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Natsuiro Kiseki – 08

「ゆううつフォートリップス」 (Yuuutsu Fou Torippusu)
“Melancholy For Trips”

This episode was aptly named, but let me suggest an alternative: Mizukoshi Saki no Yuuutsu. Not that I can blame Saki for making these kinds of faces. Though the girls decided to just visit the island this time, the parallels between now and the next time she’ll go there – when she moves there for good – are obvious and depressing, at least to someone like Saki who doesn’t want to move. Watching her look back wistfully, and snap awake after having bad dreams left me feeling as off kilter as I expect Saki herself felt. I’ll be the first to admit that Natsuiro Kiseki hasn’t always exhibited the most adroit of storytelling, but I thought juxtaposing Saki’s melancholy with the silly antics of her friends (especially Yuka) was done quite well. To feel alone in a crowd…I can understand that.

This episode made me wonder about something. Why is it that, when there’s a metaphorical axe hanging over the story in other shows (like Saki’s imminent move is here), it can be annoying or even painful, but that’s not the case with this show? Perhaps I’m growing older, wiser, or perhaps I’ve just properly set my expectations for this slice-of-life show, but Saki’s eventual departure is only now starting to worry me as the time to deal with it comes ever closer. Anyone else feel the same way? Though I’m not even sure if I’m making any sense!

Then there’s the big rock. As the elephant in the room that might just solve Saki’s problem – if they dare to use it for such a thing – I was surprised when Yuka asked them to use it to cure her motion sickness, and the others treated this as a legitimate possibility. Until that moment, I had assumed that they needed to be touching the big rock for it to work, but then again, why not? Who’s to say it’s not somehow linked to these four girls, regardless of where they are? This brings up interesting possibilities of the girls using the big rock’s power to bridge the gap between them, even when Saki moves. I don’t think that will be the case, but still, it’s a possibility. Hurm…

Digressions aside, the other really interesting part of this episode was the final scene on the deck between Saki and Natsumi. They were really smacking the “Yuri Subtext” gong pretty hard in that scene, what with Natsumi saying she was going to tell Saki’s dad not to take her away, and crying as she went into the “Beacause, I…”. I reeeeeeally want to know what she was saying…and by the looks of it, I’m not the only one. Ohoho!

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – #NatsuiroKiseki Ep8 should have been named “Mizukoshi Saki no Yuuutsu”, though Saki is really a better Kyon than a Haruhi. Hmmm… #Haruhi

Random thoughts:

  • Rin continues to be my favorite character for stealth cuteness. There’s nothing better than a contented Rin! Other than a glomped-by-Yuka Rin, of course, but Sunrise cheaped out on the animation budget for that scene this week. Cheapskates!
  • I thought the insert song did a good job of adding a wistful edge to what would have otherwise been light-hearted traveling scenes. I’m not sure if it’s something I’d listen to by itself, though. I guess I’ll find out whenever the full version comes out.
  • I am excited for next week. So excited.



May 25, 2012 at 6:27 pm
  • May 25, 2012 at 6:32 pmstarss

    Good dammit, Natsumi! You’re gonna make me…. *sniff*!

    • May 26, 2012 at 9:15 amJohn Hayabusa

      If it was not for Yuka, Natsumi and Saki would have been an official couple. But I guess Yuka is saving it for the ending. Go, Natsumi! Follow your heart!

      Rin is just as cute as ever! HHHHNNNNGGG!!! Darn you, Yuka! You are one lucky cheerful girl!

  • May 25, 2012 at 6:47 pmfragb85

    Interrupted love confession! That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

  • May 25, 2012 at 7:05 pmn0216332

    when i was watching this.. i just knew this would be one of the screen caps >:)


  • May 25, 2012 at 7:16 pmFencedude

    I’d really like to see someone come up with a plausible ending to that sentence other than the words “love you”.

    The expressions on their faces were heartbreaking, especially Saki’s. She knew what Natsumi was trying to say, and how if she said it, everything would change for them.

  • May 25, 2012 at 7:18 pmQwert

    Really wish the dips in animation quality weren’t quite so obvious lately.

    Sticks out like a sore thumb when suddenly heads are misshapen and mouths come off at all the wrong angles.

    • May 25, 2012 at 8:13 pmKnillinux

      Yeah.. I hate to say it, but the animation was absolutely terrible this week. The faces were so distorted in every possible way throughout the entire episode. It got to the point where I found myself completely avoiding looking at the screen, and just started taking quick glances to see what the subtitles were…

      I really want to keep loving this show, but when the unique art style of anime is one of the main ways I connect to the characters and one of the main reasons I watch these types of shows at all, this kind of lack in quality really takes a toll.

  • May 25, 2012 at 8:28 pmstarss

    Not everyone can make Oreimo, but would it kill animators to really study models sheets?

  • May 25, 2012 at 11:14 pmAnimesetsuna

    “There’s nothing I can do.”

