Assistants, parties, free televisions.... everything seems to be going swimmingly for our newly serialised duo of manga artists now that Bakuman's second season has taken us into the swing of things - of course, life would be boring if everything went that smoothly.
That said, for much of this episode things carry on as per what has become their new norm for Mashiro and Takagi- although there's a rather heavy atmosphere when they and their team of assistants are hard at work, everything is getting done in a timely fashion and with sufficient quality, while Miyoshi also makes an appearance to help out. With thoughts already turning to their fourth chapter, the only real question is how successful the opening instalments of the Shady Detective Trap manga will be - a question set to be answered next episode it seems.
The fly in this otherwise successful ointment however comes via Miho - while her career as a voice actress seems to have been coming along nicely, a request to take part in a swimsuit shoot for a photo book leaves her torn; doing the shoot will give a boost to her career, but is it really a path she wants to go down? This conundrum leaves Miho introverted, in turn worrying Moritaka - a state of affairs which eventually boils over to the point where manga creation takes second stage to Miho's well-being, in turn leaving Akito with no choice but to interfere himself to ensure that everything returns to normal with a minimum of disruption.
Although I've never been too keen on the romance angle of Bakuman, and particularly the way things play out between Moritaka and Miho (and I know I'm not the only one here), on this occasion the situation between the two of them actually worked very well - for once Miho's character came out as something over and above a generic love interest, and the way things panned out between herself and her would-be boyfriend felt genuine and valid while making for some well-realised drama. Thankfully the show's bread and butter wasn't forgotten in the midst of all this, leaving us with another manga creation-centric cliffhanger while the episode also gave us a little more insight into Ashirogi Muto's team of assistants. All in all then, another top notch episode that was very enjoyable indeed.