Friday, February 15, 2013

Hidamari Sketch x365 OVA 02

Hidamari Sketch x365 OVA 02 includes the four Hidamari residents, Yoshinoya, the Landlady, Natsume, and a member of the Yamabuki Broadcasting Club, Todo, and introduces Nori and Nazuna in brief non-speaking roles. The first half of the episode focuses on Yuno relearning to ride a bike, and the second half focuses on the Hidamaris relaxing inside in the afternoon.

Scene 1: 00:12 - 00:30
C: Yu
Yuno is awoken by sounds outside. There’s very rarely yuri in these introductory scenes, and this trend continues in this episode.

Scene 2: 00:31 - 01:02
C: Yu, Mi
Yuno and Miyako observe prospective pupils entering Yamabuki to take the entrance exams. Sae and Hiro did much the same in Hidamari Sketch x365 01, but while they used the exams to reflect on their experiences together, Yuno and Miyako merely wish the best for the mixed-gender group of students. Both end at 0.

Scene 3: 01:04 - 02:20
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi
The Hidamaris recount their experiences taking the entrance exams. It’s not the same as usual reminiscing because none of them took their exams together (we know Yuno and Miyako didn’t, and Hiro and Sae’s dialogue suggest they were separate as well), but they are sharing their recollections of a shared experience that prompted similar reactions, so they all get minor levels for empathy. Miyako and Hiro talk about how Chika did well on her exams a few days ago, which embarrasses Sae, possibly since she’s interpreting their comments as being reflections on her, giving her yurilevels for reading compliments to her into their discussion. Yuno then gets a message from a friend named Kiyomi, who looks to be the same girl that was repeatedly staring at Yuno in Hidamari Sketch x365 01 while they were taking their entrance exams. As such, their friendship (which has been largely off-screen, since I can’t remember her ever appearing elsewhere except possibly as a background character) could be based on an interest Kiyomi has in her based on her appearance and mannerisms, and that Yuno consented to such a friendship gives her strong readings. Kiyomi has acquired a bicycle for Yuno, showing that their relationship is a strong one, and Miyako excitedly grabs Yuno’s hand and pulls her toward the door to go collect it, a display of lewd physical intimacy. Yuno ends with 4, Miyako with 3, Hiro with 2, and Sae with 1.

Scene 4: 03:55 - 05:30
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi
The Hidamaris examine their new bicycle and Yuno reveals she cannot remember how to ride a bike. Kiyomi is stated to have given her old bicycle to Yuno upon receiving a new one, which again is strange since, even though they’ve never been seen together, they are good enough friends that Kiyomi is willing to give of herself to Yuno over any other friends she might have. Otherwise, there is little yuri in this scene; while the characters all seem to naturally break into pairs, one of Yuno and Miyako and the other of Hiro and Sae, this is so common in the series and would require too much extrapolations of their motivations that it’s undeserving of yurilevels here. Since Yuno already got her main yurilevels from her friendship with Kiyomi, she gets a 1, while the others stay at 0.

Scene 5: 05:33 - 06:30
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi

The Hidamaris take the bike to the nearby riverbank. Hiro teases Sae about her alleged love life by asking if she ever rode a bike together with someone. Sae hastily responds that she has, and speaks about having a boy’s arms wrapped around her as she pedaled, which is almost certainly a lie as the standard convention is for the boy to pedal and the girl to have her arms wrapped around him (the bumper image closing this sequence suggests that Sae’s only experience riding a bike with another person is having her sister hold on to her while she pedals), displaying a lack of familiarity with heterosexual relationships which gives her a significant increase for the scene. In response, Hiro stifles a laugh, Yuno stares ahead in confusion, and Miyako seems to accept Sae’s story as it is, suggesting she finds nothing objectionable with the reversed gender roles, increasing her yurilevels for the display of openmindedness. Sae ends with 3, Miyako and Hiro with 1, and Yuno with 0.

Scene 6: 06:34 - 10:16
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi
The Hidamaris go to the riverbank. Yuno and Miyako rest next to each other in the grass, with Yuno seeming very relaxed and comfortable, but Miyako quickly leaves to play with young boys, negating anything she received from lying with Yuno. While Sae and Hiro are also present, they only show up briefly and seem to be sitting more than lying, so only Yuno gets yurilevels for this. In a bumper image, however, they are shown to be lying and furthermore sleeping together out in the open, raising everyone’s readings. When the Hidamaris finally get around to teaching Yuno how to ride a bike, Hiro takes the lead, and, in another occurance of the Hidamari family unit motif, she and Yuno act very much like an encouraging mother and her daughter: Hiro gives lots of advice and motivational messages and helps Yuno balance the bike before she starts off, with Yuno reciprocating each time and at one point musing on how sad it is to grow up, suggesting a childlike mental state brought on by her and Hiro’s actions together. One piece of advice that Hiro gives is proven incorrect by Sae, who is aware that Hiro is left-handed, showing a detailed knowledge of Hiro. When Yuno corrects herself, Hiro hangs her head in shame, prompting Sae to place her hand on Hiro’s head to comfort her. Sae gets 2, Miyako gets 1, and Yuno and Hiro each get 3.

