If there was any doubt as to who the intended audience for a show about boys who like cute mascot figures might have been, the shower sequences showing the soccer player and the flashy guy in the first five minutes may have cleared things up. In case that was just seen as a one off the episode then also gave us the main character having a change of shirts and later the student council president shirtless after training for archery. Not a lot of doubt left about who the creators think will be watching.
Outside of contrived reasons to get the casts’ shirts off this episode deals with Kouta’s reluctance to admit he likes Sanrio and ends with a shopping excursion (before an after credits lead in to what is clearly the issue to deal with next episode).
The whole thing is pretty by the numbers emotional manipulation before we get to the happy resolution for the crisis of the week. It works well enough but it really didn’t add anything to the characters that we hadn’t figured out last week, though I guess Kouta at least makes some progress during the episode.
All and all, this seems to be setting up for a formulaic introduce boy, introduce boy problem, have group overcome problem, buy more merchandise approach to story-telling. It might do something more than that in coming weeks but that would be my prediction at this point. So the only question is, are they at least doing it well? And the answer would be yes. While this undeniably a sales-pitch it actually manages to be moderately entertaining.
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