Handa, what the hell would a kid do with a free massage ticket???

Summary for Episodes 10 and 11:

Naru’s grandfather asks Handa to help out with some chores, one of which is re-writing the list of names of people who helped out with building a shrine.  Suddenly, Handa gets a call from his friend in Tokyo, Kawafuji.  Kawafuji asks Handa to come back to Tokyo, as the Director says he’ll forgive Handa.  Thus, Handa spends his last day at the village going to a festival and hanging out with Naru and her friends.

Handa has never been to a festival before in his life… while his reaction to it is adorable, it’s also a tad depressing…

If Handa’s always depressed do we really need context for this?

The next day, Handa leaves for Tokyo without telling anyone.  Once he’s back, he meets up with the Director whom he punched before.  He apologizes sincerely, having realized the severity of what he did.  The director, sensing his sincerity, decides to forgive Handa.  Since he’s there, the Director also takes the chance to appraise Handa’s work; but Handa suddenly gets cold feet and deliberately destroys the piece he was planning to submit.  The director still congratulates Handa for his work, but now Handa is faced with the dilemma of creating a new piece in time for the exhibition.

This is such a lovely shot of Handa.

The next day, Kawafuji drops by the Handa household to find Handa utterly depressed.  In an attempt to find that “inspiration” again, Handa ropes Kawafuji (and also Kanzaki) into helping him relive his days at the village.  It doesn’t work.  However, Kawafuji manages to get a phone call set up between Handa and the villagers, which helps to snap Handa out of his funk.  Remembering the list of names he had to rewrite for the shrine, Handa quickly sets to work.

If you thought Handa’s past depression-fests were bad, well…

Outside of his room, his parents muse about their son.  Handa’s mother despairs about Handa going back to the village, but Handa’s father accepts the fact that his son must learn to live and grow as his own person.

…And then there’s Kanzaki in the back ruining the moment.

My Opinion:

Both of these episodes were great, though honestly; without the vibrancy of village life in episode 11, things got a bit dull.  That was the point of the episode, though; so I’m not going to knock down too many points for that.  Despite being somewhat more somber in tone, episodes 10 and 11 were still very entertaining (and funny!) to watch.

Episode 10 is definitely the one I like more, as it’s just super fun to watch beloved characters hang out and mess around.  It was also quite adorable to see Handa so enchanted with the festivities, as he’s never been to a festival before.  Other than that, there wasn’t a whole lot of substance in episode 10, which sets us up for the more serious episode 11.

It’s in episode 11 that we really see how far Handa has developed.  Back in episode 1, he impulsively punched the elderly director and generally acted very immaturely after being criticized.  However, in this episode, he finally realizes how wrong he was for punching out an old man, and learns to be just a bit more compassionate.

We also get to see a bit of Handa’s parents this episode.  While Handa’s mom is a bit of a… worrier, Handa’s dad is pretty cool.  Handa’s dad actually owns up to the fact that he basically made his son into a recluse, because of how strict he was on Handa—making him study all the time and not even letting him play with his friends.  Sad to say, but that’s pretty novel in the world of anime, where it’s usually the mother who has to convince the father that they should let the kid do what they want.

So it’s pretty obvious at this point that Handa will be returning to the island by next episode.  Since we already know he’ll return, I wonder how the episode will end?  Maybe with a giant welcoming party for Handa?  That wouldn’t be so bad.

Out of five for episodes 10 and 11:

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Episode 11 had such great shots of Handa.

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