Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei Bu Happy Kiss! – Episode 11
“You can’t make people happy with magic.”
This line struck me as oddly powerful. So many of the ‘Monster of the week’ characters problems have been so miniscule that a small pep talk and a bit of magic have cleared them up in mere minutes. Only the ones pushed into rage by force posed any kind of threat or really fought against the defense club in a meaningful way.
So when they attempt to deal with Ata in the same way, they are shown that it’s not always that simple. That peoples grudges and unhappiness are not always something silly that a few words can fix.
What has always worked for me with Happy Kiss, and what worked in season 2 was that the villain and the central conflict revolve around the ‘main‘ character.
Ata’s problems deeply stim from their childhood. Where, with little to no effort Kyōtarō would outshine him in everything. Even if he put in a lot of effort, Kyōtarō was always doing things and gaining praise from everyone without much effort. Still, they were friends. The inciting incident, the one thing that confirmed the bitterness and hate in his own heart was honestly a misunderstanding, Something that could happen to anyone, in particular when you’re kids.
They were playing in the dirt and got super dirty, so they acknowledged that they need a bath. When they are approached by the original members of the defense club, Yumoto takes a picture of Kyōtarō, Ata and Ryoma having fun together and gives them each a copy of it and then tells them to come visit the bath so they can get clean. The three kids go to the bath and while Kyōtarō and Ryoma jump right in. Ata is slightly shy and holds back, he’s never been to a public bath before and was just looking for support from his friends but they ran on in without him.
He got upset and left, never knowing that they did leave the bath to come look for him.
Kyōtarō holds his ground in the fight against Ata and lets himself get attacked, over and over, baring the brunt of his ex-friends feelings because he knows he hurt his friend, now matter how unintentionally. Ata waited for ten years to hear Kyōtarō ask him to come to the bath again.
He’s overflowing with anger and sadness and Kyōtarō approaches him and says, even though it’s 10 years too late…that he wants to take a bath together with Ata.
The mask breaks and Ata is brought back to reality. They go to take a moment, shake hands and mend the fracture between their friendship at last. My ship is sailing…
When they are interrupted by a important message from Funari and Karls father. Someone has invaded their home planet and he’s in mortal danger and needs the help of his sons. Both of the sons are clearly worried, but Karls becomes very upset and begins crying.
Kyōtarō talks to him and reminds him that he is always the one that was already super happy. That wanted to bring happiness to earth and he needs to be happy himself. Besides, they are the Karls Knights. They will go and help him save his father and home planet.
They step into the circle that was sent and teleport themselves off to Karls home planet. Leaving Ata without the handshake, leaving the feelings resolved…but still slightly off.
I loved a lot of things in this episode. The backstory between Ryoma, Ata and Kyōtarō was wonderfully interesting. It also paints a joke earlier in the series in a new light. When asked about why they took baths every day they said “Tradition I guess.” which I thought at the time was a joke at the show and the fact that it’s been a thing since the first season. While this could still be a reference, it also has plot relevance now.
I loved that we got to see even the vague shadows of the original group, it also gives us a time frame of when this takes place compared to the original series. The random Masa Jojo reference got a huge chuckle out of me.
I enjoyed the interactions between Unazuki and Wakura as always, as the two of them just idly accept that this is the way that things have to be. Even if they don’t fully understand it. There is no reason for them to be fighting, and they acknowledge this, but fight anyway.
The casual mention that Taichi used to be a delinquent is honestly pretty interesting and I kind of wish we would have more time to flesh it out.
The one thing I didn’t like was the fact that Ata’s resolution did end unfinished. I do not mind the direction of the final episode and I fully hope that Funari and the Student council come to help fight whatever danger is threatening Karls and Funari’s home planet.
Much like the student council from the original series joined with the defense club to fight in the original season. I desire to see this union again and maybe, just maybe, see Ata and Kyōtarō take that bath together.