Kimi ni Todoke – 18
Man, how weird would it have been if Chizuru actually liked Pin instead of Ryu’s brother? They seem to have some decent chemistry together. Then again, after the whole Kurumi fiasco, Chizuru probably realized that Pin is this show’s Baka-Raptor, and that their love was doomed from the start, so then she remembered Ryu’s brother and decided to focus all her love on him to stir up some DORAMA.
Seems pretty obvious to me where this is going: Ryu’s brother has a girlfriend/fiance/wife he is bringing home to the family. He’s probably not married to the girl he’s bringing home, or else the whole damn town would probably be talking about how the Sanada kid got married without telling his family, so that is out. Of the two remaining options, I would say “fiance” is more likely. It’s more dramatic that way — a fiance suggests permanence. He’s already willing to marry this girl, but he can’t yet because he doesn’t have the blessing of both families yet, or because he’s too cheap to afford a wedding right now. (The latter would be my reason. Weddings are expensive! My dream girl would be as unbelievably cheap and penny-pinching as I am.)
Even though I am 99 percent sure I know where this is going, I don’t think this is a bad episode. I like seeing Chizuru all happy and bouncing around and buying shit for Ryu. (Random aside: When the hell did a miniskirt become winter clothing? I mean in places outside of the American Southwest, that is. Not that I am complaining, mind.) Sawako is a fun foil for her, too. We don’t really see those two alone that often, do we? It’s amusing seeing Sawako speculate about who Chizuru likes and be completely sure that it is Ryu, although the fact that Sawako is so sure of it should be a pretty obvious hint to the viewer that the show is setting up a CRAZY SWERVE. Too bad Sawako cannot break the fourth wall and view this plot from the outside.
Ayane’s break-up with her college-aged boyfriend is actually rather shocking for the idealized world of Kimi ni Todoke. I didn’t think the show would go so far as to portray actual abuse, but there you go. I would be surprised if that pathetic wretch didn’t show up at least once more during the course of the series. He’s miserable and he’s horny, which is not a good combination. Wish I could bet on things like, “That guy will stalk Ayane to her high school at least once before the show ends”. Easy money right there. I wonder if this episode will start another rash of Ayane-based rumors, too. She caught everyone’s eye when she stepped into the classroom with that bandage on her cheek, even though she tries her best to deflect all the attention.
(I’m being tongue-in-cheek, but I actually do think Ayane’s short bit is actually rather respectful to her situation. The abuse isn’t really exploited for melodramatic purposes, and while Ayane undoubtedly feels quite a bit of pain about the shitty way her relationship turned out, she is at least able to take a position of power and move on from her loser boyfriend.)
Her story seems a stark contrast to the other events in the episode, but its purpose (or one of them, anyway) is to prepare viewers for another Drama Wave. I hear that Chizuru’s story can be resolved in just one more episode, though, so maybe it will not be dragged out a ridiculous amount like, uh, every other arc so far.
Not totally sure if this gentleman is Ryu’s brother, but I am guessing it is. I wonder what kind of person he is. He seems like the flamboyant type (complete opposite of Ryu), but that could just be the series setting up some visual stereotyping.