「夏だ! 海だ! きもだめしたい!」 (Natsu Da! Umi Da! Kimodameshi Tai!)
“Summer! The Beach! I Want to Test My Courage!”
It’s beach-time in Uzaki-chan wa Asobitai! as Uzaki’s new job at the cafe Sakurai works at gets her an invite to a lavish beach trip with Itsuhito and Ami. But as the two conspire to get Uzaki and Sakurai closer to each other, their plans end up not happening as they imagined they would.
Okay, so before I actually talk about the content of the episode, I need to dedicate a paragraph to how this episode brought attention to what was “Sugoi Dekai” this whole time. There’s been much said about how Uzaki’s small stature must make it difficult for her to carry around her massive breasts. Anime characters are anime characters so we’re really not meant to overthink Uzaki’s design beyond just being a combination of the cute kouhai archetype and a chest size meant to appeal to fans of large breasts.
Needless to say that it all just seemed like her bust size was for the heck of it until we finally saw her in a swimsuit. The proportions of her body might be all over the place, but her most noticeable features are impressive, especially in more fanservicey moments like when Sakurai accidentally feels underneath her bikini in search of the watermelon she was hiding. Her oppai might have felt different from the watermelon, but she could give watermelons a run for their money with what she’s carrying around.
Now that that’s all out of my system, it was still a very cute episode considering how it gave Uzaki and Sakurai more time to bond beyond their average dwellings. As Ami and Itsuhito plan the day around the couple getting closer, it actually gives them more time to breathe in ways that don’t adhere to the jokes that are centered around them.
We actually see Sakurai getting excited about swimming again after so much time was spent away from swimming to focus on his studies and his off-time playing video games. We also get the rare moment where Uzaki has to deal with Sakurai’s impulses as his deep fear for the Test of Courage causes her to have an authoritative position trying to calm him down while also trying to scare him. And it was adorable to see how Uzaki was open to Sakurai holding onto her while he slept after failing to get his tired self to play games with her.
We also get a clearer view of Itsuhito’s motives. It was easy to see why he has a more vested interest in getting Sakurai to cheer up and have fun so that his college years aren’t wasted alone. At the same time, I’m wondering where exactly he was going with the other reason he had with trying to get the two together.
Part of me is thinking that he wants to get closer to Ami and that joining up with her to create scenarios that would bring the two together uninterrupted was his way of complying with Ami’s demands and paying her enough lip service to get her attention. Still, it’ll be interesting to see what happens now that we’re getting cuter moments with Uzaki and Sakurai being together.