I contemplated bundling the episode 7 and 8 posts together, since nothing major really happens in episode 7, except for the reveal to episode 8, but I haven’t bundled any posts yet, so what the hell. Might as well keep things going as is. Thankfully, I should be finally caught up and current by the next episode though.
Argh, I was hoping Naoi could’ve disappeared in the last episode. Now he’s making kissy faces at Otonashi, tagging along like a trained puppy, to Hinata’s dismay. However, he does prove to be a useful plot point as Yuri uses him to get Otonashi’s memories back.
Sick, bedridden loli sister? Emo, hopeless oni-chan? Yep, in case you forgot, this is still a Key series.
I actually never wanted to know Otonashi’s history, because I felt like the absence of it made him an X-factor. A member of the group that wasn’t driven by hatred for God, or the injustice in his past life, but for his own unique reasons. With that said, the flashback wasn’t terrible. It was Key stereotypical, but I did like seeing emo Otonashi turn his life around, and find a reason for living that didn’t involve wolf girls, paralyzed dream girls, or little junkyard robots. He just happened to find inspiration and motivation after his sister died. The power of the human spirit, eh?
Of course, it doesn’t end well, as he dies tragically in a train accident. But compared to Yuri’s, Hinata’s and Iwasawa’s past, Otonashi’s memories seem less tinged with hatred or despondency. I hope his memories don’t change his character.
So except for Otonashi’s memories, nothing else interesting happens. The group go fishing, Otonashi invites Kanade, and everyone gets along, a giant fish gets killed by Kanade’s clone *la la la.* Business as usual.
I do like the budding "romance" between Kanade and Otonashi – if you can even call it that. But the way their relationship or friendship is developing seems much more natural and gradual than the contrived, beat-you-over-the-head style I’m used to typically seeing from Key shows. When Otonashi tells Kanade that he thinks she has a pretty name, it feels "normal." Like something you might say in real life to someone you may or may not like. In contrast to say, for example, telling your horrid "violinist" friend that she’s actually good and encouraging her to stage a concert, because you have some sort of bizarre savior complex. By removing the harem element, and the need to force flag triggers, it’s like the characters have been given a wide open sky to breath in.
Of course, the big twist is that there’s an evil Tenshi on the loose. You can tell by the big, evil red eyes.