Hanasaku Iroha – 12
In an unexpected turn of events, the whole idea of a love triangle was destroyed single handedly with one episode. While I feel a little apprehensive about making such a bold statement, I’d have to say that things don’t feel like they’re going the way I thought they originally might have. At least, not for the next few episodes.
As if Ohana had somehow read my mind, everything that’s happened thus far would make a great foundation for a new Japanese drama that takes a different angle on things. I personally wouldn’t have the camera focus on Ohana, but that’s exactly what makes things more interesting. You have the girl with a handful of problems that’s distraught about how to deal with her crush, the cute guy who is focused on the girl who’s not focused on him and fails to notice the girl who’s into him, and the original guy who is so out of the loop that he isn’t too important.
With such a caustic combination of characters fighting for different things, the drama that builds up around them is nearly as bad as their internal drama. Not only does Ohana have to deal with what’s going on around her but Igarashi manages to come out of left field and starts to create a ton of different problems. After throwing her manners out the window in hopes of swaying Ohana’s feelings, it was getting difficult to watch Ohana struggle with what to do. So difficult that I was on the verge of shedding a few tears as I watched Ohana try to push Ko away from her. Can you imagine how bad it’d feel to think of yourself as the bad guy in any situation? The only thing that had me going was watching Ohana exert an amazing amount of willpower to say the things she thought was right to say. I don’t know about you, but I don’t think I’d have to courage to say those things to someone who I really liked. Which is all the more reason Ohana is one of my favorite characters this season!
At the same time, I was caught a little off guard with the sudden switch from relationship problems to Ohana’s family life. Right when Tohru started to really start showing his interest (or was it Minchi being extra jealous?) the entire topic of relationships just disappeared! But to be honest, I’m really excited to see what’s in store for us. As Ohana’s mom started to show off an entirely different side that we haven’t seen yet, I remember that I couldn’t stop smiling after listening to her sound so motherly. Something about watching her actually try to get things straightened up in her life for Ohana’s sake completely changed my entire view of her. A mother who’s trying to make things right between her only child? Yes.