All hail the Queen
|I missed following this! *huggles Chihaya* And what an episode to be back because we finally face the Queen and it’s not an old lady but a young girl just like Chihaya. We got some serious competition as she looks like an anti-Arata. Let’s see what she did by joining in with Kara. <3|
|Unfortunately, there’s not a new opening for Chihayafuru (I was secretly hoping for one), but I guess changing some the animation after the childhood friends arc kind of makes up for it. Also, this episode was fantastic. Plus Kyo is back!|
Chihaya is significantly less ill this episode and it’s already the individual rounds. Since players only face the same people in their class, Kana and Desktomu, Taichi and Nishida and Chihaya will all be in different rooms. Chihaya goes to her division to find out who’s she’s facing and runs into Sudo. He gets on the topic of how the current queen, Wakamiya Shinobu, is there too and how she’s the youngest queen in history. Gasp! She also turns out to be the girl Chihaya passed on the stairs last episode. Did I bet money on this? If so, kindly pay up. However, while Shinobu walks by, the bystander’s thoughts aren’t “Holy crap! Youngest Queen in history!!!”, but are more along the lines of “Wtf is she wearing?”. Shinobu then talks to Sudo about how his team lost the regionals, causing him to announce that he’ll destroy her and Chihaya in the tournament. Meanwhile, Chihaya just wonders how she plays karuta.
After this and Nishida’s shirt, I can see why Kana was so set on hakama.
Chihaya wants to win quickly to see the Queen play, but Shinobu finishes long before Chihaya does. Afterwards, Chihaya and Sudo are the only ones who want to play her since she’s so scary good. If this were any other show, Chihaya would be facing Shinobu in a final match, but instead, Chihaya gets her as a second round opponent. Chihaya is all srs bsns from there on.
The match begins and Chihaya looks like she has an advantage since she’s right next to the reader. However, Shinobu is so fast, her hand is still blurred in slow motion. This continues for a few more rounds and Chihaya dubs the move ‘silent karuta’. …Are we naming these things like bankai now? Meanwhile, Taichi wins by default, so he has free time for a round. Nishida tells Taichi to tell Kana that he’s rooting for her, but Taichi obviously runs off to see how Chihaya is doing. Seeing how badly she is losing, he looks at Miyauchi (their sensei)’s videotape and notices that Chihaya moves first, but Shinobu can afford to wait since she’s so fast. Chihaya is looking worried of course, but Taichi knows that Chihaya is just as fast as Shinobu, but only when she’s focusing.
Nothing seems to work for Chihaya. However, the two notice each other’s taste for shirts with obscure mascots and this reminds Chihaya that the Queen isn’t some kind of god, but instead, just another 16 year old girl. This STILL isn’t enough to help Chihaya though, since Shinobu is extremely fast. Shinobu has a little inner monologue here and she talks about how opponents are fired up at the beginning, but when they lose their confidence, it’s like she’s playing by herself.
Some guy leans on the lights and suddenly Chihaya notices that Taichi and Miyauchi are there as well. Also, it’s time for Arata’s unnecessary cameo of the episode as Chihaya remembers her first ever karuta match. Chihaya copies Sudo by standing up (lol as he does the same thing). With her mind back in the game, Chihaya wins a card, only to give it to Shinobu since they touched it at the same time. After that, she uses her super hearing to grab two more cards, amazing everyone. GO GIRL!!!!!!!!!!
And you thought, I would keep on taking the beating?
In YO DREAMS, BOY!
Lame otaku T-shirts are LAME. Taichi, stop showing your desperation…
If only she was Daryl…
Even her grimace is kawaiii
…This anime really likes to prove me wrong. I thought for sure that Chihaya wouldn’t be facing the Queen for a looooong time. I have no idea how I feel about all of this happening in the second round. Just barely after the halfway point of the series too. Will Chihaya win? I’m not so sure. I want Chihaya to win, but if she does, does she automatically take the Queen position? If so, then Chihaya reaches her goal and suddenly she’s at the top of the Karuta world. Where could she possibly go from there? Things would be a lot easier to predict if I knew if this anime intends to finish in one season or not. I could probably figure out more if I went to the manga, but I kind of like being left in the dark. I don’t watch many sports anime, but this one has a talent for doing things I don’t think would work and somehow pulling them off.
