Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin, episode 2: Partners

Maya has the best facial reactions EVAR. She should put out her own photobook. Heck, we even get an outfit change in this episode. Two, if you count the towel.

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Abe Minoru #6’s (aka Fumiaki Uchida) ample johnnie (at least judging by the shadow) is a little too much for Maya to handle as she runs away from the perv. While she may be tough enough to take out ghosts and ghouls, it’s best to leave the pervs to the police. But she manages to hang onto Fumiaki’s back-to-the-future camera phone as she escapes. Did they have camera phones back in 1999? Well, there’s an explanation for it, so hang on. Back in her room, Maya watches a younger Fumiaki Uchida on TV using telekinesis to bend a spoon on one of those Japanese variety shows, at which point she gets all tsuntsun and throws the wunderphone at the TV to shut it off. Between the events with her father, and the magical floating naked guy, Maya’s patience with the occult is at wits end. Things don’t get better when she takes a picture of herself using the phone and instead captures a skull and some bones.

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Things don’t take a turn for the better the next day, when the Vice President introduces Fumiaki as a new teacher in the school. To Maya’s utter and complete dismay. What a look! In between moments where she tries to dismember Fumiaki, she gives him an opportunity to explain himself. Apparently, Fumiaki is from the year 2012. Aliens have taken over the Earth. And he’s been sent back in time to save the future, by finding the "Nostradamus Key", which is somewhere in the Occult Academy, using his special cameraphone. Oh, and don’t forget, this is the guy who chased after Maya naked the day before. Believable story. Or complete lunacy? The look above explains it all. Not only doesn’t Maya believe him. She recalls the prophecy herself "A great king of terror will come from the sky" and concludes that Fumiaki is the threat.

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Meanwhile, Maya decides to make her father’s home her living space and during a shower scene, the horror show begins. Predictably, Maya’s dad’s home is a magnet for the supernatural. But we later learn in a journal that Maya’s dad had been keeping that her dad had been working to find the Nostradamus Key, which has made him even more of a target. The journal, which conveniently reveals itself in a shining light of justice to save Maya’s life from one of those evil ghosts, also contains a variety of defensive spells that her dad had compiled to protect himself. Apparently the journal also included a spell that somehow kept Maya’s towel wrapped around her, even as she was being strangled to death.

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After reading her father’s journal, Maya changes her plans. Instead of trying to destroy the school as the principal, she decides to step down and become a student instead in order to take the target off her back while she tries to find her dad’s killer and the Nostradamus Key. And while she still doesn’t trust Fumiaki, she decides to team up with him since he’s looking for the key anyway. A relationship of convenience. Although, Maya remains tsundere (whoops, this word didn’t exist in 1999!) about the occult to the very end.

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Awesome episode. Occult Academy moves so well between comedy, horror and drama so well. From the johnnie freakout scene, to the cameraphone picture shocker scene, to Smile randomly punching out JK, to the legitimately creepy shower scenes – the funny parts are funny, and the scary parts are scary. And it does it all without anything feeling abrupt or out of place (like you might recall from Angel Beats). The story itself seems like a pretty standard mishmosh of War fo the Worlds, Terminator and Back to the Future, but it seems flexible enough to have some twists and turns in its back pocket. Couple that with some really likeable and hilarious characters and we’ve got a fantastic show on our hands. The animation got a bit shoddy towards the end of the show (a bunch of scenes that clearly are going to be redrawn on the Blu-Ray), but hopefully A-1 can keep things looking good.

7 Replies to “Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin, episode 2: Partners”

  1. While I ended up dropping this after this episode, I have to acknowledge Maya’s great facial reactions. I don’t think I’ve seen ones so good since Alicia in the anime adaptation of Valkyria Chronicles (another show I dropped actually, wasn’t near as good as the game.)

    Where you mentioned War of the Worlds, I thought that the future with the resistance fighting the aliens was a lot like Half-Life 2, heh.

      1. Yeah, it was two episodes of nothing that caught my interest other than Maya’s facial expressions. The story and characters haven’t really grabbed me or made me think that it will become something that I’ll like. It’s not bad by any means, just not something for me.

  2. To answer your question about camera phones, they were experimenting with them in the early 90s. Phillipe Kahn sent the first image taken from a camera phone in 1997. So in 1999, they’d at least be known, even if they might not have been very common.

    I love Maya’s expressions. Smile might very well become the new TK, in being a bit character who shows up for a moment, does something awesome, and then disappears. Of course, I’d like for him to have more of a role too.

    1. Ah, interesting thanks for the info. I remember I got my first cell phone in 1999. It was a heavy brick that I rarely used and forgot I owned. I don’t think I started using a cell phone until maybe 2003, and I don’t think I even owned a camera phone until 2004 or so.

      lol, ironically the guy Smile punched out is named JK.

  3. I simply love all the different faces Maya makes, she is awesome.
    And we got to meet the main male character, a time agent who seems a bit weak and with a strange personality.
    I like the build up of the episodes, and there also seems to be a corruption plot besides the time traveling and occult story.

    This is the first time i heard Nostradamus mentioned in a Anime which could make it very interesting.
    Wether you agree with his prophesies or not it does seem some of them where almost true.
    And his views where pretty interesting tho based on the technology at his time, which is probably the reason some of his predictions appear to have come true.
    It was predictable in a way after all.

    This Anime is getting very interesting and i am happy that i picket it up.

    1. Yeah, Nostradamus is definitely an interesting topic. And unique for an anime. Of course, I don’t take any of it seriously. But it’s amusing, sort of in a tabloid sense. It’s not bad material for a fictional story.

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