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Juuni Taisen: Zodiac War (TV).


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Stark700



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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:59 am Reply with quote

Jūni Taisen: Zodiac War (TV)

Genres: action

Plot Summary:
Quote:
The 12th Twelve Tournament gets held every twelve years. Twelve brave, strange warriors who bear the names of the signs of the zodiac fight each other for the lives and souls.The victor of this tournament gets to have one wish granted, whatever the wish may be.

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Stark700



Joined: 30 Jan 2012
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 11:41 am Reply with quote
Episode 1:

Not sure how I feel about this yet. 12 characters and most of them seem to have some dark personality. I'm not sure if most of them will be able to get characterization unless this spans for more than one season. (I think it was mentioned before that it's a possible split)

Given the context of the anime, I'm guess we'll get even more violence from now on. That girl with the twin guns got the most highlight so far. Usagi's voice is pretty recognizable in this.
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Harleyquin



Joined: 29 May 2014
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 12:17 pm Reply with quote
Nishio Ishin is a prolific writer, but something like this is new territory even for him. He did manage to write the whole Katanagatari series in record time, but combining the action scenes there with a battle royale setting and enough word puns based on the Eastern Zodiac to render any attempt at a fast English translation useless takes some doing.

If the names and episode titles weren't enough, it seems even the abilities of the 12 warriors are tied to their base natures as Zodiac animals. So far it's 2 down and a lot of action to go before a new winner can be crowned.

Fittingly there are 12 episodes with each participant getting his/her turn in the spotlight. I don't know if it's deliberate or if it will change later on, but doing the zodiac in reverse order does potentially spoil things especially for those familiar with how the zodiac order came to be in the first place.

Pigs usually learn to weed out the runt of the litter quickly, but the porcine representative here has a thinking pattern befitting the snake or her bugbear the Monkey. For all the plotting and manipulating she did over 12 years, it really feels like an anti-climax when she meets her fate at the end of the episode.
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DuskyPredator
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 5:52 am Reply with quote
I was kind of disappointed that happened to Boar girl in the end, I was kind of getting into her twisted personality and thought she might be an interesting main character with her more mature look. So I guess I will just have to give in to going for Monkey who is the least openly evil/insane, although I am kind of hoping that she will turn out to be nuts.

This is pretty trashy with its exploitive violence, but it is a good kind of trash because it is super embracing itself. I laughed at the insane character design of the rabbit, and felt I am most certainly going to watch this.
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Harleyquin



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 11:30 am Reply with quote
#2

Overconfidence appears to be a fatal trait shared amongst many of the seasoned competitors of the Twelve. First the Boar and now the Dog have fallen precisely because they let their overconfidence blind them to the possibility of their opponents doing something unexpected to turn the tables.

To be honest I was expecting something like what happened at the end because the whole episode and to some extent last week had been leading up to that moment. I'm also not surprised that the next episode shifts the POV to the now drugged-up Rooster, but if the title is anything to go by viewers will get to see to what extent Ox deserves his reputation as one of the competition front-runners.

ED animation is a style I've seen before but can't put my finger on it. Taking the 12 and giving them outfits showcasing snapshots of their more ordinary moments has been executed by other series in various capacities but I can't think of any concrete examples off-hand. It's amusing to see Ox still has the horns even when he's in civilian clothing, especially when Rabbit ditches the more outlandish aspects of his combat outfit.
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Blood-
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 11:50 am Reply with quote
Yeah, as I noted in the Fall Preview thread, the forumula seems to be that the character who gets the most interior monologues in an eppie, dies. At this juncture, I'm going to guess that the last two characters standing will be Monkey and Rabbit (plus whatever walking dead he still has at that point). They seem to have the two most diametrically opposed viewpoints. I have no real feel for who's next on the chopping block but that will be clear as soon as I start to see who is getting the most interior monologues next time.
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Harleyquin



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:12 pm Reply with quote
Blood- wrote:
Yeah, as I noted in the Fall Preview thread, the forumula seems to be that the character who gets the most interior monologues in an eppie, dies. At this juncture, I'm going to guess that the last two characters standing will be Monkey and Rabbit (plus whatever walking dead he still has at that point). They seem to have the two most diametrically opposed viewpoints. I have no real feel for who's next on the chopping block but that will be clear as soon as I start to see who is getting the most interior monologues next time.


