「気にしたり 想いっきり駆け出したり」 (Ki Ni Shitari Omoi Kiri Kake Dashi Tari)
“Worrying and Racing Ahead”
I don’t know how TARI TARI does it, but every few weeks, it just manages to leave me speechless for one reason or another. I mean, the things that happened this episode had me so emotional that it actually left me in despair at the end. And it’s because I realized that no matter how hard I tried and no matter the vocabulary I had at my disposal, I wouldn’t be able to properly talk about everything in this episode. But as my pick for the best show of the season, it’s my obligation to try my best to get more people watching, and try I shall.
And so, I’ll start out with the major highlight of this episode: Sawa. Nursing the injuries suffered at the end of the last episode and knowing that her chances of becoming a jockey have taken a big hit, she ends up going as far as changing her choice for her career plans. And well, it’s just a darn important scene because not only does it emphasize how hard it is to actually become a jockey in the first place, it also gives a great portrayal of an experience that many of us have had at least once: the moment where you have to decide whether to take the leap of faith and chase your dream… or to move on and choose something more grounded in reality.
And as someone whose already had to make this decision, I really just can’t help but identify with Sawa in this case, especially when it comes to the time period after this, where you can’t stop thinking: “Did I make the right choice?” “What happens if I had chosen the other route?” It really is a crippling time period to say the least. Not to mention the feelings are things that just don’t really go away, even years later. And this just further demonstrates why TARI TARI is such a great slice of life, because it doesn’t just take the “grandiose dreams” aspect of the slice of life genre and run for it. Instead, they take the dreams, ground them in reality a bit, and give us plenty of realistic scenarios, views, and quotes to go with it. And as a result, we get a show with characters we can easily empathize with and thus a show that just gives so much more emotional impact with everything that happened.
Granted, the end result of her father actually realizing her despair and how much she really wants to be a jockey and trying to assist her cause, wasn’t exactly as realistic… but you can’t argue that it couldn’t happen. Regardless though, this is one of those scenes where I can’t help but feel there’s more to it than just what you see on the surface. See, aside from it being a darn great scene, one can also argue that it’s a commentary on families in general; that deep down, no matter what most parents say or do… they really care for their children. And that while they sometimes they do it wrong and sometimes they just can’t describe their feelings right, the end result is that they’re doing what they think is in the best interest of their child’s future. Yes, their views may be wrong… but I think that doesn’t matter here. Rather, what matters is the basic understanding behind the parent’s motives… to take this into account and not to snap at them at every little thing despite at how harsh some things may sound.
Moving on, there’s just a load of other powerful quotes that have many ulterior meanings or were just plain awesome. Just shows how much more complex TARI TARI is compared to how it looks on the surface. Some quotes below:
“Maybe you just need to step back” / “If I step back now, it’s over. Why’s everyone telling me to quit?”
The key thing here is how Sawa considers this being equivalent quitting. But, what it really means (at least in my opinion): “Slow down. Take a little bit of time to think. Are you really, really sure you want to follow your dream? Screw thinking about reality for a moment. If you really want to follow it, then go for it. But if you have an major doubts, maybe you shouldn’t go for it.” Just a great show of maturity from Wakana in that respect.
Wakana: “Until I joined the Choir Club, I thought music was a skill you cultivated on your own. But I was wrong. You need to be with others, let your feelings intersect and connect and experience joy and suffering together.”
Konatsu: “Remember when you told me that I didn’t have that special something that moves people? I can’t do it alone. But with the help of my friends, I think I’m at a point where I have the potential to move people’s hearts. I believe a teacher’s job is to develop that potential.”
To say the least, the above quotes are just… powerful. Not only do they emphasize the fact that sometimes you just need someone else with you to accomplish something (and thus friendship), it shows the maturation of our two heroines as the show has progressed. It shows how they’ve realized many of the views they held before were wrong, have accepted it, and are ready to move on… together. And it also gives a subtle commentary on the job of teachers in general: to develop our potential. I could go on a whole side story about how many teachers aren’t doing that well these days… but that’s a whole ‘nother Pandora’s Box.
Wakana: “When I was depressed, I wanted to be left alone. But, it was nice to know someone cared”.
And it’s true. Sometimes there are things that people can only solve by themselves. It helps to talk it out with others, but in the end, the person having the problem has to get over it and accept their decision or what has happened themselves, or else they won’t ever really get over it. To them, just knowing that friends care though goes a long way towards that process.
In any case, there’s just plenty of those quotes throughout not only this episode, but the series itself… and it goes to show how different TARI TARI is compared to a typical slice of life. But, that’s it for the quotes for now, as I’m hitting around 1100 words at the moment (see what I mean by being unable to talk about everything in this post!?). So, I’ll just do a quick bullet point summary of the moments that really helped make this episode:
Anywho, I reckon I’ve knocked out most of the readers by now, so that’s about it for now. Catch ya guys next week.
EDIT: Oh yes, forgot to mention. There are few shows that made me tear up or bawl at all, but no show has gotten me tearin’ up twice, and TARI TARI’s managed to do that. Major points for that feat.
Full-length images: 03.