TARI TARI – 12
「重ねたり 響いたり」 (Omone tari Hibii tari)
“Piling Up and Rippling”
What do you do when someone’s forcing you to give up something you don’t want to? You keep doing it anyway. And true to this spirit, Wakana rallies the rest of the group together in an attempt to have their own White Festival—with or without the support of anyone else. Because who cares if the worst scenario is that they sing their song in an empty gym, it’s about the fond memories of singing with friends on a stage that you can call your own, and of making sure that no matter what happens after you graduate, you’ll all have that moment to think back to and smile.
“if we can sing this song together, we’ll think of each other whenever we hear it, no matter how far we’re scattered.”
And it’s exactly this sentiment, this exposition on friendship and memories, that made me love the K-ON! Movie earlier in the year, and now TARI TARI. And yes, I know some people are tired of the constant emphasis on the above sentiment, but there’s always an exception to the norm that makes a series worth watching regardless, and that’s proper development. And gosh darn does TARI TARI show exactly how to do it this episode (and well, all series pretty much), as we get perhaps the best episode up to date (out of many great, tear-jerking ones) this week, filled with powerful quotes and emotions. And because there are just so many quotes, I’m going to structure this post just a tad differently, by listing each of the major quotes I feel need to be talked about, and what makes them so powerful and important. Let the games begin.
“We’ll remember being invited, and arguing, and getting mad, and laughing, and fighting, and losing, and saying weirding things, and meeting great friends.”
And so, we start off with in chronological order with the above quote, which encompasses the culmination of all the developments through the series. We get a quick summary of all the things they’ve done up until now, the obstacles they’ve traversed together to get to this point, and basically the reasons they’re just such great friends. And not only does it give that feeling of finality that a near final episode should give and shows just how much they’ve been through, it makes us, as viewers realize just how much they’ve gotten us to care about them.
And perhaps what’s lost underneath it all, is the subtle reference to the title as well, as you’ll remember that the TARI in the title corresponds to the -tari form of phrasing, meaning doing things amongst, or with others. Now, look back to the quote about remembering being invited and arguing etc. Looks weird translated isn’t it? Well, that’s because the entire sentence was included terms in the -tari form. Listen closely, and you’ll notice that every sentence in that word ended in “-tari”, and it’s by no means unintentional. Talk about a somewhat subtle touch and reference to top everything off with.
“Is this okay with everyone? We all put a lot of effort into getting ready! So many people were looking forward to it! Maybe this isn’t a bit deal for those who’ll be in big competitions or pursuing professional careers, but some of us don’t have any other stage to stand on!”
Another great quote and reference. Not only does this subtly reference the underlying accusations against Konatsu that she just isn’t taking music seriously and the whole aspect about being professionals versus amateurs, it continues the emphasis on the importance of “having one’s own stage” and also considering the situations of the people around you. There are just things that people take for granted or accept, things that shouldn’t be, and Konatsu really just nails it with this statement. Just because you don’t care, doesn’t mean everyone else doesn’t. And when you’re in a position to do something about it, you’re obligated to do something about it. That’s how I personally feel things should be, and TARI TARI really strikes a cord by saying this quite, which emphasizes this somewhat.
Combined the following quote with the above:
“I don’t want to become the kind of sad adult who blindly follows wrong directions just because they came from above.”
…and in the end, you just can’t help but realize how many additional themes there are in this series, whether intended or not. Because aside from the friendship and memories, there seems to be way more than that here, and that extra thing is a commentary on ways people live your life. Do you want to live just sitting there, being pushed by what life gives you? Or do you want to take things into your own hands? Do you know how much you’re able to influence the people around you even if you don’t intend to? Who are you and what do you want to be? TARI TARI just seems to ask these questions of the viewers… and what’s more amazing, is how it does it in such a way that it doesn’t necessarily force any viewers to favor one view over another. Things like the approach to music, the situation with the school, the series shows both sides of the story, and well… it really is a tale of maturation in the end. See, not only do we get the literal growth of the characters, there’s a more philosophical side to it too… pertaining to the necessity to ask certain questions and to view things from multiple perspectives as we mature and take on more responsibilities.
And perhaps the best indication of TARI TARI not being particularly biased toward one view of doing something, is summarized in this last quote:
“I finished the song due to the advice you gave me… that music should be fun.”
“But that wasn’t enough. The support of my friends was equally important. They encouraged me though my struggles. They’re all so different from me, but they’re honest and determined. We fought, but we also worked together. I know my mother had a friend like that too. Someone to have fun with. Someone to share her worries.”
And the quote just screams out loud how there’s just no one way to do something correctly. Some might do it one way, but some might need more, and it’s just a great overall theme that emphasizes how different people are from another, yet how we can and should be able to work together to achieve goals we couldn’t have otherwise accomplished by ourselves. And last but not least, let’s also mention the Vice-Principal, whose conversation with Wakana serves as the backdrop for this quote, which drew some tears to my eyes as I watched her tough exterior finally crack.
And I don’t know about you, but I’m of the feeling that there have been few, few shows like TARI TARI lately, and it’s just a pity. There’s just that extra, more complex layer here for those that want to delve deeper, and it just complements the basic story, which has been exceptionally well developed on its own right. Sadly though, good things must always come to an end, as the last episode arrives next week. With some tears already from this episode and many of the previous, I won’t be surprised if I’ll be shedding some next episode too. But if there’s one thing I know, I won’t be ashamed, because it’s just been such a great series.