Wow. What a good episode to follow up the first. There were so many good things that happened in this episode that I’m not even sure where to begin.
The episode starts out with Kazusa doing a little bit of research into what she had seen in the previous episode, but shortly afterwards she finds herself coming to rescue Sugawara from a stranger that has taken a liking to her. After Kazusa’s hilarious attempt at acting succeeds we quickly get to move into learning more about Sugawara’s history and more of what drives her to act the way that she does. In the first episode, I didn’t really see Sugawara as a super relatable character because she seemed to distant and almost unattainable compared to the other girls. However, the scene where the two girls are alone in the park really gave me insight into her as a character and a deeper understanding into why she told us that she was going to die. Now, when she first said it in the first episode, I was fully ready to accept that she had some life threatening illness in which she must live out her youthful school days to the fullest before her incurable illness takes over. It’s something that appears quite often in anime, so it wouldn’t have been a surprise to me if it showed up in this one as well. But as the scene continues, we come to understand that she is referring to her current self, which is something that really hit home for me: coming to terms with growing up and accepting all the change that comes with it. Knowing that the person she is in that moment will someday disappear? Oh man, it really just made me connect more with her and I’m interested to see how she will continue acting on it.
Hitoha and Rika also get their moments to shine in this episode, though in very different ways. Hitoha receives feedback from her publisher talking about the difference between writing erotica vs just straight up porn. He doesn’t end up giving us a whole lot of information as to what that means, but I have a feeling that we’re going to see that explored in a future episode. But! It’s shortly after that we’re introduced to a new character (briefly, and we don’t know his name, but new character!). The interaction between the two was short, but by all means if he’s here to stay, what a good first interaction. Rika on the other hand continues to deny the idea of sex at every turn, to the point where a rather tasteless joke has her escape gym class and crying. But of course Amagiri makes his triumphant return to brighten up the whole situation. He’s unapologetic in how he feels about her and because of that she wants nothing more to do with him. I’m excited to see how their relationship plays out and see how they begin to connect with each other.
Lastly, let’s go back to talking about Kazusa. After what she had walked into in the previous episode things are very uncomfortable between her and Izumi and you can pretty much feel that discomfort in every scene that the two are in. Izumi attempts to remedy the whole thing by trying to get her to forget about it, but even though Kazusa wishes it were that easy it certainly isn’t. The interactions between the two slow down between while we look more closely at the other characters, but it quickly picks back up when Izumi gets a confession. I personally, loved the way this whole scene played out. It bounced back and forth from incredibly serious to rather humorous. Sugawara filming not so discretely from behind followed by “oh I forgot to run away” was great, a very good moment. We end the scene with a some sort of resolution to the overarching issue that the literature club was trying to solve: a new and improved way of saying “sex”. Kazusa’s own embarrassment of the word has her causes her to come up with “esuibatsu” as she’s yelling at Izumi. (Which, by the way, I thought the girls trying to come up with new words was hilarious. From just switching up some vowels followed by the formidable pitfall of sex, it was just great.)
This episode leaves us with two different cliffhangers to get us to come back to the next episode. First, we have the future of the Literature Club. Will they be able to keep it around? And lastly, with help from Sugawara, Kazusa’s realization of her feelings for Izumi. Gah! The raw emotion in that scene! I could feel my heart drop! Can it be next week already?
Araburu Kisetsu no Otome-domo yo is starting the season out strong, it’s already a strong contender for one of the top series this season (but I hope I don’t jinx it!!) This episode did a fantastic job balancing drama and comedy and it all seemed to play out so naturally. The characters are incredibly real in their responses. I love that I can find something to connect to in the characters. Of course, animation exaggerates a bit, but that’s okay because we get to all the really, really good faces that Kazusa makes and it really lets the moments hit home.