Anti-Impz Brigade Unite!
I must have been waiting here all this while. Stopping in this one place. A wind sweeping away that something settled on the ground. I’ve always been waiting here.
Once again, the anime starts with some philosophical lines, maybe from the poem itself? I didn’t want to risk spoiling some of the anime by reading the poem so I’m still interpreting the lines based on the anime itself. From the episode titles on ANN, it seems that each episode will focus in on a specific character. Last week’s featured person was Takuma and this week the story revolves around Hayami.
The episode begins with Takuma’s uncle trying to molest Takuma in bed (Not really). Unfortunately for him, Takuma is already up bright and early and went off to meet Hayami, who is sitting in the pasture. He still has his eyesight, which is kind of a bummer because that sort of ruins the whole blind harem thing he had going on. When he sees Hayami, he asks if she wants to join Hinata and the girls in showing him around town. He stretches out his hand to help her up, and we’re shown a flashback to a little girl, perhaps a younger Hinata, offering some candy (getinthevanihavecandy). Hayami picks herself off the ground by herself and tells Takuma to quit getting involved with her once again. My tsundere senses are tingling.
Takuma then walks to town by himself, but is ambushed by Otoha on the way. They talk about how he’s slowly getting used to being able to see again, and she tells him not to waste it and that he can do anything as long as he never gives up. Their chat is interrupted however, by the arrival of Hinata, Maki, and Hamaji. Takuma turns to ask if Otoha wants to join them in town, but she has disappeared once more.
Takuma begins his tour of the village but is interrupted by Yui, who is seriously beginning to get on my nerves. She starts bragging about how her ricefields bring all the boys to the yard, claiming that she is the savior of the village. However, Hamaji states that the number of Hinata’s family’s rice fields rivals Yui’s, causing her to spaz and fall into a mud puddle. Nice one, Hamaji. They continue to walk around town until they come to a suspension bridge. Takuma asks what resides on the other side, but the girls tell him to never cross the bridge, for an evil monster that terrorized the village a long time ago resides there. Takuma believes the story to be a joke until he glances at Hinata and notices a saddened expression on her face.
Their tour ends at a drugstore, where Hamaji brings out some bottles of Ramune, dressed in a meido outfit. VERY NICE!! She goes back inside to get some expired food and Maki comes with her, leaving Hinata and Takuma alone. Takuma asks Hinata personally what lies beyond the bridge, and she repeats that a monster is there. Takuma claims that there are no such things as monsters, but Hinata remains silent. Later, in the evening, our hero, of course, defies the girls and crosses the bridge. He notices a spring and is amazed at how clean the water is. He then hears a splash, and looks up to find a n3kk1d Hayami staring at him.
Night falls, and we find Takuma hanging upside down from a tree. Hayami is sharpening a knife, which Takuma thinks is to kill him. He tries to persuade her not to slice ‘n dice his ass as she turns around, but she cuts the rope holding him instead. She asks him why he came, and he replies that he wanted to see the monster, pointing to a bag filled with cup ramen that he says is payment for the bite she gave him before. The anime switches to a shot of Hinata and her grandpa, who asks Hinata if she showed Takuma around. She says that he was excited about the town, but he responds by saying that Takuma has crossed the bridge.
Takuma and Hayami are munching on some ramen as Hayami tells Takuma to eat up and hurry back home. She tells him not to get involved with her for like the 30th time, and he counters by saying that she gave him the ramen to begin with. He states that by such a simple action, shouldn’t they be able to become friends? BOOM, FLASHBACK! Inside a church, a younger Hayami is sobbing until loli Hinata offers her some candy. Back in the present time, Hayami insists that she needs no friends, provoking Takuma to ask her, why? She states that she has to be hated and walks inside an abandoned trailer, leaving Takuma alone. As Takuma walks back from the bridge, he runs into Hinata, who asks him why he went to the other side. He states that he wanted to talk to Hayami and asks Hinata why everyone hates her. He keeps talking, believing that Hinata also feels saddened by Hayami’s situation but suddenly, Hinata breaks her unnatural silence and demands that he never talks to Hayami ever again.
The next day Hinata walks to Takuma’s house to accompany him to school, but apparently, he has already left. The scene switches to inside Hayami’s trailer, where she wakes up by falling off of a makeshift bed, as someone asks her what flavor ramen she would like to eat. Still drowsy, she asks why ramen so early in the morning, but catches herself and looks up to find a smiling Takuma looking at her. Hinata is walking to school alone when Hayami and Takuma’s shouts break the silence. Hayami calls Takuma a pervert and runs to school but has Takuma hot on her heels, with a fresh handprint on his face. As they enter the schoolgrounds, two students hanging by the gate complain that seeing the “roach” so early in the morning is bad for their health. When they see Takuma running after her, they joke around, saying that the roaches have multiplied. Hinata overhears them and clenches her fists before walking away.
