Good night, nearly every character that appeared on the screen for any length of time in this episode is screwy. Both male leads, Kai, and two of the girls. The only person who got decent screen time and isn't pining after someone else is Hoshino. Of course this mash of relationships and sorting of feelings is what the entire series is about. At the end of the day though, I'm left wondering just how the pieces will fall, and who will end up with who. So for the record:
- Hoshino & Mao like Kouichi
- Kazuki likes Futami
- Sakino likes Kazuki
- Kai likes Mao
- Kouichi is confused, but dating Hoshino
As for Kouichi, for someone that's dating Hoshino, he sure does spend a lot of time talking about Mao....
Of the other characters, I'm intrigued by Futami. We didn't see her in this episode but for a few seconds, but Sakino and Kazuki both are reacting to events that concern her. Personally, I think Kazuki is right on the money in that she's highly lonely, and because she's so smart isn't socially adjusted enough with her peers to rectify the situation. I think she might have truly liked Kazuki, or at least started that way. Which would explain her fear to talk to him over the summer break. I think the resolution of that triangle (Futami/Kazuki/Sakino) is the one that I'm most interested in.
Anyways, I figured out a way that Otaku can make this particular anime even more interesting. Turn it into a drinking game. Every time their's a scene shift, take a shot--which means that depending on how you count scene shifts you could have 20 (or even more) shots in this 24 minute episode; and I wasn't counting as scene changes the 5-8 minutes of opening, ending and preview.
Finally, I've got to say that Hoshino and Kouichi are the neatest burger eaters I have ever seen. I mean who eats fast food hamburgers like that. It's unnatural. That wax paper is supposed to be pulled off, and conceivably dropped on the floor as you shove as much of the proverbial $0.99 heart attack into your mouth at once. But not these two. No! they've got that paper folded neatly, and they're taking these itty-bitty bites. Freaky, I tell you....
We start this episode with Kazuki lying around, moping in his room. Then the scene shifts over the Sakino, where we learn that he's been hiding out there for 3 days-the length of time since he chatted on the phone with Futami. Then we look in on Kouichi where he whines that Mao is dating so much. Which segues directly into the current date between Mao and Kai. After those two meet up, the scene shifts to Kouichi's and Hoshino's date, where he's complaining that he doesn't get to talk and play with Mao that much anymore. Where Hoshino, rather than smacking him and saying "Hey give me some of that attention," just tells him that she wants to get to know him better. Which is probably a much more subtle way of getting that point across, becuase Kouichi picks up on it. Then continuing our dizzying whirlwind of scenes, we're back to Kai and Mao, where Kai gets a flashback to last episode, and Mao demanding a kiss from him. When he's back to reality, they try to figure out what to do, and Mao says she doesn't want to see a movie, and Kai suggests racing games. Well that makes Mao all emo as she remembers that that's something she does with Kouichi, and she drags him to some shop instead.
Then it's time for another scene shift; this time to Sakino checking on Kazuki. They go have a chat on the river bank, and he lets it slip to this girl that he's really kind of into Futami, and was using the experiments to win her over bit by bit. Which kind of bums out Sakino because she's the one that brought this situation into existence.
Now, we're back to Kai and Mao as they ponder cell charms. Mao flat out asks Kai if he likes her, and gets an affirmative, and proceeds to lead him on. She gets home after that, and finds a book that featured prominently in her shared past with Kouichi, A Dog of Flanders. Scene shift to Kouichi getting home, and he's once more asking about Mao. Yet another scene, this time we get a flashback to how that book features into their past.
New scene again, and it's another date for Hoshino and Kouichi, this time at some burger place. After they finish eating, they go looking for books for their summer book report. Hoshino finds a Tolstoy novel she wants to read, and Kouichi offers to let her borrow his.
New scene, back to Mao, and she's once again being all emo while on a date with Kai. He gets pissy because she's not talking to him, and then storms away.
Another scene shift, and we're at soccer practice with Kazuki and Sakino. He's not playing with his a game, as he's still moping over Futami telling him that she doesn't want to kiss on him anymore. Which makes Sakino mope. Quick flash over to Futami as she is just sitting at home, all by her lonesome.
The scene changes again, this time to Mao just standing on a bridge, watching the traffic.
New scene: Kai putting out the sign, and then staring off into the distance.
New scene: Sakino walking home after practice. Then she stops to stare at the sky for a moment before calling Shijō.
Another scene change takes us to Kouichi knocking on Mao's door. He enters and finds she's not there. Since that had at one time been his room, he goes on in to find his copy of the Tolstoy novel for Hoshino. While in the room, he notices that Mao had A Dog of Flanders out on her desk.
Then we go visit Mao, who's being emo on playground equipment, and remembering the conversation she had with her mother to get her back to Japan. Then some more flashbacks of the two most emotionally charged things that had happened to her lately: Kai asking if he's so untrustworthy that she can't talk to him, and her seeing Kouichi kiss Hoshino.
Quick peek at Kai while he's at work, including a slow pan across his mopey eyes.
Then back to Mao as she comes home. Kouichi is there waiting for her, and he tries to strike up a conversation about the book and life in general. She's having none of it, and walks away, making a snide comment about the book in an effort to push him away. Once she makes it to her room, Kai calls and apologizes for his behavior earlier, blames it on her looking so sad. Then we get to see Mao really break down.
Next scene is them filming again, and everyone is praising Mao because she's doing such a great job. As they're changing locations, Mao sees Hoshino and Kouichi making their flirt-y eyes at each other, and starts to angst again. Once they get to the roof to film the next scene, Mao reacts to one of the lines that Kouichi says--as it's something he had said to her in the past. After Hiiragi calls 'cut' Nana suggest fireworks and they send Kazuki for some water. While getting the water, he whines about Futami to himself. Then Kouichi is hunting for Mao rather than talking to Hoshino and we find out that she's took off, claiming to have something that she had to do.
The scene changes and we find out that that something is go visit Kai.
Scene change and the gang are playing with fireworks, while Hoshino and Kouichi are making eyes at one another again.
The scene goes back to Kai and Mao, and after Kai tries to draw Mao out into telling him what's wrong, he finally gives up and grabs her hand, to take her into the club to get her a drink. Right before they get into the club, she pulls away and tells him that she can't see him anymore.
And then we're finally finished the abrupt scene shifts.