Doesn’t everyone want to be a hero?
This episode let the silliness go, and was rewarded for it. Our Heroes started their part time jobs at the market, with the added fun of fighting some bad guys – the other shopkeepers dressed up in black leotards. And we really get to see Wien’s passion, fearlessly starting the show when the rest of the choir is too self-conscious to be seen in public in hero suits. But fun is infectious and so much of the fun of being a performer is doing something that you know is actually embarrassing and ridiculous, and pulling it off. And when you do, it transforms from being embarrassing and ridiculous to fun for the performers and the audience. And we see how good the reaction is, as the choir’s performances go from getting a ‘huh?’ reaction to having kids make hero poses and finally to drawing a full crowd and applause. It was also fun to see Sawa and Shiho’s ‘epic’ mother-daughter face off.
But alas, some people just can’t let anyone else have fun, and of course the killjoys from the vocal group rat the choir out to the Vice-Principal, who wants them to stop, but is refuted by the trio of Konatsu, Sawa, and Wakana, with the additional backup of her previous approval. Wien is happy they supported his desires, and his dreams of becoming a real hero look like they’ll come to pass as a thief decides to steal Konatsu’s bag during one of their performances. Wien immediately chases after him, and as silly as the idea of a runner chasing after a bike is, the sequence is a lot of fun, and we get to see deeper into Wien’s motivations, as he wants to always do the right thing, and is glad to have the support of the other people in the choir. I think this hero arc did a lot to show that the choir folks aren’t just coincidental fellow travelers, but that they’ve accepted a guy like Wien into friendship, even if he’s a bit odd, and that they’ve come to accept the way the other people in the group are.
The other story in this week’s episode dealt with Naoko (the Vice-Principal) dealing with the still-unknown-to-us nefarious plan for the school. In thinking about all the success that had been built at the school, she thinks back to the start, when Mahiru started the original choir, and wrote songs with Naoko. Through flashbacks, we see the difference in temperament between the two, Mahiru freely exploring melodies while Nao just listens, trying to take it seriously. And when Wakana asks Naoko about how to write songs, rather than try to impart her own ideas Naoko relates Mahiru’s methods: enjoy it, have fun, don’t make it work.
Loosening up a little can feel much better.
Why is Naoko so intent on pushing away or denying any connection to the past, to Mahiru, or even to Wakana? She makes a big deal about how she never showed any favoritism to Wakana, nor treated her any differently? And even in the flashbacks we see of her visit to Mahiru in the hospital, she repeatedly corrected the name of the choir to the vocal group, and was obviously uncomfortable talking about music, about writing a song together. We have heard before that Naoko felt somewhat abandoned by Mahiru, when she unthinkingly snapped “Why did she go off and do her own thing, then?” Are there plans that Naoko felt had been made that were then broken? Or is it more that she felt lost when this uplifting spirit flew away from her, and she couldn’t keep up? Perhaps she feels the divide between having natural talent and succeeding through hard work is at play here, similar to the friction we’ve seen between Konatsu and Naoko.
Seriously, what are they trying to survey?
None of the Principal’s hair this week, but we do see some surveyors moving in, and that puts a very different face on the secret plan. Is the school building to be demolished? It would seem odd that just an expansion would be so threatening.