「この先もただいまを言うために」 (Konosaki mo Tadaima o iu Tameni)
“So We Can Keep Calling It Home”

Such is the arrogance of amateurs playing at PR. Because they’re afraid of what people might say about the school, the board decided to move up the demolition of Sakurasou from five years to immediately, all because they think Mashiro should be painting. What right do they have! But more importantly, they’re forgetting one thing – the residents of Sakurasou. They will not go quietly into that good night…

Both At Once and None At All

The choices Sorata and Ryuunosuke faced this episode were of particular interest to me. To help or not to help seems like an easy choice – it should be based off what is right and what you want to do, right? Well, as is in reality, so is in fiction, because the answer is rarely as easy as that.

For Sorata, it came down to bandwidth. Despite what some people will tell you, human beings are horrible multitaskers. Actually, that’s not the important point – it’s that we’re cognitive misers. The mind is like a muscle, in that the more you use it in a particular day, the more tired it will get. We can only make so many decisions in a day before we burn out! Therein lies the difficulty in Sorata’s decision – does he pick the game competition, saving Sakurasou, or do both and risk doing them badly?

For my money, I think Sorata made the right choice, but that’s not without caveats. Human beings can sprint for a while, but if they try to do it too long, they’ll either burn out or start doing everything badly. Trust me on this, I’ve been there myself. That said, with less than a month between now and the final review / graduation ceremony, Sorata probably has it in him to do one short, strong sprint. I sure hope he does. Also, kudos to Fujisawa for giving him the push he needed. He’s going to be a great mentor for Sorata.

As for Ryuunosuke, I’ll speak more to him in a later section, but let me say one reason why I’m glad Sorata didn’t follow his advice. He was not wrong that Sorata’s time is the most valuable of any of theirs right now, but he was absolutely wrong with the conclusion he drew from it. For Sorata to win at the competition while letting something important to him be destroyed is the same as losing. This is what I think – victory without integrity is failure. You have to win the right way, and letting the board destroy their home for such a dumb and selfish reason…nu uh, no way. That doesn’t feel right at all.

The Bitter Pill – Nanami’s Results

Oof, that hurt. I knew it was coming, the whole setup and the buildup and everything that has happened screamed that she wouldn’t make it, but damned if it didn’t hurt nonetheless. The point I want to get across is how powerful this scene was to one who has come to like Nanami so much. And that’s the key – if they hadn’t done such a good job of making her likable (to me! Down rabid shippers, down!), then it wouldn’t have hurt so much. But they did, slowly and surely, and then the scene came – the background noise died away to nothing, the sigh, the small smile that made you think hey wait, just maybe (but no, you don’t even believe that for a second, you just want to), the brittle smile of shattered dreams…oof.

Such was the overwhelming power of this scene that it dyed all of the zany Misaki antics that came after it, making them bitter and painful to watch. Once again, not painful bad – this is fiction reaching in and twisting the heart, which the highest of compliments in my storyteller eyes, even if it hurts like a bitch when they pull it off. They got Nanami into a Torajirou suit and glomped her, everyone was being silly and happy and fun…but it tasted like ash in my mouth. Even now that mood still permeates. That’s the curse (glory! power!) of Sakurasou’s Rule of Four – it was great and done very well, but I’ll be damned if it didn’t affect me, and does still. I’ll be damned if it didn’t hurt.

Ryuunosuke Believes

Ahhh Ryuunosuke. His dilemma can be summarized by a single line from Rita: “If you’re just going to be disappointed, it’s better not to try.” He was betrayed by his friends in the past (or so he felt – he probably went overboard himself), due to the curse of the genius, due to wanting to create something great and the others not being able to catch up. This was the same problem that Rita had, save that Ryuunosuke was in Mashiro’s place, and he knew it enough to hurt when they left. Now, he’s not sure if these new friends of his are about to do the same. To me, it sounded like he almost wanted Sakurasou to be demolished, just to see if they would stick with him when they weren’t around one another all the time.

The best part of this was the unexpected collaboration between Meido-chan and Rita. First of all, let me say this – if that’s the kind of AI he can create, one with depth and feelings and emotions as real as any human I’ve ever met, Ryuunosuke ought to be a very wealthy man already. But that aside, that Meido-chan would recognize the limits of her ability to help her master and instead encourage him to talk to Rita, her eternal nemesis – bravo, Meido-chan.

As for Rita herself, she was right, of course. Even if they don’t live together, these are good, solid friends who will not desert or betray him, no matter what. Not that I don’t understand – we all knows it’s wrong to not try when the odds are long, but all of us do it from time to time. But you have to. If it’s worth fighting for, if it’s worth attempting, you’ve got to try. You’ll never grow if you don’t try, never be able to go to sleep at night free of regret, and never occasionally pull off those big wins that can change your life forever.

Fortunately, Ryuunosuke made the right choice. It still didn’t quite wash away the bitter pill of Nanami’s loss, but it made me smile even so. Fight on, people of Sakurasou. Fight on!

Looking Ahead

Four more episodes. It’s clear that this adaptation won’t get through all the source material (though that’s been clear for a long time), but I still wonder where it will end. I haven’t seen the hurry up yet, but even if the demolition crisis is solved next week, where will they choose to end it!? Anime original ending, Season 2, cut off here forever – I’m filled with concern, as I always am in these situations. But I’ll force it down and wait to see.

For now, it’s mainly Mashiro’s move that worries me most. I think she heard Sorata, Ryuunosuke, and Nanami talking in the hall. She says it’s better when everyone is together, but she wants to protect Sakurasou as well. What are you going to do, Mashiron?

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Like a punch to the gut, #sakurasou’s Rule of Four comes into play again. Just cry, Nanami. Just cry.

