「いつもの自分はどこにいる?」 (Itsumo no Jibun wa Doko ni Iru?)
“Where’s Your Usual Self?”

Maybe it’s because I’ve been drinking, but I think this was the episode I enjoyed the most since the whammy that was episode 12. The comedy and heart-warming moments were spot-on, but most of all it was the themes they evoked, which spoke to me in a way I dare not think I’ll be able to accurately convey. Sakurasou is at its best when it’s funny, silly, uplifting, dramatic, and a little bit ridiculous, but best of all is when it speaks to what it means to be an artist. And what do humans love more than stories? Maybe sex or booze, but only barely.

Sorata’s Crazy Family

Yuuko makes so much more sense now–and actually, Sorata does as well. I’ve always been on the fence about whether Yuuko was a good idea storytelling-wise (though I’ve found her entertaining since her introduction, which is the most important thing). Would this story have benefited more from a different kind of imouto, such as a Miya-chan, rather then taking the easy brocon route? But with the proper introduction of the rest of the Kanda family, Yuuko doesn’t seem so strange. She’s still strange mind you, it just makes sense.

Kanda-mama and Kanda-papa (Ookawa Tooru) are so funny! Kanda-papa definitely got the most laughs with how he would randomly (and loudly) proclaim things (“I do not find polygamy acceptable!” Screw you Kanda-papa, you’re ruining my backup plan!!), but I very much enjoyed hearing Arai Satomi in a more “normal” role. I like her usual roles, but hearing her smoothly slip from silly to regular housewife gave me more appreciation for her abilities. Plus she still got in some great moments, such as when she trolled Sorata by talking about how Nanami is such great waifu material.

Still, it’s hard to top Kanda-papa having a heart-to-heart talk with his son…by barging into the bath and passing out because he was too drunk. Why do I feel like I’m looking into the future? *stands up naked and yells* Opportunities wait for no one!!

*coughs* Ahem…excuse me. Moving on.

Fuel for the Nanami Shippers

And not just a little either. This episode was rife with Sorata x Nanami moments, whether when she was in waifu mode fixing Sorata his mother’s favorite recipes and teaching his little sister, or that whole heartfelt talk they had mid-way through. J.C. Staff, why are you so cruel?? I had all but written off Nanami, but now…well, I don’t reverse my assumptions, but you certainly aren’t making it easier for us viewers to accept her eventual loss! (I assume. Guh!!) The toughest moment came when Sorata got damn near dere for Nanami, when he was hoping she’d pass her audition. For her…and also to prove that hard work mattered. But more on that later.

The Misaki that Jin Loves, and Misaki’s Revival

Be very afraid of Mashiron, for she’s truly brilliant inside that confused savant’s daze, and sometimes when everyone else is busy, it’s her that will say just the right thing. Jin has awkwardly stated his case before, but this time he did it better – he loves Misaki deeply, but that doesn’t mean he should give up on his dream. Not that he wouldn’t if pressed, but he wants to be the best Jin he possibly can be, both for Misaki and himself, and that means pursuing his dream in the best way he knows how. I mean, if they’re really meant to be…gods, I hate that saying. Sometimes the timing isn’t right, sometimes you’re not mature enough yet, and sometimes things simply don’t work out when they really should have. Even so, he can’t give up everything about himself to be with her, and become a mere accessory. He wouldn’t want that of her, nor she of him…once she thinks about it.

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Presentations, Art, and Trying Hard

If you’re not interested in the ranting of a wannabe storyteller, feel free to ignore this section. It’s all relevant to the themes of the episode, but it might get a bit too “meta” for some, so I’m giving you this opportunity now. Turn back, ye of little faith – there be dragons ahead, and they come from the depths of my depraved mind mind. And they’re over-actors, if my prose is any indication. Moving on.

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Looking Ahead

Misaki finally understands, and Sorata’s big presentation is coming up. Episode 16…yup, that’s a multiple of four, which means that the next one is probably going to be a doozy. I have no idea what that means for Sorata’s presentation, aside from the fact that I’m excited. Bring it on.

