Thursday, August 8, 2013

Anime Review: Chihayafuru: The Plum Blossoms Still Smell the Same(1.18)

                Chihayafuru: The Plum Blossoms Still Smell the Same(1.18)Review
In this episode the karuta club goes to there first tournament of the fall in which they are all trying to advance in rank in individual matches. This tournament is the first tournament in which Chihaya will be competing against players of all ages rather than just ones that are in high school so she's a bit nervous about that. Chihaya ends up playing against an older woman named Sakura who takes advantage of Chihaya's speed because it allows for many faults and she isn't very fast at the game but she does have good timing especially when it comes to three syllable cards.

Chihaya while playing her match against Sakura realizes that she can't relay on her speed in order to win and she remembers what Tsutomu told her about how many cards he was able to take from her and from where Chihaya figures that Sakura may be using a strategy similar to that one to play. Chihaya decides that it would be best for her to take a step back in order to try to pace herself a bit more and to not let her speed get the nest of her. Sakura mentions that she feels like Chihaya is playing only with the cards which makes Chihaya realize that she should be watching Sakura and learning how she plays karuta. In the end Chihaya looses her match by six cards against Sakura but she promises to learn from the game that those two play.

Chihaya starts to freak out quite a bit once she finds out that the class B final is Taichi against Nishida and the class D final is Kana against Tsutomu, Chihaya doesn't know who to watch or who she should cheer for. Chihaya ends up watching Kana and Tsutomu match's where she notices that Kana is actually better at playing karuta in kimono because it helps support her. It's noted that Kana knows how to where a kimono very well and that in one all of her movements are very graceful. Tsutomu uses his information he has gather from practicing with Kana to note which cards she has trouble with but he also notes that since Kana doesn't relay so much on the first syllable as most karuta but rather the history and meaning of the poem this is something that both seems to help and hurt her with it being a disadvantage with speed but keeps her from making faults. Chihaya decides to watch their match because the way they play karuta is much different from the way she plays it therefore she has much to learn from watching them play.

I really enjoyed this episode and I liked how this episode continued with Chihaya trying to find new ways in which to play karuta. Please tell me your thoughts on this episode.

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