This week we continue to see how everyone is coping or coming to terms with the sudden disbandment of their team. It’s refreshing to see that everyone is it differently. Some people are actively trying to improve themselves for when the team does come back together, while others are still struggling to come to terms with their guilt over the matter. But most importantly, we finally got the Yasuhara content we deserved, I’m so glad that we got to see his perspective at the beginning of the episode – it was a great start!
Sometimes it takes losing something to make realize just how important that thing was to you. I’ve really appreciated seeing that sentiment shown with Yasu, Chucky, and Nabe. I always feel a little bit weird when I have to place Yasu because he started out like Chucky and Nabe, but became attached to Basketball a lot quicker than the other two, in fact there was a point where I thought the other two would quit and he’d be the only one to remain. But now, after their conversation, I’m glad to see they all stuck with it. I enjoyed seeing everyone training so that they’ll be able to succeed the next time they try – their goals are set and they’re ready to pursue them. Additionally, I liked that this trio got to talk and show their budding passions for the sport, especially that they would take this newly found free time to practice their shots rather than go to the arcade (wow! growth!).
I wish we got a little bit more of the trio’s interaction beyond the beginning of the episode, but I’m satisfied by what we got from it. They haven’t quite found their light at the end of the tunnel, but boy they’re making their own. It just makes me smile knowing that they’re excited about the sport and want to keep pursuing it. Some of the other team members may still be looking for the light, but I really like Sora’s perspective in all of this. There really hasn’t been a significant moment where Sora has attempted to leave the sport of Basketball – if anything we can always count on him to bring his passion no matter what the circumstances- and even now with the threat of the team becoming obsolete he’s still pushing forward. His conversation with Madoka hit quite a bit when he says that those who are suspended are getting hit by this the most. It seems like he’s pretty in tune to the fact that some, if not all of them are feeling some form of grief or regret – something that they’ll have to overcome because it could potentially turn them away from the sport. But Madoka comments that Sora should be the one that is suffering the most due to the loss of the mother, and that’s moment where it shines that Sora just really loves to play Basketball and wants others to share in that joy. Yes, what happened is an absolute tragedy, but he’s going to keep moving forward!
I think the highlight of the episode for me was definitely the focus on Momoharu, primarily because it was a side of the story that I’ve been wanting to see since he was suspended. We still don’t get to see a lot of his internal monologues, but his actions and expressions really show the conflicts that he’s fighting with. He feels responsible for everything that has happened and quite frankly that’s just weighing him down as the days go on. Momoharu is very close to losing his enjoyment of Basketball once again and he’s looking for a way to be forgiven, or to just move forward. Unfortunately, that’s not something that would easily come no matter how much others would want it. It’s something that he probably needs to earn back moving forward. I liked his conversation with Mr. Satsuki, but primarily I liked the input by his wife who is able to express the change that she saw in her husband and essentially tell Momoharu to figure out exactly what he’s asking for. Paired with Chiaki’s intervention with him, Momoharu has much to consider. And that’s not even the end since he has a run in with Mokichi as the kid is throwing up all over the street. But Mokichi provides good wisdom, nonetheless. He’s able to provide that last little bit to help Momoharu solidify his decision for how to move forward.
Speaking of Mokichi I find it funny how one moment he can find the words to say to help a struggling teammate, but then the next is stuck with two other teammates at his house without permission. It’s funny how he can be the one with wisdom, but also the one who tends to get the short end of the stick. In all fairness though, Chiaki and Sora really didn’t have any business being at his house and quite frankly didn’t have very good guest manners. However, them showing up at his house turned the rather melodramatic moments with Momoharu and turned them into something more light-hearted and they all were able to solidify what they wanted their next goals to be – that they’re going to keep pushing forward and aim higher.
In terms of aiming higher, Kite is truly aiming higher with his challenges towards college level players to become the best player himself. Honestly, when the college kids were talking about a kid going around and challenging people, I thought they were talking about “Orange”, who Kite lost to in a one v one match in the previous episode. It was interesting to see that this was Kite’s next steps after defeat… I can see how he would have come to this conclusion, but it was not something I would have expected from him. Either way, I hope he’s finding something worthwhile in these matches! And I hope he can make his little sister proud by how much he’s able to improve! On another note – I really liked Kite’s line of “I WILL climb to the top, no matter how close to the bottom I am!” He’s determined, confident, and unwavering and I just really appreciate that aspect of him.
And so we come to the end of another episode where we’re starting to see some new beginnings and new haircuts (oh man, it’s going to be so weird looking at Momoharu without his pompadour) and boy am I excited to see what this new arc will bring!!
Notice: There will be no new episode next week. Episode 37 will air on July 1st, 2020.
I look forward to seeing you all then!