Zetsuen no Tempest – 05

Mahiro and Yoshino retrieve another talisman from an aquarium, and are ambused by Kusaribe Tetsuma and his henchmen, who attempt to take them into custody, but fail, and are forced to withdraw. Hakaze leads Mahiro and Yoshino to the apartment of Junichiro a former clan member-turned-college student who is holding on to a special talisman. He offers to light them incense for Hakaze, whom he believes died, having seen her skull, as presented to him by Samon.

Everything happens for a reason. The daily tragedies and misfortunes are all meaningful events, leading toward an ideal conclusion.

We’ve mentioned it before, but we’re really loving the use of Hamlet in this series so far; even though we’re not even that familiar with the play, it classes up the joint to no end and adds gravitas. Now we may know why Yoshino quotes it: because Aika used to (he also keeps the sticks in his hair she used to put there). She was a very cerebral girl, always thinking about the big picture, as in that quote above. As he reminisces about their date at the aquarium, he realizes she may have been talking about their own tragedy, her brutal murder. But her death has set Mahiro on a path to potentially save the world from the reason-severing Tree of Exodus – with Yoshino by his side.

That aquarium they went to on their date, is the same aquarium where Hakaze thought to hide one of talismans, a means of arming her proxy should she befall…misfortune. And the talisman is the same dolphin necklace Aika gave him, telling him not to complain when given a gift. Neither Mahiro nor we are sure whether his is pure coincidence or if Aika had some kind of foresight, but it’s obvious she was an old soul. It’s always heartrending to see them together in the flashbacks (the music really sells it), but we really enjoy how they’re informing the present.

There was also nice cat-and-mouse play this week, with a chase through the aquarium, a venue Yoshino ultimately took full advantage of for it’s abundance of highly conductive water. Tetsuma is dispatched relatively easily, but every encounter with the clan means using up talismans. The final twist this week is the slight matter of Hakaze’s self-exiled buddy Junichiro thinks she’s dead, and that Samon has her skull to prove it. We’ve seen her on the beach, but Mahiro is just listening to a wooden idol. So…what’s the deal?

Rating: 9 (Superior)

Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai! – 05

The teacher who approved the circle says it will be disbanded if Rikka doesn’t pass math exams. Rikka is terrible at math and hates studying, so she first tries praying at a shrine, then has the circle volunteer to clean a pool. Her teacher then tells her she’ll have to at least meet the class’s average score, not merely pass. Yuuta takes her under his wing and gives her a crash course in math, using nomenclature that appeals to her Chuunibyou. She ends up beating the average by two points. As a reward, Yuuta bestows her the email address “Black Raison d’être.”

Just about everyone in the circle revealed something new about their characters. Sanae is really good at math. Shinka is just class rep and cheerleader because it’s the opposite of Chuunibyou, not because those things actually interest her. Yuuta softens his self-embargo on Chuunibyou in the service of education. Kumin…well, Kumin still just likes to nap. Finally, Rikka is extremely bad at math; may have ADHD…and while we’re quite familiar with her upbeat, over-imaginative side, this week things got a little more…melancholy.

Rikka’s not the best when it comes to chores (her room’s a mess and she leaves dirty dishes around), and her sister is almost always late. Tooka and Sanae may well be the only contacts in her phone. In short, she’s lonely and isolated, and for her, Chuunibyou makes life that much less depressing. So rather than insist on minimizing its role in their interactions, Yuuta, having gotten to know Rikka more, embraces it in helping her cram. Math, like high school socializing, is a language she isn’t comfortable with. If Yuuta wants her to learn either, it must be on her terms.This seems to be steadily building up to a weird but interesting romance.

Rating: 8 (Great)

P.S. Sanae really should stop ending every other sentence with “desu”…but she probably won’t.