Episode 3

It’s happening! We are finally getting to know about the girls! I’m actually surprised that we didn’t start right out with Haru as our main girl, but instead we’re jumping straight into Kyouka. Previously, she had a slip-up on stage which left her in a state where she doesn’t feel comfortable being the center again, but on top of this she also feels bad towards an incredibly dedicated fan, Tokka.

The whole episode really dances on this moment, that I don’t feel like there is a whole lot to talk about. It’s a pretty standard moment, but I really like that they didn’t make Kyouka a super shy character. (Don’t get me wrong though, I am a HUGE fan of these shy idol characters). She has her own quirks namely with bad jokes and pranks, but also fairly outgoing when it comes to interacting with the fans. She has as much drive as the other two, but this one slip up just put a significant roadblock in the way. She doesn’t want to let the rest of the group and the fans down if she is unable to perform, but at the same time that moment is going to continue to eat away at her. So naturally, it’s up to the manager to get involved and of course he tells her to be the center and sing the song that she was unable to that day. And of course, she’s mad and I don’t blame her.

But how did the manager find this out? Well, Yukine and Haru can’t keep a secret on anything, but that’s okay because even if some snide comments are said between the two groups, I really do like that they try to keep the other’s best interest at heart. And that was really present with the way Yukine and Kyouka interacted in this episode. Yukine went straight for the insults, fully expecting Kyouka to bite back, but was instead met with an agreement to the rude comment. I think it was a really neat way for the series to portray these girls as rivals and less like enemies because they show genuine concern. But I did find it funny when Momiji basically spells it out to the whole group that Yukine wants to help Haru make Kyouka feel better. We love an honest dummy :^).

Which brings me back to one thing that I really like is that the characters get to have distinct personalities and still work well with each other. I feel like we often have an episode or two where characters are trying to figure out how they mesh with a group, but with TINGS they are still trying to figure it out, but they are doing so as a team and not as enemies trying to one up each other. It’s really refreshing to see and watch them play out! I don’t feel like we will run into any unnecessary drama between the characters which is a major bonus in my book! Well… at least not due to characters hating each other. There may be unnecessary drama because of other things, but I can keep dreaming!

Episode 4

 This episode almost made me cry twice!! One time out of sadness and the other out of pure joy. Kyouka !! You did it, I’m so proud of you!!

When I was thinking about what to write, I honestly thought about starting out by calling this episode nothing special, but then I realized how ironic that would be considering it was all about Kyouka believing that she wasn’t anything special. But! I mean the concept isn’t new! This general idea is present in many other anime, and some groups are even formed based on all the members being painfully average. But Those always really get to me! I think all of us at some point in our lives get this feeling. We want to be someone, but at the end of the day so many of us feel just so ordinary and the metaphorical spotlight will never be around us. It’s so easy to see what’s good about everyone else that we get trapped in just believing that it would be better if we just… don’t pursue what we want.

They did a really good job of Kyouka’s evolution in this episode. I really liked that they showed her as just your average classmate who was good at school and just living that normal school life. She was never an idol fan, but thanks to a single performance she was able to attend, her world was immediately opened. And I absolutely loved that this performance was a call back to the first episode. It’s nice to see just how important that concert was to these girls!! Honestly, I wish I had the conviction to decide after a single performance that I would pursue being an idol. Characters like Kyouka give me a lot of hope, because I feel very similar to them. So, good for her for being scouted! But even though she was scouted, she still felt like she didn’t quite live up to the expectation. Once again she saw those around her as being more special and she started to suppress her desires and placed herself in a supporting role.

I haven’t had much to say about the manager, but I’m glad he was around this time around to talk some sense with Kyouka. I like that he was able to say that idols have the luxury of being selfish. They can go after what they want, and honestly that’s just advice I would give to anyone. I kind of wish we had more interaction between Yukine and Kyouka, but I’m happy things played out the way that they did.

When she got on stage and started her song, I was cheering right alongside the audience! It was incredible to see how excited Tokka was to see her favorite idol finally sing her song. It was just such a heartwarming end to the episode! I couldn’t help but want to cry tears of joy ; v;

And with that, it looks like we’ve finished Kyouka’s mini arc. I hope she still has a decent role as the series goes on, but I wonder what we’re going to get next… Is it going to be a full group event happening? Perhaps a merger with Yukine and Momiji? Or are we going to give Rio or Haru their arc? I’m excited for either, but I’m going to be holding them up to high expectations!


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