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Fun time with the crazy Kanda-ke as Misaki learns a vital lesson, & everyone learns what it means to be an artist #sakurasou

Random thoughts:

  • That’s not the kind of fanservice I’m used too!
  • You have no idea how hard it was to write this post. Not because I was drunk or anything–okay, not just because I was drunk. (Damn you two buck chuck, why you so cheap and good!!) It’s because, by the time this episode ended, I really, really wanted to go create something. It’s as Misaki said – even now, even when I’m doing something I love, I want to stop and make something. The feeling is almost insurmountable. But I’ll finish this first, for you guy. N-not because I care about you or anything! *tsun tsun*

Full-length images: 04, 06, 07, 17, 19, 26.




  1. Meatball Beam! Meow! It was heartwarming to see everyone shouting their goals from atop the mountain as New Year’s Day rose over the horizon .. well save for Mashiro but she gets a pass for being simply too cute with that ultimate move of hers.

  2. Arai Satomi? In a normal role? To be honest I’d rather hear her shout ONEESAMA, cus no one shouts ONEESAMA like Arai Satomi. Sorata’s family is hilarious to watch, you can easily tell how Sorata became a natural tsukkomi.

  3. “you absolutely do need talent, determination, and hard work all in spades. Make no mistake though–of them all, it’s hard work that most separates the winners from the losers, each and every time.”

    there is also two kind of talent. 🙂
    The minor gift ( you are good at something )
    And the major gift ( you have the passion for it )

    And if you have the passion you should do it !

    on a different note. this anime is awesome especially the themes that it works on. and being a creator :3

    1. They’re one in the same, at least for major things. I find that the things that people really have a talent for are also the ones it’s easy to become passionate about. Nobody likes failing all the time after all, ne? Maybe just failing most of the time 😀

    2. FWIW, I’m not sure passion = talent. There’s a lot people who are very passionate about sports, for example, but don’t have the innate talent (and/or physical attributes) necessary to become professional. That being said, I definitely agree that those at the top of their fields are passionate about it. IMO, to truly excel requires more than just a high degree of natural talent. You have to work hard, very hard, in order to maximize that talent, and it’s impossible to do so for hours each day, month after month, year after year if you don’t have any real passion for it.

      The best in their field are notorious hard workers as well as being incredibly gifted. There are numerous examples. A random one is virtuoso guitarist Steve Vai who stated that he practices as much as twelve hours per day.

      @Stilts: “I find that the things that people really have a talent for are also the ones it’s easy to become passionate about.

      I think you’re exactly right there. It’s a lot more fun to do something in which you naturally excel rather than struggle endlessly… well I suppose “M types” might like that. Another RL example: Eddie Van Halen started out playing drums while Alex Van Halen tried guitar at first. Despite practicing for hours daily, Alex (who played on Eddie’s drum set while Eddie worked odd jobs to pay it) soon became a better drummer than Eddie. Frustrated because of that fact, Eddie switched to the guitar, and well, the rest is history as the saying goes.

      1. And there are those that have talent but their passions run in a different direction. Mashiro is a good example. A top-tier painter who would rather do manga. The festival arc in Hyouka also shows people with innate talent who have no passion for a particular craft.

      2. @bear: And there are those that have talent but their passions run in a different direction. Mashiro is a good example.

        I understand your point (and agree as well in concept), but to be honest, I don’t think Mashiro is the best example of that. Keeping with my music theme, Mashiro switching from painting to drawing manga is something I would liken to Van Helen switching from rock to jazz or even classical. Same passion (music), just a different genre.

        Of course there’s a story to write for the manga as well, but since show mostly focuses on Mashiro’s manga artwork (we see her drawing and redrawing sketches with drafts scattered across her room), I think it’s the artwork that primarily draws her interest to manga, not writing the story.

      3. @daikama Same passion (music), just a different genre.

        Yes, but with the same level of talent? I can think of a number of rockers who tried different genres (Elvis Costello(classical), Billy Joel(classical), Sting(medieval), with varying success. I don’t think they will reach the same heights in these that they did in rock. Not sure Mashiro will either even if she is happier in manga.

