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I think this ending was satisfying overall. It didn’t feel like it was trying to overreach, and it seemed to cover the missing pieces that I was hoping would be addressed. When I say it didn’t overreach, I mean that I was happy to see the story avoided going through unnecessary hoops to force a happy ending. The bittersweet ending worked out for me.
The episode opened with Yuito looking back on his days with Hitomi with a sense of longing. Honestly, part of me wondered whether this tone was meant to convince the audience that something went wrong in the time magic spell (even if it would have made no sense at all in the context of the show).
All in all, I do like the idea of not getting in your own way, as Hitomi says. At least, that was my understanding of the ultimate theme of the show.
It was nice to see Hitomi sharing her final moments with Yuito before returning to the future. I like that the memories were shown in black and white as Hitomi goes through them. It could just be because the world was black and white at the time, but that’s a less meaningful interpretation in my eyes.
It is a bit of a bummer that Kohaku ends on a low after Hitomi leaves, as she realizes that Hitomi’s magic was what sent her back. I guess it makes sense that Kohaku wouldn’t be able to figure it out so quickly, but it definitely raises some questions for me about Kohaku’s relationship with her daughter. I wonder if she might have gotten too obsessed with her granddaughter, and forced her daughter to suffer as a result.
Well, I can’t say I’m surprised to find out that Kohaku knew what would happen before sending Hitomi back. It does definitely call into question how time magic really works, but I could probably speculate forever about that.
It was kind of sad that Hitomi didn’t get to reconnect with her older friends in the future, but this scene in particular has me interested. Given the immediate context, the quick assumption would be that Hitomi is visiting her mother’s grave. However, that doesn’t really make sense, since she wanted to go see her mother with Kohaku. In that case, I would think it’s most likely that this is actually Yuito’s grave, which explains why there isn’t a tearful reunion.
As I said, it would have been nice to see more of the other characters, but this is a solid ending for Hitomi herself. Also, the bookstore owner is confirmed as Kohaku’s husband, maybe?
Final Score: 8/10
Looked great, and the show had the kind of subtlety that I tend to like. I think many of the side characters get heavily pushed aside, but I did like watching Hitomi’s progress as a character.