It was always going to be hard for this episode to live up to a preview that consisted of Kud saying “I AM A JAPANESE STUPID”, but on the whole I think this one did pretty well.
this smirk has something to do with that) and goes about doing exactly what it promises. It’s an absurdly simple series in terms of theme – friendship is good. Observe the Golden Rule. Mean people exist – screw them. It delivers angst and drama, for certain, but almost entirely lacking in irony. I love irony as much as the next guy, but there’s something about this direct approach that’s really refreshing.
writes cogent notes (in Russian) in the margins of her quantum physics texts. She just happens, as Riki sagely observes, to be “good at complicated things and bad at simple things.” She gets nervous and flustered easily, which leads to mistakes on exams. “I have trouble filling in those little bubbles” as she says herself – and in an age of standardized tests, this is a real problem. Given that these are the Little Busters, what else can they possibly do but all pitch in to help her prepare for the next national placement exam?
girls who mock the “cute little quarter-Japanese” who can’t read English properly and gets flustered every time she speaks publicly. I’ve noticed that it’s the girls in Little Busters who tend to be the really nasty characters, for what it’s worth, and the three who come to gawk at Kud and mock her as she’s studying for her exams really set the blood to boil. Needless to say I knew plenty of people like that in high school – I imagine we all did (or do) – but here’s the thing: wouldn’t it have been great to have a group of friends like Kud has? People who are always around when the assholes pick on you or when things generally so bad, and who never judge you – only support you unconditionally and help you solve your problems? Again, absurdly simple, and there’s possibly an element of wish fulfillment here, but I think that’s a big part of the reason so many find LB to be an appealing story.
Haruka presents herself to the rest of the group during Mio’s physics lesson and offers up a lame string of gags. Mio stares ahead impassively, wordless, then continues her lecture without a word of acknowledgement. These two are quite like a Manzai team – that Manzai theme tends to run through a lot of the humor in LB, with Riki as the tsukkomi. I also loved Haruka’s “Hey, hey, Girls!” (in English) entrance later in the ep – and the other interesting development was that it seems as if her reconciliation with Kanata has taken hold. In fact with her sister’s tutoring she manages to get an 85% on the tests – but when poor Kud flunks out after (yet again) putting her answers in the wrong column, Haruka pretends she flunked too so she’ll have to take remedial classes with Kud. Of course when the moment comes it isn’t just Haruka, but every member of the Little Busters who’s there in that classroom for Kud – a development that on some shows might have seemed overly sentimental, but on this one was really the only believable outcome.