It’s time to face reality at last – and Riki and Rin were met with a pretty grim one. It’s a stark contrast to the dream world and its many slice of life scenes, which is what the initial season of the show associated itself with. Even though we knew what would happen, the bus crash itself was extremely jarring. All that screaming… and all that blood! And amidst all that confusion, it takes a really good person to still look out for you and shield you from harm – that’s exactly what Masato and Kengo did, on top of looking out for them in the artificial world. Kyousuke wasn’t supposed to be on the field trip at all, but I guess it was his presence that made all the difference – not only did he plug up the gas leak, his mysterious Key magic allowed Riki and Rin to gain the mental strength they needed to survive. While I want the Little Busters (especially Mio) to survive as much as Riki does, I really must question his decision to disregard Kyousuke’s advice and return to the bus – the whole point of growing stronger was that, in addition to surviving, Riki would be able to protect Rin and not fall into grief. If Riki goes back and the bus explodes right there, everything the Little Busters did would have been for nothing. Well, maybe he might have been able to help them if he didn’t run back and promptly fall asleep 😀 He’s seriously gotta sort out his narcolepsy.
In all honesty, I was hoping for a bit more reality as opposed to abstract scenes, but by the end I really liked Rin’s character development. Most of the time we see things from Riki’s point of view, so it was a good change of pace to see how Rin’s taking things – especially the fact that, despite growing stronger, she has to cope with the loss of her friends. I still refuse to believe they’re dead, by the way. You’ve gotta save them Riki! While it was nice to see all the auxiliary girls after very much feeling their absence, the scene with Komari was most poignant of all. That moment when Komari disappeared, and her hair ornament hit the floor… damn you, J.C. Staff! Damn you! Stupid dust specks in my eyes…
It’s the finale next week, and I’m hoping it’s gonna be a great one. I’ve gone through a lot of this season with confusion being my primary emotion amidst the feels – but in the end, I don’t think I regret being an anime-only viewer. You end up having prior standards to compare things against if you’re familiar with the source material, and I’ve heard that dialectic amongst the VN readers over this franchise in particular is rather fierce. I have a feeling that a lot of these posts would have just degenerated into comparison had I been familiar with the VN. While it’s understandably inevitable (and I do it myself), perhaps the focus should stay on what the episode was, rather than what it should have or could have been. But yeah, maybe I’ll pick up the VN once this finishes airing!