Boy did I read those signs wrong last week. I mean it’s impressive that I ever even got in a relationship in the first place with how romantically oblivious I am! Ok, I might be exaggerating just a smidge and I think we’re basically on track with where the series was going all along but I didn’t expect it to get there quite so quickly. Before we get into it, I’m ridiculously swamped at work, how about you Karandi?
Ridiculously swamped is definitely how I’m feeling about work. That said, it isn’t in my nature to cut corners so I’m giving it my all and I’m seeing some light at the end of the tunnel that might make all the effort worthwhile. The blog on the other-hand has taken a definite hit with me just not having enough energy to write posts last week. I’m kind of trying to do a marathon catch up this Sunday but I’ve still got work stuff so we’ll see how far I get through the watch list this week.
A little peak behind the curtain for you all. I’m writing this before Karandi write her part. After she does I usually go back and if I want to add anything I do so then. And yet I still know for sure that she is just as overworked as I am. What I don’t know is if it affected her anime enjoyment. Let me tell you after a full week of 14 hour workdays, episodes have to have something special to hold my attention and well… this wasn’t it.
See, I felt this episode was a lot more interesting than some of the previous ones. The direct focus on Seigi rather than some random customer helped things feel more immediately relevant as well as Shouko getting some time to shine (given she’s consistently been a great supporting character). Also, given this followed on from the anime sending us strong boys love vibes it really kind of turned things on its head with this episode and then seemed to backtrack at the end with the final result being I’m now not sure if I want to pair Seigi with Richard, Shouko, or whether I just want the status quo to continue. Okay, I’m clearly emotionally invested in this cast despite the fairly low key nature of the show so far.
I’m not the hugest fan of romantic storylines but there have been exceptions. Seigi and Shouko are perfectly lovely people and they make a cute couple. I’m routing for them. In a way, this romantic venture was in fact better than whatever that was last week. As in better written, more logical, better paced even cuter. But it wasn’t as cheesy and slightly ridiculous and I missed that!
Basically, Seigi has been trying to move his relationship forward with Shouko, he even bought her a gemstone and everything. However, before he has the chance to give it to her he finds out that she has a marriage interview scheduled with a childhood friend of hers. Nice guy Homura no less. Boy, this poor kid just cannot catch a break when it comes to women. It’s a pretty classic romcom set up with all the tropes. Slight misunderstandings, two leads that seem both incapable of directly communicating their feeling or picking up of the very obvious signals the other person is giving off. A super understanding third party that ends up wishing them the best. All that stuff. Karandi, do you like classic romantic comedies?
I’m a sucker for sweet romance and romantic comedies. While my standard viewing fare is a little darker, there’s nothing like a 90 minute rom-com to help you just chill and relax. And Seigi works perfectly in the frame of a romantic comedy given he’s nice enough that you want him to succeed and yet clueless enough that success seems to continue to elude him. He’s not the most interesting character but he doesn’t need to be for that kind of storyline to work and he’s helped by the way his personality bounces off of Shouko and Richard. Honestly, I’m finding the relationship part of this story far more interesting than the ‘cases’.
There’s also a little flashback to Richard’s school days and his first(?), true(?), love. I didn’t care much for that either. It seemed rather contrived really. What I do like though is this constant and super insistent narrative that Richard’s good looks are a burden to him and that he has resented them all his life. I’m sure it’s not the first time this has been done but I can’t seem to recall this treatment for a male character before. The gender reversal is fun. And it really does change the way the question is dealt with. No one assumes Richard is particularly unintelligent or has only looks to offer for instance. A few people say it but it’s obviously to purposefully insult him. And he isn’t really concerned with proving he’s more than just a pretty face. It’s an interesting dynamic although it often feels completely out of place in this show.
Yeah, Richard’s first love story wasn’t overly necessary here. It didn’t particularly add anything and I’d rather have learned more about his family situation. This was probably the weakest part of the episode.
And then Richard threw a hissy fit. I mean you can read all sorts of meaning into the fact that Richard suddenly decided to leave the country without even telling Seigi. Barely leaving any details behind. If you want to root for the BL angle, maybe seeing Seigi and Shouko get closer made him sad and he left in a fit of jealousy or depression. Or, maybe talking about his own past made him want to seek out the girl that got away so that he doesn’t end up regretting the things he didn’t do. Or this is just a huge troll, he’s still a shady conman and he had to get out of the country with a bunch of stolen gems before the police got to him! (My favourite is no. 3)
I’m thinking he’s decided to deal with his family situation. He hasn’t closed the store for good so I hope he’s coming back. I’m assuming he didn’t tell Seigi because he quite rightly assumes that Seigi will butt in unnecessarily. Then again, leaving without telling your employee and friend that you are going is a horrible thing to do regardless of his justification. As ridiculous and cheesy as it would be I’m hoping Seigi gets on a plane, flies to London, tracks Richard down and punches him in that pretty face of his before dragging him back to Japan.
Thanks for Reading From
Irina and Karandi