Well here we are! Right at the tipping point. Little Busters Refrain has been skillfully setting up and building to the moment where everything is revealed. Things really reach the boiling point this episode, as we see one last bit of setup before everything can be revealed.
The reveal of the secret of the world is right upon us, and this episode had the tough job of getting us to the point where it’d be revealed. I’m not sure if I’d call it a surefire success though, or even emotional in the same vein as the last two episodes. Kurugaya’s arc was pretty intense, and it was able to incite some serious emotions without even revealing why Kurugaya was sacrificing herself.
Speaking of Kurugaya, it was creepy how she was absent from this episode, and how her very existence was ignored. It only served to amp up the idea that something is very wrong in this world. Its almost like Kurugaya had to be removed so that the events of this episode could play out, or maybe I’m reading too much into that particular notion?
Whatever the case, Kurugaya was absent from this episode entirely, and the focus of this episode was squarely on Riki and Rin, with Kyosuke kind of acting behind the scenes. After some pushing from Kyosuke (or manipulating?) both Riki and Rin end up dating.
The way the whole thing happens is actually pretty interesting, as both Riki and Rin are confessed to by other people, which leads at least Riki to think about who he likes. Rin ends up being the one that he seems to have feelings for, and it was actually pretty interesting to see Riki finally actually give serious thought to liking someone.
The whole scene of Riki trying to deny or rationalize was pretty well done, and conveyed Riki’s actions and feelings as believable.
Rin on the other hand? I’m not sure I get it. Rin has always kind of been a bit of a 2 Dimensional character in this series, and I was hoping we’d get some character development for her. I’m sure it’s probably coming, but as far as this episode goes, it was really odd to see her and Riki get together.
To put it bluntly, the two have no chemistry, and the whole thing felt really weird and underdeveloped. Riki and Rin kind of seemed to just settled into a relationship because of external forces that were pushing them to it. The whole thing kicked off with the whole confessions thing, and then of course, Kyosuke also had a big hand in playing matchmaker this episode.
Riki’s feelings for Rin kind of make sense, but it was almost like a weird coming of age story for him. It was like he had been a child until this point, and had suddenly been awoken to the idea of love and dating. It was a jarring conclusion, and while I see how well Rin and Riki get along as friends, I just couldn’t see a romantic connection for them. Maybe it was because of how child-like Rin is? Or maybe because Rin hasn’t really shown any romantic interest in Riki that’s been evident, even subtly, till now.
Even the whole confession was put forward in a very matter of fact way: “You and Me should go out”. There were no feelings of love, no confessions from either side, and just plain old confusion and apprehension. I guess its common place when close friends get together, that things are weird, but the thing really was dialed up to eleven here. The problem is, that even if I try to hold it against the series, I’m not sure if I should. At this point, nothing really can be held to water, as literally anything can be reconnected or removed from continuity.
The rest of the episode pretty much focused on everyone kind of being told about the whole deal, and being quite accepting about it. Nothing really odd happened, except maybe more hints from Kyosuke that something is going to happen to him soon.On a lighter note… Riki, yes you got a girlfriend, but damn, that face sends shivers down my spine:
Of course, what was truly kind of surprising at the end, was that everyone in that room, everyone of the Little Busters! was apparently in on whatever the secret to the world is and whatever Kyosuke is putting into motion.
It was eerie and extremely creepy to see them all kind of get together and walk into the light, leaving Kyosuke alone in the darkness, with a pretty scary expression on his face.
The episode ended with on an intense note. Both Riki and Rin received the final task from whoever had been sending them these missions via cat. Kyosuke? More than likely.
It’s also possible that nearly everyone worked together to get each of those missions revealed. Either way, the episode ended on a massive cliffhanger, as we literally get the closing at the point right before Rin and Riki go to their Homeroom and get the final task.
In many ways, this episode was a necessary one that served to setup the idea of Rin and Riki together, and whatever they’re about to face. While I myself have been asking the series to just “get on with it” already, I definitely a rushed element in the whole Rin and Riki coupling aspect. I just couldn’t buy into this pairing, and that’s definitely a problem coming from a hopeless romantic like me.
Maybe it was intentional? Because the creepy and weirdness vibes were all over the place as well in this episode. Either way, one more episode, and then we get the good stuff I’m assuming. Next week can’t get here sooner!
The final task eh? Its almost here! The big reveal!
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