Well, it was only a matter of time, I suppose.
This show continues to play a dangerous game in the melodramatic balancing act it’s decided to put on. And for myself that scale may have finally tipped a bit because uuugh. Episode 9 just hurts to watch. It’s yet another episode of Tsutsui doing Tsutsui things. Worry about how he’s managed to screw up this time. And while I can understand, to an extent, how his total dimness regarding social situations is problematic, this one just beat the trope into the ground relentlessly.
But there’s a very crystal clear reason why Episode 9 is such a chore. It’s literally there to fill space. The problem is pointed out several times. And yet it’s just… ignored. This time the issue is Iroha. It just is. It’s glaringly obvious that it is. She knows that it is. After she’s found, she admits that it is and apologizes for it. And yet the angst drags on. And on. And on and on. For far longer than it should. The episodes aren’t even that long, but this situation, much like many of them throughout the show’s running, could have been resolved much faster. Thus they make the episodes feel a lot longer than they are.
Made no better by the fact that everyone but Iroha put the blame on Tsutsui because he’s friggin’ nice to people. Seriously? That’s what you chalk the problem up to? That is unfathomably stupid. Ito at least got angry at him for what could be seen as an understandable reason. But Ishino and that other guy continue to be portrayed in this light of “they’re right because they have social lives.” But they’re not. They’re wrong. Objectively. Iroha admits that her reason for being upset is selfish and that the problem falls on her. Yes. Tsutsui is part of the problem in that he’s unable to really understand what made her upset (when, in this case, it should’ve been obvious and it goes against all of his character development that he didn’t figure it out on his own even if a bit late to the party). But that isn’t how the episodes framed the issue. And that creates a problem in following the narrative and rooting for literally anyone. Because in this scenario, everyone’s awful.
Because of that, it sort of lessens the overall effect of the resolution when it finally does come during the first half of the next episode. And while that resolution is undeniably sweet, with Tsutsui finally telling Iroha how he feels (albeit in an extremely roundabout way), it just has a tremendous uphill battle ahead of it after the tedium of the setup it took to get there. Another thing I would note, though, is that I kind of find it interesting how the show defies expectations by not having the rest of the supporting cast be paired up as well. It’s just amusing. I wouldn’t really have cared if it had gone that route. I’m down with everyone getting their happy ending. But it’s always kind of cool when it takes a different direction. And Ito’s reaction to being in the unrequited love situation is actually quite admirable in how graceful he is about it.
The second half/final third of episode 10 is basically dedicated to having Iroha and Tsutsui spending time together after having reconciled. I actually kind of like how this particular episode shifted a bit, telling things from Iroha’s perspective for a while, rather than Tsutsui’s. And learning a bit more about her was nice. And seeing her and Tsutsui spending some bonding time together and actually doing things other than just sitting around, talking (even if they were fairly stock dating tropes) was cute and a nice way to sort of let Iroha discover more about the guy she’s in love with. And, of course, cause her to fall even more in love with him. Because he does possess the ability to be charming, even if unintentionally.
So there you have it. One really irritating episode I’m more than happy to Pass on and one that I’d say is perfectly Harmless, possibly even Easy Viewing, if it’s enjoyed in a vacuum and the previous one is disregarded. This little balancing act is unfortunately growing tiresome. But now there are two episodes left to wrap things up. Which is interesting. I can maybe think there’ll be a time skip or the series isn’t actually going all the way to the conclusion of the source material. Because the episode specifically states that there are still three months before Iroha has to leave. So I dunno. We’ll see. If you’d prefer a different kind of romance with different kinds of problems, there’s Nil Admirari no Tenbin.
3D Kanojo: Real Girl streams on HiDive. That’s all I’ve got for ya here. As always, thanks for reading, folks. Keep up the awesome.