Marin really wants to do a group cosplay with Sajuna, even offering to share the expensive studio fees for the shoot. So does Wakana, for that matter, whom Sajuna learns is responsible for Marin’s cosplay makeup. When Sajuna still looked reluctant, Marin did something I’m very appreciative of: she backed off, telling Sajuna to forget about it.
Marin sensed Sajuna wasnt comfortable, and gave her an out rather than keep the pressure on. But the more Sajuna saves on studio fees, the more she can put into her outfits, so she agrees to collaborate “just this once” (it won’t be just this once).
Its not just saving money thought; Sajuna wants to work with someone as dedicated to their craft and detail-oriented as Wakana, who wants to watch every episode of Blaze!! to get a better handle on Shion and Neon. Marin happens to have all 126 episodes on DVD; Wakana just has to come by her place to collect them.
Back home, Wakana is worried about his Gojou Doll skills suffering, but his gramps assures him he’s improved, and his once-stiff strokes have softened. Clearly happy his grandson has met someone, he tells Wakana that he’ll have to observe more than just dolls so be good at making them.
The next day Wakana arrives so early that Marin’s doorbell essentially wakes her up, and she comes to the door with neither a bra nor her color contacts—which I didn’t even know she wore! Naturally, she’s embarrassed far more by the latter, as she’s already upset Wakana’s seen her without her makeup.
Marin is a teenager and takes great pride in the appearance she crafts for the outside world, but she’ll soon come to realize that neither contacts nor makeup matter to Wakana…and despite her thinking he’d never notice she’s not wearing a bra, well…he does, Marin…he does. At any rate, I love her natural dark brown eyes, and I’m sure Wakana does too!
Wakana is so nervous about being in a girl’s house for the first time he’s on the cusp of hurling in Marin’s genkan, but Marin won’t let him simply collect the DVDs and skedaddle, especially when he came bearing fancy pudding. She invites him to her very loud, anime-and-eroge-dominated bedroom to watch the DVDs together.
What results is some of the sweetest few minutes of pure bliss this side of Takagi-san. Wakana, whom Marin is on record as wuving, is not only sitting beside her and watching the anime but actually getting into it. She’s so happy she doesn’t want the moment to end. It’s so adorable and relatable, since there’s nothing like watching (or doing!) something you love with someone you love.
Marin’s Cloud Status falls from Nine to Zero when her stomach lets out a great groan, but even that is an opportunity to move the home date into the kitchen. Wakana initially says he’ll take care of dinner, as always, but kudos for Marin for pushing back and saying no, you’ve cooked enough for me, it’s my turn to feed you!
And while Marin is definitely not going to win any Shokugans, the show doesn’t mock her lack of professional culinary skills, but simply portrays the process of cooking for someone you love (or in her case, wuv) organically. She’s so nervous when he takes his first bite of “omurice” (which he assumes is just fried rice with some egg). But despite how it looks, it actually tastes great! And she knows Wakana is not one to lie about such things!
After Marin and Wakana laugh and cry through the rest of Blaze!! (or at least a good chunk of the run), we rather abruptly shift back to Wakana’s house as he has a combination voice and video call with Sajuna about her Black Lily cosplay. It’s here we learn that despite their very unfortunate start, these two make a good team.
Sajuna in particular is impressed by Wakana’s detailed schematics of the costume, especially when she learns that Marin’s Shizuku-tan was his very first project. She clearly feels it’s just not fair that he’s this good this soon. But Wakana knows he still has plenty of room for improvement, and also wants to learn more about photographing Marin.
So does Marin, for that matter, and for that Sajuna has them meet her little sister Shinju, who is only smaller in years, since she’s almost 5’11” despite being in middle school (compared to Marin, who is just over 5’4″). Shinju is as shy as she is statuesque, but despite Marin being a little too loud about it, she has nothing to fear from her and Wakana.
They, on the other hand, have everything to learn about cosplay photography, since Shinju is clearly very talented if she’s Juju’s photographer. While I’m hoping Wakana starts to pick up on Marin’s vibes, I’m still looking forward to the non-romantic part of the series that remains, involving getting better at this whole cosplay thing by collaborating with two of the best in the business.