I’ll be honest – I could spend a lot of time complaining about why this final episode of HanaIro being such a good one fills me with regrets about what might have been. But I won’t – instead, let’s celebrate the fact that the series ended on a lovely elegiac note, striking just the right tone and hitting some real emotional home runs without trying too hard.
Neener neener neener.
On the other hand, I’m pleased that their romance was not the primary focus of the finale, but rather handled in a very understated way. This isn’t a romance series and never was, and what’s more, I’d argue that in the end the series wasn’t really about Ohana at all. No, I think we were sold a bill of goods, and it was really Sui who was the main character. And since the moments when she was at the center of the action were generally among the best the series had to offer, that’s fine. In a way, she was the one constant that ran through the show and she provided all the best emotional moments of the finale. I loved the scene where she walked through the Kissuiso saying goodbye to the empty rooms, and I loved the scene where she ran into Ohana who had “missed” her train, and broke down at last. Ohana is the granddaughter who it turns out is so much like her, after all. When she told Ohana she’d be waiting for her when she returned, I suspect in Sui’s mind she was thinking of the way her dear husband was waiting for her at the Kissuiso.
|They crossed the streams!|
I’m truly glad things ended on a high note with HanaIro. This was a finale of subtlety, grace and restraint, and it left all the characters in a believable place. It took a lot of patience to get to this point as a viewer, but I’m glad my lasting memories of the series will be mostly positive because of the way it concluded its business.