Free! Eternal Summer Episode 13 [FINAL]
Eva’s Final Impression
Free! Eternal Summer has finally come to an end…
Now where should I begin?
God this was hard to write up.
Frankly speaking, while I did enjoy the finale (oh the feels!), I couldn’t help but have some… okay a lot of mixed opinions. But because I am confused about my own thoughts (it’s been over an hour and it’s hurting my head now) that I am just going to keep it simple.
Let’s start with the good points. It was ridiculously adorable how flustered and shy Haruka was when he and Rin were greeted by Makoto at the airport, as well as when he had apologized to him for lashing out. It was their first real fight- which you have to say is pretty impressive after how long they have known each other, so Haruka couldn’t help but feel awkward, especially when he felt he was the one at fault. After they had apologized to each other Makoto revealed his reason for choosing to go to Tokyo University. Like Haruka, he too didn’t have a dream earlier on, but after teaching the kids how to swim made him want to walk down that path.
Haruka reveals his new found dream to his friends (and the audience) and takes the time to explain how his trip to Australia had opened his eyes. His dream is to also step onto the World Stage, not necessarily for the sake of competing, but for the sake of being able to continue to swim for himself, so he will start caring about his times and winning.
Now this is where things get complicated and where I have a lot of mixed opinions. Last week I had seen a lot of people concerned and not happy about the direction they were taking Haruka. I can tell you I was one of those people. From very beginning of the series and throughout this season, I had a very difficult time accepting the idea that Haruka’s dream was to swim in the World Stage. I always felt it was never part of his character to go down that path. But unfortunately for some, he did. However while watching it unfold I didn’t feel as frustrated as I thought I would be. I don’t know if it was the atmosphere of the episode that served as a ward to prevent my negative thoughts from ruining the moments. Not going to lie though, it’s still plaguing my head and I don’t know really know how I feel about it, so that’s why I can’t really explain it. I might just be over-thinking things though…
In the end, both Makoto and Haruka are attending Tokyo University and live next door to each other (kind of surprised they didn’t just room up though). It made be very happy that they ended up sticking together even though they are walking down their own individual paths. As for Nagisa and Rei, they have successfully managed to recruit new members to the Swimming Club to carrying on their legacy. I am sure by making it to the Nationals served as a vital key of motivation for new ambitious members.
I was a bit disappointed that we didn’t get to see the final relay, but the way they executed was nice to watch too. It was clear that relay was all about them swimming one last time as a team. They had ended up 6th Place in the Nationals (which is pretty darn good considering how far they have come, especially Rei- major props to him!).
Free! Eternal Summer was a fun and emotional ride, Kyoto Animation did a stunning job like it had with the first season. I think this season more a bit more emotional and a lot of people could connect to the struggles the characters were going through. With the end card entitled, “For the Future” it makes you wonder what we will see next. I don’t necessarily believe there will be a third season, frankly speaking I think it’s better off wrapping up the series here, but I do see a potential OVA in the future of their Post-Graduation life and see Rin and Haruka compete on the World Stage (something I am sure fans have the burning need for).