While Haruto is telling Rin she can’t dissuade him from meeting with Yuzuki to learn how she really feels, the episode flashes back to when Yuzuki first moved in with him. He was starting high school with all his middle school friends, including his crush Kanzaki Nanami, andd rumors about him and Yuzuki spread fast. At first Haruto sees Yuzuki as selfish, but her actions, which bring Haruto and Nanami closer together, prove she’s always thinking of others, even at the cost of her own.
Haruto’s relationship with Eba Yuzuki, the girl he’s uprooted his life just for the slightest chance of another shot at, had a rough, modest start. Her dad knew his dad, so suddenly she was in his house, on his bike, and at his school. Had she never entered his life, he’d have probably been fine, as there no evidence his life was any the worse for wear before she entered it. However, she did enter it, at the best possible time to create unwanted complication for Haruto. This episode efficiently laid out the conditions under which Haruto eventually fell for Yuzuki; and when he learned of her tendency to go out of her own way for others, putting their needs before hers.
Haruto may not be aware of it, but the minute Yuzuki meets Nanami and knew Haruto liked her, she began to sublimate herself for their sake. Ironically, that humility only ingratiated her more to Haruto, solidifying the triangle she created by showing up in the first place. Back in the present, Haruto thinks her behavior is an attempt to retreat from the battlefield and break that triangle, something Haruto isn’t cool with. In any case, he’s here to settle the matter once and for all (assuming it can be settled). Even if Yuzuki won’t answer texts, and even if she has a boyfriend as Rin claims, if Haruto is right, there’s still hope for them.
Rating: 8 (Great)
- We realize Haruto is being both self-righteous and a little pretentious with his presumption Yuzuki really loves him but is sacrificing her feelings so she isn’t in the way of his other prospects, i.e. Nanami.
- Along those lines, no one can dictate how someone else decides to back out of something as Yuzuki has, but Haruto seems to think she still owes her further explanation, so it’s a battle of wills.
- Clever camera angles and placement of limbs hid nudity (instead of blur or bloom censoring), suggesting this wasn’t meant to show anything, which is fine, as nudity’s not that important to the story. Suffice it to say, none of the girls in Haruto’s life are what you would call homely.
- It is pretty funny how Haruto believes for an extended period of time that Yuzuki is going commando, when it turns out that wasn’t the case. An early sign they’ll experience difficulty communicating clearly in the future.
- Fewer cats this week, which is good, because the animation of the one incidental kitten in Free! kicked the ass of all the cats we’ve seen in this or Railgun thus far.
- We felt she was perfect for Ranka Lee, and we maintain our love for Nakajima Megami in her role as Yuzuki, bringing a similar vulnerable ebulliance subtly tinged with repressed pathos.
- Every proper bathhouse or hotspring had sure as heck better offer fruit milk!
- We love talking into fans. Who wouldn’t want to sound like an advanced A.I.?!