「はばたきのとき」 (Habataki no Toki)
“It’s Time To Fly”
After the second year’s slight stumble last week, this week’s episode did a great job at not only turning that around but using everything that’s happened thus far to give us one hell of a payoff. Also, I would have named this episode “OH MY GOD” if I was given the opportunity. #ITJOKE
The Road to Love Live
Something funny I found out while talking about Sunshine with my friends is that they didn’t realize just what Love Live meant or was. Thinking it was simply the name of the show (and game), when I told them that the actual event everyone’s competing to perform and win at is the “Love Live”, I was a little shocked with the reaction they gave me.
Anyways, getting back on topic, I’m really happy that Aqours has finally found their muse (bad pun, activated!). Seeing how a major recurring topic throughout the entire season has been trying to find confidence in yourself, I loved how the show took all the crap everyone had to deal with and turned it into something amazing. Sure, you could say in hindsight that this was a pretty obvious outcome, but hindsight it 20/20 and I think the magic comes from actually seeing it all play out. This whole time, I think it’s been pretty obvious that Aqours has been drawing their inspiration from µ’s. Be it their mannerisms, songs choices, or even outfits there’s no denying that µ’s served as a platform for Aqours. And when you really think about it, there are probably tons of various school idol groups that Chika and the gang could have picked from to get inspiration from. Which is precisely why the decision to finally move forward and not chase at µ’s coattails made me so freaking happy.
Before Sunshine even started, I was afraid it would turn into a basic µ’s clone that would be fun to watch but not the show I really wanted. And ever since its second episode (the first wasn’t the best if we’re being honest), it’s been showing us time after time that Aqours and all of its members are their own unique entity. And while the members of Aqours may have not seen it, I’m glad that Chika put in the time and effort to realize that they’re fine just the way they are. Boy, if only you guys could have seen how happy I was when the camera panned over Chika’s empty wall at the end of the episode.
After double checking the episode count, I can’t believe the first season of Sunshine is coming to a close next week. I haven’t really looked to see if a second season has been confirmed, but I’m praying it does. Seeing how far we’ve come since it was just Chika and You trying to get Aqours established, it would be a damn shame not to see the end of Aqours’ story. And the best part? Seeing how they’re not following in µ’s footsteps anymore, maybe they’ll be able to steal a Love Live victory on their first try.
In any case, I’ll catch you guys next week when we’ll all probably be a little emotional. Until then, make sure to
add me on SIF EN if you’re a player! I don’t have a lot of space at the moment, but if you shoot me a message or a tweet at @rctakaii, I’ll make sure to add you!
- Insert Song: No New Insert Song This Week ):
- Man, seeing the UTX meeting room was awesome.
- OTONOKIZAKA GAKUIN!
- GDI. I love all of Aqours all so much – it’s too hard to put them in a list! My favorites are probably still Maru-chan, Kanan, and You even though the rest are all so good (Riko jumped up quite a bit with that development of hers). I guess Maru-chan is my guilty favorite while Kanan and You are the moms of the group (Dia is also a mom I guess, but in a different way). Plus you have ITJOKE-chan, GAH. And you can’t forget the Dark Angel-chuan, Ganbaruby-kun, and Leader-tan. Hard life man.
- I forgot to touch on it in the post, but I’m loving how 0 has been used over and over to remind us just how tough of a road Aqours really has.
OH MY GOD! Even Mari’s using Joseph Joestar’s favorite catch phrase!
With that out of the way:
– Had a good laugh at Yoshiko…err…Yohane‘s “Previously on…” skit. Also, that scene where Aqours becomes more recognizable to the public after that PV, especially the bit with Dia and Ruby.
– I just knew that Dia and Ruby were expecting to meet a (former) member (or members) of μ’s, and by all rights I would have squee’d with the two if that was the case. But I’m somewhat glad that the μ’s girls didn’t show up.
– It would be awesome if Aqours actually managed to win the Love Live by next episode, though I also wouldn’t mind seeing more of Aqours’ performances and such in a second season. Yeah, they totally grew on me, even Chika.
If Aqours won the entire Love Live next week, I’d probably table flip my actual table.
So Chika realizes that if she and her group want to accomplish their ultimate idol goal, they have to stop being just a µ’s-inspired group and be their very selves. Nice to see some nostalgia and shout-outs from the original anime. I swear, that loli Honoka must be the love child of Honoka and Tsubasa. That Otonokizaka third year girl is a very sweet informant. So Saint Snow are the new idols of UTX. I am still waiting for their third member, though.
Now time for my favorite parts. Riko sure loves doujins about girls falling in love for walls… I mean other girls.
