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MICHIKO & HATCHIN #12 - - Watch & Learn

This is what happens when animators are forced to draw too much reality...

If we’re keeping an ongoing tally of things MICHIKO & HATCHIN depicts that anime rarely ever covers, then we should definitely go ahead and compliment the show for showing its characters just getting sick some times. Actually, I'd say this is pretty rare for adventure fiction, in general. A Flu, or even a simple head cold, seems to happen on screen less often than all the regular, mundane activities (like eating or going to the bathroom) which are presumably deemed too boring to show most times but - - if used cleverly - - do go a long way in lending some verisimilitude to the characters.

Hell, especially for crime, I think a runny nose goes a long way to both ratchet up the tension and also build further sympathy for your lead. It’s hard enough trying to evade lowlife gangsters when your head doesn’t feel like it’s all gummed up inside, am I right?

Now, to bemusedly speculate on how the crew’s storytelling attitudes might be further shaping this episode…

I do love a good trippy, hallucination sequence - - especially when it’s animated. Of course, when it’s animated in a generally closer-to-Earth series like this, I can’t help but think that it’s fundamentally an excuse for the animators to blow off some steam and satisfy whatever outré artistic impulses they haven’t been allowed to scratch for the previous half-season.

I felt that way about the ‘shrooms episode of SAMURAI CHAMPLOO, and that isn’t coincidental, because MICHIKO & HATCHIN is continuing to feel like a modern version of that show with each passing episode. Especially here, with what seems as much like a NatGeo cartoon featurette on third world quackery as the Japanese baseball and Dutch trade episodes of CHAMPLOO felt like anime programming on the History Channel.

On a less abstract note, I’m always a sucker for seeing characters pick up some tools for a bit of nasty and straight-to-the-point hatchet work. As such, seeing lil’ Hana grab a big ol' steel pipe out of the dump with the intention of teaching Deus a hard lesson in honest billing… well… it tickled my black heart.

Watch this episode, “Purgatory: 108°C Telepathy" here and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.

Tom Pinchuk’s a writer and personality with a large number of comics, videos and features like this to his credit. Visit his website - - tompinchuk.com - - and follow his Twitter: @tompinchuk

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Dig Deeper into Michiko to Hatchin

A free-spirited sexy diva and an abused foster child try to escape from their past lives in what appears to be Brazil.

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