Posted on 27 June 2011 with categories: Hana-Saku Iroha



This was a wonderful conclusion to the past arc. Instead of using the midway climax as the most dramatic of the episodes so far, it was actually really warm-hearted and entirely focused on character development. Ohana’s mother’s visit was very down to earth and it showed something new about pretty much the entire family. Ohana’s mother’s advice and presence really brought change to this series.

I especially loved that the characters weren’t afraid to use liquor in this. That always turns out to be a great way to flesh out characters. It’s a bit weird for Ohana to get drunk on soda, but the way it finally made her lay out her feelings was really worth it. It also was quite unexpected that Ohana’s grandmother suddenly started drinking. Through this episode you could really see that Ohana, her mother and her grandmother are related: they’re all big workers, even though their personalities are completely different. The only oddball here is Ohana’s uncle: this episode really established him as a third wheel, and I suspect that the rest of this series is going to make use of that.

Also, since next week will be a beach episode, it’s clear now what format this show is going to follow. Setting aside the fact that beach episodes are bloody overused, this show will follow about the same format as Tiger & Bunny: the first half has random episodes with a long climax, the second half also has random episodes followed by a bit of a longer climax.

That’s not a bad thing by the way. When an episodic series is done well, it’s the second half where its episodes really start to shine because it’s there where the characters really start to show themselves off, and it’s here where the creators can really play with their development.It’s been a while since we’ve had series like this, so I’m quite interested to find out whether Hana-Saku Iroha and Tiger & Bunny can pull them off again. It’s a format that I really like because it can lead to a lot of variety. Whether or not we’ll already see this with the beach episode though… I’m not sure…
Rating: ** (Excellent)

5 Responses

  1. synkronized says:

    I feel the same way about both series. Both have done an excellent job establishing their cast and even giving ideas about where the main story will lead.

    I do love how Ohana’s mother has been given more exposure. It’s nice to see the suspicions that Okami pushed her away just as much as she rebelled be affirmed.

    And a definite yes on the uncle. You can see how having women play the commanding role in his life has shaped him. And also how he now feels wounded and left behind because of it, it makes one curious as to how that’ll develop.

  2. Censoerd 1 says:

    It was pretty interesting to see the dynamic between Ohana, Ookami, and Ohana’s mother, as we had never seen all three of them interact together. I’m still curious as to if Ko is completely out of the picture, or if Ohana will finally fest it up and lay out her feelings to him. Although, it never really seemed to me as if Ko had decided to break up with her, and I kind of see it as Ohana overreacting…Then comes Ohana’s grandmother’s dream about Ohana and her mother taking over the inn; that could also lead to an nice development for the second half of the series.

  3. Joojoobees says:

    This episode wrapped things up so nicely that I think it is kind of a shame that the show has another 13 episodes.

    I didn’t like the deformation of Ohana’s face when she got “drunk”. The series has mostly stuck to a very realistic style, and that didn’t fit, IMO.

  4. Kyubey says:

    “It’s a bit weird for Ohana to get drunk on soda,”

    They foreshadowed it well with her conversation about mixing soda and tea with Ko. I agree with Joojoobees, they needed to draw drunk Ohana better. It was distracting.

  5. ojisan says:

    Forgive me for being crass, but I’m looking forward to the beach episode. Now that I’ve nearly forgiven them for episode 3, I think I’m ready for some mild ‘character-driven’ fanservice

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  • Raggers
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 06:15 PM)
    As for Guardian Enzo, I find his and my tastes are very similar. And I like how he gives chances to shows that many would turn their nose up at, and appreciates what they do well. I respect that.
  • Raggers
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 06:04 PM)
    @Aries: I don’t think that’s the issue. The problem is that intellectually it has leaps in logic, and the whole thing just seems way to superficial at this point. It feels like nothing more than a roundabout way of getting a petty revenge on something, and even that’s been derailed by Five (who is more a caricature than a character, and doesn’t fit for that reason).
  • Aries
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 05:58 PM)
    Raggers, I just think it hasn’t revealed a whole lot in the amount of episodes aired. Isn’t this series like one cour anyways?
  • Friend
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 05:57 PM)
    For reviews, I usually watch Chibi Reviews because he is really proactive.
  • Aries
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 05:57 PM)
    (i am aware that randomc has multiple writers lol)
  • Aries
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 05:56 PM)
    I’ve always lurked lostinanime and randomc but i’ve never connected with the writing style that much and guardian enzo loses credibility for me with some of the shows he gives his time of day to.
  • ninjarealist
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 05:32 PM)
    @Aries SSY is a GOAT-tier anime IMO. Shows like that don’t always come around that often.
  • ninjarealist
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 05:31 PM)
    RandomC has some pretty good writers. I like Zephyr and Guardian Enzo a lot.
  • Raggers
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 04:59 PM)
    @Aries: you’re not the only one. It just fails to click on either an emotional or intellectual level.
    I’m following lostinanime, which is very much like what psgels’ blog used to be (long, episodic posts) and RandomC.
  • Aries
    (Saturday, Aug 23. 2014 04:40 PM)
    i’m only reading moesucks myself but….it’s a bit pretentious sometimes

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