Let’s start with the most important! How are you Moya? Did you guys get snow too? It’s soooo pretty and white here and just littered with snow creations. There’s like an 8-foot tall snow guardian in front of my building. And I know you are quite the snow artist so I’m hoping you got some good access to your materials!

We did, for a weekend! Nothing like an 8-foot snow guardian (wow!), but I did build a thing. The sweetest part of building things out of snow is getting to discover the nice strangers in your neighbourhood – bits and pieces would fall apart over time and as the snow melts, but somebody always tries to help fix things before I get to it!

Glad to hear that you’re quite the snow enthusiast as well! Did you build anything yourself?

Not yet, but I would like to get the snow guardian a snow poodle for company.

I’ll just let you guys all know right away that this was probably my least favourite episode of Horimiya to date. I still liked it a lot mind you, just not as much as the others.

It started off super cute and I thought to myself that it’s really cool how Yuki and Toru are friends and their friendship isn’t undervalued. And then the episode sort of laughed directly in my face. Oh well. I still do like how they are portraying Yuki through this and that she is finally getting a chance at the limelight. Her character seems the most instantly familiar to me. I’m sort of a doormat too and I recognize myself a lot in her. So it was nice that she seemed like a really sweet girl.

Still, Moya, what do you think of a second love triangle in this series?

You know, I kind of knew that a love triangle was coming up, because I remember something bittersweet about Sakura’s introduction to the story when I read the manga (just forgot the actual plot part, haha). True, it would be nice to see more platonic friendships across sexes – not just in anime either – but I’m open to this development and the chance to examine Yuki’s feelings.

I too relate to Yuki, although I’m probably even more of a Sakura. Overthinking, self-conscious nerd sounds 100% like high school me. The part about baking cookies to return favours that people probably didn’t think much of too, haha…

There’s something poetic about the guy who got his heartbroken but was really awesome about it now having two completely separate girls into him. I say two, but I’m really digging Toru as well, so like 2 and a half…

I know, right? Toru is such a king. Care if I join you in the fanclub?

Ok, but only you! It’s an exclusive club. cough!

My favourite part of the episode was maybe the conversation between Kouno and the President when she asked him what he liked about Remi. It was a bit clumsy at first but he kind of hit it out of the park at the end there. It’s the type of question that comes up all the time in romance anime and I find there’s rarely a good answer. The fact that neither Sengoku nor Kouno even mentioned that Remi’s cute as a reason to like her made me really happy for some reason!

The focus on “protection” was interesting. Clearly, Sengoku and Sakura are both well-aware of the murky power dynamics that the concept involves, and Sengoku seems to struggle with where to place himself in that relationship. One detail that the subtitler understandably left out is the part where Sengoku says “I want to protect her as a man.” Sengoku realizes that what he said probably came across cringey to Sakura, and is prompted to reflect on how at the end of the day, he is also receiving protection from Remi.

Another interesting thing about Sengoku and Remi is how the anime never draws attention to their relationship status, and kind of just makes us assume alongside the rest of the characters that they have a thing going on. With the lack of intimate interactions between Sengoku and Remi on screen, it’s somewhat ambiguous as to whether they’re actually dating, even though that seems to be how others assess their relationship. That’s kind of how high school drama works though, so I like how it’s presented.

It’s the second part that lost me a tiny bit. It was just a little too dramatic for my taste. Not the events mind you, Miyamura having to go on a short trip is hardly a tragedy. And not the reactions. I actually thought it was adorable how much Hori missed her boyfriend. And justified. At the beginning of a relationship and all. I would have been exactly the same.  The entire sequence of events was cute and relatable. But the cinematic language was so dramatic. Lingering shots of her longing face, harsh contrasting light, constant returns to the cell phone with no new messages. He’s not dead you guys. It’s going to be alright.

