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12 days of anime #7 – Kong singing a Japanese song for Christmas [Ping Pong the Animation]

19.12.2015

This year I watched Ping Pong because my trustworthy source of anime ranking claimed that it was the top voted anime of 2014. On knowing this, as a responsible blogger, I daringly jumped on the bandwagon of checking out the most highly acclaimed series to keep up with the community.

Unsurprisingly, their taste is too sophisticated for me. Looking back, I did enjoy the series and still think highly of it; it’s just that some parts of it went over my head. I only understand uncomplicated things, for example the fact that Kong Wenge, a rival Chinese ping pong player, should be voted Best Girl.

PP 06 - karaoke

Kong Wenge first appears in Ping Pong as an arrogant player from China, sent to Japan to help with Japanese student players. The whole time, he was occupied with the thought of going back to his home team and obviously spared no attention for Japanese opponents. His terrific skills were acquired from fierce competition in possibly the champion power of table tennis. He refused to learn Japanese and only communicated with others through an interpreter. He was like a villain, until defeat came knocking.

Suddenly we got to see the background behind this character through silent shots of his hometown, which implies that, like many other Chinese sport players, Kong had devoted his life to sport since childhood and his earning funded by the government is the sole support for his poor family. With China famous for being so merciless in training future medal-winners, Kong must have also been separated from home to focus competing. His life depends on his glory. His family, particularly his mother, depends on his glory. Suddenly the defeat ripped him off all that. Suddenly we want to root for Kong, out of sympathy for his personal burden and fragility.

After the bitter taste of humiliation, Kong disappeared for some time. Then when he returned in episode 6, he was a kind instructor of a Japanese school’s team. They celebrated Christmas together preparing for a party and hanging out in a karaoke bar. Then without ever explaining anything, the series lets Kong sings a Japanese song while the camera began showing different characters and what they did on Christmas eve. Yeah, they only need to show.

PP 06 - merry xmas

By the way, talking of Japanese, I resumed my Japanese learning this year. In the next few days I’m about to take the end-of-course test, but why oh why am I still sitting here typing these English words instead of reviewing my lessons? I’m such a failure of a learner!

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