On the First Day of Anime: Bringing all the ingredients together (Silver Spoon)

Oh hey it’s this thing. I’ll be writing a series of blurbs about moments in my aniblogging experience this year, which means it is not restricted to things that aired this season, nor is it restricted to anime. Credit to Scamp for starting the 12 Days of Anime project.

Hachiken takes his own attributes for granted. Though he performs well academically in his new agricultural high school, his feelings of inadequacy interfere with finding his own worth. Even if he scores high in practicums and exams, it pales in comparison to the leagues of farm experience that his peers have on him. Though he craves success and is goal-oriented, he finds himself lacking a particular goal. Between his aimlessless and the envy he bears towards his peers, who are for the most part guaranteed a position in their respective family farms, it’s hard to imagine what a city boy like him can accomplish.

Things change once Hachiken finds a curious object while cleaning the school campus.

(Hi10)_Gin_no_Saji_-_04_(720p)_(Commie).mkv_snapshot_05.40_[2013.12.14_00.29.45]

This is key to an important devlopment in Hachiken’s character. Further research proves this thing to be a decrepit brick oven. “Oh, joy. A brick oven,” One might say. Not Hachiken. Not only does he figure out what the thing is on his own, he also trips upon a valuable piece of information: it can make pizza. This wins the Discovery of the Mother Fucking Century for his peers. No one in his school has ever eaten a real pizza before. Driven by a rare chance, Hachiken proposes that he make a pizza using the oven.

(Hi10)_Gin_no_Saji_-_04_(720p)_(Commie).mkv_snapshot_07.41_[2013.12.14_00.35.23]

At first, he makes the mistake of treating this problem like he does with his studies: as something he alone should be doing. As a result, Hachiken is faced with many questions that are impossible for him to answer. How was he going to get dough? What toppings should he be using? How much does everything cost, and where can he get it? Does that oven even work? The more he reads into it, the more complex it becomes to the point of overwhelming him. His stress bleeds over to his daily life as his peers observe him supposedly in progress in making pizza.

This is wrong. There are only so many real life problems that can be solved without any help, and finding resources for pizza certainly isn’t one of them. Quite fortunately, as if to make the story much shorter than it needs to be, there happens to be the perfect place where he can get all of the stuff necessary to make pizza. That place happens to be his own campus.

(Hi10)_Gin_no_Saji_-_04_(720p)_(Commie).mkv_snapshot_08.47_[2013.12.14_00.35.39]

This comes off as a bit “friendship anime” because it involves him relying on his friends to make progress, but the practical application of that lesson is what makes this moment all the more poignant. Hachiken’s success in making pizza is not hinged upon any notion of personal skill or talent towards the task in question. Rather, it’s a question of whether or not he can find people to do the work for him. A valuable life lesson to be cherished.

And since everyone, and I mean everyone, is craving the opportunity to taste a real pizza, he has a lot of willing volunteers. His dorm mates bring in the fresh vegetables and tomato sauce. His classmates supply cheese and dough, while his connections in the equestian club not only supply wood for the oven but also fix the oven itself. As the resources slowly come together like rewards in a series of sidequests, the closer the dream of making pizza becomes.

(Hi10)_Gin_no_Saji_-_04_(720p)_(Commie).mkv_snapshot_12.48_[2013.12.14_00.34.27]

Of course, what’s Hachiken’s role in all of this? If he himself didn’t supply the firewood, grow all the tomatoes, cure all the cheese, or a slew of other things that brought him to this point, what exactly did he accomplish? Simply put, all those aspects existed in their own plane. All he did, or rather all he had to do, was to bring those ingredients together and apply them a certain way. He became an overseer. A project manager. A leader. Hachiken spent so much time worrying that his sempai would notice him that he didn’t realize that he was sempai the whole time. And he’s a damn good sempai if he can make pizza so good you start laughing your ass off.

(Hi10)_Gin_no_Saji_-_04_(720p)_(Commie).mkv_snapshot_19.01_[2013.12.14_00.42.32]

Addendum

  1. Why yes I do realize that I misused the term “sempai”. I have just wanted to use that sentence for a while now.
  2. So hyped for Silver Spoon S2
  3. So hyped for High Expectations Asian Dad to crush Hachiken’s spirit again.
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One comment

  1. I haven’t read the manga so I have no idea what’s coming up in the second season of the Silver Spoon anime, but I really hope we get to see more into Hachiken’s past/family life, which for the most part has only been hinted at so far. That said, I enjoyed season one like crazy and expect to enjoy the hell out of season two as well, regardless of how much the creators decide to reveal about Hachiken’s background.

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