As the merciless bloodbath of Saimoe 2008 enters its final stages, voters begin to populate the leaderboard with the eight names that will join battle in the last three rounds.
Emerging victorious from the Battle of the 19th are CLANNAD‘s Fuuko, who slaughtered HnNKn‘s Hanyuu with an unassailable 369-point lead, and Lucky Star‘s Kagami, who trounced CLANNAD‘s Kyou with a decisive 1448-988 win.
The Battle of the 20th was harder fought, with Bamboo Blade‘s Kirino claiming a 1023-888 victory over To Love-Ru‘s Mikan and CLANNAD‘s Tomoyo very narrowly defeating Hidamari Sketch‘s Miyako by a hairline margin of 39 points, 1046-1007. (Here we bow our heads and offer a moment’s silence to commemorate the fall of our brave Miya-chan – and quietly plot the course of our righteous vengeance.)
In an epic struggle between two great warriors, Bamboo Blade‘s Tamaki clinched a 1058-898 win over Shakugan no Shana‘s Shana at the Battle of the 21st (Huzzah!), while Lucky Star‘s Tsukasa quietly edged past ARIA‘s Akari to move into the Final Eight with a 1131-861 tally. I suspect those two settled their match over smiles, bows, afternoon tea and a card game, with one insisting that the other deserved to win. (“Um, I really don’t deserve this victory, I’m sure nee-chan will understand if I forfeit . . .” “No no, you won fair and square, Tsukasa! Now you can join your sister in the winners’ circle. Congratulations!”)
And finally, at the Battle of the 22nd, CLANNAD‘s Nagisa beat back a fierce counterattack from Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS‘ Hayate to win the laurels of victory 1190-1047, and Hayate no Gotoku‘s Hinagiku blasted true tears‘s Noe into oblivion with a stunning 1312-926 triumph.
My picks for future engagements (results to be added as the war drags on):
Now all that’s left for us to do is sit back and watch the rest of the carnage unfold.
(Tip of the hat to lastarial for getting me hooked on this mother of all gladiatorial contests.)