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Ep.2: Shigure picks up the mail (roughs)
Source: TV
Layers: 1
Sketches: 3
Cel Number: 3
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Added 9/27/2018
Updated 6/28/2019
Episode 2, cut 9. Through an accident that was bound to happen, Tohru witnesses all three Sohmas transform into their animal forms. Then the doorbell rings: it’s the postman delivering a registered letter for Shigure. Carrying the three zodiac animals with her in a panic, Tohru answers the door but has no idea what to do. Shigure, though, has the presence of mind to accept the letter, reaching up and gently taking it from the carrier in his teeth.

This sketch set included both the rough and genga versions of this cut, along with a large number of genzu or conceptual sketches incorporating some discussion among studio members about how this brief cut should work. Featured here is the end keyframe in the rough version, with two of these conceptual alternatives in the thumbnails.

This is a simple reanimation of this with its two fellows: you can see that the first version was relatively simple. Shigure simply raises his dog head and gently takes the letter, looking as benign as he possibly can.

However, this obviously didn’t pass muster, and the clutch of colored-paper genzu show the team working toward something that would capture this little moment a little more realistically. (One imagines them offering something similar to a real dog and taking notes on how the beast really would accept it.)


Episode 2, a canonical story familiar to many manga enthusiasts, was directed by Housei Suzuki (鈴木 芳成), a veteran of Full Moon o Sagashite (and soon to do episode direction for Vampire Knight. Suzuki also directed episodes 6 and 10 of Fruits Basket.

Episode animation direction was credited to “Tateru Namikaze” (波風立流), but Japanside websites indicate that this is a pseudonym for an experienced and wide-ranging animator, Takashi Sokabe (曽我部 孝). Sokabe began in the 1980s with the classic anime series Urusei Yatsura (gengas) and contributed to the Lupin franchise, to Saint Seiya (gengas) and to Utena (storyboards). Graduating to the episode animation directing role in 2000 with Boys be Boys Sokabe has continued to work in this capacity (both in his own name and under various pseudonyms) in a number of high-visibility series, including Cromartie High School, Getbackers, Maria-sama Watches over Us (both seasons), Vandread, Hakaba Kitaro, Yu-Gi-Oh, and Fate / stay night . Sokabe also collaborated with Director Suzuki on Episode 6 of this series.

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