New Anime

Ooi! Tonbo – 08

At this point I’m pretty much resigned that Ooi! Tonbo is mostly going to be an LiA echo chamber. Like Ginga e Kickoff (I’ve made that comparison before), only even more so given the changes to anime fandom in the intervening decade-plus. Even here it’s a select few – given the complete lack of streams, conversation, and decent aggregator scores everywhere else in English I have to assume that’s pretty much non-existent. A few folks in Japan do seem to be watching at least, but sports anime always seems to be an easier sell here.

The thing is, the series just keeps getting better. There’s plenty of depth and breadth to this story, and new facets are revealed every week. Tsubura has proved to be a nice addition (I love how her tan lines include where her golf glove usually is, reflecting how much time she spends on the course and at the range). Yes, her main role is as a catalyst for Tonbo’s development but Tsubura has an interesting story of her own, and we get a taste of some of it here.

With the typhoon blowing by, everyone holes up indoors – and Tsubura takes the opportunity to share her practice routine with Tonbo. That includes one-minute practice swings (it’s a lot harder than it sounds), drilling down on the minutest elements of the swing. She shares the reason why she works so hard – she’s trying to repay her dad for all the hard work he’s done for her. I liked the fact that Tsubura started out being extremely selfish as regards her golfing needs, then realized she was doing it and changed her tone.

This is yet another way where Tsubura’s example makes things a bit uncomfortable for Tonbo. She has people she could repay too if she were to make it big playing golf, most obviously Gon-ji. Her may say a new fishing boat would be wasted on a dinosaur like him, but the point has been made. And it prompts him to ask her the million dollar question: what does Tonbo plan to do when he’s gone? Gon-ji is already old, and Tonbo can’t make her future about him. So what exactly is she going to be living for?

Tsubura nudges things along in another way too, reciprocating Tonbo’s gift of a local charm by giving her an old Calloway Big Bertha utility club (more corporate sponsorship?). One by one Tonbo is gathering a set of clubs, though she’s still a long way short. But if you’re going to carry only three clubs a utility wood should definitely be one of them, as it’s the most versatile club in the bag (and why that Calloway changed the game when it was introduced). And it gives Igaiga a chance to impart some more stealth lessons on Tonbo as he shows her all the amazing things she can do with that 5-wood.

One of the things Igaiga has Tonbo do is try and hit a low running shot off a high tee without touching the tee (again, a lot harder than it sounds). A wood is fundamentally different from an iron as regards the club face at impact, and this is an important lesson – which as usual Tonbo picks up annoyingly quickly. Once she learns its subtleties a feel player like she is would be able to do almost anything with a hybrid, practically perform magic.

There’s one more twist here, as Igaiga finds a hand-drawn map of the course. Except this course has six holes, and Igaiga realizes that the designer of the Hinoshima links intended for each hole to be playable in different directions – an ingenious use of space. He’s taken by the revelation, and asks the director who drew the map. It was a man named Kuta-san, who was pretty clearly a professional course designer. He left Hino, the director says, because it “got too crowded”. That certainly says something about what sort of man he must be, but Igaiga’s curiosity is piqued. Could this be the means to finally leave the island, even if it’s only to travel to one even more remote?

The post Ooi! Tonbo – 08 appeared first on Lost in Anime.

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.