“Scrambling and Dripping”
What They Say:
This country girl is ready for the big city! Well, at least she thought she was. Mitsumi’s dream is to attend a prestigious school and make the world a better place. But when she finally gets to Tokyo, it turns out she isn’t exactly prepared for city life. Luckily, she runs into Shima, a sweet and handsome classmate who becomes her first friend! Can she make it in Tokyo with Shima by her side?
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The series did something quite wonderful the last time around in giving Mitsumi a chance to head back home for about half of it and to just engage with her friends. And it wasn’t something where she felt out of place after being in Tokyo nor did she just go on constantly about Tokyo to her friends. She slid back into her life there pretty easily and it was engaging to see her with longtime friends and just being who she is, which actually felt a bit more mellow than how we often see her. Getting back into the swing of things later in the episode, this one pushes us toward the school festival side of things and that means Mitsumi is quite busy. She’s got a lot on her plate in general but as part of the student council she has to deal with the bigger picture, which means missing out on some of what her class in particular are doing. It’s a nice bit of wistfulness but it also highlights the sacrifices she has to make in her quest for public service and advancement.
This becomes somewhat complicated for Shima because he knows he can’t get out of performing a little bit for this. He’s trying to have as normal a time as he can in high school but even he knows this is one thing he can’t avoid. He’s doing his best to minimize it outside of school, such as making sure Ririka doesn’t find out, but it’s good to see how he deals with this and how it makes him feel – and that he has people to talk to about it a little. Watching that and seeing the class getting to work on costumes, sets, and other elements is pretty fun in a standard kind of way. But as we get the presentation of the performance in a kind of dream-like way as we view it, it’s really enjoyable to watch Shima sing and perform and how it all comes together. It’s a supportive environment though there’s an air of jealousy that comes into it as well, such as how Mika keeps trying to process things through that lens.
We also see how Mitsumi is doing her best with a lot of this and working hard to both help and to experience, but we also see how she can end up making mistakes along the way and overhear some mild criticism that eats at her a bit. And some of this draws memories for Shima and his recognizing that has him doing what he can to at least be present for her instead of just trying to do things for her, which is a nice change of pace. We get something really special here as the two talk and she realizes, at least in her view, that she’s done so much of this for herself instead of the class. And that has him wondering if she’s really cut out for Tokyo life and politics. If he gets to see her in her home area, it’s going to reinforce that to be sure. It’s just so nice to see two people actually talk and think about things with meaning and understanding rather than just constant misunderstandings and drawn-out repetition.
Skip and Loafer again showcases some of the best scripting and character work of the season with a pretty simple episode. You expect it to be a lot of the usual school festival stuff, and we’ve seen so much of that over the years, that by just placing it in the background and focusing on the characters you get something far more engaging with it. The way we hear Shima’s thoughts and understand him more while also seeing how Mitsumi tries hard but doesn’t always succeed – and questions what her actual motivations are – helps to give it all a richness that you wish was a baseline for shows like this. And don’t close the window early – there’s a brief post-credits scene this time around too!
Streamed By: Crunchyroll