So much adrenaline
Whatever the reason, I love these episodes. The ones where Banri and Kouko break through the facades they both put up, and really get to the feelings that they’re both keeping bottled inside. The last one ended up with them being closer together, but can they have any positive effect this time?
Trying to recover right afterward leads to a lot of reflection
Having an accident is always going to be something that shakes you up. So it’s understandable how much the whole group is affected by what ended up being a minor shunt. Of course, if things hadn’t gone the way they did, with Banri waking up and putting on the brakes, they could have ended up much worse and it’s certainly a tendency of humans to worst-case everything. But even with that, I think Kouko’s reaction is a bit more than warranted. Chinami’s got a split lip, everyone else is shaken up, but otherwise alright, and she just keeps thinking about how she could have killed everyone.
Everyone says “It’s my fault.”
And everyone else moves on a bit, even if when they get together they play a lot of “No, I’m the one to blame!” The truth is that they were all there, and everyone made some decisions that in hindsight should probably have been different. And while 2D-kun thinks it’s a big deal and wonders about other people who toss accidents off as nothing major, the answer’s probably in the middle. It’s not that big a deal, but it is for these inexperienced kids. It’s certainly nothing as major as Banri’s accident, but I don’t know if the rest of the group knows about that. And the gloominess has the effect of pissing Nana-senpai off, who reads Banri the riot act for sending his bad vibes through the wall at her.
Don’t tick her off
What Is He Playing At?
Quite the force to knock her across the parking lot
I don’t really understand Kouko’s father throughout here. If we think back, he’s already warned Banri that he shouldn’t be involved with Kouko. And here, he starts off with an unconscionable backhand slap upon first seeing her after the accident. There’s lack of parental support, and then there’s this, which is just ‘she’s too much of a bother’. If it was me there instead of Banri, I probably would have gone to comfort her, but this is one of those cultural things that I probably just don’t understand. After that, he apparently goes to all the parties involved and apologizes and makes reparations: Chinami, 2-D-kun, even the police / road department (and it can seem harsh to make people in an accident pay for traffic barrier replacement, but someone’s gotta pay for it). So because of that, I was sure that he was keeping Kouko from going out or contacting her friends or her boyfriend, and I was wondering what was going to happen when Banri came to visit. Yet, their meeting went splendidly well, for the most part. He even leaves Banri to talk to Kouko in her room alone.
Learning to Be an Adult
JC Staff has been doing great work with emotional Kouko
My favorite theme for this show returns, as Kouko again realizes that she’s not as grown up as she pretended to be. The place she’s wrong is that there’s no line you cross, there’s no threshold for a door that you go through, and you’re now an adult. Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone has to experience things to grow up . People have accidents, people make mistakes, people own up to those mistakes. And this time Banri is wrapped into the lesson as well, as Kouko points out that he’s doing the same running away from his past that he’s telling her not to do. And also, this is the first time we’ve seen these two have an argument, something that’s really important for a couple. And as arguments go, this was a good one: bringing up the past, moral superiority, all sorts of hurdles cleared. And the thing that comes through to me is that they don’t want to argue with each other. They want to get it out, and then not be angry anymore. I thought both the argument and the ending to it were very natural, a sharp flame that burned out, because they really don’t have that much to argue about the other person. And Kouko declaring her love for Banri again, and her desire to grow, really does feel authentic, and that her father heard it is I think a more important point than just Banri’s or Kouko’s embarrassment. He thinks that she’s a child, but stating love and resolve like that isn’t something a child does.
It’s a joke, but also a touching scene
I don’t really like seeing arguments in TV, but for some reason, the ones between Kouko and Banri make the best television for me. I really love the way their romance is playing out, and I really like that the show isn’t teasing us with love triangles and the other woman. Seeing a couple like Banri and Kouko working through their relationship is something I really like, much more than “will they / won’t they.” I know there are still a lot of people who don’t like the Banri x Kouko couple, but I think it works for the show, and it works a lot better with them being this committed.
I also want to say that Satomi Satou’s role as Nana-senpai in this show just cracks me up, especially with her character songs that have been released. It’s amusing to listen to a death metal song and see the mental images of some of the other characters she’s played. Check out the song if you haven’t, and just imagine Eru Chitanda singing it…