School life


        This episode begins with the girls looking at, and talking about, Ton-Chan as she swims in her tank, but they’re soon distracted by Ritsu tearfully complaining that she’s sick of the drums. Well, when the other girls get to the heart of the matter, they pretty much agree with Ritsu’s conclusion that she’s invisible as the drummer, and now she’s talking about trying another instrument.

 

         Yui casually offers up her guitar for Ritsu to give it a go and then complains about Gitah being unfaithful with her. Azusa and Yui try to help Ritsu with some quick guitar instruction but Ritsu quickly gives up saying it’s not for her. Later, as Ritsu is walking down the hallway, she notices that Sawako is very radiant today, and then after lunch Ritsu tells the girls she’s going to try the keyboard and she says she wants to be radiant like Sawako.  After trying the keyboard for a while it’s suggested that Ritsu try the bass but Mio says no way, she’s the bassist, and she gives her emotional reasons why she loves the bass.

 

        That night, after dinner, at Yui’s house, Ui notices her sister banging around on some glasses and saucers and asks what’s up, and Yui tells her that she’s working on operation Ritsu in the spotlight. The next day its class picture day, and Yui puts operation Ritsu in the spotlight into effect but none of her ideas really work out. On their way home from school, Yui tells Azusa that she’ll play drums if she has to but Azusa tells her that she needs her right where she is.

         Later, in Ritsu’s bedroom, we see her think over her current drum situation, and we see how everything got started with her and the drums. Soon, Ritsu is doing some drumming with her sticks and some CD cases, and she seems to be enjoying herself. The next morning we see Ritsu and Mio running really late for school because Ritsu stayed up late watching a Who DVD. You like their drummer, Mio asks?

        Ritsu and Mio get caught sneaking into class late thanks to Yui, and they notice Sawako with her lower face mostly covered. Later, Sawako shows Yui and Ritsu the damage, she tried something new to look even younger, and the girls tell her she over did it. Up in the clubroom, Ritsu is back to her normal self saying the drums are the only thing for her. Yui tells Ritsu that they’re all one part of a greater whole even though they have different roles. Well, Ritsu tells them why she loves the drums and she’s OK if she’s not really noticed. Mugi tells the other girls that she come up with a new song thanks to Ritsu.

        Well, Mugi plays a few cords of the song with her keyboard for the girls and they like the melody. Mio is put in charge of the lyrics, and Mugi tells her that she’s already named the song, honey sweet tea time. While Azusa, Ritsu, and Yui dig into some tea and honey sweets that Mugi brought, Mio and Mugi try to work on the lyrics for the song. Well, that’s all for this radiant and sweet episode.

        Sorry this review took so long, after watching this episode a few days ago I realized that I really liked the episode but I struggled trying to put it to words. So here it goes, and I hope it makes some sense. While I loved the first season of K-On! for all the reason that I covered in my previous reviews I always thought that the one thing that was the most unrealistic about the series was there no guys, or even interest in guys. Come on now, it’s highly unlikely that five heterosexual cute girls and one hot woman would not have boyfriends or at least some guys sniffing around them, I think most guys find rocker girls very intriguing and attractive. Well, since I guess this anime would never dare to introduce the idea of the girls getting boyfriends or let alone have the girls run into some guys their own age I think I’ll settle for having one of the girls (Ritsu) get a little dose of self awareness. What I mean by this last statement is that most “moe blobs” in these types of shows happily go about their “moe blob” existences without ever achieving any awareness of how the external world views them, so I think that Ritsu desire to be more radiant is a major step in the right direction. Ritsu wants the world to notice her and is thinking about ways to make it happen; after all don’t most of us want the world to take some notice of us. Go ahead Ritsu, shine, baby shine.

       Well, this episode begins with a little skit involving the girls trying to wake a sleeping Yui, and the overflowing storage closet in the music club’s practice room. The closet is so bad that the girls are forced to do some spring cleaning; they have to pull out all the crap out and go through it with everybody taking home what’s their shit. After the girls separate what belongs to them there’s still a lot of stuff from the previous members including an old guitar that Yui finds.

