Hey all! Sorry for the lack of reviews from me. I had nearly back-to-back workdays, plus I was feeling pretty unwell for the past two weeks. I’m finally feeling a bit better (and finally have some more free time again) so here’s a double review of Senko-san before the final episode airs later this week!

The snow looked very lovely in this episode.

Episode 10 and 11 Summary:

Nakano and Senko awaken one morning to find that it has snowed heavily. Due to the weather, Nakano gets a day off from work and he and Senko enjoy themselves in the snow. Not long after, the two get a visit from a mysterious fox lady: Lady Sora, who is another fox demigod and is also Senko’s superior. Sora teases Nakano with her body, though thankfully all Nakano cares about are her fluffy tails. Before she leaves, Sora ominously warns Nakano not to make Senko sad, or bad things will befall him.

Nakano’s laughter in this scene was precious.

Well, she’s quite pretty.

After the snow, spring eventually returns. After a particularly bad day at work, Senko turns the apartment into an izakaya to cheer Nakano up. Nakano gets completely drunk and starts despairing about what happened at work, but Senko allows him to vent and comforts him.

Nakano crying over work troubles hit a little too close to home so here’s a screencap of Shiro and Sora goofing off instead.

The next day at work, Nakano suddenly finds out he has paid leave time that he hasn’t used yet, and gets a mini “vacation” of sorts. Unfortunately, his vacation starts with a call from his mother, who tells Nakano that his father is in the hospital. With Senko’s encouragement, Nakano decides to return to his hometown to pay his parents a visit. Fortunately, Nakano’s father only broke a bone, and is in relatively good health otherwise. While Nakano is away, Senko slips out of the apartment and seemingly disappears…

And so Nakano returns to the place where it all began…

My Opinion:

Episode 10, while mostly heartwarming, doesn’t give me much material to talk about. Seeing Nakano and Senko playing around in the snow was pretty cute; and it’s always nice to see Nakano so genuinely happy. Sora also makes her “official” appearance here, finally getting a name and also really interacting with Nakano and Senko for the first time. Sora is the type of character that I would usually side-eye, but I found myself liking her a lot. Yeah, she’s obviously trying to sexually seduce Nakano (why the heck are all the foxes so dang obsessed with Nakano anyway?)–but it feels a lot less sleazy seeing what looks like a mature woman doing this, rather than what looks like a kid (*cough*Shiro*cough*). Anyway, I really like her elegant design; which makes me sad that she’ll likely just be seen as the “fanservice lady” within the fandom.

Before she leaves, Sora delivers some ominous foreshadowing to Nakano and the viewers. And so we come to episode 11, the penultimate episode. I’ve seen so many pleasant slice-of-life shows by now that I knew an emotional two parter finale was coming. After giving us one final heartwarming Nakano and Senko interaction, the second half of episode 11 dropped a plot bomb on us by having Senko apparently leave. It’s implied that she’s left Nakano for good, but I get the feeling this is all just a way for the anime director(s) to stir up some drama. With the way this series has been going, I’ll be genuinely surprised if the series does end on a bittersweet note: with Senko really being gone and Nakano having to return to living on his own. I’ll also be really mad if this happens, because having a bittersweet ending just for the sake of having a bittersweet ending is so overdone and such a cop-out. I feel like this sort of story route is so often taken by anime directors in an attempt to make a series more memorable. But playing the audiences’ emotions like this is cheap. (The Senko-san manga is still ongoing, so if the anime does “end” here, it’ll likely be an anime original ending.)

Despite my annoyance at cheap emotional tactics in anime, I still thought episode 11 did a fairly good job of setting up for an emotional finale. I can’t deny that the cliffhanger at the end of the episode was suitably suspenseful. I also liked that the episode opened with Senko reminiscing on how she met child-Nakano… and closed with Nakano realizing that he really did meet Senko in the past. In the end, I’m still a sucker for these types of tropes in anime.

Overall, I’d say that episode 10 and 11 were pretty good as far as Senko-san episodes go. Just for fun, here’s my prediction of how the last episode will go: Nakano will probably come home to find his apartment empty, and will probably run around his neighborhood trying to find Senko. Unable to find her, he’ll return home and despair for the remaining days of his vacation. On his first day back at work, Nakano will have accepted that fact that his life has returned to the “normal” state it was before Senko arrived. Then he comes home from work to find… that Senko has returned! We all thought she was leaving Nakano for good, but the joke’s on us–she just needed to return to the fox realm for a brief period of time. And then Nakano and Senko continue to live happily together.

…Now to wait to see how accurate my prediction is.

Out of five for episodes 10 and 11:

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 I’m a sucker for prettily drawn sakura flowers, and nighttime scenes, like always.