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First Impressions: Oregairu Zoku (Episode 1 + Overall Adaptation Thoughts)

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Pretty good stuff. First episode of Oregairu S2 covered the first six chapters of volume 7. Judging by the preview at the end of the episode, episode 2 will cover the rest of the volume.

I doubt I’ll be blogging about every episode, so I’ll just post some brief thoughts about this episode and the adaptation in general.

As I hoped, the anime skipped a lot of scenes in the LN. Don’t listen to the LN readers complaining about the cut scenes. Some of them are amusing, but they are still utterly irrelevant. Including them would have made the anime feel much more tedious, because despite the art upgrade, most of the episode consisted of talking heads. The missing ramen scene felt blatant, though. (SEE END OF POST FOR A TRANSLATION.) Otherwise, good job, series composition dude (Shotaro Suga, fyi).

I think that in general the anime is superior to the LN. I spent over half a year translating the LNs, and at this point I feel like I know them inside out. There is a lot of superfluous crap in the LNs. The anime took what was great about the LNs and made it shine.

The intra-episode pacing in the anime really works. The episode builds two stories simultaneously: Tobe’s quest for Hina’s love, which serves as a comedic foil to the more understated story of Hachiman and Yukino’s relationship after the school festival arc. Every scene in the episode builds up to that strained moment at the ending, where Hachiman and Yukino awkwardly part ways, realising perhaps for the first time that they have become too close for comfort. The school trip is a time for romance – well, at least in anime it is. In his awareness of this, Tobe actively tries to become close to Hina, while Hachiman and Yukino retreat from each other yet again.

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As amusing as the cut scenes from the LN are, they would have detracted from the main focus of the episode. I’m not looking for a page-by-page adaptation from Oregairu Zoku. I’m just looking for a good story. If you want the behind-the-scenes stuff, you can read the LN later.

Still, the anime’s habit of cutting stuff did come back to bite them in the bum later when it referenced the scene where Tobe first admitted that he likes Hina. I do recommend you read this scene in full because it contains important foreshadowing for this episode and later events (translation here).

Speaking of translations, Commie’s translation of this episode was pretty snappy for the most part. I really like how they translated Tobe’s slang. Still, be warned that the script is not entirely accurate to the Japanese. As much as I prefer liberal translations that capture the intent of the original over stiff, literal translations, this scene in particular struck me as flat out wrong:

vlcsnap-2015-04-03-20h37m05s76What is a ‘subottom’ even supposed to mean? A sasoiuke is supposed to be an uke character that “invites” the seme to “attack” him. You could work this out from context, but in any case Hina doesn’t talk very much like an authentic fujoshi in their translation of this scene.

Man, I know that most fansub groups are sausage fests, but Commie really needs to brush up on their fujoshi slang :P

There were other lines I would personally have translated differently, but I honestly don’t mind Commie’s overall approach.

(EDIT: FFF has a better translation of this particular scene, though still a bit awkward.)

tldr; I approve of the principles behind the adaptation and the translation. Don’t take the purists too seriously.

Miscellaneous Observations

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Get your friendzone bullshit outta here, 8man

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DOKI INTENSIFIES

vlcsnap-2015-04-03-20h53m00s152Hayama best guy. You heard it from me first. I feel like Hina is channelling me at this moment

In conclusion, the new Oregairu anime is good. I’m kinda burnt out on the series after working on it for so long, so I probably won’t cover each episode unless you guys really want me to. I’m still as big a fan of this series as ever, though!

(Also, not to blow my own horn or anything, but draggle had the best opinions about this episode.)

Addendum: The Ramen Scene

Here is a fresh translation of the ramen scene – or, to be more precise, the conversation afterwards between Hiratsuka-sensei and her students that was severely cut down in the anime.

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“I question whether a teacher should be doing this.”

Hiratsuka-sensei remained calm despite my words. “Of course not. That’s why I’m paying for your silence.”

“Isn’t that even less appropriate for a teacher…?” Yukinoshita said dubiously.

But Ms. Hiratsuka went on eating, unperturbed. In fact, she seemed more at ease than ever.

“Teachers are human too. The same goes for all adults. We make mistakes. Whether we realise it or not.”

“Won’t you get reprimanded if you’re caught?”

If that happened, I’d probably get dragged into it as well, though.

“Not in the least. They’d just call me in as a formal measure and let me off with a slap on the wrist.”

“I wonder if that can really be considered reprimanding…” Yukinoshita said. I couldn’t help but agree with her.

Hiratsuka-sensei drained the remaining soup in her bowl and wiped her mouth neatly with a napkin. With that, she turned to face us.

“It’s different. Being ordered not to create problems and being asked to fix them are completely different things.”

“I don’t see how,” I said.

“…indeed. I wonder if it’s because I’ve never been reprimanded.” Yukinoshita pressed her lightly clenched fingers against her chin, deep in recollection.

Hiratsuka-sensei watched her do all of this and nodded solemnly. “I see, then I won’t let you off easy. I was planning to scold you quite thoroughly but it looks like I was being too soft.”

