「僕らははぐれた」 (Bokura wa Hagureta)
“We Got Split Up”

Things started off in true Kyo fashion with an internal monologue about job site visitation day. Kyo’s idea of an ideal job visitation- a crime scene or a drug cartel made me chuckle (though he could save two birds with one hand and probably do both at once- they’re interconnected). Cue the fierce competition for who gets to be in Anna’s group-Adachi tries his damndest to get in, Kyo wants in too, but feels uncomfortable saying it outright, and Kanzaki just wants to get in Haru’s group. The girls decide to vote on who they’ll let in (seriously nerve-wracking-I can relate to the fear of “oh no, oh no, I’m not going to get picked”).

Hilariously, Kyo accidentally turns it into a competition of who’s the dumbest rock of the bunch, trying to rescue Kanzaki by insisting he go into the smart group (Hara’s) and that he, Kyo, bombed a science test and should go with the stupid bunch. Kyo meant well, but totally shoved his foot in his mouth with that one-while totally lying about his grades. Anna picks up on it-the boy’s super smart and no way would get such a low grade. But, it works, though not without Adachi coming along for the ride.

Cut to the library scene, Hara digs into the heart of a teenage girl’s insecurities about body image. In her conversation with Anna, she pretty much admits that she doesn’t think of herself as pretty and that she needs to lose weight to be attractive. There’s this misconception played out in society that emphasizes that beauty = thinness, totally shitting over the truth that there are so many different types of bodies, so many different types of beauty, and so many different types of tastes in girls. It’s a crying shame that society’s messages about beauty get perpetuated the way they do, trickling down to girls like Hara who don’t feel good about themselves because they don’t match that “ideal” thin body type. I love how Norio-sensei really is open and raw about that struggle through her writing of Hara.

One of the things I love about Anna is how she puts at ease people who aren’t comfortable with themselves. Her kind, open nature and comfortability with being who she is draws others in. She treats others as equals, doing things like taking selfies or sharing snacks and has no sense of high school hierarchy or the cool vs uncool club. Everyone’s in her cool club as far as she’s concerned and that’s the way things should be. If there were more high schoolers like her (and Kyo too), high school might be a somewhat happier place.

The boys’ peanut gallery is very vocal about their horniness, but don’t underestimate girls when it comes to that subject-they think it even if they don’t announce it for all the world to hear. I laughed so hard when Anna asked Hara questions like “How far did you go?” or “As a couple, what would you want to do?” and Hara immediately took them for innuendoes. Of course, the spoken answers are far more innocent “Shibuya” and “sharing pockets”.

One of my favorite parts by far was the bookshelf phantom, Kyo. I almost died when his eyes peering through the shelf showed up in the girls’ selfie. To add insult to injury, the girls reassure him that it’s ok if he overheard it, making him think that he’s counted as a nobody. In reality, they were referring to how they could trust him. Not the diss that he thought that it was, but I can so relate to reading the wrong way into what someone says. It was worth the pain in the end because he found out that Anna is available-though he claims it has “nothing” to do with him.

If it weren’t clear already, after the next part, it becomes even more clear that, in fact, it has everything to do with him. He even sort of suspects as much, looking back on his bike-riding adventure with Anna, though he convinces himself she doesn’t look at him in that way. One of the hallmarks of every love comedy is sharing an umbrella with your crush after someone forgets their own. This circumstance is not lost on Kyo or Anna when it rains after school one day, both thinking the same thing. Kyo’s prepared, equipped with a raincoat that’s a few sizes too big when he runs into Anna who is, by all appearances at least, umbrella-less. What follows is a most ridiculously inefficient proposal on Anna’s part that she wear Kyo’s coat and run out to buy an umbrella (which Kyo points out, he could just go do). It’s obvious that the girl just wants to wear Kyo’s jacket, which for a teenager, there’s something titillating about wearing or even just touching their love interest’s clothing (as Kyo well knows from Anna’s gym shirt incident).

It’s adorable that Anna fits perfectly into Kyo’s oversize coat (though I’m sure it’s more embarrassing than adorable for Kyo). Anna, being Anna, accidentally leaves her wallet and her backpack at the entrance with Kyo. It’s a good thing Kyo realized it early on and ran after her-it would’ve been so much more embarrassing if she realized it at the checkout counter, though I’m sure Anna would’ve brushed it off. In the process, Kyo discovers that Anna had a (working) umbrella all along, though she protests it was broken. I feel for Anna on the embarrassment of looking like a fool upon getting busted-not that Kyo minds. The two share a personal moment, Anna (who tries to be Kyo’s umbrella) instructing Kyo to put her wallet inside her sweater pocket, and adorable blushes abound on both sides. It’s clear it’s mutual here. I enjoy so much getting to watch the two of them awkwardly grow closer together-you can’t help but root for them, want to protect this precious pair like they’re a world heritage site.