 

       When Sawako enters the room she sees the guitar and tells the girls that it’s her old guitar. Well, the girls tell Sawako that everyone has to take their personal belongings home, but since the guitar is old and musty Sawako suggests that they pawn it and use the money to fund the club. On their way to the music shop the girls decide to stop at a home center to look at a storage unit for the clubroom, and guess what, its Mugi’s first time in a home center. Ritsu and Yui turn the visit into dress up time and have a jolly good time. After Mio and Ritsu pick the unit and setup the delivery we see that Mugi has really loaded up on stuff from the store.

       After finishing up at the home center, the girls take the guitar to the music store and the guy has to take the guitar and do an assessment of its value. When the guy returns the girls are shocked to hear he’ll pay 500,000 yen (about 5,000 USD) for the guitar.

       The girls then get an explanation of why the guitar is so valuable, and they head off for burgers and fries after taking the cash. Over the meal the girls debate what to do with the money and we see the effect it has on everyone except Mugi.

 

        The next day the shelving/storage system is delivered and installed in the clubroom but there’s a problem, Yui still hasn’t taken all her stuff home due to her fear of Ui’s reaction. Then Sawako visits the club to check out the shelves and find out how much they got for the guitar. Well, after trying to dodge the question, Ritsu tells Sawako 10,000 yen, so she asks for the receipt since the money will be added to the club’s account. Just as Ritsu is about to hand over the receipt she attempts to eat it to the cheers of the other girls, but, alas, Sawako retrieves it from Ritsu’s mouth before the meal is finished. When Sawako sees the receipt, the girls beg forgiveness with Ritsu saying the amount overwhelmed her judgment. Sawako says OK, I’ll deposit the 10,000 you claimed, and say the rest was spent on the club stuff, but I’ll buy one thing that you girls agree on. Before Sawako leaves with the cash Yui asks to be slapped in the face with the money and she seems happy.

 

          On their way home, the girls try to decide what they want for the club, an amp, an effects unit, or another frog and the girls see the other clubs working with their new members causing Azusa to sigh. The next day, the girls talk about how they feel that Azusa needs a freshman to look after no matter what she said before. So, Yui comes up with an idea…..later, that afternoon when Azusa enters the club room, the girls introduce Azusa to Ton-chan the new club member, the turtle from the home center that Azusa and Yui were looking at. Azusa isn’t really thrilled, Yui says she thought that Azusa liked it, no I just thought it was strange, Yui liked it. Well, the girls tell Azusa that they thought that she was lonely without a junior to look after, and she seems to accept the turtle saying she’ll look after it from now on. Well, that’s all for this episode.

 

        This episode K-On!! continues its slow paced, five cm/s drift towards graduation and the future. What I mean by this is that while the seasons and the school year slowly moves forward, the girls see the coming end of their halcyon days, and no one more than Yui struggles to enjoy the remaining time as long as possible. I think that the metaphor of the spring cleaning of the storeroom serves this purpose with Ritsu and mainly Yui trying to avoid this task. Yes, it’s partly laziness, but the act of taking all their personal stuff home also symbolizes that their blissful time in the light music room will be ending. Also, this fight against coming adulthood is brought to the forefront when Mio tells Yui that she’s acting like a kid and to act more mature, and Yui says that she’s still a kid. I feel that Yui has it quite right by trying not to rush too quickly to adulthood because don’t most of us look back at high school and think how easy we had it no matter how we felt about it at the time.

      I felt this episode had several funny skits, and it was very adorable watching Mugi’s reaction during her first visit to a home center/super center, while she’s a rich girl she’s really a common girl at her core. Also, seeing Yui in action with the cordless drill and tool belt was priceless, it’s my Moe crack. Seeing how the girls reacted to their share of the money was pretty funny, and all I can say is that Yui’s got some pretty strange money fetishes. Hell, I smack her in the face with a thousand bucks anytime she wants to stop by my house. Overall, I found this episode of K-On!! to be a nice, lazy, but enjoyable dose of Moe entertainment.

 

       This episode begins with Yui arriving at the school early and heading up to the practice room to work on her skills, and once the other girls arrive we find out that Yui got her wake up time wrong again. After the new OP we find out that it’s the beginning of a new school year, Azusa is now a junior, and the other girls are seniors. After Yui makes some small talk about being a senior the girls head to the class assignment board to find out where their home rooms are. Well, Yui pushes her way through the crowd to discover that all four of the girls are in class 3-2, and Mio sheds tears of joy.

