Bakuman 16

Kaya tells Mashiro and Takagi about Azuki’s new role and even invites both of them over to her place to watch it, but Mashiro wants to watch it alone and the fact that she’s got a role makes him want to get an anime before she ends up voicing another heroine.

After using a realistic art style too much Mashiro is having trouble trying to draw a cute heroine, so Takagi suggests that he go with something similar to his sketches of Azuki and shows him the new story he’s come up with, about an angel on Earth who fights evil angels. With the Golden Future Cup coming up Hattori also calls them to see if they have something to submit, so they plan to finish their story quickly in order to submit it, and with both of them and Azuki having dreams Kaya wishes that she had one as well. Mashiro and Takagi go on to show Hattori their completed work and while he’s amazed at how easily they’ve managed to use his advice,  he still thinks that they have to go beyond it since if an editor is better than his author he may as well write the story himself. As they walk back Mashiro tells Takagi about how his uncle told him that the winner is the one who surprises his editor the most.

At Eiji’s apartment one of the assistants has given up so the remaining assistant, Nakai asks Yujiro whether he could get some more to at least make the atmosphere better, while Eiji looks forward to what Ashirogi Muto will come up with. However their work didn’t even make it into the finals or into the next issue of NEXT, making Mashiro reconsider his skills, despite this though they both go on to watch the first episode of St. Visual’s Girls Academy and find that Azuki’s role was as a student confessing to one of the heroines. Afterward they see her in a commercial and somehow it gives them the strength to go on after what had happened to them.

The next day Takagi skips school and when Mashiro finds him they receive a call from Hattori, so they go over the Yueisha building where he shows them that even though they didn’t do so well in the contest itself, the comments from the judges are able to pull their spirits up. With words about how much promise they show and that they can’t wait until they get serialised, moving Takagi to tears. They talk about this as they watch Kaya play volleyball, realising that they still haven’t made it that far yet and Takagi admitting that he has to do better with his stories, and while Kaya wasn’t too happy when Takagi told her that he was just watching her boobs bounce around. She later goes on to show them a booklet where Azuki is introduced as a new voice actress and tell them her new dream, to become a writer and how she’ll start off with cellphone novels with Takagi’s help in return for teaching him how to write a good heroine.

As far as Mashiro is concerned it isn’t needed and that Takagi should come up with something mainstream yet original, however the next day he tells him how he’s almost forcing himself to write them and they don’t move on their own like Eiji had said. So he decides to use the summer break in order to come up with one but instead finds himself thinking about Kaya. At the Yueisha building Hattori’s captain asks whether Mashiro could team up with another author, but to Hattori Ashirogi Muto is an inseparable pair and just after this Yujiro asks him if he could at least ask him to work as an assistant for Eiji over the summer. Meanwhile Takagi ends up going on a date with Kaya when Hattori asks him whether it would be okay for Mashiro to work as an assistant, and due to his writer’s block he thinks it wouldn’t be right to stop him. So he goes on to ask Mashiro this along with telling him what Takagi had said, and though he’s hesitant at first he accepts the offer, thinking that he could at least learn something from Eiji but as he passes by he spots Takagi kissing Kaya in the park.

Next Episode:

Thoughts:

In all a decent episode where while we saw Mashiro and Takagi make a little bit of progress as far as making a mainstream manga that they could get serialised went, what it also seemed to do was put some tension between them as a team and whether they could really keep on working together. And of course the extra screen time that Kaya received wasn’t so bad either.

Even though how it was done seemed kind of forced, I still liked how this episode set out to put a wedge between Mashiro and Takagi as a team, possibly putting them at risk of splitting up and heading their separate ways. With it starting out well in how they were gradually drifting a part through Takagi suffering from writer’s block and stepping up a bit on Mashiro’s side towards the end, in which he was offered a job as an assistant to Eiji. Something that while it may have not sat well with him but he still decided to do in order to better himself as part of Ashirogi Muto, however the way it ended with Mashiro getting another idea of what Takagi had meant when he said it was okay for him to work as an assistant was kind of forced. But in the end these kinds of set ups can be pretty interesting.

While seeing Mashiro and Takagi aim at something completely mainstream may be something that I think is kind of pointless, since so far they’ve only been shown to be able to create manga that’s average at best when they aim in that direction. But for what it is, it’s growth on their part as they slowly learn to be able to write something better in that category, thus in the end increasing their chances of getting an anime quickly in the long run. Yet at the same time it doesn’t exactly fit in with how impatient they are to do that, which if anything would make them do something in the same root of what they’ve done previously that would convince Hattori to at least submit it for serialisation, and aside from that with Mashiro’s temporary position as an assistant we’ll start to see the cast grow wider with the likes of Fukuda and Nakai.

The words that Hattori said about what Mashiro and Takagi would have to do were also pretty interesting for what they were, further making it clear that he was only there to guide them while they would have to do everything else. Making it clear that they would need to be better than him if they were going to get anywhere as mangaka, and that if they were to even have a chance of getting serialised they would need to take his advice, not only meeting it but exceeding it at the same time. And while this may have been great in itself, it was fun to see him get one of those high tension moments for it.

Seeing Kaya get some more screen time and in a way, more focus is something that always good to see, where this time it looked into how she was really the only one that didn’t have any long term goal or dream in the characters we’ve seen so far. Something that kind of stands out in comparison so it was great to see her set out and attempt to find a dream of her own, and even pretty funny at that when she decided that she would become a writer in order to fit in with Mashiro, Takagi, and Azuki. Though the way she would help Takagi write a good heroine in exchange for him helping her out didn’t really seem like a fair trade off, because if anything he would be most likely doing a little more than helping. Yet either way this was something that was good to see since Kaya herself can be a pretty fun character.

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