The Great Passage 舟を編む

Welcome to this week’s review of notable instances of transit, place and culture as rendered in anime currently broadcast in Japan and simulcast internationally via the web. For a detailed outline of the approach, please refer to the explanation in the inaugural issue.

2016 Fall Season Additional Notes

Fune o Amu (Zexcs) was a novel, then a live-action film, and now a broadcast anime series. The first episode features detailed artwork of Jinbōchō street scenes, and I appreciate the attempt to expand beyond cliched narrative with shows from the Noitamina block, so I’ll bring this one into the fold for review.

Girlish Number (Diomedéa) may be of interest, the first episode includes scenes from Akasaka, Daikanyama and Ebisu as well as transit use, but I won’t review week to week.

Sound! Euphonium 2

(響け!ユーフォニアム2 Hibike! Yūfoniamu 2)

Fan Pilgrimage Update

@ye_bi_su (post), @etesuke (post 1, post 2) and @dotproducer (post) made pilgrimages to Uji, Kyoto Prefecture for Episode 2.

@seki_saima (post) and @rinebarrels (post 1, post 2, post 3) made pilgrimages to Kyoto and Uji for the OP, Episode 1 and Episode 2.

Episode 2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Keihan Uji Line (京阪宇治線)

Reina and Kumiko both board at Keihan Uji Station each morning on their commute to school. These trips provide recurring opportunities to isolate the protagonists from the rest of the action while still maintaining a dynamic environment.

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Yamashiro Sports Park (京都府立山城総合運動公園), also known as Taiyōgaoka (太陽が丘)

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Most likely Ajirogi no michi (あじろぎの道)

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Actpal Uji (アクトパル宇治) is an outdoor activity center operated by the city government. Lodging, camping and other accommodations and facilities can be reserved. The center appears to be very accommodating to anime pilgrims, allowing extensive photography of the indoor facilities. It is quite far from the center of Uji and not reachable by public transportation, so visitors looking to make a pilgrimage to this location will require a rental car or help of a friend.

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Higashi Uji High School (京都府立東宇治高等学校)

[Credit: @sshigeki1467, Twitter]

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Todō Senior High School (莵道高校)

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

Sound! Euphonium 2 響け!ユーフォニアム2

March comes in like a lion

(3月のライオン Sangatsu no Raion)

Fan Pilgrimage Update

@Roan_Inish made a pilgrimage to (post 1) Tokyo Station, Ochanomizu Station and Sendagaya Station for Episode 1; and to (post 2, post 3) Tsukuda, Senkawa and Sendagaya for Episode 2.

Episode 2

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

View looking south from Shinkawa (新川), Chūō Ward, Tokyo Metropolis

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Tsukuda 2-chōme (佃2丁目)

Shinkawa and Tsukuda correspond approximately to the work’s Rokugatsu and Sangatsu, respectively.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Chūō Bridge (中央大橋) connects the two districts.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Rei hasn’t used it thus far, but the foreground bridge is the Minami-Takabashi (南高橋), the oldest iron truss bridge in Tokyo.

[Credit: @teo_imperial, Twitter]

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Takabashi (高橋) connects Shinkawa and Hatchōbori.

In this scene, Rei meditates on how he chooses his route to the shōgi hall, but there’s an error in the Crunchyroll subtitles. Sendagaya isn’t “one stop” from where he lives. He says ippon (一本), meaning he could ride one line without transfers, in this case the Toei Subway Ōedo Line (都営地下鉄大江戸線) from Tsukishima Station (月島駅) to Kokuritsu-Kyōgijō Station (国立競技場駅). But on match days, he prefers to walk to the closest JR station, which is Tokyo Station (東京駅), so that he can look at the river. He says he crosses various bridges along the route, though Takabashi is actually the only one he would encounter if taking a direct path.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

After changing at Ochanomizu Station to the Chūō-Sōbu Line (中央・総武緩行線), he can watch the sotobori (外濠) as the train rolls along. Rei’s deliberate attention to both the natural and built environment is a mindfulness practice he uses to calm his mind before shōgi matches.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Rei’s meditation continues through the streets of Sendagaya (千駄ヶ谷).

