Ah, young love. Is there anything more beautiful than young love? Well, maybe an ice-cold bottle of a long-necked Teutonic brew on a painfully hot day, but that’s just me. And I haven’t had young love in a long time. I remember, in my youth, when I was young and a youth and….ahem! Back to the review of “Tamako Market”.
Tamako Kitashirakawa (second from left) is the eldest daughter of a family who runs a mochi shop in the Usagiyama Shopping District. One day, Tamako encounters a strange talking bird named Dera Mochimazzi (I assume you can find that one) who comes from a distant land, searching for a bride for his country’s prince. After becoming overweight from eating too much mochi (a bird who’s a pig?), Dera ends up becoming a freeloader in Tamako’s home. The series follows the everyday life of Tamako, her friends, family and neighbors, and this peculiar bird.
Seems simple enough, right? Ha, ha, ha! How long have you been watching anime romantic comedies? Don’t be ridiculous. Of COURSE there will be complications. One of those complications is Mochizō. Nope he’s not up there. He is a childhood friend of Tamako. His father not only runs a mochi shop as well, but they are right across from one another in this shopping district. Needless to say, dads are rivals (no, we completely avoid that Romeo and Juliet mess) and sometimes hurl insults at each other across the street.
When Tamako is not busy making mochi with her family or talking to Mochizo across the street with a string phone (Gad! Does anyone even remember the concept of string phones?), she is with her baton club. Two of her friends, up there with her, are Midori Tokiwa (blondie on the right) and Kanna Makino (ginger on the left). Another member/friend is Shiori Asagiri (not pictured. You do not know how hard it was to get a good pic of the bulk of them!). Yeah, those things slung about them are baton cases, not samurai swords.
Things get complicated when Choi Mochimazzi (that’s her holding Dera) has to show up, because Dera is not doing his job. Well, eating all that mochi made him fat and he lost the power to fly, so he’s taking an extended rest stop here, as he continues to dine on mochi. Choi, a sister to Prince Mecha, needs to know how the hunt for a bride is coming along, and the report is not all that good. The series breaks into two parts: the first part is Dera with his proposal and how that part of their lives plays out amid love and mochi and the second is the arrival of Choi and how that complicates matters into getting things back on track amid love and mochi.
Again, it is another slight show, in the fact that you were pretty well assured what the outcome was going to be once you heard the reason for this quest. I stayed for it as I liked all the quirky shop owners. They are all very nice people and there is no animosity between them (except for the two mochi stores) as they know that, as a business district, they all have to work together and there is no direct competition. I mean, the florist doesn’t have to worry that I’ll give the wife a halibut bouquet for her birthday from the fishmonger, right? But they just served as more of the oddities that make up how Tamako looks at life.
The series doesn’t end and there is a movie that purports to conclude everything (a review on that comes later), so, for the nonce, we will let them carry on with their lives.
On a scale of 1 to 10:
Artwork 7 (The eyes were just too big)
Plot 7 (Rather typical)
Pacing 7 (Sometimes too languid)
Effectiveness 7 (Telegraphed far too soon)
Conclusion 7 (It reaches a ‘coupler point’, but hasn’t ended)
Fan Service 1 (A similar show would be “Ouran High School”)
Overall 7 (Still rather slight)
And remember, it’s first run until you’ve seen it. More mochi?