Naho’s determination to “save” Kakeru led her to spend this episode’s climactic scene prodding a clearly vulnerable friend about his feelings on his mother’s death. That wasn’t really a high point as far as Naho’s emotional sensitivity goes, but it was certainly a compelling scene in a dramatic sense. There were some wobbly bits and pieces in this episode, but also a nice scattering of excellent character bits. Orange is far from a perfect show, but it’s still a compelling character drama.
You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my notes below!
Orange is so committed to the truthfulness of its portrayal of adolescent drama that it almost harms its ability to succeed as a narrative drama – things are so slow, the kids are so insecure about everything, etc. This “who would you want to ask you out,” the most lukewarm way of approaching the topic
And Kakeru being afraid of making the wrong choices, and having things change in a bad way. It’s the sort of thing that’s absolutely a legitimate feeling at the time, but feels excruciatingly wrongheaded later on
“They should just start dating already”
Naho gets waylaid by the Rio crowd again
Kakeru stressing out about disappointing Suwa
Her friends help on both sides
“If you can just be your usual self, it should work out”
Kakeru talking about his nerves
The dramatic construction isn’t the most graceful, but the feelings are real. They didn’t really build to this moment in a wholly satisfying “dramatic sense”
She admits she’s been too scared to read ahead
And the contrast between that and the present-day narrative proves the letter was written after the narrative we’re currently seeing
“I want you to save Kakeru’s heart.” It’s a heavy burden!
Their friends keep pushing them together. Lol
Another one of the show’s regular montages
It is very obvious from our dramatic perspective that they are absolutely infatuated with each other, but from their own perspective, it’s a huge leap to actually declare their feelings
And she’s worried about what he said to his mother at the shrine. But she shouldn’t pry there – the letter’s actually giving her poor advice
Oh man, this conversation at the end. What a brutal, intimate, perfect sequence
Kakeru pushed off his mother the day of her death, and so he blamed himself
The framing here is wonderful. Really intimate, really quiet
“What does it mean to ‘save’ someone?”
“I don’t think one person can do this alone”
“Did you get one? A letter” DUN DUN DUN