Short Synopsis: Rui, Rin and Midori rush to save Ran and Reika.
Highlights: Big animation budget, woo!
Overall Enjoyment Value:8,5/10
This episode made a large impression on me. Not because of how this story ended (fairly standard “please stop your actions!”-bit) or the characters (they have been better in this show), but instead the animation. And mind you, I watched this episode from HorribleRaws. It’s apparent that this episode received a much larger budget than your average Telepath Shoujo Ran episode, but the interesting thing is that this wasn’t spent on gorgeous backgrounds or flashy CG, but instead the character-movement looked much better than usual.
The result was awesome. The characters gained a lot of expressivity in their gestures, both facial and with their bodies. It’s this animation that saved the finale of this series from delving into a cheese-fest, when the obsessed old guy needed to be convinced that his ways were wrong. The characters were exceptionally genuine in this episode, which really worked.
Now that I think about it, I very often don’t pay attention to these kinds of things. I think it’s because there are just too many series who use still frames and minimal animation, and with the series that do put some extra effort into the expressive motion of their characters, I often take this for granted. This is the first time where it struck me so much, probably because the quality was so much better than what we’re used to from this series. I think I’m going to pay much more attention to this in the future because of this.
In any case, about the rest of the episode: the story was clichéd, but it was told well. This entire arc was about Shimotsuki, who at his age still hadn’t learned to forget the past. He was both bullied because of his powers, his daughter probably suffered the same, and after that he even loved her. I liked the climax, where her spirit got the chance to possess Reika to finally settle things with her father. This series has already shown that it believes in ghosts, so it’s quite probable that her ghost had been haunting around her father’s shrine for years now, because she couldn’t stand seeing her father suffer so much.