The time has come to finally put this student council election to bed, because we already know what the outcome is gonna be. We just don’t know how the characters are gonna get there.
— Yu kicks off the episode by saying that he wants Miyuki to beat Miko decisively. I dunno, doesn’t she always lose decisively? That’s the impression I got from previous episodes.
— Speaking of Miko, she’s a nervous wreck. She does this thing where she writes the character “person” on her hand then swallows it. Apparently, if you put all your worries onto that “person,” you can then swallow your them into your gut and thus… well, not worry. But I dunno, I feel like any act that resembles taking crazy pills cannot be divorced from anxiousness. Just performing the act alone makes you nervous.
— It’s time for the candidates and their supports to deliver their speeches before the entire student body. As a result, Kobachi does her best to paint Miko in a good light, but it becomes readily apparent that these two are a little too clean-cut for politics. Yeah, yeah, in the ideal world, politics should just be about the issues and the candidates’ merits. But that’s not how society works. Telling a group of bored, self-obsessed teenagers that your best friend is pure and earnest is just not a winning move.
— When Kaguya goes on stage to deliver her speech, the contrast is blinding. She has Ai sitting in the crowd to help sway the students’ opinion. On the side, Chika leads a teacher to an anti-Shirogane section of the crowd. Last but not least, Yu had created a presentation full of tall promises. Miko is akin to that old man who stands outside in a busy street corner and tries to deliver fiery speeches. Meanwhile, Miyuki has a well-oiled political machine.
— You have to wonder, however, if any of these tricks are even necessary. After all, Miko’s still nervously gobbling up her worries. Then when she finally gets the chance to get on stage, she bottles it. No matter how many times she’s tried to become the student council president, she has never managed to conquer her stage fright. If anything, it has gotten worse and worse with each run.
— We thus get Miko’s backstory from Kobachi’s perspective. The girl often finds herself returning to an empty house because her parents have way too many responsibilities to focus on her. Her mom is distributing vaccines in a hot zone, and her father is a judge. Basically, neither of them can’t tear themselves away from their work. Now, I don’t want to be mean or anything, but… look, they might be good people, but they are not good parents. If you can’t focus on your child because your career is too demanding (i.e. your mission in life is too important), then you should never have had the child in the first place. This is blasphemy to some people, though. They think the act of reproduction should just be a given. But why should a poor child have to sacrifice her own happiness for her parents’ sake? It should be the other way around. They brought her into this world. They should sacrifice for her.
— In any case, Miko loves her parents dearly, so she’s not going to blame them. Instead, she blames the fact that the world has too many bad people. I dunno what bad people has to do with having to distribute vaccines in a hot zone, but she’s a child and she desperately needs a scapegoat. This, however, has the side effect of turning Miko into a stickler for rules, which in turn makes her deeply unpopular with her peers. And as they say, the rest is history. Miko can’t speak in front of the student body, because she’s afraid of them. She’s afraid of the disdain in their eyes.
— Yu confesses that he just doesn’t want Miko to be a laughingstock. I guess if Miyuki wins decisively, it means he’s just too good of a candidate rather than, y’know, Miko bombing her own chances.
— So of course, this is when Miyuki’s typical anime boy instincts kick in. Even though Kaguya and the rest of the team had worked so hard to secure this victory, he throws it all away by going on stage to help Miko out. He starts openly challenging her ideas, but at the same time, he’s encouraging her to look away from the crowd and focus on him instead. All of a sudden, Miko’s fiery passion returns. By goading her into debating him, Miyuki essentially allows Miko to present her ideas. The student body are at the edge of their seat, because they get to watch this upstart first year go after the incumbent. Hell, he even makes himself sound arrogant, so he’s kinda playing the bad guy.
— All across the medium, male protagonists usually have only one trick up their sleeve when it comes to solving these problems: by hurting themselves to prop someone else up. Miyuki doesn’t exactly drag himself through the mud to the extreme like say, Hachiman from My Youth Romantic Comedy Is Wrong, As I Expected, but it’s the same basic idea. And I guess I’m just kinda tired of this archetype. I’m tired of these anime boys solving every problem by playing the sacrificial lamb. Rather than look for an ideal solution, I cynically see it as a cheap attempt to curry favor from the audience. Everyone in the story’s gonna hate me, but my dear viewers will love me, right? Again, I acknowledge that Miyuki doesn’t go to the extreme to help Miko out, but I groaned when he started calling her ideas ridiculous.
— In the end, Miko still loses, but she only lost by 40 votes. She’s also gotten some new fans. Kobachi can’t help but burst into tears, because she’s been silently suffering alongside her friend.
— On the other hand, Kaguya’s mental state is apparently linked to physical well-being. She was obviously worried sick about the results. In front of others, she tries to put on a cool air, but as soon as she can be alone with Ai, the facade instantly crumbles. She’s not even this vulnerable around Miyuki. It goes to show that these two have a special bond…
— …which they have to keep hidden from others at all costs.
— Still, a win is a win, so Miyuki quickly turns his attention to building his team. First and foremost, he extends an invitation to both Miko and Kobachi. The latter isn’t really interested, though.
— Naturally, Chika and Yu will return to their old positions, but they were still worried that he’d find replacements anyway. Kinda silly to me, but okay.
— In the school’s infirmary, Kaguya is finally letting out her frustrations. Everyone has insecurities, but it’s different with this girl. She’s like a tightly-wound ball of insecurities, so when the going gets bad, she just explodes. She worries that Miyuki no longer wants her to be his vice president. She feels as though he is taking her for granted as though she’s an abandoned housewife. She fears that he might have found out about all the underhanded tricks she pulled to secure his victory. Deep down, Kaguya doesn’t actually think that she’s a good person, so she’s very scared that Miyuki will finally see her for who she thinks she really is.
— This isn’t the first time that Ai has dealt with this, so she’s just calmly sitting there with a disinterested look on her face. She knows she just has to let Kaguya rant.
— Eventually, the girl gets to the root of her problem: she doesn’t feel special anymore. In her eyes, Miyuki is just a nice guy who helps everyone. Well, that’s the cue for Miyuki to show up and give Kaguya some special treatment. He invites Miko to join the student council, but he won’t grovel at her feet or anything. With Chika and Yu, he just assumes that they’ll serve under him. It’s not even a concern. But with Kaguya, he utters those three special words that every lover wants to hear. They’re basically already a couple; they’re just both too scared to admit it.
— Still, like I said in a previous post, I appreciate the fact that the main couple in this show doesn’t have to deal with any potential love triangles. No one else is gunning for either Miyuki or Kaguya. They pretty much just have each other.
— In the end, as we all predicted, Miko heads to the student council room to accept Miyuki’s offer. All’s well that ends well.