Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu Ni! – 08
「ウチと日本と知らない言葉」 (Uchi to Nippon to Shiranai Kotoba)
“Me, Japan, and Words I Don’t Know!”
After a bunch of hit or miss episodes, I would have to say that this was the best episode of the sequel thus far. I don’t know if I’m the only one who’s dreamed about going to school in Japan, but I’ve never thought about how bad of a culture shock it would be. With a comprehension level on par or worse than a little kid, I couldn’t help but picture myself in Minami’s shoes. As I watched her slowly grow more and more depressed as the days went on, I never thought that a show like Baka Test would be able to get me so emotionally invested.
I’ve always been curious about just what made Minami fall for Akihisa, and I’d have to say that after watching this episode, Minami has a much more compelling reason than Himeji to be interested in Akihisa. After that blunder during her introduction, I was scared that Minami wouldn’t be able to bounce back given that catch-22 she was given. Can you imagine how horrible it must feel to want to make friends, but unable to do so because of a language barrier? But somehow, someway, Akihisa’s attempts to befriend her were almost like a blessing in disguise. Even though he went about it in the worst way possible and even brought out Minami’s feisty personality in the process, his earnest intent had me shedding tears by the end of the episode.
Not only did he use the wrong language and probably wasn’t making things better by repeating the same phrase over and over again, I lost it when Minami finally figured out what Akihisa was saying. I’m not sure what came over me during the last few minutes of the episode, but thinking about Akihisa trying his hardest to figure out how to say a single phrase in a foreign language when his own language skills could use improvement completely moved me. His selflessness completely canceled out his idiocy.
Even though we didn’t get to watch the repercussions of Minami kissing Akihisa right in front of Himeji, this has to be one of the strongest episodes for this show to date. At this point, I don’t care what happens in the future as long as Minami gets to keep Akihisa — since I don’t think there’s a force in the world that’ll stop her from being with him.