「中多紗江編 最終章 コイビト」 (Nakata Sae-hen Saishuushou – Koibito)
“Nakata Sae Final Chapter – Lovers”
Sae may have looked really innocent in the wedding dress she sewed and wore for the Best Couple Contest, but the black one with frills, a choker, full-length gloves, and stockings that Miya picked out for her date with Junichi totally trumped it. I just wish they showed her taking off her pink coat to reveal that outfit underneath for even more impact. In retrospect, it was probably better they didn’t, because Sae looked unbelievably cute already and the sight her giving a semi-undressing tease would’ve tipped the scale into lustful territory (…for me anyway). However, her zettai ryouiki from behind did provide more sex appeal than I was expecting, so my thoughts had already drifted that way, much like Junichi’s. It’s just too bad Sae didn’t wear that outfit to the competition. If she did, I don’t think Hibiki and Haruka would have taken first place from her and Junichi. You can’t fight the glamorous body this time around Haruka! Your arc is over!
In comparison, the rest of the episode leading up to their second place finish in the competition was actually pretty innocent. The stopover at the Tyrolean cafe where Sae wanted to eat a ridiculous-sized banana parfait with Junichi provided the more lighthearted side of things, during which our deceivingly reliable protagonist was surprisingly respectful for a change. The fact that his traumatic heart-broken past was brought up once more helped in that regard, since Junichi finally admitted that he’s starting to think of Sae as something more than a junior. While his questionable training methods were still full of “glamorous body” intent as far as I’m concerned, mention of his trauma and fear of rejection did make it apparent that he didn’t see Sae as a potential girlfriend before. As such, it I think it’s safe to say that Sae fell for her useless senior first, even though he did man up and confess to her first in their private box at the movie theater. Their first kiss together after Sae wept a tear of joy seemed like a nice way to wrap up that scene; however, her “I’m so happy” line that made Junichi’s heart explode proved to be even better. what a knockout!
I probably could have done without Umehara’s somewhat sad behavior with his oversized inflatable tuna Toroko, though I did enjoy seeing Kaoru and Keiko laughing their asses off. The addition of the English-speaking director who motivated Junichi was notable too, but only in the sense that he was played by Michael Rivas of Angel Beats-fame. I honestly thought “TK?” when he spoke, so that probably marked the first time I’ve ever recognized an English voice actor by ear in anime. In any case, despite the time skip between their amusement park date to the founder’s festival and Christmas, I felt this arc wrapped up almost as nicely as Kaoru’s one. The air of innocence was what really added to the sweetness of it all, which was appropriately followed up by Junichi’s promotion from instructor to cameraman/director. (“Appropriately” considering the direction of this arc.) Oddly enough, I was actually happy to see Sae in a full-size penguin suit rather than a scantily clad one, just to differentiate herself from Haruka’s kinky roleplay. Incidentally, Junichi did say that Sae’s cuter than Haruka, which is the first time one of the girls has been directly compared to another in terms of attractiveness.
Next time, it’s the start of Nanasaki Ai’s arc and the one I’ve been waiting for the most. There’s just something about her practical attitude that I love. This of course includes how she wears her swimsuit underneath her school uniform and teases Junichi with it. An ending theme sung by Yukana should be good too.