Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Come wa Machigatteiru Episode 3: Sometimes The God of Romantic Comedies Does Good Deeds.
‘Now look at me. I’m the strongest.’
Summary: During gym class, the teacher asks everyone to pair up for tennis practice. Not having a partner, Hachiman uses a trick he developed to ensure that he can practice by himself against a wall. At lunch, Hachiman eats alone at his favorite spot because of the nice sea breezes that blow in from the shore. He is interrupted by Yui who lost a bet with Yukino to buy drinks and subsequently discuss Yukino’s characteristics. As Yui brings, up what happened on their entrance ceremony, they are both interrupted by Saika Totsuka. Having never paid much attention to anyone in his class, Hachiman is fooled by his androgynous appearance. At gym the following day, Hachiman pairs up with Saika for tennis who asks Hachiman to join the Tennis Club to help raise their strength. Unsure of what to do, Hachiman asks Yukino for advice. Yukino advices Hachiman (using her past bullying as a reference) that if he joins, the club members would unite under the theme of mutually hating him by sacrificing their own improvement hence instead focus all their energies on Hachiman, resulting in a no-win situation for both sides. Just then, Yui shows up with Saika who requests that the club help him practice, which takes a few days with no improvement. At the tennis court during lunch, while the Services Club helps Saika, Yumiko and her posse show up and demand to use the court. Hayato Hayama and Yumiko make a deal with Hachiman and Yui to have a double tennis match with the winner being able to use the court and help Saika practice. As Yumiko and Hayato steadily gain the upper hand, Yui sprains her ankle and leaves for a bit. While Hachiman prepares to throw in the towel, Yui returns with with Yukino as her replacement. After a bit of pregame banter with Yumiko, Yukino steadily dominates the game until her stamina runs low, and entrusts the game to Hachiman. Hachiman uses his knowledge of the sea breeze’s speed and direction (from his time spent eating lunch alone) and is able to win the match, but as Yumiko would have hurt herself from intercepting his final shot, Hayato protects her from colliding with the fence. Thereby drawing the spectator attention to them instead of the Services Club’s victory. At the end, Yukino leaves with Yui while Saika thanks Hachiman, who remarks that the “god of romantic comedies” is a retard for the end pairing which seems homosexual. As Hachiman returns to the club room, he walks in on Yui and Yukino changing. They knock him out with a tennis racquet before Hachiman complements the “god” on his sense of humor.
Oh Hachiman, you are one hell of an interesting character. Hachiman is a breath of fresh air, y’know? He’s the kinda guy I can relate because, well, me and him were kinda similar. I too used to be a pessimist who apathetic nature would sap the life out of those around him. I did not however fall to my knees and beg for forgiveness like a baby… But I’ll get to that later. Episode 3 is all about the introduction of Tosuka and the tennis match between Hachiman and the popular kids. An interesting enough if there ever was one. But back to the point, Hachiman and his dead fish eyes are slowly becoming my favorite part of this show, just like Kyon did in the Haruhi Suzumiya novels (and anime, of course) and Kodaka in Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai. Every character I’ve just listed (along with Hachiman) is interesting and adds something to their own respective shows, whether that be witty inner dialogues or interesting dialogues about the wind, these are the characters that make their shows great! I just hope that when change does occur, Hachiman doesn’t change too much…
Episode 3’s new character is Tosuka, a girl boy. I’ll grudgingly admit that I was thrown by his appearance and my immediate thought was ‘he’s cute’… Shame on me… No before your start imagining any disturbing yaoi between me and this ‘girl boy’, I’d like to point out his feminine appearance and sweet, tender eyes… If it turns out that this Tosuka guy is actually a girl then maybe my manliness may return to me, but until then, I’ve just lost 1000 man points… Take that as you will. Tosuka doesn’t actually get paid much attention in this episode. In fact he gets sidelined almost immediately after his appearance. Admittedly this was because of the tennis match interfering with his seemingly futile training but still! Where are your priorities Oregairu? I joke of course, but I would have liked to have seen more of ‘him’. Actually no – scrap that, the guy’s so ‘cute‘ that whenever I see him I forget that he’s a guy! What a monstrous curse!
Next on my list (and before I forget) did anyone else notice that brief moment when an interesting plot point was indirectly made? I am of course talking about the moment when Yui is talking with Hachiman about the school’s entrance ceremony. Now I’m no expert detective (and this was pretty darn bland), but surely that means an interesting and impending plot point, no? What happened? Hachiman was in a car accident? Are the two events related? What’s going on?!
Now for: ‘Chris’ Review of The Battle of the Babes!’… oh and Hachiman. After the popular kids burst onto the scene (during Tosuka’s training) demanding the right to use the tennis court, Hachiman challenges their authority and takes a stand (for once)! If main male lead jock, Hayama, was in a shoujo, he’d be the popular character who’s all sweet and nice (and did I mention popular?) and then falls in love with your average looking, average woman who, just in case you forgot, is extremely average (I’m having flashbacks to Sukitte Iinayo, or ‘Say I Love You’ for all you english Crunchyroll viewers!)? But I digress, Hayama, who tries to take the indifferent approach, nonchalantly challenges Hachiman to a tennis match for rights to the use of the court. Yui joins team Hachiman and
other blonde girl (yes, that’s the best description I can give! Oh, no, wait – after a quicky Wikipedia search I’ve found out her name is…) Yumiko joins team good looking douche Hayama. They play, drama unfolds and Yui sprains her ankle. Yukino bursts onto the scene to take her place and the Battle of The Babes truly begins. Two hotties battling it out for dominance… tis quite a riveting turn of events, no? Before I continue I’d like to point out that it’s only taken Yukino and Yui three episodes to become friends! Well done you guys! Anyway, Hachiman wins that game and Hayama looks cool in losing. That is all. All throughout the game you change see Hachiman changing, three episodes earlier and he would have never considered helping Tosuka (that is, without being forced to join the Service Club) and now he’s going all out in his attempts to be the hero. Hell, only one episode ago he couldn’t even stand up for Yui, now he’s standing up for Yui, Tosuka and himself! This club thing really works! Anyway, I’m looking forward to seeing just how far Hachiman will change and, for better or for worse, how he’ll end up in a couple episodes time. Good luck Hachiman!
Also, before I end this off, I’d like to share with you my notes after finding out that Tosuka was a boy:
– TOSUKA? A BOY? I WAS DECEIVED!
– HOW CAN I HAVE FALLEN FOR IT?
– DAMNED BOY!
– GAY RELATIONSHIP?
– WHAT’S GOING ON?
…yes. But I digress, twas a good episode indeed. Nice pacing, good music and your above average romcom plot point to boot. One thing I’d like to point out though is that this is in no way the funniest anime I’ve ever seen and yet it’s not totally unfunny (yes that is a word). This show is the epitome of an average romantic comedy and that’s okay, it’s still enjoyable after all! And one other thing, where be the romance? There aren’t even any romantic hints thrown in to make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside (apart from the odd gay one here and there, but, to be honest, that’s not really my thing…)? Ah well, I guess I’m just going to have to wait…
P.S What’s this? A minute amount of fan service?!