The girls are finally back with focusing harder on promotions, and their next big gig is participating in the opening act for Iron Frill’s concert at the Saga Arena! Ooohhh boy~! It was interesting to see how the episode’s focus had been split between Ai and Junko, but it does draw a good contrast between them. Ai is ambitiously striving to help them improve themselves, however that came to a halt when Kotaro pulled her from the line-up to focus on independent promotions on behalf of Franchouchou, while Junko has been entrusted the task to help lead the girls in their practice.
Naturally, the girls were quite perplexed by this decision, but I can understand why. One of the reasons why he may have packed her schedule for the individual promotions was to help her get away from taking charge of the team. We saw how everyone was a bit overly dependent on her, asking for her insight on almost every little thing. While Ai doesn’t appear to mind micro-managing this, the girls also need to be able to problem-solve and come up with answers on their own. There is also the possibility he is doing this because he wants Ai to learn to trust the team some more, by having faith in their abilities.
But the biggest reason why Kotor decided to pull Ai from their performance at Saga Arena is because it is obviously too risky to have Ai perform right before her former group does. Not to mention, how would Iron Frill’s fans respond? Just her history with Iron Frill is enough to make this situation complicated. (But frankly, I am still half expecting her to end up performing with them, one way or another, we’ll have to see). Not to mention, to nobody’s surprise, more and more people are pointing out her uncanny ‘resemblance’ to Iron Frill’s former legendary center. It’s inevitable to happen as they gain more traction in the spotlight, but the last thing they really need right now is people becoming suspicious about it.
And as if things weren’t already starting to get rocky, it doesn’t help that her former teammate Shiori is now headhunting Ai to join their group. Though she claims it’s because she can relate and see Ai’s true ambitions, there is also the possibility she may also be doing this in attempt to bring her back if she has any suspicions that Ai is exactly who she thinks she is. Should the truth come out, it is bound to get complicated. (Though I do wonder how Shiori would respond to Ai being a zombie now. It certainly makes me curious.)
It will be interesting to see how Ai will respond to this proposal. it wouldn’t be strange for her to still have some lingering attachment to her former group, but she also appeared offended by Shiori’s claims, such as staying place like Saga. However Shiori had also said things that have been on her mind recently, where she criticized Kotaro for limiting them to Saga exclusively.
But compared to Ai, the one who was the most offended by Shiori’s comments was Junko.
Ever since she has been assigned to help lead the team’s practice in Ai’s steed, Junko has been anxious about how methods. Unlike Ai, she was a solo artist, so she feels despite being their senior, she isn’t confident in her ability to help them improve as a group. There is certainly a difference, as Ai who has experience of leading a group and confidence in her ability to analyze on what they need to do to polish up. As result, Junko is at loss of what to do. There is also the problem where Junko happens to still be haunted by their failed concert, so there’s a lot weighing on her mind right now.
Overall this was a very entertaining episode. I have found the past two to be somewhat lacking (especially last week’s), so this made up for it! It pretty much gave us all the little things that easily crack me up, such as Kotaro’s hilarious announcements antics, Tae being Tae and them just being the clumsy zombies that they are. I was in stitches after Sakura’s body rolled off the roof, Junko placed her head beside her and she had her body climb up again and then put her head back on while having a serious conversation.