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Archive for March, 2012

The first episode is “When I Was Deceived”. Natsume and Nyanko-sensei are walking along minding their own business when a Youkai approaches them looking for Reiko. Actually, he is looking for the Book of Friends, wanting a name returned to another Youkai. Natsume agrees, but is carried off since this Youkai flies. Nyanko-sensei falls off at one point but still dashes off after them – until he is distracted by a rope by a well. He pulls out the rope and looks in – and falls in. He finds there the older lady who is an exorcist down there. He also finds a barrier. The well is full of sealed Youkai. The lady is looking for one in particular that she is looking for. Since Nyanko-sensei pulled out the rope she is now stuck, and he can’t risk changing into his true form since the well is full of power to purify Youkai. So she tells Nyanko-sensei a bit about herself. Like many exorcists, as a young girl she came to hate that she could see what others could not. She was sent to seal a particularly nasty one, but a smaller, nonthreatening one got caught in the working and so she stopped and got hurt. She was scolded afterwards. She heard of an exorcist named Reiko so she went to go talk to her, being rather confused. She captures the small Youkai but they get found by the bad Youkai. Fortunately he is scared away by an exorcist. At first she thinks it is Reiko but it is not. She asks her questions and then comes to visit again later. However, the bad Youkai shows up as well. This time the guy seals the bad Youkai – but it turns out he is a Youkai himself. He was created by a exorcist to seal Youkai, but at least since the exorcist died he is becoming evil himself. So he asks her to seal him. She does and throws him into the well. After telling this story, she says she can’t find the Youkai she sealed and takes off the barrier so Nyanko-sensei can get out and throw her the rope, which he does. She says she won’t exorcise him that day since she doesn’t want Natsume to hate her. Meanwhile, the first Youkai already got the sealed Youkai out now that he was safe again and Natsume helped him find it and he unsealed him – turning him back into a stone.

The second episode is “The Moon-Splitting Festival”. Natsume gets approached by a bunch of Youkai who ask him for help . . . Meanwhile Natori is also approached by a fellow exorcist. Turns out there is a festival every ten years where the god of harvest and the god of famine have a competition to see who will dominate the mountain for the next ten years. However, the harvest god has not been seen for years now. It will harm everyone if he doesn’t show up and the god of famine wins by default. He suspects the god of harvest was sealed by an exorcist and wants Natori to find and unseal him. If this is impossible he is to seal the god of famine. Oh, and the festival is the next day. So Natori discretely shows up along with his helpers when low and behold, who is the god of harvest but Natsume! He was asked by the followers of the harvest god to take his place for the festival. They have no idea what the competition will be. Turns out they are to capture a Youkai beast. Natsume’s group gets off to a slow start. He separates from the followers of the harvest god. They are to try and catch the beast while he goes to find the harvest god. He meets up with Natori at a shrine and around there they are found by the beast. Natsume is knocked off a cliff into the river with Natori’s helper. They wash up, but are found by the followers of the famine god . . .

The third episode is “The God, Enshrined”. Fortunately, Natori comes by on Nyanko-sensei in his true form which throws the followers of the famine god off. Natsume says he felt something as he was going down the river, but again they are cornered by the beast. Natori decides to seal the beast since the rules say nowhere how the beast must be captured. Natsume runs back to where the contest started while Natori plays with the followers of the famine god. Natsume makes it in time, but then the famine god takes off Natsume’s headdress and shows he is a human. Natori and Nyanko-sensei show up again just in time with the stone in which the harvest god was sealed. Natsume frees him and the harvest god and famine god decide to end the competition and leave together. So they do. This event knocks Natsume out for several days. Later, Natsume meets up with Natori. He knows he never would have succeeded without Natori’s help.

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In the first episode, Daisy and Nan are planning a ball to which they invite Nat, Demi, and Tommy. The boys are eager for the food the girls are preparing, but are not so sure they want to dance, especially Tommy. Tommy talks the other two into some mischief. The ball comes around and everyone is appropriately attired. Things go well enough at first. Nan forces them to dance first. However, when they get to the table Teddy distracts Nan and Daisy and the boys grab some of the treats. When the girls realize what has happened, Nan is furious. Things go from bad to worse with Tommy’s actions and in short the ball is ruined, very much upsetting Daisy. Jo-sensei is not pleased and even threatens to send Daisy home if boys can’t learn how to behave. Over the next day or so she acts aloof from the guilty boys, quite unlike her usual manner. Same with the girls. Finally in desperation the boys ask Father Bhaer for advice. They invite the girls (and Jo-sensei) to a party where they end up flying kites! Everyone behaves and the boys are forgiven, having learned something of the importance of good manners.

In the next episode, everyone is thinking about what they want to be when they grow up. Daisy will be happy to be a wife and mother. Nat has musical aspirations. Tommy is a capitalist in the making. Franz decides he wants to be a teacher. Nan settles on shoveling coal for a train. She even practices with a stove at school with less than ideal results. The boys tease her, especially Tommy, and Nan decides to go off an prove she can do this. When Jo-sensei hears about this, she runs after Nan, realizing what she is up to. Yep, Nan managed to get to town, get onto a train before it started, and did shovel coal without the engineer realizing who she was at first. When he does realize, he scares Nan and she falls off the train. Fortunately, Jo-sensei, acting just as recklessly as Nan, shows up in time to catch her. Yeah, Jo-sensei sees much of her younger self in Nan. She promises Nan to not make fun of her dreams but to help her realize them, whatever they may be.

