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Asatte no Hōkō 1: Episodes 1-2

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Karada at the Wishing Shrine
Source: TV
Layers: 1
Sketches: 3
Cel Number: A5, A8
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Added 5/21/2018
Updated 5/21/2018
Episode 1, cut 10. The cold open for this opening episode follows a young woman who is biking into the outskirts of Kanocho, the small town where the action is set. She encounters a little girl praying earnestly at a wayside shrine. Amused at how intense she looks, she stops and asks what she is praying for. In this cut, Karada (for it is she, we soon learn) stops and looks back at the stranger. With a hint of a smile, she lifts her finger to her lips and replies, “It’s a secret!”

This was a surprisingly complicated short cut, for the animation not only handles the dapples of sunlight on Karada’s hair and body, but the way her hair continues to move after she turns her face, then rebounds. All told, this short scene required seven A-level keyframes of Karada, plus nine more for the ovals of sunlight. That translated to 20 A-level dougas for Karada’s body and hair, 2 B-levels for mouth layers, and 34 C-levels for the shifting sunlight.

I’ve selected only two of these keyframes: featured above is the genga for the A5 that ends cut 10. The dougas are partial at this moment, with Karada’s hair on a separate layer, but they are complete up to this point, so I add the complete A8 douga in the first thumbnail. Sadly, this sketch set did not include the layouts and roughs, but it did preserve a full set of A-level genga shuuseis. These are on light green paper, and from this and from the distinctive way in which the artist wrote the sequence numbers, I believe these are by this episode’s senior animation director, Ikuko Itō. The one for the A5 keyframe is added in the second thumb, scanned against the genga to provide reference.

The cold open for the concluding Episode 12 visually refers back to this cut, though the action in this sequence is subtly different and had to be reanimated. Nevertheless, the exact same background was recycled for this Ep. 12 cut, and that sketch set, like this one, came with a photocopy of the art board. (You can see this photocopy in the thumbnail of this page.) As the notes on the photocopy point out, the exact same setting and perspective, rendered in deep moonlit darkness, will also be used near the very ending of Ep. 1.

A simple, but crucial moment in this story!

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Curator: 60something-sensei
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