NANA – 14
Even though it’s already May, Hachi can still feel the cold wind; she had thought Tokyo would be warmer. She’s waiting with Nana and Shin outside the restaurant where Shouji works. Shin gets a call from one of his lady customers, so he tells the girls that he has to leave on urgent business. Nana says that he can do what he wants as long as he doesn’t soil the band’s name. Hachi takes a much more motherly approach, trying to counsel him about going home. She does warn him that painful experiences will come from not taking women seriously. After Shin goes off, Nana also starts to leave, but Hachi stops her. Nana sees no point in Hachi waiting if Shouji is going to come by later anyway. Hachi explains that she wants Shouji to think that she’s gone home so that he can find her still waiting for him. Nana declares that she hates women who are so calculating, but says that she’ll keep Hachi company if Hachi is waiting because she simply loves Shouji.
Sitting on the curb, Hachi sneezes from the cold, so Nana takes off her jacket and gives it to her. In return, Hachi gives Nana her scarf. Listening to Nana’s humming, Hachi admires how Nana’s eyes have no impurity and thinks that Nana’s more suited for a white snow scene than a city where you can’t see the stars. Hachi feels that she is indeed calculative and impure, but she’s pretending to be pure so that Nana wouldn’t hate her. Inside the restaurant, the shift is finally ending, so both Shouji and Sachiko are getting off work. Sachiko does not to want to see Shouji, even as he tells her that he’s breaking up with his girlfriend. She continues running outside, but Shouji catches her and hugs her, in full view of Hachi and Nana. Hachi is shocked at the name Sachiko and even more shocked at what she just saw.
When Nana asks Shouji what he’s doing and who the girl is, Shouji claims that she’s his girlfriend. Things start clicking in Hachi’s mind – how Shouji wanted to talk and how Sachiko had apologized to her – but she still can’t believe it. Nana goes over to punch Shouji, but Sachiko holds her back. Sachiko offers herself up to be hit instead because she feels responsible for falling in love with Shouji. She doesn’t want to run or hide anymore, so she doesn’t care if Nana hits her. Since Shouji is also protecting Sachiko, Nana turns to Hachi who has been silent this entire time. Nana tells Hachi to fight for Shouji and to get him back, but Hachi finally says that she doesn’t need him – she doesn’t want to see his face anymore. As Nana drags her home, Hachi feels that she’s lost. That night, Nana sleeps together with Hachi in Hachi’s bed.
The next day, Hachi stays in bed, listening to her Trapnest CD, and repeatedly dreams about Shouji. She thinks she wakes up to Ren of Trapnest ringing her doorbell, but it turns out to be another dream. Her real doorbell then rings and the person responsible is Junko, who came because she learned about the situation from Shouji. Junko reveals that Shouji is worried about Hachi, but Hachi doesn’t want Shouji to worry about her when he doesn’t even come himself. Junko then says that it’s painful for Shouji too, which causes Hachi to accuse her of supporting Shouji. Junko has to explain that Shouji is just as important a friend as Hachi is. She expresses her concern over how Hachi always behaves like the victim and says that Hachi was always thinking of herself and not Shouji. Junko thinks that love is also about people’s relations with each other; if you can’t think about the other party, the relationship won’t go well.
Nana returns home that night to find Hachi sitting lifelessly at the table. Having taken some of Junko’s words to heart, Hachi remembers that she hasn’t made dinner and feels guilty for only thinking about herself. Fortunately, Nana brought back bentos along with a letter to Hachi from her mother. Inside the envelope, Hachi finds the front row tickets for the upcoming Trapnest concert that she had ordered earlier. In retrospect, Hachi felt like she was abandoned by luck every day back then, and to that extent, she didn’t have luck in lotteries. That’s why Hachi feels that those tickets were prepared by God for Nana’s sake.
That was quite artistically well done. I loved how everything was in slow-motion when Nana was about to punch Shouji, but then it all speeded up right after Sachiko stopped her. It made you feel like you were in Hachi’s shoes, watching as everything unfolded before her eyes. The animation quality was pretty good this week too, but once again I got a high resolution raw, so that probably had a big impact. Oh, and the part with Nana on the toilet was hilarious, something I completely missed when I read the manga.
This episode reinforced two things for me: Junko is right about Hachi always being a victim and Nana acts like a man in front of Hachi. If you think about it, Hachi’s character is more often than not crying or whining because of something. Thinking about it that way isn’t very flattering to her character though. In contrast, Nana here was about to clobber Shouji and get in a fist fight, something that’s not very ladylike, but it fits her character perfectly.
We’ve gone through a lot about Hachi and Shouji in the past few episodes, and now the focus will be shifting a bit to Nana. Next episode should have Misato-chan :)