Toradora! Ep. 11
Episode 11: Oobashi High School Festival - First Part

[Image: toradora11.jpg]

Recap from last time:

Taiga and Ryuuji attempt to scare Minorin, plan back fires on them when Minorin and Yuusaku are scaring Taiga and Ryuuji. Summer vacation is over once they return home.

Key plot points:
  • It's September and the second semester now begins. Haruta Kouji, one of their classmates, interjects the group's reunion outside of the school grounds with a cheery mood after doing many great things during their summer vacation. Their homeroom teacher, Koigakubo Yuri (or Yurichan-sensei), on the other hand, hardly did anything interesting. All work and no play, eh?
  • The school's upcoming culture festival is coming up and preparations are underway, but there's one problem: it has been shortened to only one day. Haruta suggests all the guys vote unanimously for a maid cafe event for their class. This causes all the guys to branch out their ideas until Yuusaku proposes they do a cosplay cafe instead.
  • The following day, the class put in their votes on paper ballots and Haruta, being the "smart" one, doesn't count them but instead does a lottery. Turns out they'll be doing a professional wrestling show.
  • Taiga has been receiving several phone calls over the past few days but never bothers to answer them. It turns out that her father has been calling her and has been wanting to meet her in person to discuss something. She arranges for Ryuuji to meet with the "damned old man" instead after she discovers her bank account has no money in it, and the only source of that money is her father.
  • Ryuuji learns from Taiga's father about Taiga's past and how she didn't approve of his marrying a younger woman as his wife, causing her to move out and live alone in her apartment. Her father is now divorcing and wants to live with Taiga as father and daughter.
  • One day, after school, Taiga and Ryuuji see Taiga's father waiting for them. Taiga kicks him between the legs and calls him a stalker, which angers Ryuuji. He persists and blocks Taiga from entering his home asking why she's acting like this in front of her father. In the midst of their argument, Ryuuji lets slip about how no matter how much he wishes, his father will never come back. This causes Ryuuji to stop holding Taiga and apologize, but she stops him and agrees to talk with her father.

Episode thoughts:

Yeah, this is a three part story arc centered around the culture fest extravaganza that normally would have gone over a few days has been truncated to just one day. The student body president, Sumire, wants this to be the most exciting culture festival event the school has ever seen, since it is her last year. OK, enough with the semi-background summary for this episode, on to the actual thoughts.

OK, so I was right on more screen time with some of the side characters, prominently Haruta. Their homeroom teacher, Yurichan-sensei, on the other hand, is one sad, depressing character. First, she's in her mid-30's, single, and is quite jealous of a 17 year old's carefree can-do-anything life. I pity her, even in the next episode preview she sounds desperate to get married instead of getting birthday presents.

Taiga has been stubborn for pretty much the whole episode up until the last minute or so where it was a touching moment; father and daughter hugging in reunion. Her sudden change of heart/attitude at the end was very unexpected. Turns out that Taiga was the one who abandoned her family, not the story she tells Ryuuji about how her father kicked her out of the house. Interesting turn of events, now there's remains a few questions: the whereabouts of Taiga's mother. Did she separate? Pass away? What will the housing situation be for Taiga now? Will she move away or stay put in her apartment? These questions will linger until answered.

In regards to the "most exciting" culture festival the school will ever see, I agree. If it has the rivalry with the likes of Taiga and Ami, there's certainly going to be some cataclysmic disaster bound to happen. Oh, yes, Sumire, you'll get excitement for your last festival. No doubt about that! By the way, I have suspicions that Yurichan-sensei put in that vote for the professional wrestling show.

[Image: minorinvstakako.jpg]

Minorin, for some reason, has an explosive nose bleed when proposing the class have a haunted house event. She must really love everything about horror, and for some reason, it reminds me of a scene in Kannagi with Takako-senpai and her explosive nose bleed for a different reason.

[Image: preview12.jpg]

Right, part two of three coming up for the Oobashi High School Festival story arc. Nothing much is revealed about what happens in the next episode except, well, Yurichan-sensei eating alone and reminiscing on her life it seems. Well, we're in for a possible eye-opener as there are hardly any hints about what happens next week.
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