…And then Kana proceeded to scratch Nishida’s eyes out.
|Sadly, RL ate Banchou and she will not be joining me in the next couple episodes of Chihayawesomenes. On the bright side, this gives me the opportunity to regain the sanity that I’m losing while playing Corpse Party. That game is surprisingly disturbing. A character took out her throat by jamming a pair of scissors down it. The scene was fully voiced. Yeah. Then later,some girl had her eye jabbed out with scissors. If I don’t develop a scissors phobia by the end of this, it will be a bloody (no pun intended) miracle.|
With Mizusawa’s win in the tournament, Chihaya is handed a trophy and she starts crying because she won it with everyone. However, as the team celebrates, Retro-kun takes the trophy from them and …hugs it. He tells them that it’s been in the club room since he joined and that he’ll win it back next year. Sudo drags him off and tells them not to disgrace Tokyo in the nationals.
What happens when you interfere between a man and his trophy.
When Chihaya gets home, she tries to tell her parents about her win, but is ignored once again due to her sister’s appearance on TV. At school she’s ignored as well since the club’s supervisor is more interested in the tennis club than anything else. She also mentions that Desktomu’s grades have fallen recently, so in the hallways, Chihaya begs him not to quit. However, Dektomu isn’t too concerned with grades now. Chihaya invites the team to play at her society since they need to practice for the finals, but it turns out that they’ve already made plans to learn from Nishida’s old teacher.
So at her own society, Chihaya and Taichi get a whole bunch of pointers from Harada and then are told to play a match. Taichi against some strong guy in the society and Chihaya against Harada. It skips over the match however and the next scene is Chihaya shaking and wondering why she can’t go straight for the right card like Harada does. Taichi asks what’s wrong and Chihaya admits that she’s scared of the nationals. Sudo’s words have been bothering her and she’s worried that if they lose miserably, Hokuo (Retro-kun’s team/ school) will say that they should have gone instead. Taichi then hits Chihaya on the head (it sounds worse than it actually is lol) and pulls out a strategy guide given to him from Retro. In it is a bunch of helpful information about teams and such in the nationals. Taichi reminds Chihaya that they defeated the other teams fairly and that seems to cheer her up.
At home, Chihaya finds the house empty with her mother off with her sister somewhere. Chihaya is hesitant about asking her parents for money to travel to the nationals though, since they have yet to pay the mortgage on the house. However, when she opens the paper, she finds the article picture of her team winning the tournament missing. Chihaya goes to the albums of pictures her dad keeps of his daughters and finds it (and pictures from Kana’s photoshoot) there. Chihaya is touched by the fact that her parents DO care.
Next practice in the club, Chihaya is much happier and suggests they shout whenever they take cards. Also, Kana almost kills Nishida (…okay, that’s an exaggeration… kind of) over the fact that he hasn’t memorized the poems yet. As the team practices, their club supervisor stops by to yell at them since she thinks they’re just playing around. However, as she creeps like a stalker from the window, she sees the team practicing all out against each other. You know, like a legit sports team would do. (Also, Kana throws in another speech about how the poems are important. Just so we don’t forget that she’s the one with the historical Japan fetish.) Finally, the supervisor does yell at them to pack up, but she also takes the trophy and says that she’ll have it displayed in front of the principal’s office since it’s important. That, and she borrows a book on the poems (go Kana!) and decides to go to their nationals instead of the tennis club’s.
…Because I know you all want to see pics of Nishida sweating. Admit it.
Of course, it wouldn’t be Chihayafuru without an unnecessary cameo of Arata, so Chihaya has a flashback of asking Arata what Omi Jingu (the place where the nationals are held) is like. He says it’s red. Chihaya sees the building and what do you know, Arata was right. The building is red. Is that seriously all they brought Arata in for?
That is one red building. Never before have buildings been this red.
Okay, I understand that Arata is a significant part of Chihaya’s life, but do they seriously have to include him in every episode ever? I think I’m past the initial “Arata is awesome. Kyaa.” stage now and I’m now just waiting or him to come back and do something. Anything. Really, his lack of doing anything significant these recent episodes has put him on even grounds with Taichi (who is still becoming better and better with each episode) now. Is this intentional to put more focus on the good side of Taichi? I don’t know. It seems like they’re just throwing Arata in there now to distract everyone from the fact that Karuta isn’t really that exciting to watch/to appease the fangirls. …Plus the way Chihaya flashes back to Arata every episode totally makes it look like Taichi doesn’t even stand a chance. Poor guy.
Love triangles aside, it’s nice to see Karuta getting some recognition. Even if it’s from some strict old woman. Personally, I think what happened this episode kind of mirrors what the anime is doing in general. People are seeing a new side to Karuta (or in cases similar to mine, seeing Karuta for the first time) and are now somewhat interested. Maybe not Chihaya level interested, but at least they know a bit about it (and maybe want to learn more). I know that I’m now more interested in Japanese poetry because of it (as were a few of you from what I gathered from the comments). Anyways, bits and pieces of Karuta is spreading. …Which may not be the best analogy since it makes it sounds like a disease.
ANYWAYS, it might be a bit early to think about this, but after the nationals, just where is the Mizusawa Karuta club headed? The tournaments in this anime have lasted 2 episodes at best and I can’t imagine the nationals going on for more than 5 episodes (and that’s only if they reeeeeeeeeeeeeeally drag it out). That would still only bring this anime to episode 17. I’m pretty sure that there’s supposed to be at least 24 episodes to this. Sure what comes next depends on whether or not they win the nationals, but it seems like Chihayafuru has shoved in 12 episodes what some anime take 24 to complete. What else could they possibly do? …Maybe I’m overthinking this.
Preview: Chihaya actually steps inside the infamous red building and Karuta happens. …Probably.