It’s “Parent’s Day” at Tsumugi’s daycare/preschool, and so Kouhei takes the morning off from teaching to attend. While there, he overhears some of the other moms chatting about how they make a new bag for their kid every year. This causes Kouhei to become aware of how old and dirty Tsumugi’s bag has gotten. Later that day when they are at home, Kouhei asks Tsumugi if she would like him to make her a new bag. Tsumugi refuses, as the bag she has now was the last thing her mom ever crafted for her. Still wanting to make something for Tsumugi, Kouhei then suggests that he’ll make her favorite dish that her mom used to make. Tsumugi excitedly suggests squid and taro.
The next day at school, Kouhei asks Kotori for help in fulfilling Tsumugi’s request. Thus, when their usual cooking/dinner date comes around, Kouhei and Kotori get to work on recreating the squid and taro stew. Kotori frets about whether she can help to perfectly recreate the taste that Tsumugi remembered, but Kouhei reassures her that it will be fine. While cutting the taro, Kouhei’s hand slips. While he is not injured, this causes Kotori to relive a bit of her childhood trauma towards knives.
In the end, they manage to successfully cook up some squid and taro stew. Tsumugi eats it happily and is satisfied by the taste, causing Kotori and Kouhei to breathe a sigh of relief. Kotori hands over some of that night’s leftovers to Kouhei before the father-daughter pair leaves; saying that it’ll taste even better the next day. On the way home, Kouhei asks Tsumugi if he can at least sew a patch onto her bag, to cover up the stain that won’t come out. Tsumugi agrees to this.
This was a slightly more plot-heavy episode than usual, with a much briefer cooking segment. For this particular recipe, I don’t mind as the dish is relatively simple to begin with. What’s more important is that we get a glimpse into Tsumugi’s feelings towards her deceased mom and also a bit of a glimpse into the trauma that Kotori suffered (causing her fear of knives).
It’s episodes like these that make me appreciate Kouhei as a character. He’s a single dad and he tries hard to be there for Tsumugi. This episode makes it a little more obvious that Kouhei sometimes feels that he’s not supporting his daughter as much as he thinks he should. The scene with Kouhei eyeing Tsumugi’s bag was a nice use of the “show not tell” technique. The scene with Tsumugi holding her bag and softly saying that she didn’t want to get rid of it because it was a bag her mom made was also pretty powerful. How Tsumugi’s mother/Kouhei’s wife died, and the direct aftermath of that has not yet been addressed in the manga. But scenes like these show that Tsumugi’s a lot stronger than she appears. Kotori’s trauma, on the other hand, has been addressed in the manga, but not yet in the anime. Still, I do like that this episode sort of hinted at what happened.
Overall, I thought this was a good episode. Not extremely sad, nor extremely comedic. But it was a pleasant episode episode that developed the relationship between all three characters.
Out of five for this episode: