5/05/2007

Shuffle! 10 - Sad harems in situations

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Double digits!

Admittedly, my Shuffle! viewing has tapered off a bit after finishing the brilliantly epic 21st episode . 'Tis the season of unnecessarily rigorous AP exams, and my anime watching and blogging has suffered as a result of it. But, on the good side of things I can finally catch up with the backlog of Shuffle! posts that I need to get done.

That said, less whine, more Sia.

This episode is, I believe, the temporary conclusion for her arc, but by no means is this fight winding down.


Rather Sia's obsession with Rin kicks into high gear as we get the typical confession-at-the-beach sequence which turns out to be a scarily planned-out dream by Sia, right up through the marriage at the chapel and the well-wishes of the rest of the harem.


We see that this is not just Sia's beliefs but also her fathers as he takes along Rimu to play a lot of dress-up as part of practice for Sia's wedding. Can't say if Rimu's having fun in this or not (like she smiles anyway?) but she does look damn cute with her hair down, loli or not.

The next few scenes consist of the rather surprising news that Rin and Sia are going to get hitched. Less surprisingly, this news is rather unfounded in any sort of truth but everyone takes it a bit too much to heart - perhaps because it involves their beloved Rin.


Kaede in particular has a lot of very lonely scenes in the house, something that will be elaborated on in the later episodes. With Rimu out with God-chan and Rin 'taken' now it's a very quiet and sad mood in the house, as Kaede is demoted to 'quiet person who sits around and cooks/cleans.'


The lighting and sound is excellently done in these scenes to portray the loneliness the characters feel. Even the usually cheerful, if not shy, Nerine gets in on the action. Sad girls in chair.

And this is just a drill, too. Wait until we get the real confession...

Anyway, somewhere in the mix of the contrast of happy God and sad girls we get ugly fanboys, who luckily beat the crap out of each other this time for reasons I have happily forgotten to screencap and take note of. Also on a good note, they WILL be phased out in the coming episodes.

That's a happy ending if any.


Asa also seems to be getting on a bit of Kaede herself as she is very subtly (not) surprised at Kareha going all shiny in a loud manner over Rin and Sia's 'engagement'. Her feelings for Rin, while not as apparent as the others are obviously there behind the genki girl exterior. She even calls the Fuyou household later in the episode, not to speak with Rin but to have a presumed strategy meeting with Kaede. The two have work to do to get their status to the forefront, but somehow you know all it takes it time.


Sia is surprisingly different than most harem girls in that she's rather keen to keep the peace within the group. While she's not aware of her father's blatantly obvious plans to pair her with Rin (even quicker than she imagined), she does mention many times that she doesn't intend to make this a fight to the death over him. Yay for a cooperative harem!


Anyway, flip over to the eyecatch and Rin coincidentally meets Nerine in a cafe, all dressed up. Gee, I wonder why that happened... Demon-chan is equally fervent to keep his blue-haired daughter in the race and so we get a bit of a juggling act as Rin tries to keep the harem happy.

However, this is most blatantly not Nerine's arc, as Rin's plot-exposition walk with her is cut out, leaving us in the dark.

Instead, we get more sad Kaede. She just takes it all this time and has nothing to dish out. Isn't it sad, Kaede? She in particular personifies the Shuffle! belief of keeling over and giving up once there's a hint that your loved one is going to end up with someone else (as shared by herself, Asa, and Nerine).

Back to Rin and Nerine in the park where they met for the second time. Sia is quickly losing ground, as much as she doesn't know it, as Rin spends almost as much time with Nerine in this episode as Sia.


And Nerine gets the real first strike achievement of first serious (yet obvious) confession. Holy crap. She's serious. Rin's quickly getting put into a situation where he's going to need to act quickly...


Sia finally beings to consider the harem ending, as she realizes that she's been acting rather selfish the last few days and not considering any of the other girls. Sia really doesn't want to lose her friends in Nerine and Kaede and thus decides to pursue Rin a little less competitively for now - although the Sia in the mirror seems to have different thoughts...

But let's come back to that later, as Sia's father comes in at the usual inappropriate time with his usual inappropriate wedding plans. Amusing violence follows, this time with a censorship card - that's how bad it is. XD

In good news, however, beating the crap out of God-chan really does seem to rejuvenate Sia.

The episode ends with Sia and Rin ending up playing Kanon in the classroom at night again (without the sword-age, of course), and Sia officially places herself on hold now, keeping the peace in the harem.

Things are looking rather good for Rin as the chaos in his life is balancing itself out a bit, but what comes next in Rimu's "arc" is going to be a ride...

-CCY

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