Annotated Anime: Shirobako episode 12


Hideaki Anno Saves Christmas

Last time on Shirobako, the final episode of Exodus is in trouble as Aoi cannot find enough animators to complete the complex and difficult animations needed for the climatic moment. This week, in a stroke of fortune, Aoi runs into a particular animation veteran--or god to some--by the name of Kanno, who directed a popular show called Ava that aired in 1995. 

The thinly veiled Hideaki Anno reference aside, Chekov's Animator Sugie comes to the rescue and puts on a show for his juniors at Musani, knocking out the difficult horseback chase scenes while the younger animators do second key animation. Shirobako puts the finishing touch on a merry Christmas for the hard-at-work at Musashi Animation as everyone puts in long hours and finish the last episode of Exodus, and wraps up this week at a drinking party. This one isn't just your usual nomikai, but a heartful, hard-earned one.

Sup brah

I hope everyone had a great holiday break and are fresh for the new year. Did you had some time off to catch up on your backlogged anime titles? Did you watched some old favorites? I know I did both. What I also wanted to talk about briefly is that Fate/Stay Night remake. During its Japanese airing, the official Fate/Stay Night remake twitter account temporarily gets possessed by the original creator, Nasu Kinoko, who would live tweet the on-air screening. With the final episode of the first half of this split-cour release, he made a curious tweet telling people to watch Shirobako.

The gist of the tweet is to tell people to appreciate the work the animators have put into the show, especially something as high profile and carefully tended as the Fate/Stay Night remake. It takes time to make great anime, not just love, passion and money.

If anything, the last episode of Shirobako in 2014 puts a pretty red bow on top of the literally-translated white box, showing us exactly what goes into making a good anime. In a meta sense, it no longer matters how Shirobako made me laugh or cry along its journey of animation, now that I had some time to distance myself from first watching, then reacting, to the latest episode. The appreciation I gained for the human elements behind this elaborate and complex creative process translates to all the other shows I enjoyed.

Laugh it up

And I think that's ultimately the most beautiful thing Shirobako has done, by adding the human element to something that is highly commercialized, that often times are not much more than paid-for advertisement. For those of us who love anime as what it is, Shirobako unveils something a lot more humane and lovable than simply animators at work.

The second cour of Shirobako starts up with the coming episode with a new OP and ED. I am looking forward to how it can yet again make me laugh and cry, but because the first half of it is so stellar that this show is going to have a tall task to live up to.

A blu-ray disc

[Watch Shirobako on Crunchyroll! If it loads...]

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Jeff Chuang
Jeff ChuangAssociate Editor   gamer profile

Yet to be the oldest kid on the block, this East Coast implant writes cryptic things about JP folklore, the industry or dirty moe. Attend cons and lives the "I can buy Aniplex releases" life. ... more + disclosures



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