I think the dramatic reactions are in line with how the show does comedy, but true, the way they are depicted leaves more to be desired. Maybe the fact that Miyamura is attending a funeral adds to the tragedy unnecessarily. The most jarring part to me was the music that started playing as Hori ran into the elevator. I did anticipate music to kick in at the moment, but it wasn’t a wholesome and feelsy track, but something intense and kind of loud?

And I do think they carried this overserious treatment over to the horror movie act. In my opinion, they really should have played that entire sequence for laughs more and gone slapstick with it.

And that’s really sort of what bugged me the entire episode. It was so serious for no reason. I’m pretty sure that when I read those vignettes in the manga I was playing silly circus music in my head cause they are written like straight-up comedy bits. 

I did find Miyamura’s screams during the movie a bit amusing, but yeah, the follow-up was a bit much. It reminded me of the other room scene a few episodes ago when Hori was sick, but that one had more of a reason to be emotional than this.

Also, did they…? Was that..? No, right? Not my innocent angels? 

No…no, I don’t think they possibly could have? They probably kissed and then fainted from embarrassment for the next 40 minutes??

All in all, the episode felt a little tonally off for me. It was also more narratively disjointed than what we’ve seen. All the acts felt like they were flowing into each other but there was a disconnect. Almost as if we were jumping back and forth through the story. This isn’t a huge issue, and it could even be interesting when done right, but this week it felt like a bit of an adaptation slip up for me.

I agree for the most part. The Sakura-Toru-Yuki triangle was by far the stronger part of the episode. I wonder if it’s because Hori and Miyamura got through the biggest rom-com hurdles too soon, and are so well-adjusted that the show now has to stir up silly drama just so they can continue showing things happening. Speaking of which, where did yuri stalker girl next door vanish to??

I do remember Hori and Miyamura’s relationship taking a back seat at a certain point in the manga, but if that means more time to explore the side characters, I’m all for it!

Or maybe I’m just being sour because by the time it got to the muffin scene, I had really gotten into Yuki’s story and I wanted to see more! Oh well, there’s always next week!

Same! I thought for a second that Yuki was really going to Miyamura’s family bakery to learn the real tricks, but too bad that didn’t happen. There’s always next week indeed.

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11 thoughts

  1. Interesting – somehow I liked this episode more than previous ones. I do agree that the mood was far too serious and not in line with other, far lighter episodes. I guess I preferred that seriousness itself regardless of its context.

      1. Yeah, but then there’s the other side of the coin – being overdramatic is also not great. Still, the genre is big enough for everyone to find something to like.

  2. My least favourite episode so far, too, mostly because the transitions were weird, and I spent a lot of the show re-orienting myself, missing some of the set-up in the process. I also felt that, at least in the beginning of the episode, the characters weren’t well integrated with the backgrounds. Not sure if there’s a difference in quality I picked up on, or whether I was in some sort of strange “visual mood”. (These exist for me; some days I can be hypersensitive to such things. Not sure whether that’s connected with my motionsickness/photosensitivity, but it doesn’t occur with any symptoms.)

    And, yeah, I’m totally Yuki, too. Less so now that I’m older, but my teenage self was almost a carbon copy (comfortable in too long sleeves [though summer uniform this episode], stepping back when “someone else wants it, too”, mumbled resentment immediately glossed over because “unfair”… practically the only difference is that I probably wouldn’t have attempted muffins).

    I must say Sakura appearing in the doorway with the too big jeary zipped up over the chin was an extremely cute image.

    1. Agree on everything!
      I probably wouldn’t have attempt muffins either and that’s what made me kind of proud of Yuki! Like I wish I would have attempted muffins back then. Now I have much less issues with that.

  3. I’m not all that fond of love triangles, so I can’t say that I’m pleased that there’s a love triangle introduced in this episode. At least Yuki gets her spot in the limelight, and if there’s anyone who deserves to have more than one person in love with him, it’s Toru.

    Did any of you watch the after credits scene? I think that makes it even harder to deny what happened between Hori and Miyamura. 😂

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