Yowamushi Pedal: Episode 26

空が見える – I Can See the Sky

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It’s the start of the Inter-High and the end of the first leg of day one at Hakone, and we saw in the previous episode which sprinter emerged victorious. This episode continues immediately after that, as we move on to the next part of the race – Hakone Mountain.

Okay, where exactly the Spring 2014 portion of Yowamushi Pedal started, I am not sure. But I take it that a new OP means a new segment, which just so happens to be episode 26. Therefore, Spring 2014 Yowamushi Pedal coverage shall start from episode 26. Anyway, moving on..

At the front. It was a beautiful moment when Imaizumi said “Excuse me, coming through”. That was when Souhoku’s sprint victory really materialised. Not only did I cheer a little when Tadokoro’s win finally sank in, but I was also very touched that it was his win, his effort that put his team at the front of the pack. And the fact that Hakone let them through – that further affirmed Souhoku’s win for the first leg of the race. The front is a lovely place and as Imaizumi has said many times, “it’s quiet at the front – 先頭は静かだ”.

Abs aren’t everything. Confused and a little upset that he and his perfect body lost, Izumida could not help but question the Souhoku sprinters why they did not try to avoid the cones. Both Naruko and Tadokoro simply answered – because they would lose time. We can see here that the finish line was their only focal point and all they wanted was to get there as quickly as possible. Nothing else mattered and they were not going to let anything else get in their way, even if it meant facing the risk of falling. That was the difference between them and Izumida. They were not going be worried or bothered about ancillary matters, all they did was to think positively about reaching their goal. And that was what pulled them through.

Lead the way up Hakone. Ride in front, climb Hakone Mountain with the team in tow – that was the job that Onoda was given. I have to say, for a beginner and this being his first ever competition, this is a monumental task for Onoda. His shock upon hearing captain Kinjou’s orders was completely understandable, however what moved me was when Onoda recovered instantly and promised that he would definitely lead the team up the mountain.

First to last. Sadly, almost immediately after he accepted his job, Onoda got caught up in a massive fall and fell to last place. It was a sigh inducing moment, because he was just given such an important job and he messes up before even starting. What made it worse was when the distressed boy started panicking. As if falling, injuring himself and losing time were not bad enough; the chain on his bicycle also came off. It was as if everything bad that could happen occurred all at once. Talk about bad luck AND bad timing. Furthermore, the fact that news of him being in last place rattled his team mates made it all the more exasperating, especially since Naruko and Tadokoro fought so hard to secure Souhoku’s place at the front of the pack. However, as Onoda has proven time and again, it is that he always overcomes such obstacles. So here’s hoping he overcomes this one.

I’m Toudou. One character I am really enjoying is Toudou from Hakone Academy, voiced by the very cute and extremely energetic Kakihara Tetsuya (most famously known as Natsu in Fairy Tail). It was definitely love at first listen & sight with this character, because I was so intrigued by his fascination with Maki-chan, as well as the playfulness he exudes. Also, that perma-smirk he has going on makes him all the more adorable. He is so full of himself, and is narcissistic to the point of being annoying, but he’s provided so many good laughs with his appearances. And due the fact that Kakki voices him, this character’s got a special place in my heart. So evidently, I am really looking forward to this segment of the race.

Sheep butler. Possibly what I most look forward to each episode would be the little snippets after the end credits. This episode, Onoda and the gang went to the cinema for a Hime movie. The Hime movie was a hilarious spoof on Kuroshitsuji. And coincidentally, all three seiyuus (Tamura YukariKaji Yuuki and Suwabe Junichi) in that Hime clip were in Kuroshitsuji as well. While it was such a treat hearing all three of them voicing such ridiculously LOL characters, the clincher for me was seeing Imaizumi so passionately battling with his emotions. Haha talk about denial (but we’ve all been there, haven’t we?) Oh Imaizumi, it was evident in the previous episodes but with this one.. you showed viewers that you have totally been converted.

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