Tamako Market – 08

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Kanna builds Dera a birdhouse, but he has grown too fat to fit inside. Choi orders him on a diet. Because Tamako’s father and grandfather are quick to show mercy and feed him, they must keep a constant eye on him. To this end, Choi attends school with Tamako, Kanna and Midori, and meets Shiori. They then take Choi to vintage stores to try on clothes more suitable for Japan in the Fall. Dera eventually loses weight, though only in his lower half, and Kanna and Midori present Choi with a coat.

Beyond the addition of Choi and the rough goal of getting Dera a bit slimmer (he has been letting himself go), this week is straight-up slice-of-life, seasoned by those anomalies. Choi has been walking around in a linen shift and bare feet all this time, but it’s getting colder, and if she intends to stick around, she needs to dress a bit warmer. It’s pretty funny that the girls treat her as a canvas for their own fashion ideals, and she is willing to defer to their judgement.

Meanwhile, Dera the fat-ass complains at first, and his stomach growls, but he eventually bears down and loses a few pounds. He is a proud bird, after all, and his whole raison d’être is to assist Choi with her divination, he must improve his physical condition. The end result of his labor is visually hilarious, as the top half remains haughtily broad, while his overall shape is that of an upside-down teardrop. While we interpreted Choi as picking out Tamako as her prince’s bride to be last week, we were either wrong, or that plotline was merely shelved this week.


Rating: 6 (Good)

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Tamako Market – 07

Choi Mochimazzi arrives at Usagiyama in search of both Dera and her prince’s bride. Distressed by his increased girth, he blames Tamako, who set up a “trap” that cost him the will and ability to leave the town. As a suspicious Choi spends more time with Tamako and experiences the hospitality of the shopping district, she concludes there is no such trap, and that the townsfolk are merely kind and generous people. When Tamako asks whom Choi is looking for in a bride, Choi suddenly reacts as if Tamako is that bride.

Throughout the show’s run, Dera has been the wild card that’s kept it from being just another shopping district slice-of-life in which guys never get the girl. Now Dera’s boss, of sorts, is in town, and combines the exotic foreignness of Dera with the relatability of a human. After all, Dera is at the end of the day, a bird, and a tool of sorts. One wonders why a society that can put circuitry into a bird to turn it into a communications device would walk around in bare feet and wear such primitive clothing, but to each their own.

Choi serves well enough as a fresh fish out of water, and even buys into Dera’s lame excuse that he was trapped into staying…or is that lame after all? While they mean no ill will, Tamako, her family, and the shopping district have nonetheless conspired to create an environment so comfortable and welcoming, that it’s hard for anyone to leave…or remain thin. And then, at the end, we’re faced with something we probably should have seen coming long ago: that lil’ Tamako may (may, mind you) be the bride the Mochimazzis have been looking for all along. But that would mean leaving everything she knows.


Rating: 7 (Very Good)