Random thoughts:

  • So the woman Fujisawa loved was lost about what to do, trying to decide whether to keep pursuing art or become an art teacher. Erh, wait a second…Chihiro-sensei!?
  • Loved Ryuunosuke’s tPhone. All power to the tomatoes!
  • I will never be kuma hugged by Misaki-sempai. So lucky, Nanamin! Well, except for that one thin–oof. Yeah, it still hurts.

Full-length images: 09, 21, 23, 35.




  1. Is it just me or does the girl from Ryuunosuke’s background looks a lot like Meido-chan? Possible old flame? She was also the last one to dissapear in the flashback, taking a lot longer then the others…

    1. I didn’t notice that right away, but it really is an interesting thing to note. From the flashback was the last one to leave and in the end he creates this AI that looks like her. Someone that won’t actually leave. Might think that he did like that girl and her leaving was the deepest cut of them all, making him give up on girls entirely.

      It is an interesting way to look at a character. Although whatever the original intentions I like how Maid-chan’s character has come this far. While still rejecting Rita out of her danger as a love interest, still puts Dragon’s well being above all else.

  2. Dang Stilts…you got this one out early!

    Haven’t seen the episode yet, but I’m happy to see a Ryuunosuke centric episode.

    P.S. Ryuunosuke ‘s tPhone has a much sassier version of Siri in Meido-chan. I’d rather have a cute animated maid that does everything and your breakfast any day!

  3. I call for unnecessary drama on Nanami’s news. Just a cheap way to overdramatize the situation. Unless she wins the love race, she’s pretty much out of the picture on the rest of the plot.

    1. Have you never read a real novel or watched a play by a serious dramatist? Sakurasou isn’t a warm, fuzzy slice of life where things go on practically unchanged for week after week. Nanami’s dream, her whole life plan, has been trashed in an instant, and it was handled here with the bare minimum of drama. It really touched me, and I’m not even a Nanami-shipper.

      1. To me, the writer just killed off the character. Would you care for the story if Mashiro or Sorata suddenly lost their will to be on the show? I don’t know if it’s an adaptation problem, but it was handled carelessly.

  4. 1. Good to see Nanami not showing her disappointment so much.
    2. One of the main character’s past is revealed.
    3. Mashiro did not come out too many times, but when she did make an appearance, the artwork became hel~la great!
    4. Good to see the characters fighting back against the demolition.
    5. Entrance of Rita made me happy!
    6. Probably it’s just me, but is that the costume (the animal costume that Misaki wears in this episode) from Ending 1? Love the animators for plugging that one in there.

    I am feeling sad to say that it’s already episode 20. What am I going to watch after Sakurasou is over?

  5. Gah, I just had my heart ripped out. I expected it, but it hit me harder than I thought it would. I share the same worries about the last couple of episodes, whether they’ll storm through the material or go for an anime original ending. =S

    1. I hold out hope that, since going into the hurry up didn’t work well for this team at the end of Toradora, they won’t pull that. An artfully done anime original (using later content to end the series on a different – but similar! – note) would be next best. Probably best would be to continue faithfully adapting and hope for a Season 2, but who knows if we’ll get that >_<

    2. I knew from my past experience that there was a high chance that Nanami is gonna fail. So I prepared the worst. There was a pause when Nanami was reading the letter. From her lack of emotion, I guess she didn’t get it. So I let out a small whimper. Suddenly, Nanami made a smile. Gosh did she make it? All her hard work finally paid off. Promptly congratulated her. But then she let the cat out of the bag that she failed. So that smile of hers was a fake one. Damn that scene so much fondling with one’s heart.

      1. Beware the writer that takes your heart in the palm of their hand, but also rejoice in it, for the powerful (terrible, horrible, amazing) feelings that they can squeeze out of your pain.

  6. Deferring her sadness might have another benefit for Nanami. As time passes, great hurts do fade. Not to say that piling another hurt on top of it wouldn’t be worse, but she has seen the end of a dream she’s held since being a small girl. It’s sad that she wasn’t able to make it. And that will probably always be something that she wishes went differently. But focusing on something else will occupy her now, and by the time she gets back to thinking about her disappointment, she’ll realize that it doesn’t hurt as much as she thought it might.

    1. Yes…but she’s doing it in the wrong order. To crib the words from a wise man I once met, it’s best to take failure like a child. When you come up short, cry, and cry openly – feel the hurt, allow it to run over and through you. Then, once you’re all done crying, move onto the next thing.

      The sadness of one must be dealt with before one can move on. The fact that Sakurasou’s crisis is happening now does make the timing a bit difficult for Nanami, but burying the hurt won’t help. She needs to dry, openly and deeply, before she can move on. Burying the feelings does her no good.

  7. Now, he’s not sure if these new friends of his are about to do the same. To me, it sounded like he almost wanted Sakurasou to be demolished, just to see if they would stick with him when they weren’t around one another all the time.

    It comes down to knowing who to pick as your friends, given what you know about your own personality and abilities. A genius like Ryuunosuke especially needs to choose his friends carefully because the fact of the matter is that most people will not be able to accept him for who he is. For geniuses, the default barriers between themselves and the formation of meaningful friendships are twofold (Excluding aggravating factors like Mashiro’s problem): One, others find it difficult to understand/identify with them because they tend to be so inherently unique cognitively (All the people who are saying that Nanami is “A better character” than Mashiro because she is more “identifiable” prove my point.); and Two, their superior abilities are likely to stir the envy of many. Of course, I am not discounting the existence of the odd charismatic genius- who apart from being really good at certain career-related fields also happens to be exquisitely gifted in the EQ realm and manages to fit into society marvelously…the lucky ones in other words…

