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Asatte no Hōkō 3: Episode 7

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Shōko Describes Her Boyfriend to Karada
Source: TV
Layers: 1
Sketches: 3
Cel Number: A1 END
Oversize, 10.5W x 12H

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Added 1/26/2012
Updated 11/9/2014
Cut 112. Oblivious of the danger, Karada asks if she had a boyfriend. “I did,” Shōko admits. “What was he like?” the grown-up girl asks innocently. “He was self-centered,” her companion replies in a gentle, uncritical way, “and dishonest and insensitive as well.” But her distant look and gentle smile belie the harshness of her words. And a flash cut to Hiro at his job down town reminds us that in another world and another time the two were lovers.

This A1 END image with simple mouth layers was worked out in the usual careful way, with a layout, a pink-paper genzu suggesting a change in Shōko’s posture, a rough on light-salmon paper, and a shuusei rough on light-green paper. This became the basis for the A1 genga (a separate genga worked out the shut-lips mouth layer), and was touched up with a shuusei genga on light salmon paper. There were just three dougas, an A1 with shut lips, plus two B-level mouth layers. As the cut was planned, it included a slight pan up. As it was not clear just how far this would go, the sketches vary from 9” to 10” tall.

They are all very pretty, but I’ve featured the light-green shuusei rough, the work of the senior animation director, Ikuko Itō. (Notice the distinctive “T⅔” shuusei label.) It is among the very best of the sketches I’ve gotten for this well-produced series, and one of my all-time favorite anime art sketches. The thumbs add the layout (a little too glum) and the final douga (exactly right!)

The changes among the other sketches are, on the whole, very subtle, mainly dealing with how much to let Shōko smile and giving her just a hint of an adult bust in the front of her dress by accenting the fold in the middle. The effect is very subtle but does the trick: it reminds us that this little girl remembers the pleasures of being a woman.

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