        Once the girls see that even Nodoka is in the same class, Mio wonders if the fix was in. Mio’s question is soon answered when they discover that their homeroom teacher in none other than Sawako. Later, in the hallway, Sawako confirms Mio’s suspicion and girls all express their thanks before being sent to the welcoming ceremony. During the welcoming ceremony we’re treated to the student body singing the school song, and a strong motif of the segment is falling cherry blossoms. Also, Nodoka reminds Yui that the club needs to find new members so Azusa won’t be all alone next year.

         The club concentrates on trying to get new members, passing out fliers, wearing costumes but to no avail. The club redoubles their efforts to get new members by trying all sorts of sneaky tactics and even resort to observing other clubs. Back in the club room, Sawako and Nodoka join the girls and they plan for tomorrow’s performance at the orientation ceremony, and Yui hopes someone will join the club after hearing them play like Azusa did.

         Before their performance, Yui makes a pitch to get new members to join the club, and we only see the last few seconds of the show. Later, the girls feel their show went great and they head off to pass out fliers. After no one shows up to the club Azusa tells her other friends that the club must not be popular but they tell her the club looked awesome, and they heard some freshmen say so. They tell Azusa that the problem is they might appear too hard to mingle with because they seem so close. While Azusa is with her friends, the other four brainstorms about how to get new members and Yui says it’s OK like this for a while longer with just the five of them. Sawako reminds them that they only have this year; Yui says it’s a long time but Sawako says a year is really short; Azusa overhears this conversation and seems happy.

       As the girls are about to dig in to some snacks Azusa walks in and Yui is about to rush out to continue passing out fliers but Azusa stops her. She asks for some tea and the Banana cake Yui felt Azusa wanted, and she tells the other girls that she’s fine with this year just having the five of them. Azusa tells Yui that she’s not going to go easy on her this year, and Yui pleads to the sky for a freshman to save her. Then we get treated to a new ED song and animation, and that’s all for this episode.

       Well, theirrrrrrrrrrrrrrr back, cute girls doing cute things for my male amusement, and I love it. Yes, I can’t deny it, Lucky Star, Sora no Woto, and K-On! what can I say, I love watching cute girls doing cute things. The world could be ending and all I would need is a couple of beers and a good dose of Tsukasa, Kanata, and Yui and I’d feel fine.

        OK, the new series gives us a new OP and ED, I think the new OP featuring Yui’s vocals is all right but not great, and the new ED featuring Mio’s vocals is good, but neither is as good as the first season’s OP or ED.  While the first episode of second season pretty much follows the same formula as the previous season there are some differences, the first season began with Yui’s frantic rush to make it to her first day of high school on time which could be viewed as Yui’s unorganized, disjointed, and chaotic journey towards the future and maturity. But, the way Yui started the second season infused the episode and the start of the second season with a totally different flavor, and I tasted a strong dose of mono no aware along with a hint of melancholy.

        While Yui and the other girls are still moving towards their bright futures, whatever they may be, Yui who’s been the most emotionally receptive of the girls is realizing that an important chapter of their young lives is about to come to a close. I don’t really know if Mugi, Mio, and Ritsu understand how close the five of them are but Yui understands this and Azusa was made aware of how close they all are to each other by her friends telling her how other girls view their group.

         While the second season might have all the silly stuff from the first season I think the series is going to become more focused on the girls’ relationships with one another and we’ll see a pretty heavy dose of introspection before it’s all over. Good animation, good music, a few laughs, and cute girls doing cute things, that’s good enough for me.

      This episode begins while winter is in full swing with Kureha and Kanata conducting a patrol that was ordered by HQ. While deep in the back country, near the observation stations, Kanata spots a fallen person in the snow. When Kanata and Kureha are examining the fallen woman they discover that she’s a Roman soldier.

 

      Back at the fortress, we watch Noel standing near the completed tank having a flashback from several years ago, Noel is getting praised for completing a project and we hear a military officer tell her that we can win with this.

