Kou is in for a spot of trouble – his secretary Takai and Takai’s assistant, from his ‘old life’, have seen him under the bridge and have come to investigate. Kou is determined to lead them to believe that he has actually started his own alternative business under the bridge, which he is able to get the three ‘most sane'(or at least most normal-looking) members to play along with…to an extent. Although Takai seems placid enough to allow Kou to continue, the revelation that Nino is Kou’s ‘lover’ strikes him right in the heart, having apparently grown more than a little fond of his younger charge. He thus stays at Kou’s(ie, Nino’s) ‘villa’ a while longer out of obsession, but as it turns out, Takai’s assistant had other intentions for the visit: the orders of Kou’s father himself.
Arakawa is suddenly doing something I didn’t entirely expect – a plot, with a main ‘antagonist’. Such a thing I never would have thought could remotely work with a show like this, but if this episode is any indication (even if the indication of such an antagonist, Kou’s father, isn’t until the end), then it is working so well. And far from making things needlessly ‘serious’, it’s still keeping the comedy factor at a very high level…this was one of the funniest episodes of the show I’ve seen. There have been bits in previous episodes where it dragged a little of course, but there was none of that here, and I lold pretty heartily throughout the whole thing. I can’t really decide if Takai is the best or worst character ever, but whatever he is, I really owe it to him for making me laugh so much.
I also really like it when Arakawa can pull of things other than comedy, such as ‘aaaaw’, and we got plenty of that as well when Nino had to prove she really was Kou’s ‘lover’ by kissing him. (Although the cutest thing about this I thought was Kou’s ridiculous reactions about it afterwards, such as wondering if it would make Nino pregnant).
Besides Takai, I found Hoshi pretty damn amusing in this episode as well..particularly when he becomes heartbroken (..am I a terrible person for laughing so much at that?). And who knew Whitey could act like a normal human being when he’s required to?
I’m really looking forward to seeing where things go from now on with Kou’s father. Will there be some epic showdown?