Kobato. – 22
After having a dream of the place she wants to go, Kobato heads to the nursery to help Sayaka clean and pack up. Sayaka reassures her that she’s fine with all this and has no regrets because she made the decision on her own. Kiyokazu, on the other hand, doesn’t show up to help and heads instead to his various jobs. When Kobato tries to talk to him that night, he refuses to go to the nursery and tells her to throw all of his stuff away. However, the next day, Kobato sees Kiyokazu leaving the nursery after having spent a moment in front of the piano, causing her to worry about him. When the day comes for the nursery to be torn down, Kiyokazu still doesn’t go. Kobato and Sayaka do go to see the nursery’s final moments though, as do some of their former students.
Afterward, Sayaka asks Kobato to help support Kiyokazu because she feels that he had been died down by the nursery. She wants Kobato to tell him to do what he wants for his own sake and to be by his side. On the way home, Kobato runs into Chise and Chiho and learns that Kiyokazu was in an accident. Fortunately he only hurt his arm, and he’s met on the way out of the hospital by Doumoto and Kobato. Doumoto doesn’t accompany them home, giving Kobato the chance to try to talk to Kiyokazu, but he doesn’t want her feeling sorry for him and calls her a nuisance. He then walks off on his own, leaving Kobato feeling a pain in her chest. Her attention, however, is soon turned to a flying rabbit Ushagi which delivers her a flower. Ioryogi explains that it means that she has only until the next full moon to collect the rest of the konpeitou that she needs, and he tries to beg Ushagi for more time, but it refuses.
For once, I actually have no major complaints about an episode of Kobato. It got off to a great start with the dream sequence that featured a wonderful piano version of Kobato’s song, and this picture seemed to suggest something along the lines of young Kobato being the daughter of a previous incarnation of Kiyokazu. Incidentally, I have a new appreciation for the OST after finally having gotten a chance to sit down and listen to it recently. There’s more good songs on there than I realized.
Anyway, the bulk of the episode then did a good job showing Kiyokazu’s state of mind and building up how Kobato and his relationship was affected by the nursery’s closing. I thought they might try to pull something like having Kiyokazu be in a coma until Kobato made the decision to sacrifice her wish for him, but instead he was fine and just more pissed off than usual, which served to highlight Kobato’s growing feelings for him. They also put in some hints about how what happened in the past and how Ioryogi met Kobato (showing her for the first time without her hat), and it was nice to see him show how much he cares about Kobato at the end. The ultimatum sets us up for the final two episodes, both of which will air next week, and hopefully they’ll tell us clearly where Kobato wants to go or what she wants to do. That and her identity are probably tied in to how she hasn’t taken off her hat in the real world, and based on the preview it looks like she finally will.