Thursday, 25 August 2011

Usagi Drop - Episode 8

It's a hot summer's day as we hit episode eight of Usagi Drop, a state of affairs which seems to be water off Rin's back, which is more than can be said for some of the show's grown-ups who really don't seem to take so well to such high temperatures.

Nevertheless, the real news to come from this episode is that we finally get a little more time to watch the behaviour of Rin's real mother Masako, starting out with a visit to her studio as she struggles with deadlines and the possibility of more projects being piled upon her in her work as a manga artist.  It's actually difficult to say how well she's coping with this pressure given her detached, nonchalant attitude to most things, but given her over-reaction to her assistant/boyfriend fussing over her and her state of intense tiredness it's probably fair to say that she isn't doing too great.

More importantly, a visit to the grave of Rin's father by Rin and Daikichi gives the latter a shock when he finds that it's been freshly decorated with a flower in an ink bottle and with the tips of drawing pens scattered around - a sure sign that Masako has just visited.  Leaving Rin to tend to the grave, Daikichi manages to track down Masako, offering her a chance to see her daughter (albeit from afar) as the growing girl that she is; indeed, this day also happens to be her birthday.  Masako accepts this invitation, commenting on her daughter's similarity to her father in her usual, slightly ambiguous fashion.

It's really Masako's behaviour that dominates this episode (although of course the dynamic between Rin and Daikichi is as wonderful as ever), and I have to confess that I find her fascinating.  She's such a bundle of contradictions, barely concealed self-loathing and confusing, enigmatic statements that she's the kind of girl you can't help but want to understand and get a handle on even if it means getting your fingers burned in the process.  Well, maybe that's just me, but nonetheless she's an intriguing addition to an already brilliant series, and I hope her character continues to be developed further to add another feather to the plumage that already exists upon the show's proverbial cap.

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