Love Lab – 06

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While at the mall with Maki and Sayo, a boy who knew Riko approaches her. When Sayo wonders if Riko broke his heart, he blushes and runs off. She goes nuts trying to remember who he is. When a classmate tells her someone asked about her at cram school, Riko goes there and not only meets a second childhood friend, Jan, but the first guy as well, who doesn’t react well when she tells him she doesn’t remember him.

Back home she remembers him as Satoshi, whom she rejected in the third grade. The next day she goes back with Maki, who fails at trying to converse with Jan while Riko tries to smooth things over with Satoshi. Back at school, the council receives more requests for love advice, suggesting rumors they’re involved are spreading. When Riko and Maki’s guard is down, they let slip their involvement to Momo, a reporter for the school paper.

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This is an episode about complication. First, Riko, desperate to earn the lofty title of love master bestowed upon her by Maki and Suzu, is haunted by a guy whose heart she actually broke in the past, but can’t for the life of her remember. It isn’t until she’s up close and reads the same reaction she saw once years before that she starts to recall. And as it turns out, she couldn’t remember him for the same reason her mom gave, which pissed Riko off at the time: he’d gotten much manlier…as in he doesn’t look like a girl anymore (until he smiles, that is.)

It’s not just Riko’s love life getting more complicated. In the process of confronting Satoshi, Riko had to cut Maki loose with a guy, and while Maki has no earthly idea how to talk to a guy, Jan doesn’t make it easy with his aloof defensiveness (he thought Maki was making fun of him). But while she fails, she gained firsthand knowledge that some guys can be jerks. Romance aside, the complication that threatens Riko and Maki the most is the possibility their secret love advice ring will be brought out of the shadows, potentially ruining their reputations and the trust of the faculty, and thus ending their high school lives. Or…they could use the newspaper to anonymously publish their love advice…

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Rating:7 (Very Good)

Danganronpa: The Animation – 06

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The third floor is unlocked for the remaining students. When investigating the “ghost” of Fujisaki that Asahina saw in the baths, they discover a laptop with an AI that looks and talks like Fujisaki. That night, the laptop turns up missing, and Togami suggests there might be a traitor among them. The next morning Celes and Yamada are apparently attacked by a robot “Justice Hammers”, and both Yamada and Ishimaru are killed and their bodies moved. When they finally find the, Yamada is still alive, and names Hagakura Yasuhiro as the culprit before dying.

There’s a lot in this show we find patently silly and ridiculous. The idea that a huge academy in the middle of a city would simply be left alone and never investigated by outside forces. The extremely over-the-top, specific character design. The fact that the villain is a demented teddy bear with seemingly unlimited resources with which to torture and execute students. Fujisaki’s interactive AI. One place that has remained mostly grounded in conventional logic have been the motives behind the murders themselves, of which two have been solved, and of which neither was premeditated even if their actions after the fact were criminal. Kuwata killed Maizono because if she was trying to kill him. Ohwada killed Fujisaki in a sudden fit of passion.

The students have murdered people sure, but no one’s taken any pleasure out of it like say, Genocider Syo(Sho?) with her victims on the outside. Monokuma is forcing them to kill, but he’s not exactly breeding cold-blooded murderers. This week two more students are slain and their bodies moved, and by process of elimination, the only one not present for their discovery (and re-discovery) was Afro-dude, Yasuhiro, whom Yamada even names – so of course Yasuhiro probably isn’t the murderer. More interesting are all the clues that suggest some if not all the students actually knew each other before coming to Hope’s Peak, suggesting Monokuma had their memories altered. We wouldn’t put anything past him…not even the kitchen sink.


Rating: 6 (Good)

Stella Women’s Academy, High School Division Class C3 – 06

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In order to afford the upcoming 24-hour airsoft tournament, the C3 Club must have a profitable school fair. After striking out with goldfish and haunted houses they set up a “cosplay firing range cafe” using what they have on hand. Business is slow due to harsh competition from adjacent clubs until Mutsu implements the “Get Wet Strategy,” in which the C3 members face off against each other in swimsuits with paper targets and water pistol quick-draw. A momentary distraction allows Yura to beat Sonora. By the end of the fair, they’ve made enough to fund the tournament.

It’s clear even before this episode that Yura has long since been accepted by the rest of the C3 Club as one of their own, and her exploits with said club are both fun and formative. And yet she still can’t shake flashbacks to a time when she didn’t fit in anywhere, and her peers took advantage of her meekness to walk all over her. It’s that past, combined with her defeat at the hands of Haruna Rin, that continue to haunt her and fuel the overachieving that could become reckless if unchecked.

She seems to use her “powers” to change her environment (as she sees it anyway) to her advantage, imagining a western duel in defeating Sonora in quickdraw. What followed was a quite awkward interaction to a duel between friends. Yura, who is almost embarrassed to have won, is given the cold shoulder by Sonora either because she was concerned with the girl who ran into Rento, or because she’s sore about losing to a newbie, or a little of both. The fair was fun enough for all, but it didn’t resolve any of Yura’s insecurities, which will surely come to the fore at the 24-hour tournament.


Rating: 6 (Good)