    But the sad truth is that most geniuses usually aren’t so lucky, and are forced to pay a heavy price for their abilities; the path of a genius is often a lonely one, but he/she can still make a few good friends along the way if he/she knows where to look. And I would contend that the first and most obvious thing to look for is kindred spirits, i.e. other geniuses; people who have been through similar persecutions for their superior abilities and neuro-divergence who would be more readily able to to identify/understand him/her. Also there are sometimes people who try to understand geniuses because they wish to emulate one, or happen to be close to one; they have learned to go the extra mile to understand you and your special needs, so they too can make good friends. And then finally a genius should go looking for open-minded, magnanimous folks who willingly accept just about anyone for their differences; people-lovers with high emotional intelligence (independent of introversion or extroversion) who place great value on having good interpersonal relationships with everyone- notably, Sorata happens to be one of these awesome people, as is Stilts…

    So let us assume that Sakurasou existed in the real world with everything up to this point in time happening just as it did in the show- except that there is no plot armor in place ensuring that Ryuunosuke’s friends are actually true friends. The demolitions incident occurs and Ryuunosuke comes to me (I’ll play the role of his childhood playmate who is one of the few people he trusts) and asks me for advice about what to do, stating that he is concerned whether saving Sakurasou is worth the trouble, given the fact that he is unsure about his friends’ sincerity.

    Even in this scenario I wouldn’t have any problems reassuring him that saving Sakurasou is the right thing to do, and that his friends are probably true ones. Because in terms of friends for geniuses, Ryuunosuke’s literally struck the lottery. He lives in a boarding house populated solely by people from the categories mentioned above. Everyone in Sakurasou is either a genius themselves or already close friends with a genius, wanting to be like one, or very open-minded- and several even fall into multiple categories.

    Misaki and Mashiro are themselves geniuses, and Misaki also happens to be extremely open-minded on top of also being a genius with whom he can readily identify- Mashiro, well Mashiro’s a outlier with her emotional special needs, I’ll leave it at that. Equally rare and exceptional are Sorata and Chihiro who are extraordinarily magnanimous and open people by nature who treasure human relationships above all else and naturally do their best to understand and accept just about anyone they come into contact with.

    Jin and Nanami on the other hand are people who are good friends with other geniuses- not particularly open-minded or exceptional in any inherent way, but they are still people who are clearly willing to go the extra mile to understand and accept the neuro-divergence of geniuses, learning to do so because of their desire to emulate/romantic interest in their genius peers. It must be noted that Sorata also falls into this category, but only secondarily; he wants to understand Mashiro because he wants to emulate her and is romantically interested in her, but we must not forget his bleeding heart persona; there’s a good chance that he would’ve probably forced himself to learn to understand Mashiro even in the absence of the aforementioned motivations simply because of how important interpersonal relationships are to him- in fact might even be easier for him because if he didn’t want to emulate Mashiro’s success, he would have no reason to be jealous of her.

    Of course, having so many people who are able to accept and even understand a genius so conveniently gathered in one place is a probabilistic anomaly unlikely to occur outside of the realm of fiction; reality is rarely so kind- all the more reason for real-world geniuses to be extra careful when selecting friends, I suppose…

    I haven’t seen the hurry up yet, but even if the demolition crisis is solved next week, where will they choose to end it!? Anime original ending, Season 2, cut off here forever – I’m filled with concern, as I always am in these situations. But I’ll force it down and wait to see…

    That terrifies me. If they go for the anime-original route, I’m not confident that they’d be able to avert ending things in a train wreck- which would be a shame considered how much I’m enjoying this show. I wonder what the ratings/DVD sales are like and if they’re good enough to warrant a second season…fingers crossed…

    1. You do me a kindness good sir. I can’t claim to have Sorata’s bleeding heart, but I do genuinely love people, and always seek to learn from the best. If I have any special abilities, they’re only in lying and theft, and who better to steal the best attributes from than the very best? But you have to give something in return, and what I choose to give is wholeheartedly caring.

      But to summarize your overriding point for those who went all tl;dr, you’re right – Ryuunosuke hit the jackpot with these particular friends. Of course, part of that is owing to the unique formation of Sakurasou – it is a dorm for misfits, for the outliers that couldn’t fit in anyplace else. Merely surviving at Sakurasou is to expose yourself as one of the types of people you outlined 9 times out of 10, so even without knowing them, fighting for the people of Sakurasou is a good bet for Ryuunosuke. Knowing them, it’s a home run.

      1. If I have any special abilities, they’re only in lying and theft, and who better to steal the best attributes from than the very best? But you have to give something in return, and what I choose to give is wholeheartedly caring.

        Ah, but how then can it be theft if you have given your sincere, wholehearted caring in return? You have paid the price for all which you take from them with the most priceless thing of all- love, and for that the peculiar who have received little of it in life due to the idiosyncrasies of their nature will be forever grateful…

    2. I honestly think an original ending would be more fitting than leaving things unfinished. There’s no guarantee there will be a sequel and they current stand in a perfect opportunity to end the series with a definitive ending.

      My personal take would be – Sakurasou is not saved but they learn to accept it. They keep in touch, continue to be good friends. Misaki and Jin get married after college. Shiina pursues her dreams and finally learns to interact emotionally in her life, keeping in touch with Sorata. But Sorata and Nanami hook up. Where she fails in her dream career, she can succeed in love.

      I understand that’s very unlikely to happen considering Shiina is the female lead and it’d probably anger some people. But someone like Nanami would win in love 9 times out of 10. She’s closer to Sorata, her situation is a lot more relatable than a genius who shows little emotion like Mashiro. Someone like her is the type of crush that just fades because she can’t communicate. It’s superficial. Where as Nanami is the type where you really connect with her. I think any guy worth his manhood would have kissed her/made a move on her in this last episode.

