Monday, 10 March 2014

Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! REN - Episode 9

At the behest of Kumin's aunt, it's time to head off for some fun (and work) in the sun to offer her a hand in her beach-side restaurant due to said aunt's husband throwing his back out - is the seaside all set to be the location for one of Rikka's greatest battles?

Yuuta is oblivious to any such implications as the regular group arrives and sets out working hard at getting the cafe up and running, from Yuuta's little sister acting as chef for the day with some success while Nibutani proves adept at bringing in the customers - customers which include's Rikka's sister Toka, who herself has a surprising addition in tow which offers up an entirely new threat to Rikka herself.

For her part, Rikka is behaving rather unusually, seemingly lacking in some of her usual energy and even going so far as forgetting to put on her trademark eyepatch.  It's almost as if Rikka has grown somewhat bored of her delusional world - a state of affairs which Shichimiya is quick to pick up on, suggesting that perhaps this is the time when she needs to choose between leaving her lifestyle behind to devote herself to Yuuta or throwing herself entirely into the world of her alter-ego.  Satone expects a response by the following morning, and Rikka's take on the situation is a decisive one - this is no "either/or" scenario, and she seems absolutely confident that she can (quite literally) enjoy the best of both worlds.  It's an impressive rebuttal, but has it opened up a whole new can of worms in terms of Shichimiya's own feelings for Yuuta?

If nothing else, this week's Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions at least went some way towards transcending its place as "yet another beach episode" even if it didn't quite fulfill all of its promise.   Especially given some of Yuuta's comments about her this week, I was really interested in the idea of Rikka losing interest in her own delusions, and it seemed as if this could have been the kind of powerful story that would have made for a perfect focus for the rest of the series; instead the whole thing is shrugged off within minutes as Rikka realises (quite reasonably, in fairness) that she can have both, in favour of what looks set to be some kind of love triangle to finish the series.  It's hardly original, but I suppose at least this show continues to exude a certain amount of fun as it goes about its business, and this week also offered one of the best delusional actions scenes the series has produced yet.

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