「嘘みたいな煌めきで」 (Uso mitaina kirameki de)
“So Bright It Doesn’t Seem Real”
KtU will be interesting to look back on at season’s end if just to see the extent of its progress. The show has been remarkably tame with the drama so far, treading softly around the central conflict of Misaki vs. Ririna and largely avoiding any of the catty infighting you’d expect in similar series. Avoiding these matters is par the course in romance (because drama), however with KtU’s premise it’s strange seeing little until now given its tailor made fit for emotional bloodletting. At least until we got to the end of this episode.
It’s not too surprising for me we had the inkling of committals pop up this week, though the ones deciding definitely was out of left field. Ririna obviously, Misaki (even after her heart to heart) maybe, but Neji? Never thought he would apparently come to a decision before the girls. It wasn’t immediately clear if Neji was planning on rejecting Misaki, but that was the indication I got considering such a choice would fit with the matchmaking knowledge he gleaned. If Ririna is his actual partner (which is no longer in doubt) then letting Misaki go is the smart thing to do. Tear off the scab, endure the pain, and come out stronger because of it—certainly the ending KtU has been steadily moving towards. At least until Shuu got involved. This angle, while not altering the inevitable direction of the show, sufficiently muddies the waters for the necessary drama. We know (well, can guess) Shuu deliberately interfered with the text and probably cares deeply for Misaki. Her outburst largely confirms the extent of Misaki’s love, and likely also serves as the beginning of a more committed attempt to seeing the two together. This girl is determined.
How it screws everything up of course is Ririna’s presence. Neji and Shuu alone would only affect Neji’s immediate choice (i.e. what he was planning to say to Misaki), but Ririna there affects Ririna’s state of mind. Overhearing that Misaki is Neji’s “destined” match is enough to throw the already unsure girl off track—her personality, lack of emotional experience, and liking of Misaki ensures it. And that’s before Shuu potentially says something worse to Ririna’s face. Thanks to Shuu, all the key relationships are effectively back at square one, with what she says next week determining how they subsequently stand relative to one another. I fully expect Neji will return to a quivering pile of third wheel hesitancy—he has no other form—while Ririna will probably put off any confession while processing the information. Misaki’s reaction will be the one to watch, especially if the Shuu discussions end up driving a larger wedge between the destined pair Misaki feels she can help with. In the end it could all come down to the girl who has supposedly taken herself out the running.
Before we get that far though, we need to see how Shuu’s confrontation plays out. Will Ririna be savaged? Will Misaki stay in contention? Will Neji admit his lifelong love of traps? Just have to see what next week brings.