Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso Ep. 8: Angry music

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Wow, creepy!

— The start of the episode reminds us that Takeshi passed up a trip overseas just to compete against Kousei, and after a week, I still can’t believe his parents and his tutor would allow him to make such an outrageous decision. Besides, why would you bother to compete against someone who hasn’t been in the scene for the past two years? Kousei is just that big of a deal, I guess.

— Not only that, this is a storm in a teacup. We’re not talking about Mozart vs. Salieri. We’re not talking about a rivalry between two individuals at the top of their field. These are just kids. They’re just kids in a junior competition. In ten years, they’ll look back and laugh at how dramatic they were. This is like getting worked up over a high school prom… actually, it’s even worse, since they’re just in junior high! I, too, won a lot of competitions as a kid. I don’t even care about them anymore. Those trophies are just collecting dust in a closet, because I was a kid competing against kids.

— I gotta admit, however, that these episodes are pretty easy to watch. I mean, he’s just playing the piano. What is there to say?

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— Well, the cliches are pretty fucking hilarious:

“Confronting the music with sincerity. A strong will enabling him to stand up to his fears.”

“Could this be the same piano?”

“Will you let me chase you down like a mirage again?”

Oh, for the love of God… I even like the idea of Kousei inspiring Takeshi to take the piano seriously. Having a rival makes you focus and stay on point. Great. That’s fantastic. No problems there. I can even relate. The show, however, just can’t stop spouting these pretentious-as-fuck lines — the same lines that I have quoted above. Give me a break.

— People compare the music performances to Nodame Cantabile, and I don’t think that’s really fair. For one, Nodame Cantabile came out in 2007. Yeah, that was seven years ago. Not only that, those performance scenes involved an entire orchestra. This is just one person playing the piano.

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— Look! Takeshi even has fangirls! But of course, what fangirl can resist such a golden-haired pianist?

— Takeshi’s tutor even adds, “A rival is a special thing. All the more so for adolescent boys.” The emphasis is mine. Really now, dude? Really?

— What does it even mean for a pianist to have an imposing presence? The dialogue slays me.

— Even back then, all the kids ever did was glare at Kousei. They can’t even be assed to look at the camera.

— Next up is Emi, and the pre-game narrative is that she’s been struggling lately. Y’see, she’s a girl, so she’s temperamental and emotional! Even the weather can affect her! Ugh. And it’s all Kousei’s fault too! He disappeared for two years, so her motivation to compete went with him!

— But before Emi can start playing, Takeshi’s asshole tutor has one more comment to make: “Today, [Takeshi will] destroy Arima, and head overseas.” Man, even the adults are immature in this anime. Holy shit, you’re talking about a kid in middle school. Let’s try not to destroy children.

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— It’s not like Emi’s tutor is any better: “We women are combative creatures. Do you understand?” Such petty adults. No wonder the kids are rotten.

— Apparently, Emi saw Kousei’s first public performance ever. How young were they back then? Like five? Six? Nevertheless, his itty-bitty performance moved her so much, she bawled her eyes out. More importantly, it made her want to become a pianist too. And look at her now. She’s a total pianist.

— But you want to know what’s really sad? She understands what his mother had put him through! Basically, Emi has a better understanding of Kousei’s problems than any of his actual friends! Of course, this is because she has a thing for him, but so does Tsubaki, so what’s her sorry excuse? In fact, I don’t know whether to applaud Emi’s insightful nature or feel even more sorry for Kousei.

— This soundtrack, though. It’s like they’re about to save the universe or something. But instead, Emi’s just getting ready to play the piano.

— Of course, Ryota’s entranced by her beauty as well. I wonder if the guy will ever make a decision, or will his eyes wander until they inevitably get him into trouble?

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— Honestly, I think wearing a crimson-red dress for such a performance is a bit tacky. You’re detracting from your very own performance.

— More pretentious lines!

“Like a stormy sea, the waves of her emotions are surging unsteadily.”

“Let it all out with a bang! Let your feelings reach them!”

— Emi: “I’ve been playing the piano all this time in order to reject Kousei Arima.” You’re 14! What kid thinks like this?

— Her performance is so passionate, you can feel the colors of her emotions. The entire concert hall is then literally bathed in a red and yellow filter. Haha, very subtle. About as subtle as these performances.