      And sadly, I think the series will be worse off if Nanami just ends up with that random dude who likes her. Shiina can still succeed in her career in a way Nanami cannot. But I don’t have enough confidence in the writer to believe it could happen.

  8. hhahaha REJOICING! pooor strings band playing till the bitter end G.G. sink ship sink!
    NO WORRIES MASHIRO is a PRO! if the problem is with her halting her production of MASTER PIECEs? but instead manga? then it is up her to be the solution she started and shell end it! DURRR what be the solution? shell just whip out a BIG OL CANVAS that will be her next master piece problem solved!! shes made a new master piece yay she can make em np! and then sorata can go to a dark corner and hugging his knees with thes dark lines over his head…

  9. Also, kudos to Fujisawa for giving him the push he needed. He’s going to be a great mentor for Sorata.

    +1 to that. Seriously, Sorata is VERY lucky to be working under someone that understanding. A lot of business professionals would not take kindly to a rookie spacing out during an important business meeting.

    +10 to Meido-chan and Rita, especially Rita. Ryuunosuke, you’re a VERY lucky man. Few women would be as patient as Rita after your ice-cold reception on Valentine’s Day. She truly understands and cares about you and puts up with your crap. Close the deal NOW before it’s too late. Anyway, Meido-chan & Rita stole the show this episode for me. I think together the helped Ryuu take a large step back from a hikikomori future… albeit a spectacularly wealthy one as Stilt’s suggests given Meido-chan’s Sci-Fi level of AI programing. Evidently, the NASA level of computing equipment in his room is more than just playing Crysis 3 (:P).

    Kudos as well to Nanami for handling her rejection so well. Although foreshadowed (and spoiled), it was still disappointing especially in light of the fact everyone else succeeded in their goals. At least she gave it her best shot which does make it a littler easier to take. It just wasn’t meant to be. As for her & Sorata, I’m now for Nanami x Miyahara-kun. For a long time he’s care about her – to the extent he didn’t interfere with her chasing after Sorata. Nanami’s embarrassed “thank you” seemed to suggest that she might be starting to see him in a different light. Or I’m just reading into things too much.

    I guess Masaki wouldn’t be Masaki without some outlandish scheme, but does she really think this is going to help gather signatures? Jin… you’ve got your work cut out for you.

    Not that it really matters, but the one complaint I have about this episode is the reason for shutting down Sakurasou.

    1. Meh – hit submit by mistake. FWIW, here’s why I don’t like that plot point.

      Closing down Sakurasou because of possible negative feedback from Mashiro switching to manga from painting just strains credibility too much IMO. Seriously, if Mashiro still decides write/draw manga after Sakurasou is closed, will the school board defend it’s actions with something like: “Hey – we did all we could! We closed down the dorm where she was living. What more do you want?” One can only imagine what might happen if the school board discovers Mashiro is doing the artwork for Sorata’s game.

      Seems to me like there would (or should at least) be much more criticism leveled at the school board for surreptitiously trying to force a student to choose an occupation against that student’s will. If closing the dorm is absolutely required as a plot point, then a much more credible reason like “it’s too expensive/not worth the upkeep” would have sufficed and been much less distracting IMO.

      Frankly, JMO, but the whole “either paint or create manga” theme has been far overplayed by the show. Painting and manga are not by definition mutually exclusive. Write some manga, take a break and do a couple paintings, back to manga or whatever. Some soldiers in WWII (I’m sure other conflicts as well) sketched drawings during active combat duty. Compared to that, writing/drawing manga hardly seems like any sort of real barrier to painting as well. Art is very much inspiration and great artwork can’t be forced. Mashiro is more than talented enough to do both… if she wants.

      1. I have to disagree. I find it very realistic. As art forms go, painting is seen as “better” or “higher class” than manga, so an artist “lowering herself” to manga because of the school (as people who are disappointed at seeing no more Mashiro paintings might say) could be a bad situation for the school.

        …that said, the school is forgetting their mission. Their mission is not to cover their asses and avoid bad things being said about them, though it’s understandable that they’d want to do that. Their mission is to do the best job educating and nurturing their students as possible. This is getting in the way of that for multiple students (and high performing ones at that!), hence why they are wrong.

      2. @Stilts: The vast majority of the time I agree with you, but in this instance, I just can’t. While I do agree there is certainly a “hierarchy” in art (painting > manga, classical > rock, etc.), the problem for me is that the show took that to an implausible extreme.

        First, IIRC, the whole reason Mashiro transferred was because she wanted to draw/write manga BEFORE she even enrolled. Mashiro was so determined that she had no reservation learning a foreign language and traveling alone across the globe to attend school. Quite reasonable to assume that a different residence or even school would result in the same or nearly the same outcome given that level of commitment. The board dismissed this, but I find their arguments forced and unconvincing. Instead, IMO this fact alone gives the school an easy and quite plausible counter-argument.

        Second, the method of influence is far too indirect. Had Ryuu not hacked the school board’s computer, how would Mashiro even know she’s being “punished” for making the “wrong” decision? An integral part of punishment is the recipient understanding what behavior is “wrong.” Even if Sakurasou was the reason Mashiro chose manga over painting, it’s too late at this point. Her manga’s already published and gaining popularity. Does anyone really find it credible at this stage that Mashiro will only draw manga so long as she lives at Sakurasou? Under that logic, all the school board has to do is wait for her to graduate.

        Third, whatever negative response the school might receive is FAR outweighed IMO by the potential PR nightmare if their actions were made public. That type of publicity certainly won’t help alumni or corporate donations – a big source of school revenue. Furthermore, why would ANY genius/prodigy student want to go to a school that dictates which careers are “acceptable” for them to pursue? Evidently free will doesn’t mean much with genius-level talent even if guaranteed by law. I find the risk/reward ratio for the school undertaking such actions abysmal – so much so that I can’t see any rational board member approving it short of blackmail.

        Fourth, the methodology as a concept is ludicrous IMO. What if Mashiro does go back to painting, but only creates one painting a year which is “unacceptable”? Now what – make her fail some classes? Put her in a solitary “dorm”? Certainly there are numerous cases in RL where fans/business partners/whatever of an artist are upset with an artist’s decision – whether moving to a new genre, too little/slow “production” or even “early” retirement. However, society doesn’t find it acceptable to use punishment as a means of coercion. Rather than the “stick”, the “carrot” is used = money. I remember reading that the ’70s group ABBA was offered as much as $1 BILLION (US) to go on a reunion tour. Frankly, I’d find it more realistic if Mashiro was offered Sakurasou as an incentive to return to painting.

        tl:dr – JMO, but I still ain’t buying it.

        @Bear – Good point in your 2nd paragraph. I agree completely.

    2. But that’s bureaucrats for you. As long as they say the followed the rules and “did” something to cover their ass, they really don’t care whether it works or not. If they don’t do something, they might get condemned for it, but if it doesn’t work then there would probably be no consequences. “We tried but those damned kids had already brainwashed her!” Actually, what’s happening is so realistic it makes me sick.

      The obvious solution for the kids is to have Mashiro confront the board and threaten them with publicity. She could say that she needs Sakurasou’s environment and her manga to allow her to recharge her artistic muse and will go to the press to tell them that she will be devastated and unable to work for a long time if Sakurasou is demolished. They don’t even have to bring up the fact that the boards deliberations were hacked. She can just state it as a fact that is unrelated to that and they can’t prove otherwise.

  10. Ah…the episode where the sacrificial lamb of this show inevitably meets her fate huh?To be honest I’m a bit annoyed with so much happening.I was expecting a whole episode dedicated to Nanami before her inevitable “fate” came to past but this whole Sakurasou demolition fiasco is taking up most of the screen time.

    Of course this could be taken care of in one of the remaining episodes but for some reason I’m kinda doubting it.The romance part of Sakurasou,especially between Mashiro & Sorata doesn’t seem to take that much focus anymore and I’m starting to get worried that it’ll feel rushed & unnatural when it does eventually happen…

  11. Ryuunosuke is such a tsundere “Spock” type character.

    The anime makes significant changes for the better by making Rita the reason for Ryuunosuke’s sudden change of heart into deciding to help his housemates.

    In this scene, we have Sorata actively shoves Misaki off just to get a hug on Ryuunosuke. I think it’s pretty clear where Sorata’s heart truly lies. Though Rita would certainly not leave this lying down.

    (DISCLAIMER: In case people still don’t get it, I WAS CLEARLY JOKING, so relax Mashiro-shippers and Nanami-shippers. )

    After having to suffer from Jin taking the piss out of him all these years, the ex-President finally gets to have the last laugh. XD

  12. I’m glad the drama returned this week! It’s the series strong point and makes it worth waiting for, because despite what other people said I found last weeks episode less powerful/interesting, even though the flashbacks were useful story-wise.

    Maido-chan, even though you don’t have much screentime you steal the show every single time and this week you had your best performance!

  13. I knew this thing with Nanami was coming, although I honestly expected it sooner. That’s actually why I’ve avoided the last few episodes. I couldn’t bear to see it, and I still can’t. Everything Nanami has done in coming to this school, working so hard to support herself, moving to Sakurasou, auditioning, struggling so hard for her dreams, making friends at school and in Sakurasou, finding someone she loves, all of it has just been turned into wasted effort. She’s going to be forced to leave, to go back to a family that has never appreciated her determination, to abandon her hopes and dreams for the life she wanted to have, to abandon everyone and everything she’s come to know and care for. EVERYTHING good in Nanami’s life has just been crushed and destroyed. You cannot overcome this with some crazy Misaki antics. Nanami’s going to have to leave for good.

    This is the worst possible ending to Nanami’s story. It is horrible. I cannot imagine what the author was thinking when they wrote things this way, but this is a terrible way to resolve the love triangle.

    1. I know Mashiro will end up with Sorata, but Nanami is one of my favorite character. I felt bad for her when she didn’t make it. She worked so hard. I hope she ends up happily regardless.

    2. Waste effort? Wasted effort!? Bite your tongue, my good sir of madam!

      No effort, if given with all of your strength, skill, and determination, is wasted, no matter the outcome. Even if she does not become a seiyuu – and that’s not written in stone, not by a long shot! – this effort will change Nanami forever, and not for the worse. To have put so much time and effort into her dream is impressive, and even if this dream ends up dying, she’ll put that effort into a new dream in time.

      Do you seriously think life ends if you fail at the dream you had in high school? Because if so you can call me a zombie, ’cause I’m a good three dreams past that now! Trust me on this – great effort like Nanami’s is never wasted, no matter the result. The journey changes you, and for the better. Believe it.

      1. The changes made in her are meaningless now, because of the terms of the agreement she made. Because she failed the audition, Nanami is leaving the school and going back to her home to become a slave to those parents who have never understood and always despised this free will their daughter has displayed. Her desires and hopes and dreams have all become irrelevant: her parents are going to crush and destroy all of that because it doesn’t conform to what they have decided her life is going to be. They will kill the person we know to turn her into their “ideal” daughter. She is not going to find a new dream. Her parents won’t allow it. That would require her to be able to make her own decisions, and that is anathema to them.


    3. @ Wanderer: I agree with you that is very disappointing for Namami to fail in her dream of becoming a seiyuu – especially when you contrast that with Sorata’s relative quick success in gaming, something he didn’t even pursue until this year.

