「卒業アルバム！」 (Sotsugyou Arubamu!)
Guys or girls, bangs are a part of your hair you never want to mess up, especially the day before high school graduation photos. In Yui’s case, she should probably be grateful she didn’t have a prom and much more upscale photographs as per western schools, or take out an eye when she sneezed with those scissors in her hand. While the others may have been on the edge of their seats watching her cut her own bangs the first time around, I was just as surprised as they were from the fine job she did. I really didn’t want to see Yui have messed up bangs because I’ve been there myself (and not of my own doing), but I really couldn’t stop laughing at Azusa and Mio fainting at the sight of Yui’s childish cut when she gave it another go to disastrous results. I’m just glad I wasn’t in their shoes because I really wouldn’t know what to tell Yui. I seriously wouldn’t have the heart to lie straight to her face like they tried to do, only to fail miserably. It just had to turn out that she has a complex with her forehead too, so Ritsu’s suggestion to tie her hair back didn’t go over so well either.
In all honesty, it didn’t look that bad once Mugi parted it to one side, but it still had a childish look to it since there wasn’t an even lining across like Mio’s and the cut was fairly high too. It definitely didn’t give off the same feel as the styles she was experimenting with in the morning, any of which would’ve made for a much sexier picture. In fact, I was surprised at how much more attractive Yui looked like just small changes to her hair. Azusa wasn’t too bad with her hair down either, while Ui was the ultimate dark horse since her hair’s always tied up. The scare she gave Azusa by changing to her sister’s hairstyle was absolutely priceless, and seriously left me wondering why Yui didn’t just get Ui to stand in for her for the graduation photo. Aside from Yui and Ui, no one would have to know either. I’d be willing to be that no one would be able to tell either, including Mio, Ritsu, Mugi, and Azusa, unless they were specifically told. Ui did fool everyone once before, so a picture should be an absolute piece of cake to her. They’re basically twins anyway. The real loss of course would be the sentimental value of Yui actually being in her graduation photo, but if she really wanted to return to the day before, Ui was her easy out.
I’m not sure how much time supposedly passed between this episode and the next, but Yui’s bangs look like they’ve grown back to their usual length already. However, this graduation photo episode did serve as a means for Kyoto Animation to showcase their subtle yet impeccable ability at animating hair, which can be easily overlooked if someone isn’t making a conscious effort to take notice of it. The live performances at the school festival last time were good examples of it, whereas this haircut incident went on to reaffirm that notion. Story-wise, if there’s one promising thing to take away from all of this, it’s that all the girls are planning on getting into the same all-girls university upon graduation (…probably the one Mugi’s planning to attend by the sound of it). Mio even passed up an opportunity to get into almost any school she wants just to be with the others, which definitely helps in terms of seeing some sort of university/college years sequel involving HTT. Whether or not Kakifly has one in store at the moment is anyone’s guess, but I’d say it’s a worthwhile venture if he, TBS, Kyoto Animation, and Pony Canyon want to make another twenty some million USD off of K-ON merchandise alone.