Thursday, 6 February 2014

Silver Spoon Season 2 - Episode 5

The culture festival is just two weeks away, and if you want something doing there's only one safe pair of hands to turn to - no prizes for guessing who those hands belong to...

As a result, Hachiken finds himself becoming the "go-to" man for his class' culture festival preparations, involving himself in everything from the scheduling through to the finances without complaint.  As if this wasn't plenty to chew on in its own right, he also has grand plans for the equestrian club, organising a competitive event to show off the group and their abilities while also joining forces with Mikage to create a Ban'ei racing track and organising everything surrounding that event.

To facilitate all of this, Hachiken has to delegate some of these tasks to friends, in turn piling even more work upon himself to return those favours.  It's enough to break anybody, and we watch Hachiken slowly work himself into the ground, with his tiredness only punctuated by the joys of success.  Surely no success is sweeter than asking Mikage to hang out with him and do something fun with just the two of them once the festival is over, even if it does take her an ungodly amount of time to figure out what that actually means.  It's a realisation that threatens to destabilise the pair's excellent relationship, but it's a threat that perhaps pales into insignificance once the real effects of Hachiken's exhaustion kick in as the festival starts.

Culture festivals in anime are ten a penny (and you don't really need me to tell you that), but Silver Spoon's usual blend of strong characters and occasional moments of hilarity carry off this episode with aplomb - Hachiken continues to be a lovable lead character, and experiencing everything effectively through his eyes adds a lot to how we regard the rest of the cast.  Its closing moment might be the most predictable cliff-hanger of the year, but it doesn't detract from another simple yet effective and hugely entertaining episode.

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