  4. Overall a solid epoisode.
    I just hope that Sorata will not treat Shiina bad again IF he fails again. And Shiina is just too adorable. Can’t wait till they hook up.

    Nanami scored some points with Sorata’s mom even when it’s clear that it won’t affect how our protagonist feels.

    It was a little depressing seeing Misaki like that.

  5. I thought Misaki’s depression was because Jin didn’t express himself properly. I was even angry at him for that, but this episode proved that to be a wrong assumption. He spoke clearly to her and she just behaved like a spoiled child. True to Sakurasou’s style, this week it was Misaki’s turn to be the regressed character. This artificial drama was specially evident in this episode, as the entirety of her screentime was spent to remind us of how depressed she was.

    Nothing much happened in the episode. But it was certainly impressive how Sorata, an aspiring game designer that’s working very hard towards his dream, learned that game companies want to make money above all else. Sakurasou’s MC proves again that he’s the kind of guy that needs to breathe manually to not die.

    EP15 was an uninteresting watch in all areas: Romance, Comedy, Drama. Anyone could skip this EP and miss nothing. Sakurasou keeps making one step back and two forwards to develop its characters.

      1. the drama wasnt artificial! she was really down in the dumps! she couldnt understand still why he wouldnt just MAKE SWEET LOVE TO HER LIKE AN ANIMALLLL! *RAWR*… when he could with her sister! have you never heard of being HORNNNNEY and getting turned down D: you really get bummmmed like deep depressioned.

        the episode showed the growth of sorata that hes come back better than ever before! not some defeated chump! hes EVOLVED! into *SORATA OPPORTUNITY SEIZER*(almost)!

    1. “Nothing much happened in the episode. But it was certainly impressive how Sorata, an aspiring game designer that’s working very hard towards his dream, learned that game companies want to make money above all else. Sakurasou’s MC proves again that he’s the kind of guy that needs to breathe manually to not die. ”

      Its quit easy when you are working on something hard to miss the most obvious.
      thats why its a good idea to always have someone read your ( writing, report , etc )
      its not really fair to blaim it on him.

    2. In Sorata’s defense, focusing on making a product interesting (in his case, fun) is the absolute best way to drive profitability. You can figure out how to monetize something, but if the product is shit then who cares? However, if the product is good, you’ll usually be able to figure out how to make money off it.

      …that said, you still need to consider it, and Sorata’s surprise at this fact was a little irksome. Better would have been “Holy crap, I totally forgot about that!”, which would have at least insinuated that he had thought about it before, and just got distracted by his creative stuff and forgot about that boring, real-world problem. Just goes to show you that slight word changes can mean the world to making a character look good or bad.

      1. cmon stilts youre totally ignoring the fact that he is still a naive highschooler kid…when fun still matters most! All taht passion and drive is for their own unadulterated pleasure? you dont get jaded until you strike out later in life cause of money.talks.do yoooou? this show tries to be realistic in this sense! kids dont worry about money until they enter the realworld plus its established sorata is just a very normal normal guy not some prodigy who knows exactly whats he doing!

      2. sorry thats where aoyama comes in since shes off on her own she quickly learned that money is everything for tuition/rent/food.! without money dreams die FASTTTTT. So she was the perfect person to pass on the knowledge! see these damn writers dont mess around the think about what they write eheh!Show Spoiler ▼

  6. This was a nice character development episode. It didn’t really hit me as hard as some other episodes did, but at least it a good job setting up the situation for the rest of the arc (which is hopefully concluded next episode).

    I get Yuuko’s introduction now as well, as it was important for this, and the rest of Sorata’s family are a bunch of oddballs too (that bath scene was hilariously awkward). Wonder if they’re going to show up elsewhere in the story.

    Nanami had a lot of nice moments in this episode as well, especially that talk she had with Sorata near the middle. And is it me, or did Shiina deliberately walk in there? She was mumbling something about experiencing new emotions (jealousy?). Shiina, for her part, had some great lines too (her solution for everything is stabbing things, it seems), as well as helping him out with her art.

