Home – The One and Only
Healthy and respectful rivalry is really important
This is something of a breather episode and it’s both hilarious and pathetic.
We start where we left off last time with the Yagami brothers. Tomoe tries to reach out to Riku on both stride and their siblinghood, only to be shot down hard by Riku. This auspicious start pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the episode.
Brotherly bonding fail
Back at Honan, the boys and Nana are practicing but Riku and Takeru just cannot connect. Neither of them are performing as well as they can and are quick to blame each other. Riku is still obviously hung up over his brother and Takeru’s perfectionism is not helping matters. Sharp words are thrown and while Takeru claims that he’s looking straight at Riku, the latter feels that he’s being patronized.
Basically, it’s a hot mess.
As I said, this reunion’s colder than a dead fish
Nana is not doing much better thanks to the encounter with her father. We see that he once again asked her to transfer to Kakyoin, especially if she is serious about stride. Dick move, dad. Both father and child seem to share an obsession with the ideal stride but I don’t think that’s something they’ll be bonding about over dinner.
Meanwhile, Ayumu suggests in typical flamboyant fashion that they should solve the team issues through the power of water and skimpy swimwear. Yes, people, it’s that episode.
At least these two are having fun
Since the sea is too far away, they go to a water theme park. Ayumu and Hozumi attempt to demonstrate the merits of teamwork to Riku and Takeru but they’re wholly blind to it. Heath and Kyosuke attempt to use their rivalry to motivate the freshmen but that too is useless. They even try to use beach volleyball to make them cooperate with each other but both boys are skilled enough to win on their own so that doesn’t work out either.
The biggest mystery is why Ayumu and Hozumi are all covered up
In the end, it’s Nana who saves the day with a humongous rainbow snow-cone challenge that Riku and Takeru work together to win at the cost of brain freeze and stomach pain.
The things you do for sport.
It seems to work since they connect well in the next practice session. Nana even calls her father to reject his offer which he accepts with grace. He’s still a jerk though.
Not much to say here; it was a fairly straightforward episode.
I’ll mock it on principle due to the ‘beach/pool episode’ nature but it wasn’t just pure fanservice if you’re willing to look past the fact that it’s a little odd to use a water park as the place to build teamwork. Maybe Ayumu just wanted to play in the water. Can’t blame him.
On the Riku front, nothing has been solved. His brother issues still rage strong. I get the sense that Tomoe doesn’t really know how to talk to people so what are the chances that a good dose of talking might help? Low. Let’s hope they share their feelings through stride or something. Riku’s relationship with Takeru seems to be in a similar state. Sure, they’ve temporarily put their problems away but they’ve yet to really fix anything.
Seriously, boys, get your shit together. Or try.
Nana staying at Honan is hardly unexpected but I still like how she stood firm against Joe.
One of Kyosuke’s lines from earlier in the episode about how both Riku and Takeru are running after someone in front of them makes me curious. It’s clear that for Riku, it’s Tomoe. But who’s Takeru’s little obsession? Perhaps we’ll see soon.
Before I go, behold the monster rainbow snow cone! Our hero!