The OTP is not seeing much action but at least one person has kept me awake in this episode – Kin-chan!
If Kotoko reminds us “NO PROGRESS HAS BEEN MADE BETWEEN ME AND IRIE-KUN” at the beginning of an episode one more time, I shall have to strangle someone.
Ah, the eternal cherry blossoms and Kotoko. They do go well together.
It’s the beginning of new college year for everyone and Yuko’s sister enters University and joins the tennis club with an enthusiastic intro of – “My goal is to win Naoki’s heart!” There is so much competition for Naoki nowadays, I don’t even care.
But Kotoko does, for some unfathomable reason.
Satomi and Jinko discuss internships and jobs and combined with them getting boyfriends, they are on a sure path to perfectly ordinary grown up lives. Congrats! Am I not suppose to sleep through this part?
Kotoko tries to conjure up a dream of her own career and comes up with this…
Irie Papa receives some troubling news about his health and goes to speak to Aihara Papa about company and Naoki and whether he is selfish for wanting him to take over. Um, yeah?
Kin-chan is feeling extremely down after what he observed between Kotoko & Naoki on Christmas. Oh, Kin-chan, it’s like that Florence & The Machine song: “No light, no light in your bright blue eyes”…
Cap here for Jinko’s crazy ass pants.
Kin-chan slayed me in this scene. He is incredibly hurt himself but continues to reaches out to Kotoko, in his gentle, caring ways.
Kin-chan lets Kotoko try one of his culinary creations but her face falters as soon as she tries it. Not because it tastes bad but because it gets her thinking about the fact that everyone is working hard towards their careers except her.
Kin-chan has the most perfect thing to say to that: “Everyone has their own pace. You just have to find something on your own pace, you see?”
Yup, I just hope that pace won’t take 20 years and still lead her back to Naoki.
But Kotoko can’t separate her career dreams from Naoki and we get a fun dress-up sequence.
Kin-chan decides to contribute to the fantasy – “Then what if you are the boss of a restaurant and your lover is a chef?” But Kotoko immediately cuts him off with “stop joking!”
Aww, his face.
Kotoko finds Naoki at the library and wonders what all those books are for. Alas, not for dating tips or sex techniques.
There is a family gathering to celebrate the beginning of second year in college and everyone is excited that the wayward son has showed up for that.
Naoki not looking too happy with mom’s continuous efforts to force Kotoko on him.
After dinner papa and mama have a serious sit down with Naoki, gently coaxing him into accepting the company job and perhaps marrying Kotoko along the way. She loves him and will be a good, supporting wife, they explain. Bleh, not the right thing to say to a guy who is trying his damndest to rebel.
“It’s up to you!” they insist but Naoki disagrees. “You give me no choices, you already planned all my life for me.”
Kotoko, who was bringing tea, overhears their heated confrontation.
Mama gets pretty angry at Naoki’s defiant attitude and slaps him. He runs off and Kotoko follows him.
Naoki pointedly asks Kotoko if she remembers what she told him about getting in to college to find out what you want to do and asks if she has figured it out yet.
Embarrassed, Kotoko replies that no, she hasn’t.
Kotoko tells Naoki that she understands if he doesn’t love her and she just wishes he could find someone to love and be happy. Instead of addressing that, Naoki fires off, “I want to be a doctor!”
“When did you decide that?”
“Err, just now? Don’t tell anyone!”
Kotoko wonders why he would disclose something so important with her.
Not because you were the one who inspired him to pursue that path, or because you are the only closest person to him, no! That would only be too logical of a conclusion.
While they are on a nice stroll Papa collapses, presumably from a heart condition. And the angst begins in earnest!
What are these feeble attempts at making Kotoko seem more progressive and have her try to figure out what she wants to do in life? Unless this production will deviate drastically from the source material and not make Kotoko follow Naoki into the medical field, all of it is for naught.
Overall, very underwhelming episode. I know there are some necessary motions that the story needs to go through before the denouement but there is a clear lack of passion and playfulness in our OTP that is starting to trouble me.