「Chapter.43 桜の花の咲く頃 / Chapter.44 小さなつぶやき」 (Chapter.43 Sakura no Hana no Sakukoro / Chapter.44 Chisana Tsubuyaki)
“Chapter.43 When The Cherry Blossom Blooms / Chapter.44 Small Murmur”

This was probably my absolute favorite episodes thus far.

Closure and Moving Forward

After Shimada’s fourth straight loss against Souya, I wasn’t quite sure how this episode was going to handle the follow up. If anything, I was expecting this week’s episode to be a rather somber one with maybe a hint of Shimada letting his emotions leak out to his face. Instead we were given one of the best post-loss episodes ever.

Starting with the elephant in the room — I’m so happy to see that Shimada managed to find his muse as well as get closure from the elders of his village. I personally was stressing about just how he was going to go about it all especially since we could literally feel just how much everything was weighing down on him. But lo and behold, the elders of the villages just kept on doing their thing by supporting Shimada and giving him the confidence knowing that no matter what happens that they’d be there for him. Something I probably appreciated just as much as Shimada did.

But on the topic of Shimada — who knew the man was such a saint? I figured he was a caring person especially after we found out about his upbringing, but to go as far as getting the whole community involved in caring for their elders by keeping both their minds and spirits up? I don’t know about you guys but I couldn’t help but shed a few tears of happiness thinking about just how much all of Shimada’s efforts must mean for the elders of his village. And then think about this — even with all this philanthropic work Shimada still wants to bring prestige back to his village in return for all the love and support they give him.

Overall, I was extremely happy with what we were given this week. What could have been a somber and somewhat depressing situation turned into something I can only describe as bliss.

Our Three Favorite Sisters

While I appreciate 3-gatsu for trying to incorporate our favorite sisters into the plot even though they weren’t all that involved. That said, it looks like this week marks their return to the spotlight and I for one couldn’t be happier. Honestly, I’ve been anxiously waiting for something involving them and what better way to bring them back in than with some Japanese sweet’s related trouble? And sure, there struggles may not have much to do with the story, but it was great seeing everyone including Grandpa.

Looking Ahead

With the way this week’s episode ended, I can’t wait to see what happens next week. We have newly enlightened Rei who seems to be back on his game, our three favorite sisters ready to leap back into things, and a strong cast of supporting characters to help propel everything forward. Honestly, what more could you ask for? See you next week!




  1. What more could we ask for? We could ask that this series keep going into the next season! There’s plenty of material for another season…. (and it gets back more onto the Rei side of things than recent episodes ….. )

  2. This must be one of the best episodes, right? We got sentimental hometown visits, a lot of shougi events, and the Kawamoto sisters! Can’t ask for any more but more of this, really.

    Lol the sisters’ bias of Western sweets over traditional Japanese sweets

  3. For me, the best thing about Shimada’s arc is it showcases how much Rei has grown throughout the season. When Rei was happily speaking with the reporter and expressing the happiness he felt for someone else, that brought tears to my eyes. That and the very end of the episode when Rei met with the sisters, I feel like Rei’s whole aura has changed for the better.

    Really hope we can get a second season if it’s not too much to ask for.


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