      However, I don’t think it’s a dire as you suggest. How many people around the world dream of becoming a professional athlete or idol/rock star/professional musician and fail. A lot. It’s not easy and one can lose a lot of self-confidence, but still the vast majority survive and move on. IMO it’s important that at least she did give it her best shot and can take some solace in that.

      I know someone whose dream was to be an NFL player, despite his mother’s objections, and was scouted by the NFL as a cornerback. During the NFL Combine (nationwide testing for rookies), he was injured (torn hamstring), but two teams told him to rehab and report back once he recovered. He did… and tore the same hamstring again during scouting. That was the end. He never fully recovered and the teams lost interest. I asked him how he was able to deal with that, especially since some of his friends went on to NFL careers. He simply replied, “it was just fate”. He moved on.

      IMO the “Nanami we know” did not “die” nor did “all her dreams and desires” disappear just because she won’t be a seiyuu. Nanami is not so one dimensional. She’s not “the seiyuu named Nanami”, but rather “Nanami who wants to be a seiyuu”. It’s no different that the person I mentioned above. He’s pretty much the same guy (doesn’t party as hard) as he was when on the verge of NFL stardom. He still has many of the same friends (incl. NFL players), but rather than hit the field on Sundays, he now coaches a Pop Warner (grade school) football team, and is happy with his life.

      1. It’s not simply that she’s failed her dream. It’s that her parents are now going to crush any chance she has of ever pursuing another. She has, essentially, lost her chance to be the girl we know, because the very character traits we love so much about her are the things her parents despise, and which they are now going to bring her home and spend the next several years destroying as they force her into the life they THEY intend for her to live. That is why I’m upset: because the Nanami we know is going to die and be replaced by a soulless ideal her parents have that doesn’t possess this annoying “free will” thing.

      2. @Wanderer It’s that her parents are now going to crush any chance she has of ever pursuing another.

        Again, I understand your concern, but personally, I think you are extrapolating things too far. Just because they were against her being a seiyuu doesn’t mean that they necessarily dictate her life from here on. AFAIK, Nanami only said that her parents (father I believe) was against her becoming a seiyuu. She never said “Instead of a seiyuu, my father/parents want me to be a(n) XYZ.”

        IMO, her parents did give her considerable latitude just by permitting her to attend high school away from home and take a chance on her dream. Not every parent would do that. Ideally they would have given financial support (if possible) and let her remain at school to graduate with her friends (the worst part IMO), but at least they let her try. I don’t think it is in Nanami’s best interest to continue pursuing a dream that apparently is out of her reach. Better for her to accept the facts now and move on. JMO.

    4. I honestly think you are exeggarating for no real reason.

      1)There was only a lovetriangle going on in Nanami’s head and in the head of her fans.
      2)She is young, her life is not over and if it is really her dream to become a voice actor, she will try again and again and again.

    5. You’re not wrong when you say that this is Nanami’s bad ending. It does, however, serve both a realistic and thematic purpose – that sometimes shit happens, that sometimes even hard work isn’t enough. Sometimes it works out, like for Sorata – and sometimes you just get crushed.

      …and then, after that, sometimes you pick yourself up, and find something new; or perhaps sink into a pit and never come back out. How a person handles that is a true test of character. Will we see that for Nanami in this show? Don’t know. Given the limited number of episodes, probably not. But I wouldn’t call it a failure on the part of the writer.

    6. What all of the above said – while this may (may!) be her “Bad End” (for now), there’s no evidence that her parents are going to crush all her dreams…and even if they try, she’ll be out of their house in a few years anyway, and able to do whatever she wants with the means at her disposal. It isn’t over for Nanami – this is only the beginning.

      Ohandalso, I wouldn’t look for her to disappear from the story forever, anymore than I would expect Jin to disappear forever when he goes off to college in Osaka. You don’t build up characters this much and then just discard them. Nanami has a further role to play, even if we don’t see it animated (i.e. it only takes place in the light novels).

  14. Well, damn. The fact that Nanami didn’t break down crying and soldiered on only made it worse. Her rejection and her dream collapsing really did leave a dark mood on this episode – especially because unlike Sorata, who could be cheered up when he failed, there is no second chance for her. The only glimmer of hope would be that her parents would have grown to be a bit more understanding and allow her to continue to chase her dream, but they’re just as likely to bring her back with a smug attitude and force her to abandon everything (dunno if the show is as cynical as that, though).

    As for saving the building itself, I wonder what Shiina is up to. She’s been very quiet this episode and seems to be working on something. Is she trying to sacrifice herself, or has she found a third option to save Sakurasou? Ryuunosuke’s website solution is a boon in the signature-collecting, but they need to come up with something truly special if they want to unite the students for their cause. I also liked how Maid and Rita were actually working together for once, and I wonder what Rita is going to do now. Would be nice if she returned somehow.

    Ah, well. Despite the rather cliché plot, I do like this arc better than the previous one, to be honest. The moments where they all get together to work for a common cause and support each other have always been some of the best parts about this show.

  15. I love this show… but I really hope there is not a second season (don’t hate me!). I guess another season might work if there is more manga material to cover but usually heavy romcom/romdramas should not go on too long or it gets frustrating. Adding another season can cause the characters to start acting like idiots in order to move the plot forward (making all these assumptions and fantasies based on “overhearing” things or some other contrived situation that maybe was funny in the first season, but second time around, is a bit stale).

    1. You’re right…but there is more source material to work with. There are currently 8 light novels out, there will be 10 when all is said and done, and we’re somewhere in the 5-6 range. Figure we end with source material up to novel 6, there’d still be 4 more to to go for a second season, provided they give the original creator some time to finish off the last ones.

