「萌黄の灯」 (Moegi no Akari)
The aftermath is always a little slow… but that just means more time for character development – for Mitsuki!
My favorite character thus far finally gets a bit more screen time and it’s nothing short of being a little depressing, yet hopeful. I can’t describe my feelings for Mitsuki very well, but I find her rather complicated and intriguing even though she’s a girl with few words. She’s the type to bottle up a lot of feelings and she goes along with the rules that are set for her… probably because she feels obligated by her heritage and clan. There are no signs of her parents either which leaves the impression that she’s been raised by her sister and brother. It makes me feel empathetic towards Mitsuki because I understand what it’s like to feel alone (but I’m sure everyone does). We’re born alone and we die alone right? That’s a rather pessimistic view on life though and that slight change in attitude from Mitsuki really shines through at the end with the help of Mirai. I don’t think anyone can really shake the feeling of isolated and deserted sometimes. Despite having a lot of friends or no friends, no one really knows what you’re going through because your experiences are your own. The best that we can hope for is someone that listens and helps you understand that you’re not the only one that feels this way. This episode sums up very well that both Mitsuki and Akihito feel alone due to their situations, but no one should ever feel like they have to carry that burden on their own. I think Mirai implies that very well in the end when everyone comes together for fireworks. It’s a nice touch of hope that signifies that they have each other and that’s something to be grateful for.
Mitsuki and Akihito actually parallel each other very well this episode. They both have issues that they’re struggling with internally that they don’t want to talk about because other people depend on them. In both cases, Mirai is involved – Akihito wants Mirai to join their club at school and Mitsuki is trying to help her find a job. It’s ironic because in the end, I think Mirai acts as a catalyst that helps both of them come to terms with themselves. This is seen more in Mirai’s interactions with Mitsuki (especially with the lantern festival) this episode, but no doubt Mirai and Akihito will also help each other come to appreciate what they are. It’s a shame because while I think Mitsuki and Akihito make a great couple (and I always cheer for the underdogs), it’s obvious that Mirai and Akihito are meant to be. Mitsuki and Akihito are like the childhood friends that watch over one another but will never truly be together because they can’t help better each other. I think Mirai is that better half for Akihito.
Hiroomi is also that “other guy” who I think deserves more attention. He’s pretty unique (and perverted) in his own way and he screams for an individual episode just to dive into his history and character thoughts. As strong as he is, it doesn’t mean much for me right now because he still feels like a secondary character compared to a primary one. If it were up to me, I’d like to see more of his relationship with his sister (possibly why he has a sister complex?) and where he sits in his books with Izumi. While Mitsuki and Hiroomi seem to be more on the same page, Izumi looks like she has her own agenda. She’s also apparently the figurehead of the Nase clan so whatever goes on within the boundaries of the city are within her control. That doesn’t explain all the plot-scheming and secrets though… I don’t make her out as an antagonist yet, but she’s not doing Mirai any favors.
In the end, every character gets a little bit more unveiled as we come closer to the half-season mark. Sakura gets a split second, indicating that she’s still alone and killing youmu. She doesn’t get it evaluated for money though, but it looks like her weapon grows with every youmu that she kills? Interesting approach. Shizuku is also not quite who she appears to be… I always imagined her as this strong female character, but to see her eager to finally date someone is a twist – unfortunately that guy never shows up! Psh… men. But this also ties in to the theme that everyone is alone one way or another. Mirai also finds a job to help her pay for rent and food – but for some extra dough, she’s dressing up for photos to be sold to Akihito! Oh dear, that’s terribly awkward. It’s all about supply and demand though, if there’s a demand for it, you know someone’s going to be selling it.
TL;DR – @RCCherrie: The aftermath is always slow… But glad it focuses on character development instead ^^ gotta love the canon latern festivals #kyo_kai