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Well, it’s certainly been a while since we last saw this show, and I probably should have given myself a recap before it aired. To that point, I respect that this first episode didn’t dwell too long on recapping previous seasons. The opening of the episode was a strange detour into some of Chihaya’s life immediately after Arata’s departure, but it quickly returns to the present day. It’s an interesting way to do a recap.
Other than that, the episode is largely a training camp overview. I suppose it’s a fairly chill way to get back into the series. I barely remember where we left off, but I do remember Chihaya’s hand being injured.
I think this was part of the previous seasons as well, but I really like how the episode uses “background” text to make its jokes while the scenes progress. I think it’s a great way of taking advantage of the screen to add to the overall product.
I look forward to seeing how the series plays with this aspect of Taichi, since it’s one that I like. Normally, you’d expect him to play to impress Chihaya, but her presence ends up having the opposite effect. Since they’re on the same team, it creates a cool disconnect.
And back to the actual karuta itself, I liked seeing the episode waste no time with showing Chihaya’s progress. It’s pretty funny that she ends up losing all of her games against someone who is depressed to face her as well. I forget how much of this I’m supposed to be blaming on her injury.
I’m kind of sad that this match gets cut off in the end. The episode clearly seemed to be setting it up. Maybe it’s another thing to chalk up to the injury, but I still would have liked to see it.