Jubei-chan - Secret of the Lovely Eyepatch
Madhouse Productions + Original Story by Akitaro Daichi

The Details: From the same quirky director as Fruits Basket and Kodomo no Omocha (the latter is my favourite of the 3, but I don't have any cels) comes this pile of wackiness and dramatic mood swings. It was the first one I saw, and the reason I watched the others. It is about as lovable as can be, with both extreme humour and sudden darkness.

Most of the characters are great in their own ways. Some are greater than others. My clear favourite is Koinosuke. My favourite story aspects are the relationship between him and Nanohana Jiyu (Jubei-chan), and the dynamic between them and Nanohana Sai (Jiyu's father). Simple things like (around episode 2, it's been a while) Sai slithering up to the thinking chair Koinosuke inadvertently stole from him and then Koinosuke deciding on an egg concept brought plenty of joy and laughter to my previously(?) foul black heart.

Possibly needless to say I didn't care a lot for Jubei-chan 2 and you won't find anything from that series here. What's the point without Koinosuke?! (Ok, it did have some cute bits... and I'm really just snivelling from a broken heart.)

And so with that thought I begin this section with a 5 cel set of Koinosuke drying up and dying. Don't worry, he does it often. Simply throw a little water on him and he'll be okay! These 5 cels will be a SPOILER if you haven't seen the second half of episode 1. In which case, you should get to it! It's only 13 episodes, and a definite gem of a bizarro show!

Episode #: 1: The Birth of Yagyu Jubei II
Stats: 2 layers, unstuck, A16/B9 (both) KEY
Sketches: 2 matching, unstuck
Comments: Technical detail: B9 is the mouth layer. There's a little problem Koinosuke occasionally has. Sometimes it happens because he feels despondent in his mission, sometimes he just plain randomly dries up, and, in this case, he thought his job was done and therefore he was too. You need to first contemplate what would happen to a body that's 300 years old. It would not be in good condition, to say the least. As a samurai, even if he is prone toward being a wimpy one, Koinosuke's dedication to serving the final request of his master is about all that keeps him glued together. I found this cel when he's announcing to Jiyu that she must now refer to herself as Yagyu Jubei II. She then watches him as he explains her new position, and something scary (it's obviously disturbing her) begins to happen. The audience hears a weird crackly scrunchy noise, and then...
Episode #: 1: The Birth of Yagyu Jubei II
Stats: 1 layer, A16
Sketches: none
Comments: The next stage is that he suddenly turns old. Well, that's not so bad. This part was flickering so fast, between his present appearance and the beginning of aging, that I'm having a hard time feeling 100% certain that I spotted this cel in the right place. I am at least highly certain that it's right by the beginning, when we start seeing what Jiyu is seeing. Only the sketches are marked as key cels, so I can't tell if the sketch free ones are. The quality seems consistent, at the least.
Episode #: 1: The Birth of Yagyu Jubei II
Stats: 1 layer, A24
Sketches: matching, unstuck
Comments: And then the process gets worse. Much worse. In this cel and the next 2 you'll see a lot of marks and specks. That isn't dirty cel, that's his hair and clothes beginning to disintegrate. His body continues to age more and more. Dessicating, wrinkling, losing teeth...
Episode #: 1: The Birth of Yagyu Jubei II
Stats: 1 layer, A22
Sketches: none
Comments: The last 2 cels are a big jump ahead to the end of the process. It's a long process, with a lot of cels, and a lot of flashing back and forth and here and there in his appearance, but it all flies by very quickly in real time. Here he's finally reaching the end of the rapid aging. His hair and skin both solidly grey, and everything continues to disintegrate.
Episode #: 1: The Birth of Yagyu Jubei II
Stats: 2 layers, A32 KEY & A32F (FX outline layer)
Sketches: 1 matching, unstuck (A32 KEY)
Comments: And so it ends (almost). This is very shortly before he deflates and flies off. Luckily for us he lands in the nearby stream and life goes on. Equally luckily, his mission wasn't as over as he thought it was anyway. Yeah, this is the character I so greatly adore. What can I say.

Back to my Cel Index.
Back to Okiayu Ryoutarou.