A Flower Blooms On Her Baton
Just as I was waiting for it, the highly anticipated Bunny Mountain cultural festival has arrived! But no cultural festival can go by with ease, and we soon see that Midori’s having a hard time trying to organise the baton club’s performance. Will things go according to plan, or will it be a failure?
I do like slice of life anime quite a bit, and of course, I always enjoy the typical cultural festival too. I even mentioned in one of my previous entries on Tamako Market how I felt a bit disappointed that there had not been much of an insight onto her school life, and that I wish there would be like a cultural festival. Thus I was not disappointed in todays episode, although there really wasn’t much to do in her school and we mainly spent more time outside of school, following Midori’s character again. I think I was kind of put off her after the episode in which she gave Mochizou a right telling off after he kept chasing after Tamako. I’m still tempted to go off on a rant about it again, but I won’t, and I shan’t, but I feel like they’re spending too long developing Midori’s character when I wish they’d develop Kanna’s character more! I mean, I know she’s supposed to seem more like the mysterious, quiet girl, but still… Either way, I watched this episode and I still enjoyed it in a way, but I’m still not too keen on Midori’s character if I’m honest.
We start off this episode at Tamako’s school, and all the school clubs are queueing up to get stage times for their performances at the school festival. The baton club last year unfortunately did not get a particularly good time slot: They got the latest time, meaning no one really went to go watch their performance. Midori, who is the club captain, has gone up to go draw the time for the club. Everyone remains optimistic and they know that with the cool, calm and confident Midori in charge, they should be fine… And they were! In fact, they got the “golden time” of 11:00 – 11:30, which is when they get the most spectators at the stage! The baton club have got a lot of work to be doing, and their performance really needs to leave a good impression on the public and wow the crowds! Can they do it?! Well, no. There’s always gotta be a hitch, or a problem. And that’s what makes Tamako Market.
The baton club begin preparing ideas. However, the thought processes of the club’s mixed personalities don’t combine well and there are too many ideas at once. Kanna thinks they should do a firefighter performance, whereas Tamako thinks they should dress up as mochi. Tamako’s life seems to be dedicated to mochi, but sadly not the Mochizou variety (what a horrible joke, I’m sorry!)… Things aren’t working out, so they all decide to split responsibilities amongst the group. Midori decides to take charge of planning the choreography for the routine and so she will naturally pick the song choice too. Kanna and Tamako decide they want to plan the outfits, of which probably isn’t a good idea. Whilst they are two “fashionable” girls, we could end up with firefighting mochi throwing batons around a stage here folks: Now wouldn’t that be a sight! Well, fortunately their kouhais decide they want to help join in the shopping for that, so hopefully they’ll keep a close eye on their senpais and make sure they don’t do anything stupid. Midori wants to come along too, so sadly, the idea of firefighting mochi may be out the window. Midori seems to be pretty determined to help out the most though, which seems like a pretty demanding task, but the girls seem fine with that. Midori has always come across as being a very confident and mature character, however, I soon learned that maybe even the strongest of people have their weak spots too, and we certainly see this later on with Midori later on in the episode.
The girls seem pretty confident that Midori will do a good job, however. But over at Midori’s house, it seems the choreographing for the routine isn’t working out. No matter how hard she tries, no idea will work, she only ends up getting embarrassed and ends up hiding away, getting in a flap and a panic. Not to worry though, the cultural festival is still a little way away, so you still have time Midori! Back at the Kitashirakawa household, Choi is helping with preparations of the cultural festival. Slave labour?! Gee, is there anything that Choi-chan can’t do, is the question? Anko is fascinated with how fast Choi can sew, and Choi simply says she finds it relaxing, and when she’s relaxed she can tell the fortunes a lot easier and more accurately. Choi’s a bit too hard on herself though, and says how she still has lots to learn. I think that Choi’s a bit of a tsundere, though, and I actually really like her character – she might be my second favourite in the whole show – but I felt really bad when she keeps being hard on herself. Choi’s a really amazing individual and is an extremely strong character, plus she’s fascinating in everyway, what with her fortune telling and all, and I just wish maybe she’d stop being so hard on herself and realise that she is actually good at many things: Just like Tamako and Anko said. But maybe Choi’s just a little too much of a perfectionist. Either way, something seems to be bugging her about Tamako: The mark on her neck. What seems to be the fuss all about?! Actually, my prediction was correct. I didn’t really think there could be much of any other option… And if I’m honest, I actually kind of hoped it wasn’t what I thought it was, unfortunately. However, as Choi just goes to ask Tamako, the phone rings! Annnnd it’s Midori. Much to her surprise, it’s been pretty productive over on Tamako’s end, however not so much on Midori’s side. ALTHOUGH, Midori being the strong character she is, she knows she’ll think of something, so she lies and says everything’s going fine. I don’t know why I’m letting Midori irritate me so much to be honest… The only think that she’s really been helpful for was the costume ideas, and actually, they did really turn out to be pretty cute.
