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Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata ♭ – 09 »« Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata ♭ – 07

Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata ♭ – 08

「フラグを折らなかった彼女」 (Furagu o Ora Nakatta Kanojo)
“The Girl Who Didn’t Break the Flag”

‘Please give me a second chance to make you happy.’

I know Megumi was cranky about how thick Tomoya was this episode, but that’s really as close to a confession as any anime harem protagonist ever gets, so I think he should get points for trying, at least. And perhaps Megumi knows that too. The two were never actually ‘together’, but this is the part of the romantic comedy where, post-break-up, the protagonist has to make a huge romantic gesture to win back his female co-lead—or the part of the play where Marlon Brando yells for his Stella. And it works, because Megumi eventually takes her de facto husband back in from the cold, so no matter what Megumi says, I’d like to think it’s more than just her missing her time with Blessing Software. After all, at some point Tomoya’s got to do something right.

I’m glad the two are back together, partially because they have such great chemistry, but also because Tomoya really is nothing without Megumi. She actively makes him a better person. As I’m sure is obvious to all of you already, ‘How to Raise a Boring Heroine’ is not about deficiencies in the heroine at all, but in the ‘hero’. I mean, we can’t really keep calling Megumi ‘bland’, can we? Was this not an episode to remind us of her emotional range? Sure, it may seem out of character for Megumi, usually cool as tempered steel, to break into tears or lose her temper, but the fact that we can talk about breaking character means she has character in the first place. And so, when looking at those scenes, we don’t think, ‘Oh, she’s a crybaby character’ or, ‘Oh, she’s an angry character.’. Rather, after a season and a half of development, we can note, ‘Oh, that’s what it takes to make her cry.’ and ‘Oh, that’s what it takes to make her angry.’. It’s almost as if Saekano is training us to judge a character’s behaviour on a case by case basis to gradually build their personality, rather than lump all their actions under the banner of an archetype.

But you don’t need me to tell you that, because this is also the episode where Saekano explains explicitly what it’s been trying to do. With Utaha off-stage right now, it falls on Tomoya to be Maruto-sensei’s mouthpiece, and since Saekano is an anime about making a game about itself… well, the rest is obvious. It seems rather early for Saekano to be laying out its thesis, and indeed, this could well have been the final episode. The main duo get back together, they have a chat about the future and their ambitions, we get a holistic look at some themes in the story and what has been achieved, then drop the curtain. If this were one of those shorter adaptations, or just a promotion for the light novel as many adaptations have the misfortune of being today, this episode would have been a good place to cut off. Fortunately, this is Saekano, and one of the things I enjoy most about Maruto-sensei’s writing is that he remembers his loose ends and makes sure they’re utilised, so we can’t stop here. We noted, long ago, that Utaha had hijacked Tomoya’s pet project, and now Tomoya is finally going to correct that. And we noted, at the end of the first season, that Utaha warned Megumi about getting friendly with Eriri, and now she may well be the final boss. It’s comforting to know that those in charge of an anime one loves has put as much thought into it as we have.

So yeah, I would have actually been quite satisfied if the series ended right here. But Saekano seems to have higher ambitions, which is rather exciting. I dare say the episodes have been getting even better recently, so I look forward to what pinnacle may still be in store.

June 2, 2017 at 8:24 am
18 comments »
  • June 2, 2017 at 9:20 amsonicsenryaku

    The growth on megumi has been stupendous. This is what i like to see from Saekano

  • June 2, 2017 at 9:51 amPurpleBomber

    Why do I still want to punch Tomoya even after he finally figured it out and apologized? Though I guess that is the joke of the episode with Tomoya finally understanding why Megumi was mad, only to trot out that stereotypical dribble of a proposal right after. Oh well… You’re the vice president now Megumi, you signed up for this.

  • June 2, 2017 at 9:52 amqwert

    This episode was a pure Megumi overdose and I loved every minute of it. It was beautiful.

  • June 2, 2017 at 11:33 amAngelus

    OK, they’re alone in the house together, so why do they sleep in the same room when every other room is open? Maybe it’s a cultural thing, but to me, if a boy and girl go as far as sharing a room when there were plenty of alternatives (so not things like Tomoya and Utaha in the hotel in S1) then a boundary has been crossed.

    • June 2, 2017 at 5:32 pmaoyu

      I think it’s Megumi’s way of showing that he trusts Aki-kun. Also, it’s not the first time she slept there.

    • June 3, 2017 at 1:03 amDorali

      I think that’s the point. Not to mention that Tomoya himself is pretty nonchalant about his personal space, Megumi and Tomoya have built up that kind of relationship from the very start. They pretty much have become so trusting of each other that they don’t hesitate to sleep in the same room, shop for underwear together, and other old married couple things. A big part of this episode was to show that, even though two months have passed, they’re still close to each other.

  • June 2, 2017 at 11:58 amVelvet Scarlantina

    http://randomc.net/image/Saenai%20Heroine%20no%20Sodatekata/Saenai%20Heroine%20no%20Sodatekata%20Flat%20-%2008%20-%20Large%2027.jpg

    For a moment I thought Kato would hit him with the console but this scene really summed up her face palms into one epic “go to your corner” line

    • June 4, 2017 at 1:07 amDyne

      This scene was just like in season 1 where Tomoya was lecturing Megumi about gal games only now it is reversed where Megumi lectures Tomoya about real girls (herself). It’s a nice touch and really adds up to their chemistry.

  • June 2, 2017 at 3:58 pmPayback

    Watching this and Tsuki ga Kirei in the same day is killing me, twice-over and tossing the corpse into a roaring fire.

  • June 2, 2017 at 4:43 pmMaou

    http://randomc.net/image/Saenai%20Heroine%20no%20Sodatekata/Saenai%20Heroine%20no%20Sodatekata%20Flat%20-%2008%20-%20Large%2021.jpg

    I feel like watching, an old married couple where the husband is overly passionate and a calming wife. I already can see when they have a daughter..tomoya will always complain about his daughter’s boyfriend while megumi will jabbed tomoya for having many girls staying over in the past.

  • June 2, 2017 at 5:01 pmSouma

    I bet the next meeting either utaha or megumi will make a jab that the title will change to “how to raise a donkan protagonist”

  • June 3, 2017 at 10:34 amBakapooru

    <a href="http://randomc.net/image/Saenai%20Heroine%20no%20Sodatekata/Saenai%20Heroine%20no%20Sodatekata%20Flat%20-%2008%20-%20Large%2009.jpg What does this look mean?

    I’m a little bit confused here.

    What does that look mean? Sorry, about the link. I can’t figure out how to embed the screenshot.

    • June 3, 2017 at 10:36 amBakapooru

      Ha! I see… the embed did work. It still doesn’t look right, though.

    • June 3, 2017 at 1:57 pmqwert

      It’s a look of disgust/contempt.

      Because Aki had just asked if the real reason she was mad, rather than the actual reason that she was pissed that he didn’t trust/rely on her enough since she cared about the game as much as he did, was because she’d fallen in love with him and she was just jealous of his spending time with Eriri.

  • June 3, 2017 at 6:14 pmConspiracy theorist

    Megumi really is the best waifu. Patient and enduring.

  • June 4, 2017 at 5:38 amJuan

    Maruto really is the best writer of this Genre. WA2 and Saekano are probably the 2 best written “romance” be it drama or romcom to come out of the industry in ages.

    This ep was really a breath of fresh air and sweet in a very refreshing kind of way.

  • June 4, 2017 at 8:56 amaprub

  • June 4, 2017 at 8:57 amaprub

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