After that really quite beautiful episode last week, the tenth instalment of Hatsukoi Limited returns to more traditional fare, with a focus on rivalries. Oh, and breasts. We can't go forgetting those, can we?
As this episode covers two different individuals and their troubles, so both stories are underpinned by the aforementioned cleavage. On one side of this episode we return to the world of Meguru, who is still having some issues relating to the size of her breasts. This is only made worse by the appearance of her younger rival "Q" - No, not from James Bond, it's the nickname for Kyuma, a girl who is determined to beat Meguru at something. Her choice of event for this momentous win is swimming, which only serves to further knock poor Meguru's confidence, leaving her to wonder what she has left in her life. After trying to live her life making the most of her ample bosom, she finally (and thanks in no small part to her crush Watase) finds her comfort zone, albeit in a slightly cheesy fashion.
The real interesting stuff however comes in the form of who else but Kei and Kusuda, with the latter seemingly set to be lured away by the top-heavy president of the drama club, who is looking for someone to play a kappa in a performance for the school's freshman, and what better man than "the kappa" himself Kusuda to play the role? Naturally, Kei Enomoto is none too happy at the thought of "her" kappa being snatched away, building up another rivalry while Kei swings predictably to extremes in her love/hate relationship with Kusuda, almost ruining everything completely before possibly saving the day by apologising while looking over-bearingly cute. Don't you just hate it when girls manage to do that, leaving you powerless to reject their apology?
Anyhow, while this episode was entirely too breast-centric for my liking (indeed, I'm sure I've never written the word "breast" so many times in three paragraphs in my like), and both sides of the story told were a little cliched (particularly compared to the fabulous previous episode which will live long in my memory), there were some moments to enjoy here, not least the comical attempts to lure and ensnare Kusuda using a trail of cucumber. Even at its most ridiculous (and yes, I still say they'd never last together although I know some may disagree), the Kei-Kusuda relationship is pure car crash anime viewing, as you're always guaranteed some drama as everything goes off the rails and ends in disaster, only to be reeled back at the last moment. Not a classic episode of this series then, but a passable effort from a show that can do much, much better than this when it really puts its mind to it.