What good is a tournament without an epic finale?
Yeah, I have absolutely no idea where the subs to Maria Holic Alive 12 are. I’ve looked everywhere for them and I’m tempted just to download a raw and attempt to make a post out of it, but I would really prefer a subbed version. Does anyone know why it’s taking so long? Am I not looking in the right places? Why can’t I find it? Whyyyyyyyyy? Anyways, this post is for Sket, not Maria Holic so my rant will stop here.
So the episode stars off finally explaining the rules of the 4th match. The participants (Unyuu and Roman) have to act out a love confession to some guy named Tadokoro (who could probably win first prize for dullest Sket Dance character ever) and the confession he likes the most wins. Unyuu (who’s boob size seems to have doubled since the last episode) begins straight off by presenting Tadokoro with a love letter. The audience goes wild, but when he opens it, it turns out to be a check for 10 million yen. Her team members start shouting at her and after listening to their advice to show her feelings more, Unyuu adds an extra 5000 yen because she cares. Her turn ends there, leaving the audience a little weirded out. However, Unyuu doesn’t see anything wrong with her confession and it’s Roman’s turn.
Roman too takes an unconventional approach to a confession and runs past Tadokoro and instead pretends to be a typical shoujo heroine airhead looking for her new school. Himeko and Bossun interrupt asking what the heck she’s doing off the stage, but Roman then explains that she’s in act one. This seems to be a suitable answer for Bossun and after he drags Himeko off, Roman turns her Otome Filter on maximum until Tadokoro is some sparkling bishie and Roman narrates that it was love at first sight. She moves on to act two, but her pace is too slow for Himeko, so Roman skips all the way the act 176 (the confession).
Roman then narrates that they’re in Bristol, a quaint town in England where Tadokoro’s er, I mean ‘Edward’s’ mother lives. However, just as they arrive, Roman er, I mean ‘Stephanie’ is struck by the infamous anime disease X and is about to die. By this point, Tadokoro is completely caught up in Roman’s extreme otome aura and the two act out a scene where ‘Stephanie’ confesses to ‘Edward’ beore she dies in the middle of the street. The entire audience is touched by this, so of course Roman won, right?
Looking now, it was probably inhalation of sparkles that killed her.
Wrong. Apparently, Unyuu is more of Tadokoro’s type (it must have been the breast implants >.>), so the Student Council wins the round and ties the game. Yeah, pretty much everyone feels like they’ve been gypped, but this means we get to see the battle of the Student Council President and Bossun in the mysterious final round. Both sides mentally prepare themselves and for once the Student Council President is serious. The final challenge is a card game called Pixie Garden and to prevent the audience from distracting the opponents, they play in a soundproof box/room thing.
While Bossun shuffles the cards, the President makes a bet that if Bossun loses, he has to quit the Sket Dan and if he loses, the President will quit the Student Council. Before Bossun can protest, the President abuses his power and basically says that Bossun doesn’t have a choice in the matter because the Student Council has more influence. The game begins and Switch explains that the game is basically like the game ‘Doubt’ where you place down a card with a color and a symbol and the next person has to match either of them. However, the cards are placed face down and so the person playing can lie about what card they played.
Bossun begins rather poorly with all of his bluffs being called by the President. After Bossun fails for a bit, the President announces that his IQ is around 200 and that there is no way he would lose in a battle of wits. Somehow, after only 5 or so moves, the deck is out of cards and as the President shuffles, Bossun has a sudden realization from staring at the game box. From outside the room, Switch explains that if a someone plays the pixie card and the other player calls it, then the one who played it automatically loses. However, if the person guesses wrong, they are the loser.
You know you watch too much anime when an IQ of 200 doesn’t seem impressive at all
With this in mind, Bossun decides on using that rule to win and uses concentration mode. The President taunts Bossun while he’s doing this, but Bossun manages to remember the exact order that the cards were shuffled in and therefore can predict what cards are in the deck and the President’s hand. The card game finally picks up speed from here and the two play on equal ground. Finally, the President plays his second last card and Bossun announces that it is the pixie. However, when the President turns it around, it turns out the be the blue star. As it turns out, the pixie was actually the very first card the President played and he managed to outsmart Bossun right from the start.
The Student Council wins the tournament and the President admits that his IQ is only around 160. Not that it matters anymore, because the next scene is Bossun’s farewell party. However, the President interrupts the tearfest to give Yabasawa the ‘3’ mouth that she wanted in the first place. He then asks what the Sket are doing, and when they explain the President says that he was only caught in the moment and that Bossun doesn’t actually have to quit. Trolled again! However, the President seems to have more respect for the Sket now and the episode ends here.
….The cat thing is really creepy.
I thought I felt disappointed in the manga when it turned out that Tadokoro was bribed by the tournament owner (who wanted to boost the Student Council manga’s popularity) to pick Unyuu. The anime version was waaaay more disappointing. He picked her because she was his type? Seriously? It’s off topic a bit but Roman’s seiyuu did an EXCELLENT job with the dying scene. The voice was perfect!
Pretty much that whole contest here just felt half assed thanks to that extremely unexciting and boring ending. At least when Tadokoro was bribed, there was a plausible reason for Roman’s loss. The bribe was also one of the President’s reasons for taking back what he said to Bossun during the bet too because without the bribe, the Sket would have won. Now instead, we get a “I was caught up in the moment, sorry lol! K, bye.” from him instead of showing off his good side. Sigh.
Other than that, I think the animators did a pretty good job with keeping the card game entertaining to watch. Let’s face it, watching two people take turns playing face down cards (without holographic monsters nonetheless!) is pretty boring. The way they sped it up by only showing what was necessary was good and actually made it interesting. Character wise, the President was pretty badass here too. I think this was one of the better arcs with him in it and it was great in showing that he’s not just a lazy figurehead all the time. On the other hand, Unyuu is… Unyuu. I can’t really think of a time where she isn’t a clueless, money driven ojou-sama so this arc didn’t really expand her character a whole lot.
Sket Dance skips over summer vacation and the Sket have to help some kid who wants to be popular. Slice of life drama time! Wait. What? Apparently the number of Sket episodes have been extended. I swear the number changes every time I try to look it up. Anyways, I guess this means that we’ll hold off from an extremely anticlimactic ending for now.