「交錯する光と影」 (Kousaku Suru Hikari to Kage)
“The Interplay of Light and Shadow”
This second episode was a lot better paced with Ryou and Megumi battling it out over ramen. Ramen is like my absolute favorite! Asides from eating sashimi/sushi, I actually love a good bowl of ramen when I go out. Like Erina mentioned in the episode, ramen has become such a worldwide phenomenon that you can’t avoid the craze and joy of eating a hot bowl of noodles. Where I’m from, there’s tons of line-ups and mountains of people (almost) every day during dinner hours and especially when there’s a grand opening. There are even several worldwide chains available here which are incredibly popular. I love the ramen shops which allow for customization like more/less fatty soup, or chicken/pork soup options. My favorite places though, has to be the ones that give you ALL the toppings – from seaweed, to pork shoulder to bamboo to egg and the corn! I love corn! I also tend to go for the chewier and thinner noodles than the fat ones; the fat ones remind of instant noodles in packages but I’ll always eat the dish the way it’s meant to be served if there’s a chef recommendation. I can go on for ages about ramen (makes my mouth salivate =X) but let’s move on to the actual show now. If anyone else is as passionate about ramen as I am… please let me know.
Following-up last week’s episode, Alice breaks down into tears losing to Souma which is to be expected since she was the top of her group. She’s still miles away from reaching Erina’s potential but you see a bit of envy from Erina’s point of view as well while she’s maintaining her façade. Given her character, Erina feels like Alice is given more freedom to behave and act the way she wants without the judgment from others that she receives. Alice is an interesting character as she behaves differently in front of everyone this week. While she has a newfound respect for Souma and his cooking, she’s still determined to be on the Top 10 and best Erina. It’s her relationship with Ryou that’s interesting to me – he seemed to have more respect for her during the earlier episodes when we first met the pair. In this episode though, it seems like she looks up to him more now and has a lot more confidence in his abilities. Their history was nice to see as we only got glimpses of it before. Their chibi characters were so cute! I thought Ryou’s tough and crazy demeanor only emerged when he was cooking, but his attitude as a child towards Alice wasn’t very sweet either. Maybe he learned to calm himself down over the years and only comes full force through his cooking now.
Either way, I liked seeing the contrast between both Megumi and Ryou’s cooking this week. They both come from a fishing port village background where they handled seafood since they were young. Whereas Ryou seemed very confrontable in the kitchen as an early age, Megumi really grew into her role. You really see the development in Megumi’s character from season 1 to now (almost instantaneously). She went from a timid girl with weak self-esteem, to this calm and collected competitor in this challenge and all I’m thinking is, ”Where did that come from?” I’m proud of Megumi and she still remains one of my favorites but I was just surprised to see her progress so quickly in a blink of an eye. It’s amazing to see what she came up with though from her hometown ingredients (how convenient of her mom’s package). Ryou on the other hand, hasn’t really developed that much as a character to me; nor has he grown on me, but he is the favorite to win in my opinion. I think it’s mainly due to this experience on-the-job and being able to be creative with his cooking. I love Megumi and I do think she’s come a long way… but would it really make for an interesting show if she made it through again? Seems a bit predictable.
The Jojo references in this episode were a nice add and I think the pacing this week was ten times better than last week’s. At least it wasn’t all said and done in on episode which makes me wonder if this cour really will just cover the end of this arc. Regardless, if the competition continues up with one battle a week, that means that next week’s match-up will be Hisako vs. Akira… and the topic is still unknown so we’ll have to wait and see. Oh that’s an interesting match-up – medicinal recipes vs. strong fragrant aromas. Given that I don’t know much about Hisako at all, she might actually prove to be a good adversary for Akira. Ryou and Megumi were a good choice to match-up since they both excel with seafood-based dishes, and given that that their backgrounds are also so different, the effort and abilities in their cooking also vary. We’ll just have to wait and see if its light or dark soup that wins. I would’ve personally chosen Ryou’s dish for kicks because it seems like the more adventurous choice if I only could have one.
Bottom Line – @RCCherrie: With Ryou against Megumi… I would LIKE to see Megumi win, but it seems like a tough call. Some Ryou backstory this week and lots of Alice too! Not that Ryou is a very complex character…
ED: 「スノードロップ」 (Snow Drop) by nano.RIPE
Alice is nothing short of awesome 🙂 … how can you not love her?
