Monday, 16 July 2012

YuruYuri ♪♪ - Episode 3

To mix things up a little from the norm, this week's YuruYuri shifts its focus slightly away from our main quartet of characters to instead spend a little more time with the frequently abrasive duo of Sakurako and Himawari.

Everything seems pretty normal (or normal by YuruYuri standards) as the episode begins, with this duo joining Akari and Chinatsu for lunch and trying to figure out some ways to pass the time, including speaking English (Squid Girl this episode ain't in this respect) and playing a game courtesy of a custom-made dice provided by Sakurako herself.

It's this dice which turns the topic of discussion to Valentine's Day, as the girls discuss who (if anyone) they're planning to give chocolate to.  Unsurprisingly, it's Chinatsu's plans for Yui which are the most impressive, but to fully achieve her plan of knitting a scarf as well as making chocolates she gets Himawari to tag along with her to teach her how to knit, choose the right yarn and so on.  There's no big deal here it seems, particularly as Sakurako herself co-opts Akari into helping her with homework, but something clearly isn't the same and the longer Himawari spends her time with Chinatsu the more despondent Sakurako becomes.  This all comes to a head on Valentine's Day itself, although as the amount of chocolate being passed around increases any sense of upset is only temporary.

Having ragged on YuruYuri quite a lot over the past couple of weeks I have to give it some kudos here - the switch in focus to a different pair of characters who rarely get a lot of time in the spotlight was very welcome, and the story surrounding them well-realised and actually quite sweet in a surprisingly genuine way despite Sakurako acting like a spoiled brat for quite a large portion of the episode.  Sure, it still isn't exactly hilarious anime comedy and this week's episode didn't manage to breach any greater level than light amusement on a few occasions, but simply something a little different and more considered than the norm was a welcome relief for this series, and something that I'd like to see a whole lot more of from this show.

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