Oregairu 2 – Ep 5 Review: A Pyrrhic Victory?

He's going the distance. He's going for speed

He’s going the distance. He’s going for speed

Hachiman really went the distance this time around. He’s certainly showing his growth, given the circumstances of the previous episodes. His island mentality has come to bite him and he realizes that he can’t keep pushing people away the way he does. Hence, making up with Komachi and exchanging apologies. It’s an all new 8man folks!

The cool thing about this episode is that it was a much more lighthearted, fulfilling episode. With 8man’s interactions with his sister and school acquaintances. I suppose we can’t quite say ‘friends’ just yet. Hearing Saki say she’d nominate him for Student Council President was subtle, but it shows people’s faith in him, even if he chooses not to acknowledge it.

Of course, 8man’s as underhanded as ever, employing his blatantly Twitter nominations gambit for Iroha. Very risky, considering this is the internet and the evidence can be easily found. Not that I think anyone in that school is smart enough to look into it, haha. That said, his actions were more mild than usual, and he had the backup of his sister, Zaimokusa and Totsuka too. All in all, he accomplished his goal right? Well…

It seems that what’s eating Yukinon is above and beyond simply 8man’s actions in isolation. Many, myself included, were puzzled by her reaction in this episode, making it seem like either she wanted to become the Student Council President or she wasn’t happy with how 8man handled the situation. Yui on the other hand was honest with her feelings of wanting the club to stay together and was encouraged to see 8man do something about it. It’s always impressive how forthcoming she is, especially with her comments regarding how things will ‘go back to normal’ and it’s hard for 8man to get over the guilt of the things he’s done. Even she realizes that it’s hard for him to break out of his ways.

Your princess is in another castle

Your princess is in another castle

You might say that this was a Pyrrhic victory. The gains might not justify the fallout. 8man rallied the troops, stormed the castle gates and fought back the enemy. This was no longer solo assassin 8man, but shining knight commander 8man with the support of his sister and friends. Except, once the battle was done, the princess was nowhere to be found. And the knight can’t help but feel that he lost the war.

Yukinon’s a tough nut to crack this season. Before, you could see their development together and it was cool how they backed each other up. Now, we’re finding that the most difficult one has been Yukinon all along, perhaps more stubborn than 8man himself. Maybe it was Haruna’s comments in the cafe that led her down this path? 8man may have seemed to do it for the sake of the club, or on Komachi’s request, but it’s easy to tell he wanted to make things right with Yukinon. Yet somehow, it looks like he’s made things worse. Fella just can’t catch a break huh?

Well, that’s all I thought about this episode. Can’t wait till next week!

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