It’s been almost two months since the last episode of Oreimo. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been itching to see how it all wraps up. The final three episodes were recently released on Crunchyroll simultaneously, lets dive into episode 14, shall we?
Episode 14: “I Can’t Confess to Her” – Watch on Crunchyroll
The episode opens with a quick flashback to Ayase’s rejection after confessing her feelings to Kyousuke. This actually serves more as a hint at what is to come than a recap of what’s already happened, and honestly, I would have liked more of a recap – it’s been nearly two months! Of course, I quickly disregarded this while being treated to new scenes showing Kyousuke and Ruri when they were still dating. Now, I’ll make it clear at this point that when it comes to the different pairings in Oreimo, I’m very much in the Ruri camp (though I wouldn’t mind a Manami end, either) so naturally, seeing the two of them happy together made me smile. Unfortunately it didn’t take me long to figure out what was coming next, you probably did too, and I knew I wouldn’t like it…
Cue some good old Rain of Depression. This scene was hard to watch, and I say that as someone who almost never gets emotional watching television; anime or otherwise. Regardless of which female character you’re routing for in this series, watching Ruri rip her “Destiny Record” journal to shreds, watching tears fill her eyes and hearing her scream in pain… couldn’t be anything but utterly depressing. The whole scene felt that little bit more believable thanks to a great performance by Kana Hanazawa. I doubt I’ll forget the sound of that scream any time soon.
It would be easy to hate Kyousuke’s guts at this point, but we need to remember something; Ruri is the one who dumped him earlier in the series. Maybe not the smartest move, regardless of her true intentions. She knew she was tempting fate by throwing Kyousuke into the comforting arms of his sister, but she did it anyway.
Unfortunately that dark, rainy scene stayed with me for the rest of the episode, making it hard to commit to focusing on and enjoying the remainder. The material isn’t at fault here, it’s the pacing. What would have made a strong end to an episode instead made a bad mid-point, I think.
We saw at the beginning of the episode that Kyousuke had been doing some serious thinking, and he wastes no time in executing his plan. Why should you go out with your brother on Christmas, Kirino?
Because he loves you. Because couples get great deals on Otaku goods, of course! If nothing else, we can at least applaud Kyousuke on his practically flawless plan. How could Kirino pass up on a “Christmas Exclusive Edition Slightly Naughty Seiya-san Figure”?
Typical hilarity ensues, of course. Most notably the two of them bump into fellow Otaku-siblings Kouhei and Sena Akagi, also posing as a couple to get discounts. This middle portion of the episode feels more like standard Oreimo affair, unfortunately I was still thinking about that Ruri scene from earlier. It’s hard to appreciate the comedy in a rom-com when all you can think about is the romance.
So here’s where things get interesting again and the episode regains my full attention; suddenly Kyousuke begins to confess to Kirino. Wait… already? In the first of three episodes? I mean, I guess if you’re going to confess, doing it at the end of your Tokyo-Christmas-Date is as good a time as any… but there are still two episodes left! I was expecting the confession to be the big finish, the grand finale, the shocking (or not so shocking) bombshell ending.
Of course, Kirino isn’t going to make it so easy for him. Right before he reveals the name of the girl he loves… she bails. I could probably harp on about how Saori randomly making amends with her older sister off-screen to facilitate the following car-chase was incredibly convenient and unlikely, but you know what? I’m glad they went with that, because otherwise Kyousuke would’ve had to catch Kirino on foot — likely through “the power of love” or pure will-power or something equally asinine — when there’s no way he’d be able to. Kirino is a track and field prodigy. Kyousuke’s not exactly an athlete.
He finally does catch her of course, and what was originally a serious confession turns into a public shouting match.
What just happened? Did that really just happen? So I guess Oreimo is going full steam ahead down the incest route after all…
What did you think of the episode?