      Now, that doesn’t mean your concerns won’t come to pass in the source as well…

  16. Alrighty, I really, really liked Nanami. Damn you writers for making a doomed character so worthy of happiness! I was no shipper by any means, but I’d be as good with Sorata ending with her instead of Mashiro. Alas, sometimes someone just has to be rejected and suffer…
    Ryuunosuke, good job on taking the right decision. And Meido-chan, hat off to you for forgetting about enemity toeards Rita for a moment to help your Master. This is where I can indulge in guilty pleasure of shipping of Ryuu X Rita!

  17. This episode was one heavy episode, being real moody and all, and there were a lot of messages that it wanted to convey through these 20+ minutes.

    So the main reason for demolishing Sakurasou was because the school didn’t want to be blamed in the case where Shiina does not express her artistic talent in, well, art. I like how even sensei defended her on that. But, did Shiina really know about that? Her expression suggests that she roughly knows its about her. Honestly speaking, demolishing a building just to avoid blame sounds a bit irresponsible to me. Even with half the crew leaving after the end of the term, it still feels too rushed, especially when people like Ryuunosuke and Shiina have yet to adapt to normal life in the dorms. Their decision is probably not justified.

    One line that Ryuunosuke said that make me think:
    Is the friendship you speak of so weak that it would disappear with the demolition of a single building?
    It makes sense. Of course one day everyone will go away and move on with their lives, in fact, most of them are gonna leave soon. Sorata is quite stubborn in that case, in that he wants everyone there. Saying that because there are friends there is definitely not strong enough a justification to appeal against the demolition of Sakurasou. With or without Sakurasou, they will still always be friends, and will always keep in contact. It’s not like they are leaving far away or transferring schools or anything like that. Although a bit too straightforward, Ryuunosuke really says important stuff when it matters.

    So yeah, another excellent episode. Hopefully the final four will hit unprecedented heights (which is quite difficult for Sakurasou) and end it well. Although it might not end well for Nanami… 🙁

  18. This episode was one heavy episode, being real moody and all, and there were a lot of messages that it wanted to convey through these 20+ minutes.

    So the main reason for demolishing Sakurasou was because the school didn’t want to be blamed in the case where Shiina does not express her artistic talent in, well, art. I like how even sensei defended her on that. But, did Shiina really know about that? Her expression suggests that she roughly knows its about her. Honestly speaking, demolishing a building just to avoid blame sounds a bit irresponsible to me. Even with half the crew leaving after the end of the term, it still feels too rushed, especially when people like Ryuunosuke and Shiina have yet to adapt to normal life in the dorms. Their decision is probably not justified.

    One line that Ryuunosuke said that make me think:

    Is the friendship you speak of so weak that it would disappear with the demolition of a single building?

    It makes sense. Of course one day everyone will go away and move on with their lives, in fact, most of them are gonna leave soon. Sorata is quite stubborn in that case, in that he wants everyone there. Saying that because there are friends there is definitely not strong enough a justification to appeal against the demolition of Sakurasou. With or without Sakurasou, they will still always be friends, and will always keep in contact. It’s not like they are leaving far away or transferring schools or anything like that. Although a bit too straightforward, Ryuunosuke really says important stuff when it matters.

    So yeah, another excellent episode. Hopefully the final four will hit unprecedented heights (which is quite difficult for Sakurasou) and end it well. Although it might not end well for Nanami… 🙁

  19. *Sigh* They handled this perfectly. They really shattered hearts. The way Nanami handled the epic collapse of all her hard work in such a nonchalant way… Ugh…

    But Ryuunosuke brings up a great point. Is it Sakurasou that keeps all the friendships going? Or if they are true friends, will they remain that way living elsewhere? If yes, then what is the point of trying to keep Sakurasou standing? Memories? Well more than half of the residence are indeed moving out. How do they keep those relationships going? Makes for a good conversation.

  20. It’s nice to have Rita back in the story, even though she wasn’t there in person but she’s the main reason that drove Ryuunosuke to help his friends.

    And I know Stilts had endingasm for sure since the ED song blended in so nicely this episode.

    1. You’re damn right! Though J.C. Staff romcoms do that to me so often I’m starting to build up a resistance…though I’m sure the drought I’ll have to endure after this season will help with that.

    1. Alas, while Miyahara seems to be a good guy, just because it would couple everyone up doesn’t mean they’d all be happy. People just aren’t romantically interested in most of the people they meet (IRL, I mean), so it’s completely realistic that she wouldn’t be interested in him. Besides, it’s not like being single = unhappiness 😛

      Not to say that I wouldn’t smile at Miyahara getting the Faramir ending. He does seem like a pretty cool guy, after all.

  21. With all the shipping discussions I thought this was an interesting poll of Japanese otaku (10,000) on who they would like to get Valentine chocolate from: Notice who’s number four and who’s number 27. I had posted this in relation to Hanario but it also has a relationship to this show obviously.

    Top 10
    1. Tomodachi ga Sukunai’s Sena Kashiwazaki
    2. K-ON!’s Ui Hirasawa
    3. K-ON!’s Mio Akiyama
    4. The Pet Girl of Sakurasou’s Nanami Aoyama
    5. Hyouka’s Eru Chitanda
    6. Madoka Magica’s Mami Tomoe
    7. K-ON!’s Azusa Nakano
    8. Bakemonogatari’s Nadeko Sengoku
    9. Working:Wagnaria’s Popura Taneshima
    10. A Certain Scientific Railgun’s Ruiko Saten
    27. Sakurasou’s Mashiro Shiina

    And here’s the full poll

    Otaku Valentine Poll

    1. Actually, the big reason why it’s selling so poorly is a simple change by the studio in episode 6 where Jin cooks sam ye tang (a Korean dish) when Nanami’s sick. I’m not sure what the original dish was but the viewers raised a massive shitstorm about their precious anime being invaded by “Korean filth”.

