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Marmalade Boy

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How Could Michael Be Disappointed?
Source: TV
Layers: 1
Sketches: 1
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Key Cel
Original Matching Background

Added 8/1/2018
Updated 8/1/2018
Episode 50 - The Foreign Exchange Student Appears [Michael is....Strange!]

It seems to have taken me quite some time to get around to this one.

I've had this for awhile, but I never got around to reviewing it.

A shame really, as this may actually be my best looking cel, condition wise.

The Scene in Context

Yuu's and Miki's families have agreed to host an American exchange student, Michael Grant. Miki is not told about this until almost the last minute, and is left alone at the house shortly before he is set to arrive. This sends her into a panic. This leads to a humorous extended introduction where Miki, having mistaken him for Yuu on the way home from work, greets the foreigner with a big hug, and a complaint about "their" parents.

Michael insists that Miki show him the sights immediately. "Yes, right now!" he says, directly in English. We are treated to a long montage of Miki giving Michael a tour of the town, before they stop for a brief rest in front of a coffe shop. The front of the coffee shop looks very similar to the front of a clothing store where Yuu worked earlier in the series, yet that same clothing store is shown to still be in business several episodes after this one.

Miki sits across a wooden table from Michael, as he looks out over the street. He comments that Japan really isn't that much different from home. Miki responds by asking him if he is disappointed. The camera snaps to a close of Michael still looking out at the street, before turning to Miki to say, "No way! It's always been my dream to travel to Japan. I'm anything but disappointed."

It is the very first frame of this scene, before turning his head to Miki, that I have captured here. For some reason the animators though the close-up of Michael's movement needed to be very fluid, the sequence is loaded with frames. You really can't even see mine in the video.

I'm extremely pleased to have the matching background, though it was both stuck and taped down when I received it. I knew it was stuck. I have since separated the two, and have placed them back over each other inside their cel bags for this photo.

The cel itself looks great. Michael's eyes are a very different shape from Miki's, and sometimes this makes him look rather creepy to me. This is actually one of his best looks, and overall the paint is in great shape for it's age. I expect from his design Michael is some sort of a stereotype.

As you might expect, it doesn't take him long to fall for Miki. Of course, that's why he was brought on the show in the first place.

He seems not to take a lot of things too seriously, especially in the early going. He supposedly learned Japanese because he liked old samurai and ninja movies, which I found rather humorous.

Frankly, Michael fails to convince me that English is his first language, and that doesn't really bother me. Michael's voice is high, lively, and fun.

Though he may be an American character, Michael's voice is very much Japanese.

Michael's Seiyuu

Michael was voiced by Hikaru Midorikawa. From the 90's he was known for the role of Heero (or Hiiro) Yuy in Gundam Wing. Also of note is his role as Schuldig in Weiss Kruz. I have never seen either of these anime (or the Weiss Kruz OVA) myself. I have heard Yuy sing, and he sounds very much like Michael. Midorikawa-san sings really well.

More recently, I have come across him voicing the lead character Kyosuke, in Little Busters. I have watched a small number of episodes, but I've yet to form an opinion on the series.

Final Thoughts

While it is a shame it was stuck to start with, this is still a very nice cel. It's one of my best. I have A1 of the sequence. I think the A10 in the RubberSlug gallery here is a sequence mate. So far this is the only cel in my collection for which I have found a mate.

I'm glad to finally give this cel an article. I should have done it long ago.

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Curator: Pixel
Gallery Created: 11/30/2017
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