    As for Jin, well, on one hand it’s kind of selfish towards Misaki (he’s kind of giving her mixed messages), on the other understandable. He’s choosing his career over her. I liked how the scène where he handed over the script to Misaki showed that she certainly knows the difference between good and bad ones (whereas at the start of the show, you’d get the impression that she was good at animation but just snooker-loopy on how scripts work), but she’s willing to ignore that for Jin’s sake – and I guess that would hurt him even more. If I was him though, the way I’d solve it is to simply hook up with Misaki but stop working with her until he’d finished his education and was at the par of his game. Hard, maybe, but you’d avoid both problems surrounding Misaki. Oh well.

    Looking forward to the next one.

  7. Big change in my perception of the little sister now. Before this, she was too much of a stereotypical brother complex imouto, but now, because of her love (whether romantic or not) for her brother, she works hard to be with him. It’s good that she has a motivation to work to get to a better school. Also, the Kanda family is wacky, but they sure do know how to support each other well.

    Misaki was suffering so much this episode. For the first half, she acted so out of character that I was really worried about her. She really was hit hard by Jin’s rejection. But now, I think that she rushed too much. I mean, it’s a bit too early to demand someone to be with you forever. Jin is working very hard for her sake and she should too for his sake. But I’m sure that they will get together in the end.

    Nanami and Mashiro didn’t get too much development this episode though. Apart from their usual acts (and Nanami’s waifu abilities) they were quite plain.

    Next episode marks another round of four episodes, so there is high expectations for episode 16. But hey, so far I have never been disappointed by Sakurasou.

  8. The reaction shot of Misaki reading Jin’s script was a great. She’s aware of his lack of talent. I wonder how much of Misaki’s depression was due to her knowing that Jin’s writing wasn’t that great and her fear that his lack of talent will prevent him from being with her.

    What a family! Even Sorata started acting wacky with the cat on the train. “I do not find polygamy acceptable!” Obviously Dad doesn’t watch much harem anime. The bath scene with the dad was too much.

  9. That thing with Mashiro giving Sorata a piece of art based on his game concept reminds me of how Lucas got Star Wars the go-ahead by comissioning Ralph McQuarrie, whose images remain astounding to this day.

    I love this show, it makes me passionate about my own passions. Thanks for covering this show.

  10. (“I do not find polygamy acceptable!” Screw you Kanda-papa, you’re ruining my backup plan!!)

    It is a perfectly functional solution in this situation! These people and their old fashioned morals just have no respect for the feelings of the poor girls trapped on the third leg of the love triangle.

    I regards to all the Sorata/Nanami development, I cannot help but compare it to Sorata’s interactions with Mashiro in the previous episode, and it seems very clear to me that all Sorata sees Nanami as is a friend. A friend who is a girl, yes, he knows she is a girl, but she is still just a friend. She is in love with him, but his interactions with her have none of that depth, none of that power that the ones with Mashiro had.

    Nanami has lost this. Sorata is delighted to have her as a friend who he trusts, but that’s all he sees her as.

    In other news, It’s great that the little life lesson Mashiro learned last time was just what Misaki needed to hear, and that Mashiro was able to relate it so perfectly. No “ordinary” person could have told Misaki what was wrong in so plain a manner: they’d all have gotten hung up on their own emotions and trying to rephrase things and stuff. But Mashiro’s autistic brilliance cut straight through all the nonesense to the core of the matter, and gave Misaki the answer she really needed. It was great to see Misaki finally regain her composure. Depressed Misaki is just… wrong. DO NOT WANT.

  11. They really cleared up the problem between Jin and Misaki from last episode. I originally thought it was a story-extender when Jin declined Misaki’s proposal. However, that one scene where Misaki’s facial expression turns slightly explains it all. Great way by JC to show the conflict with Jin’s personal and professional feelings.

  12. I’m an unabashed Nanami shipper, and something that I’ve been seeing (although I don’t know if anyone else has been seeing it) throughout the series is that Sorata seems to have *much* more of a sense of Nanami as a woman and as a potential lover than he does with Mashiro. The only times Sorata’s shown that boyish embarrassment are the times he’s focused on Nanami – She slips down the steps in episode Yuuko, they have alone time in this episode, seeing her in her bathing suit in episode 8.