      They proceeded to spam 1-star ratings on amazon and the rest is history. It’s unfortunate because it’s definitely a quality show that deserves much more than a little under 2K.

      Hopefully it doesn’t screw over it chances of a second season too bad…

    2. Apparently they changed Okayu to a Korean dish is probably because one of the main sponsor for the anime is a Korean company. They wanted J.C. staff to change it back to Okayu, but that wasn’t the case, and things gone worse.

      My country have the same issue, if something like this happen, everyone will do anything to destroy the product’s image, I understand how they feel, but Sakurasou is innocent.

  22. I skimmed the comments and I don’t think anyone mentioned this, but Meido-chan was made just when Sorata moved into Sakurasou so unless Ryuunosuke detailed it on his computer or something how did she know about his past in such detail.

    1. Given Meido-chan’s level of autonomy, and the Dragon’s genius, I would have no problem considering that he discussed his reasons for developing her as a screen from the outside world, including his past. She’s someone he can talk to that reflects his intelligence and has become fiercely protective of him. She exists. What Meido-chan seems to be learning is that opening up to others allows even more acceptance, even given the risks involved in being hurt. I think she and Rita will do well, and Dragon had better watch out when the ‘girls’ start plotting!

  23. A couple of things. First, Shiina is at a canvas, possibly going to paint something fabulous to show that the school isn’t affecting her art. Second, who is in the background putting the bug in the administration’s ear about Shiina? Third, my small about of reading about the LN indicates that the school might have a point, since her grades are poor, though whether that is the reason pressure is brought bear or not, I don’t know. Finally, it seems that if we finish the season at year-end, how on earth can the authors wrap things up in this final short time span without making it look like Sorata was just waiting until Nanami leaves before he confesses to Shiina? That’s cold, man, and it brings everything to a screeching halt. Doesn’t make sense. Maybe her ‘Domo’ to Miyahara is the show’s ‘out’ move for fans. One more cour! One more cour! One more cour! One more cour! Fujisawa, use your influence to get Nanami an internship!!! I’m going crazy here! Finish the series with Fujisawa and Chihiro-sensei holding hands… Too little time and too much to do without looking rushed.

    1. Agree. But… He’s developing a game, a professional relationship with Fujisawa, a relationship with Shiina, and still going to school. I just don’t see him making a sudden life decision about Shiina in the middle of all this commotion that has to be crammed into one or two episodes along with all the rest of the stuff. Another cour allows us to see him come to grips with all that. More spotlight on that if Jin and Misaki are gone, so more time to come to grips with the relationship and his future. I can dream, can’t I???

  24. To me, it seems pretty obvious that Mashiro will be the one who saves Sakura Hall (but then I’ve been tricked several times this series already so nothing is for certain). The higher-ups are worried that Sakura Hall is a bad influence on Mashiro? Prove them wrong! I think Mashiro will work on a painting based on Sakura Hall that will be so great, the higher ups will be pretty much forced to keep Mashiro at Sakura Hall.

  25. Nanami has really grown on me lately. I’ve fallen in love with her sincerity, kindness and, above all else, cuteness. How she handled her situation post rejection in this episode is a testament to that.

  26. I’m become a little tired about all this Nanami vs Mashiro thing. Both are beautiful and awesome girls. Just want to say some words:

    – Whenever a girl comes to Sorata in an affectionate mode (and this only applies to Yuuko and Nanami), Mashiro starts a series of statements that makes it clear the kind of relationship she wish (or imagine) between them.

    – But when Sorata got angry because “he was the first” Mashiro took responsibility and went to Nananmi to “clear the air.”

    – When Nanami was hesitating about moving to Sakurasou, it was the misunderstanding that Mashiro started the final blow to make the decision come (because it was the best for Nanami).

    – Nanami becomes sick, and the only one able to understand her situation was Mashiro. She even lowered her head to the others (an act equivalent to fall to your knees), the ultimate surrender for the sake of Nanami.

    – Moreover, on Valentine’s day Sorata was expecting a gift from Mashiro, but nothing from Nanami. He went to rescue her because it was an important day, but his thoughts were all the time on Mashiro.

    Yes, Mashiro is a genius artist, but not an idiot person. I think she has a golden heart…

  27. And yes, Nanami has had a big blow. But a girl with such a strong will can not be overwhelmed by such a thing. Yes, you lost a battle, but you still can win the war. Expect a big comeback…

    Mark my words.

  28. I’m glad the series is ending as I feel after watching from the start that length can ruin a series and it is happening with this as it’s story is not long enough. as in it should of been a 12 episode series. sorata has become a genetic male lead. nanami just got in the way of mashiro and sorata. so dragged it out unnecessarily. they ruined jin as his reasons for not going out with misaki were laughable.

  29. The way Nanami handled her situation was admirable (that scene was quite painful, if only the writers didn’t make her adorable, ugh). If she was a captain, I would be willing to follow her orders to the very end. I don’t think this setback will break her; it’ll make her only stronger.

  30. Dunno if you’re still watching it Stilts, but something from the latest episode of Love Live that struck me as a particularly fitting counter to the themes within Sakurasou:

    “I’d do what I want if it could get me anywhere”.

    Not giving up is a very admirable trait. But how can one tell if they’re not trying hard enough- or simply wasting their time? How can one tell the difference?

    How many failures can one endure?

    Dreams are very much like jobs (and- in some cases- literally are); People often aspire to the same things- but there are only a certain number of spots. Some achieve and reach their goals- but others get cast aside.

    For Nanami’s case- Voice acting has been a lifelong dream. And she didn’t make the cut. It’s obviously been a major motivation for her, and she’s suddenly lost that. Does she try again? Or would it be wiser to accept defeat, and redirect her efforts elsewhere?

    How can one bury their dreams, when often dreams are the only purpose one can find in life?

    What else is there?


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