Scene 7: 10:24 - 12:47
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi
The Hidamaris eat lunch. There are further familial interactions in this scene: Sae tells Miyako not to spit her soup broth, conveying a parental authority, while Yuno asks Hiro to help making noodles like a child excitedly asks to help her mother. Both give the involved parties moderate readings, so everyone will end above 0. Yuno gets significant yurilevels for her warmth toward the other Hidamaris in opening her bicycle for general use by the others and in thanking them for accompanying her to the riverside on a day off from school; she gets a large boost while the others get smaller ones as side readings for going with her in the first place. Finally, Hiro praises Sae on her reflexes for learning to ride a bike at a young age, but Sae’s reluctance to accept her compliments prevents her from getting yurilevels on par with Hiro’s. Yuno and Hiro end with 3, Sae with 2, and Miyako with 1.

Scene 8: 12:47 - 14:35
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi, Todo
Todo asks the Hidamaris for an interview. While this initially seems very yuri (after all, why single the otherwise mundane Hidamari tenants out for an interview unless there is some underlying interest?), Todo gives her reason as being that she wants to help new students since she’s about to graduate, asking the Hidamaris for help since they have a reputation for being weird even for art students. As such, her interest in them is not yuri as much as it is gawking, so Todo receives no initial yurilevels for conducting the interview. Miyako remembers that she is the same person who ran the announcements at the Yamabuki athletic day, suggesting she has paid close attention either to Todo or her fellow female students in general, and either way getting an increase in her yurilevels. When Todo says that the Hidamaris are seen as strange, Sae singles out as explanation her former neighbor Misato, which Todo mentions having heard of; since they are both describing her in unflattering terms, neither one receives readings. Miyako then initiates a moment of reminiscing about the silica gel packets in her floorboards, which the other Hidamaris join in on, giving all of them slight increases. Todo is left in wonder at their death-defying experiences, but whether or not this is yuri admiration is unclear. She gets a 1 for the possibility, while Miyako gets 2 and the other Hidamaris end with 1.

Scene 9: 14:40 - 15:20
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi
Todo leaves and the Hidamaris and Miyako asks Hiro for snacks. Nothing here is specifically yuri, but Yuno and Miyako give off a friendly air that gives them each a 1.

Scene 10: 15:21 - 16:31
C: Sa, Nt
Sae starts toward Berry Mart but stops to help Natsume. While they initially start arguing as usual, the scene shifts when Natsume says she has to return a napkin to one of the exam students. Sae offers Natsume a ride to the station on her bike so she can find the student, which makes Natsume freeze up in bashfulness. After a more commanding repeat of her offer, Natsume uncomfortably gets on the bike, but still needs to be told to hold on to Sae. As they ride off, Sae looks onward, focused on going to the station, while Natsume’s world dissolves around her into bubbles, pastels, ribbons, and cheerful piano music. Though it’s not externally visible, aside from a slightly larger than usual blush, the other symbols in the scene convey that Natsume is very happy about getting to have such close contact with Sae, and she gets a 4. Sae, for her friendly offer of aid, gets a 1.
Also worth noting is that this scene briefly shows Nori and Nazuna walking away from the school, their first appearances in Hidamari Sketch. While they don’t contribute to the scene and aren’t tracked here, it’s interesting to note that Nori is wearing a suit and tie while Nazuna is wearing a pink scarf, suggesting that when they appear they may form a masculine-feminine dynamic like Sae and Hiro have. I look forward to their introductions.

Scene 11: 16:33 - 17:40
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi
Sae returns with snacks. Hiro asks about why Sae took so long and what Sae was doing with Natsume, a show of interest in Sae’s affairs that leaves her with a 2 for the scene. Sae gets minor side yurilevels for going along, and combined with her bringing snacks she gets a 1. Yuno and Miyako stay at 0.

Scene 12: 17:42 - 18:31
C: Yu, Mi, Yo
Yuno and Miyako go outside and see Yoshinoya. Upon noticing her, they call to her and run to the other side of the street, giving them stronger readings for wanting to see her outside of school. Yoshinoya does not seem particularly pleased to see them, staying at a consistent mood throughout, so she does not get reciprocal readings. Yuno and Miyako each end with 2, Yoshinoya with 0.

