What??? The final episode already?

Sadly, yes.

Why do so many Sweetness and Lightning episodes start out with such a somber mood?

Summary:

After Kouhei and Tsumugi return home after visiting Tae’s grave (as it’s been one year already), Kouhei is too tired to cook so the father-daughter duo go out to eat. Tsumugi becomes fascinated by an okonomiyaki restaurant; and since Tsumugi’s never had okonomiyaki, Kouhei decides that they should eat there. Tsumugi, who was led to believe that this was a self-service place by Kouhei, is soon disappointed to find out that the okonomiyaki is already made by the cooks for you. Her annoyance soon blows up into a full-on tantrum as Kouhei is too panicked to properly handle the situation. The two end up leaving the restaurant before they’ve finished eating.

I would be able to take this episode more seriously if it wasn’t about Tsumugi throwing a tantrum about the most utterly silly thing.

The next day, Tsumugi’s still upset–at her father and at the okonomiyaki fiasco. At the high school, Kouhei tells Kotori about what happened. Kotori then suggests that they make okonomiyaki at her place. She’s even more excited than usual as her mother should finally be home for a meal for once.

Tsumugi at least knows how to make an entrance.

Shinobu and Yagi also show up to help out. Unfortunately, Kotori’s mother had to leave early for work; and Kotori feels bad about this. Kouhei attempts to comfort her, and it works somewhat. Meanwhile, Tsumugi gets in trouble again, forcing Kouhei to scold her… again. This time, Kouhei is honest and tells Tsumugi that he doesn’t like scolding her. However, if Tsumugi misbehaves, then it’s his job as a parent to scold her. Tsumugi seems to understand and apologizes for her bad behavior.

All’s well that ends well?

Just as the okonomiyaki is finished, Kotori’s mom unexpectedly shows up much to everyone’s surprise. Everyone then has a happy okonomiyaki meal.

Okonomiyaki is on the list of dishes that I want to eat at least once in my life.

My Opinion:

As surprising as it is, yes, this is the last episode. I was expecting something a bit more… significant, I guess? But for a series like Sweetness and Lightning, perhaps a simple happy episode is a good enough ending.

There was next to no actual cooking segment this time, as the main focus was the conflict between Kouhei and Tsumugi; which ended up getting resolved rather beautifully. Kouhei’s words for Kotori (when she expressed being upset that her mother was always away at work) was also rather philosophical. And hey, we got to see Kotori’s mom in person finally! And the ship-teasing between Yagi and Shinobu is still going strong.

Overall, this was a nice episode. To be perfectly honest, I would have liked an ending with slightly more impact. This episode was basically “Tsumugi throws yet another tantrum” and it just kind of felt like a recycled plot point. I’m mostly disappointed at how Kotori’s phobia was just sort of tossed aside. Kotori’s fear of knives had been hinted at all season, and they didn’t even resolve it! The chapter where Kotori explains her fear of knives to Tsumugi would have been a good chapter to end on, but whatever. At this point, I’m just hoping the series is popular enough to get a second season; because there are still so many great chapters that haven’t been animated.

Out of five for this episode:

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Final Thoughts:

After having watched the entirety of Sweetness and Lightning, I do realize now that this anime does have some flaws.

The good points about the anime are that it adapts the source material very well–there’s quite a bit of anime-only stuff that (I feel) made the story work better. The voice acting is superb, and the relationships between all the characters are written well. The strongest point about this anime is how it handles very realistic life situations–like the death of a loved one. These topics are handled rather seriously, but never with melodrama.

The bad points about this anime is that it’s short–the manga is still ongoing, with about 37 chapters out currently. The anime adapts roughly one chapter an episode. With so many chapters to choose from, the anime obviously skipped over a lot of chapters. Also, the animation can come off as rather rough, but it does fit with the overall tone of the series. But the biggest criticism I have for this series is that some episodes can come off as a bit dull. While the anime did try its best to adapt the material, I feel that some chapters work far better in a manga format than in an anime format. The cooking segments were ditched pretty early on, and a few episode just sort of dragged.

Nonetheless, this was still a very charming and relaxing series to watch, which also sometimes punched you in the gut with EMOTIONS. I would absolutely love for there to be a second season. Sometimes you just need a heartwarming anime like this to watch after a hard day.

Out of five for this series as a whole:

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If anything, at least the series ended with a party.

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