I wasn't looking forward to watching this episode, because I knew that it would be about Miki and how they managed to "get her back", and I'm pretty sad to report that that's exactly what it was about. Sigh.

This episode picked off right at the end of ep11, where Ritsuko told Miki, in no uncertain terms, that Ryuuguu Komachi was a 3-idol group and those idols were already set, with no changes planned. After the OP, there was a tiny skip where at least another day had passed, as the girls spoke about how Miki hadn't shown up again for practice. In all of this, it was revealed that she wasn't picking up any phones calls or answering texts - basically, cutting all lines of communication. That's professional.

It's interesting how he didn't think to ask Ritsuko before she approached him.

Producer finally figured out what the problem was when Ritsuko talked to him, explaining what Miki's last words to her had been. Producer managed to put things together and remember his half-hearted "promise" to Miki, acting surprised and weary that it had grown into something so problematic. After he finally managed to get through to Miki (I thought phones in Japan had the interesting "block" feature; I assume she wanted to feel like they cared about her), she stated that she had lost all enthusiasm for work and had no plans to come back if she couldn't be a part of Ryuuguu Komachi. So, essentially, she was being a spoiled brat.

Are they insinuating that older girls are any different?

I'm so conflicted on so much of this episode. Kotori explained to Producer that he was being too harsh with her and that, in the end, she was still a young girl that would sometimes act irrationally based on her emotions. While that may or may not be true (everyone is capable of acting irrationally sometimes, regardless of age), I don't understand why that felt so much like a cop-out. Kotori managed to get Producer to calm down and attempt different tactics to get through to Miki, which was a good thing. However, it just felt as though her behaviour was being condoned, which I really can't understand. Doesn't this girl have a contract? Aren't there legal ramifications to her behaviour? Or is 765 Productions a completely different type of business?

All the costumes are so different. It's actually interesting.

The other idols, taking a backseat in this episode, attempted to keep going without Miki - not in the malicious way, but rather in the "show must go on" way. Several times, Chihaya kept the group going, especially when they became very downtrodden about Miki's disappearance. I really like that facet of her personality; however "impure" her reasons (wanting the concert to be a success so she could be a singer), she took all the right steps in keeping everyone together. By the end of the episode, when all was well, Haruka asked if Chihaya had been angry with Miki's antics, to which the singer responded that she had felt it a little bit, but it paled in comparison to the bigger picture. What professionalism!

Her friends also look pretty advanced. Are they all the same age?

Miki spent her day (and insert song) wandering around, meeting up with friends, declining invitations from lecherous boys, singing for a TV crew - and that last thing allowed Producer to find her. She ran away from him and he chased her down, both of them yelling things at each other while moving through crowds. Producer eventually managed to get her to stop, wherein she reiterated that she was quitting. He bowed and apologized, which caught Miki by surprise. I really didn't like that part; it felt as though she was getting a get-out-of-jail-free card. It's one thing for Producer to apologize - he was in the wrong and it would be better to be friendlier with the idols instead of masquerading as the cold-hearted management - but it's very disturbing to see that Miki faced no consequences for her absence at such a critical time. Seriously, does she not have a contract?

Her costume is easily the sluttiest of them all.

The episode devolved into a "date", wherein Producer walked around with Miki as she toured the streets. (This anime's roots are showing...) Miki found herself slipping up many times throughout the outing, which Producer caught, and he eventually managed to convince her to come back. She continued acting like a spoiled brat throughout, only accepting that she wouldn't be performing with Ryuuguu Komachi because she was "promised" the chance to shine brighter at the concert. Her return to the other idols was met with acceptance, with Chihaya announcing that they all needed to make up for lost time (and not holding grudges, thereby taking the high road).

Where would these stickers go?

I disliked many portions of this episode, but the part that bothered me the most was essentially how Miki walked away without any problems. She had no punishment, no probation, nothing to denote that something wrong was done. Really, what's keeping another idol from doing something similar? I get that she's still young, compared to the other idols and especially given her profession, but that doesn't mean anything. She chose to be an idol, and there's a certain amount of professionalism that needs to be instilled into her. I get that she's probably a money-maker - at least, a future one, with better marketing - but they're not even keeping her reined in to capitalize on that aspect. This episode seemed like it tried to present a realistic concept except make it have a feel-good ending; those two things don't always go together.

She's still pretty cutesy, even beyond the bratty nature.

This was a ridiculous episode, one that felt the most like a dating sim out of all the episodes so far. I'm beginning to really dislike the fact that this is a 2-season anime. Yes, it has a lot of episodes to redeem itself - but it's just digging itself a bigger hole every week to crawl out from. Possible?


Nichijou Ep24

This is just so late, but I'm trying to not feel bad about it. Better late than never, I think. Gambatte~

This episode was - surprisingly - quite focused on Sasahara. After complaining now for a few episodes that he's an interesting character who should get more coverage, he's the finally the focus! I was quite pleased with this episode; interestingly enough, despite being the "theme" of the episode, he actually wasn't on-screen for a lot of it. Still, the entire situation was quite well done and it definitely squashed an inklings I had about this anime tapering off.

For science!

The episode was another one without an OP, beginning with Nakamura-sensei and her epic love of Nano. She was going through sneakily-shot photos of the robot (a theme that continued throughout various short scenes in the episode; that Nakamua-sensei is quite the spy), when she saw a black cat outside. I'm pretty sure she assumed that it was Sakamoto, because she threw caution to the wind and attempted to chase after it. It only led to her getting caught standing on the fence on top of a rather large incline with the members of the surrounding houses yelling in confusion. I wonder if her fall broke any bones?

Ah Mio, you brought it on yourself.

After the sponsorship message, Yukko was seen playing her way through the hallway when she stumbled onto Nano and Sasahara. It was hardly anything candid; Nano was carrying a lot of books (most likely assisting a teacher - Nakamura-sensei?) and she dropped one, which Sasahara picked up for her. However, Yukko's mind twisted it and she ran to the classroom to tell Mio, who was busy writing a report. Despite pretending to not care, it was a situation where it was clear that Mio did care, as she wouldn't drop the topic and kept asking Yukko for more details. By the time the full story was out, Mio had realized it wasn't such a big deal at all and showed her relief by making fun of Yukko's excitement.

That switch is quite disastrous.

As we saw in an episode prior, Yukko's evil side is quite extreme. Not content to be made fun of, she suddenly began lying with the sole purpose of disturbing Mio. The reaction was instantaneous; Mio was fully engrossed in the outrageous story that Nano and Sasahara were kissing and whatnot, with the courtyard involved. As Yukko sat down to hurriedly write her report (I had been wondering why Mio would have work that Yukko didn't), Mio's imagination ran away with her in what can only be described as a terrible shoujo scene. She finally gave up just daydreaming and ran out to see for herself. Nano, being coincidentally right outside the door, refuted the strange claims of yakisoba bread and courtyards. Yukko's punishment for lying was just as instantaneous.

What an easy 1million yen to make.

Helvetica Standard is usually a hit-or-miss with me, and this episode's was absolutely hilarious. It featured two classmates, with one attempting to get the other to tell her about her crush. Secrecy was promised on the condition of 1million yen, and so the blue-haired girl finally revealed it. Her friend immediately told everyone...and then dropped a stack of 10,000 yen notes onto the desk. This scene was amazingly funny, considering its simple premise.

What kind of acting club is this?

The second scene about Sasahara featured his other admirer, Tachibana. At the dojo, where she got defeated quite quickly by Mio's older sister, she was walking home with her younger sister when Mihoshi dropped a bombshell - Sasahara had been attending the dojo recently. This scene gave away some very important news - Sasahara and Tachibana used to attend the dojo together and, upon entering high school, Sasahara decided to join the Acting Club instead of the Kendo Club. Apparently, this didn't mean that he was no longer interested in kendo, given his recent attending. This scene was only so-so, mostly because I don't like Tachibana that much.

I first thought his food was poisoned or something.

The only scene to not really have anything to do with Sasahara in this episode dealt with Nano-Professor-Sakamoto. Apparently, Sakamoto had quite the cold and was (appearance-wise) at death's door. This scene actually taught me a few important lessons: first, that cats get sick (I feel so sheltered...); and second, that cats can't have green onions. The scene wasn't really about taking care of Sakamoto at all; it was more about Professor wanting to be paid attention to. She did this by pretending to be sick - but Nano saw right passed her (it's not like her acting was even that good, to begin with). The scene eventually devolved into Professor being pissy-face and Nano attempting to placate her with words. (It's good that she didn't give in to the demands of chocolate; Nano is becoming a better care-giver by the day.)

It's probably safe to assume she doesn't like him.

Before getting into the final scene, I wanted to talk about this short featuring cold days. So, these two boys were walking down the road, talking about how cold it was, when a girl (classmate, most likely) ran up, pressed her hands to one boy's cheek, cried out, "Cold attack," and then ran away. What the hell? That's just... Are Japanese girls really like this? There's a lot of touchy-feely going on there. As a child, I recall people flicking other people's extremely red ears to conflict pain; that's an attack, if anything. I just don't understand...

Quite the aristocrat.

The final scene to do with Sasahara actually involved his presence; Mio was at the vending machine when she dropped her coin and it rolled right into the boy of the (half) hour. I realize that a lot of my interest in this character has to do with hearsay and not his actual personality; he really came off as quite mean by using Mio's coin while haughtily performing a monologue. I do have to give him points for staying cool under pressure; he's just too good to flip the upside-down cup so that the drink comes out right, hm?

So, that's how Mio knows Sasahara! That's a nice one.

It's good to see such a strong episode so close to the end of the series; I know I shouldn't, but I suddenly have a lot of hope for the remaining 2 episodes (still unwatched by me). I'll try to not go into it with breakable expectations.


R-15 in Review [1/10]

So the first (of 2) anime that I actually finished watching after saying I would continue watching without posts. The amount of anime I drop the second I stop writing about it is astounding! This doesn't necessarily mean it was awesome, it just worked for my schedule and in this case, a chance to watch mindless drivel.

Shinryaku!? Ika Musume Ep01

While going down the Fall Preview post that Pearz created, this was the first anime that really caught my attention. I knew that I would watch it and, barring a complete team overhaul, I would love it. I absolutely loved the first season, after all.

I watched the first season mostly on an extremely long train ride this summer while in China, so I don't know if that coloured my views in any way. It was a great comedy show, full of insane happenings (kind of like Nichijou) and a ridiculous premise that Ika Musume (a squid girl) has come to the surface to take over the world. This first episode didn't disappoint; it retained the feel of the first season perfectly.

I'm so jealous of her multi-tasking tentacles.

As with the first series, this episode was broken into three parts. The first one, "Who's Up For A Squid-vasion!?", jumped right into the fray with Ika Musume watching an alien invasion movie and feeling sad for the invaders. Eiko chastised her to do some work around the house, and Ika Musume began explaining her sad fate of being overused by her heinous house-mates. Eiko wasn't about to fall for it, and reminded Ika Musume that, other than working at the shop and doing odd chores around the house, she pretty much just played video games and lazed around in the house.

That tiny robot is pretty cute. I want.

Ika Musume, saddened that her ideas of invasion weren't going so well, resorted to cleaning up the beach of litter. Being the first episode, most of the characters made an appearance in this first segment, beginning with Takeru. After throwing away his ball because she assumed it was a bomb, she ran into Cindy, who wanted an interview with her. After destroying her recorder (which was apparently very expensive, given that Cindy hadn't paid it off yet), Ika Musume walked to the Lemon House, where she tackled Nagisa after thinking the oven timer was a bomb.

I think he might have been in the volleyball tournament...

Leaving the beach house (where Nagisa was horrified and freaking out about coming into physical contact with Ika Musume), Sanae showed up for a split second. Knowing better, Ika Musume's only reason for running away was that Sanae was just 100% dangerous by nature. The last bit of introductions was Goro and his friend, Tatsuo. To be fair, I really don't recall this other lifeguard, making his indignation at not being recognized even funnier. Running away from Goro's offer of free food - an attempt to impress Chizuru, but seen as an attempt to poison her - Ika Musume suddenly realized that, like a real invader, she had many people out to get her.

Opening your eyes is always a pro move.

