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Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju: Descending Stories Discussion Thread

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  • [Winter 2017] Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju: Descending Stories Discussion Thread

    Widgets Magazine
    昭和元禄落語心中~助六再び篇~

    The story about rakugo continues as this time, the focus is on Yotaro trying to keep rakugo going at a time where it is quickly being phased out by changing tastes in entertainment.

    Airs: Friday, Jan. 6

    Studio: Deen

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    Season 1 Thread

    Unable to forget a performance of "Shinigami" performed by the rakugo master Yakumo in the prison where he was being held, Yotaro's first act upon his release was go right to the theater, where he begged, pleaded, and was finally accepted as Yakumo's live-in apprentice. After years of refining his art, Yotaro was promoted to the rank of Shinuchi and inherited the title of 3rd Generation Sukeroku. For the sake of his master Yakumo, Konatsu, and to change the image of Sukeroku inside them both, what kind of rakugo will Yotaro discover?

    Notes
    As usual, please try to follow these three easy forum courtesy habits when replying:
    1) If you're the first person to post about an episode in any given week, please respond to the root post (this post) and indicate in the subject line which episode you're posting about.
    2) If someone has already posted about an episode before you, please respond to that post (or a relevant reply to that post). Keep in the right subthread.
    3) Don't use the "Reply to Thread" button because it causes your reply not to correctly inherit the subject line of the post you're replying to. Just click "Reply" to the post you want to reply to.

    For more guidelines please refer to this thread.
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  • #2
    Episode 1

    Rakugo is failing the test of time.

    I just love the way Yotaro narrated the opening to recap what he went through in the first season in the form of a rakugo performance. It started off with him being released from prison, and then finding his reason to live through Sukeroku's rakugo and taking up Yakumo's apprenticeship. Now, he has hit it big having become Sukeroku III, and he has has quite a big challenge ahead of him as rakugo is dying and Sukeroku II's wish of it living on is starting to fade with people quickly losing interest. That was a great way to set the stage for big things to happen as Yotaro needs to find a way to keep this form of theater going and Yakumo isn't exactly willing to let it get corrupted for the sake of its survival. In any case, it's great to be back and it's going as strong as ever now that the attention has shifted.
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    The only thing better than anime is sports. Get hit hard and you got JACKED UP! Or else it's a C'mon Man!

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Episode 1

      This is something of a new beginning, although it is an interesting case in that we in fact began the entire series with Yotaro. His story has quite the predecessor to live up to now. At this point it's hard to imagine it could end up being as compelling, but I never could've guessed how amazing that first season would be in its early moments either. I'm not as confident as I'd be with a standard continuation, but here's hoping.
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      • #4
        Re: Episode 1

        Yotaro is such a nice guy. He was waiting for us all this time. I like him.

        Yotaro takes on the Sukeroku name instead of Yakumo and is now a shuinchi. And he wants to do rakugo differently. Yakumo doesn't believe in writing new rakugo stories since he believes it'll corrupt the art. But Yotaro probably believes that people of this time period don't have any interest in listening to century old stories so there should be something new. And with this he'll try to bring rakugo back up.

        Nice to see the fun Yotaro returning. Looking forward to more.
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        • #5
          Episode 2

          An entertainer is only worth something if they're seen.

          Yotaro's past is coming back to haunt him in a big way as not only are people reluctant to support a convicted criminal (hence moving his performances from a theater to some place much smaller), but Yotaro is letting it affect his performance as his mindset really suffers. Stripping and showing off his tattoo was one of the things that was done out of desperation, and it was an epic fail. Yotaro sure is going through some tough times there, but Yakumo definitely looks at things in a positive light as he just sees Yotaro as Sukeroku III rather than a former yakuza thug. That was well-done once again going to show just how much struggle Yotaro is going through with not only his shameful past, but with rakugo hanging by a thread.
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          The only thing better than anime is sports. Get hit hard and you got JACKED UP! Or else it's a C'mon Man!

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          • #6
            Re: Episode 2

            Heh, I liked the detail of the kid having brought his game to entertain himself. Is that an old school Game Boy? Had me thinking about the time period a little bit, because if it is, then it would have to be the last year of Showa, if we're even still in Showa at all at this point.