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The first episode is “Other side of the glass”, the first of a two-parter. So Natsume and his friends go out to a festival. There Natsume sees someone handing out fliers. It turns out to be some Yokai. They try to grab Natsume. Fortunately his friends come looking for him so the Yokai leave. Natsume gets home, says hi to his guardians, and then goes to his room only to find a jar in there that is not his. Natsume touches it and gets sucked inside. Nyanko-sensei comes home and finds Natsume thus. Unfortunately he can’t open the jar without harming Natsume so turns himself into Natsume to go down to dinner (which he loves). Natsume goes to sleep as best he can in the jar, when the Yokai he saw earlier sneaks in. Fortunately Nyanko-sensei is ready for this and saves the jar. The bad news is that the Youkai gets away. The next day Nyanko-sensei agains turns into Natsume and starts asking questions since Natsume heard something about a mountain. No one seems to really know. It doesn’t help that Nyanko-sensei may look like Natsume but doesn’t act like him^^; He finally gets the needed information from the class president, though not without making her think he likes her – much to Natsume’s distress. It turns out an old and powerful Yokai is returning and is offering to protect weaker Youkai who bring an offering. Natsume is supposed to be the offering. Tanuma finds them and he figures out something is going on so Nyanko-sensei confesses what is going on. Tanuma decides to help, while Natsume wants to keep him out of it. Tanuma gets knocked over and Natsume is stolen by the Yokai. Tanuma manages to find where the mountain is and ends up in the Yokai realm. He runs into a Yokai . . .

The second episode is “The Gap Between Humans and Yokai”.

The Yokai tells Tanuma to go back, but he won’t. He finally meets up with Nyanko-sensei again and he comes up with a plan. Tanuma goes in dressed as a Yokai and says he is the one who captured Natsume. This gets the Yokai who stole him mad and he is tricked in to opening the jar and freeing Natsume – just as Tanuma is discovered. Natsume gets them out of there. They run into a room where they find the nice Yokai – who is actually Natori. Yep, Natsume doesn’t share much about other aspects of his life to those who don’t already know about it. Nyanko-sensei also shows up, looking something like Reiko. Natori is there to seal the old and strong Yokai. But they figure is is actually a scam. The place they are in is sealed. The only way out is the front entrance. The two Yokai who stole Natsume tricked  the weak Yokai into coming here to feed the old and powerful one. They split up to try and find the exit and to find the prime Yokai. Tanuma gets separated from Nyanko-sensei and is attacked. A stone Natori gave him protects him, but the evil auras are now too much. Natori has his Youki servants look after Tanuma and he and Natsume set a trap for the prime Yokai. This makes Natori and Natsume visable. Fortunately, Nyanko-sensei tells the other Yokai about the scam and scares them into leaving. Tanuma is alright, but this is exactly the reason why Natsume has tried to keep him out of what he is involved in. Natori and Reiko both put their back on friendship for this reason, but as Natori told Natsume, Natsume needs people like Tanuma. I think now Tanuma also has a better idea why Natsume so often keeps quiet. Fortunately, he is very willing to follow Natsume’s lead in this.

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In this lovely volume, we start the Master of the Clow part of the series, volumes 7-9. Once again we are treated by Dark Horse to lovely color pages, and even the regular pages are on lovely white paper. The artwork is larger than standard manga size so it is quite easy to enjoy! As for the story, you thought it was all over. The cards have all been captured and Sakura is master of the Clow. But new events are happening of a magical nature and of a type Sakura has never faced before – and the Clow Cards are no longer enough! Sakura must now make the Clow Cards into Star Cards using her own power. Just who could be behind these mysterious events? Meanwhile, there are some new transfer students in town . . . Just one more volume after this! Even if you have the old Tokyo Pop version, this new edition is worth having.

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Things are not good. Thanks to a cigarette that Tommy forgot that he hid under his bed, the room he shares with Demi quickly becomes full of fire. Fortunately, Nan sees it and raises the alarm. No one does more than Dan in fighting the fire. He arrives first and gets Tommy and Demi out of the room. In the process, the flower from Jo-sensei is destroyed, consumed by the fire. The next day Father Bhaer returns and things are rather chaotic. Fortunately, Tommy and Demi don’t have any permanent injuries. Nat feels bad and confesses things to Nan who then forces Father Bhaer to hear the whole story. Nat is clearly remorseful. Tommy is less remorseful, but he still is somewhat and he has his injuries which he won’t forget in a hurry. Dan, however, shows no remorse. So Father Bhaer feels he has to send Dan away. It will be to a Mr. Page who has a farm and who takes boys who have trouble at Plumfield. If Dan is good, he can come back. He acts like he doesn’t care, but really Dan does care. He only shows his emotions to little Teddy, though the others are distressed at Dan’s going, especially Nat and Nan.

In the next episode, the news is good from Mr. Page. Dan is working hard and doing well. Meanwhile, Stuffy gets a package full of sweets from his mother. As Jo-sensei observes, Stuffy does not need more sweets. She talks him in to reluctantly agreeing to no more afternoon snacks and to exercising. Stuffy hates it, though since he secretly takes a shortcut at one point he impresses the others. Any good feelings from this is lost the next day when they play soccer. Stuffy writes to his mother complaining. She comes storming to Plumfield to take Stuffy home and in the process insults Jo-sensei. Stuffy didn’t think she would go quite that far. In the end Stuffy realizes he is a coward and hates facing hard things, but he knows Jo-sensei really is trying to help him become a better person. So he decides to stay after all.

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