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While the show has retained its primarily Marie focus, I have to say this was also a really good episode for Rise. I think her character has tended to get generalized as the flirty Narukami obsessed girl, but this episode is a good reminder that there is more to her than that and when it comes to things within her element she is rather reliable and able to pull everyone together.

Of course it was another solid episode for Marie. Perhaps a smaller one in comparison to what she’s been getting past, but still fun. Got a reminder that it’s not just about making memories while focusing on that goal. The best thing is just to get absorbed in what you are doing and just happen to make some memories along the way. The most interesting moment tying into that reaction when Adachi was around. I’m sure she had little idea of what to make of it. Kind of curious though to see where that goes in terms of the Adachi storyline.

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And of course this week was all about the band performance. A bit of a random development, but also a good chance for the group to work together for something that isn’t surrounded by murders. It was a pinch for Yosuke having to get saved or else the possibility of moving was realistic. That in itself would be a major problem since it would bring down the available members of the investigation team. Not like Youske could hang around telling his parents he has a murder to solve.

Kind of funny that they seem to be using the picture of Kanami shown in connection to the P4 dancing game that is coming out at some point. Not the biggest thing, but a nice little touch. The reasoning for why they had to do this was good enough for me. Yosuke needed to get his dad out of a pinch. The only one who could realistically assist in replacing the presence of an idol is another idol…or at least one on vacation. Standing in for Kanami probably wasn’t the most pleasant thing for Rise, but helping Yosuke out was just more important than that pride.

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Again I really think this was a good episode for Rise’s character. You can sometimes forget that she had the talent and work ethic to survive in the entertainment industry for all that time. It was a chance for her to not just be the girl trying to get Narukami’s attention. You could see the serious effort she put into preparing for this and also what performing actually does mean to her. I think all the negatives surrounding being an idol weighed her down so much that she forgot what she enjoyed about it.

Could say this episode is a good step for Rise’s development leading to how her social link turned out in the game. The solo practice on her own and her ability to calm everyone does just ties into how this really was her element. She also did a good job keeping Marie from going overboard. While preparing as much as possible does help, going so far that you can’t actually perform when the time comes isn’t smart. Hard work backfiring doesn’t help anyone and I’m sure someone in Rise’s position knows that as well. This may be Rise’s one chance to shine in this Golden anime, so glad she did.

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Of course other characters got some entertaining moments as well. Nice that Yu’s friends were actually remembered here. With so much focus on Marie it’d be easy to skim past all of the other social link characters to keep to that. But instead they brought the cross dressing back and it was helpful. It got Rise out of a jam and let her perform with everyone else.

The concert itself was fine. It wasn’t a visual spectacle, but it did have a nice sound to it. I think combining the singing at one point to Rise and Marie actually gave it a better sound. Since both characters VAs can sing fairly well I guess it was a good move. I wasn’t sure if Rise was actually going to sing since they could have just given Marie the whole song, but glad she got her moment as well.

And of course the infamous stage jump had mixed effect for the different characters. Teddy got the best result getting bounced around like that. Yu probably had the second best result since he at least managed to make a decent landing pose out of it. Yosuke and Kanji….not so well. Not a surprise really since if a bunch of people suddenly jump into the crowd, people will start looking to their own safety.

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Parts of the episode and the ending did hint that we’re probably going to give Adachi some focus at last. I thought they might push his social link a little bit, but I guess they felt like keeping the focus on Marie made more sense. At the very least they’ve got some good chances to really highlight Adachi’s new scenes from Golden. I’m definitely looking forward to that and the later half of this series. There has been good build up here and I’m feeling like they will be able to wrap it up just fine.
Score: B+

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An older member at 25, yet a new addition to Anime Evo. Recently graduating University and in the difficult point between school and a true career. Anime being a salvation and blogging a good way to put all those hours of writing essays to some use. Enjoys talking about series, yet not taking on so many that the quality dips. A Canadian who enjoys his anime and hearing what others think about the series he enjoys watching.

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