The Magic Photography Arts club celebrates two days of the school Cultural Festival together before Hitomi needs to head back to her own time. During this time, the club tries to push Aoi and Hitomi together so their love can bloom, even for a short while.
This episode feels like a return to form for the show overall, but a strange step backwards based on events from Episode 10. We’re back to fluffy slice of life goodness with a touch of romance on the fringe, so that’s great! However, at the end of Ep. 10 Hitomi and Aoi had all but uttered “I love you” to one another. They had the epic music, the double run scene, and the dramatic hug to seal the deal. Episode 11 opens with both of them sitting on a park bench just…saying quiet phrases to one another that dance around their feelings. I think ultimately this is about as declarative as it’s gonna get for now, as Hitomi reveals she wish she could stay and Aoi reveals he’s happy she was a mage and stepped into this life. Fine Japan…I’ll take this for now but I’m gonna want a real confession at the end, ya hear?
Adding to the backwards step is the fact that the school festival is happening and all parties seem cool with Hitomi sticking around for it. Weren’t we all panicking last episode? While I’m not as perturbed as Scott about the technobabble and magic craziness from last episode, I too find it odd that we went into such a flurry about Hitomi being sucked into a time pocket only to now suddenly have DECIDED on a time frame to send her back. If you guys can’t predict when she’ll disappear, shouldn’t you send her back ASAP?
The cultural festival is a series of short shots and montages. The club members are as cute as ever and we get to see little snippets of their growth as characters coming to fruition (Aoi shows off his art in the illusion event and gets praise for it, Asagi sells some bunny postcards). I’m a little disappointed we don’t get to see any one group of people enjoying themselves in the magical painting illusion event that the club puts on, but I guess that’s not where the money is at. Ultimately I am here for Hitomi’s character growth so girlfriend better confess a little somthin’ somethin’. Let’s check in.
Wait..first off, let me just express my other disappointing point..
Why can’t I watch the ballet club’s event?!?!
*Sigh* Okay well, back to the lovebirds.
Aoi and Hitomi spend this episode in a weird malaise of “should we/shouldn’t we” which does feel painful. While you sit there winding your proverbial towel into oblivion in frustration, the idea that neither wants to be the first one to say their feelings out loud carries a lot of weight. Regardless of what they both want, Hitomi needs to go back to her own time and the time to do that is rapidly approaching. Even if both of them confess, all that leads to is heartache on two sides.
At the end of this episode there’s a beautiful sequence with fireworks that ties the whole story back to Episode 1. It makes the magic panic nonsense from Ep.10 worth sitting through just to get to Hitomi experiencing such intense happiness. With one episode left I am concerned about Hitomi’s ability to see colors long term. My girl is headed for a heart break here and that sure doesn’t bode well for color vision…
We’re coming to a close on this show as Hitomi is about to head back to her own time. Was her time here ultimately worth it? Will she be able to see color someday? Will she confess to Aoi?! You can do it girlfriend! GANBARE FIGHTO!! Since this is my last episode, I’ll conclude with the fact that I have greatly enjoyed my journey throgh this show. Each episode involved relaxation, tea, and me ultimately feeling calmer when the episode was over. Here’s to hoping for the best as we end this show.