It’s time for a festival in Takehara called the “Road of Aspiration,” where the town lights up tons of beautiful bamboo stalks. Fu is really looking forward this festival since it’ll be the first one since she moved back. They then go to Hoboro’s to eat, and find Dougo, their teacher, working there, who pulls them aside and asks for their help in confessing to Hoboro. It then begins to rain, threatening the festival, but lets up just in time. The girls then are able to enjoy the festival, while Dougo’s confession plan ends up going bust.
This was a good episode, though I was kind of caught off guard by the introduction of new characters who I’m not sure got a proper introduction because they were almost treated as if we had seen them before.
First was Riho Shihomi, the photographer that Fu had sent pictures to in the first episode, and from who she received a train ticket with no destination as a charm from. Fu seemed familiar with her, so apparently she has met her before between the start of the series and this episode, or has otherwise kept in close contact.
Next was Shouko Hirono, one of Kaoru’s old friends, who had apparently moved away before even Fu had. I’m not even really sure what her purpose was, other than to maybe show that Fu has gotten over her father’s death by having Shouko ask about him, not knowing that he’s died. Otherwise, her character seems to be relatively unexplored as well.
Also, we had lots of talk about the festival and how it’s important to Fu, but I’m not sure we got a clear picture of why it’s important to Fu. Maybe I just missed it, and maybe it’s something that one is supposed to just kind of “know,” but I felt it was kind of missing.
Don’t get me wrong, I still thought this was an OK episode, but I think it might be the weakest one so far for the reasons above. It just kinda felt things were happening without giving a proper explanation of why or who these people were.