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Asatte no Hōkō 3: Episode 7

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Preparing to Make Hiro-nii’s Birthday Cake
Source: TV
Layers: 1
Sketches: 2
Cel Number: A1 B1 C1 D1
Oversize, 29.5W x 31.5H

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Added 11/14/2010
Updated 11/9/2014
Episode 7: cut 147. Today is Hiro’s birthday, and Karada impishly plans to surprise him with a cake when he returns home. Things don’t begin well, though, when she realizes that she doesn’t actually know how to bake a cake, and Shōko is little help, as she is as totally incompetent in the kitchen now as she was when she was a grown-up.

But Karada is nothing if not determined: she checks out “How to Bake Your First Cake” from the local library, and then seemingly buys out half the grocery store (because Shōko’s kitchen doesn’t even have any cooking implements). Here she’s busily memorizing the recipe before starting.

This episode is one of my favorites. One fully expects the result to be a disaster, since Karada is understandably tentative and Shōko is inept in every possible culinary way. And yet the two work together well. Karada is actually an intuitive chef, who understands how the recipe ought to work, while Shōko's confidence in her partner’s abilities pushes the project forward.

The cake preparation (intercut with Shōko’s memories of a turkey dinner of hers that went straight into the trash) is a magical moment in this series. It shows how the star-crossed pair have become close friends, in spite of the age reversal. This creates a warm, domestic feeling that, in turn perfectly sets up the chilling plot reversal at the very end of the episode, which the audience knew was bound to come, sooner or later.

The cake turns out very well indeed ... alas, all too well in the end.

Caution! Fussy Notes

This relatively simple sketch set was generously oversized (295 x 315) and included a full complement of sketches: the fine A1 B1 C1 D1 genga featured above, plus Masahiro Fujii’s complete rough (“Yoroshiku onegaishimasu”) and Ikuko Ito’s partial shuusei (“T⅔”) in the thumbnail.

The set also had a blown-up image from the storyboard taped to a big sheet of paper, an oversized genzu on pink paper, a mostly blank oversized sheet showing where the table top would be, a C3 (mouth layer) genga on standard sized paper, one post-genga shuusei (light-salmon paper, standard size) and six dougas. Three were oversized: (A1, ingredients on the table), B1 (Karada), and D1 (chair), while three were standard sized: C1-3 (mouth layers).

More work than you might think! Almost as much work as went into that birthday cake!

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Curator: 60something-sensei
Gallery Created: 8/3/2002
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