Okay this has to be my new favourite episode of the series. (Though at this rate, every new episode from this point on might become my new favourite hahahaha) It was so freaking good and it made me cry! This episode pretty much summed up why I love this series so much! And oh gosh, when they started playing the piece, I got the chills! It was so, so, so SO BEAUTIFUL! I said it last week (and maybe the week before that too) and I’ll say it again, I AM SO GLAD THEY ARE LETTING US HEAR THE KOTO DURING PRACTICE TIME!!!! Its sound is so mesmerizing!
What I love about this arc is how further establishes what makes this club so special. It isn’t just a place of tight knitted friends who are so dedicated to the koto, but a place where they unwittingly help heal each other’s deepest wounds. Akira was the latest character who absolute needed to be in this kind of environment. The group’s commitment to practice and how they can recognized the meaning of her words and efforts gave her an affirmation that her time spent mastering Mizu no Hentai was not all in vain. It after they wanted her performance that they were able to understand what it means to play every single note with care. There was also a really important moment that hit close to home for Akira when she realized she had inadvertently put Sane in a difficult position where he was struggling to keep up with Chika and Satowa’s parts. Had Sane not received the kind of support the two of them had provided, he may have very well succumbed to the same darkness which she had been drowning in all this time. And god damn it— Sane’s smile of both joy and relief was the reason why I started crying in the first place! LOOK HOW PRECIOUS IT IS! HOW COULD YOU NOT BE MOVED?! MY HEART! As result, her experience has finally given her a purpose, as it enabled her to stand where she is now as the club’s instructor. It makes me happy that when she realized that, she changed her mind about quitting.
It is also worth to note, this is a prime example of Akira not being on the same page as her grandmother. The old hag had thought Akira’s way of teaching would crush their spirits and that she wouldn’t care about them. Oh how wrong she was. Even before Akira formed the attachment towards them today, she was a stern, yet earnest instructor. What she said was always relevant with purpose. But it also spells for trouble, as the old hag had finally realized this and is most certainly up to no good.
This week we were also able to see more about the conditions Takinami had put in place when he received the offer to have a dedicated koto instructor, at no charge. He showed us more of how much he actually thinks and cares about the club, as he straight up told her, if he were to find her to be useless to them, he will ask her to quit right away. It was incredibly important to him to make sure that she was compatible with the club, and (despite not appearing as often as Akira had expected him to) is absolutely serious and truly believes they can compete in the Nationals. But Takinami had not only demonstrated his faith in the group, but also Akira. It made him really happy when she earnestly asked him to give her another chance.
Also can we just take a moment to appreciate Takinami’s smile?! IT’S SO BEAUTIFUL!!!!! PLEASE SMILE MORE!!!!!
And lastly, thanks to Takinami’s suggestion, Satowa and Akira put on a demonstration to show what an ensemble would look like. It was the first time he and the others watched Satowa perform with someone who can match her calibre. Their performance revealed Takinami’s intention behind the ensemble’s arrangement is about interchanging hearts. I also found quite endearing how the boys were able to grasp that to that degree, which explains why it made everyone cry.
Goodness, next Saturday can’t come sooner! I’m a bit sad we’re already halfway through the season, so I reallllllllyyy hope they can secure us another one!