 

        Then Filicia brings Noel in a room where Kureha and Kanata are working on the woman and Filicia tells Noel that they found a Roman soldier, Noel seems to go into shock. As the woman’s condition is touch and go, Noel says she’ll care for the woman. Filicia, Kanata, and Kureha search the woman’s pack finding a bugle, pistol, map, and other things and Kanata says she thought the enemy would look more evil.  Well, Kureha gets angry at Kanata but Filicia defuses the situation by reminding Kanata that she has to play recall. Kureha asks Filicia about the peace conferences not going well, no.

 

      Kureha asks Filicia about reporting this, Filicia says if so, she’ll be taken and interrogated, Kureha says she’s in enemy territory, so torture can be expected, Filicia says interrogation and asks Kureha for more time to make her decision, Kureha tells Filicia to remember that they’re soldiers. Filicia asks her if anyone saw them bring her back but Kureha doesn’t know since they were busy with her.  Alone, Filicia asks what Rio would do. Then the scene switches to the observation posts where we see a Roman army unit making their way through the area, and we see part of the observation post light up.

 

      The next morning, the Roman soldier wakes and tries to overpower Noel but a quick breast grab puts her back in her place with a scream. Kanata and Kureha come rushing in and Kureha tries to question her but all they get out of her is her unit, name, and serial number, (she’s A’ishah Aldora, from Company B, 13th Tank Battalion, 1st Tank Division of the Roman Empire) none of them speak Roman. Filicia enters the room and makes some pretty racy comments seeing if she can get a reaction out of her to determine if she understands any of their language.  Filicia says they need to find someone who speaks Roman, they’ll hold her until they interrogate her and file a report, and Kureha says whatever happens it’s not her fault. When the Roman girl hears the name of the Time Keeping Fortress she begins to breakdown saying she made it.

 

      Well, as Kanata and Noel feed the captive and attempt to communicate with her, Noel says she wishes she had studied Roman, and Kanata gets an idea. Later, Kanata plays the trumpet for the captive, and Kanata offers it to the prisoner and she plays a few bars of amazing grace. Kanata tries to ask her about the song but they still can’t understand each other.  Well, at that very moment Naomi shows up with Yumina, it seems that someone saw Kureha and Kanata returning with the Roman soldier after all. Well, Naomi tells Filicia and the girls that the army is on the move to this town and if it has anything to do with this Roman soldier then there’s trouble.

 

      Yumina knows how to speak Roman and starts talking to A’ishah and she calls Yumina a heretic, Kureha starts to get pissed. Yumina asks A’ishah why she’s here, she won’t say anything about her mission but she does say she wanted to see the bones of the angel that’s supposed to be in this town. A’ishah says her grandmother was at this fortress and was captured on the Eastern front where she met her grandfather, and she told her about the bones when she was a child. I’ve always wanted to see the angel my grandmother had seen. The angel of apocalypse that brought retribution upon the world and it seems that A’ishah and Yumina have a slight religious disagreement.

 

       A bugle call sounds in the distance and Kanata decodes it saying that the 1st Royal Guard Battalion, 9th Mobile Division has arrived. The unit is commanded by Colonel Hopkins, the demon of Binnenland who revived ancient weapons that wiped out three towns in one night, at the mention of his name Noel slides to the floor in a fetal position. Filicia hugs Noel and says that the Colonel doesn’t know she’s here. Naomi says whatever you’re going to do you better hurry, Kureha says they have to hand her over but Kanata argues that Rio wouldn’t what her to suffer, so Filicia issues an order as the commander and takes sole responsibility.

 

       A few moments later, Colonel Hopkins tells Filicia and the group that a Roman scout was captured in Treize but due to an accident during interrogation, well……. He says there were reports of Roman forces in the area and maybe even a prisoner, Filicia says she doesn’t know anything, and the Colonel says effective right now command of this fortress is transferred to the 9th Mobile Division.

 

       Meanwhile, Noel, A’ishah, Naomi, and Yumina are hiding while the Colonel’s forces search the fortress.  Yumina and A’ishah share a private conversation on the legend of the fire maidens and it gets a start out of Yumina. A’ishah asks Yumina what Noel’s name is so Yumina tells her it’s Noel, and A’ishah calls her Noel Kannagi which Yumina says is correct. A’ishah calls her Noel Kannagi of the invisible death; Noel screams and runs away from the rest of the group.