“No, that’s quite all right.” I waved my hands in polite refusal. If she inflicted any more damage on my body, I’d become damaged goods, and then she’d have to woman up and take me for a groom. Huh, not a bad idea…

As I agonised over various things, Yukinoshita sat nonplussed beside me. “I don’t mind. I’ve never really done anything worth being scolded over.”

“Yukinoshita, being scolded isn’t a bad thing. It’s proof that someone’s watching out for you.”

Yukinoshita’s shoulders dropped slightly upon hearing Hiratsuka-sensei’s words. She lowered her head and cast her eyes down. She seemed to be fixated on the floor for no reason I was aware of.

Gently, Hiratsuka-sensei patted Yukinoshita on the shoulder.

“I’m watching out for you, so make as many mistakes as you like.”

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Posted on April 3, 2015, in Reviews and Impressions and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 25 Comments.

  1. Nah, Commie like the series and the translation is pretty faithful. Trust me. I’ve seen how they translate stuff they DON’T like.

  2. First of all, thank you for translating the novels. I too am a novel reader, and to be honest I too am not really bothered by the stuff they cut – it’s still a very good anime, and I suspect anime-only watchers won’t notice anything is wrong. By the way, I’m going to mention some novel spoilers (I’ll keep it from being too specific, but just in case) so just skip the rest if you haven’t read the book.

    SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER

    Honestly, as you said the only jarring part they cut is just the ramen date. The rest is honestly pretty superfluous and can be cut without affecting the plot, especially since they -DO keep the stuff that is plot related. For instance, the part from around 09:10-09:18 may seem like just additional part of the usual Hikki flashback, but honestly the whole plot of the volume could be summed up in that exchange. They make it less obvious without Hachiman’s narration, but at least they show him observing Hayama and how his face change, and I’m pretty sure anime-only watchers will connect the dots later in hindsight so it’s nice that it’s there. There are also other parts like in 03:12-03:14 where Yumiko is observing Yui approaching Hachiman, and Hachiman noticing that in response.

    Really, the only thing I’m worried about is how they’ll do the entirety of season 2 if they keep season 1 pacing, since they obviously has less material than they did last season, but that’s in the future. For the time being though, the episode itself is great and still keeps what makes season 1 amazing.

    SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER

    • Yeah, I think the anime did a great job making the emotions more understated. S2 will have a lot of rewatch value when all is said and done.

      Like you, I hope they don’t rush everything, of course. But volume 7 was pretty light on actual content, so I don’t mind. In S1, the anime dedicated more episodes to episode 6 because it was such a key turning point, so I very much suspect volumes 8-9 (which are equally if not more important) will be covered more fully.

      • True, I’m rereading the novels again adn there’s a lot fluff that can be removed for ease. Of course, vol 8-9 is much more serious and full of drama that there’s no way it can be done with anything less than 3 episodes, possibly even four. Problem is, even if they give four for each that still leaves about 2-3 episodes left (as vol 7 seems to be over by next episode, judging by the preview) so I think that there’s no way they won’t include vol 10. Which is fine enough, but vol 9 is still the best place to end the season imo, ending of vol 10 is really nothing compared to it.

  3. Is it me or Yukino seems smile more often this time around? And by that I mean a genuine happy smile, not a snark smile.

    While I do know about Hachiman attraction to Yukino, I don’t seem to notice their growing relationship though.

    • I think the last volume (so episode 10-12) leads to great development to Yukino’s character. At least to the members of the service club, she became much more open and closer. Seeing her smile is one thing, but small things like offering Hachiman tea or standing up for him against Tobe is also something you won’t see from her in episode 1. It’s not just Hachiman too – she’s also closer to Yui, even Hachiman notes how she’s much weaker against Yui’s whims this episode.

  4. After all the complaints I saw, reading your first impressions is very refreshing. I also expected them skip a lot of content but don’t mind since I’m sure they’ll keep the most important ones. I just hope that they don’t adapt the 10th volume, because ending the anime with the 9th volume (or 6.5 as an OVA like last time) would be the best choice for a proper conclusion.
    We won’t force you to review every episode, but write something once in while, OK? We’ll gladly read anything you’ll have to say about the 2nd season :)

    PS: Thank you for your hard work on the translation. I’ve never translated a whole book but damn it must’ve been a lot harder than I imagine, so… thank you.

    • Hmm, after some thinking, I decided to update this post with my own translation of what I thought was the most important scene the anime left out. I think I might do that for the other episodes if a glaring omission strikes me. I think anime-only viewers would like to know what they’re missing while not necessarily wanting to read the entire novel.

  5. Yahallo! Great to see Oregairu back on the airwaves. My favourite part of the episode was when Yukino’s pride forced her to go over and talk to Hachiman in the hotel lobby.

