Fall is coming, so the fall festival is underway at Gonta’s temple. Mayu and co. help out with setting up booths and whatnot. That night, the whole gang decides to sleep over. It is a hot night so Mayu gets the bright idea to tell ghost stories in order to “cool everyone down.”
Unfortunately, everyone’s ghost stories aren’t really that… scary. Mayu ends up being the last to tell a story, and her story involves her seeing a mysterious figure in the fields at night. At around the same time, Gonta’s mother Shizuha stops by and ends up scaring everyone. Later on (when the young-uns are asleep), Shizuha and Shamo share sake on the rooftops. Shamo mentions that Mayu probably saw a God of the Fields back then, just as the god himself turns a field of wheat golden.
The next day, the festival is in full swing. Even the God of the Fields stops by! To end, there is an Bon dance, which replaces the usual ending.
Wow, this episode was somewhat disappointing! Some festival episodes in anime are really just filler, with the main characters doing typical festival fare. But Nekogami Yaoyorozu decided to cut out almost all the festival stuff, which leaves us with… bad ghost story telling filler!
Okay, so some of the stories told were amusing (especially Yuzu’s that was “scary in a different way”), but I think the segment went on far too long. This is the first time in the series that I felt a gag went on way too long, and hopefully the only instance of it. I really wanted to see the gang goofing off at the festival (think of all the possible gags they could have made!) so it is a real shame that the festival took an entirety of around two or three minutes. The Bon dancing at the end was a nice touch but… dammit, I wanted my festival shenanigans!
The Bon dance (with singing by Mayu and Gonta) played like a sort of flash animation. While cute, the animation of the characters was pretty wonky. I don’t know if it was intended or not, but it sort of cheapened the whole thing.
At this point, I think the best thing about this episode was the introduction of Shizuha, Gonta’s mom. I love her character design! (Though I mistook her for a fox spirit at first whoops.) I am sure we will be seeing more of her shortly.
For this episode, out of five: