Too sugary sweet… You are too sparkling, Kyoko-sama!
Man, it was a long wait for the appearance of Skip Beat after a two-week break in Japan. We finally get to see the conclusion for the CM arc, and I must say that it is so cool just to see this animated. When we last left the duo, it seemed that their idea of using the Kyarara bottle was stolen by Erika. As Kyoko is the one who was supposed to initiate the act, what would she do?
After a tense silence, the director told them that they would be disqualified if they did not act right now. Kyoko said they would act now and asked for some Kyarara. She passed the bottled Kyarara to Moko and took a can herself. Moko was already panicking but Kyoko simply told her to follow her lead. Kyoko turned her back against Moko and suddenly turned over to splash the contents of Kyarara on Moko. The ambiance became tense, only for Kyoko to defuse the situation by smiling. Moko realized what Kyoko wanted to do, and tried to splash her bottled Kyarara on Kyoko.
However, she only managed to let the contents gush all over the floor. Shocked at the sudden gushing of liquid, she flustered. The two started laughing after that pathetic scene, and ended the act with a flourish by ending it the same way as Erika did. Needless to say, their act was more convincing and the audience could feel how glad Moko was when she said “thank you.”
When the auditions ended, the director was surprised how Kyoko managed to think of a fresh idea with so little time. He thought that they were finished for sure. They eventually decided to sign Kyoko and Moko for the CM. After informing of their result, Kyoko was called back about the decision to use Kyarara. Moko and Kyoko left the audition center to go back to the company. Moko asked whether Kyoko knew ahead of time about the different effects of shaking the bottle and can, Kyoko replied that it was common sense. Moko realized that Kyoko was much more competent than she let on. After the audition, Kyoko dragged Moko around to celebrate their new friendship. After hearing how alone Kyoko was in her school years, Moko realized that they were very similar. Moko also realized that she could no longer get angry with Kyoko, even if she wanted to.
Erika, on the other hand, was trying to hurt the two physically so that they could not participate in the CM. Her attempt to shove Moko into the fountain failed when Kyoko accidentally pushed Moko away. When Moko berated Erika’s attempts to hurt them, Moko also said that Erika would never reach her level because she never tried and struggled hard to get what she wanted. Everything for her was on a silver platter, and Moko challenged her to work hard. When Erika was able to work crazily hard to succeed, Moko would consider her as a true rival.
Moko realized that she really changed and worked hard after Kyoko’s words. On the bus, Kyoko was extremely impressed by Moko’s inspirational words to Erika. Kyoko said that it almost felt like they were great friends. Moko’s annoyances rose, as she thought that they were already good friends. Moko realized that her dreams of being an actress blossomed because of Kyoko, and gave her 100 points on her LOVE me card. During the CM, it looked like Kyoko and Moko were successful. Maria and Lory came to check on them. Ren was also at the vicinity to work.
Maria told Ren that she met Kyoko in acting classes. After work, Maria informed Kyoko about Ren viewing their CM, and Kyoko was a little disappointed she could not personally tell Ren about her job. Moko started making fun of Kyoko because she was so in love with the school uniform that she refused to take it off. Moko explained that it seemed that Kyoko always wished to go to school. Kyoko became shy, and rushed into the dressing room. However, she was glad to wear a school uniform, even just for a while.
Man, I was starting to wonder if Skip Beat is never going to show already! I am so glad that it is back because I am suffering from withdrawal symptoms hoping to see how the CM arc will be animated. Needless to say, I will say that they did a competent if not great job. There are some parts that I felt needed more sparkles. For example, the part where Kyoko and Moko finally knocked their drinks together was a powerful scene that felt way understated, but perhaps that is the reason that the director wanted to put through. I am not sure if that makes sense though, since I felt that it should be more prominent and strengthened. How, I have no clue but I felt that the delivery of that scene could have been better.
That said, it really made a heartwarming feel to the show for the Moko and Kyoko friendship. I could really feel the transformation of Moko’s attitude toward Kyoko in these two episodes, and the pace of the relationship progression was just right. Moko simply did not want to rely on anyone because she feared to hurt others because of her character. However, even Moko had no way to defend against the gloriously kind-hearted. Say what you want about how she transformed into some kick-ass superhero but Kyoko is still the same old Kyoko except with extreme hatred on Dicktaro. Obviously, she also grew some spine.
I am not sure if the Erika confrontation scene is in the manga, but I felt that the anime made a better impression in terms of Moko challenging Erika to do her best. I could feel that Moko never really hated Erika, but she felt that she was starved by Erika’s wealth. As a bystander, I could tell that all Erika wanted was a friend, even though her warped princess attitude prevented her to understand that. If Erika did not care for Moko, she would not deliberately go out of her way to hinder Moko so much. I just feel that Erika and Moko are really not that different in their inability to express their true self and feelings properly. It’s a pity that Erika will not be back anymore because I will want to see a reformed Erika.
Another thing is how we see the improving relationship between Moko and Kyoko at the very end of the show. I do not think Moko would have poked that much fun at Kyoko if Moko did not consider Kyoko to be a good friend. In a way, I am glad that the always alone Kyoko finally have a comrade that she can find solace in. It’s really hard to survive in the acting industry while fending all the assaults from all sources, and it is always good to have someone you can trust. Moko, like Kyoko, is probably very trustworthy to the extent of shocking, since we have so many terrible examples of prima donnas and gossipers in the Skip Beat world.
At the rate this anime is going, it feels like we will be ending the series with the Dicktaro x Kyoko cat fight. I do wonder if they will have a sequel after this considering that they still have material for at least a good 13-26 episodes, but I feel that any sequel will probably be 2-3 years from now. That is a little sad, but I think that shoujo anime is just not particularly popular among Japanese audiences. Please prove me wrong from this, since I am saying this from how I see it. It’s not driven by hard facts of audience ratings.
Anyway, the next arc will prove to be hilarious. Kyoko will be Ren’s manager. I cannot wait!