In class, the teacher tells them that they are making pinwheels for art. Hinata begins to ask if Takuma wants to work together but Takuma is already all over Hayami. Hinata insists that Takuma works with her and Takuma agrees…that all three of them can work together. Yui gets up and demands why Takuma wants Hinata to work with the roach, but Takuma declares that there is no roach. Hayami stands up and proceeds to leave the classroom but before she departs, she smirks and tells Yui that she can have her fun with [Hayami]. Yui and her two cronies get up and leave, causing Takuma to ask the teacher to stop them. The teacher merely scratches her head and shrugs, prompting Takuma to get up and leave. Hinata attempts to stop him, but Takuma doesn’t listen and pushes her aside, running out the door.
Behind the school, Yui and the boys are beating up Hayami, commanding her to realize and to understand her place in this town. Takuma runs towards them, shouting at Yui to stop. As he approaches them, Yui demands whether he wants to be known as a roach too, causing Hayami to remember the candy scene once again. However, this time, she also recalls a burning house up in flames and a crying Hinata running past her with tears in her eyes.
Yui states once again, that by helping Hayami, Takuma will be a roach as well, but Takuma ignores her and picks Hayami up. He answers back to Yui that Hayami isn’t filth and attempts to leave with her but is blocked by the other boys. As they start to clobber him, Hinata comes running up, shouting that Takuma isn’t a roach and that he’s different from Hayami. She vows that she will save Takuma from Hayami and begs Yui not to hurt him. Later at night, Takuma is helping Hayami across the bridge and Hayami asks him not to get involved with her for the 70th time so far. Takuma merely asks if she’s still going to bother with that, and holds out his hand. She stares at it, hesitating at first, but finally places her hand in his, as they walk back to her trailer together.
Takuma and Hayami work together to make pinwheels, and they begin to realize their feelings for one another. After completing their work of art, they sit together on a hill, pinwheel in hand. Takuma remarks how peaceful it is, while wishing for a wind to blow. Hayami gets up, and declares that the wind has already blown and how “A new wind will sweep away that something settled on the ground.” Takuma looks up at her face and she is smiling, causing him to smile as well. Abruptly, a breeze blows, and Hayami raises the pinwheel to the sky, as it breathes in the new wind.
I really like the pinwheel motif for some reason. At this point, I’m still trying to figure out what it means, but I really just like it, haha. Perhaps pinwheels symbolize how life keeps going even if a catastrophic event occurs in one’s life. The wind that causes the pinwheel to move represents the breath of life that forever blows hope into our hearts. I mean, that probably sounds really cheesy but that’s all I can come up with as a feasible symbolization right now. I think that this will end somewhat happily, although I’m picked up some School Day vibes when that knife was out.
So Otoha is probably imaginary. I’ve concluded that after two episodes of her disappearing, that she could possibly be a reincarnation of Takuma’s dead mother that comes from the pain in his heart. She is trying to urge him past the devastation of her death and give him the gift of sight. I think that the reason that she doesn’t appear as herself is that the shock of “seeing” his mom could damage Takuma even further. Of course, there could be no reason at all, as this isn’t ‘Death of a Salesman’ or ‘Catcher in the Rye’ that I’m examining.
I’m hoping that Hamaji and Maki don’t develop feelings for Takuma later on in the series. I think that the rivalry between Hinata and Hayami could shape out to be a good one, as in the past they seemed to have been friends. I pray to god that Yui doesn’t do the whole “Beats up Takuma, gets in trouble later, Takuma helps her out, she falls for him” thing as I really think she’s the weakest character in the anime. I can’t see any character development coming out of her, as her ego and two faced nature are getting to me. Maybe she sees herself as a “defender of justice”, kind of like Light from Death Note. The way that she abuses Hayami makes me think that perhaps Yui is the one who burns the house down. I guess that’s why Hayami seems to smirk whenever she sees Yui’s face.
Although I still think that Takuma is a bit too feminine and young looking for the main character role, I liked how he stood up for Hayami. Although that action was probably so the plot could move along and his harem could grow bigger, it was a nice gesture of his. I don’t think that Takuma will be able to defend Hayami later on if force comes into play, as Takuma isn’t exactly the manliest of men. This could create an interesting plot scenario if Hayami and Takuma are forcefully separated by Hinata’s grandfather or something.
Overall the episode held my interest through the nice art and beautiful scripting at times. I think that each episode will focus on solving the questions asked in the beginning of the respective episodes, as the wind theme was displayed near the end of this one. Toodles~