「胸の底で、傷は静かに生きている。」 (Mune no Soko de, Kizu wa Shizuka ni Ikite Iru.)
“The Wound is at Her Heart”
Eight episodes in and now it all finally comes out into the open. I mean whoever thought Kiyotaka would be wooing the girls this quickly and effectively, all before the real testing begins? Also something something Kikyou giving far more reaction faces than honestly deserved – but then again we knew that was coming sooner rather than later. When it comes to crazy, it can never stay hidden for long.
Given how prolonged Kikyou’s development has been, I always had a chuckle out of this being the moment her history comes out after learning of it from the source material. Kikyou after all has been quite good at keeping her past a secret and ensuring those who do stumble across it are either isolated or quickly eliminated. It makes some sense such a situation would continue here given neither Kiyotaka or Suzune would’ve revealed anything (alongside spreading gossip not being Kakeru’s style), but it does add some very nice tension to what otherwise was set to be a fairly typical Youjitsu test. One way or another, there’s no margin of error this time around.
Of course what makes things so interesting this time around is that history of Kikyou’s, or rather her personality. While it’s easy for her (and Kiyotaka) to pin her nature on an underlying desire for attention, in reality she could also be considered a victim. Kikyou as shown was raised on praise and accolades, she grew up expecting it, so when true competition finally rolled around, no surprise she lacked the mental tools needed to handle it. Couple it with her (albeit exaggerated) lust for popularity by trying hard to be there for everyone – otherwise known as the glorified drink dispenser – and you can start appreciating why she eventually snapped once her coping mechanism was found out. She wanted the limelight without the struggle, popularity without internal development. By focusing so much on everyone else that blackmail became her end all be all she lost sight of how to properly go about getting her wants. It’s a lot like how Suzune started out with attempting to emulate her brother – with the difference being Suzune has learned how that approach was wrong and how she must be her own person.
Considering the stakes of this test involve potential expulsion of Suzune and Kiyotaka it’s a given Suzune won’t actually lose against Kikyou, but how she beats her is definitely the question going forward. How will Kikyou try leveraging Kakeru? Just how will Kiyotaka involve himself to see both Suzune and Class D win? And in what manner shall Maya and Kei inevitably find their crushes employed in the upcoming battles?
Who knew I’d ever wind up excited to see Monday roll around.