Okay, here we are!
There has been so much talking about this anime. You have all kinds of anticipation and enthusiasm for this anime. You already know what I am worried about this anime. But in the end, we are all here, watching this new anime: Hayate no Gotoku! Can’t Take My Eyes off You.
I have already explained that, as a flashforward to the manga, this anime might give us an unshakable impression that certain things are going to happen in the manga just as foretold. Here, I shall try to shake the unshakable by not pointing out what are foretold in this anime. This is not going to be easy, but let’s see.
The series kicks off with a greeting from Hayate, while the SC Rangers are building a snowman in the background – hark, why is it in winter? Just as the three girls pile up the two snowballs, Yukiji enters and destroys the snowman. She gets punished by the three girls with snowballs, and she yells at Hayate for help. What Hayate does to her is… not entirely gentleman-like.
The date “25 September” comes up before we arrive at Nevada – not really, we are in the desert. Nagi is sitting alone in a severely damaged car, and she is in all kinds of trouble: her handkerchief is blown away, her hand is cooked by a mere touch on the red-hot car body, her eyes are filled with sand, and a cactus pricks her…
Soon she has had enough, and she shouts out her most well-known catchphrase: “
DORAMEON HAYATE!!!” But then, she also makes an interesting comment as she sobs: “He’s not gonna come. After all, he is not my butler anymore.” This could be our first answer to the “shocking revelation” on the change of Hayate-Nagi relationship. It also explains the very first promotional picture, with a tearful Nagi holding a “Where is my butler?” sign in the desert.
The watch we have seen a while ago then moves backward, suggesting that this scene is a flashforward of this anime, which in turn is a flashforward of the manga. A flashfoward for a flashforward, huh?
Time goes back to the moment when we ought to be at, as Hayate tries to wake Nagi up in the huge and luxurious Sanzen’in Mansion. While the
Big Small Bang tells us it is noon, the digital clock tells us it is 18 September, so we are at one week before the flashfoward.
With a quick flip of the calendar, we would know that 18 September 2005 was a Sunday. People do not like to get up early on Sundays, and the same goes to Nagi, so Hayate is having a difficult time. Meanwhile, Maria picks up a phone call, to which she has to speak in English – not the best pronunciation, Maria. It turns out that the call is from… the police.
Nagi is finally out of her bed and is watching a TV commercial (34 seconds, a rather long one) on Ruka’s new album “Gospel” and show in Las Vegas. Nagi then complains about the lack of fun around her, kicking her legs in the air as she lies on the sofa. As expected, she receives a long lecture from Hayate on dignity of girls, and why she should stop thinking that things around her are boring.
Nagi responds that she has had an eventful summer vacation, but as it is now gone there is a big hole in her heart. She intends to fill this hole up with anime, manga and games, but for a reason that you and me know just too well, the hole remains. Hayate is worried that Nagi would not have the energy to go to school, and Nagi replies that she would simply skip school. This leads to yet another “This is bad!” monologue in Hayate’s head. Boy, there are indeed things that will never change…
Nagi switches on the TV again, and after a series of channel-changing, she comes to a show which says that a UFO has just landed in Area 51. Funny enough, even I (a foreigner whose sense of direction is as good as Isumi’s) am well aware that Area 51 is in USA, and I guess it is because of the hype on UFO and aliens in the 1990s. It means that the show Nagi is watching could be 10 to 15 years old. No doubt Hayate gets tired about it.
Surprisingly, Nagi is very excited about this UFO thing. But then, she was merely a toddler when the 1990s UFO hype came up, so she probably has never heard about it. This makes the old show new and interesting to her. Nagi’s previous experience with spaceships probably helps motivating her as well.
Maria arrives and informs Nagi about the phone call, which is from the Nevada Police Department. Nagi answers the call, and is informed that the police want her to go to America and confirm whether the stuff they found belongs to her deceased father. As Nagi talks about her father to Hayate, she is secreting doing her research. She finds out that Nevada is not very far away from Area 51…
So, even though it is troublesome going to America just to help the police to identify some stuff (Oh come on!), Nagi is determined to go. Unfortunately her determination does not help her making better excuses than “to find out if father loved me”.
CM TIME: Isumi and Hatsuho talk about Twitter. Hatsuho’s user name is
Lady GaGa. I should go and follow her…
Maria doesn’t allow Nagi to go now, as school is starting in two days. More importantly, Nagi can go on the 5-day Silver Week (similar to Golden Week, but does not come annually) – wait a minute: was there a Silver Week in 2005?