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Hatanomori Hachiman Jinja (鳩森八幡神社)

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Japan Shōgi Association (日本将棋連盟)

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Rei’s seniors coerce him into an evening of celebration in Ginza (銀座) after winning a match. Ginza, like other popular and high-profile Tokyo locations, is often dropped haphazardly into anime for its recognition value, but here it actually makes sense. The high-end shopping and entertainment district is within walking distance of Rei’s neighborhood.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Ginza Wakō Department Store (銀座和光)

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Their venue is a hostess club, where female staff working on commission pretend to be more interested in you and what you have to say than they really are, with the goal to induce customers to buy as many drinks as possible. By law, nothing approaching prostitution is permitted within these clubs, though sexual overtones can certainly be present. Because the hostess Akari has a close relationship with Rei outside of the club and fills a maternal, protective role toward him, this scene is a lot more wholesome than it would be otherwise.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Shinkawa

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

As Rei leaves his apartment for a grocery run, he again demonstrates a high level of awareness of the built environment around him, describing the warehouses and other buildings as he passes.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Chūō Bridge

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Rei claims there are no markets or bento shops on Rokugatsu/Shinkawa. As of the time of writing there are several, but perhaps these were not present at the time Umino researched the location, or this is simply a plot device to force Rei out of his isolation from time to time.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Rei smells smoke as he approaches Sangatsu/Tsukuda. He doesn’t realize the source at the time, but this is straw being burned for obon (お盆). On the first day of obon, straw is burned to create mukaebi (迎え火 welcoming fire) to guide spirits of the deceased back to their families, then again on the last day for okuribi (送り火) to send them off on the return journey to the afterlife.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Maruetsu Tsukuda shop (マルエツ佃店)

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Straw for obon

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

A chance meeting with the Kawamoto sisters at the market changes Rei’s plans for the remainder of the day. Instead of cup noodles for a solitary dinner, he is invited once again to share a meal at the Kawamoto home. Obon stresses remembrance and honoring of the dead. For Rei and the sisters, who have all lost immediate family members, throughout the year but especially at this time, having the community of each other and a physical environment that facilitates these frequent interactions are precious things.

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Tsukuda (small) Bridge (佃小橋)

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

Chūō Bridge

March comes in like a lion 3月のライオン

The Great Passage

(舟を編む Fune o Amu)

Opening Credits

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

Episode 1

The Great Passage 舟を編む

Jinbōchō (神保町), Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo Metropolis

Jinbōchō was where I lived and attended graduate business school as an exchange student. Though I’ve visited many places in Japan, this is the only one in which I’ve had the sense of being “home”. It doesn’t boast anything particularly remarkable beyond its cluster of bookstores, but as it has special meaning to me, I’m interested to see the treatment given to it in this adaptation.

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

Jinbōchō Station (神保町駅), Tokyo Metro Hanzōmon Line (東京地下鉄半蔵門線) platform

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

Update 2016/12/21: Shussei Inari Jinja (出世稲荷神社) in Hongō

[Credit: @animeseichi, Twitter]

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

The Great Passage 舟を編む

Poco’s Udon World

(うどんの国の金色毛鞠 Udon no Kuni no Kin’iro Kemari)

Episode 2

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Hayashimichi Station (林道駅)

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco is perplexed by the fumikiri, inspecting the gearbox to determine if there is a creature inside operating the arm.

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Kotoden Nagao Line (琴電長尾線), operated by the Takamatsu-Kotohira Electric Railroad (高松琴平電気鉄道)

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Riding the train evokes memories of Sōta’s upbringing in Takamatsu.

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Ōta Station (太田駅), Kotoden Kotohira Line (琴電琴平線)

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Back in the present, Sōta meditates on the passing scenery of fields, homes and trees as he and Poco approach the city center. Though Sōta left for Tokyo to pursue his career, the regional city remains a part of his place-identity and evokes strong feelings of fondness.

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Takamatsu Tokiwachō Shōtengai (高松常磐町商店街)

[Credit: @lidges, Twitter]

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Sanbiki no Kobuta (三びきの子ぶた) anchors the east entrance to the shōtengai.