As with most of Ika Musume's revelations, it began to go wrong when she showed up at Lemon House as an invader, mirroring her first appearance back in the first season. She stole people's shrimp, sprayed ink all over the place (though Cindy and Sanae were quite pleased), and then began her real invasion, which involved jumping menacingly at the customers. However, as soon as it began, her wrath was dispelled by an annoyed Chizuru. Ika Musume apologized earnestly, looking quite beaten up, and attempted to save face by calling an end to her current plan of her own free will.

Genre change to horror?

The second part, "Ink That's A Love Rival!?", featured the reappearance of Kiyomi, Ika Musume's good friend. I remember the episode in the last season when she was introduced; I was so happy that, quirks and story aside, there was someone that genuinely liked Ika Musume! As expected, the arrival of Kiyomi to Lemon House caused Sanae to go crazy with jealousy, unable to understand why Ika Musume was acting so close with someone.

I'd be creeped out.

Kiyomi's club-mates showed up as well, and I was quite surprised to see that they got along so well with Ika Musume. Sanae just continued to grow more and more jealous, become more and more obvious with her eavesdropping, until the club members simply introduced themselves to her. Sanae blurted out that she liked Ika Musume, but the girls agreed due to their own admiration for her. This scene really made me remember the greatness of the scene where Ika Musume played softball; she has so many skills~

I've actually always enjoyed the translations.

The third and final part, "Making A Few Squid With Jellyfish!?", was focused on the sudden onslaught of jellyfish. Not knowing the animal kingdom so well (other than Finding Nemo, I guess), I had no idea if there was more to the jellyfish-squid thing or not. Anyway, Ika Musume attempted to first side with the jellyfish that were stinging the beach-goers, but getting stung led to her siding against them. I was actually surprised to see that the actual fight against jellyfish involved picking them out of the water and bagging them. Isn't it hard to not get stung? What happened to them afterwards?

Money. It solves so much.

At Chizuru's suggestion, a Jellyfish Collection Competition was held in order to fully collect the jellyfish. Ika Musume's competitive side kept her from fully understanding her flaws - she kept bagging too many jellyfish into the same bag, rupturing the plastic and accidentally releasing all of them (and getting stung in the process). Cindy and her co-workers (Martin, Harris and Clark) ended up winning the competition...because they caught one and multiplied it. (Cloning?!) It wasn't really explained, but there's a good chance that the reason there were so many jellyfish around to begin with was actually their new toy. Ah, science.

I always get so hungry after watching this anime.

I'm glad to see that this episode was exactly like the ones from the previous season; given that I liked the last set so much, it's a treat. To be honest, it's not entirely necessary to watch the first season before picking this up. There's continuity such that characters return, but there isn't really much story-wise to "catch up" on. I remember the "climax" of last season very well, and there was nothing there that would have affected the upcoming episodes. This is just not that kind of anime. Watching it out of order (as in this season, and then the first one) is perfectly fine. There may be some discrepancies (such as how characters met), but nothing much.

So she is capable of looking scary.

While I will be keeping up with this anime, more or less, I won't be posting about it. It's mostly a time issue - as in, I just don't have enough of it. Nonetheless, I'm still excited for this series for personal reasons.


Ikoku Meiro no Croisee Eps10-12 [END]

With one extra episode in this batch, it's the end of the series! It's sad how, for a while, I thought that perhaps this anime was pretty tolerable. The last episode put an end to that madness. I'm glad this is over.

The three episodes of this batch actually fit pretty well together. Eps10-11 were kind of a pair, continuing stories of one of Claude's customers and Yune's sister, and also beginning the plot point of Claude's father, something that spilled into ep12. While it was pretty humdrum to see eps10-11, ep12 just pretty much killed the series. I was reminded of how little some things made sense and just how annoying Yune was.

Of course she knew what Jean looked like.

Ep10 began with Yune stumbling onto Claude pouring over some old designs and deciding to leave him alone, making dinner even though it was the boy's turn. Oscar decided to interrupt him once he found out, which revealed that Claude had an appointment with some Monsieur Gidrel, a man who had been a great fan of Jean's (Claude's father). This set up the plot point of Claude's father, although it wouldn't really appear so much until ep12.

Pictures can be scary.

After Claude left, Yune rushed back to the shop, though accidentally dilly-dallying due to things like a baby and a cat. It was pretty evident that she was quite comfortable with the Gallery, considering she had gotten miserably lost and learned some harsh lessons (did she really, though?) in a previous episode. Once she got back to the shop, she yearned to have something to do but Oscar really wasn't that type. Upon finding an old projector, they began setting up the store-front to use it.

She looked like a boy. Seriously.

There was a momentary flashback to Yune's childhood in Japan, and to her older sister. I was a little startled by her sister's pale blue eyes, but I was even more confused with how cute the girl was, considering Yune bothers me so much these days. Anyway, Alan dropping by the store caused the projection to turn into a "public display", with many members of the Gallery attending. It was interesting that Alice fit in so well; giving up her seat to an elderly woman was a move I didn't expect from an aristocrat.

Fight to the death!

While all of this was happening, Claude was on the train to and from his customer's place, thinking about the job at hand and his father, in general. I suppose that, since it showed up as early as ep10, I can't really gripe that the mentions of his father in ep12 came out of nowhere, but it still felt that way. There's something about the way the story-telling is done here... But, that can wait for a later post. Claude was very frank with Monsieur Gidrel, stating that he wasn't his father and couldn't recreate things. How cheeky.

Claude absolutely has a harem.

Ep11 picked up with Claude's plot point from ep10; he returned to the shop one day with the news that his design had been bought. He was pretty gruff and unhappy about it though, since it was obvious Monsieur Gidrel was still a fan of Claude's father. While that was going on, Alice dropped by to invite Yune to go to the department store with her, something that Claude was quite annoyed about and put his foot down about. This point continued as Oscar mused that Claude's dislike of the department store probably had something to do with his father.

That's kind of cute...

In order to make it up to her, Claude decided that the three of them would head out to a picnic. Oscar's "magic" was a focus of the episode, for some reason, in it that Yune seemed to actually believe it. Despite having been told earlier that rain in Paris didn't last for long, she still believed when Oscar said he would stop the rain, just for her. Ah, so naive... The picnic seemed relatively boring, or maybe that's just the words of a technology-dependent fool.

No, Shione, stay strong!

After getting her drunk (it was more an accident rather than malicious intent), Yune became quite sad when thinking about her older sister. Apparently, Shione's lighter-coloured eyes had caused all of the people around her to assume that she was harbinger of bad luck and ill omen. Her eyes eventually degenerated to the point where she was essentially blind (so some kind of genetic disorder?), while Yune (who had been frail since birth) got better. Yune, for some reason, thought that it was her fault, since she had told Shione to "be blind" so as to not have to see any of the scowls aimed her way. This scene was probably supposed to incite emotion within me, but it really didn't. It's also sad that I liked Shione a lot more than Yune.

What an interesting nickname.

Ep12 was, honestly, the worst of this batch. It started without an OP, featuring Yune and Claude walking through the Gallery where everyone knew and loved Yune. It was meant to show that, with enough time, she had become part of the family of the Gallery. It also set up the focus of this episode - a storeowner's cat kept disappearing, and so he put a bell on it. After that, it had yet to show up at home again. It's a pretty simple plot point, right? I can't believe it turned out so horrible. (If it's not clear, the cat represented Yune. The storeowner, in this case, represented Claude. The bell represented a yearning to keep Yune-cat close.)

He doesn't look tiny.

Back at the shop, Yune wanted to help out Claude as he worked, which is really what began the entire fiasco. She picked up the smallest work gloves and Claude flew off the handle, yelling at her to go away. It's interesting just how to emo he really is. I hated this same trait in Victorique from Gosick. Anyway, Yune was extremely saddened and went away. At Claude's behest, Oscar explained that the gloves had belonged to Jean, who had a pretty small frame, and Claude had been caught off-guard (as it that justifies anything).

Once again, looking down at her. Yes, she's stupid, but still.

Oscar had told Yune that she could go for a walk around the Gallery, an idea she didn't take up until she heard the sounds of bells. Remembering the lost cat, she decided to head out to see if she could find it. This idea wasn't that terrible at first - what's the harm with just looking outside - but then it just slowly became more ridiculous. She went high and low in searching for the cat, while Claude freaked out. I don't understand why, considering she hadn't been gone for so long and he had told her to take a walk. Nonetheless, he ran outside and told everyone that he was frantically looking for Yune.

Indeed. What are you thinking?

Claude eventually found Yune on the roof. Really? That's where she decided to go in the search for a cat? Ugh. She lost her shoes, Claude yelled at her, she tripped and fell onto a glass ceiling, Claude yelled at her, and then the "truth" of his father came out. Claude resented the man for not being very warm and loving, and was still saddened by his accidental death - while working on the construction of the department store. Claude seemed to make his peace with his father's death, somehow, making up with Yune and promising that they'd go together to the department store eventually. Everything was tied up nicely. I hated it.

Foreshadowing to together-forever?

I really had no hope for this anime after the first few episodes and any slow climb to being good it displayed was absolutely destroyed with the final episode. It was more than ridiculous. There was no real emotion behind these stories, and everything seemed concocted just to end the anime "well". So terrible.


Dominion LoL Review:

First post in a while, and since I don't plan on doing any regular updates with LoL, (mainly due to expected death threats and whispers of my untimely end from the HON players here) I will be taking a look at the new game mode Dominion that RIOT Games has released for League of Legends.

Dominion is a brand new game mode that mirrors similar mini games such as WoW's Arathi Basin PvP. Players take their favorite champ and capture the 5 locations on the map in an attempt to dwindle the other teams Nexus points to 0. Players can also do this by killing the enemy team and completing "quests" by defending and capturing a specific location .
This game mode has you starting at level 3 with increased gold per second and faster leveling with shorter death times. Overall its a fast action game that requires quick thinking and good team-play, no single player can "carry" a team on this map.

After trying out the Beta and playing a few games since official release, the game mode has made no changes to individual champions. This means I can rock my Karthus in any game and easily reach #1 rank for each game. While new items have been added specifically for this game mode, (with others removed) some champions attain an edge over others and it will take some time before anything is done about it, assuming RIOT does indeed plan to balance champions for this game mode since champions are designed for the classic game mode and not Dominion. However it comes down to more skill than anything unlike hte Classic mode which is nice since its at a much faster pace and personal skill weighs heavily on this game mode over Classic mode.

I personally find the game fun with friends and for when I feel the need to play something faster that requires more skill over Classic mode.

Heres a video of an epic close game comeback win, with myself rank #1 for my team.

Still fiddling with Export options in Adobe Premier and it looks very blurry so just pretend you've had a couple of drinks and it will seem normal.


Science Time - Revisiting Ookarin's Reading Steiner

So, during my latest comment on my other science post, I came to a startling realization that, hidden inside of Ookarin, is the power of a god. That is the TL;DR version to take away from this. Either way, it was one of those awkward revelations that made me just have to start a new post, even though I wanted to be done with Steins;Gate. I guess it is okay, since everything is going to be done airing this week and this is the calm before the storm of posts I need to make for next season.

Hanasaku Iroha in Review [6/10]

This was a long run, I should really stop doing 2 cour anime if I'm not certain I will like it.  I felt committed after 10 episode and my need to not drop something halfway kept me posting and watching even though I had long lost interest. Alas I have finished it, at least it had a very strong ending.

Hanasaku Iroha 26 - An End to my Torment

Exactly how I feel :3

This episode was much better then I expected but that still didn't justify the brutal rest of the season. The second half was extremely well done to wrap things up nicely with an open ending for a potential season two. If season two happens, there is no chance I'm covering it unless I see Godzilla and Gundams battling it out in the PV. I was lulled into this by that awesome first episode, never again!

Ikoku Meiro no Croisee Eps08-09

I wonder why Ayako Fansubs suddenly became so sluggish with this anime around the same time that I became lazy with watching it. The final episode was just released today, though, so there's another one to cross off the list (finally).

This batch dealt with the Camille-Claude situation that had been hinted at before. While there was some closure, it didn't really feel like there was enough. These two episodes left me almost rooting for these two, although it's pretty clear (I think) that Claude is being set up to be with Yune. This author (same as Gosick) really likes inter-racial pairings, perhaps. I really don't know; the remaining 3 episodes will reveal what's really going on.

