「アキラハズカシ」 (Akira Hazukashi)
“Akira, That’s Embarrassing”
It’s almost as if writers this season are having the time of their lives scripting fake-outs and parodies in their premiere episodes. Well in Sora’s case, her tease had me thinking that Haruka should have responded with, “Oh I’ll size you up all right.” Needless to say, he didn’t pull through for us because he was just as speechless as we were last time. In terms of providing a hook in the first episode, I must admit it worked wonders though. In comparison, this episode toned down the “Haru love” dramatically, with Nao being one of the few girls seen blushing helplessly when she was put shoulder to shoulder with him by fellow classmate/friend Nakazato Ryouhei (Nakakuni Takurou). What that translates to in my mind is a bait and switch by the writers to throw us off and keep us guessing what direction this adaptation will take.
Out of all the girls, I’ve taken a liking to Sora the most thus far (oh why do I always pick the emo ones?), but Akira’s easygoing and feisty personality proved to be a breath of fresh air. This includes her getting close to Haru and making him blush for a change, as well as helping other students with resewing buttons onto their uniforms when she was dying to go to the washroom. Incidentally, Akira also proved to be the first girl to draw any sort of an aroused and flustered response from our main protagonist, which includes inadvertently flashing him some of her bra while she was in her shrine maiden outfit. Aside from the beginnings of some of Akira’s backstory on how she lives alone at the temple and how the defensive, candy store shopkeeper Ifukube Yahiro (Tanaka Ryouko) serves as her guardian of sorts, the only other girl shown to be making an honest effort towards hooking up with Haru was Kazuha. Naturally, that had me thinking that her somewhat strict behavior towards Akira may become an outlet for her to vent her frustration towards a potential rival, but color me surprised when I found out that they probably don’t even care to have Haru in the picture. Behind closed doors, Akira is the “onee-chan” all of a sudden, which immediately came off as some sort of reverse role-play.
Given how the end of the first episode wasn’t anything like it was made out to be, I’m inclined to believe that there isn’t any deeper meaning to this either. Whatever the case, I’m not anticipating anything this time around. 😛 As for Sora, it’s nice to see her join the gang at school just in time for cleaning the pool, as she could probably use a cold shower to rid herself of all those thoughts about her twin brother. Other than that, her twin-tails school uniform look puts a cuter and more innocent spin on her character, though I still prefer the one at home with her white one piece dress. At some subconscious level, it’s probably because it has that emo thing going for it. *sigh* It’s like a sickness!