Nagi asks Hayate for help. Maria asks Hayate for support. So there is a brief “Nagi vs. Maria” war, and in the end Maria wins. Nagi is so depressed that she decides to run away from home to find the Gandhara for NEET.
Nagi goes to Akiba to find Chiharu in Animate, who gives her the classic “you only know how important something is after losing it”. The Violet Mansion comes into Nagi’s mind… However, Nagi is not listening, and she storms out of Animate.
In Gyokusai Park (Broken Egg Park…), Nagi finally gets over her dark mood and decides to buy something before heading home. However, as she ran away from home without bringing her purse or phone, she has no way to buy things or go home. All she has with her is a smart card, which has only 170 yen left – just enough for her to buy a can of…
The drink is spicy, the money is gone, the time is late and the area is dangerous… Nagi is getting more and more worried. She is therefore very happy that Hayate finds her. However, she is still mad at Hayate for betraying her earlier. To be forgiven,
Judas Hayate must finish the spicy drink for her.
Fortunately for Hayate, a mysterious girl with purple hair comes with a bicycle and teases them. This girl calls herself “Princess Camelia”, but Hayate simply thinks that she is a lost child. Now, here is the thing: just because you think the girl is small doesn’t mean that you can pat her on the head, Hayate!
Regardless, Hayate keeps treating her as a small child, and this time he crouches down to talk to her. The girl, clearly insulted, points out that Hayate has no time to relax, because danger is behind him…
It has been a long time since the last Nagi-napping (the kidnapping of Nagi, that is), but we are not unfamiliar with the rescue sequence, because it is similar to the very first chapter/episode of the series – only this time, Hayate is grabbing the little girl along. Well, it seems that she has planned this kidnapping, after all.
One more thing: Ruka is apparently taking her business to stage drama as well. So, no matter what we have seen in the PVs about the “evil Ruka”, it is simply because she is acting… although I find it difficult to relate her “dark” acting to her “sparkling” singing…
Hayate is determined to save Nagi, and Nagi knows it. “No matter what happens, if I call for him, he’ll save me”. Such is the bonding between Hayate and Nagi: their lady-butler relationship. Then again, it is going to be changed in this anime…
The rescue is successful. The kidnappers are beaten up. The little girl is trolled. She leaves some strong words as she runs away, just like any other bad guys in anime. Hayate takes Nagi’s hand and take her home. Cheers!
It turns out that the little girl from before did not simply run away. Now she returns and arrives at the Sanzen’in Mansion. She introduces herself as “Tsugumi Ruri” (in the way she says it), the younger sister of Sanzen’in Nagi…
So, new anime, new character. There is doubt whether she really is Nagi’s younger sister. Nagi said that her father “supposedly” died in Las Vegas before she was born, and provided that Nagi doesn’t have a twin sister, it is quite impossible that she could have a younger sister. Then again, Nagi only said that her father “supposedly” died, so she wasn’t sure about it either. Maybe – just maybe – her father really is alive, at least until Tsugumi Ruri was conceived.
Speaking of Tsugumi Ruri – or Ruri Tsugumi, as appeared in the subtitles – how should we understand her name? I mean, what is the surname and what is the given name? After a night’s sleep and clearing up my head, I found that there could be two theories.
THEORY 1: According to the character profile page, her name in Katakana is ツグミ・ルリ. The dot is mostly used when calling a foreigner (e.g. David Beckham is デビッド・ベッカム). Therefore, the name before the dot (ツグミ; Tsugumi) is the given name, while the name after the dot (ルリ; Ruri) is the surname.
THEORY 2: Again, go to the character profile page. If you check the new girl’s photo, you could see that she is named “Ruri” in the URL. As the pictures are named after the given names of the characters (Hayate, Nagi, Maria, etc.), “Ruri” is also a given name, while “Tsugumi” is therefore the surname. If “Tsugumi” is used as a surname, it could be “大場” in kanji. For “Ruri” as a given name, we have examples in Hoshino Ruri and others.
And then there is something funny. If theory 1 is correct and the name is for foreigners, I should call the girl in the way I call David Beckham: first name, surname. The girl’s name would therefore be “Tsugumi Ruri”. If theory 2 is correct and the name is for Japanese, I should call the girl in the way I call Ayasaki Hayate: surname, first name. The girl’s name would therefore be “Tsugumi Ruri”… again!
The only difference between the two difference is whether I should call the girl “Tsugumi” or “Riri” when I start calling the new girl by her first name. I know it is confusing. Perhaps this is one of the times when I over-complicate things and simply confuse myself… but I guess we’ll know the definitive answer to this in the next episode. There is surely so much about the new girl that we have to learn about, because… she is a debutant!