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Ima Sokoniiru Boku
(Now and Then, Here and There)

Episode 2: Shounen to Kyou-ou to

(The Boy and the Crazy King and)

Copyright: ©1999, AIC, Pioneer LDC Inc.
Length: 25 minutes
Rating: NR, Mature Audiences
Format: Original Japanese Dialogue (VHS, LD, DVD)


dvd jacket

Kono watashini sakaraudato! Mushikerame!
(You dare go against me! You little worm!)

Lala-ru has been caught by Heryud's forces while Shuu is presumed to have plunged to his death. However, despite his probable death, Nabuca, leader of one of the youth groups is nothing but thorough and looks to confirm suspicions of the intruder's demise. Lala-ru in the meantime is taken to Abelia, the woman encountered atop the smokestacks and the person in charge of Hamdo's armed forces. However, much to Abelia's dismay Lala-ru's pendant is missing; a fact which will undoubtedly enrage Hamdo.

Boo and Nabuca encounter Shuu as he searches for Lala-ru and Boo is sent to bring the rest of the troops while Nabuca goes after the infiltrator. When Nabuca confronts Shuu, he ends up slipping from the platform and is saved by Shuu. However, before anything can be said, Taboul arrives and Shuu ends up captured...

capsule review:

Initially, we start off in much the same spirit as the first episode; a touch of the lighter aspects with occasional flashes of more serious storyline. However, it doesn't take long for the story to take a turn for the serious and the more unpleasant sides of the harsh realities of a world at war. With small pieces of information slowly being revealed, viewers start to understand why characters react as they do. Likewise, background information is also revealed about Lala-ru and we are introduced to more characters who will prove to be important in subsequent episodes.

Indeed, introductions abound in this second episode as we are transported to Heryud, where the bulk of the story is to unfold. Most of the introductions are focussed around the youth troops who had cameos in the first episode. Here we have a sense of the troop of young adults in general and the personality clashes which may well come to a head later in the series. Nabuca is very much the leader who is level-headed, capable and follows orders well, Taboul is bold, confident, and a bit of a bully, and Boo is still very much a young child who doesn't fully understand what's happening around him or the hows and whys of war. All are solidly portrayed by their voice actors who breath life into the characters they present.

Also introduced in this second episode is Hamdo, the leader of Heryud, and more than a little insane. Half the time in a world of his own, viewers are made aware very quickly that he is definitely not the most stable of leaders. Indeed, it begs the question of why people would follow him or why he hasn't been targetted for assasination. However, I get ahead of myself. While he is not stable, neither is he completely insane, and perhaps this aspect more than anything else makes him a potentially dangerous character to come.

Nabuca's character is particularly interesting at this point for a minor character. As leader of a small group of youth troops, being saved by Shuu has made an impression on him, enough so that he replays the incident in his mind after curfew. Undoubtedly we'll see more development of his character as time goes on. Most likely dealing with Shuu's actions which are unlike what he would normally expect given the realities of his world.

The story itself moves at a good pace, and, with little in the way of extraneous material, we are drawn further into the story. Background information helps fill in details for character motivations and presents other questions. While we discover the realities of the world and Lala-ru's pendant, we are left with the question of why Lala-ru is important, why children are used as soldiers, and why Abelia does Hamdo's bidding.

The music continues to be solid in this second episode with a good variety of different melodies complimenting the various scenes. And while some may not make for the best listening as a soundtrack, working with the animation and voice acting, the music truly works to enhance the atmosphere of a given scene.

Interestingly, the animation in this second episode is not as strong as the first. Particularly notable is the use of blank or plain coloured backgrounds rather than having the detail we'd seen in the first episode. While at times this is noticeable in a negative way, there are other times where this emptiness is used to enhance the scenes as well. Despite the slight drop in overall quality, it is still good overall for a TV series.

As in the first episode, this episode also ends with an interesting ending scene, and viewers already caught in the story being told, are left curious about what new pieces of information and what new characters are to be introduced in the next episode.
- JYN, 2001.04.10

café rating (original japanese):


4 stars

[4 / 5] - Many more character introductions and also some interesting background information. The story moves quickly and has little in the way of non-essentials.


4 stars
[4 / 5] - Direction continues to be solid here with very good pacing.


4 stars
[4 / 5] - Cast continues to be solid in their roles. Hamdo is suitably on the edge of insanity and does a good job slipping into fits on insane rage and cold calculation.


3 stars
[3 / 5] - A touch weaker than the previous episode with many background shots being without detail. However, this doesn't detract from the overall viewing experience and is used to good effect.


4 stars
[4 / 5] - Music continues to be excellent with a good variety of melodies. Overall, it does an excellent job at enhancing the atmosphere.


[ N/A ] - Based on the original Japanese version.

Overall Rating:

4 stars
[4 / 5] - Viewers are kept firmly focussed on the story unfolding before them. Occasionally brutal, we are drawn further into the story of this world at war and the characters caught in various circumstances. On to the next episode!

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