 

      When the Coronel hears the scream he begins to grin, A’ishah follows Noel into the hallway as soldiers are drawn towards the scream. The phone begins to ring as soldiers stumble into Noel and A’ishah in the hallway. Kanata answers the phone and is informed that a large Roman force has been spotted massing between no man’s land and the town of Seize.  The episode ends with Noel and A’ishah being surrounded by soldiers with their rifles at the ready, a shot rings out and……Well, that’s all for this episode.  

 

       Well, here we go, war has shown up on the doorstep of the Time-keeping Fortress, and what the hell was Felicia thinking. While we’ve been shown that the peace talks between Helvetia and the Roman Empire weren’t going well the beginning of the episode gave us a hint that Helvetia is getting really worried because it struck me as highly unusual to see Kureha and Kanata out on winter patrol which is later confirmed by Hopkins mentioning the capture of a Roman scout a few days earlier.

       I think that Kanata and Kureha did a great job handling the injured Roman soldier; In the Army we had a procedure for handling EPW’s (Enemy Prisoners of War) called the 5-S’s which stood for #1-Search the prisoners for weapons and documents, #2-Segerate the captives by rank and status, #3-Silence the prisoners so they can’t plan with others for escape, #4-Speed the captives to your HQ or other collection point, and #5-Safeguard the prisoners while in custody, a dead or abused prisoner has no intel value.

       But, I have to ask Felicia what the hell was she thinking; Filicia was supposed to be the combat experienced leader that would keep the girls as safe as possible even in a war situation, and make no mistake, once the girls found a Roman soldier inside Helvetia territory Filicia should have known they were back at war. Once Kanata, Kureha, and Filicia searched A’ishah’s pack even a fool could tell by the light nature of her load that she was an advance scout and the main force would be close by. It might have been a different story if they found the scout lugging an 80 pound pact with a few weeks of food in it but that wasn’t the case. Filicia didn’t call HQ and report the incident. Hell, the least she could have done was put the fortress and town on higher alert, she could have sent the girls out on a rotating basis checking for the enemy. What was she going to do, just sit around like normal and wait till the enemy captured the town and fortress and end up having the girls captured, raped, killed, or maybe all three. I have to agree with Kureha saying that they should have reported it, when you’re a soldier you know what can happen if you’re captured by the enemy, sorry, but that’s the breaks.

        While I found Noel’s further back story interesting it does strain the bounds of reality; in this world only a loli girl can unlock the secrets of the past to recreate a weapon of mass destruction. Also, Filicia is completely wrong, I’d be willing to bet that Hopkins knows damn well where his angel of death is hanging out; Noel’s too valuable a military asset to just forget where she’s located. 

        Now, about the ending, I can accept a lot of different endings. I could accept all the girls dying in battle together, or Kanata being the sole survivor just like Filicia was. I could accept Hopkins coming out with some crazy nuclear weapon and the harmonics for Kanata’s music being the key to deactivating it. I could accept the war being fought and Kanata having to play amazing grace to remember the fallen. I can accept the girls’ using the tank to kick the shit out of the Roman’s whose equipment looks a lot older. I could even accept Rio showing up at the last minute with a peace treaty and all three of the girls playing amazing grace to signal the end of the war since the Roman emperor got his third piece of ass. But, one thing I won’t accept is Kanata using her trumpet to cause everyone to sit around the campfire together drinking, smoking, and hugging each other. Well, only time will tell, make love not war, Claus keep your dirty hands off Kureha she’s all mine.

      Well, this episode picks up with Sawako wondering if Chizu was able to give Ryuu his birthday gift. Later that night Chizu is laying in bed thinking about that very same thing when she grabs the gift and decides to head over to Ryuu’s to give him his gift. By the time Chizu arrives at Ryuu’s, Tooru has already left, and Ryuu and Chizu share some unkind words and Ryuu ends up telling Chizu to give up on his brother, and Chizu throws Ryuu’s gift at him.

       Later, at school, Sawako and Ayane both commiserate over their uselessness and their inability to be much of a help to Chizu in the current situation. Soon, Kazehaya joins Sawako and Ayane in a stairwell conversation over the whole Chizu/Ryuu/Tooru thing, and he sort of reassures them that Chizu should be alright since she has two friends that worry and care for her.