Scene 13: 18:31 -18:54
C: Yo
Yoshinoya and the principal talk in the hall. She doesn’t convey any yuri here and ends with 0.

Scene 14: 18:57 - 19:27
C: Yu, Mi
Yuno and Miyako sit alone in the dark in Yuno’s bedroom. Yuno refers to them collectively getting new juniors soon, referring to it as something her and Miyako will go through together and thus conveying a bond that can withstand change and possible adversity, and says she wants to treat them like Sae and Hiro treated her and Miyako, which is a positive appraisal and thus gets her levels for complimenting them. Her apprehension that she’ll fail to live up to Sae and Hiro’s standard is only partly assuaged by Miyako’s assurance that she’ll be a good sempai, so while Miyako gets moderate yurilevels for trying to cheer her up Yuno gets rather limited side yurilevels from it. Both end with 3.

Scene 15: 19:27 - 20:05
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi, La
The Landlady visits Hidamari Apartments. She is moving Hiro’s exercise items out of Room 203, which are shown to include an exercise DVD closely resembling the ecchi OVA “Training with Hinako,” giving Hiro very high readings for buying and consuming such lewd media. The Hidamaris seem troubled by the thought of the Landlady carrying everything on her moped by herself, and agree to carry some of it on the bike. They each get 1 for their concern, with Hiro getting 3 (since she could have actually used the DVD for exercising), while the Landlady gets a 0 for staying focused on her own issues and showing minimal care for the Hidamaris.

Scene 16: 20:08 - 20:59
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi, La
The Hidamaris help the Landlady move items. The Landlady assumes the bike is Sae’s, but this is most likely because Sae is pushing the bike and not because the Landlady considers bicycling a masculine activity and thus associates it with Sae. She then heavily implies to the to the Hidamaris that she would like to have a bike, although they aren’t shown to give it to her and Yuno uses it later, so nobody gets the same sort of levels they received in the previous scene for refusing to give the Landlady that particular bit of help. Sae and the Landlady end with 1 each for the ambiguity, while the others get 0s.

Scene 17: 21:05 - 21:26
C: Yu
Yuno thinks about what she can do with the bike. She considers going to the bathhouse but does not think about going with the others, so she doesn’t get yurilevels for it. Overall, she stays at 0.

Scene 18: 21:39 - 22:07
C: Yu, Mi, Sa, Hi
Yuno joins with Miyako, Sae, and Hiro after parking her bike. Sae asks Miyako why Yuno isn’t with her, showing that Yuno and Miyako not walking to school together is an anomaly that needs to be explained, and Miyako explains, showing that Sae is correct. They each get 2, Hiro and Yuno stay at 0.

Final Yurilevel Readings: (both Aokis and Umes are out of 4):
Episode: 1.4650A

  1. Natsume: 4.000U
  2. Hiro: 1.794U
  3. Yuno: 1.739U
  4. Sae: 1.381U
  5. Miyako: 1.147U
  6. Todo: 1.000U
  7. Landlady: 0.573U
  8. Yoshinoya: 0.000U

This episode had a series of long scenes in the first half that significantly raised the overall readings, with the first seven scenes composing nearly two-thirds of the overall yurilevel count for the episode. Yuno and Hiro in particular had high readings in these scenes, and ended with very strong showings in the character rankings, beaten only by Natsume’s third 4.0 Ume reading (impressive, but expected). Miyako had the lowest readings of the Hidamaris for getting low readings in these scenes, while Sae fared comparatively poorly for the same reason.
Because of the rapidly approaching end of Hidamari Sketch x365 and the imminent beginning of xHoshimittsu, future Hidamaris Nori and Nazuna were teased in this episode, and their introductions next season is sure to make for new and interesting dynamics. My current hypothesis is that they will be about as gay as the other Hidamaris, which, due to the calculation of scene readings (sum of character readings divided by number of characters), could end up not raising yurilevels even though an increase has always been presumed. On the other hand, everyone could get significantly gayer, and since xHoshimittsu hasn’t actually begun to be analyzed it’s still too early to say if they will; my memory suggests they might, but I can’t remember particular instances where anyone is notably yuri (which is actually very good for the investigation, since it’s equivalent to watching everything the first time and thus reduces the chance of confirmation bias in the analysis).

Further analysis will continue with Hidamari Sketch x365 OVA 03.

2/17/2013: Removed notice that subtitles were by Nutbladder, since this was the intended subtitling for the Season 2 OVAs.
2/26/2013: A tabulation error originally gave Hiro a reading of 1.827 Umes when she should have received 1.794 Umes. This has been corrected.

No comments:

Post a Comment