Special A – 18
「東堂・狩野」 (Toudou / Karino)
Toudou / Karino”
Episode at a Glance:
Still upset about how Tadashi fails to recognize her feelings, Akira ends up running into Sakura and forming a male harem with her out of spite for their failed relationships. Having seen Akira crying though, Megumi suspects that something’s wrong, but Tadashi tells everyone otherwise, even though he knows it’s due to what happened earlier. Noticing that something’s up, Kei recommends that Tadashi go to the top floor bathroom, where he knows Akira is throwing a marriage meeting party. With Tadashi picking up on Kei’s help, Hikari is left to fill in for him.
Meeting with Akira, Tadashi apologizes, but she feels that she should be the one apologizing instead. Unable to say so though, Akira breaks down in tears, inadvertently slaps Tadashi when he reaches for her hand, and runs away. Seeing this, Sakura takes it upon herself to beat Tadashi up, sending him flying outside, where Yahiro finds him and helps him out. While tending to his wounds in the infirmary, Yahiro reminds Tadashi of how he sneaked out with Akira during his birthday party to show her the night sky. Meanwhile, Akira is reminscing about the same thing—how she freely explored the outside world for the first time, and how she started liking Tadashi. Believing she’s always been in an unrequited love, Akira blames herself for acting so selfishly and not saying anything to Tadashi when he finally apologized, but Hikari soon arrives and suggests apologizing in return.
During the cultural festival wrap-up bonfire, Akira finds Tadashi in the garden, so he takes her on a motorcycle ride to see the night sky. Back at Kokusen, Jun brings Sakura some food and tells her that her dress suits her, much to her delight, while Kei saves Hikari from burning herself to death. At the same outlook as before, Akira decides to give up her wish and asks Tadashi if he remembers the form of gratitude she gave him. Taking his hand like before, Akira teaches Tadashi some more dance steps before deciding to go buy some juice. At the vending machine, she decides to clearly say her feelings before bottling them all up, which Tadashi happens to overhear. Embarassed, she punches him and runs off, but after contemplating about covering it up, she runs back and tackles Tadashi, saying that she does like him and is sad that he told her to go find a partner at a marriage meeting. In tears, she apologizes, so Tadashi says there’s no need to lie anymore, hugs her, and tells her not to go to the marriage meeting. Feeling that these were the words she’s wanted to hear, Akira is finally relieved, while Tadashi recalls how he confessed to her when they were kids, but Akira didn’t hear it because she was half asleep.
Back at the Hakusenkan greenhouse, Kei is rubbing it in Hikari’s face how he earned the most proceeds at the host club, while Akira is outside with Tadashi and hesitent to enter. However, Tadashi takes her hand and suggests going in, but gets hit for not being embarassed at all.
「歌声・悪者」 (Utagoe / Warumono)
“Singing Voice / Bad Fellow”
Wow, Megumi speaks for the first time ever! Granted, it was only in her thoughts, but at least they were words this time rather than just sounds. Series firsts aside, this episode mainly revolved around Tadashi and Akira as the title indicated, but there were some brief moments between Jun x Sakura and Kei x Hikari as well. For a rather “mushy” episode, the main source of comedic material was undoubtedly Hikari, but Sakura definitely helped stir things up too.
For Tadashi and Akira in particular, I enjoyed watching the two of them get together in a similar manner to their childhood, which included a bike ride and a subsequent dance lesson. Despite his goofiness most of the time, Tadashi is surprisingly dependable, so I actually find that they make a good couple. Up until now though, I was a bit uncertain about whether or not Tadashi ever saw Akira as more than a friend, but the flashback showing him confess to her when she was half asleep quickly revealed that he always has. For keeping his feelings bottled up all this time, Tadashi isn’t so different from Yahiro, who was probably the most influential in getting him and Akira together. Speaking of Yahiro, it was first helping Kei and Hikari and now Tadashi and Akira (the latter couple at his own expense), making me wonder who will come along and make him happy. The preview hints that it might be Megumi, but that pairing seems quite odd to me, so I’ll hold off on any premature conclusions for now.
Finally, I’m wondering what the insert song in this episode is, as it wasn’t listed in the credits. I have a thing for well-placed insert songs as they really help set the mood, especially in romantic scenarios, so hopefully it gets released in an upcoming single/soundtrack.
- Hanazono Hikari (華園 光) / Gotou Yuuko (後藤 邑子)
- Takishima Kei (滝島 彗) / Fukuyama Jun (福山 潤)
- Toudou Akira (東堂 明) / Nabatame Hitomi (生天目 仁美)
- Karino Tadashi (狩野 宙) / Shimono Hiro (下野 紘)
- Yamamoto Megumi (山本 芽) / Takagaki Ayahi (高垣 彩陽)
- Yamamoto Jun (山本 純) / Yonaga Tsubasa (代永 翼)
- Tsuji Ryuu (辻 竜) / Horie Kazuma (堀江 一眞)
- Saiga Yahiro (雑賀 八尋) / Taniyama Kishou (谷山 紀章)
- Ushikubo Sakura (牛窪 桜) / Kuwatani Natsuko (桑谷 夏子)
- Nagai Mamoru (長井 まもる) / Matsuo Daisuke (松尾 大亮)
- Kokusen female student A (黒泉女生徒A) / Nishino Youko (西野 陽子)
- Kokusen female student B (黒泉女生徒B) / Nanase Ami (七瀬 亜深)