 

    When Chizu arrives in class, there’s a tension between her and Ryuu. Also, there’s a tension between Ayane, Sawako, and Chizu, but Ayane leaves Sawako a note saying to treat Chizu normally, and if she needs support they’ll be there if she needs to cry her eyes out.

        When lunch period begins, Kazehaya takes off with some of the boys leaving Ryuu and the three girls in the classroom. When Chizu takes off to buy some lunch Ryuu gets up and leaves a few seconds later leaving Ayane and Sawako to wonder if he went after Chizu. When Ryuu confronts Chizu in the stairwell he has to grab her arm to keep her from walking off. Chizu starts shouting at Ryuu drawing the attention of the other students including Sawako and Ayane. Chizu asks if Ryuu thought she needed to be rejected, yeah. Chizu tells Ryuu that she didn’t fall in love with Tooru to be disappointed and she runs off.

       Sawako and Ayane catch up with Chizu and Sawako starts balling and this leads to Chizu cutting loose. Chizu cuts loose with everything that happened, she lets it all out, and Ayane and Sawako are just kind of there for her. Chizu tells them of her anger at Ryuu, her frustration over Tooru, and that she’s most disappointed about how she threw Ryuu’s birthday gift in his face. Chizu ends up crying while Ayane and Sawako hold her, and on their way home Chizu says she feels a lot better and is ready to eat some cake. The episode ends with Ryuu placing a telephone call to his brother about Chizu.

       Well, in this episode Sawako seems to have learned another important lesson about friendship, that being, if you can’t directly help your friend, just be there for them.  Since the end of the last episode, and through most of this episode, Sawako has been agonizing about her inability to be any real help to Chizu even though Ayane tries to tell her there’s not much you can do.  Also, Kazehaya shows a remarkable amount of wisdom in this episode, and his words seem to really help Ayane and Sawako. But, it was also quite funny when he tells Sawako and Ayane that he would most likely be useless if he was in the same situation, sometimes there are no right words to help ease the pain.  In the end I guess it all worked out of the best with Sawako’s tears causing Chizu to let loose all her sadness and frustrations in the hallway. I think that Chizu letting loose of her emotions was very healthy and is the first step in her journey of coming to terms with her feelings and herself. Well, I’m looking forward to the next episode to see if Ryuu is going to manage to set something up between his older brother and Chizu that’ll help ease Chizu past this rough spot and lead to some emotional closure for her.

       This episode begins with Sawako leaving her house for her first sleepover, after saying goodbye to her parents she heads off to school. At school, we see Ryuu run into Chizu in the hall and he’s about to tell her something when she get pulled away by Ayane and Sawako. Before walking off, Ryuu tells Chizu to not stop by his house tomorrow or the next day, and Ayane wonders if Chizu made Ryuu angry.

       Once the girls get to Chizu’s place we see that she’s steaming because she wanted to borrow a game from Ryuu for their sleepover, and Ayane asks Chizu what she did to make him mad. After explaining how she booted him out the other night, Chizu wonders what she’s going to do because one of her banned days is Ryuu’s birthday. Chizu gets really upset about not being able to give Ryuu his birthday gift. Ayane suggests that they drop it off tonight, and if he gets angry, so be it.

       Over at Ryuu’s place, we see that Kazehaya, Ryuu, and four other guys are hanging out and joking around when Chizu, Ayane, and Sawako walks in on them.  Well, it turns out that the boys were holding a party to cheer up Jo after his confession “crash and burn”, and soon a little bit of kidding takes place about how the broken hearted Ayane and Jo should hookup. After joking around for a while everyone just hangs out and chats, and Sawako just sort of enjoys taking it all in.

       When Ryuu gets up to get more stuff Chizu takes the opportunity to follow him and try to give him his gift. Chizu asks Ryuu, “Are you angry with me”?  Ryuu tells her, “no, but I can even be hurt being sent out like that”. Chizu says she’s sorry and she says she’s ready to listen to anything he has to say to her.

        Well, just as Ryuu begins to talk, Tooru walks inside the door. Tooru sees Chizu and calls her Chii, and she rushes over and begins to hug him. Tooru got off work early and came home a day early. During the confusion of Tooru’s arrival, Chizu gets a big shock when a young woman walks in behind Tooru. His girlfriend, Chizu asks? No, it’s my fiancée. Chizu turns as white as a ghost and goes into shock.

