Natsuyuki Rendezvous – 07

Hazuki remains trapped while Atsushi continues seducing Rokka, not caring who she thinks she’s spending time with. They go to the sea, spend the night at a hotel, and make love. When Rokka wakes up, Hazuki isn’t there, but Atsushi has left a note with the same unique character he gave her when they exchanged numbers on their first date. Atsushi spends the day making bouquets for Rokka. When Rokka sees them, she’s overcome by emotion, seemingly unsure of which man Hazuki is.

This series has an uncanny ability to consistently keep us in the dark about what’s going to happen next, but it manages this unpredictability with such grace and subtlety, we can hardly complain, and in fact, welcome the surprise. We really thought Atsushi would finally give Hazuki’s body back this time, but he wants a little more time. He’s perpetually aware that his is a “vain struggle” and that resisting the truth of his situation is futile, but he just can’t let go yet. Rokka has opened her heart – and body – for Hazuki, not him. Even in Hazuki’s body, there’s nothing he can do. Well, almost nothing.

Like last week, there was a frustration simmering in the background the whole time Atsushi interacted with Rokka, and once again, Hazuki misses out on a milestone of his currently hijacked relationship. Let this be a lesson to everyone out there: never get drunk around the ghost of the husband of the girl you love. We feel really bad for Hazuki this week – though being underwater and being able to breathe and talk is pretty sweet. We also feel bad for Rokka; she’s being royally messed with by Atsushi. This hasbeen an interesting situation,but we’re hoping the mermaid’s right and this won’t last forever. There are just four episodes left: we hope Hazuki gets his body back soon. Even if no one’s sure who the main character is anymore, we’re still rooting for him.

Rating: 8 (Great)