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            • #7
              Re: Episode 2

              So there are rumours spreading around about Yotaro's past and it's affecting him badly. He isn't getting work and he's a bit in a slump. They showed the whole performance to show that Yotaro isn't going well. The part where everyone was supposed to laugh didn't get even a smile. And Yotaro half stripped to boot. He now has to overcome this problem by facing his past and accepting it. And that writer guy once came to Yakumo as an apprentice but wasn't taken in and now he's back. He wants rakugo to flourish and not go to Yakumo's grave. And he knows a lot. Now to see how Yotaro overcomes the problems he's facing.
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              • #8
                Re: Episode 2

                They didn't slack on making this OP follow up its predecessor. Those are some haunting visuals, and do not bode well for the man we've been following through the generations. He just has to survive long enough for Konatsu's child to be able to appreciate his performance. Not sure if that preview is indicating things may be going south very soon. He's still such a great character; he may be strict with Yotaro, but he's exactly the support he needs at times like this when he could break entirely without it.
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                • #9
                  Re: Episode 2

                  Originally posted by EmperorBrandon View Post
                  Heh, I liked the detail of the kid having brought his game to entertain himself. Is that an old school Game Boy? Had me thinking about the time period a little bit, because if it is, then it would have to be the last year of Showa, if we're even still in Showa at all at this point.
                  Quick, in a background of the first episode there was what looked like a poster (already partially covered by another) for The Last Emperor, which was 1987. Showa ends January, 1989. Gamboy came out in April of that year in Japan. (It looked like a Gameboy--nothing else looked like that then.)

                  So...right. The story's never tried to be precise about the year at any point, only the period (Showa). The biggest time notation was Yotaro's narration for this being ten years later. (And we're probably several months or a year beyond that already, using the baby as a yardstick.) I think the previous point itself was about 15 or 20 years after Sukeroku's death?
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                  • #10
                    Re: Episode 2

                    Originally posted by bctaris View Post
                    Showa ends January, 1989. Gamboy came out in April of that year in Japan. (It looked like a Gameboy--nothing else looked like that then.)
                    Yeah, I had that all looked up because I was curious about it (wasn't exactly sure on the dates of the emperor's death and the release of the Gameboy). But if the Gameboy is out, then Emperor Showa is definitely already dead. Though I hadn't looked at how the calendar worked. So 1989 would be both Showa 64 and Heisei 1, and only the former for the brief period at the very beginning of the year. So I guess at this point we can say the series has gone beyond the era in the title.

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                    • #11
                      Episode 3

                      The more things change, the more they stay the same.

                      So Komatsu's son's name is Shin, which is fitting as that is the late Sukeroku's birth name. Pretty much, this episode is all about Yotaro recalling how rakugo saved his life when he went down the wrong path in life as he meets his former boss, and how he turned his life around learning under Yakumo. But there's still quite a lot to learn as he's still acting confrontational all while Yakumo doesn't quite approve of his style yet. In any case, it's another impressive rakugo showing, especially with Yakumo's performance of something Sukeroku used to do.
                      MyAnimeList | Avatar: Violet Evergarden of KyoAni's Violet Evergarden
                      Watching: Kyo Kara Maoh, Pokemon Sun and Moon, Toonami Stuff
                      Simulcasts: FTL, FRB, KYB, FGN, MIX, FIL
                      The only thing better than anime is sports. Get hit hard and you got JACKED UP! Or else it's a C'mon Man!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Episode 3

                        Well, there's further confirmation of the date (and being past the Showa era at this point) there, with the diary Higuchi is writing in showing that it's currently July 1989.

                        And now we're seeing Konatsu herself had gotten herself entangled with the yakuza. May have more drama to come with this later even after Yotaro's very gutsy confrontation.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Episode 3

                          That was a hell of an episode for Yotaro. Definitely getting some great character development. And he gets to see his master do Sukeroku at the end!

                          Matsuda is immortal.
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                          • #14
                            Episode 4

                            A rakugo for kids.

                            Shin is now in school, and he's got the Jugemu all mastered. He listens in on one of Yotaro's performances unaware that it's not appropriate for kids. So he pits on a rakugo performance at school and he was a hit. Komatsu sure does have lots of potential seeing that she entertained guests at a soba shop many years ago, but unfortunately she was not really interested seeing that she feels that it's too manlyfhor her. That was great to see that Shin got to appreciate hearing his parents performing.
                            MyAnimeList | Avatar: Violet Evergarden of KyoAni's Violet Evergarden
                            Watching: Kyo Kara Maoh, Pokemon Sun and Moon, Toonami Stuff
                            Simulcasts: FTL, FRB, KYB, FGN, MIX, FIL
                            The only thing better than anime is sports. Get hit hard and you got JACKED UP! Or else it's a C'mon Man!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Episode 4

                              Shin-chan is so danged adorable. I daresay he even outdoes her mother's adorableness when she was around that age. Though after I thought that, we get some adorableness from her as an adult later in the episode. That was a really sweet scene.

                              I kept getting the ending theme to Joshiraku stuck in my head. While things with rakugo origins there is not surprising at all (since it's what the show's about), actually the first thing I thought of was the beginning of Pretty Sammy's incantation (from the Mihoshi Special and Time and Space Adventures). I think I've never realized where that came from until now.

                              Comment

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