Tension is really running high and RAS is close to falling apart after that huge argument. Rokka is scared that Masking is going to quit the band, Layer doesn’t know how to act in this particular situation, Pareo disappeared, and Chu2 is at her lowest point. It’s slowly breaking them apart and if they don’t act on fixing this, the band is pretty much over with.
Thankfully Masking didn’t want to quit, she just wanted some fresh air in that moment. Really interesting that Masking has to keep her true self on the down low at her school, pretty funny how different they both are. I also continue to really appreciate their friendship. Kasumi bumped into Rokka earlier and they sat down to talk, and Kasumi gives simple but good advice: Just ask the other band members how they feel and talk about it. It’s as straightforward as that, really, but it gave Rokka enough courage to seek out Masking. I realize that I haven’t talked about Kasumi much, but this little small moment makes me appreciate her character. I’m usually never into the genki loud main character in music shows, they usually end up at the bottom of my lists. But I’ve always liked Kasumi, even though she’s pretty much the same character archetype. And yet, I feel like she’s a little more than that. Yes, she’s loud, silly, a little dumb, super happy and really ambitious who can sometimes be a little over her head. But it’s in moments like these where Kasumi shows a maturity to her, where she’s more calm and collected and empathetic. She really cares about her friends, and does her best to help them in her own Kasumi way. She’s not totally balls to the wall energetic all the time, which I appreciate a lot because then it gets grating to me. But Kasumi does good sometimes and I like that.
But our kirakira-dokidoki girl wasn’t the only one to give advice to a fellow RAS member. The Layer and Tae interactions have been very lacking in this season so it was nice to see them talk together again. And Layer continues to get nice character development. Vocalists are like stars, Tae describes, and they’re the ones to guide their bandmates to a path. Like I’ve said before, I always felt like Layer has always been a little passive when it came to the band. She’s slowly been coming out of her shell but she was lost as to what to do in this current situation. She thinks about Tae’s words and decides to act on it, and is finally taking a more active role. I’m really glad to see that! It also means taking off some of the burden from Chu2’s shoulders.
Speaking of, we finally saw quite a vulnerable Chu2. We see as she’s practically starved herself because she’s always relied on Pareo to get her jerky and other food. She, and the rest of the girls, weren’t into their performance with their garbled emotions and Pareo still not being there. And it just hurt me to see Pareo reading the comments of the “successful concert” comments from the fans even though she wasn’t there. Ugh, poor Pareo. But with Chu2, she gets a voicemail from her mother wishing her a happy birthday, how her parents sent her a present, etc. Chu2, or rather Chiyu has a bit of a complex. While she learned to play literally any instrument her parents gave her and did pretty decently at competitions, it was never good enough. And yet, we always saw her mother happily celebrate and support her. Unfortunately, that doesn’t matter when she herself never felt good enough. Chiyu is very smart, and extremely hardworking, but she doesn’t have confidence enough to play her own music. And so with her talents in multiple fields and with her connections, she decided to create band of her own in order to get herself out there. Unfortunately, that passion of hers got the better of her and it pushed her bandmates away. I don’t know if it’s enough to make me change my mind totally with Chiyu, but at least we got something and I can understand it. Also, she’s thirteen years old and she’s completely living by herself since her parents are overseas. She’s still such a young child and she doesn’t have anyone there with her. Well, except for Pareo, which makes her words from last episode even more frustrating. But Chu2 is mostly alone in all this, and I think she’s used to it and I think it’s a reason why she distances herself from her bandmates. Masking said something that really stood out to me and was something I always believed, which was: “Start paying more attention to your bandmates!” Which is something I kept saying to myself because that’s exactly it – Chu2 doesn’t pay enough attention to them. She’s always kept herself apart from everyone and did her own thing, she never bothered creating a personal bond with any of them, not even with Pareo because she doesn’t even know exactly where she lives! And it’s all coming back to bite her.
I’m glad that Layer was able to talk some sense into her at the end and forcefully grab her to make things right again. This is her chance to realize what’s most important for her and she can start to improve not only on herself, but also RAS. Right now, RAS is not on the same page so they all need to come together and talk things out. Hopefully it goes well, because next episode’s title is unsettling and worrisome.
Yay, Pareo is still here. I mean I knew that they couldn’t break up or Pareo would forever quit the band, but it was still rough to watch. We get to learn why being part of RAS, and why Chu2, is so important for Pareo and the whole band finally came together. And Chu2 continuing to grow and appreciate her band members even more.
