Little Busters! ~Refrain~ Episode 5: The Final Task
Well, that escalated quickly.
The final task turned out to be something fairly low-key; I thought it’d be on a larger scale than a simple tour of the school. But it was still nice to see Rin attempt to speak formally to a bunch of people she doesn’t know (and mess up several times along the way!) I can’t believe she even has no idea what Riki’s last name is! Notice that, before the inspection was brought up, Rin and Komari mentioned the absence of Kurugaya, Kud and Mio – it looks like they really are gone, even though their departure seemed rather abstract before.
All right, I suppose I shouldn’t be ignoring the elephant in the room (I was trying to avoid mentioning it till later). I’ve poked at the possibility several times in the past, but it seems that Kyousuke is indeed the person engineering all the messages and tasks. Riki picked up rather quickly that Rin’s growth has essentially been the product of Kyousuke’s manipulation – or rather, it’s almost as if the tasks were designed for the express purpose of facilitating Rin’s growth. Everything leads up to the exchange program Rin’s been sent on – if Riki and Rin had never followed the task’s instructions and volunteered, Rin wouldn’t have been scouted. I’m going to assume this is all for the greater good in the grand scheme of things; even though Kyousuke’s personality took a darker tone this episode, I can’t bring myself to see him that negatively. Making Rin grow up should be a good thing… right? He does seem to know an awful lot about everything though. Riki thinks that reality is “pulled towards” what Kyousuke says, but I don’t think that’s quite right. Instead I’m getting the feeling that Kyousuke already “knows” how reality will play out… but I won’t entirely refute the idea that Kyousuke may have some sort of underlying influence. If he’s significant enough to know the “secret of this world”, he must be more than just a spectator.
Riki was rather heated today; it’s quite uncommon to see him so emotional about things. But I also got the feeling that he took quite a mature outlook on the whole exchange program thing – after realizing it would be beneficial for Rin to go, he decided to put his personal feelings aside. He even went as far as to rile her up over it (“Right now, your girlfriend is very angry!”) Rin-chan, you’re forgetting about Komari’s optimism magic!
Finally, a certain bus accident was mentioned for the first time. While my knowledge of Refrain is rather limited, I’m aware that this bus accident holds a great deal of significance. In particular, hearing that only two students survived does introduce a lot of scope for speculation… but I’d prefer not to extrapolate until we get more pieces of the puzzle.