With drama out of the way, the Kansai Competition is finally here. Hashimoto and Niiyama bid their farewells and good luck to the students as they won’t be handing around.
Taking everything they’ve learnt and the blood sweat and tears that they’ve poured in, they give the competition a performance of their lives.
After playing their hearts out, they end the competition in gold and with a spot at nationals.
Firstly a caveat from me, if I sound a little off or overly critical, it’s because at the time of writing this, I was in a foul mood and was losing hope in humanity and becoming more cynical than normal… so hopefully when you’re reading this a few days on I’ll be back to normal and may have made some fairer comments. Maybe you think I should delay writing this, but unfortunately time is tight and when I have a plan in place I’m still going to go with it… steamroll through!
Surely I’m not the only one unsurprised by the fact that they reached nationals right? It’s five episodes in, if they don’t make it, I wouldn’t except much story left to tell. That said, if they failed, it’s likely some rift would’ve appeared between people and the anime degrades to fixing ridiculous overemphasized melodrama that would likely happen to no reason in particular.
I felt there was a shortage of build up leading up to the competition as well, maybe it’s because I’m only now catching up on the episodes so I haven’t realised all of the build up, but as far as I’m aware recent episodes have been focused elsewhere and then suddenly we’re one day away from the competition. That surprised me, I felt they could’ve built it up over another episode or half. Or maybe throw some of the musical performance time to that build up instead of actually playing music. Sure it showed off their hard work but that felt way too long to listen to, in fact I started up my PS4 and played something else whilst that went on.
Okay reading that back to myself and rewatching the performance, that was definitely way too harsh. The performance was really good, and I can’t fault KyoAni for the production. From the small movements of the performers and the not quite in line trombones to the amazing solo and fluid sweat drops on everyone, it was all done spectacularly. I’ll be honest, scenes like this likely require more animation than a shounen fight scene and I don’t see many of them even being on the same level as this quality. Although it has to be said that overall animation quality has improved tremendously in recent times and I have seen many more studios make good use of it for heavy animated scenes to show off their production abilities.
And also, I guess there was build up in the episode. The nervousness of everyone showed, from Haruka’s stuttering to Yoroizuka’s chat with Nozomi, which also acted as a nice wrap up from the events of the last few episodes. It’s good to see some more character show through and how everyone was nervous in their own way.
And actually, y’know what, as much as we all saw their win coming, half of that was because of the performance. I may not know music as well as I used to, and may not have seen the other performances, but even I can tell that their performance was definitely an amazing piece of art.
Right, seeing as this is one of the very few times where I’ve had to rethink and rewatch the episode, I’ll leave it here before my current emotions get the better of me. Thankfully this was an episode that was a little low on plot content anyway. This is the type of episode that should be watched and not read, of course that could be said for every anime episode, but you know what I mean. So I say pay attention to the performance and be amazed.