        After a few seconds, Tooru formally introduces his fiancée, Haruka Katayama, to his younger brother Ryuu, and to the girl he’s always loved as his younger sister, Chizu. After Tooru and Haruka have said their hellos, Kazehaya suggests that it’s time to break this party up and head home. So, everyone says their goodbyes to Ryuu and heads home. As Chizu turns towards home with a forced smile on her face Sawako wonders what she’s thinking.

       Later, Ryuu thanks Shota for getting everyone to leave because he says if he would have intervened Chizu would have gotten even more flustered. Ryuu tells Shota that he would have been alright with Chizu getting angry with him, but he’s pretty sure she’s depressed now.  As, Kazehaya is ridding off he realizes that Ryuu really loves Chizu.

       Back at Chizu place, after four hours of playing cards, Ayane asks Chizu if she alright. Chizu says she’s OK even though it’s clear that she’s not really OK. Ayane tells Chizu there are other guys in the sea, but that really doesn’t seem to cheer her up. It’s getting really late (4:30) so the girls decide to call it a night and hit the sack.

      Sawako falls asleep thinking about what happened to Chizu and her unrequited love. The next morning Sawako sees Chizu getting dressed, she reaches for the mini-skirt but changes her mind and goes for her regular stuff, and Sawako is at a loss for words. After Chizu sees Ayane and Sawako off, Sawako is upset to the point of tears because she could offer no support to Chizu, but Ayane says she didn’t offer much real support either.

       When Chizu gets to Ryuu’s house she hears laughter coming from inside and sits on the stoop thinking that she’s not really their daughter, not really their little sister, and she’s just a neighborhood kid. Chizu sits there thinking back to all her childhood memories of her trying to get Tooru’s attention; he never got mad and only smiled. Chizu says there were always girls around Tooru but none of them ever lasted, so that’s why she felt that she would have been his wife someday. Chizu gets up and heads towards home thinking that she won’t be the one living the dream of being Tooru’s wife. Well, that’s all.

      Well, it wasn’t much of a surprise watching Chizu’s unrequited love come crashing down in flames around her. In this episode and the last episode Sawako was quite happy watching Chizu bask in the joy of her unrequited love but Sawako is also learning that love is tough. In this episode we saw Chizu at her most girly, normally a tomboy, we watch her worry about her style, her appearance, and we see there’s a really a shy girl buried underneath her tough exterior. Chizu’s upbeat and happy mood about seeing Tooru was perfectly contrasted by Ryuu’s dark and foreboding mood.  

       The way the last couple of relationships have been going at Sawako’s school reminds me of the Lady Gaga song, Bad Romance. Let’s see, Jo gets shot down in flames, Kurumi can’t get what she wants, Ayane gets treated like shit, Chizu as reality crush her, and Ryuu’s love is in love with his older brother.

      I really felt bad for both Chizu and Ryuu; Chizu for having reality smash her dream, and for Ryuu being in a no win situation. Anyway Ryuu could have played this situation he would have ended up with Chizu becoming depressed over Tooru’s upcoming marriage, or Chizu being pissed at him for not telling her that Tooru was in town. So, maybe, it was best that Chizu found out about Tooru in the way she did.

      If I could do anything to shake this series up it would be to start shipping some crazy relationships; Ayane/Jo, Kurumi/Ryuu, and Pin/Chizu since they’re both dense. Oh-well, I guess I have to wait for 52 episodes before anyone even holds hands or shares a real kiss.

         This episode begins in November with Chizu telling Sawako that she can’t wait of the New Year to arrive. Sawako tells herself that her feelings towards Kazehaya are advancing but Sawako also notices that others around her are having relationship problems. Sawako and Chizu notice that Ayane is having a problem with her boyfriend, he seems to be getting very possessive of Ayane by constantly calling her and demanding to know what she’s doing and whom she’s with. Well, Chizu asks why she’s going out with him. Ayane laments that he hit on me, and it’s always guys like him that seem the most mature in the beginning.