Oops, I posted it unfinished. Anyway, Riko should be more careful not letting Chika see them next time. Kanan cannot just stop being sexy all the time, even undressing right in front of Chika. And Mari’s Engrish is the best! OH MY GOD! That sleeping in a train moment has lots of shipping vibes: DiaRuby, KananMari, YoshiMaru, and YouRiko. Poor Chika being the ninth wheel most of the time like her idol Honoka.
Rin-Hanayo love child?! Mini Honoka?!
Y U NO CAMEO μ’s?
Also saw someone theorize that that’s actually Kotobirb.
Yeah! I’ve heard that people are postulating that the girl is supposed to be birb. Especially since it’s only been one year since Muse won, it’s possible?
Adorable Honorin baby is adorable.
It’s at least 5 years since muse won. You (i think) had a magazine which mentioned the 5 year anniversary since muse wining Love Live.
Sunshine 12 is by far the best episode ever. It is a direct continuation and conclusion to Chika’s passionate speech given in episode 3.
With this, Aqours comes into being as it’s own and a rightful successor to Muse. The fault with Aqours thus far was to be someone who they were not and to tie themselves to a past that started it all. Sure pioneers are seen as trail blazers in their endeavours but for the successive generations to get tied down by the deeds and achievements of the pioneers is sheer foolishness.
To learn from history is to learn about our actions, to persistently hold on to it brings regret and the feeling of inadequacy. The prologue Aqours’ story has ended and now a new chapter begins.
The future is bright and yours for the taking.
On other fronts –
El Psy Congroo
I believe that the Honoka has mastered the science of time travel through the use of songs much like how Okabe Rintaro mastered time travelling using phone microwave.
Let’s take Muse as Alpha world line and Aqours as the Beta world line. Already in the Aplha world line, we got time traveller Honoka talking to Alpha Honoka. Now, in Sunshine, Honoka has travelled to become Beta Honoka or Loli Honoka while Alpha Honoka has also brought Alpha RinPana’s daughter over to the Beta world line to give advice to Aqours.
If not, how would you explain their sudden dissappearance?
I AM MAD SCIENTIST! I’M SO COOL… Sunavabitch
El Psy Congroo
Also, Alpha RinPana daughter’s speech was a loaded one. It’s Sunrise’s way of telling the fans that Muse will not be appearing in Aqours although… Love Livers on FB did mention that Muse had an appearance, in the form of 9 birds when they panned the camera to Oto’s roof top.
Speaking as a Love Liver or if I’m reading too much into it, Sunshine 12 is Sunrise’s way to say it’s thanks to Love Livers who have supported Muse and have also accepted Aqours in Love Live. Aqours bowing and saying thanks to where it all started closes the chapter on Muse and starts the chapter on Aqours proper
EL PSY CONGROO
By the way Takaii… Beta world line Honoka aka loli Honoka and Alpha world line RinPana daughter aside… You forgot the 3rd most important screenshot…
That scene where Alpha Honoka spiritually passes the baton to Chika at the train station where Muse concluded!
That lonely feeling after seeing LL! ending each season is here again, sigh.
This episode has a lot of things to talk about. I missed Otonokizaka and I’m glad we’re able to see it again. I was also hoping as much as the Kurosawa sisters to see a member of µ’s as well, haha. Well, we did see a mini-Honoka who looks like a mix of Honoka and Tsubasa. So I’ll be satisfied for now. 🙂
Someone did pointed out that the train stop and the beach was the same place where µ’s decided to disband their group. Now it’s the place where Aquors find their determination to move forward. I’m sure that’s not coincidental, right?
The last part where the wall didn’t have the µ’s poster, I was a little sad but happy that they’re now moving in their own direction. I’m very interested on how things will go after this.
This here is proof that Honkers has died for our idol sins and she has now been reborn to pass on the idol faith to Aqours. We must repent!!!
Now you know how I feel Takaii. Prior to the anime, largely because of the the Drama Tracks, I thought Mari was going to be my one and only best girl just like how Nozomi is my one and only from u’s. After 12 episodes, I added 8 more to my list of best girl, which is practically Aqours as a whole. I can’t choose just one waifu from these 9 charming ladies. On the episode itself, gotta say it’s thanks to Mari that we got to see Kanan’s cute faces. My favorite funny bit of the episode has got to be Aqours getting fans. Ruby getting chased, I didn’t see that coming, along with Dia getting ignored. You must have felt so awkward with someone else doing her catchphrase and it looks like Kanan cemented herself as the cool mature beauty of the group.
