“What’s Strengthened is our Bonds and our Reigns”
In which we get more Wakamatsu being bullied by Seo, and more Kashima getting beaten up by Hori, and the rest of the gang being adorably ridiculous.
The first half of the episode focuses on a little date-not-date that Seo invited Wakamatsu to. This is of course prime material for Nozaki in regards to his side characters’ stories. The date goes exactly like any date with Seo would; horribly for the other person, but extremely entertaining for us viewers as we get to see the two of them at complete cross-purposes. It was so funny how Wakamatsu seems to idolise Nozaki and thus literally took a page out of Nozaki’s manga and read through what to wear to the date-not-date. His snazzy – kind of dated, babe – outfit was perfectly in character, if slightly embarrassing. My favourite part about their entire date was the little argument over which armrest belonged to whom and the way Wakamatsu possessively hugged his armrest after while Seo rests her arm on top of his head was just too funny. He’s such an entertaining character and I really wish he’d been in nearer from the start because he’s such a source of endearing amusement in this show. I completely understand why Nozaki wrote one of his side female characters after him because he’s just this soft-hearted, emotional guy and I just feel so sorry for him but can’t help but laugh at him at the same time. Seo really is such a dude in the coolest of ways and has zero EQ and may or may not be a tad psychotic considering her amusement over all the violence during the movie. It’s so obvious that Wakamatsu reads into their interaction way more than Seo does, but I feel like she thinks of him less as a romantic interest and more of a pet. Weird, but that’s the vibe I’m getting. It’s no wonder that Nozaki said so himself that he can’t really root for the two characters they represent in his manga and that they’re likely doomed to fail. Chiyo has other thoughts about the matter but she is a romantic…
I do kind of understand where Nozaki is coming from, though, when Wakamatsu happens to hear some really beautiful singing, not knowing that it’s Seo, and wants to find out who this Lorelei is. It’s another series of misunderstandings – as this series seems to be renowned for – when Kashima seeks Seo out for singing lessons because the next play Hori’s organising is a musical and she happens to be horrible at singing. One evening Wakamatsu sees Seo walking into a music room and waits around to hear her, not realising that Kashima was inside for one of her lessons. As expected, Wakamatsu mistakes Kashima’s horrible voice for Seo’s and despairs over her poor, unfortunate self, for having a voice like that despite being in the music club. So yeah, I totally see where Nozaki’s coming from when he doesn’t see anything positive coming out of their not-quite-relationship.
In the next part of the episode Hori has taken one of his actor’s place as the antagonist against Kashima’s prince, and Nozaki and Chiyo have come along to watch. With Hori and Kashima what’s going to happen is pretty predictable from the get go with her obsession and idolisation of Hori, and his inability to hold back when it comes to kicking her ass when it irritates him. Which is pretty much always. It’s really funny to see this dynamic make its way onto the stage as well, during their fight scene, where Hori is both in awe at Kashima’s acting but can’t help the fact that he wants to “grab her foot and fling her into the next year” for existing. Ohhh, Hori, there’s so much denial going on with you there.
Nozaki makes the rest of the scene doubly hilarious when Hori asks Nozaki to stand in for Hori instead, since he wrote the script himself and should have a firm grasp of the characters. ‘Should’ being the operative word. Nozaki’s acting ends up…laughable for lack of a better word. Not only is he incredibly stiff and monotonous, but he ends up making up new lines and scenarios, as writers are wont to do. He was hilariously terrible at acting, for someone who spends their spare time writing dramatic shoujo. The most ridiculous part was where he argues that his acting’s bad because he’s still in his uniform, and so what outfit do they put him in? A giant bear. Who does judo. I don’t even know anymore but considering the amount of giggles I had I’m not really complaining at this point.
The icing on the cake was Mikorin’s lovely addition to the episode as they get him to stand in instead. The resident shy boy, he’s initially hesitant to showcase himself like that but Chiyo has proven herself a sweetly cunning little thing, and immediately sets on boosting Mikorin’s moral by showering him with compliments and praise. The fact that Nozaki and Kashima are quick to jump on the bandwagon only proves Chiyo’s resourcefulness and quick thinking. She’s also incredibly adorable while she does it and I just love her more and more each episode!
In the end, the play’s a success and Hori has his eyes set on Mikorin to join in more productions. The only problem is that Nozaki informs Hori that as Mikorin only had a single day to get to know him, he’s going to have to start from scratch until he builds up trust. Who knew the delightful Mikorin had the personality of a wary housecat? But seriously, that shot at the end, where Mikorin hides behind a curtain, wary of Hori, while Nozaki explains the situation to an astounded Hori had me in stitches.
Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun can do no wrong in my books and everything just kept getting better week after week!