「淋しい熱帯魚」 (Sabishii Nettaigyo)
“Lonely Tropical Fish”
Ask and you shall receive seems to be the case here, as the story is finally starting to string together like I’ve been waiting for. This season, it looks like things are focusing on Arashi and Hajime, who suddenly lose the ability to time slip together after their relationship enters some rocky waters.
Things start off with Sayaka’s ongoing confusion that time travel is some sort of anti-aging machine, a misconception that has hilariously dated back to season one. At this point, everyone’s pretty much given up on trying to explain it to her, while Kaya’s on the verge of smashing her own head against the wall over it. Spoiled raw oysters aside, Yayoi comes up with a brilliant use for their time traveling abilities — instantly pickled food by hiding the containers in Hakobune a few days earlier. Arashi’s idea to do the same with wet laundry isn’t successful though, since her and Hajime decided to shove it in the fridge of all places. During everyone’s complete disregard for the spacetime continuum, Jun’s dwelling over the thought of Arashi and the others disappearing at the end of summer, making her feel sorry that they can’t get attached to anyone and fall in love. However, she’s surprised by Hajime’s faith in and devotion to Arashi, which keeps him completely unfazed even when Yamashiro asks Arashi out on a date.
Surprisingly, Arashi agrees to go without too much thought. While she’s off on her relatively innocent date, Hajime learns the truth from Jun and asks Arashi about it later that night. Arashi explains how they’ll be forgotten after they disappear, leaving any chance of continuing on as-is next summer highly unlikely. Despite this, Hajime swears he’ll never forget her and confesses his feelings, but Arashi stops him part way before he can finish. Rejected, Hajime runs off in tears while Arashi thinks to herself how painful it would be to fall in love with someone only to be forgotten by them. The next day, the two of them act as if nothing happened, but an attempt to time slip together fails.
Somehow, Sayaka’s stupidity with regards to time travel still hasn’t gotten old to me. I just love watching the others more or less facepalm themselves because of how dumb she is. What did surprise me though is how Yayoi is able to connect with practically anyone now. There’s Yamashiro’s dog Josephine, then Sayaka, and Hajime (whom she first lept with in season one). Humour-wise, it was pretty amusing watching everyone’s reaction to Yamashiro telling Arashi that she and the others seem a lot older than they look. Arashi, Kaya, Kanako, and Yayoi were pretty worried about coming off as old grandmas at that point, which they basically are since they’ve been “alive” for well over 60 years now. Sayaka was quick to hop on Yamashiro’s taste in older woman, but unfortunately for her, she only looks the part.
While I’m not sure if they’ll carry this breakdown between Arashi and Hajime till the end of the season, I definitely wouldn’t mind after the semi-serious turn the story has taken. Hajime’s confession wasn’t really that surprising to anyone since Arashi basically knew his feelings all along, but I did like how he manned up when he was put on the spot. It looks like all his lecturing to Jun on how to be a man wasn’t without weight after all. I’m curious where things go from here now that his link to Arashi is severed, but I hope they don’t resolve it too easily at the same time. This has more than enough potential to form some overarching story, so I want to see them do just that.