Well god damn, if it isn’t another crazy episode. I’d be tempted to describe this show as akin to watching a train wreck in slow motion, but it’s really more like a three-train pileup, combined with a bridge collapse and a gas explosion for good measure. And everyone just keeps on fuelling the fire like they’ll die if the air they’re breathing is anything less than 70% chaos.
I came in half-expecting a gentle comic relief panty-stealing episode (speaking of which, lol at Natsuo’s indignation at Rui suspecting him of being a panty thief. I wonder what might give her that idea? It’s not like she’s ever caught him attemping to molest her sleeping sister or anything) but I should have known better, because apparently that was just a warmup for the pandemonium that ensued. Where to even begin? I’m still not sure what to make of it. Natsuo’s in way over his head, Hina’s on the verge of a mental breakdown, like, more than usual, and Rui’s a ticking time bomb. Oh, and Ayano from the café is a teen mom, apparently (or wait, how old is she anyway?). Why not? Yet, with all this drama, Marie still manages to steal the show with his magnificent bare-assed drumming and no-nonsense relationship advice. How does he do it? He should have his own talk show.
And on top of all of that, we got an American guy too! I’m not sure what I think of Al quite yet. As it stands, I find him a little irritating and his behaviour kind of baffling (indoor biking? Is that supposed to be a gaijin thing or is he just a free spirit?), but I’ll reserve judgment for now. I hope he gets a fucked-up subplot of his own, it’d be a shame if he went entirely to waste. I thought it would be nice if he could be a token love interest for Rui so that her arc would be a little less pathetic, but she seems to have her heart set on being humiliated by her stepbrother instead.
Oh, Natsuo, Natsuo, Natsuo. What a mess you’ve gotten yourself into. I don’t have an awful lot of sympathy for him this episode. Why does he keep digging holes all around him? He’s essentially lying to everyone by omission, even when he gets the opportunity to reveal the full extent of his feelings to Hina, and it’s incredibly frustrating. He’s usually all about the word vomit but somehow he draws the line at discussing his confusion over his feelings for Rui. Which is understandable, but he acts like his love for Hina is undeniable and eternal, yet he somehow can’t stop himself from making out with Rui on the side? One stepsister per person, please.
I felt for Hina this episode more than I have in a while, honestly. She’s not a bad person and she’s clearly trying to make less self-destructive choices but her natural hot mess tendencies can only be suppressed for so long. I bet they’re going to drag out this relationship drama until Natsuo gets to a socially acceptable age, at which point all moral questions are null and void and they may bone with impunity. It’s fine. I mean it’s not fine. But I’ve accepted it. I still really don’t get why they supposedly “love” each other, though. At the very least, congratulations to Hina for finally getting her own damn place. Maybe she’s actually moving out because Natsuo caught her masturbating. As good a reason as any.
Also I know this scene was supposed to be emotional but all I could think was “look out, Hina’s got a new target”.