May 24th, 2014.
The Grand Curtain Call!
Series finale! Yeah, manga is still ongoing, so we aren’t here to hope for an “ending”, but for a good ending point. I think a play is a good place for it.
Last episode ended with our couple not being a “couple”, but accepting they feel for the other, and that the other feels for them, even if they don’t admit it.
So this episode is going to have Raku and Chitoge “ad-libbing” to one another in a romantic play? We all know they’re going to say what they truly feel, right? Right.
Thoughts and Notes::
1) Facing our Feelings:
1) “What should I name the feeling I’m having right now?” – That’s not a trivial question at all. None of us can truly share our thoughts with one another, so if someone describes love to us, we then look when what we feel more or less matches it, and call it love ourselves. If what we feel would be defined by another as “love” but we don’t think of it as such, then we’re not in love with someone. Giving names to our feelings, saying how we feel is a performative speech action – we feel in a certain manner because we say so – we say things, then we take them to be true, rather than discover what is within us and then give it a name, quite often.
2) Sparkly Chitoge is actually somewhat happy at being called a gorilla, “Just like old times”, meaning they got back to where they can insult one another as a sign of closeness, rather than as something to wound.
2) Subplots Galore!
1) And Shu, Shu is ever one to keep adding fuel to the fire. Remember how I said the play will force them by reflecting how they feel, and since it’s ad-libbed, they’ll have to speak from the heart? Well, Tsugumi is outed as being in love with Raku now!
I think Ruri will come and smack Shu, sooner or later.
3) Is this Nisekoi’s author admitting defeat, knowing he has serious issues? The anime script-writer poking fun at him? “Damn that Shu, he keeps adding subplots left and right!” – The same could be said of Nisekoi – even from the get-go, it has two subplots – “The promise girl” and “The fake girlfriend”, and then we add more girls, more keys, more promises… in a way, I’ve always said Nisekoi is an issue of the author being unable to decide on “Best Girl” or even “Best Storyline”, so he keeps adding more stories, which is sort of what adlib is – the more you go, the harder it is to rein it all together.
4) Ha! Raku takes the author (Shu) by his horns. He’s hemmed in by ridiculous subplots? Then he’ll make them even more ridiculous! He’ll attack, rather than defend! “I have to deal with your love confession? Then we’re siblings! Now go away!” :P
5) And Raku solves the Marika issue the same as he did before, and why I don’t actually like her as a character. She chases a dream. She goes, hard, after Raku, but the moment he shows her love, or the personality that made her care for him, she runs away. She chases him because she can’t get him, and it seems she doesn’t truly want to get him, escaping from it, for to achieve Raku will be the death of the decade-old dream.
3) Love is a Battle:
1) “This man is dangerous”, says Claude, after nearly killing Raku. But he means dangerous to her heart, and thus dangerous to his.
2) Claude x Chitoge! Yeah, Claude wants Chitoge to never go for another man, he wants to keep her as the pure “Young Lady” forever. He cares for her, but his is a stifling and controlling kind of love, one that remembers a 6 years-old girl and wishes her to remain such forever. While Chitoge’s true father has no qualms of using her to maintain peace, Claude cares for her a tad too much.
5) There we go, Chitoge admitting she’s in love with Raku. But considering Raku hadn’t admitted to loving Chitoge, it’s not like it’ll make things simpler, and we still have half an episode to go, and the tragic end to the couple’s love to get through.
4) A Contender is Waiting by the Wings:
1) Wait, whaaaaat?! They ended Romeo and Juliet with the balcony scene?! LOL!
2) Casual-clothes and casual attitude semi-blushing Chitoge is a very specific Chitoge, but it’s the best Chitoge.
3) Raku giving Onodera her Juliet memory? Kinda reminds me of A Walk to Remember.
4) Sunset shots are the best. There’s something about those warm hues, and the fuzzy edges to everything.
5) Oooh, Onodera! Yeah, this show is a harem, or at least a love triangle, they can’t end the series with Chitoge appearing to win, right? So after leaving Onodera aside for much of the show, with barely any moments, they make sure the final scene is all her, in her best outfit, and with her best face. We’re seeing her through Raku’s eyes, the one who says he loves her.
6) I also quite liked the final ED-song. Had a nice tune to it.
Post Series Thoughts:
First of all, I like RomComs. It’s not that I like the “surprise kiss-stopper moments!” of which we’ve had a couple this series, because I don’t. I like those half-blushy moments, the moments characters are somewhat shy and must admit how they feel, or when it’s obvious to you how they feel yet they act slightly obstinate.
This show was sweet, and mostly delivered on that. In the second half of the show, I had a few episodes I didn’t enjoy. I didn’t care much for Marika – not necessarily as a character, because I liked how she was willing to go for what she wanted, but they worked hard to make her manipulative in a bad way, and when she was close to getting what she wanted, she ran away.
I like RomComs, which means I also like the misunderstandings, and the shuffling about without getting much done – but I like them as part of the route, I don’t like them as the final goal. The author here sometimes went too far, especially with Onodera’s confession on the pier. If you have a moment, you can undo it when the characters are aware it happened and aren’t willing to admit what it really means, but to undo it completely isn’t a “null” moment, but a negative one. The heavy fanservice in that episode didn’t help things either.
The ending was pretty great, and it’s almost funny they had to remind us Onodera truly existed as a contender. From Onodera and Chitoge, Onodera is more my taste, at least looks-wise. When they introduced Tsugumi, who was feisty and all, I quite liked her, but when you look at the series, the one the author, or at least the director cared the most for, and had given to not just the best scenes, but the most scenes is Chitoge. They needed to remind us Onodera is actually a contender, which is funny, and sad.
I came into this show expecting a “cliched RomCom”, because I like those, and that is what I had been given, essentially. It was an enjoyable ride, but it wasn’t always even. I give this show 6.8/10. I rarely give such shows over 7/10, so it’s a solid score.