After seeing her in the opening theme since episode one, even seeing her the most in the flash forward in the first episode, Mao finally appears. But, besides this new character appearing, there is certainly more going on. Either way, let’s get started.

The Plot:

With how the previous episode ended with Ikaruga, finding out Hina lost her ball, well, she decides to call up Mao. Although she is shy, she is still very capable. So, she wants her to bring back a spare ball so Hina can return home. However, complications occur when Mao pops out of her case. Both balls pop into the air, land in the ocean to never be seen again. Thus, stranding Mao on an island.

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So, after spending ten days looking for the balls, Mao turns it around and focus more on surviving. Even though her psychic powers make everything else, there are still some issues, the loneliness that isolation brings. She creates a fake Hina and Anzu out of coconuts to talk to so she can keep herself sane.

This works for some time, feeding them, or at least playing out that she feeds them, and having their heads move with her psychic powers. But, after a little more than two months on the island, she gives up, she needs to see real people. She discards her coconut friends and builds a raft to escape, but not to Japan.

With that part of the episode down the rest follows Nitta, and a little bit of Hina too. Nitta is with his subordinate going to pick up his “brother,” who he does not having the loving relationship with. That scar that is seen on Nitta’s face all the time, well, there is some back story too. He forgot to light his brother’s cigarette and got smacked by an ashtray.

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Anyway, his brother would like to see the boss. Since, well the boss is in a coma. It turns out Hina pointed out his old person smell. Which, she had to say right before he was about to pick the next successor. Yeah, he was in full grandpa mode to cause that coma.

But anyway, Nitta is tasked by the Lieutenant to help gain support for him to be the next head. Of course, Nitta is then tasked by his old brother to also help gain support to be the next head. Nitta was certainly playing peacekeeper this time around.

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The Oldman then wakes up, and Hina goes with Nitta so she could apologize. One thing lead to another, and the Oldman quickly nominates Nitta to be the next head, due to Hina. Then Nitta’s subordinate lets this slip which causes the other two that Nitta was helping to be less peaceful about this situation. The Oldman even changes his mind, since he quickly blurted that answer due to HIna.

Nitta wakes up in a vat of concrete. But, after nearly getting the axe, the Oldman shows up and clears up the situation. Nitta at least becomes the next Lieutenant, but really, he doesn’t care seeing the fact he was not only nearly killed, but the fact that everyone around his is cheering but doing nothing to set him free.

Onto the final part of this episode. Hina would like to celebrate this new promotion. She asks around, and ultimately decides to do everything everyone told her. Including telling Nitta, even though she was going to surprise him.

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She runs out of money rather quickly and improvises the rest. Like, putting water in a beer bottle. Or instead of a cake, just having salt with a candle in it. There is plenty more too.

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Nitta gets home, and it looks more like a funeral then a party. Still, Hina surprises him, and he does respond with a genuine thanks to end the episode.

Overall Thoughts:

A lot to say about this episode. This was a really good episode. For starters Mao’s half. I can start to see why they waited so long to introduce her, since her reasoning for appearing took this long. I am glad they did not try to make a full episode or even make her appear every now and again being on the island, since it really feels like not much could happen. It wasn’t anything funny, it was more of a somewhat serious situation, but still an introduction to the character to get an idea of who she is. It worked rather well. While, we did learn she is reliable and shy from Ikaruga, well, she certainly does come off as that, at least the more reliable aspect. She wants to be with people, and because she is alone for all this part of the episode, it is hard to say if her shyness will go away once she meets others. Still, it does feel like we will see her a bit more, seeing that one, there are only three more episodes after this, and two, we have no idea how she went from being started on an island to being a kungfu action star like in episode one.

Now, the other half with Nitta, well, while, some parts were funny, it was nice to see the situation played out. I did have a feeling that Nitta was going to be deemed the leader because of something Hina said around the current one. But, honestly, I thought the Oldman would have changed his mind when Nitta was in the vat. To me it would have made sense. The others were quick to turn on one of their own, but Nitta was playing peacekeeper within the organization. At least, this part leader wise, it would make sense. Of course, we only get a glimpse of what he does, so, whatever. Regardless, this part had some good buildup, and played through it well with the ending.

As for the final short part. It felt lackluster at first. But, it again, all relates back to Hina and Nitta’s relationship. Hina wants to make Nitta happy. She asks a lot of people, and seems to be not so lazy about the situation, even her effort to compensate in other ways when she ran out of money was something not really seen from Hina. Then, again, it comes full circle with Nitta’s response. He is actually happy, and glad Hina did this, even if it is not the greatest, he really cares for her. His reaction in this way shows how much he has changed to even how he was at the end of last episode celebrating when he thought Hina was gone. It was a nice change, and certainly shows more than ever how much these two mean to one another. It was a nice way to end off the episode.

Overall Enjoyment: 99/100

Overall Score: A

Crunchyroll has licensed this series for streaming, with Funimation planning a dub.

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– Joe

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