What happens when you focus the entire episode on Gure, the least interesting of the group? Well, mostly a lot of eye-rolling.
When this anime is good, it is very good. It is the supreme relaxer. Calmness in anime form. It is exactly what you need after a stressful day at work. When this anime misses its mark, as it did at episode 5, it really misses the mark. And episode 8 is another example of Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori missing the mark.
I’m going to level a lot of the blame at Gure for this. His happy go lucky and pushy persona irks me at the best of times but when off-set with the other personalities at the cafe he usually doesn’t overstay his welcome. This episode didn’t off-set him. The other guys between them had about two minutes screen time. No, this was a Gure on a side-quest episode and it was pretty painful.
Of course, we have to point the other finger at the nature of his quest. Help the down-trodden student. Everything is going wrong in his life at home and school and he’s miserable, etc, etc. But hey, serve him coffee, give him a pep-talk, shove your own childhood trauma and story of salvation onto him, and by the end of the episode we’ll be all smiles. It is trite. It really is. Made worse by superimposing the image of Gure’s master over him as he waves farewell to You, as if the situations are in anyway comparable. Guy he’s known five minutes vs the master who gave him a trade and clearly built up a fairly extensive relationship with.
So yeah, I didn’t really get into this episode and quite frankly is has been the low point for the season so far.
- Episode 7: Back to Relaxation
- Episode 6: The Start of Sui’s Rokyhoudou
- Episodes 4 + 5: Seriously, What?
- Episode 3: Looks Are Clearly Deceptive
- Episode 2: Calming With Just a Hint of Drama
- Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori First Impressions
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7 thoughts on “Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori Episode 8: Inconsistencies Mounting”
I actually really liked this episode. I think the point was to show the other side of Gure and why he’s so happy-go-lucky. I also really loved the story of his relationship with the kid, mainly because I can see the underlying cultural discussions: the high suicide rate among students, the incomparable pressure families put on their children in Japan to achieve success. We are shown that this kid has no friends and a home life he’s not comfortable returning to, so Gure gives him that, gives him a place to belong for the first time in what is probably years for this kid. I think his sometimes crazy character adds a lot to a show that could become bland otherwise.
In small doses, he’s fine. But an entire episode focused on him was too much for me. And while I get the point the episode was making, the short time frame and time investment in the kid made the story pretty shallow and made it seem like the problem was fairly trivial rather than a deeply ingrained one that would require more than coffee and kindness to overcome.