    I watched FFF’s translation and that scene you’re referring to about the ‘subottom’ was indeed translated differently. They framed it as Hina encouraging Hiki to ‘take in people’ and then the line was ‘I want you to take in lots of people. A whole butt load.’ I have no idea how faithful that is compared to Commies switches but I felt it carried the double entendre across pretty effectively.

    Oh also, would you say the Ramen scene is worth reading? I assume it’s around, chapter 5 of volume 7?

    • The ramen scene is in chapter 6. I consider it worth reading. Because I’m nice, I’ve translated it specifically for your convenience here:

      “I question whether a teacher should be doing this.”

      Hiratsuka-sensei remained calm despite my words.

      “Of course not. That’s why I’m paying for your silence.”

      “Isn’t that even less appropriate for a teacher…?” Yukinoshita said dubiously.

      But Ms. Hiratsuka went on eating, unperturbed. In fact, she seemed more at ease than ever.

      “Teachers are human too. The same goes for all adults. We make mistakes. Whether we realise it or not.”

      “Won’t you get reprimanded if you’re caught?”

      If that happened, I’d probably get dragged into it as well, though.

      “Not in the least. They’d just call me in as a formal measure and let me off with a slap on the wrist.”

      “I wonder if that can really be considered reprimanding…” Yukinoshita said. I couldn’t help but agree with her.

      Hiratsuka-sensei drained the remaining soup in her bowl and wiped her mouth neatly with a napkin. With that, she turned to face us.

      “It’s different. Being ordered not to create problems and being asked to fix them are completely different things.”

      “I don’t see how,” I said.

      “…indeed. I wonder if it’s because I’ve never been reprimanded.” Yukinoshita pressed her lightly clenched fingers against her chin, deep in recollection.

      Hiratsuka-sensei watched her do all of this and nodded solemnly. “I see, then I won’t let you off easy. I was planning to scold you quite thoroughly but it looks like I was being too soft.”

      “No, that’s quite all right.” I waved my hands in polite refusal. If she inflicted any more damage on my body, I’d become damaged goods, and then she’d have to woman up and take me for a groom. Huh, not a bad idea…

      As I agonised over various things, Yukinoshita sat nonplussed beside me. “I don’t mind. I’ve never really done anything worth being scolded over.”

      “Yukinoshita, being scolded isn’t a bad thing. It’s proof that someone’s watching out for you.”

      Yukinoshita’s shoulders dropped slightly upon hearing Hiratsuka-sensei’s words. She lowered her head and cast her eyes down. She seemed to be fixated on the floor for no reason I was aware of.

      Gently, Hiratsuka-sensei patted Yukinoshita on the shoulder.

      “I’m watching out for you, so make as many mistakes as you like.”

      So yes, the scene in the LN felt more articulated and more natural in context.

  6. Well well welll…Oregairu is a real eye catch huh? Everyone everywhere talks about it…
    Overall I really like how S2 is made except for some deleted scenes i wanted to see. Like the talk in ramen night date…. Most of the other deleted scenes are fine tho. Its not like we really need em…
    Btw, is it just me or Yukino looks more… er…. well endowed? She should be more….pettan…?

  7. I think the question to ask is what does Volume 7 of the LN do to advance the narrative. Then one can decide whether the anime manages to do the same.

    That really all revolves around the kokuhaku scene. Why does Hachiman do the things he does in the way he does them for the people he does?

    I think as long as the anime gets the audience to start asking that question in earnest, then it will have successfully adapted Volume 7.

  8. you the man, frog-kun… thanks for the ramen scene! adds depth to Yukino & Hachiman, + their dynamic. those two really need to loosen up their self-imposed limits… though of course that’s tough when the guy’s used said limits as bedrock for his very personality. such engaging drama :P and damn, sensei’s so swell.

  9. The artstyle’s definitely different; Hachiman’s eyes don’t look as beady and dead-fish like as in Season 1.
    Dare I say he even looks somewhat…attractive?

    • I completely agree with u on that….
      I didn’t like the artwork of s2 even though everywhere it says it’s an upgrade….:-P…..

  10. Blahto Blahtoto

    Hope they made a flashback for the Ramen scene…….

  11. it’s the cat again….after another devastating final as I was looking for oregairu LN to read (loved the series, my life kinda seems like Hachiman, minus the romance unfortunately) to my surprise I find you as the translator (another surprise was reading your bio, the kun ain’t the kun that I thought it stood for :-P )…..thnx 4 translating ’em…..^_^

  12. I know what you mean. Sometimes some fans go to great pains to want to see the original source material of their favorite series be perfectly rendered exactly to the anime. That is just not going to happen. I see this especially with Seraph of the End. A series currently airing right now. Sometimes you just have to make your peace with the slight differences from one adaptation to another. In this case with Oregairu from the light novel to the anime series.

    It makes me happy to know your still a big fan of My Teen Romantic Comedy is Wrong As I Expected. (Oregairu) as ever. Me too!

  1. Pingback: Pilotathon des Anime de Printemps 2015 : Oregairu – Zoku et DanMachi | In Between Dreams

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