Sasameki Koto – 10
I like that Murasame is allowed to be selfish in this episode.
She’s sitting at a table with a crazy girl methodically putting together fanzines (all for nothing, as the after-credits scene shows), and all Murasame can think about is how great it looks outside, how she wants to be at the beach with her friends and how much she wants to catch an eyeful of Ushio’s enormous jugs. Murasame made a promise (in a roundabout way, and she had to be guilted into it, but it’s a promise nonetheless), and yet all she does for a while is lose herself in frustrated, horny thoughts. And you know what? I don’t blame her at all. Only the truly saintly among us would be sitting there, concentrating completely on work. The rest of us would be staring out the window, concocting ways to get the hell out of there as quickly as possible, along with Murasame.
I think what turns Murasame around at the end is that, even though Aoi is really awkward about it, Murasame can see how much she cares about this fanzine and about spending this time with Murasame. In a way, it might remind Murasame of how much she cares about Ushio and how much of a goof she has been while dealing with that love. Guilt definitely plays a part in Murasame helping Aoi out (only a really heartless person would leave without helping someone that pathetic, even if she is half crazy), but there is a genuine connection between the two — they both love someone or something that isn’t generally accepted, and that they both go out of their way to hide, and with that comes a great deal of loneliness. Murasame knows how it feels to be on the wrong end of that kind of love, so she helps out.
Aoi is kind of nuts, though I can sort of see where she is coming from. She acts horribly toward her mom, who is just trying to help her daughter as much as she can, but Aoi is trying to stamp out her own ground, I think. Parents embarrass their kids sometimes, because, you know, they’re parents. Even when parents aren’t acting embarrassing, teens act as if they are. That’s just how teenagers roll. I acted that way toward my parents during the stage in my life where I was a total asshole. My sister did it, too, and so did my brother. Aoi’s still trying to figure out how to adjust to the world, and her rejection of her mother is essentially her way of saying that she wants to make friends on her own terms without using her parents as a crutch.
The way Aoi acts toward her mom is undeniably mean-spirited. It is also understandable, although it is the kind of behavior that, if she grows up right, Aoi will look back upon one day and feel terrible about. In some ways, I feel similarly toward Aoi as I did toward Mirai from Tokyo Magnitude 8.0: She’s being completely bratty, and if I knew her in real life, I’d probably have nothing to do with her, but deep down I can see she is not really a bad person — just incredibly misguided. (Although maybe Aoi has some yandere fujoshi potential. Who knows?)
Just so every screenshot in this post doesn’t have someone crying . . .
As usual, the humor made me grin a lot. Half of me wants to see what kind of horrors the girls had to endure on the way to the beach (is Tomoe as bad a driver as Yukari from Azumanga Daioh?), and the other half thinks it is probably best if we never know, haha. I also had a good laugh at Ushio’s poor disguise — even Ogiue from Genshiken could disguise herself better than that! Then again, it doesn’t seem as if she was trying that hard to hide herself from the girls — seeing as she, you know, went home with them — so I won’t dock her too many points for that.