. Characters look awesomely hot and nearly everyone’s face looks different.)
Animation: 9/10 (Would be a straight 10 if it was more consistent.)
OP/ED: 11/10
Music: 10/10
Voice acting: 10/10
Story/Plot: 9.5/10
Flow: 10/10
Characters: 92358936610/10

Okay this is a crappy thing masquerading as a review. Whatever. I shall submit a proper non-fangirly eeeeally long review after my exams.

I NEED SUNRISE TO RELEASE SEASON 2 NOW. It’s only coming out in October, I don’t think I can wait that long GAH.

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~ by Someone in the Universe on May 4, 2008.

2 Responses to “Gundam 00 and Sakura Biyori”

  1. Bleach is on its tenth ending? Goodness me.

    I’m surprised you suggest that 00 was aimed, fanservice-wise, at the female viewer, because a lot of bloggers were muttering about the well-endowed bridge bunnies, as well as Wang Liu Mei. But I suppose in terms of pure prettyboy screentime the fangirls were the winners.

  2. Technically only Sumeragi was well endowed. There was hardly any male fanservice, except for the couple of beach/swim wear scenes and Sumeragi’s occasional not-overtly-revealing tops. There are things 9235728 times worse, like the Stellar-Shinn groping thing. I think, so far, compared to SEED and SEED Destiny, 00 has really little male fanservice so far. And there’s nothing that’s indecent, like no nude scenes or anything.

    Yes, prettyboy time owns. <3 ED2 was quite female fanservicey, what with Allelujah and Setsuna stripping and Lockon and Tieria emoing. A lot of males whom I know have called 00 gay by the virtue that it caters a lot more to females.

    This is also very evident when you compare fanfiction – 90% of 00 fanfics are guyguy pairings. |D

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