It says a lot that Masking and Rokka don’t even know Pareo’s actual real name, since they kept going around asking for a “Pareo”. They really aren’t as close as they think they are, but at least they address this themselves later in the episode. Before, RAS was just a band. Just some girls that would come together to play their music and do stuff, but that was pretty much it. Now, they can start changing things for the better.
Seeing a different side to Pareo was nice to see.When she’s not being the super bubbly and adorable Pareo in RAS, she’s the studious, popular, and athletic class representative honors student, Reona Nyubara. While Reona seems to have it all at school, she doesn’t exactly like all the attention she gets. It’s great that everyone genuinely likes her, but she’s sort of made to fit this mold and continues to do so. For her, it’s really suffocating and not exactly someone she wants to be. What’s worse, she doesn’t seem to view herself in a positive light either as she doesn’t think she’s cute in the slightest. One thing she does love is Pastel Palettes as she has all of their merch and posters literally all over her room, and I wish the show kind of focused on that a little bit more. But from what we can see, Reona probably is in love with idols and Pasupare and what they stand for. They’re cute, they’re bubbly, they’re not afraid to stand out, and they get to break the mold. Reona’s very colorful room shows a different image than the one she displays at school. Pareo gets to go all out and be who she truly wants to be, while Reona is reserved and quiet. It’s why when Chu2 scouts her for her band, and lets her put on any of the many cute outfits in her house, it gave Reona drive. Someone was finally able to pay attention to her talent and ask her “What do you really want to do?” This was her chance to be who she truly wanted to be and be accepted, and so Reona became the Pareo that we know. It’s no wonder that Pareo holds so much love and loyalty towards Chu2 as she was the reason that Pareo found so much happiness in her life.
But that horrible comment from last episode was like a knife to her heart. As long as she could be with Chu2, she’d be okay. Y’know, the person that gave her life a bit more meaning to it. Only for her to say that she’s useless, and it all came crashing down. That is so painful.
Layer and Chu2 manage to find the girls and Chu2 apologizes right then and there, and Pareo accepts it. I loved this episode but one thing I will say is that I felt like Pareo accepted the apology a little too quickly? I feel like it would have been better and emotional if Pareo had really voiced to her how hurt she was by that comment and what RAS really means to her. She sorta barely does in the train, but ehhhh. The whole apology scene really was only a few seconds so I’m a little upset that they couldn’t add more to it.
However, I like that Chu2 and the rest of the band are really taking this moment to heart and learning from it. Chu2 admits that she didn’t even care if her bandmates hated her, as long as she was able to form the ultimate band. She was too selfish and tunnel-focused in achieving her goal that she didn’t care about anything else. However, when she saw that the girls would rather hang out with Popipa and make the distance between them grow even more, it scared her. Considering she’s pretty much alone all the time, it makes sense that Chu2 would have that fear. I’m also glad that she was able to tell them how much she respects them because it’s not like she ever expressed this since she always has a sharp tongue. Layer brings up a good point in that they only ever focused on practicing, but they never really sat down to bond and get to know each other better. It actually kinds of remind me Roselia when they were very new, where they only focused on practicing all the time. Yukina and Sayo weren’t very interested in becoming super close with everyone else and only thought of it as a waste of time, but Lisa, Ako, and Rinko enjoyed heading to restaurants together with the girls and of course Roselia changed a lot throughout the series. Thankfully RAS will be able to make that big change too.
Which starts with taking a bath together, even though Chu2 hates it so much, and singing Chu2 their own original birthday song that they made for her. And dammit it was really sweet. This was a huge big step for them all, but mainly for Chu2 to really see how much the other girls really appreciate her. Awww~
RAS goes over to Popipa’s place to apologize for worrying them and basically tell them all is fine, so hurray. Now the big moment has arrived, and that is the end of the Bandori rankings. Roselia comes in first, and RAS and Popipa both tie for second place! Yeah, we can’t have the finale without Popipa which I guess is fine. They did work their asses off to hopefully place themselves higher and I do think they kind of deserve it. So now it looks like all three of these bands are going to face off at the Budoukan, so that should be great!
These two episodes were really strong and I loved them a lot. This whole season of Bang Dream has been pretty fantastic, so again I’m sad that we’ll have to wait three goddamn weeks to see the finale! Again, this schedule really sucks. The wait is going to be painful again but there’s nothing we can do about it unfortunately. It should be a good finale anyway. One thing I want to know is…
WHERE CAN I BUY THESE?