Short Synopsis: Mina runs into a certain somebody
Highlights: Some of the best art of the entire series can be found inside this episode.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10 (Excellent)
Whoa, those are some very interesting developments. I must say that I really like it that the creators aren’t just going to let Porfy and Mina meet up without a big finale. The idea is absolutely wonderful and despite the sacrifices that had to be made it will form the cream of the crop for the character-development of the two. But first a summary:
The episode starts the next day after the previous episode. Porfy wakes up and Rose is just done with her job, and taking a shower. After she’s done, Porfy tells her that he’s going to work and search for Mina for the rest of the day. He finds it a bit hard to imagine that she works during the night, and sleeps in the afternoon. He feeds the cat and then goes out to search for Mina. At the bread store of the previous episode, he tries to find out what exactly Paris looks like. Obviously, he’s pretty startled when he finds out how big the city really is.
Later in the restaurant, the waiter is having the time of his life abusing Porfy, criticizing every possible thing that he does wrong, like leaving the water on for too long, pouring too little beer into one glass, and when Porfy receives a tip from a guest who is also French, he immediately confiscates the tip. It’s his shop, so Porfy should be glad that he can at least get somewhere to work. That evening, Porfy finally has the time to write a letter to Porfy, about how he reached Paris. Rose then leaves for work again.
The next morning, we switch to Mina and Isabella, who’ve reached Paris. Interestingly, Carlos and Isabella’s father aren’t together, and the latter foreshadows a bit by reminding Mina to never forget her dream. In any case, Mina starts singing while Isabella is dealing with a customer, and that happens to attract the attention of a certain person who happened to be driving by: Tiffany Auber, the actress Mina admired so much. She sends her manager to try and talk to her, but Isabella has obviously never heard of such actresses. Even when Tiffany herself appears and asks Mina to sing the song she just sang again, she still refuses.
Tiffany isn’t the type to give up so easily, though. She tries again, but a bit more subtle: she asks Isabella to tell her fortune instead. Isabella does send Mina back to their hotel. Isabella still wants to know what Tiffany wants to do with Mina, and Tiffany starts to explain, although we don’t get to see that exact scene because something much more important is happening over at Mina’s side: Carlos is ticked off because Mina isn’t working for her food, and he starts scolding her and throws all sorts of insults at her. Mina finally insults him back, since she’s got her memories back and all. Hearing that, Carlos takes Mina to her room and starts abusing her in ways that can only be left to our imagination. Mina then grabs a potato knife and stabs Carlos and escapes. Isabella arrives at that point, and sees Mina running away crying. Carlos tries to seek sympathy with her, but she slaps him.
Isabella then tries to confort Mina by asking whether she’d like to perform in a movie. Isabella turns out to have been wrong, and understands that Tiffany is a famous actress. They decide to go see her, though Mina is very nervous, even though Isabella tries to talk some courage into her. Isabella then goes to talk with Tiffany’s manager about the details, while Mina waits at a different room full of awards and posters.
When Tiffany enters the room, she asks whether Mina has any experience in acting or singing, but this obviously isn’t the case. Tiffany doesn’t find it a problem, though. Isabella then leaves, as she’s got her own job to do, and she talks some last words of confidence to Mina, about letting flowers bloom. I think that Isabella was really happy that Mina is going to be able to grow up properly. A huge parallel to the time when that rich boy tried to take Mina away.
Tiffany then shows Mina some absolutely gorgeous shots of Paris, saying how she believes that Mina will definitely be able to break through. The episode ends with so many beautiful shots of the city that it becomes almost scary. Yeah, I think I went a bit overboard with the screenshots. ^^;
In any case, ever since Apollo’s death, this isn’t a series about realism any more. There was more than enough realism and nostalgia in the first quarter of the series, the majority of the series, the middle part, was a focused on travelling, and now the final ten episodes really are the place when the plot takes over into what promises to be a very powerful finale. The great thing about this also is that this is the WMT: you know that things are going to happen, but you never know when that’ll happen. After all, Les Miserables had an aftermath of about seven episodes, so who knows how many the creators of Porfy have scheduled?
In any case, about the whole events, of Apollo dying, Porfy running into Alecia, meeting Rose and Mina just getting picked up by Tiffany: there’s no way that that would happen in real life, but this isn’t about making sense anymore, every single one of these events was meant in order to bring out the best out of the characters. Much like Tokyo Godfathers in a way: it was an awesome movie, and every single one of its coincidences was perhaps a bit strange, but meant to bring out the best in the characters. Mostly, I dislike these sorts of things, but there can always be exceptions. ^^;
I doubted for a bit after Apollo’s death, but there really is no doubt possible at this point: Porfy and Mina will meet some day. Even if Porfy doesn’t somehow get the chance to ask Rose about Tiffany, eventually Posters will be put up and people will start to recognize Mina. If Porfy stays in Paris for long enough, he has to notice at one point, but it’s the most probable that Rose and Tiffany will reunite the two. Speaking of which, I’m getting pretty interested into exactly what kind of job Rose has. It’s probably some sort of showgirl or something similar.
And Carlos! I must say that I like what Mina did to him, to actually stab him with a knife. I also like the decision of showing the abuse behind a closed door. It can hardly be called budget-saving, with this episode featuring some of the best graphics in the entire series, and I feel that if they animated what actually happened in that room, it would have looked faker than what we got instead. But really, the guy has to be really pissed by now, especially after learning that Mina might just become famous. Here too: you just know that the guy’s going to explode, but the question is: when?
One final remark: the soundtrack. I was really impressed by the tune that started playing when Tiffany first appeared in front of Mina. The synthesizers are so un-typical of France and this series, but it’s such a haunting tune and fits the scene perfectly. Talk about saving the best for last!