To see why Haru likes sleeping by the window so much, Subaru also tests it out; and has dreams about his youth. He remembers how his parents fully supported his reading and writing hobby; how he met his friend Hiroto; and how he won a writing contest/award, kickstarting his writing career.
Subaru is then rudely awakened by Hiroto, who had entered Subaru’s house and had fallen down after trying to avoid stepping on Haru’s tail. As Subaru and Hiroto reminisce about their childhood, Subaru suddenly collapses with a fever. Subaru’s caught a cold, and he’s quickly taken care of by Hiroto and Kawase (who had stopped by after Subaru’s collapse). Although his house is noisier than ever, Subaru feels somewhat happy to have the company. And Subaru is especially thankful that he met Haru.
Main characters getting sick is a really common theme/trope in slice-of-life anime, so it was really only a matter of time before we got a “sick day” episode in My Roommate is a Cat. Thankfully, Subaru getting sick wasn’t the main focus of the episode. Rather, it was used to show how much his friends cared about him.
In this episode, we finally get to see how a such a withdrawn kid like Subaru became friends with someone as cheerful and outgoing as Hiroto. And it turns out that they’re neighbors. Hiroto thinks Subaru is weird
(even in the present time lol), but he appreciated Subaru’s love of books and they became friends. As a person who identifies more with Subaru, I would find Hiroto’s personality pretty exhausting as well. But I also love Hiroto as a character–he’s just so friendly and relaxed; and I like how supportive he is of Subaru.
A special mention also goes to Kawase: he’s Subaru’s editor but he seems to view Subaru as a friend. In the professional world, writers and editors probably have a mostly professional relationship (I say “probably” because I’m not an author and don’t know much about the book publishing industry). But it’s really heartwarming to see how much Kawase cares about Subaru. This man doesn’t just care about Subaru out of business obligation, he cares about Subaru’s actual well-being.
A good chunk of the “flashback sequence” in this episode was dedicated to Subaru remembering his parents. It’s really touching that Subaru had such loving and supportive parents. From my own experience as a long-time anime fan, I’ve sadly seen far more abusive/neglectful parents portrayed in anime. This just makes it all the more heartwrenching that Subaru’s parents died so early in his life and career. It makes me kind of annoyed(?) that Subaru’s parents had to die just to kick off the plot; and also makes me wonder if Subaru could have still met Haru and changed if his parents were still around. But I guess Subaru wouldn’t have started appreciating his parents until after he lost them…
Overall, this was a decent episode. Like with Haru’s extended flashback episode (episode 6), this really serves to delve more into Subaru’s life/backstory. I have mixed feelings about long flashbacks, but in this case I think it works–it helps to flesh out Subaru and his relationship(s) more. And, as always, the Haru segments are always fun to watch.
Out of five: