Bakuman II Episode 16: Fukuda to the Rescue!
Aoki visits Ashirogi Muto’s office with Miyoshi, consulting them on her issue of not having an assistant to guide her and teach her about panty shots. Mashiro unhelpfully remembers Ishizawa, however similar to Nakai, his requests and conditions are all perverse and Aoki very rightfully turns him down. After Fukuda realizes Nakai is a wreck at the moment, he offers to be the one to help Aoki and with his guidance, Aoki ends up submitting her Time of Blue Leaves to the serialization committee, going head to head with Tanto.
I know this show already has a reputation of changing the namings of various things (Shounen Jump to Jack being one) but I never thought that Run! Daihatsu Tanto! from the manga would end up being Hirameki Tanto in the anime. Somehow it feels strangely different, and I still don’t understand why so many titles need to be adapted specially for the anime. I know Jack instead of Jump has something to do with copyright issues though.
Anyway, Mashiro’s idea of contacting Ishizawa and asking him for help wasn’t exactly smart, was it? In true Nakai style (who I’ve now lost a lot of respect for, gained from when he risked his life to draw outside Aoki’s window) the guy basically asked for a photoshoot, and was far too arrogant considering Ashirogi Muto write for one of the biggest names in manga and he does a monthly four-panel for…some magazine. I feel really sorry for Kato-san to have to put up with Nakai, though it’s clear to everyone but him that she’s talking to him out of respect for his drawing skills instead of romantically. In fact is this the reason why BB Kenichi isn’t doing well in rankings?
I was surprised that Fukuda actually went to such lengths to help, from going to Takahama’s house to rage at Nakai to offering to help Aoki out. Somehow I can’t help but feel that he’s actually interested in her, even though he says it’s to keep Team Fukuda together as much as possible. Aoki continues to surprise me with her possible range of emotions, I never thought she’d ever get that worked up.
Could it be to spur Ashirogi on by giving them a rival to compete against? Tanto now has to go against Time of Blue Leaves after all, whereas before it was pretty much guaranteed that they’d get a serialization. Yeah, I don’t think getting married will go so easily without a plot twist. In the future they’ve also got Iwase as a potential rival as well, who seems really intent on chasing Takagi all the way to his home ground of literature, while Hattori’s more than willing to help her.
By the way, there was a major pivotal twist in today’s Bakuman manga chapter. Go read (if you haven’t already). NAO.