Rikka’s room is as full as this episode
Man, where to start. Well, first, let’s start with the fact that I was anticipating the second episode of this series more than I’ve anticipated any television show, maybe ever. I loved the first episode, and wanted to see more. So for the second episode, maybe my expectations were a little high. But honestly, they were met with flying colors.
Will Shinka turn out to be the love interest?
First, we got some new characters. We found out who Shinka Nibutani was last week, but this week we got to see some interaction between her and Yuuta, as they have been elected the class reps. Shinka doesn’t seem to fall into the normal pretty-but-out-of-reach girl character, and even brings up their meeting the first day of school on the train platform. They have a nice bit of conversation, and Yuuta’s working up the courage to ask if she wants to do something, like walk home together, when Rikka shows up, and then Shinka gets to see how Rikka and Yuuta interact. We don’t really get a reaction out of her, but that’s probably good, considering the normal reaction would be bad.
Kumin seems like a mix of Mayaka Ibara and Tsumugi Kotobuki
On hearing of the cat Rikka found, Shinka does point them to another new character, Kumin Tsuriya (and in another Houtarou-ish moment, Yuuta butchers reading her name). Kumin has lost her cat, so they invite her over to see if the one Rikka has found is it. In the process, Kumin gets a full dose of Rikka’s weirdness, as well as some unintentional views of Yuuta’s past, and she couldn’t enjoy it more! Even if Yuuta gets embarrassed about things like fanboying over a Mauser C96, Kumin just seems to eat it all up. And in the process we meet the third new character this week: The Administration Bureau’s strongest Priestess!
Tooka on the chase!
Well, really, it’s Rikka’s older sister, Tooka Takanashi. Tooka’s been dealing with Rikka’s delusions for a couple years, and doesn’t particularly care for them, but generally seems to indulge her, including fighting her with a ladle. The part she can’t abide, however, is when Rikka brings home stray cats because of allergies. I loved Tooka’s character, and felt she had just the right balance of “no-nonsense” and “okay, some nonsense, and I’m going to use your nonsense against you”. She also shows a scarily prepared side, pulling out a pocket recorder that has a file from 2 years previous, with Yuuta claiming to be the Dark Flame Master from the balcony below, which she apparently has been holding in case she needed something to blackmail him with. Maybe she really is an agent of the Adminstration Bureau!
An amazing battle!
To be honest, I have to keep suppressing the urge to write ‘hijinks ensue’ in these posts. Because with the inevitability of the sun rising in the east, the crazy things keep happening, and a lot of them are fed by Rikka’s imagination (but not all, and I think that’s a good aspect of the show). I really loved the fight between Rikka and Tooka, and that it was so grandiose in her head, but also that Yuuta and Kumin totally got into it without seeing the amazing things that were happening in her mind. But inevitably, Rikka was going to lose, with a resounding *CONK!*, to her ladle-laden sister, who rounds up the others, and chastises them before walking away in triumph.
I’m really hoping that the point of the show is that it’s good to have some fantasy. We haven’t seen anyone outright shun Rikka or Yuuta because of their weirdness. Yes, Yuuta gets embarrassed, and his sister Kuzuha uses his embarrassment as a way to control him, but even Kuzuha thinks there’s a little coolness there, even if it’s almost completely destroyed by the times it crosses paths with reality (like hiding his gun and suspicious coat when a policeman rides by). Of the rest of the cast we’ve been introduced to, the general response to Rikka has been amused or even admiring. And we can really see the conflict that Yuuta goes through, trying to divorce himself from his past when he still obviously thinks it’s cool. Will he ever embrace the Dark Flame Master again?
I gush and gush about the show up there, there’s no way I can come up with something bad. Instead, let’s see Tooka’s awesome jump over the balcony!
There aren’t even any ugly characters to make fun of in this section. Even Chimaera the cat looked cute enough in those silly wings. So let’s see some great screenshots! And scroll down to the bottom for a bonus gif!