Friday, November 18, 2005

Paradise Kiss 06

Halfway through the series, we have reached the breakthrough episode. Yukari is a big success at her first model shoot, for Happy Berry. And she decides it's time to actually make love to George. The previous five episodes were leading up to this. Now she steps up onto an adult stage. Her professional and personal relationships can evolve from here.

The model shoot really made me happy for Yukari. And Mikako's promise of more work, as well as Seiji's expectation that they would work together again, and the admiration of the "little people" who came later to take a photo with Yukari, all made you feel her joy.

The sequence leading up to and including Yukari in bed with George was beautifully done, following the manga closely. I appreciated how graphic they were able to be in a mainstream anime. Comments elsewhere made me realize how embarrassing and/or powerful those scenes could be to the intended audience of mid-to-upper teen girls.

This is the best anime of the fall season. It has depth and style that no other approaches. Too bad it was forced into 12 episodes instead of 24, so that some of the developments seem psychologically rushed. Kobayashi Osamu, the director of Beck, scores again. As does Yazawa Ai, the original mangaka.