Ah, old school thinking.

The episode began with Claude and Yune heading to the mansion, since Yune had been helped out by Alice when she was sick (with the sending of the doctor and whatnot). Claude seemed a little resistant, preferring to not go to the mansion at all, but he did it out of honour and a sense of duty. Just like with Gosick, where everything seemed to happen out of nowhere, the Claude-Camille thing here really just suddenly dropped in. Apparently, the two had played together all the time when they were young, with lots of feelings most likely involved, but then something happened.

No fairy tales of marrying for love here.

One of the key factors of this episode - and this batch, actually - was that Camille never really had it in her mind to marry Claude. Perhaps they had actually been "lovers" as children (in the non-adult way), but Camille never once thought that she and Claude could be together. By his actions, he might have thought otherwise. It brought to question an interesting notion - extra-marital affairs might not have been a big deal in France at the time. I've always known that men were able to have mistresses pretty freely, but I didn't know that it was okay for women too. In the way that Camille and Alice both talked, it seemed as though that was the case.

Why so mean?

Yune didn't really get much screen-time in this episode, as it was really a little more focused on Claude and Camille. She was taken to the garden by Alice, where they had afternoon tea (while Claude stayed indoors with Camille), and then taken to Alice's childhood room, where Alice recounted a story that she had made up in earlier years of a foreign girl with jet black hair and eyes arriving. It was only when Alice ran off to prepare Japanese-style tea that Camille showed up. (It's pretty weird how Claude's plan of action for the day was to just hang out at the mansion.)

I'm pretty sure it was the dress that Alice was wearing.

Her role in this entire scene was rather questionable; she seemed to be jealous of Yune at times, heckling her, but she also seemed as though she were giving Yune advice. In the end, I'm pretty sure she's just a woman tied down by her fate, still bitter about the goings-on around her. I don't particularly like her character, but it adds a little more to the story than the naive (and annoying) Yune trotting around all the time. The episode ended with Camille helping Yune into a dress that Alice wore in the past (and wrongly claiming that it had been her...?), which is exactly where ep09 picked up.

Alice is quite coddled, just as planned.

Ep09 saw Alice finding Yune and taking her back to the garden for some Japanese-style tea (although she initially messed it up by adding milk and sugar). More talking about the symbolism of the corset preceded this event; I get it already. The corset is binding the women. Move on. This was actually the most time that Yune would get in this episode; once the flashback began, she was obviously nowhere to be seen.

So, you're only secretly tarnishing your name.

The flashback began with some scenes that were seen in the previous episode; namely, Camille talking about how her mother hated stray cats (with a lot of hinting that it was actually "outsiders"), but she herself loved them (as in Claude). The scenes continued with various incidents were Claude visited Camille - and then various times where Claude wanted to take Camille out with him, to view a puppet show for example, but failed. After Camille secretly ran to the Gallery one day and Claude chased her back, she finally revealed that the only reason her nannies had allowed Claude to visit was under the condition that Camille not leave the estate. (Why couldn't this have been said before, without all the drama, anyway?)

I wonder if slightly less noble women didn't wear them too.

When the flashbacks finally ended, Claude was walking back with Yune when she mentioned that Camille wore a corset without complaining, also providing the miraculous insight that perhaps Camille wore the corset for people other than herself. This brought the entire Claude-Camille saga to its end; Camille had realized her limitations and decided to stay within the boundaries created for her. In doing this, she was trying to ensure a better life for her younger sister. In that sense, she probably had also given up on Claude (unless an extramarital affair was one day possible); however, as with most feelings-related decisions, she sometimes wavered (as with her jealousy of Yune). It's nothing confusing; it just feels a little out-of-place since it got so serious so Gosick, actually.

Momotaro! I agree; it's pretty weird.

This batch of episodes basically just added in some drama to the otherwise happy anime, and ended it off pretty quickly. I can't see Camille posing any problems in any relationship that Claude and Yune choose to have; if anything, she just served as a convenient catalyst to get the ball rolling a little faster. I like that some more intricacy was added to the story, but it feels just as out-of-place here as it did when it happened in Gosick.