涙のシックスビート – The Six-Beat Kick of Tears!
I was telling my fellow writers that Free! may have its moments of gayness, but it isn’t all that gay. Then this episode came along and slapped my comment in the face. Hard.
Jokes aside, this episode was really quite heavy. We got a glimpse into Sousuke’s and Rin’s past, the relay they swam together when they were younger and why they were separated for a good part of their childhood. More importantly, Sousuke finally revealed that what he told Rin at the start of this season was a lie. He was not scouted; in fact he had nowhere to go. Having sustained a shoulder injury two years earlier, his shoulder has pretty much broken down to the point at which it can’t be used very freely any more. Having dreamt of swimming on the international stage, this setback was (and still is) a painful and difficult one for Sousuke. Over the years, he had worked so hard, trained so diligently and challenged his limits, taking one step closer to his dream stage. But it all came crashing down when he injured his shoulder. And to know that his dream would never come true made him miserable. Of course, it is understandable that any aspiring sports person in his situation would feel the way he does. Giving up something so close and dear to you has definitely got to hurt.
However, it is what Sousuke did AFTER knowing he could no longer swim properly that was quite surprising, albeit very cheesy. He simply wanted to swim with Rin one more time (yes, the Sousuke Rin thing is a recurring theme…). It is a precious thing to be able to swim with friends, and Sousuke very much wanted to be able to experience that, to truly become Rin’s friend, before he completely gave up swimming. This falls into the scope of all things Free!, because again there is that focus on friendship. So once again, this series gives us a hearty does of camaraderie, with Sousuke wanting to swim the relay with his teammates – the best possible relay on the best possible team. With that wrecked shoulder, all I can say is: reckless.
And so, even though the Samezuka team lost to Iwatobi by a fraction of a second, Sousuke still managed to find what he had been so desperately searching for all this time. With Rin’s shout of encouragement, Sousuke mustered up the strength to complete his leg of the relay. And I guess from his perspective, that was victory all the same. Sousuke has finally gotten the friendship with Rin that he has been fighting for, and I am happy that he is happy ^^
Despite the relay team having advanced to the nationals, Haru still has some unresolved issues. A week later and I am still reeling from the shock that he gave us last episode. He really should have been able to make it to nationals with his freestyle. But ohwells, such is life… when you are plagued by thoughts of goodness knows what, you lose focus.
Muscle-scope. Right from the very beginning! But ouch, that shoulder looks like it is in a whole lot of pain. Not good.
Till the next water time~