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「俺の後輩がこんなに腐ってるわけがない」 (Ore no Kouhai ga Konnani Kusatteru Wake ga Nai)
“There’s No Way My Junior is This Rotten”
With the disappearance of Kirino, focus quickly shifts towards Kuroneko, a girl that has been slightly ignored in favor of the sister, but now receives the spotlight in the “true end.” I haven’t been following the fanbase too closely with which character is loved the most, but I can gather that most sided with the reserved, slightly more complex, “Gokou Ruri.” Relative to her usual garb, the contrast of a normal school uniform is almost extreme, and it’s hard to tell how obsessed Kuroneko is when she doesn’t speak of it. Then you see the cracks as she argues fervently about her favorite anime Maschera, excels in bullet shooters (she’d be great at touhou), and soon reminds us how far from a normal school girl she really is. But who said normal was ever interesting?
Due to being enrolled in the same school, Kyousuke is now able to observe her in a formal public environment, revealing some expected anti-social behavior. Saori explains it as her wanting to spend more time with them, but if that were truly the case, I don’t think she would have rejected Kyousuke in an earlier invitation. I’m not sure if she’s simply got a deeper social problem than was presented, but it does seem to be glossed over. Regardless, Kuroneko barely says anything most of the time, making the audience second guess her true intentions, and I think that’s what makes her intriguing. She does certainly speak up when it’s needed, expressing discontent with Kyousuke’s “pity” in an admirably blunt style.
But without Kyousuke’s incessant obligation to help out younger females with issues, we wouldn’t really have a story! If they weren’t even friends, he’d probably be on borderline harassment. In any case, his meddling eventually leads to the game club, where the mysterious bicycle owner from last episode conveniently resides. It’s really just all a setup to introduce the secretive Akagi Sena (Ise Mariya), whose character is practically Kirino but with a yaoi fetish (I prefer the yuri shippers, like Hiyori from Lucky Star). She’s got the shallow judgements down pat by joining a club with a self-interested goal but secretly hating everyone for their own interests. Her butting heads with Kuroneko would only seem natural at this point. She rocks the glasses like every fujoshi-loving character seems to do in anime, and gets overly excited when talking about her “hobby,” which leads to some hilarious outcomes, especially scarring the mind of poor ol’ Makabe. It almost makes me wonder what problems her brother Kouhei must have had on his possible side of the story: “My little sister couldn’t possibly be this gay?!” Looking at her scream on the table, I’m not sure which sister would be worse.
If this were a visual novel, this entire episode would’ve been the massive text dialogues you went through in order to get closer to the heroine, with a pivotal flag of, “stick nose some moar in her business” or “pull out.” Naturally, Smoothsuke chose the right path, diving into the dark pool that is the lovable Kuroneko’s heart and wins the episode, letting us proceed on with the true end. There’s always been the question begging to be confirmed since Kuroneko was introduced, “does she like Kyousuke?” It appears we may get that answer this time around, and judging by the next title, I think ya’ll need to grab your pacemakers.
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