In the first act, three of Sakamoto’s female classmates reminisce about the first time that they met him. And… that’s pretty much the plot of the entire first act. Since this is Sakamoto, their “first memories” are predictably amusing.
In the second act, Kubota’s mom (whose name is Shigemi) gets a confirmation of Sakamoto’s existence during a parent-teacher meeting. When Kubota falls sick one day, Shigemi gets the idea to dress up as him and infiltrate the school in order to get close to Sakamoto. Thanks in part to Sakamoto, Shigemi eventually realizes some important things.
The first act felt a little bit lackluster to me. It was nice that some of Sakamoto’s other classmates got a chance to be the focus of an episode; but I honestly don’t really care too much about them. At least all their memories of meeting Sakamoto strongly averted the typical anime tropes. But you still have to admit, the story about Sakamoto with the upside-down umbrella in the rain was just downright bizarre. (How is that in any way romantic???)
Anyway, the main act of the episode was pretty obviously the one featuring Kubota’s mom, Shigemi. It was the longer of the acts, and continued a plotline from an earlier episode. I was pleasantly surprised to see Shigemi again. I suppose realistically, it was really only a matter of time before she found out the truth. And amazingly, her act managed to come off as utterly creepy and yet strangely touching at the same time.
Ignoring the fact that Shigemi must have had to shrink or something (because I remember her being a bit taller than her son???), you can’t deny that her actions are still extremely creepy on several levels. Pretending to be your own son is already kind of iffy, but she does it so that she can basically stalk Sakamoto, which is really not cool. But what’s even more “not cool” about this act was the scene towards the end. The male students suddenly want to fondle some boobs, and suddenly decide to go after who they think is Kubota? What??? What the eff kind of plot is that? Does this even happen in real life? Is this just some kind of cultural thing I’m not getting? Either way, that kind of ruined the act a bit for me—sexual harassment isn’t really something to make fun of; and it would still be terrible even if it had actually been Kubota rather than his mom. Thankfully, Sakamoto stepped in and helped make the episode decent again.
I’m glad Shigemi eventually came to her senses. The scene where she remembered all the times she was a mother to Kubota were kind of sweet. One part of that stood out to me, though. There’s a brief flashback where she’s in a fight with Kubota’s father. I think it’s pretty heavily implied that she’s currently in a bit of a loveless marriage (Kubota’s father rarely shows up AT ALL); which is possibly why Shigemi is so hooked on romance dramas. And it also explains why she’s so smitten with Sakamoto. Anyway, she does realize that it was awful of her to pretend to be her son to stalk Sakamoto, and quickly drops the act afterwards and goes back home to be a mother to her sick son. I guess it’s easy to feel sad for Shigemi, because we all understand not being able to have the things we want. But at least she found some sort of inner peace.
Anyway, this was a pretty decent episode despite all my criticisms; so out of five: