Lifting the weight of your secrets will set you free
What They Say:
After the heavy year-end workload (and a few sick days) Goto, Hime, and Roku have earned themselves a vacation. But being both a manga artist and a man with a secret, Goto-sensei knows that hot springs are a hotbed for mischief and mayhem. Unfortunately for Goto-sensei, his vacation getaway will be anything but relaxing.
Content (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
With January approaching, Goto and his staff prepare to kick things into overdrive! For the sake of time-off, they’ll complete their manuscripts early!! But that’s easier said than done. Goto is a mangaka after all – his inner-slacker is not motivated to complete extra pages. And that’s where Hime comes in. Our father-daughter duo happen upon a street-side lottery where Hime pulls the grand prize – a trip for 3 to the hot springs of Izu (pets allowed!) Suddenly, Goto-sensei is bursting with energy and determination! The manuscripts get completed just as he intended (all Goto needed was a little Hime magic).
And right on cue, here comes Tomaruin to spoil the fun. As Goto hands in his manuscripts, Tomaruin sneakily mentions his upcoming trip to Hawaii. Goto proceeds to rant about the unfortunate circumstances of what a mangaka’s vacation is like. A mangaka must be ready in-case the manuscripts get lost or the publisher wants something fixed, meaning their vacation must be short, cheap and close-by. In a nutshell, a mangaka’s work is never done. But measly vacations aren’t what mangaka’s fear most come January. The real detriment comes in the form of year-end sickness. They say a year’s worth of sickness will hit a mangaka as soon as they get time-off, and that’s exactly what happens to Goto-sensei. Luckily for Goto, his assistants (as well as his harem of potential waifus) stick by his side, showering him in prayers, sutras and comic relief.
Goto makes a speedy recovery and so he, Hime and Roku head for the Izu hot springs. But anyone familiar with manga and anime know that hot springs are a chaotic place. Worried about encountering a public bath fiasco, Goto recruits his assistants Rasuna and Ami to watch over Hime. Before Goto can even finish thinking about the different hot spring scenarios, Hime is in-and-out without any trouble. But this would be the least of his worries. Aside from lewd public bath moments, hot springs hold another power over people. A hot spring is filled with many secrets, and the people who attend have plenty secrets of their own. While eating dinner at the inn, the patrons surrounding Goto and Hime have reached their breaking points. Suddenly the flood gates open and everyone in the room starts divulging their secrets. But rather than turning people against each other, it brings them closer together. The atmosphere becomes light and airy as everyone is freed from the burden of their secrets. But just as Goto is being peer-pressured to reveal his own secrets, the inn’s ghostly mysteries begin to unravel on their own. It’s tragic that Goto has been given chance after chance to free himself from his secret life and yet he fails to see the relief it brings people to come clean.
As you might come to imagine, the inn’s secret is tied to a spooky story. A famous bungo (or classical Japanese writer) coughed up blood while writing at this inn and died on his way to the hospital. As Rasuna and Ami research the ghostly bungo, they make an interesting insight. It is often difficult for people to separate an artist from their personal lives. In the case of an old-timey writer, their eccentricities and dramatic stories might elevate their popularity amongst readers. But as Rasuna points out, the same can’t be said for a gag manga artist. If a tragic secret were to be revealed about their personal lives, it would have the opposite effect. How could you laugh at a gag manga when you know the cold truth behind the scenes? As for the artist, how could you continue writing for laughs if the façade of comedy was your escape from that tragic event? Rasuna’s comment would come to be a premonition in the future timeline.
Until now, the future scenes have moved at a snail’s pace, but this time around we get some new information on Goto’s disappearance. Apparently Goto’s wife was involved in a boating accident where she was lost at sea. Once the news had gone public, Goto-sensei lost his will to draw. He believed he could no longer make people laugh with his manga. Apparently Hime is still uncertain as to why her father stopped drawing manga. Now the question was, how much does Hime still not know? If she doesn’t know why Goto quit, is she unaware of what happened to her mother as well? After giving up on his manga, where is Goto-sensei? How deep to the layers of secrecy go?
With only two episodes remaining, and the manga’s final volume releasing the same time as episode 12, Kakushi Goto’s secret is on the verge of being revealed! I really hope there’s a silver lining for Goto and Hime, but we’ll have to wait and see.
Streamed By: Funimation