[Credit: @lidges, Twitter]

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Sōta’s imagined reunion with his first and unrequited love in a cosmopolitan setting clashes with the actual chance meeting in a shōtengai in Takamatsu.

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Poco's Udon World うどんの国の金色毛鞠

Kaname Jun (要 潤) introduces the Takamatsu Port Tamamo Breakwater Lighthouse (高松港玉藻防波堤灯台).

Yuri!!! On ICE

(ユーリ!!! on ICE Yūri on Aisu)

Fan Pilgrimage Update

@taiyaki0628 made a pilgrimage to Karatsu, Saga Prefecture for Episode 1 and Episode 2.

Episode 2

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Karatsu (唐津), Saga Prefecture

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Maizuru Bridge (舞鶴橋)

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Iizuka Ice Palace (飯塚アイスパレス)

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Karatsu Castle (唐津城)

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Karatsu Station (唐津駅)

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Kyōmachi Shōtengai (京町商店街)

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

Yuri!!! On ICE ユーリ!!! on ICE

WWW.WAGNARIA!!

(WWW.WORKING!!)

Fan Pilgrimage Update

@ktism12228s made a pilgrimage to Mount Moiwa for Episode 1 and Asahigaoka for Episode 3 (both Sapporo, Hokkaidō Prefecture).

Episode 3

WWW.WAGNARIA!! WWW.WORKING!!

Miyanomori (宮の森), Chūō Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaidō Prefecture

WWW.WAGNARIA!! WWW.WORKING!!

 

Special Items

Media and General Interest

Toyo Keizai published an article about town revitalization (町おこし machi okoshi) through anime tourism. It discusses recent trends and includes several examples, but takes the position that factors leading to a successful outcome (from the town’s perspective) are too fluid and uncertain for meaningful control.

Nikkei Construction published an article analyzing settings and narrative elements of Kimi no Na wa. from the perspective of architecture and civil engineering.

NHK News Web published an article about pop culture tourism to Hida and Ōgaki, Gifu Prefectre for Kimi no Na wa. and Koe no Katachi, respectively. It goes on to discuss Kadowkawa’s efforts to create a promotional tour based on popular anime pilgrimage locations, the perspective of tourism agencies on anime-induced travel, and its alignment with the Cool Japan strategy to increase inbound tourism.

Mainichi Shimbun published an article about a planned special screening of Kimi no Na wa. at the Hida Cultural Exchange Center. Locations in Hida feature in the film setting, but the city no longer has an operating movie theater.

Chunichi Shimbun published an article about efforts by the Ōgaki Tourism Association to promote pop culture tourism for Koe no Katachi.

Sankei Shimbun (article) and Kahoku Shimbun (article) published stories about pop culture tourism to Maeda-Minami Station in Kita-akita, Akita Prefecture for Kimi no Na wa. The Akita Nairiku Line express trains normally pass this stop, but are temporarily adding a stop at Maeda-Minami until November 6 to induce more use by anime fans.

Gifu Shimbun published an article about pop culture tourism to Gifu Prefecture for Kimi no Na wa., Koe no Katachi, Hyōka and Rudorufu to Ippaiattena.

Otapol (article) and BuzzFeed Japan (article) published stories about pop culture tourism to Hida for Kimi no Na wa.

Future Season Pilgrimage

@Barnirun made a pilgrimage to Osaka for the PV to Hand Shakers.

Other Current Season Pilgrimage

@rimatai made a pilgrimage to Yamato and Zushi, Kanagawa Prefecture for Long Riders!

@ssslocation made a pilgrimage to Akasaka, Minato Ward and Daikanyama, Shibuya Ward (both Tokyo Metropolis) for Girlish Number.

Past Season Pilgrimage

@touyoko_com made a pilgrimage to Yōrō and Gifu, Gifu Prefecture for Koe no Katachi.

@sky_dj_ made a pilgrimage (updated post) to Nagashima Spa Land in Kuwana, Mie Prefecture for Koe no Katachi.

@touyoko_com made a pilgrimage to Shinjuku Ward, Tokyo Metropolis for New Game!

@tenohira17 made a pilgrimage to Numazu, Shizuoka Prefecture for Love Live! Sunshine!!