Mahjong – 4


Let’s be honest. There’s only one mahjong anime people are watching this season. I don’t need to tell you it’s still Saki: Actual Second Season do I? Also, silly Touka standing up like it was 1990s. That doesn’t mean anything, since the year and her posture has nothing to do with mahjong, except in the fringe case that you need lumbar support for your lower back while you mahjong. Thus, during the 1990s, one group of people spearheaded the industry of ergonomic commercial sector chairs. I have no idea where I’m going with this. Nor do I know the name of this group, should they still be around.

There’s something about Saki that seems to avoid a strange pitfall of the typical shonen-esque build ups. The game of mahjong is very much about significant parts of chance, luck, and skill. You could argue that at a baseline of skill, chance and luck are the only things that will carry the game forward. Some bizarre ability to land special yakuman everywhere, or that after two riichi sticks are in play, your chances to hit tenpai skyrocket will happen. Probably true. But the higher the character/player skill (in respect to the Sakiverse), luck tends to take a backseat and chance becomes a mutable object (I’m looking at you, Saki). It’s like some sort of magical system of checks and balances; having strength in one area has another being pulled along, while the last third languishes in the gutter. Until it’s broken beyond imagination by some unexpected 13+ han hand..

These crazy girls third portion does not even seem to languish at the bottom at all. You know, like: “My weakness is not a weakness! It is a lure for your lack of insight! Have at you, meatsack!” Very shonen like. It also helps that many veteran animators of shonen combat scenes have worked on Saki.

In any case, Tomoki is hawt and Touka is still voiced by Chihara Minori. I can’t get enough of that “Oh ho ho” — quite an exquisite ojou-sama laugh.

Studio Gokumi (the producers of the current Saki season), I thank you. Saki still manages to be a mahjong anime that reminds me that I can still enjoy a shonen-esque build up. Although it seems like I’ve been horribly poisoned beyond normal capacitance. No longer can I watch an actual shonen anime with men unless it’s over the top like Kill la Kill or JoJo’s Bizzard Adventure.

Some people might think, due to past evidence, that I’d be harumphing about Tomoki. While Hajime and Touka are top-tier DFC, Tomoki has some major Office Lady going on. Insane potential. Glasses. Dat skirt.

I also just now realized that Touka’s pose in the screencap provided could be shopped into a bowling alley without problems.

Mahjong – 4

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