「プリンと美月の決意／桜Trick」 (Purin to Mitsuki no Ketsui / Sakura Trick)
“Pudding and Mitsuki’s Decision / Sakura Trick”
The two sister yuri love triangle comes to a head as the sakura petals fall.
As what basically amounted to the last hurrah of gags before the series came to a close, the graduation party had a fitting “ending” feel to it. It was immediately nostalgic, as Mitsuki & Rina’s graduation signaled our graduation from this show, and let us enjoy all of the girls being themselves one last time – with an undercurrent of emotions running through it. From Sumisumi’s moustache fascination to one last Mikan-san joke, they were strong jokes at the end. I’m a sucker for sakura-colored graduations, and this party + the second half had that instant nostalgia fuel in spades.
One of the biggest surprises this episode was Kaede. I was totally stoked when I saw the impersonation in the preview last week, and we got into it and it was funny, and then what the heck Kaede is crying!? Now, for my money I wanted to see what Yuzu and her talked about – I feel like these two lacked development, even if they truly aren’t the yuri couple I wish them to be – but sometimes it’s the yuri you don’t see that’s the most tantalizing, eh? That, plus Kaede crying one more time later on, and the oddly wistful (or bashful?) look she had on her face at the end makes me think something is going on there…but from now on, I guess that’ll only exist in my dreams. Nothing dirty though. Okay, nothing too dirty.
These Sisters Are So Alike
As if it wasn’t clear before, these sisters are so alike! From the pudding on down, they’ve made a strong case for why Mitsuki fell for Haruka by Yuu already liking Haruka and Mitsuki liking all the same things as Yuu. Yes, there’s a difference between pudding and love – though not as many as you might think – but that made the love triangle work a little better for me.
The one place they’re different, though, is that Mitsuki knows her own mind. Eventually. I guess she didn’t know it at all for the longest time, but when she made that leap, she went all in. I was totally jealous of Haruka when she was blissfully enjoying being fought over by two sisters, but then Mitsuki breaks them up and confesses!? Damn girl! This love triangle is coming to a head!
Haruka Doesn’t Understand Love
From my past experience, both personally and in others, I find that high schoolers tend to jump to love too quickly. They don’t have all the
scars painful life experiences they’re not appropriately jaded they don’t have their defenses up because they haven’t been hurt before. That made it all the stranger that Haruka told Mitsuki she loved her – be still, my beating heart! I thought they really were going to go down the harem route there! – only for Mitsuki to realize that Haruka doesn’t understand love. Then what was all that with Yuu all this time!?
On further thought though, it makes a sort of sense. I shouldn’t conflate my own personal and observed experience with the only way to do things, and besides, there’s an added vector – they’re both girls. Crossing from a close female friendship to love has to be a blurrier line than it is between men and women or two men, just by the nature of close female relationships. At least, the ones that aren’t acrimonious…girls can be mean!.
“This time, it wasn’t an accident.”
Whatever the case, it’s clear that Mitsuki got shot down. She did show her onee-chan credentials when, in addition to being elegant while being shot down, she chooses a parting gift that doesn’t end up with her taking more from her imouto’s girlfriend than she should have. What I’m trying to say is, if she stole a kiss on the lips now, that would have been not cool. She deserved something though, and that was a beautiful way for that possibility to disappear.
Not that Mitsuki is without options. There are flags going off all over Rina, and they’re going to the same college together. I’ll still be secretly wishing that the Yuu x Haruka x Mitsuki OT3 gets revived at some point, but good luck Rina. You still have a shot.
Yuu-chan Doesn’t Understand Love Either
I was getting ready to say that Yuu is unlucky with all the dense women around her, but no, she’s one of them too. The whole scene in the sakura-covered classroom had a nice atmosphere, though I felt they dragged on their exploration and confusion a bit long. But Yuu and Haruka both said they loved each other, and they kissed more, and that embarrassment afterwards hnnnnnggg!! A good ending, I think, even if they’re still both bakas.
A Sakura Trick
Some things change, and some things don’t. The whole gang is still together, but Haruka and Yuu are being a little more open about their relationship, as they go to school amid the sakura petals once again. A nice ending, with just a touch of magic. That’s how a yuri anime should end.
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – The love triangle comes to a head & is resolved as some of our girls graduate, & they all grow up #桜Trick 12 END
- Hair swish! Taking care of long hair is a pain, but it’s awesome at times like that.
- One thing I loved was how Kaede and Yuzu came back in, ready to try again on the impersonations, but Mitsuki said it wasn’t necessary. She’s so kind ;_;
Check out my blog about storytelling and the novel I’m writing at stiltsoutloud.com. The last four posts: Right, not best, Three lessons from the editing desk, The easiest to not do, and Realism, cynicism, & the unreasonable man.
Sakura Trick was one of the two surprise hits (along with Mikakunin de Shinkoukei) that I picked up this season. I was trying to dial it back you guys, but after Sakura Trick exploded onto the screen with multiple yuri kisses in the first episode, how could I not? Yuri shows are usually more subtle, all innuendo and hints, while they hardly ever show them doing the deed. I couldn’t not blog this kind of goodness!
As it turns out, Mikakunin de Shinkoukei had a more in common with Sakura Trick than I expected. Both started out very strong, mostly because of misplaced expectations – in this case, most of us assumed it was a regular yuri show, not a lusty yuri show. A good mistake to make, I feel, because it made the first half of the series a constant stream of awesome. But both shows ended up weaker in the second half as the rapid pace of kisses or revelations evened out, and we were forced to get by on lighter faire. It never got bad, though there was the odd episode that felt almost entirely life fluff, but the stretching started to show. Perhaps this would have been better as a 10-episode series, though if they had developed some of the other characters (especially Yuzu and Kaede) more, and brought in ones like Rina and Sumisumi earlier, it might have worked better. Still, I can’t complain.
Another pleasant surprise was the animation style. With use of stylistic cuts reminiscent of director Ishikura Kenichi’s work on Hidamari Sketch (I’m told…I’ll get to it eventually) or the more recent Acchi Kocchi, it made for a visually diverse experience. They also never skimped on anything, whether it was animation (especially on the kisses) or all the seiyuu’s skills in bringing their characters to life. A good all-around effort from Ishikura-san’s team over at Studion Deen.
In the end, this was an uncomplicated show, but an enjoyable one. Though I managed to write thousands of words about it – but I think we can all agree that I’m nuts – it’s not a series that needed to be thought about too deeply. We’re here for the cute girls kissing each other, and that’s what we got. After all, cute girls ought to be together, don’t you think?