Kuzu no Honkai 02

It is still quite hot in here, and I’m pretty sure it’s not just me. More complications arise in familiar and unexpected ways.

“I’m Here For That Warmth”

As if this series isn’t complicated enough in its unrequited love and compromise, there are two new faces added to the mix. It is interesting to see the two main characters get essentially a taste of their own medicine, where everyone knows just how bad it tastes (there is a lot of tasting going on here). Once again this series doesn’t shy away from the honest truths of awkward love and manages to focus on some quite mature and intriguing plot twists.

The first of the foils is Kamomebato Noriko, who is so blatant an osananajimi (childhood friend) stereotype that I don’t even know why they bother including her here at all. The childhood friend never wins, but she is actually pretty good comic relief. The problem is that it’s comic relief we’ve seen so many times before. She is a classic tsundere, possessive, twin-tailed loli that she could be pulled from a half dozen Kugi-Rie series. We’ll get to see her struggle with someone she has known for a long time being stolen by a new interest. Oh hey, that’s the exact issue the two main characters are also dealing with.

The second of the two new faces is Ebato Sanae, and this one is considerably more interesting. For a moment I feared the beginning of an obvious, and wholly out-of-place, harem. But this series isn’t about Mugi alone. It’s about the relationship between Mugi and Hana, and how it is tested. Well, Ecchan certainly seems to pull Hana’s strings pretty surprisingly at the end of this episode. It’s clear to the viewer pretty quickly that there are some yuri feelings flying around, and that’s OK. This presentation very expertly normalizes something that is usually played for laughs or fan-service. It’s probably because of the seriousness on this front that the Noriko story feels so unearned. The pace is something interesting though, as once again we get to jump right in to the action of it and forgo the usual drawn-out tension. This is refreshing to say the least, as without a clear comedic approach the build-up to a romantic moment or relationship can be very painful. Something this show addresses well.

Episode Score
8.5/10 (Very Good)

Summary: More angles are added to the love-octagon, or maybe nonagon, with considerable focus still on the prospects of unrequited love. Yuri fans rejoice.

kuzu-no-honkai-02-forbidden-love

Extra thoughts:
– She must have loli-disorder. Stops growing at 10.
– How has Hana never met her before?
– His singing reminds me of The World God Only Knows.
– “Stick out your tongue,” no he’s not gonna… oh my.
– This show can really turn on the heat quick.
– Who the heck is this girl?
– Well THIS was an unexpected addition to the love-trapezoid.
– Senpai has good specs.
– Nobody in high school really gets love, probably.
– This got yuri on fire real fast.

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