Here's another pattern. The episode titles are in reverse Zodiac order. Each animal featured in the episode title has died. Will it be third time lucky for a reversal or another one going to plan?

The last winner of the competition was the Boar. Both this episode and the last one have given hints that the sleepy head is a possible dark horse (no disrespect to the actual Horse). Going by the legend of the Eastern Zodiac and the order in which it is governed, I'm obviously not buying the Monkey and Rabbit last pair standing hypothesis especially when Ox is heavily favoured in this series from the outset.
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Blood-
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:20 pm Reply with quote
I noted that having your character name in the title is not a good sign either, but when two character names appear in the title as it did in episode 2, it does obscure things a bit.

I am curious about Sleepyhead, aka the Rat. The Boar mentioned there was something familiar about him as did both the Dog and the Rooster. This seems like a long shot, but I wonder if he is actually Duedecuple the Referee? It doesn't make sense that the Referee would also be a participant in the game, but he vanished like a hologram. I'm just trying to figure out why some of the characters have a sense of deja vu about him.
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Harleyquin



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:48 pm Reply with quote
Blood- wrote:
I noted that having your character name in the title is not a good sign either, but when two character names appear in the title as it did in episode 2, it does obscure things a bit.

I am curious about Sleepyhead, aka the Rat. The Boar mentioned there was something familiar about him as did both the Dog and the Rooster. This seems like a long shot, but I wonder if he is actually Duedecuple the Referee? It doesn't make sense that the Referee would also be a participant in the game, but he vanished like a hologram. I'm just trying to figure out why some of the characters have a sense of deja vu about him.


鶏鳴狗盗: From the original Chinese proverb 鸡鸣狗盗. The original meaning in Chinese is actions conforming to the low road of dirty tricks and low cunning. The Japanese meaning is largely the same.

The clever bit from Nisio Ishin is placing the animal doing the killing on the left with the victim animal on the right as was the case in this episode. It so happens both animals are next to each other on the Eastern Zodiac, which when combined with the events and thinking processes of this week's zodiac animal makes the choice of title particularly apt.

If the pattern for "Left killer, Right killed" is followed next week, well it shouldn't be too difficult to see why based on events towards the end. I expect the Chicken (can't call her a Rooster like in the traditional sense) to take the spotlight and to die by next week because of the side-effects of the nerve toxin.
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DuskyPredator
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:33 am Reply with quote
I probably should learn my lesson here, stop getting attached to the internal monologue character of the episode, enjoying their character, because they will probably die. In that way I think it is sort of reminiscent of Magical Girl Raising Project, where I would find myself liking a character before things happened. I kind of hope it won't ruin the interest in who might actually die. The next episode title seems to be hinting it is chicken.
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Dessa



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PostPosted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 2:57 pm Reply with quote
Harleyquin wrote:
ED animation is a style I've seen before but can't put my finger on it. Taking the 12 and giving them outfits showcasing snapshots of their more ordinary moments has been executed by other series in various capacities but I can't think of any concrete examples off-hand.


Fate/Zero did that for at least one of the seasons.
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Stark700



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 11:05 am Reply with quote
Episode 2 had the chicken doing the killing but ironically, it's now the chicken's turn to fall in episode 3.

I think it's kinda interesting that they gave her a background story though. I mean, it pretty much sets up for a death flag for her but gave the chance for the audience to understand the chicken better.

Can't say that she didn't deserve that though.
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Harleyquin



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 11:40 am Reply with quote
The title for this week was a dead giveaway, so unfortunately events are going as scripted so far. Fortunately next week's episode title is more vague so there's perhaps a chance next week's protagonist of the week might survive, but I'm not counting on it based on what the umpire had to say.

The Hound got played thoroughly by Niwatori and paid for it. Considering her background, it's perhaps not surprising he wasn't aware of who she was since contract killers and professional sleeper agents don't usually cross paths.