    In contrast, he still seems to think of Mashiro as somewhat of a pet or a child. He tells her the things she does that he loves *about* her, and she does those things, and he acknowledges them and rewards her with smiles and , but that feels more like praising your child or your dog. I’d have thought that he’d start connecting those feelings toward her as someone you take care of to someone you care for and love, but he doesn’t seem to be doing that.

    It really leaves the question *still* open, in that it goes back and forth and back and forth.

      1. I demand Sakurasou no pet na kanojo: Another World, Misaki chapter.
        I could just accept that the maincharater has not even once shown any romantic feelings for Nanami an move on from ship that never was even one.

    1. Imo, Sorata is well aware that Nanami is a woman, but it is Mashiro that keeps drawing his attention. She dominates his mind far more than Nanami does. As the Capturing God would say, it’s far more important to stand large in your love interest’s mind, because even if they don’t love you now, it only takes a small push for all those other feelings to blossom into love, as long as there are a lot of them.

      There are a lot of feelings for Mashiro, and not many for Nanami. Still not looking good for kansai girl.

      1. Oh, I know that I’m gonna be heartbroken for Nanami (I actually hope I’m not, even if she doesn’t end up with Sorata, that it’s done in a way that they both move on as friends), and that Sorata’s gonna end up with Mashiro. But the show is doing such a great job at keeping it up in the air, at keeping both of them compelling and interesting.

        But none of that changes the fact that Nanami is a classy girl who deserves the best.

      2. @Highway
        1)There is nothing in the air, at least about how Sorata, Mashiro and Nanami are feeling and about how it will end between them.
        It’s just that “classy” girls shippers refuse to admit it.

        2)All of them are classy girls and all of them deserve the best, the male characters too.
        So wee have Misaki and Jin who love each other and we have Sorata and Mashiro wo love each other.
        The third wheel has no other choice but to accept this simple fact and move on. There are countless other guys in the world who can return her feelings.

  13. I swear, the writers must have some sort of intent on absolutely crushing some unfortunate fan’s heart when all is said and done with Nanami… I’m getting built up with what I perceive is false hope this will all end well the way I want it. Good episode anyways. Even though I don’t like her, Shiina is at her best when she pops out of nowhere and provides genius advice to her friends.

  14. Just hard work and talent?


    You forgot the brown-nosing, office politics, looks, personality, and don’t forget backstabbing necessary to achieve your dreams.


    I really liked this episode since there was no Sorata taking his frustrations out on Mashiro.

    How he retained his sanity with the mom and dad he has is worthy of respect or is Sorata sane? He did the right thing when his dad got into the bath with him. Any teenage son should run if their father wants to bath with them, especially when Sorata’s father almost sat on him. It is sad that both father and son think that Yuuko has no chance to get into Sei. Or more than likely they are being realistic given her personality. She is somewhat flightly and jumps from subject to subject easily.

    Maid-chan never fails to be entertaining with her wanting Sorata to assassinate Rita mafia-style. Makes one wonder if Rita is making significant inroads with Dragon, that Maid-chan thinks she is losing him. And if Rita is it’ll probably not be shown.

    As for Mashiro, Nanami, and Sorata, I agree with Wanderer with how Sorata perceives Nanami. What I’ve noticed is how each girl interacts with Sorata. When Sorata is with Nanami there seems to always be a conversation shown. It’s like they feel as if they have to be always interacting with one another. Contrast that with Mashiro, where they are comfortable being in the same room as each but not interacting with one another. And when they do interact, it is in a subdued manner with a slow, easy conversation.

    Comfortable is probably the best word to describe the current Mashiro/Sorata.

    1. Two things:

      On Sorata, Nanami, and Mashiro, you’re right, the fact that Sorata and Mashiro are able to be together and not talk is a great sign for their relationship. Some people think that the pinnacle of a good relationship is when you are having fun all the time and you talk a lot and all that. Not true. You know a relationship is really right when you can be completely silent with that person, and it’s totally comfortable. It’s when you can be at ease like, or even better than when you’re alone.

