Slight spoilers abound!

The episode in which Takako redeems herself--and so much more. Oh so much more...

Summary:

Everyone at the inn is feeling down after the recent news. For the sake of the inn, Takako decides to go off to Tokyo to chase down the movie producer that scammed Enishi out of most of his cash. Sui tells her to take Ohana along, so Ohana can meet up with her mom to discuss future plans.

...Is that something we should really be happy about?

On the train ride to Tokyo, Ohana attempts to bond with her new aunt. Meanwhile, Satsuki meets up with Ko and basically accuses him of breaking up with Ohana. However, Ko adamantly claims that he hasn’t dumped her. The issue having been resolved, Ko asks Satsuki to tell him more about Ohana. Satsuki complies, telling Ko to follow her.

..."Takky" is such a terrible nickname...

~~~~~

Ohana and Takako finally reach Tokyo, and thanks to a tip by Satsuki, they are able to apprehend the hack producer at the Tokyo Tower. Takako then proceeds to take down the producer in the most epic way possible, (complete with “Ride of the Valkyries” playing in the background!). Back with Satsuki and Ko, Satsuki is shown to have led Ko back to her office. She shows him the “movie” that was filmed a while back. After seeing it, Ko gains renewed hope in pursuing Ohana, even though she hasn’t given him an answer.

BAD. ASS.

Satsuki knows just what to say to make things automatically uncomfortable...

Then, just as he’s about to cross a bridge over the freeway…

Guess. Just guess.

My Opinion:

You know what I said before about wondering whether Takako will ever be redeemed as a character? Well, she certainly redeemed herself this episode! She went from being a character I disliked, to one I felt lukewarm about, to a character that I now find totally badass. This is why, as I’ve said before, Hanasaku Iroha’s strongest point is in its character development.

Badass-ness aside, I also liked that Ko had some major role in this episode. It’s been far too long since we last saw you, Ko! Having Ko interact with Satsuki is… a strange combination to say the least, but I liked Satsuki’s portrayal in it. Satsuki still isn’t the “ideal” mother, but she truly cares about her daughter; and knows just when to butt into things. Based on what Ko claims, he was close to giving up on Ohana if Satsuki hadn’t accosted him.

Overall, I found this episode to be good. The beginning does seem to drag a bit, as it’s mostly just “talky-talky,” but there’s a point to it. The emotional “drama” this time is maybe a tad more subtle than in past episodes. (Or maybe that’s just me, because of what happened last episode…) And of course, we get a really cool action scene. Hell—I’d watch the episode just for that.

Now that Ohana and Ko have FINALLY met up again after like… ten(?) episodes, will Ohana finally have the courage to accept Ko’s feelings? Only time will tell!

Out of five: