Gotta get that stereotypical beach scene in, right?
Episode 3 was the best episode that has aired so far. However, I want to first talk about something that irritated me a lot this time around. The second female lead’s character is written disappointingly. She and Chiaki were in a relationship back in the day, before she suddenly left him to study music in Boston. Now she’s back in Japan, willing to drop her goal and to pursue Chiaki again. Even though these types of plotlines are nothing new in dramaland, it’s not this same-old conflict that bothers me. I don’t mind if a drama rehashes a hackneyed troupe, so long as it’s done well. The problem here is that it’s not done well. She’s simply written in a flat, one-dimensional manner. Instead of directly confronting Chiaki regarding the possibility of getting back together again, she goes to Misaki offering a proposal to be her friend, complete with the bribe of a friendship bracelet. It is only after Misaki accepts the present that she says she likes Chiaki, putting Misaki in a difficult position to confess. The writers give us no reason to root for the second female lead, which is unfortunate. I might address this whole issue of second leads being shoved to a side character-development-wise by writers in a separate post sometime.
Chiaki is an interesting character, because so far it’s debatable whether or not he still harbors feelings for the second lead or if he genuinely likes Misaki. For instance, when the second female lead tells him that she might want to be his girlfriend again, he says no– but then adds another phrase. He asks her didn’t she have a goal, a goal she wanted to achieve so much that she left him earlier to study music in Boston? He could yet again be sacrificing for her wishes so that she can reach her aspirations. Then, on the date with Misaki, he mutters to himself that maybe he was the only one having fun. Although Misaki hears this and smiles to herself, glad that Chiaki enjoyed the date, it’s actually unclear if Chiaki said this statement with Misaki or the second female lead in mind. Perhaps he was reminiscing back to the days when he was still dating second female lead, wondering if he was the only one passionate about their relationship.
Overall Episode 3 was surprisingly good, especially with Kanata encouraging Misaki to not give up her pursuits to let another rival win. Will be waiting for the next episode.