「てるてるぼうずを作った」 (Teru Teru Bouzu wo Tsukutta)
“I Made a Teru Teru Bozu”

While the past three episodes may have been pretty good, this week’s episode was hands down the best one thus far. Combining all the fantastic elements of a great slice-of-life, this week’s episode hit both all ends of the emotion spectrum. From a fantastic high that had me grinning from ear to ear to a surprising low with a surprise that had a few tears running down my cheek, I don’t think I could have asked for any more.

Teru Teru Bozu

If there’s something I can appreciate in a slice-of-life, it’s when they adequately explain any cultural elements that could fly over anyone’s head. In this week’s episode, we got to see firsthand the power of the Teru Teru Bozus. Shaped like a ghost and typically made from tissue paper or cotton, these cute dolls are supposed to bring the sun out when hung on a rainy day. While I can’t comment on their size-to-efficiency ratio, you can bet I won’t pass up an opportunity to see Ren-chon do her thing. Looking more like a monster out of a picture book than an actual Teru Teru Bozu, it wasn’t too surprising to see someone getting scared by her outfit. Sure, it sucks that Koma-chan once again ends up drawing the short stick, but there was no denying how funny it was to see her reaction to everything. Poor Koma-chan!

The Cycle of Life and Death

As I said in the opening paragraph, the latter half of the episode caught me completely off guard. I remember when I was younger I had a pair of fish I took care of and when they finally passed away, I remember I was bawling like a baby. Yes, they were just fish that I couldn’t even interact with, but there’s just something really freaking sad about seeing something you care about suddenly just disappear. In Ren-chon’s case, when the realization of what happened to her tadpole shrimp hit her I could just feel this surge of sadness smack me right in the face. Combined with the touching background music and symbolism of all that rain representing how she felt on the inside, it was getting really tough for me to maintain my composure. Toss in that picture she drew when I thought that just maybe she was okay and not just holding it all in and I was on the verge of tears.

But that’s nothing compared to how the show managed to turn all of that into an immense feeling of happiness. In one fell swoop, the story managed to show that life isn’t just about death but also life and somehow transformed all that sadness into a feeling of pure elation. Through Natsumi’s simple act of thoughtfulness, she managed to both liven up and get a few tears of happiness out of Ren-chon and myself. Something I consider a pretty big accomplishment when Renge (and myself to an extent) is definitely the type of person who doesn’t let her non-happy emotions show all that often.

Looking Ahead

After all of that, I’m not sure if my emotions could handle another rough beating like that. While I wouldn’t actually mind another super touching episode, I have an odd feeling that next week’s episode is going to take things easy. Based off of the preview, it looks like things are going to be a pretty lively at the school pool and for those of you who’ve ever eaten Okonomiyaki, you know just how much you happiness and regret is involved after you eat the whole thing.

Catch you next week!




  1. I can’t deny I got teary-eyed a bit over some tadpole shrimps. I’m even more impressed how Renge is able to hold back bawling. She just simply drew what she feels. She just gives off that aura of someone mature and wise beyond her years. Her idea to be a bigger Teru Teru Bouzu so the sun can see her, while sounding a bit silly, comes off as pretty sensible coming from a child. Really it’s just fun seeing what this kid is going to think of next. And yes I can’t stress enough how awesome Natsumi was in that scene. She may not be the smartest of the bunch but here she showed how caring she can be.

  2. The second half with the shrimp really hit in the feels. My father always mentions one of the best things for children to have is a pet they love and care for, there is no better way to learn about life and death and the many moments of happiness and sadness which accompany it. Whether it is a fish, puppy, or kitten, caring for the well being of another creature will ground you in reality, one way or another. To put it in perspective my family is now on to our third generation of pets, I know Renge’s emotions here quite well 😛

    Probably one of the best SoL episodes ever as of late, NNB for whatever reason has managed to nail the atmosphere and simplicity almost perfectly.

  3. That frog song though, lol! I wondered if it was some folk children’s song in Japan (Like Mary Had a Little Lamb or something of the sort)- and if so which clever, embittered parent decided to equate parts of a frog’s life cycle to certain less than pleasant aspects of certain phases of child-raising…and then taught it to their clueless seven year old as some kind of cruel ironic joke…what a troll parent, haha…

  4. What an episode! Even if I could see where the first half was headed, I was still cracking up at Koma-chan’s expense. Then that second half rolls in with a wave of feels. I also got a little teary-eyed when they died, but smiled after seeing what Natsumi had been up to.

    We got a Dagashiya cameo, hopefully she will play a more prominent role soon. Her interactions with Ren-chon in the first season were great.

    As an aside, Renge’s self-portraits are really good, especially given her age and how quickly she drew them.

  5. I know it’s been implied for a while but is Hotaru gay for Komari? Or is it just infatuation with a girl who she think is cute lol

    Definitely a better episode than the previous 3. Honestly thought 1st season was better but this was a bit better. Glad to see the candy shop owner (Rina Satou) get some lines, was craving to hear her voice.

    1. I’ve always interpreted Hotaru’s crush as a childlike type- she looks up to Komari, and idolises her. Of course there is the aspect of her seeing Komari as cute, but as I said, I think it’s more a innocent feeling rather than something more akin to a romantic crush.

  6. Cracking episode, swinging from hilarity to sadness to bittersweet joy without feeling out of place.

    NNB would be so much different without Ren-chon. Way back in season 1, with the camera panning on her sadness at the sudden departure of her new found friend, I knew this was not just “another SoL”, but probably one of the best SoL out there. This episode has done it again.

    Credit to writer Yoshida Reiko, who is no stranger to adapting fine SoL, including K-ON, Tamako Market and Hanayamata.

  7. Man, this episode reminded me of episode 5 of the first season of Ika Musume…First half was quite funny, then came the mini-Squid Girl short in the latter half and boom, my happy feelings went down south. And yet I watched it for the second time, and yet again later on. It was also the same with episode 4 of NNB’s first season, watching Renge-chon almost bursting to tears for the first time is heartwrenching. Ah, experiencing such a cathartic feeling again in NNB is quite a blessing indeed.


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