– Ikuto and Suzu arrive at the entrance to the cave of kairyuu-sama; Ayane follows them in with Solid Snake stealth, minus the cardboard box
– After a rather dramatic slip and slide sequence by Ayane, she attempts to wishjack IkuSuzu by going to see kairyuu-sama first
– Ayane’s plan ultimately backfires as her close encounter with the water dragon has her taking off a large portion of the dragon’s whisker. Shaved dragon = unhappy dragon
– The entrance to the cave collapses after they run out; back to the island, but at least Ayane has something to show for it
– Unable to get back to kairyuu-sama, Ikuto tries his hand at rowing into a bunch of whirlpools again. Suzu lets him go and prevents anyone from trying to stop him
– But not so fast, Suzu can’t let her man go just like that. Don’t go~~
– Both get sucked down the whirlpool, but Sashimi rescues Suzu. So where’s Ikuto?
– Suzu dives back down, into kairyuu-sama’s cave. Doesn’t work too well as she’s about to get sucked in
– Rin fishes her up, followed by Ayane jumping in and reattaching the decapitated whisker. Kairyuu-sama not mad anymore (think Nausicaa red/blue eyes)
– Cue corny “we’re all your friends, don’t try to do everything by yourself!” chat with Suzu
– Ikuto wakes up with some of Machi’s voodoo help – he’s in some weird ocean that’s strangely calm
– A boat of burly men row up. Eh, men?? Guess who’s on the boat with them – yep, its Misaki. She’s really damn cute and her voice is awesome
– Apparently she washed up on some island named “Airantou” populated by only men. They’re all really nice and the food is really good, so she wants to stay with them a bit longer. More on this later
– She asks Ikuto to join her – but holds a weak hand compared to a Suzu montage. Sry, I’m going back, Misaki, as he hops aboard the yellow inflatable and heads straight over (into) the whirlpool
– And washes up on stage, with a flustered and extremely relieved Suzu there to greet him
– And so we start once again with the big hide and see tournament, winner gets to take home Ikuto. Full circle – works nice here
– New character that talks slow and isn’t very genki (the one that looks like Misaki) is given some screen time with 30 seconds left in the episode
So how was that? All in all, I’d say it was a middle-of-the-road series that never got that bad and instead had some very bright spots along the way. As with many 26 episode series based on something with no plot, the episodes around the middle got boring and repetitive, but the studio really picked it up near the end and gave some excellent episodes – the two part beniyasha story was quite entertaining, as were the final two episodes.
As for the characters, they might have seemed generic but seemed interesting enough nonetheless – the thing is, the most generic and least interesting character was the main girl. Others will disagree with me on this, but I felt what made this series good was when there was some off-the-wall craziness that characters like Ayane, Machi, Chikage, and even Meimei provided, and all that just went emo when Suzu was the focus. There was, however, enough of a balance between that craziness and the Suzu friendship / romance side of things for the people who’d rather watch this show for that.
If I were to pin one thing wonky about this show, it’d be the inconsistent animation quality. The color palette was always rich and vibrant as expected of a tropical island, but sometimes there were these glaring rough patches of either choppy animation or weak character detail that would just spoil the entire episode for me.
I could get into the “what-ifs” of this show and how good it could’ve been, but suffice to say that it wasn’t a bad ride; started off quite good, then got rather boring, and had a great finish. Perhaps a 13 episode series may have been better suited?