But as we can see, Midori’s beginning to succumb to the stress and the pressure and everything’s pulling her down. She stresses about around town, squawking “idea” in the most disgusting voice/accent that I have EVER heard. Yes, I’m near certain that I don’t like Midori much at all. Everyone stops and stares and must think she’s a right looney. She even walks into her grandfather’s shop only to walk out again panicking and stressing out. Master from the record shop soon calms her down and plays a good record that maybe they could use for the baton routine. The girls are getting a bit worried now, even Kanna who is spying on Midori notices that she just isn’t being herself. It was really weird to see Midori like this, as usually she’s supposed to seem like the mature figure out of the group: Playful and immature Tamako and Kanna never do much and then there’s Midori always trying to set the example and be the good person out of the two, she almost comes across as being much like Mio from K-On! at times, and I actually thought she was quite like her in this episode. She’s really weak inside and really isn’t doing too well, and it seems at this rate the cultural festival for the baton club is going to end up being a disaster again!
Shiori notices this too. It feels like we’ve pushed shy Shiori out the way of Tamako Market for a bit, and it’s a shame because I quite liked her character and wish we saw a bit more of her: It’s like they developed her, said good job and bid farewell to her, just to maybe give the anime a bit more of a cute appeal. Shiori’s a good character and it’s a shame since I thought Tamako would have been a good friend and let her join in their friendship group and all. Nonetheless, it’s a repeat of what happened last time. Shiori seems pretty calm and happy now, and it’s nice seeing her settling in, but it’s also sad because we really see Midori’s weak side here. She stands in the toilets, talking to herself, telling herself to think up ideas, when Shiori walks in. It’s kind of sad because the girls are both alike in this way. They might seem very strong on the oustide, but actually, they’re really weak and vulnerable on the inside, and just don’t know how to deal with it, so it’s kinda nice they linked back to this and helped the characters relate to each other a bit I guess.
Choi and Tamako are working well away at the costumes for the baton club, and Kanna said she would join in but “it’s against her policy to hold anything lighter that’s a hammer”. Something about that girl’s a bit odd, but I love her for it. What about a baton then? Does she throw hammers instead of batons instead? But Shiori-san is here! And as soon as we hear her voice, Dela goes crazy and the hopeless romantic is swooning all over Shiori: How about we just leave the girl alone for a bit, Dela? Shiori seems pretty concerned about Midori too, and tells the girls what has happened. The only thing Dela seems pretty down over is the fact his beloved and beautiful Shiori actually uses the toilet too. Yes, Dela, Shiori uses the toilet… A-AND WHAT OF IT?!
The girls all decide to take a visit over to Midori, and Tamako takes over some mochi to cheer her up. Once they reach their house, Midori hides away all her ideas and makes it seems like she’s completely fine, even if she does have a fever (hence why she wasn’t in school that day), although the girls all know she isn’t really inside. Midori’s always trying to act like the big and bold character that sets the good example on the girls, when really, sometimes there are just days where you can’t cope with it all and you just let it all get to you. Shiori decides to tell Midori about the toilet incident though, as she knows she can’t hide it for long, although Midori can’t help but get all defensive over it, but Kanna notices all the scrap paper thrown away into the bin with all the choreography ideas on them. Midori can’t hide it any longer, no matter how much she tries to cover up the tears. Oh Midori, have you got a bit of anime in your eye? Tamako gives her a big hug, and the girls all reassure her that they can all think up a routine together. BUT, Dela seems to be the hero of the day here, NOT Tamako! Dela says that dancing is something that you just do, not something you think through and make up! It’s something that happens upon impulse, you do what you want and you be free and expressive! Although, with Dela’s dancing, we can really see he’s not exactly one to talk about being good at dancing, so maybe taking Dela’s approach is a bad idea.
So it seems they saved the day for the cultural festival in the end, thankfully. And the routine ended out well in the end! Everyone enjoyed it (even Mochizou for the film club got to record the whole routine, the pervert!) and it was a great success! I’m happy that it ended well in the end, and even old Dela-chan got to be a part of it in the end as well. All their friends unite together and everything ends happily once again.
Well, no, I’m not sure that things will end happily so much. Tamako is the prince’s bride that they have all been searching for!
I have… A lot of mixed feelings about this. Is the prince the boy that Choi likes? Will this affect Choi and Tamako’s friendship? What about Mochizou?! Whilst everything may always seem rosy in the Bunny Mountain shopping district, I have a bad feeling that the events that will unravel in the last 2 episodes will be hectic and very chaotic to say the least.