Viewers have just seen a glimpse of what the Monkey is capable of. When she says 平和裏に殺す, she really means it since her "killing" style is a neutralisation of the opponent's killing intent through means unknown (I suspect the coffee she prepared has some kind of mind-controlling drug). Not only that, the Chicken actually followed her final throwaway instruction to the letter which directly resulted in her death at the hands of the natural born killer.

The Ox has at least three gems, but there's no corpse to take to the knacker's yard. Since Horse hasn't had his turn, I'm going to assume he survived somehow despite his injuries.

さるもの doesn't actually mean Monkey at all, but the first two characters on their own can refer to the animal. It's an appropriate description of the Monkey warrior when the original meanings are applied, but the latter part is more vague and doesn't give much away regarding how the Monkey might proceed (or meet her end if the trend of this series continues). No set phrase for ひっかくもの, but taken separately there is one warrior whose attribute matches that of the verb. If my guess is right, he'll need to do something special to eliminate a warrior whose very purpose is to neutralise hostility making a fatality conceptually impossible.
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Blood-
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 3:37 pm Reply with quote
@ Harleyquin - interesting insights. Your knowledge of Japanese certainly is a useful resource for hints about this show. Like you, I wonder if the Monkey Warrior will finally break the "name in title" curse. I hope she does, I find her interesting. Plus, if she dies, that ruins my "Monkey vs. Rabbit in final showdown" prediction. I also suspect you are correct in assuming that Horse survived considering we didn't see a corpse. And yes, I also assume Monkey has some kind of "killing neutralization" power. Not sure if it was in the coffee, because I think Chicken was already showing signs of being under its influence even beforehand, but I'd have to go back and rewatch to make sure.

Yet another character (Chicken) has had a "have I seen him (Rat) before... nah, must just be my imagination" moment. I will enjoy the reveal of whatever that's about when it comes.

This show is definitely one of my "can't wait for the next episode" titles this season.
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DuskyPredator
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:50 am Reply with quote
Not only case of the episode character dying again, but also a case that I liked the character. The showing that she is quite the actress and able to like a bird of prey swoop in when her target is most vulnerable. Which in turn makes it all the more weird that she failed to attack monkey, blaming it on the drug, but I like the theory put that monkey's power or something is something used that can neutralise people from being aggressive from her or like. Monkey has actually been at the top of my list of extended main character, but her place as next in the ED and next episode title does seem to hint she will be the next killed. Often times the mystery of who next is supposed to be part of the show, but maybe this one is a bit off that, considering the author, it all seems more as springboards for different characters rather than a focus on mystery of who falls.

So if monkey is likely to fall next, I think rat will be the one to pay attention to. If I remember the story of the zodiac race, it is the rat that won by sneaking onto the ox, and so far we are moving backwards from the supposed rankings, which would imply deaths would be: boar, dog, rooster, spoiler[monkey, sheep, horse, snake, dragon, rabbit, tiger, ox, and rat]. Although, now that I think about it the snake already died, but is a zombie and is placed around the supposed brother of the dragon, where their stories might come around or at the same time for an extra episode in one in twelve. I am thinking ahead to what power the rat would have, which by looking at the tale the rat won by being unnoticed and hitching a ride, which could have a connection to how people think they have seen the rat before but figure out where. Or looking at how he introduces himself as "killing all" makes me think of the rat's reputation as carriers of plague.

But I could make up other theorise that I don't know how much of a stretch. I think that I saw someone say he might have pretended to be the referee or something, but that also gives me an idea. This rat might be the 13th, the animal that did not make the race, the cat. Which I think was from a combination of the cat sleeping, and being lied to by the rat, the sleeping bit could be easily compared to how rat is always sleeping, almost a weird addition. Which along the lines has me theorise along the term of "copy cat", the cat is a master of disguise and or copies abilities, and maybe this is has something to why people have a vague feeling of seeing him somewhere. Interesting animal fact, cats actually do have such a mimicry ability, the sound they make differs depending on their targets, where apparently they have been known to make mouse like sounds to lure them into lowering guard. And the one we mostly hear with humans is actually cats mimicking the sound of human babies, which is why their meows tend to have an emotional response.

Anyway, that will be my theorise for now.


Last edited by DuskyPredator on Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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