I’ve been wanting to use this image all season
And we come to the end of the first show this season since, like Mondaiji-tachi a couple seasons ago, Diomedea has only given NouKome 10 episodes. How did the series end? And what’s the overall impression?
Complicating the Ending
Even had princess carries as well
They tried to fit a lot into this last episode, and even though they didn’t try to make a full resolution, they still tried to get to some semblance of completeness. And along the way, they apparently tried to fit in a callback to pretty much Every. Single. Thing. that happened throughout the entire series. Including some stuff that only happened in the audio drama short that came along with the ED Single. So we had a return of the Onii-chans vs. Pig Slaves, Ouka’s mom, Konagi’s protectors, Daiko, the popular guy chasing Kanade, and even Class Rep chasing Natsuhiko-san (the audio drama I mentioned). This really made this last episode feel tremendously hectic. Maybe that was the point, to kind of deflect from the reality that Kanade, faced with the ability to get rid of Absolute Choice by picking one of the three main girls to fall in love with, punted and went for the fourth option.
Has Kanade chosen poorly?
Kanade’s not alone in this, tho. Utage apparently picked the exact same thing when she was faced with it, and was completely unprepared for what happened next, but this time she got a lot more prepared, and took quite a large advantage of the happenings. But the net effect was to pretty much bury this episode in a metric ton of WTF. As an all-singing, all-dancing grand finale, it wasn’t so bad, but as a resolution to any of the issues that the show raised, absolutely zilch.
Helping Ouka up, typical of Kanade
Perhaps the biggest message that came out of this episode, and maybe the whole show, is that Kanade is a good guy. Repeatedly shown to never pick a choice that would harm others or trample on their feelings, or at least as little as possible, he sticks to that tenet by keeping Ouka from being tormented longer in the haunted house, and then by picking the fourth choice, even though had he picked a girl, he would have been in love with her, and she with him. He’s still an oblivious guy, but at least he’s a good guy. I think Seira was probably about to beat him over the head for being dense, but it never got there.
More of laughing Ouka is always good
All in all, I was pretty disappointed by this episode. I didn’t really care for Ouka’s being not herself, I almost always think haunted houses in anime are pretty stupid, and even didn’t like Furano mistaking their discussion of the town in Hokkaido for Kanade calling her by her given name. It all kind of worked, but wasn’t all that funny, and wasn’t all that interesting.
The Big Picture
Seira wants you to fall in love with someone
I think overall, NouKome was a successful show, although with a better finale it could have been a lot better. I guess it was too much to really ask for Kanade to fall in love with one of the girls, but in the end, there just wasn’t much progress made, a lot of noise made but not much movement. I could have wished for more explanation of his condition, or for more outright romance, but in the end we didn’t really get any of that, just a continuation of the status quo. Maybe Kanade realizes how much these girls like him, but I doubt it, and that may be the biggest disappointment of all with the show.
Chocolat tried to make the first move
The production from Diomedea was, on the whole, pretty average. Generally well done, there were definitely some areas of iffy animation (especially characters coming towards or away from the camera), and there were some art shifts I didn’t like, like the closeups when girls would eat something. The music was definitely something better about the show, and I like both the OP and ED songs, with S.M.L. by Afilia Saga being a fun ‘throw everything at it’ song, and Taiyou to Tsuki no Cross a nice way to end most episodes, as they were mostly somewhat cliffhangery, so you got a good mood extension. I also still like the handstands in the OP sequence. The voice acting for the show was pretty good, no big names, and no real standout performances, but nobody was terrible.
She got over it quickly
I think the biggest thing that this show had going for it was the flow that I’ve mentioned a few times. It was very good at moving from one thing to another, one setup to another, one joke to another. There were sometimes it would get stalled a little with something dumb, but would always seem to be moving towards something else, and sometimes it would really chain three or four things together for big laughs. The other thing I found interesting about the comedy was that it was all over the map. Sometimes hilarious, sometimes just atrociously bad. Some of the jokes fell so flat that you wanted to just look away for fear of embarrassing the show. But on the whole, it was an enjoyable experience, and a show that I’d recommend to people looking for a few laughs.