      On your brown-nosing / backstabbing comment, I would guess that more than a few people think that’s true, yourself perhaps included. Don’t believe that. Those are the kinds of things said by people who aren’t willing to play the game. Should one’s accomplishments stand for themselves? Doesn’t matter, because that’s not how humans work. There are ways to get ahead that both include working hard, doing great work, and ethically promoting one’s self. It’s better to seek these out than to rail against fundamental human nature like it’s wrong and will change for us if we just bitch enough. It hasn’t in the past however many hundreds of years, so it’s not liable to start now.

      1. On the brown-nosing and back-stabbing, I’ve never done it because I have too much pride and integrity to do it. Been back-stabbed many times and credit taken by brown-nosers. Too many people would rather take those routes instead of standing on their own accomplishments.

      2. I see meaningful discussion and therefore I must indulge myself- for it is a rare thing in the dark waters of the web.

        You say “fundamental human nature” but what- pray- exactly is “fundamental human nature”? That’s very much a question of perspective, one brought up by our dear friend Bill Watterson in a Calvin & Hobbes comic long ago; “Do you think humans are fundamentally GOOD, and occasionally do bad things? Or are humans fundamentally EVIL, and occasionally do nice things? Or- what if- humans are just plain ol’ crazy- and who knows why we do anything?”

        That’s a question that is as elusive as it is divisive. One side views the other as pessimistic, whilst the other view them as naive.

        We may tout hard work and perseverance- but is it always rewarded?

        The world is not always just- however strongly we may wish it to be. Is it fair to write off the multitudes of people who do not even glimmer- let alone shine- as lazy and weak-willed? And by “shine” I’m not talking about celebrity career, here. I mean successful enough to get a roof over their head, food on their plate, with enough left over so that they get some time away from the rat race.

        Although that is another aspect- leisure; and whether our views on leisure has warped our values somewhat.

        But I’m not sure if this is the appropriate place for such discourse, so I’ll cut it short. I simply wanted to bring up a few points.

  15. – Yuuko accidently running into her dad is one thing, but it’s also funny how she stuck to him and he walked away like nothing happened.
    – Sorata’s parents are cool. Makes me curious on how those two fell in love.
    – Really it was weird seeing Miisaki not being her energetic self. Glad she recovered.
    – Truly this episode made Sorata and Nanami look good for each other, which also makes it hard to cheer for that kind of ending.

  16. Definitely the general mood of the plot has become more serious, but it is amazing how the authors find the right timing to insert funny scenes.Plus, I think both the new OP and ED contribute to this mood.

      1. Only a mean spirited asshole like you would say stuff like that when both Mashiro and Nanami are both likable and this is the sort of competition when people genuinely don’t wish for losers.

  17. Nanami’s ship has taken a fatal hit last week, there is no doubt about that. Yet somehow she has received a minor lifeline via some parental support, as Sorata’s parents do favour her (they even explicitly say so in the novel).

    As I’ve said before, Sorata’s ability to tsukkomi like crazy is a nurtured skill, seeing how insanely funny his dad and sister can be, Arai Satomi for once plays a normal character.

    The anime gave the role to cheering up Misaki to Mashiro instead of Sorata, which I thought was well thought out, as Mashiro with her personal experience with Sorata was better able to convey to a fellow genius in Misaki on how to deal with a lover who was not as talented as them.

    Kinny Riddle
  18. Ah well, I thought SS Nanami was lost in the collision with the iceberg called Mashiron last episode, but valiant efforts by the crew not only have kept her afloat but she is gaining steam! With all the low-key but indispensable skills of cooking etc. she is every bit as dangerous as Mashiron with her crazy yet brilliant ways!
    Kanda-papa would have made mortal enemy of certain Deviluke if they ever meet – Polygamy is NOT allowed! Ever!
    Last but not least, Misaki finally got the message from Jin right and is up in arms about her own creativity. If they manage to keep each other getting up in the arts departament, I expect masterpieces soon!


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