Uo continues the story of her younger delinquency. Tohru hides her from rival gang members, and Uo starts to hang out at the Honda apartment from then on. Eventually they become the closer friends they are now. Back in the present, the delinquents following the group finally make their move, but Uo counters with maturity and understanding. The result is that she may just have a new admirer (or three).
It’s a cliché that friendship is the real magic, but it’s a cliché that still feels good to watch in action. Watching a younger Uo slowly warm to Tohru, come to respect and admire the ever-awesome Kyoko, and even agonize over whether she deserves a friend like Tohru (yes) makes for a solid episode. Even if the repeated visual imagery of Tohru’s muffins as a stand-in for her seemingly unconditional friendship was a bit cheesy, it still made me smile.
We also got some more of another strong point of the show – learning more about Kyoko through the people she interacted with. She offered advice and a place to feel safe for a young delinquent, reinforcing what seems to be the show’s central message: One truly selfless person can make a huge difference in the lives of many others.
In an episode packed with stuff, we even got another gem from Hana, as she stares down the three delinquents that have come to challenge Uo.
It’s hard to overstate how much I’m looking forward to learning about Hana.
As a final note, I really appreciated how the show wrapped up the unspoken darkness in Uo’s past. Throughout these two episodes, we’ve seen images of her home life – a busted apartment containing a deadbeat dad surrounded by empty liquor bottles.
In all her storytelling, it’s something she never directly spoke about, but it was always looming in the background. So it was really nice to get resolution for that part of her backstory in a brief scene that shows she’s taken her home back.