Little Busters! ~Refrain~ Episode 3: Dream
Using the term “time loop” didn’t turn out to be so accurate after all! While the date technically remained the same, different things happened each day; it looks like no June 20th was exactly the same. The fireworks show happened half a month ago (how many of these things has Riki gone through?!) and the rain eventually progressed to snow. Everyone acted like snow in June was normal, and that was when I started doubting the legitimacy of the world he was in. Oh, and watching Kengo gently help Masato with his work was quite weird, too.
My suspicion of Kyousuke turned out to be far off the mark – it looks like the perpetrator was Kurugaya instead. She interpreted Riki’s wish to let his “peaceful days last forever” rather literally, and in tune with her own wish, she constructed this dream world in which June 20th would never end. It seems like, apart from Kurugaya, Riki was the only other person there who existed. While Kurugaya’s arc as a whole seemed very fast paced, it looks like JC Staff decided to cut the romance after all – which was the right decision, I think. The drama was even better without it; an abrupt romance would have devalued her arc. And of course, it would have been at odds with the new arc beginning next week, which will hopefully advocate Riki x Rin.
As someone who hasn’t read the VN, I must admit to feeling quite lost and confused – I feel I’d have been more in tune with the feels had I known more about what was actually happening. How was Kurugaya’s wish granted? Why has Riki forgotten everything? Is Kurugaya really gone for good? What did she mean by protecting Rin? Presumably the “fated day” is the day of the tragedy, and I have a feeling I’m only going to get the answers to these at the end of Refrain. After building up all this hype, it’d better be good.
I’ve also heard this is slated for just 13 episodes, as opposed to the 26 I was expecting. I hope that’s not going to compromise anything – Refrain’s done pretty well for itself, and the last thing I want is for it to crash and burn. Right now, it almost feels like JC Staff are slowly washing away all their past sins! In particular, their offering of a loli Kurugaya is satisfying indeed xD