Silver Spoon 2 Episode 3: Tsundere Horse

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vlcsnap-2014-01-24-22h47m23s83It’s all about horse-riding at the equestrian club this week, and we see Hachiken struggling with the sport and his partner Maron, even to the point of getting into a fight with Mikage, and later as he visits a horse-riding event with Mikage and her dad at their hometown he finally knows what it means to participate in a sport such as this.

I’m not sure if I said this last week, but this season of Silver Spoon is definitely better than the first in my opinion. The comedy works better, and so does the drama – I believe season 1 was a bit more subtle about the lessons Hachiken was learning during his life at agricultural high school, but season 2’s more direct approach works better for me. It feels a lot more impactful and meaningful, which is definitely what this series has been aiming for right in the beginning.

vlcsnap-2014-01-24-22h48m22s164Silver Spoon’s beauty is that it’s able to mete out some serious life lessons and provide a great introspective into Hachiken’s life as a middle-schooler and how it’s made him who he is, doing so while also educating the audience about Japanese farm life in such a light-hearted, humorous matter. You can only get a really endearing series as a final result.

vlcsnap-2014-01-24-22h51m00s201This week is another typical Silver Spoon episode – we get to know more about Hachiken and his past through his daily life at school  Hachiken goes through the new experience of jumping with his horse during club activities. Everyone is able to do it, everyone except Hachiken himself. And this was pretty hard to watch. It’s already been established last season that Hachiken’s extremely competitive – even if he’s not the best, he needs to at least be on the same level as everyone else. This puts him in a tight spot, he’s under immense stress from being unable to jump with his horse Maron.

vlcsnap-2014-01-24-22h52m43s217The episode does subtly tell the audience what Hachiken is missing for him to be able to make that jump with Maron – trust in the horse that Hachiken is lacking. Seeing Hachiken not being able to see that immediately is one thing, but this super competitive trait of his makes him unable to really think straight, he only knows one way to fix the problem, and that’s to practice till he gets it. This gets him into his (I believe it is the first) argument with Mikage, who’s upset that he’s not thinking for Maron’s well-being and being too absorbed in getting the jumping right. The episode uses parallels to his middle-school times where the same thing happened to Hachiken for a test, and all he could do was study like a madman till he was on par with everyone else.

vlcsnap-2014-01-24-23h04m21s21Of course, after witnessing a little horse-riding event with Mikage (who casually joins the event!) and her Dad (who seems to be implicitly giving his OK for Hachiken to go for Mikage, woo!) he finally gets it – horse-riding is not just about the rider, it’s about the horse as well. The trust you have in the horse to cover for you, to do their best for you even in a tight spot. Yes, horses are admirable animals indeed.

We also get a little time with the others this week, some jokes ensue when Tokiwa can’t get his head out of the gutter about Hachiken and Mikage leaving school together during a weekend, and Beppu being the ‘nice guy’ he is covering for Hachiken who forgot he had cleaning duty. All in the fun of agricultural high school life! Can’t wait for next week.

**Note: I’ve stopped my blogging of Silver Spoon 2. It’s not that the series isn’t great (it is) but watching and blogging this series has felt like a chore to me since episode 3 was released and I still haven’t caught up…the episodes are starting to pile up and it’s not looking pretty…I’m still blogging Samumenco though since that series is a lot easier to write about in terms of actual content as compared to Silver Spoon’s slice of life, and there are more ideas presented in Samurai Flamenco’s writing I’d like to explore in greater detail. Heh.

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