Start happy, get sobered up pretty quick.
– Oh neat, a school festival episode! I wonder what everyone is gonna be up to for this?
– Midori was playing a bass guitar. It’s pretty cool that she seems to have the talent and muscle memory for both. It’s probably easier for her to play due to her size too, hah.
– Oooo, Nozomi was playing. Look at how happy Mizore is!
– I like this brief cut of Asuka conducting. It’s not uncommon to see a more senior student take a role like this, and conducting is hard for most students. That she’s confident in conducting for something like a culture festival performance is cool. Also check out the ictus with her baton hand. Pay attention to the way the tip moves and how it’s usually pointed up instead of forwards. She’s conducting the standard 4/4 pattern, but some of the movements are smaller than you’d expect, particularly on beat two (after the first downbeat she conducts). Since her movements aren’t too large, it was harder to tell at first exactly where she was placing her beats. Did good though!
She’s also gripping the bottom of the shaft (get your minds out of the gutter!) with two fingers and using her middle finger for support, like a real person would. There are tons of different conducting styles out there, but this matches up with something a relative newbie would do. She’s even conducting with both hands in sync, something newer people tend to do. Just look at Taki last episode and then this cut of Asuka this episode to see the difference. Independence of hands is a tough habit to break for most newcomers. All that said, this cut looks really nice in motion.
– What was that look……..? Asuka’s sideways glances of misery have been going on for a little while now, but even during something like this festival is kinda odd.
– Ah, the song from the first episode with the whole band this time! It sounds so much fun with a more full ensemble.
– I would go to their cafe! A shame the aggressive maid cafe didn’t work. And Reina showing up was great.
– That cat cafe looks fun, haha.
– Mizore is pretty cute as a maid. Natsuki even more! Nozomi is here too!
– Natsuki and Yuko teasing each other is the lifeblood that fuels my existence. The elaborate zoom-in cut as Yuko picks up her spoon, along with the preceding hilarious faces and banter, makes this brief moment so much fun.
– Shuuichi is embarrassed. Reina is keeping his spineless self at bay, haha.
– Look at Taki. All these girls surrounding him. Hashimoto is totally right about his personality, haha! Reina is ready to shed some blood right now. Haha. Her jealousy is hilarious. She always plays it cool, but for him it’s always different.
– I was almost hoping Kaori would be in the Tuba-kun costume.
– Kumiko is right. Asuka looks good with a witch hat! It’s good to see her and Kumiko playing around too. And Haruka always reining her in show that things don’t change no matter where the two of them are!
– The voice acting is keeping this episode very engaging. That half-hearted, trailing off “Reina” Kumiko spoke before she got scared was so good. Then the panic in her voice when the lights went off! Haha. When Kumiko got scared it was great to see her act a little more vulnerable than she usually is. And Shuuichi is starting to maybe try and grow a spine? Reina ruining his moment seem never gets old, though this time it was hilarious. Reina trying to read into that situation a little was funny, and Kumiko still has that disinterested reaction every time his name is mentioned.
– Oh wow, Mamiko wants to drop out of college? The argument from a few episodes back makes much more sense now if something like this was related to that. I wonder what’s going on? Kumiko wasn’t wrong about her argument towards her, but at the same time it’s impossible to choose a side without all the info first. Clearly something has Mamiko distraught. Surprised she chose to escape the place rather than stick it out, but Kumiko hasn’t really been too confrontational till this season.
– Neat, she met up with Taki. His daughter? Haha. The way she realized she put her foot in her mouth after noticing the ring was great… But then Taki’s reaction tells me I think I know where this is about to go. I think I know what those flowers are for. I like how they just used leg shots for Kumiko’s attempt at escaping. It fully communicated everything important about the scene.
– I figured something like this would come sooner or later. I’m curious as to how far this scene will go. Also, I love the car.
– Ah, Taki’s dad was the adviser. His wife’s goals sound pretty familiar, *cough cough*. Even just as little that he did say unveiled a lot about his character and his motivations. The mention of what the flowers mean in the next scene basically says, in no uncertain terms, exactly what Taki was doing if you didn’t already figure it out. Man, am I really sad for Taki. I really hope he gets his happy ending somehow.
– Uh-oh. This ending doesn’t seem good for Asuka.
Well, this week a lot of new plot threads were introduced, and a few things teased earlier in both this season and the last finally came to the fore a bit more. I wonder where all these new plot threads are going to go, and look forward to seeing how it all comes together! With Kumiko in the middle of most of it, I wonder how she’s going to process everything that’s going on. With her in on Taki’s secrets, she privy to a whole separate set of circumstances she can’t really talk to anybody else about. I’m interested in seeing if this wears her down, or she rises to the occasion and continues to overcome her social shortcomings by facing the issues head-on like she’s been demonstrating she can.