「ユウサリ中央（セントラル） 夜想道13番地 郵便館BEE-HIVE」 (Yuusari Chuuou (Sentoraru) Yasoukyoku Michi 13 Banchi Yuubinkan BEE-HIVE)
“Yuusari Central Nocturne Street #13 Post Office BEE-HIVE”
Damn, this show is such a tease. Just as I start settling into an episode, it ends the very next minute. I wish this series was already done airing so that I could marathon the whole thing in a day or two, but I guess that means they’re doing something right here. Since I’m watching a lot of shows concurrently, I rarely have the urge to see the next episode of a series right away — there’s always the next episode of another series I can watch in the meantime. However, Tegami Bachi has an odd way of keeping me enticed. While watching the steady character growth of Lag and Niche is interesting enough, the story drops little hints along the way to foreshadow things to come.
Early on in the episode, Connor’s ominous response to Lag’s enthusiastic desire to meet Sylvette alone kept me watching attentively. After that, I was eagerly hoping to hear about what happened to her and Gauche, making the rest of the episode just fly by. Ultimately, the topic wasn’t brought up again until the end when Zazie referred to Gauche as a former Bee, but the introduction of Aria, reappearance of Largo as the master of the Bee-Hive, and Lag’s examination kept me distracted enough to not even mind. They did an awesome job of giving me things to look forward to and letting that feeling linger around for a bit by delving into another part of the story before finally getting back to it. I’m not sure whether this is accredited to good directing, screenplay, or both, but there’s never a dull moment this way and pacing is never an issue.
This week, we see Lag’s arrival to Yuusari Central where the Bee-Hive post office is located. After crossing the water surface level Bifrost bridge (watched by the Signal/Signaless twins), accepting Niche as his dingo, diving into the water to save Steak, and meeting up with Connor again, Lag finally arrives at the Letter Bee post office for his exam. There, he’s surprised to run into Aria Link (Koshimizu Ami), who now serves as the sub-master (i.e. vice president) of the Bee-Hive. However, him and Niche are even more surprised by the fact that Largo Lloyd, the rare animal collector from before, is actually the master of the whole place. Once everything’s cleared up, Lag is dispatched on his examination of delivering an actual letter to the town of Raspberry Hill. Taking the test with him is one Macky Gee, who is overconfident in his abilities despite lacking any understanding on how to use a shindan and 22 others failing before him. While there is no time limit for the delivery, an encounter with Gaichuu is guaranteed on route.
During the eventual run-in with a centipede-like Gaichuu, a Glen Keith, Macky proves to be completely useless and can’t fire a shindan for the life of him. Luckily, Lag and Niche arrive in time to take out the Gaichuu, saving the examiner Zazie (Kishio Daisuke) and his black panther dingo Wasiolka from stepping in themselves. At Raspberry Hill, the recipient isn’t happy about the muddied up letter Lag delivered and praises Macky’s work instead. Zazie arrives shortly after though, and with the help of Lag’s shindan, reveals how Macky forged a clean copy of his letter to make up for the one he muddied up as well. As the examiner, Zazie deems Macky unfit to be Letter Bee and asks for his shindan gun back, but praises Lag’s abilities and speedy delivery, which rivals the record time for exam takers. Zazie adds that he’s actually the top record holder now that Gauche Suede is no longer a Letter Bee, leaving Lag in disbelief.
Back to what I was saying about keeping me enticed by foreshadowing things to come: what the hell happened to Gauche (and Sylvette) these past five years? Based on the preview, Lag will meet up with Sylvette next time and probably answer that question, but waiting another week before finding out sucks! Also, it looks like we’ll hear more about Aria’s past with Gauche, which she’s reminded of by Lag’s silver hair and sepia-colored eyes — the same Albisian traits as Gauche.