  • May 26, 2012 at 12:38 amJ-Luke

    “D-Don’t get me wrong! I-I’m not doing this for you, you know…”

  • May 26, 2012 at 5:05 amKinny Riddle

    Yes, Natsumi, search your yuri feelings, you know it to be true: You know you can’t live without Saki by your side. :)

    LOL at Yuka and Rin casually attempting to unhook their undergarment under their shirts… in public. Are girls really more shameless than we think them to be?

    The last scene with Yuka stripping to her bikini was kind of wasted, as it only covered less than 2 minutes. Makes me wonder if we’ll ever get a proper obligatory beach episode at all.

    • May 27, 2012 at 8:01 amStilts

      Come on, this is Sunrise we’re talking about here. Have faith! :3

  • May 26, 2012 at 5:20 amThe Moondoggie

    I dunno how to react to this show anymore :( It’s all cute and yuri-ish and my goggles are broken again :(

    • May 26, 2012 at 3:52 pmJohn Hayabusa

      This is the 20th time that my yuri goggles got busted again. The quality was bad but at least that almost-love confession was great.

      • May 27, 2012 at 5:16 pmThe Moondoggie

        I was half expecting her to say after the “watashi”:

        “watashi wa…. anata o…. aishiteirukara!!!!”

        SQUEE LEVEL OVER 9000!

  • May 26, 2012 at 5:34 amdustshadow

    My poor melancholic golden girl… But Natsumi is right of course, growing up also means sometimes you have to make a stand, instead of going along with what everyone expects of you. Which was a nice change of pace, because the other girls usually think of cool/intelligent/beautiful Saki as the mature example to follow.
    Also, I did like how they put the excitement of four girls on their first travels alone against Saki’s melancholy.

    There are two things though that still elude me:
    - I don’t think any Japanese will refer to the Izu Islands as Tokyo, even though they are technically within city limits; so I’m gessing Saki misled her friends on purpose, but why?
    - I also don’t get Rin’s remark about the mirrors at midnight which scared Natsumi

    Next week: a beach/onsen episode or are they trolling us again?

    • May 27, 2012 at 7:52 amGreg

      – I also don’t get Rin’s remark about the mirrors at midnight which scared Natsumi

      She probably told Natsumi some ghost story with mirrors.

      • May 27, 2012 at 5:21 pmThe Moondoggie

        When you put yourself between two mirrors at midnight, it was said that:

        a. A ghost of a dead bishie girl will get your soul
        b. You get to see your soulmate.

    • May 27, 2012 at 8:05 amStilts

      True, as you grow up you do have to learn to take a stand…but they’re not grown ups. They’re middle school students. Hate to say it, but Saki wanting to stay in the city just because her friends are there is understandable, but separating herself from her family to do it would be childish. The truly adult thing to do would be to go, work hard to keep her friendship with the girls, and meet up again when they all go to university.

  • May 26, 2012 at 5:36 ammac65

    Am I the only one that believes Yuka should have tried the bathing suit on just to make absolutely
    sure that it was too small
    before running out and buying a new one? These are tough economic times -
    just sayin’.

    Animation quality was sad – if it wasn’t for the hair colors, I’m not sure I’d be able to tell the girls apart
    (except by their voices) just by their faces. It’s a nice series, but Sphere deserves better animation quality, IMHO.

    I like the story – if that wasn’t an example of an interrupted confession, then I don’t know what is.
    So this brings a third possibility, the 1st two are that they all move or, she (and her parents) stay;
    the third is that just Saka stays with Natsumi until she finishes school. I think this may be a
    real possibility because of the time in this episode spend showing her father’s sensitivity to
    her feelings. But who knows…

    I also thought it pretty unusal to allow four young girls to take such a long trip alone, in the first place,
    and even with that, no check-in calls to any parent…!

    I like a series that presents multiple equally plausible endings (don’t forget the rock provides
    unexpected solutions to wishes), and this series is doing a good job so far.

  • May 26, 2012 at 8:55 amSerapita

    You’re not the only one Stilts, you’re not the only one…

    Anyway, since Saki doesn’t want to move and their family are good friends, why not just leave Saki with Natsumi’s family until she finished the school at least, like Natsumi suggested? It fixes all the problems.

    • May 26, 2012 at 11:05 pmStilts

      Because then Saki’s family will never see her, and she won’t see them. That’s kind of important to many families!

  • May 26, 2012 at 7:39 pmpetitorenji

    When this series started, I was expecting Saki to leave in, perhaps, episode two. That’s obviously not the case, and I’m actually wondering at which episode will she actually leave, or even leave at all. I also wonder if there’ll be an explanation to how the rock works. But since this is one of those slice-of-lives, I’m not having high expectations about that.

  • May 27, 2012 at 6:16 pmMM

    face against the screen towards the end of the episode. This is really getting a debate between a slice of life and another genre. :/. Not that i am complaining but its so hard not to question or think of that way. :P

  • May 28, 2012 at 4:23 pm1Lau

    The characters were drawn terribly at times this week
    Yuka looks like Popeye without the smoking pipe