The big question is: do you like mint chocolate chip flavor? In my opinion, mint chocolate chip is gross, though for Kyo and Anna, that’s a big “Yes, I like it”. I chuckled when Anna asked Kyo if she likes it while chowing down on said flavor-that’s a dead giveaway (as Kyo notes). Anna’s answer “I like…” is ambiguous and purposefully so. In the Japanese, I’m sure as people with an elementary understanding of Japanese might know, “Daisuke” means like/love and doesn’t necessarily have to have the object-you can infer from the situation what she means (unlike English where you need the object). It’s obvious that she means the ice cream, but it’s also obvious that it has a double meaning-which Kyo tries to clarify with his “Just the mint chocolate chip” response-yelling louder than he ever has before. One of the many bookmarkable moments in this series (though TBH, what moments aren’t?).

Another of my favorite moments-the brief shot of Kyo’s smile as he observes Anna trying to buy snacks at the conbini prior to the field trip. One of the first times we’ve seen him smile, I think. Their field trip to the manga publisher’s looks really cool-wish I could’ve gone along. Adachi’s the big landmine in the group-he’s guaranteed to say something embarrassingly uncalled for, which he does when he and Anna start to bond over a cute model and he goes overboard. Manga is truly a good bridge, in the show and IRL, and that awkward moment with Adachi is quickly smoothed over when he and the girls get into discussions on their favorite series.

The elevator scene was another good one-Anna takes the crowded elevator as an opportunity to press up close and personal to Kyo who tries his utmost to hold it in, only to become more hyperaware of Anna’s closeness. Those two are in their own little world, with a whole lot going on in one moment which totally passes by as just another normal 60 seconds for everyone else (who walks off and leaves them in the elevator). Right after experiencing what Kyo believes to be something right out of a heavenly ani-manga-esque scene (LOL), he ungracefully gets stuck in the elevator door ROFL.

It was cute to see Kyo try so hard to hold back to seem cool and aloof rather than explode with excitement when the staff pulls out an original draft of a beloved manga. I’ve totally been in his shoes before, though usually because I’d been in a museum where I might get carted out or scolded for exploding with noisy enthusiasm. Anna is a gem-she realizes Kyo’s a lot more interested than he tries to let on and makes way for Kyo so he can see front and center-a good thing, since I don’t think he would’ve been able to do so on his own initiative. That was such a precious moment, when we saw that spark in Kyo’s eye for the first time-Anna sees it too and I think it leaves an impact on her. This kid really does love manga and it makes sense of why he probably loves drawing so much. I loved it when Kyo lists his favorite manga to Anna and Mitsuedomoe makes an appearance among them, Norio plugging another series that she wrote.

I totally feel and get Kyo’s habit of overthinking leading him to believe he’s being laughed at by the girls thinking of him reading shojo manga (though seriously, shoujo manga is for everyone, though I don’t believe the girls were belittling him about that in the first place) and running off to vent in the bathroom. Anna is the only one who waits for him when he gets out, leaving us on a cliffhanger when they realize that everyone else has left without them and they’ve missed the train to boot.


  1. It took a while, but this series has really grown on me a lot.

    And that kabedon! OK, so Anna did it to stop Kyo getting crushed against the wall, but the result was them sharing an intimate moment. And missing their train too, but I’m sure they’ll cope somehow, and probably become even closer as a result of more shared experiences.

    1. I’m glad to hear that! I can’t say enough how beyond superb of a series BokuYaba is. Yes, even awkward situations or “oh crap!” situations are perfect for getting closer through shared experiences (and often make for better stories later on).

      Princess Usagi
  2. I found it really odd that someone said that they were going to take the train 20 minutes past the hour. There could be transfers to catch, but this is Tokyo. Trains run every three to five minutes. Or maybe that was a limited express to catch? Even then, missing a limited express just means taking a local

    1. These kids live way the heck out on the Meguro Line, a long way from Iidabashi. Local would take forever to get back there and the teachers would be panicking (they’d need to make two connections anyway, probably) so taking a limited express would be pretty crucial.

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