That being said, I’ve noticed since last episode that it seems to be Chihaya, Arata, or nothing. Maybe the occasional Taichi scene here and there, but nothing all that substantial. Where is the side character love?! I would have liked to see the other Classes play (or at least someone else in the team), but this episode was 100% Chihaya. Everyone else was skipped over. I want to know how Kana and Desktomu are doing!!! …Though speaking of Kana, has Nishida always had a thing for her? It looked like he had a thing for her this episode. …I’m just going to let that be for now.
I like Shinobu. She’s calm and collected, but she also has that cute side to her that dresses terribly. Also, she talks about how playing karuta for her is like playing alone, but she’s not one of those “WAAA I’M SO RONERY AT THE TOP” characters. She’s pretty much the perfect foil to Chihaya. You saw that blue aura coming off of her. It contrasts with Chihaya’s red (remember how she said that the Chihaya card is bright red for her?). In any case, I’m looking forward to next episode and seeing how Chihaya does. …Maybe we’ll get to see other characters play for once too.
Oh man, I missed the Arata flashback… >.> But that would be me talking about him all the more so let’s skip the fangirling and get into the game because this is srs bsns and Chihaya’s facing the queen early on. If this were a dating sim, I would be quoting Keima here with, “Ending ga, mieta zo!” (Sorry, this was an overspill of Katawa Shoujo), but I’ll be taking a leaf from many a shounen series. This is the time when a young warrior takes the beating from an experienced warrior but as the young warrior has potential, s/he slips in some of their special moves amazing the experienced warrior and piquing their interest. I predict this is how things will go because it would be totally stupid if Chihaya wins now because sure she has worked hard but what about people like Arata who have ate, slept, played Karuta since they could understand it? I’m not sure of Queen’s story but she looks like a hard worker herself, I mean playing Karuta alone and having ninja flash moves like that? It’s not an overnight thing at all. I’m just glad Chihaya’s not having one of those depression phases but is on her alert and trying to read the movements of queen. That is the true sign of a person who wants to learn rather than just win.
Like Kara, I missed the supporting cast as well and can only hope we see their progress in the next episode. I would’ve liked to see Desk-kun’s first win and the continuing matches of Nishida, Kana and Taichi. Who knows we get to see them anyways because in the end, this is not individual but team play and their school has to show some props as the Empress wishes. The thing that I caught on about Taichi is the fact that he wasn’t happy to compete in Class B room. That small grimace was his realization that he needs to reach Class A if he ever wants to play against Arata. I have a feeling it’s going to be an unsaid rule between the boys to compete for Chihaya with Karuta. Call it a wild theory if you will but shoujo boys are stupid and these two have been stubborn from the get-go. Maybe this is the reason, Arata hasn’t been actively talking with Chihaya even when he can? While Taichi’s not really showing all his moves for the same reason? Well, I can’t be an expert of boys but I somehow get this vibe from the plot being a josei and all.
Of course, nobody can ‘get‘ Chihaya as a prize but it’s going to be her making the choice but even with Arata’s shadow looming over them, you can’t really cut out Taichi from the game because he’s there and forever supportive of her now. The conclusion is going to be interesting and I can only hope it’s nothing like guess-for-yourself crap. The current pacing is going brilliantly but I’m unsure if they can wrap things up with 25 episodes because 14 volumes of manga area already out. I’ll be waiting for everyone to level up from their current state, especially Chihaya because she has to match the queen’s ninja-flash movements. I already see her training like hell for it. Anyways, till next time. Ja ne~
Preview: Who will win????