Apparently getting pre-emptively rejected by Minorin was such a shock to the system that Ryuji caught freaking pneumonia. Or maybe it was plot-itis and an excuse to start this next arc after the break but believably have everything still fresh from Christmas Eve, given that time has passed but the characters still haven’t talked about it. Ryuji might have been out of it for weeks, but Taiga, we can only assume, has been bubbling over with heartache throughout the whole timeskip. She’s also done some thinking, though, and concluded in her wisdom that Minorin does like Ryuji, but doesn’t want to interfere with his relationship with Taiga. Continue reading
All gussied up in formal wear, Ryuji and Taiga head to the Christmas Eve party where everyone is set to have a good time—except for their teacher, who is going to a property investment seminar for single women. Why would you hold such a seminar on Christmas Eve night? Because it’s not like you’d have a date if you were the target demographic! The main joke around poor sensei is still that she’s thirty and unmarried and thus should obviously resign herself to life as a cold and practical spinster, because there’s nothing more hilarious than society inflicting existential hopelessness on women based on their marital status and age. Anyway, everyone’s going to the party except the teacher, and Minorin, who looks utterly lead-weight depressed every time we cut to her. Continue reading
Don’t you hate it when you symbolically break your best friend’s heart? Like, shatter it all over the gymnasium floor?
As everyone happily prepares for the Christmas Eve party, it’s clear to both Taiga and Ryuji that something is up with Minorin. She’s practicing softball every minute she’s not in class, apparently still obsessed with playing her best to make up for her mistake in the last game. This energetic dedication is normal for Minorin, but the emotional oomf usually behind it just isn’t there, and when she runs off to practice she seems less dedicated to the sport than she is to getting away from Ryuji and Taiga as quickly as she can. Continue reading
Taiga is celebrating the end of her suspension—you know, for beating the actual living shit out of the student president—by shopping with Ryuji, and is also celebrating the Christmas Spirit because it turns out Taiga McFreaking Goddamn loves Christmas. Continue reading
Look, there’s politics (even if they are only on a high school council level) and a literal fight in this episode, I had to make a Hamilton reference somewhere.
So this week Kitamura drops some more Drama Bombs re: his romantic feelings, which is something he’s gotten very good at. This time we see a lot more of the melancholy and raw side of him that’s hidden beneath his bravado, as the poor boy crumples and confesses what he’s been keeping as an embarrassed secret from even Ryuji, his best friend: he’s in love with Kano. The militaristic and terrifying student president lifted him out of his heartbreak after Taiga rejected his confession of love, and throwing himself into student council work at her side made Kitamura feel alive, productive and happy. Somewhere in there he fell for Kano hopelessly, but considered himself unworthy since she’s so powerful and great, so he was going to wait until he’d been elected as/promoted to president before he asked her out. But… Continue reading
Despite beginning with a parade of double entendre and Kitamura having a breakdown in class, yelling for all to hear that he’s not going to run for student president… this isn’t a particularly exciting episode. Like the one before it it’s a collection of quiet and thoughtful scenes strung together a tad clunkily that spends most of its time hinting at deeper goings-on and doesn’t actually get to any sort of plot action until the very end. Which is entirely frustrating because the show is dangling the promise of actually understanding Kitamura in front of me, but is dragging out the mystery of his inner self for as long as it possibly can. Come on, guys, my crops are dying. Continue reading
This is a weird episode to review because not much… happens. There’s a lot of day-to-day activity padding interwoven with subtle hints at deeper emotional subplots, and it feels rather like a breather episode (can you have those non-action genre series?) where they felt so much happened in the previous arc we need some downtime, lowkey filled with intrigue. So here’s what you missed on not-Glee:
Taiga’s class managed to win the beauty pageant, talent act, and race to crown the queen of the school all pretty much thanks to her, so the girl who was once terror of the corridors is now held in high regard. That, and a rumour started during the wrestling match’s performance run that if Taiga touches you your dreams will come true, earning her the title “Palmtop Tiger of Happiness” and a whole lot of personal confusion. Ryuji wonders if there’s any truth to this new weird tidbit of schoolyard superstition—after all, Taiga’s touching him all the time, be it slapstick violence or otherwise, so shouldn’t he be the happiest person on earth? It’s not like he’s unhappy, he just isn’t feeling any of the ‘love of your life confesses’ or ‘a rich estranged uncle you never knew drops dead and leaves you a fortune’ side effects that are promised. Continue reading
Yeah. Still good.
In the chaos I totally forgot that the school festival also has a beauty pageant portion, which everyone, of course, wanted Ami to compete in… but since she’s the MC, she self-disqualified and nominated Taiga instead out of spite. Because it’s well-established by this point that it’s entirely in-character for Ami to pull the biggest dick move available to her at any given time. Continue reading
Never trust a dude in a marshmallow-pink fashion cravat.
To reiterate: we’re not sure how long Taiga’s been living on her own in the apartment, but it’s an apartment funded by her father, who also has access to her bank account and the ability to take money out of it. Which he does, essentially bribing her to come talk to him. Ryuji, despite realising at the end of the previous episode that he’s probably projecting his own paternal abandonment onto Taiga, is still feeling pretty positive about the Aisaka family reunion, and vocally appreciates, more than once, how hard Taiga’s dad is working to earn back her love. You know, when he’s not leaving her bankrupt and forcing her to be dependent on him. I imagine when he’s not being massively emotionally manipulative he’s quite a sweet guy!! Continue reading
Summer is over, school is back, and there are two interwoven threads in this episode: the class trying to organise their event for the school’s cultural festival, with the boys scheming together to vote for some sort of costume café that gives them an excuse to dress the girls up super cute (which fails spectacularly); and the sudden appearance of Taiga’s estranged father. Remember how I said this show was a varied platter? This also promises to be “part one” in the episode title, so I can only assume we’re diving deep from here on in. Shit’s about to get real. I mean, alongside the costumed wrestling match. Continue reading