So we had Kouko’s confession right at the end last week! Will Banri get together with her? And can they stay together? Another Tag post with Sumairii for Golden Time coming up!
You know, I didn’t expect anyone to get into a relationship this soon into the show (remember it’s a two-cour). But if you step back and think about it, Golden Time is a drama-romance at its core, so I’m sure things aren’t going to be smooth sailing from here for Banri and Kouko.
“Schoolboy Stuff, Sticky Sweet Romance”
Highway\\ Banri and Kouko are pretty cute together, no? I definitely thought that was cute. Over the top? Sure. Kinda gaggy? Oh yeah. But anyone who’s had that first love knows exactly how that feels, and acts exactly like that. Don’t try to say you didn’t. I know you did!
And yeah, I said first love. What else could you call it? Kouko may have been engrossed by Mitsuo, but even she realizes that really wasn’t love by the time she was old enough to have any understanding of what love really was. And Banri’s a brand new person, for all intents and purposes, a teenager with only 1 year of memories. So neither of them have much in the way of experience, and for that reason I found their excesses of happiness to be pretty authentic. And I think that at least right off the bat, Kouko is dealing with being in a relationship pretty well. There were a couple times where you would start to wonder “Is she gonna obsess about Banri now, the way she obsessed over Mitsuo? And of course, that’s going to be a possibility forever. But I’m fairly encouraged by the way she’s seemed to understand why her relationship with Mitsuo was not really a relationship, and also by her explanation of why she turned down Banri in the first place: that she wanted to learn from it, and do it right. But his moodiness forced her hand and she didn’t want to lose him. I think that’s completely understandable.
Love is for Paris!
And I think Banri’s helped by the relationship too. He certainly seems to be all-in, at least for now. He offers to come pick up Kouko every morning. He doesn’t balk at their togetherness. He goes along with the silly skits as an active participant. I hope they both can learn from being in the relationship, because experience is the best teacher.
Back in the Game
What is this I don’t even
Sumairii\\ I have to agree with Highway that the BanrixKouko pairing is looking pretty good right now. They’re almost like a bakkapuru, with their effusive affections enough to piss off those around them. But we shouldn’t be as annoyed as poor 2D-kun though. This is a genuine couple making their first foray into the world of romance. Who can blame them for being so enthusiastic? Plus, 2D-kun is just there for comedic relief at this point, so we shouldn’t take his gripes too seriously. Someone just play him this classic to help him feel better.
The hijinks of our new favorite couple aside, I think it’s worthwhile to examine the dynamics between Banri and Linda. This is the tail-end of Banri’s “previous life”, and I can only see it coming back to haunt him even though everyone seems to want to move on from it. After avoiding Linda for a while (almost too long, I would say), Banri is forced to confront her thanks to a meddlesome and angry neighbor. Said neighbor is also the death-metal band lead and a former member of the festival club, but I digress. I figured any exchange between the two would end up as an ugly mess, but fortunately I was mistaken. Instead, the two have an accelerated catching-up and any misunderstandings are cleared up.
Last time, I said that Linda probably had romantic feelings for Banri when they graduated, and I still stand by that. However, it seems evident that over the past year of separation, these feelings have mellowed and she has reverted to just seeing him as a little brother. When Banri teared up during her own tearful apology, Linda almost immediately dropped her words, ran to him concernedly, and asked if he was OK. While I’m sure that’s something a lover would do as well, that motion felt to me more like one of a sister or friend. The two are definitely close, but it’s purely platonic; back to square one, as it were.
The first cute episode of Golden Time. I love when shows get couples, because I love seeing stuff like this. Hopefully we get more of happy Kouko and Banri, and the show doesn’t get into too much angst too quickly. But there are warning signs this episode, both with Mitsuo and Linda. Mitsuo because he decides he’s going to go the Kitamura route and gets his hair dyed blonde, and somehow ends up in trouble at the end of the show. And Linda finally confronts Banri, after he avoided her the whole episode. Banri really felt like he was slipping back into pre-amnesia Banri there, falling to his knees and crying for what seemed like no reason. I was wondering if he had remembered his past all of a sudden.
There’s a lot of sappy love to distract us in this episode, but as Highway says, we shouldn’t let that blind us from what’s going on in the background. The threat of Linda perhaps intruding further into Banri’s life as more than a friend again is looming on the horizon now that the two have made up. And Mitsuo remains a wildcard after being “rejected” by little miss whiny voice (I’m being facetious and mean no real disrespect to the great Ibuki Kido). At this point, I want to say he’s still holding on to the hope that Chinami might see him differently, which the show hints she does, but the guy seems to me the least transparent of the cast. I really have no idea what he’s going to do.