What I particularly like about her is her genuine openness. She tells it like she sees it, she holds her ambition and is walking her path, but she doesn’t hold grudges to people who fairly beat her. Besides, she is interesting _and_ she is hot.
What’s not to like?
I think Megumi is such an amazing Chef when she’s feeling confident. I never actually believed she needed Somas help from the start, she just needed to have more faith in herself and her own abilities and she more than earns her place at the school.
It’s kind of cute that they got to reuse Delinquent Megumi from Isshiki’s dream during the resort camp.
Megumi’s character arc could be described as ‘a really good tryer’; she’s growing and evolving into this dried/preserved food expert, which is great. But I don’t think we’ll see another upset like Souma versus Alice. And of course the OP is really hyping Ryou here.
One thing that seemed kind of odd was Ryou implying that Alice never beat him when they were talking between matches, where I seemed to remember that in the manga it was HER that spent most of their time winning. I could be mistaken.
that moment when sh!t gets real and it goes JOJO…hahaha!
Yikes. A full 3 days after it’s airing.
I liked this ep slightly more than the season premiere. The pacing was a bit better, and we got a lot more delicious character moments!
I mentioned in the first episode that I’m notorious at blogging weekend shows -.-‘ Unfortunately I will continue to be delayed with these posts unless someone takes over… *cross fingers* I am hopeful.
Megumi might be more confident than when she first met Souma…
She still have a ways to go :>
It’s one of those moments that would make you cheer her on if you were in the crowd lol.
all I’m thinking is, ”Where did that come from?” I’m proud of Megumi and she still remains one of my favorites but I was just surprised to see her progress so quickly in a blink of an eye
I don’t think we can really say it was “in a blink of an eye”. The fact is that Megumi has actually been through a lot more than the average member of their batch. She had a Shokugeki with a a former first Seat and had to prepare dishes for the alumni who was pretty much the top of their batch. Basically, the point they’ve been trying to make is that she has the potential but not really the self confidence to bring out that potential and through out season 1 she slowly and steadily gained that potential.
Of course that pretty much apply to cooking so far and you can see that her worry wart personality and generally low self confidence outside of the kitchen is still there. I think she is basically like Hinako as we’ve seen glimpses of her school life and where she ended up eventually.
Man, I really love how J.C. Staff nailed the JoJo reference. Gureto daze.
I’d like to eat Megumi’s ramen as breakfast and Ryou’s ramen as dinner. *chew*
It’s also pretty interesting that Megumi made a season that reflavors the dish for a second, greater impact. Just like Ryo did with the lobster tomalley in his curry.
She really is stepping up to battle him on all fronts. So proud.
Megumi’s challenge in Season 1 was the most effective for me, and I pretty much cried by the end. Seeing her improve means so much. :3 You go Megumi!
Love how Megumi, once the “weakling” of Tootsuki, is finally able to stand toe-to-toe with the best of the tenth-graders (of course, she already is that good; she just needed some confidence boost). Win or lose, she’s already a winner to the hearts of many.
Also love how Okamoto Nobuhiko gets typecast into cool crazy guys: Accelerator, Akabane Karma, and here, Kurokiba.
Speaking as a manga reader, Erina is not just jealous of Alice because she has more freedom to express herself.
Show Spoiler ▼
“ED: 「スノードロップ」 (Snow Drop) by nano.RIPE”
…alright, I’m on board.
I’ve always thought that the studio was spot on with its opening and endings for this series. I loved “Spice” too.
This is the best Megumi-centric episode yet. She’s still her with all the anxious side but she sure grows so much and tough up enough to talk back at Ryou.
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> There are even several worldwide chains available here
Depends if you think the “world” is more than USia + UK, if you dont then you’re wrong. I know for a fact, there is not a single one “worldwide” ramen in my country. We got sushi\rolls out the wazoo, that’s about it. It’s like i once heard on BBC radio that the guy from the KFC logo was the most recognizable man in the world, which is, naturally, utter bullshit.
I dunno about worldwide chains, but I have places like Teri Cafe where I’m at that serves up a great bowl of ramen, and their sushi is good too. The teriyaki chicken they take their name from, hilariously, is crap.
There’s one that I can think of that’s available in the US, Canada, Japan and other Asian countries.
It’s called Hokkaido Ramen Santouka =) It’s good, long lineups though and I don’t know where else it’s available but I would say that being in Asia and North America constitutes it as a good chain and if they can branch out to Europe, that’s even better.