An interview with director Toshirou Fujii (18if, Baby Steps), who is in charge of this production, was posted on the official site for the animated adaptation of the light novels written by Tone Koken and illustrated by Hiro, Super Cub. The interview is quite lengthy, so only the most relevant responses related to production will be shared.
- Transmission has started. Let me ask you a few things in light of this. First of all, I was quite impressed by Koguma’s smile.
- By nature, Koguma is a silent and expressionless character, so perhaps the impression he makes when he smiles is more pronounced by this. I gave the production team the following instruction: “Oguma does not show emotions when she is around people, but when she is alone or on her scooter they are allowed to show her happy, angry or sad.”
Could it be that some viewers are uncomfortable with Koguma’s personality?
- She is fine. I think we all have experiences in our daily lives where we meet a person for the first time and we think, “What’s wrong with this guy?” But when you get to know him better, you discover that she is a good person. So I don’t think it’s a problem that viewers feel that way at first.
- One more thing about expressions, when Koguma started the scooter I was impressed by the transition of colors, from a slightly saturated tone to a vivid one.
- The use of color direction is not uncommon, and it is actually quite a classic technique, but I was directly inspired by a movie. When Koguma’s heart finally feels emotion, her world changes to a more vivid one. This is how I decided to convey her emotions. I think it wasn’t that elaborate, but I’m sure it was effective.
- It’s rare for an anime to use this technique, so surely it must have been difficult to explain it to the production team.
- There were times where it was, but that was due to cause and effect. The problems arose from my own decision to establish this policy, so it is entirely my responsibility to carry it out. Also, much of the production team has never ridden a scooter or been to the locations featured in the series. Additionally, I wanted to create an animation that was different from today. With all that, it was to be expected that the team would have difficulties to carry the project forward, but it is not their fault at all.
- Another aspect that impressed me is that when Koguma rides his scooter, the sounds seemed quite real.
- In production we had an idea in mind that he had to master: “The sound of the scooter is the most important thing.” So the author of the novels rented us his own scooter and we recorded all the sounds of him. He brought it to us in his mini van, haha. Also, the sound effect director got the same scooter from
Koguma, so this way we recorded all the sounds needed for the production.
Is it difficult to create that variety of sounds for production?
- Yes. We don’t usually think about it much, but in our daily life we hear a wide variety of sounds. It is quite difficult to recreate that daily life in an animation.
What do you mean by that?
- For example, many people are not aware of the sounds they make when walking on the road, but if we didn’t put those sounds in the animation, they would notice. The sounds that we hear but unconsciously ignore are quickly detected by us when we see an animation that does not include them, we feel uncomfortable without knowing why. In this case we don’t put a lot of soundtrack in the episodes, so we can’t “cheat” and hide the sounds, which is why it is one of the most important aspects of the production.
Super Cub Synopsis
The story centers on Koguma, a high school girl in Yamanashi. She has no parents, friends, or hobbies, and her daily life is empty. One day, Koguma gets a used Honda Super Cub motorcycle. This will be her first time riding a motorcycle to school. Running out of gas and avoiding a crash become a small source of adventure for Kagura’s empty life. She is satisfied with her new life, until her classmate Reiko tells her that she also has a motorcycle.