Just gonna add too that I agree that the last scene was simply beautiful. This was the same beach Muse declared their disbandment, and it’s the also the same place that Aqours declared in one voice they’re stepping out of Muse’s shadow and starting their own story, making them more united than ever. I completely agree that feather scene was a pass the baton moment. That feather was held by everyone in Muse in Season 2, and as if responding to Chika’s letter it fell now in Chika’s hand saying Muse’s story is done and from here on it’s Aqours story now. The lyrics of Aozora Jumping Heart just fit so perfectly. Plus, I love that song very much.
Theory: the Otonokizaka student that showed up is actually the current president of the Otonokizaka Idol Research club. Which is why she could tell Aqours in detail that Muse left nothing behind, and spoke of Muse wishes as if she knew members of Muse personally. And the current Otonokizka idol Research Club will prove to be even more dangerous than Saint Snow, because they grasp exactly what Aqours saw this episode for a long time, and have many more years of putting it into practice.
Why do I make this claim? Consider this possible time-line for Love Live, based on the identification that Love Live is at least into it’s Fifth Anniversary.
Year 1: A-RISE wins the First Love Live. Muse forms and wins the second Love Live. Muse disbands.
Year 2: Alisa and Yukiho joins the Otonokizaka Idol Research Club. Hanayo becomes President. The Second years graduate at the end of the year.
Year 3: Mari, Dia and Kana forms the first Aqours. The last members of Muse graduate from Otonokizaka at the end of the year.
Year 4: Epilogue of the Love Live Movies. Alisa and Yukiho speaks about School Idols to a large audience of about 9 members at the beginning of the School Year. Riko Sakuramachi enrolls into Otonokizaka. Alisa and Yukiho graduates. Riko flops in her piano performance and leaves Otonokizaka.
Year 5: Love Live Sunshine begins. Chika founds the second Aqours.
Even were we to push back the time-line by a year, and assume this is Year 6 rather than 5, this means that we know the Otonokizaka Idol Research Club has been active as recently as last year, or the year before last. It seems to me quite likely, along with all those deliberate attempts to hide what lies at the top of the Love Live world, that Otonokizaka’s Idol Research Club is still alive and possibly fielding formidable teams.
Added to this is the incredible familiarity the Otonokizaka Third year spoke of Muse. It is quite possible that she herself was the Kohai of the First Years in Muse, and hence knew first hand the wishes and sentiments of the members of Muse. If this is the case, this girl may be the very closest we are going to get to a Muse cameo – she is Alisa’s successor, and mentored by one of the last members of Muse to remain in Otonokizaka herself.
Impressive time theory you have there. Seems plausible if we sit down, take time to connect the dots
Four episodes later than I expected, but I’m glad we got the moment where Aquors officially separates themselves from Muse. To me the standout scene was actually when we learned Muse left nothing behind at Otonokizaka. Contrast to the conversation with St. Snow and it tells you how Muse didn’t operate with the single goal of winning but had their own condition to work for, then bowed out once that was complete. Or it’s an overly sympathetic guess at why Nico took all of her expensive merchandise home.
Lastly, Riko’s books and Chika having handprints over her eyes had me in stitches.
HUH?!…WAIT…She ain’t Hanayo Koizumi!
And She ain’t Honoka Kousaka!, She ain’t her Daughter either!
I Mean Come on, They are Just Look Alike, if you ask me!
Still wondering why Mari gropes Kanan’s “Kanans” if she’s got the biggest bust size in all of Aquors. A shout-out to Nozomi, perhaps?
Seriously Takaii? No screenshot of Chika holding the feather on the last scene that was a call back to µ’s ED? Your Love Live fan credentials are now INVALID! YOU NO LONGER DESERVE TO BLOG THIS SERIES!
Nah just kidding, we all love you!
Anyway I personally found this episode…okay. Not bad, just okay. Its about as a subtle as a sledgehammer (with the words SUBTLE written on it) about its call back to µ’s but Love Live has never really been known subtlety. This is what a µ’s tribute episode should have been unlike the previous references. I really like the call back to the beach scene and especially liked the feather symbolism that Chika had.
Riko sure has a collection does she? She should let Chika see them, I’m sure she would gladly pander her subtext-girlfriend with her fetish. Just look at the ED.
More like Riko would pander Chika her Girl x Wall fetish. Just kidding, Riko would love to make yuri out of Chika.
What also got my attention in that scene is Riko’s grip.
While often you’d see slaps leaving a clear mark on the face, this has got to be a first for me. Riko gripped Chika’s face so hard her hand marks were left on Chika’s face.
Skull Face Chika?
I was thinking more like Oliver Queen Chika.
You see Takaii, You are getting flak for not having that MOST IMPORTANT screenshot of all…
Where Alpha Honoka spiritually passes the baton to Chika