Hayate no Gotoku!! 2nd Season – 23, 24
Sakuya turns 15 years old but the episode focused on practically everyone else but her.
Sakuya’s birthday and the “Ferris wheel” scene. Neither were quite what I was expecting, but it seems like we’re finally at the climax of the series. There’s no doubt about it now: episode 25 will be the finale of this second season. While it seems like we’re going to be left with another open-ended conclusion, things have been pretty entertaining along the way. In retrospect, I actually prefer things this way since it leaves the series open to a possible third season. All we have to check for now is some message at the end of next week’s episode indicating that a third season has gotten the green light. There’s a lot of hoping and wishing in that statement, but who knows — I was surprised that the 52 episode first season was popular enough to get this season produced.
With my short spew on the series as a whole out of the way, let’s see what actually happened these past two episodes.
Behold! Student Council Vice President Kasumi Aika, whom I should know already but can’t recall for the life of me.
This much malicious intent from the idea of selling off some school property. Imagine what would happen if you rubbed her the wrong way.
First off, we have the student council vice president Kasumi Aika showing her dark, sadistic, and opportunistic tendencies. Apparently she showed up in the first season as well, but I honestly have no recollection of her at all so this was all new to me. She’s played by Katou Emiri no less (Hiiragi Kagami in Lucky Star) so I thought I would’ve taken notice to her. But then again, I guess that was two years ago and Emiri was just making her big debut.
If anyone ever saw all the stuffed animals in Chiharu’s room, her serious secretary-like cover would be so blown.
This is way beyond a mere interest in cute uniforms. We have a serious obsession/fetish going on here.
I love this pose and overly cute greeting. I wish I knew a girl who secretly hides a cute personality behind a serious one…
…so that I can tease her in situations like this.
Next up, more Harukaze Chiharu (a.k.a. “Haru-san”) whom I’m growing more fond of the more I see her. It’s probably because she’s somewhat of a tsundere, except that her weak, soft, embarrassed side is actually a cheerful, cute uniform-obssessed, secret personality, which if exposed could result in the very breakdown of her character. It’s at her expense, but entirely for my own enjoyment so I loved how Aika realized she was Sakuya’s maid right away. That, and how she made special note of it to use against Chiharu in the future. All this when Chiharu didn’t do anything to get on Aika’s bad side. Oh the hilarity. :)
Sakuya really enjoys a good laugh. And I mean REALLY enjoys.
Too bad Wataru can’t deliver when he’s put on the spot. Cue missing finger part 1.
This is what I love about Sakuya’s character. Childhood friend comes to the rescue. Aww…
You can just sense Wataru’s heart being crushed as Isumi delivers the killing blow. “Your jokes suck Wataru.”
I was a bit surprised how much screentime Wataru got this around. Watching his embarrassed reactions in front of Isumi hasn’t gotten old yet, but having Isumi bluntly tell him that he sucks is a whole new level. If it weren’t for Sakuya comforting him a bit here, he may have gone off to kill himself for real this time. On a separate note, I chuckled at Sakuya’s comment about Wataru being a hero in his past life. I could be totally off with this reference, but Mashin Eiyuuden Wataru immediately came to mind because of Inoue Marina (Wataru) and Nakajima Saki (Saki)’s song on the Hayate no Gotoku! Character COVER CD — “STEP”. Despite how old that Sunrise anime is (aired in April 15, 1988), the opening song is actually quite catchy. Marina and Saki did an awesome cover of it too, which I recommend giving a quick listen to here. Since they’re singing in character, Marina’s using her deeper, boyish voice, which somehow fits perfectly.
You can’t quite put things into perspective without comparing it to the original by a.chi-a.chi though, so let’s take a trip down memory lane shall we?
“STEP” by a.chi-a.chi (Mashin Eiyuuden Wataru OP)
Unexpectedly, Hayate shows Wataru how it’s done by sending the crowd into a riot one joke after another.
Ayumu believes she can win Hayate over with a well prepared cup of coffee. That works… if she drugs him with it.
This is what happens in the real world while Ayumu’s head is in la-la-land.
I don’t recall Ayumu ever reacting to a fantasy about Hayate in a strange manner, but add this time to the list. You just can’t help but stare at her blankly while “it” happens.
Seeing Sakuya’s younger brother (Asato) and sister (Hinata) explains a lot about her personality…
…but when you meet her father, you realize he’s the real cause.
Watching Nagi’s reaction to the sight of Sakuya and her crazy family was a pretty big sign of the things to follow. While I’m not big on the “oh I’m so rich, but so lonely” bit, Nagi has shown a genuine longing for her mother this season. At the same time though, her candidacy as Hayate’s future girlfriend is slipping rapidly. As shown in the opening, it’s as if Nagi’s content with keeping him around as a motherly figure.
