The return of that wonderful smile!

With Manaka awake, everyone is together again at last. On top of that, unlike the others who woke up Manaka is full of energy and seems completely fine with all the changes that have occurred while she slept – delighting in them rather than stressing. Hikari can’t help but find this very odd, especially when it’s revealed that Manaka has no memory of the ceremony five years ago. And she no longer has any Ena. Is she really alright? Meanwhile Uroko is still nowhere to be found, however he lets Tsumugu know in his own way that he’s definitely close-by.

Akira’s head is -huge-.

Manaka playing in the snow sure was cute.


I usually skip the openings when I’m watching anime (unless I just really, really like the song) but by chance I noticed something about this episode’s one, and rewatched the previous ones to confirm. Until now, post-timeskip Manaka hadn’t appeared awake in the opening anywhere, but now there’s a new shot of her and Miuna looking like preistesses, and the hand that grabs the umbrella at the end is revealed to be hers. It’s a pretty clever little touch, because now that Manaka has woken up, the mood of the show has changed a lot. (I guess they also didn’t want to spoil the fact that she eventually wakes up, obvious as it may have been.)
Much of the episode is spent dwelling on how happy and cute Manaka is…and that’s just fine, actually. They’re really nice, sweet little scenes although they did make me even more confused about the nature of the snow everywhere – apparently it is salt-flake snow, and yet it’s cold? It becomes ice floes? I don’t know anymore. Anyway, there’s a clear contrast between Manaka’s behaviour and the awkward teenager-ness of everybody else, so it’s a welcome change. Not to say the awkward teenager-ness is gone – there’s some more tension between Chisaki and Tsumugu, who will be leaving for his research purposes soon. I’m still undecided on exactly how I feel about these two – there’s clearly a spark, but the other characters continue to complicate things. I’ll also admit that out of all the potential pairings in the show, I think they’re the least interesting (although I did laugh at Tsumugu remarking that they should be able to bribe Uroko with porn.) I’m glad the episode didn’t spend too much time dwelling on Miuna’s feelings concerning Manaka being awake again.
There’s clearly something wrong with Manaka – concerning her memories, her loss of Ena and also that creepy dead-eyed stare she had at one point, so it looks like I was right about the false sense of security thing. …Yet I can’t say I expected the episode to take a turn for the comical at the end with the return of Uroko’s ridiculous fish-curse, so once again I really don’t know where this show is going.

Tsumugu is looking more and more mature, or maybe it’s just me.

Those zombie eyes are unnerving.

The return of an old friend I didn’t expect to see.

Out of 5,