「私のカブ」 (Watashi no Cub)
THE RACING HORSE & THE CAT
If Reiko is like a racing horse wearing blinkers. Koguma is like your neighbor’s fat cat that likes to stroll around town getting treats from all the houses she passes by. All cats, with their wide eyes and nonchalant attitudes, are going somewhere (God only knows where) but regardless of their destination what they enjoy the most is to look around. Maybe I am a hikikomori who spends way too much time following and observing her cat around the house, but who knows right.
The juxtaposition of behavior between our two main protagonists was a nice play on the sequence of episodes. However what really caught my attention and what I suppose was the main theme addressed on this episode was the independence of thought displayed by Koguma. Which only added to the list of things that make her an unusual character in the context of Japanese society.
A RIDER’S SOUL
A school trip is announced and Koguma is actually looking forward to this. The foods displayed on the pamphlet are a promise of indulgence after a hard working summer. But alas, she wakes up to a fever on the fateful day of the trip and calls in to cancel. And because life can sometimes be a huge irony her temperature goes down after an hour or so. Enough time that she has missed the bus. Feeling frustrated she goes outside of her apartment complex and kicks a rock. This rock reaches her cub and that’s when she makes the decision. No overthinking about whether or not to do it.
She calls Reiko who even tries to walk her out of it saying “it sounds dangerous, you probably shouldn’t (…) if I tell you to stay put, would you listen?” which brings out one of the most iconic answers of all time “hmm… Maybe next time I’ll listen”. Koguma is aware that what she’s about to do goes against school regulations and that she can get in trouble because of that. But now she has experience, a motorbike license and her cub has been slightly upgraded. So Koguma wears her gym uniform—because at least she’s following that rule—works out her route and off she goes.
A BIG ADVENTURE
This willingness to follow a feeling regardless of the consequences shows an independence that I hadn’t seen coming. But I reckon this is one of the unspoken values of a rider’s soul: independence and a bit of rebellion. The entire journey makes it a point to emphasize how Koguma does things at her own pace. How she notices houses, the ocean, the surfers, and the mountains. Kogu’s adventure is not about the treasure, it’s about the journey itself. Insert a little inside joke from last week’s episode. After driving to the parking area at the foot of Mt. Fuji, Koguma cheekely looks up and says “I’ll let you off with just this much today” to the source of Reiko’s frustration.
Other than this main theme, I ought to mention details I thought complemented this episode very much: the conversation about the highway; the class noticing Koguma’s arrival and part of me being like “yeah, she’s cool I know, took you all long enough”; sneaking away together; the fact that Reiko has a helmet with her at all times; the girls driving together for the first time and the overall friendship moments shared between them. Super Cub marketing was a bit heavy on this one, but didn’t really bother me at all. What keeps bothering me is the CGI—something I never mentioned before—it really puts me off. I guess it cuts costs for production. But I would’ve loved if the driving scenes weren’t though *insert a childish pout*.
As always, many thanks for reading and I’ll be down in the comment section! Have a lovely day wherever you may be~
Full-length images: 36.