—  What strikes me is that there’s neither grace nor gentleness here. Both characters harbor strong feelings about this day — about Kousei’s sudden reappearance — so they just hammer away at the poor instrument.

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— So y’know, I would love for Kousei to come out and play a soft, delicate piece just to serve as a contrast, but I’ve already forgotten what he intends to play. Plus, this probably wouldn’t impress the judges. In any case, we won’t get to hear his performance until next week. And seeing as how it’s his first competition in two years, it’ll likely be a disaster.

One last laugh for the road.

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14 thoughts on “Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso Ep. 8: Angry music”

  1. I cringed so hard reading this, this anime is ridiculously pretentious. And what’s up with Takeshi’s hair? It looks like Goku’s, only more ridiculous because of the more realistic toned-down artstyle compared to DBZ.

  2. I have to stifle myself from laughing every time I see some Redditor try to promote this anime as the most cultured show of this fall.

    It seems like you could slap some bright colors and maaaybe some consistent work together, coat tired, overwrought teenage “drama” with some music and big words and metaphors that sound coo-I mean, meaningful, and still convince the nearest passerby it’s high art these days.

    1. It’s all about the feel, really. The show feels right. It just falls apart when you look past A-1 Pictures’ production values and actually listen to these characters talk.

    2. I still remember cooking shows that did the same overreaction whenever the judge eats the magical food the protagonist cooks up every episode…

      I don’t watch these types of shows, but I would like to believe this is a bit similar.

  3. “It’s not like Emi’s tutor is any better: “We women are combative creatures. Do you understand?” Such petty adults. No wonder the kids are rotten.”
    Hahahahaha your opinion about the adults in this anime is awesome, they act like their pupils are racetrack horses.

    “My goal is Arima Kousei”… I always find annoying and pretentious when a character call his rival by his entire name, why not just Arima, that guy or whatever, it’s tiresome, I don’t call anybody like that in my daily life, is just overly dramatic.
    Anyway, this episode was easy to watch as well since they’re just interpreting and the pixie girl is tied to a viewers chair, I just wish they shut up their “minds” a little, they talk unnecessary stuff, girl I don’t care if you ate caeki this morning, shut up I want to enjoy the song.

    1. why not just Arima, that guy or whatever, it’s tiresome, I don’t call anybody like that in my daily life, is just overly dramatic.

      Just an anime thing, I guess.

  4. Man, this sounded a bit like those toy-related shows Sunrise produces for Bandai, where the characters just have to exaggerate even the most mundane things. I would have been okay with Emi’s performance if they hadn’t started yapping about colors.

    And, unless they are going to be part of the main cast, I don’t exactly get why Takeshi and Emi were given the spotlight here. I mean, come on, I get that they are passionate about their “rivalry” with Kousei, but probably so does any other kid who have competed against him before. So why these two?

      1. I do get that with Takeshi. With Emi, I don’t know. The show even went out of its way to point out that she’s really lagging behind in the competition circuit as of late (not that second and third place finishes aren’t impressive). Also can’t wrap my head around as to why the show needs to have Kousei feel Emi’s “anger and lonelines” (whatever those are supposed to mean).

        1. Ahhh, teenage love. I can live with that. Now if only these kids stop spouting philosophical tracts and just talk the way 14-year olds talk.

  5. I remember reading the manga to this and couldn’t make it past like 10 chapters. It was so GODDAMN pretentious. They explicitly make it a point that “hey we’re just kids!” at a point, yet it goes out of their way to make them spout ridiculous dramatic psychological dialogue at every turn. With Nodame Cantabile some things made sense because they were grown adults, and Piano no Mori (manga) felt more realistic for kids too. But this goes overboard with the flowery hallmark language especially out of the main character’s annoying mouth, and ridiculous “OH HE’S PLAYING THE PIANO, ANGELS SINGING AROUND HIM/HER, FLOWERS BLOOMING, HAIR WISPING IN MAGIC” expected music-manga spreads.

    To be honest, it almost feels like a manipulative cash-in copy of Nodame Cantabile and other such manga, with all the “selling points” set to 11. The main girl was also infuriating at how shallow and cliche she was, at least as far as I read.

    When I heard the anime was coming out, and it getting so highly praised, I guess I can say I wasn’t surprised, but I was disappointed. It’s such a cheap series.

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