HaruChika 08

First love can be a complicated situation, especially when it’s being remembered from a long time past. Are you sure it actually happened the way you think it did?

The daily life of this group is pretty cute. They’ve gotten close and aren’t afraid to tease each other, assume funny situations, and work together as a functioning ensemble. “Hey, would you like to line up that part at F with me?” – “Oh, me too. Let me join.” These are the kinds of conversations our band could have used in high school! Chika is as dedicated as always to learning her parts independently, still somewhat worried about bringing down the group. You’re sounding pretty good though. Keep up the good work Chika! Don’t forget, it’s not all self-practice that matters, you need to work well with others too. That’s also the opposite of most high school bands. Getting people to practice outside of rehearsal can be a fool’s errand.

Dramatic clarinet-holding Serizawa introduces our mystery of the week. Her Aunt is in search of a long lost first love. A pretty noble pursuit, but also a little creepy. Couldn’t just let it be, I suppose. To our fortune, the son of the private investigator has gotten involved, and attends the very same school our gang does! What exactly is a “first love sommelier” you might ask? I’m going to assume a weirdo teenager who’s had a rough love life and doesn’t understand French as a start.

The fact that all of the so called ‘black-listed’ clubs and students are all lined up on one floor in the old school building is amazing. The Youth Safari Park. Sounds like a magical place. Turns out the first love sommelier, Toru Asagiri, is just as weird as expected – running his club/business as a kind of wine-tasting memory recollection service. He even, somehow, has cute lackeys.

I must have looked away for a second, because this high school music show somehow turned in to an anthropomorphized horror in the deep forest. Interesting way to tell a story, and categorize people without clearly giving away their motives. Turns out her first love in university was just a jerk though. That’s a pretty common occurrence.

(Side note: First love is complicated. I suggest just skipping right to the second instead.)

It’s pretty obvious, when observing from the outside, that a memory usually isn’t an exact recollection – it’s more about the way you choose to remember something, and how that memory evolves over time. If you were to replicate your mother’s cooking exactly from when you were a kid, it probably still wouldn’t taste correct, right? It takes a strong will to be able to parse the reality from your mind’s creations.

(Side note: Wait, they were late for practice because of this? What idiots.)

These kids are going to quite a bit of trouble for another person who probably just wants to be left to their business. I can understand that Serizawa thinks her Aunt may get in to trouble, but she is an adult. The way she dragged Haru and the weirdo to Chika’s house at night was so random. Sleep-over! And it wouldn’t be a proper sleep-over unless there was heartfelt conversation between friends in the middle of the night. So much bonding.

We finally get the reveal as to where and what ‘Benjant’ has been up to all these years. And he’s dead. All of them are apparently. More interesting yet, he killed all of the ‘children of the forest’ and himself as well! Really didn’t see that twist coming. Better take some notes Mr. Shyamalan. There really isn’t ever an explanation provided, other than some kind of revenge (thanks, Esperanto). The forest animals did seem to be kinda mean, but to just straight up poison them? This whole thing was rather strange. There was definitely a lot of deeper meaning to her story than I cared to read in to for a show of this type. Mystery solved though, right?

As for the future of this show, I’m not exactly sure where it’s going. We didn’t get any real progress towards the over-arching plot this week. I think it’s about getting to participate in the music competition, but I suppose that’s pretty much a side affair to the mystery of the week. I’m definitely liking the way their building the character relationships though, so that can keep going like it is! More time at Chika’s home would also be fun. She’s at her utmost level of honesty there, and she has a kitty! Until next time though, let’s hope we get some progress on Haru and Chika’s rivalry and hear some band music as well!

Next time: “The Gaze of Asmodeus”

Extra thoughts:
– Still way too many great still shots of faces and reactions in this show!
– Why did Serizawa take Kaiyu’s timpani mallet?
– Wasn’t expecting that much detail on the animation in the bath scene for a show like this. You could see a lot more than it probably warranted!
– Hey kids, don’t bring your school’s sheet music in the tub – even in a plastic bag!
– It’s nice to see actual, correct sheet music in a TV show! This episode had a lot of it!
– The music on Chika’s page is totally one of the background music themes.

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