Suzumiya Haruhi 2009 – 20 (The Sighs of Suzumiya Haruhi I)
After the athletic festival in which the SOS Brigade wins a relay race thanks mostly to Yuki’s surprising speed, Haruhi sets her sights on the upcoming culture festival. Unhappy with what her and Kyon’s class is doing, she starts brainstorming and finds out that Mikuru’s class is doing a yakisoba cafe, Itsuki’s is putting on a play, and Yuki’s is doing fortune-telling. Haruhi ultimately announces though that the SOS Brigade will put on a screening of their own movie for the culture festival, and it all stems from how she saw a bad movie the previous night and thought that she could do better. She’s already thought up a script, and her goal is to win the festival’s best event poll so that the student council recognizes them as a club. As for production costs, Haruhi plans to use the literature club’s budget thanks to Yuki.
The next day, Kyon arrives in the club room to find that Haruhi has already assigned roles for everyone. Mikuru and Itsuki are the female and male leads while Yuki plays a supporting character, and Kyon himself is supposed to do all the technical and labor-intensive work. Haruhi then drags Kyon and Mikuru along to go get equipment and props from potential sponsors. Their first stop is an electronics store, and after a discussion with the store manager, Haruhi emerges with a video camera. She doesn’t explain exactly how she convinced the guy, but once Haruhi does the same at another store, Kyon figures out that it has something to do with how she’s pointing at Mikuru each time. Haruhi is thus able to procure some toy weapons for the action scene, and she has Kyon hold onto everything for the time being.
Thanks to Endless Eight for eight weeks, I had a very weird feeling while watching this episode. I had gotten so used to each character’s exact mannerisms in the Endless Eight arc that I had forgotten how they interacted with each other normally. This episode thus served as a good reminder and as a refreshing change of pace. As I said earlier, it was mostly a set-up episode for the Mikuru movie/episode which we’re all familiar with, and, knowing what the final product will be like, it was interesting seeing how everything came together. There was also the athletic festival scene at the beginning that was amusing thanks to Yuki, so overall I thought this was a decent episode. If you hate KyoAni and/or this series thanks to the previous eight weeks, then this episode alone probably won’t make you significantly better about it, but the material might be a good start. In any case, since they’re still going chronologically, the next few weeks should be more of how the movie was made and then finally episode 00 itself.