As she rides on the roof of the bus Mizuno sees a crow fly by and hears her sister’s words about how she would protect her, after this she climbed up a tree and lost her shoes when the bus drove off.
“Shining Star” by 9nine, download.
Luckily though she was able to bump into Takuto and get a ride home on his back, so when he brings her back they all go up stairs where Takuto is awkward about what he sees and both Mizuno and Marino’s hopes go up when they find out that he doesn’t have a girlfriend. When Mizuno goes for a haircut she bumps into Wako and the hairdresser notices that she’s in love, with them all suggesting that she go with gangan. During the drama club’s next meeting Sarina announces that there will be a kiss scene, also shooting down Wako’s fantasy, and since it will be opposite to Takuto, Mizuno volunteers for the role.
The time has also come for the Ayingott to be restored in order for it’s first phase ability to find maidens to be used, something that Marino looks forward to and inside Banishing Age’s lounge, Head makes his return to the True Crux and announces that it will be their turn to shine soon. Sarina decides that the kiss scene will be played by Mizuno and Takuto, quickly sending her hopes up even higher and when she tells her sister about it, her own hopes come crashing down. From above Keito looks on at how close they are, while at the restaurant Wako is putting too much sugar into her tea about it, and once again Sugata has met Head. Who this time tells him how he’d like to paint his portrait.
Mizuno and Marino eat ice cream again, this time mango and even after seeing Mizuno drawing herself kissing Takuto, Marino is still determined to protect her at all costs as she goes the reparation process. However differing from the process that Benio underwent, a black sludge extends outwards to swallow her and when it’s complete, the Ayingott breaks out of the Samekh’s grip and roars. In the shopping district a lady teases Takuto about his latest role as he’s flung into zero time, where Sugata and Wako have a bad feeling about the Ayingott.
Head meets up with the other representatives as Marino activates the Ayingott’s eye’s to search for the missing maidens, in doing so seeing Mizuno’s past in which she’s not present. At the same time the Ayingott goes berserk, taking a swing at the representatives and managing to slam Takuto and the Tauburn to the ground. Sugata unwilling to let it be restored again then hits it with the King’s Pillar and allows Takuto to cut through it to save the girl inside.
Time begins to flow once more with Wako refusing to answer when Ruri asks her if she’s been kissed, Takuto still being teased by the lady in the shopping district, and Sugata finds that Head had vanished during zero time. During the Glittering Crux’s next meeting, Marino announces that there is no West Maiden and looks suspiciously at Keito. After this she and Head talk together, with him practically confirming her as the East Maiden and her having seen through what Marino was up to, knowing that Mizuno is the West Maiden. Meanwhile the sisters take a bath together again with Marino promising to protect her and mentioning how she thinks Takuto is cool.
“Pride” by SCANDAL, download.
After the past few episodes of character based episodes it was great to see things go back towards the direction of the You Sisters, Mizuno and Marino, not only significantly moving their story forward but also providing a surprising twist to it. Let alone the events to the story as a whole seemed to move forward as well with Head’s return to Banishing Age, seeming to show that the interval of time from the end of the first arc when he had disappeared was over.
Once again the school life segements were pretty fun, this time revolving around the You Sisters and the Kiss Scene that Sarina had announced for her play. Where before Mizuno got the role it went about showing that both of them were interested in Takuto with their hopes rising, and after she had gotten the role it went about showing just how much Marino would sacrifice for her sister’s happiness. In how her hopes were crushed and she took on the Ayingott’s reparation process just for her, it was just pretty nice for what it was as it worked to reestablish how Marino would always protect her sister, along with the determination she had to do so.
What Marino saw when she used the Ayingott’s eyes was one of the things that seemed to stand out in this episode, working both as something pretty surprising and interesting at the same time. As while it was shown that Marino was absent during those moments in her past with Mizuno, there’s actually quite a few things that could explain it ranging from things like Marino not ‘existing’ and being a physical manifestation as Mizuno’s first phase, the Ayingott messing with her memories, simply that she remembered it differently, or something else entirely. So I’m looking forward to seeing what was behind it all, though I don’t have a good feeling about it at all, as any chance of a happy end for Mizuno and Marino seemed to go down after this.
The Ayingott was also somewhat interesting, in that not only was it described as an ‘evil’ Cybody but also in how compared to the other Cybodies shown so far it almost appeared to be sentient. In both the way it reacted when Marino went through the reparation process and the way it went berserk, as while we had seen something similar through Mami losing control of her first phase earlier. There was a completely different feeling to the way that the Ayingott went berserk, with the way it roared topping it off perfectly. Other than that the way it was shown as an evil Cybody was done nicely as well, where Sugata and Wako could see it at first glance from their Cybody memories and the black sludge like substance that not only in how it tried to suck Marino in, but also in how it was leaking out of it.
Other than that there was also the sense that the story as a whole was moving forward in how Head returned to Vanishing Age and how Keito was finally confirmed as the East Maiden. Since Head’s disappearance from the Glittering Crux had really come across as something done just to remove him from the story until it was time for him to do something in it, so his return seemed to signify that things were about to start moving forward soon. While something like Keito being the East Maiden was something that’s been foreshadowed now for quite some time, as early as the bus scene and even suggested in previous episode. So it was nice to see as well.
It was also nice to see a new opening and ending theme with this episode as well, and even though it seems like they’re going out of their way to force 9nine on us as much as possible (who personally I find kind of creepy). It’s still somewhat catchy and the animation provides quite a few hints as to where the series may be heading, like how Mizuno is shown alone and the battle between Takuto and what appears to be Head’s Cybody with the blue motif tying into the Fish Girl/Sakana-chan. Who’s appearance in the opening has also gotten my hopes up about her returning before the series reaches it’s end.
The ending on the other hand isn’t so bad either and it goes without saying that SCANDAL is better than 9nine, other than that it was also nice to hear them again after they had sung to fourth ending theme for Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. Just like the opening theme as well the animation also provides some interesting hints as to how Head and Keito are presented in opposition to Takuto and Sugata. Other than that it was nice to see the trio having fun hanging out together and the brofist was a nice addition.