Monday, 21 December 2009

Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu - Purezza - Episode 12 (Completed)

With Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu - Purezza reaching its climax here, there's only one thing left for this series to provide.... A hot springs episode! Wait, what did you think I was going to say?

For some reason, I thought this series had already had a hot spring episode (they all tend to blend together in your head after a while), but apparently not, and so this instalment sees basically the whole cast of the series enjoying the opportunity for blatant fan service aplenty throughout its first half, complete with a botched confession to Yuuto by Shiina.

With that out of the way, the second half takes a more serious turn (well, as serious as this show can get), with Haruka somehow lost outside in a blizzard. Of course, this calls for action, and so the Nogizaka maid team form a search party to find her, a party which Yuuto tags along with to do his bit to help (albeit dressed as a bear - I did say it was as serious as this show can get, didn't I?). Needless to say, it's Yuuto who eventually finds Haruka, and after getting caught in a bit of a landslide they find a nearby empty shack to get comfortable and make themselves safe in. Really, the rest writes itself from here, as the pair look to keep one another warm, and one thing leads to another only to be interrupted at the last second, as per pretty numerous other episodes of this series. To be fair, at least the end credits give us our "happily ever after" Yuuto and Haruka moment, and not a moment too soon.

Much like its first season, I found myself having a bit of a love/hate relationship with Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu - Purezza. At times I found episodes both amusing and/or enjoyable, particularly when they focused on the frankly quite adorable dynamic between Haruka and Yuuto, but at others I grew beyond frustrated with the overuse of fan service and the constant attempts to draw Yuuto into some kind of love triangle or harem situation or other. It's almost as if this series (nay, this franchise) never really figured out what worked best - If only it had got to grips with that earlier, it could have been all the more enjoyable for it. Still, as entertaining fluff Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu never really put a foot entirely wrong, and there have certainly been worse ways to spend your anime watching time this season.


Anonymous said...

Actually, episode 1 of Purezza was a hot springs episode, so you definitely weren't mistaken about there having been one previously. The fact that the show began and ended with this kind of episode really speaks volumes about the tone of the second season as a whole though, and probably not in a good way...

Hanners said...

Ahh yes, so it was! I thought I had a vague recollection of such an episode, but I must have expunged it from my mind. ;)