Hina never seems to show a lot of skin (e.g. bloomers), but her outfits are always pretty cute.
The outcome that Hina envisions.
On the other hand, our remaining two competitors square off in the climactic showdown of the season! Ayumu vs Hinagiku… START!
“I’ve betrayed you. The truth is, I’m in love with Hayate too!”
So in terms of things not going as expected, 1.) I figured Sakuya’s birthday would have had a lot more to do with her, and 2.) this Ferris wheel confession would have been to Hayate and not Ayumu. I’m not entirely sure why I thought the latter though, but it was probably because of all build-up for this scene from the comments before. In any case, this is a monumental stepping stone going forward in the series; it’s just a shame there isn’t anything lined up anime-wise.
J.C. Staff continues to impress with their take on the series. This scene was one of those moments.
As Ayumu points up at the gigantic Ferris wheel, Hina thinks to herself, “This is where I’m going to die.”
Exactly how they missed a Ferris wheel on the same scale as the Cosmo Clock 21 in Yokohama is beyond me, but watching Hina’s fear of heights is oh-so-amusing. It’s definitely on the same level as Chiharu fearing her secret getting out.
Tomboy-ish pose from Sakuya as she teases Hayate about the “cute” Haru-san.
Ah A-tan. I hope to see more of you animated and voiced by the ever-so-awesome Kawasumi Ayako.
Key tsundere point #32: Keep a tough exterior even when you’re scared shitless. Inner eye? Okay there…
The more you try to deny it, the harder it is when the truth comes out. Hina would be so fun to toy with.
Remember what I was saying about Sakuya’s father being dumb? Leave it up to Konishi Katsuyuki to fill that goofy role.
Hina serenades us with her rendition of the Dango Kyoudai song. An embarrassed tsundere is the best tsundere.
Despite not having a lot of actual scenes this episode, the dialogue pretty much stole the entire show. I was eagerly clinging onto every word between Ayumu and Hinagiku, anticipating exactly how all of this was going to play out.
I thought she was going to confess here. Boy was I relieved when it turned out to be an onii-san fetish. Wait a sec…
We always knew Sakuya had a lot of spunk. Who would’ve thought that she’s got some tsundere in here too.
The best part of Sakuya’s birthday had to have been the scene between her and Hayate where she revealed her “longing desire” to have an older brother. It’s not often we get to see Sakuya put herself in a vulnerable position like this. I’m sure Hayate could’ve done a lot of “damage” by breaking the ice with a joke like Sakuya always wants him to, but he did the better thing by not crushing her delicate maiden heart.
No reaction from Ayumu. “Oh you only like him. I thought you were going to tell me you slept with him already.”
Don’t be fooled. This is Ayumu’s declaration that she’ll homewreck Hina if she ever goes out with Hayate.
“Telling him that I like him first is like losing.” This is why Hina’s potential relationship won’t be going anywhere fast.
So after calming down a fair bit from being tricked into singing, Hina eventually ‘fesses up to being in love with Hayate as well. I honestly had no idea how things would go from there, but I certainly didn’t expect Ayumu to be totally cool about it. At the very least, I figured she would’ve been a little worried about having Hina as her rival. After all, Ayumu had already sensed that Hayate might like Hina in return. I guess she has an edge over the student council president due to the latter’s stubbornness with relationships. On that note, I still find it interesting how girls have to worry about confessing first in Japan, as doing so where I’m from is almost completely out of the question and would be seen as being “desperate”. It’s kind of sad how social norms completely govern how we think and act isn’t it?
Being put on the spot, Hayate version. Cue missing finger part 2.
Actions speak louder than words. Nagi still prefers Maria over Hayate.
As for Nagi, her worries about being alone and having everyone leave her eventually was pretty meager in comparison. It almost wasn’t even worth bringing up, except for the lead in to a possible “Sakuya nude show”.
And with a mutual understanding that they can both go after Hayate, Sakuya’s fireworks break the awkwardness.
Seeing as Chiharu isn’t exactly poor herself anymore, it was ironic to hear her talk about frivolous spending.
What exactly is it that money can’t buy for Aika?
If anything, I was more intrigued by Aika’s comment about how there are some things money can’t buy. Judging by her cough, I suspect that either she or someone close to her is sick or terminally ill. Regardless of what it may be, it has piqued my interest enough to want to see her arc animated.
This would’ve been a decent scene to wrap up the season with, but I’m glad there’s a bit more to come.
So yeah, this latest episode was probably the highlight of the season. If I’m not mistaken, the next and final episode will focus primarily on Nagi and Hayate home alone with our pigtailed ojou-sama sick in bed. Will this be Nagi’s opportunity to regain some ground against Ayumu and Hina? Perhaps, but it doesn’t change the fact that we need a 3rd season!