         Sawako also notices how alike Chizu and Ryuu are, how they even have the same aura, and she wonders if Chizu likes Ryuu.  Then the scene switches to Ryuu’s place where we hear Ryuu’s father tell Chizu that sometimes he wishes she was his daughter, and she wishes she could. Chizu casually walks in on Ryuu while he’s changing, and they hangout playing games and Chizu talks about Ryuu’s birthday. While they’re hanging out we see two things; firstly, that Ryuu has been attracted to Chizu since middle school, and secondly that Chizu gets all flushed and it’s not over Ryuu.

         The next day, after school, Chizu invites Sawako and Ayane to go shopping with her. Ayane begs off saying she has to see her boyfriend right away, so Sawako and Chizu head off to shop for Ryuu’s birthday gift. As Chizu and Sawako are leaving the school grounds they see one of Kazehaya’s friends (Jo) chase after a girl and confess to her only to be rejected in a humiliating way.

         While at the shopping center, Chizu picks out Ryuu’s gift, and the girls look at clothes. On their way home, Sawako sacks up and decides to ask Chizu if she likes anyone. Well, as Chizu tells Sawako about her unrequited love Sawako thinks its Ryuu she’s talking about but it turns out to be Ryuu’s older brother (Tooru). Chizu basically laughs off the idea of liking Ryuu in that way; she loves him like a brother and doesn’t think Ryuu knows she has the hots for his brother.

 

       Back at school, Chizu continues to show Sawako more pictures of mini-skirts wanting one by New Years. Well, Chizu drops Tooru’s name and New Years in front of Kazehaya and Ryuu causing an awkward silence.

       Then the relationship shit really hits the fan when Ayane walks into class with a bandage on her face.  Ayane tells them that she met with her boyfriend, told him her true feelings, told him she was dumping him, and he slapped her. She goes on to tell them that he told her stuff like I only have you, and she concludes that he didn’t even listen to her. She tells them it’s not like she wanted it to end this way, and Sawako thinks to herself that love is tough and comes with break ups.

        Later, Kazehaya and Ryuu talk about Chizu with Kazehaya asking Ryuu if he’s told Chizu. No, should I tell her. Yes. Then we switch scenes to the girls where Chizu says they’ll have a sleepover on Friday to help cheer up Ayane.

         That evening, Ryuu stops by Chizu’s place and enters her room, and Chizu is a little bothered when Ryuu enters her room in the same casual manner she entered his room. Ryuu sits next to her and moves in close for the confession when she hops away from him to stop him from seeing is birthday gift. Chizu then tells Ryuu to leave and hustles him out of the house leaving Ryuu to wonder WTF. As Ryuu is heading home we hear Sawako comment on how she never thought about love before, and that it must be difficult and this is because she’s fallen in love with Kazehaya. Well, that’s all for this brew of teen hormonal angst.

        Well, after resolving the Kazehaya/Sawako/Kurumi love triangle, and slowly moving Sawako’s and Kazehaya’s relationship forward, Kimi ni Todoke focuses its lens on Chizu and Ryuu. While Sawako’s and Kazehaya’s dance was one of shyness, longing glances and tentative touches, Chizu and Ryuu’s dance is more complicated and fraught with dangerous land mines.

       Chizu and Ryuu, childhood friends, as close as brother and sister, both sharing unrequited loves, Chizu loves Ryuu’s older brother and Ryuu loves Chizu. While both unrequited loves might be filled with equal longing, Chizu’s longing is for is a virtual stranger she hasn’t seen in two years, and she might find out that her love is for a shadow, a past image, a fondly remembered vision of a boy that’s now a man who might not still exist in the present. But, I feel that Ryuu’s unrequited love for Chizu is far more painful, his love sits right next to him in class, sits next to him on his bed, so close that he can feel the warmth of her body, smell her scent, so close that he can reach out and touch her hair. While Kazehaya advises Ryuu to come clean and confess his feelings to Chizu, it’s a dangerous approach that could backfire and drive Chizu away from him. I really liked how Ryuu decided to go for it and let the chips fall where they may but due to Chizu’s reaction to him almost seeing his birthday gift he was left even more confused than before, girls and women have that effect and it doesn’t get better with age.

       Also, Sawako continues to show slow but steady progress in her maturation into a normal teen aged girl. When the series began, Sawako never really noticed the subtle byplay occurring between boys and girls, but her newly awakened feelings for Kazehaya has made Sawako more aware of the world around her, and she discovers love is tough.

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