Sunday, 24 July 2011

Hanasaku Iroha - Episode 17

From the unbridled excitement of having a movie filmed at Kissuiso, and including its staff no less, the previous episode of Hanasaku Iroha ended with what seemed likely to be a rather ominous phone call to spoil the party.

Lo and behold, the phone call in question was indeed a bad omen, calling into question the legitimacy of the movie filming about to take place.  While the tip-off comes from none other than Ohana's mother, Satsuki finds that her own mother really isn't too interested in the information she provides, instead leaving Enishi to do things his own way no matter the cost.

Although the initial "warm-up" filming seems to be great fun, not least for Ohana and friends, come the day of actual filming nobody shows up and the so-called producer of the movie isn't contactable - it appears that the wool has indeed been pulled over Enishi and Takako's eyes.  Rather oddly given the finances involved, nobody else really seems to care too much, with Kissuiso continuing as usual while only the pair directly involved in signing the contract concerning themselves with what to do next.  Thus, the remainder of the episode focuses squarely on Enishi, his rather odd way of thinking, and effectively his suitability at taking over as Kissuiso's manager one day.

After an entertaining enough start to this story arc, things took a rather disjointed turn once the movie filming was exposed as nothing more than a fabrication - it almost felt as though this week's instalment couldn't decide whether it wanted to look at Enishi's feeling for Takako or his place in the family heritage.  Instead, the episode straddled both of those issues and didn't really resolve either satisfactorily, giving the whole venture a rather empty and insignificant climax that was lacking in all of the things that usually make Hanasaku Iroha enjoyable.  Still, with next week's instalment looking decidedly bizarre from its preview, it certainly looks as if the series isn't going to become dull any time soon, so for now let's just put this episode down as a clunky mis-step.

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