Hibike! Euphonium S2 – 11

Reina looks to figure out where she stands in Taki-sensei’s life now that she knows a little more about him. Little does she realize, she already has a pretty active relationship going on through all of this. You know what I mean.

“First Love Trumpet”

Alternate title: “Angsty Reina.” But that is kind of the best and worst part of young romance – or any new romance for that matter. There’s a certain tension and expectation just waiting to be fulfilled. Kind of like how great it to open presents, but wondering what you’ll get before opening them is a special feeling on its own. The build-up can really make or break the pay-off in many cases. Unfortunately for Reina, there’s no pay-off in the world big enough that Taki-sensei could reasonably manage to satisfy her whole life of waiting. It’s something difficult to understand for the older folks, jaded as they (we) are. So what are Reina’s chances? Slim at best.

A lot of the tension in this episode came more from Reina and Kumiko’s brief rift. It’s been said time and time again, but they really are the main relationship of this series. Take that as you will, but pretty much every major relationship stereotype is on display here – and Kumiko is definitely the clueless guy stand-in. If you have to ask what the problem is, you’re in trouble. She has been handed all the secrets throughout this series so it only makes sense that would come back to bite her eventually. Reina knows that Kumiko kept Taki-sensei’s wife from her because it would be painful to know, but that doesn’t excuse it. They’re friends (or more) and they should share important information like that.

It’s hard to tell from the way this season is being presented who Reina really loves more, Taki-sensei or Kumiko (or trumpet-kun). There’s friendship, and then there’s this. Perhaps Reina is just letting out all of the romantic frustration that would get her love sent to jail on Kumiko. Either way, the nationals seem to be most pressing now that they’re only one episode away. Reina now wants to win gold for Taki-sensei’s wife as part of an odd “she’s dead I’ll respect her wishes” kind of vibe. It’s sketchy ground already for her to want to be his rebound already. But the thought is pretty sincere from the looks of it. What will Reina do win they win gold? (Because they obviously will) You just know this has to end with a confession. That or her and Kumiko will kiss and it’ll transition to ‘the end’ through a heart-shaped cutout. You never know.

Episode Score
8.9/10 (Still Great)

Summary: Kumiko and Reina’s relationship hits rough waters for a while as Reina’s angst overtakes her. How do you set yourself up as a rebound respectably and not be just a rebound? Reina tries to understand her dead competition.


Extra thoughts:
– How can you tell which shoes are yours!?
– The elementary school hats are so cute.
– Don’t tell her to aim high, you’re above her!
– Pretty sure Taki-sensei described Kumiko.
– What is Kumiko looking at here?
– Please don’t go to his wife’s gra- oh too late.
– After going through all the screenshots, Taki-sensei really should have seen this coming.



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