Recaps for Chihayafuru

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Chihayafuru 2 Episode #25 Anime Review

With Arata having made his victory, things are definitely in a kind of interesting state right from the get go. He’s pleased, but not cocky or over exuberant, which is nice to see. He’s pleased to see how far Taichi had gotten and has just a whole lot of positive vibes coming from there, and eeven Taichi can see himself as being pleased for Arata even after all that has been said and done. But once Chihaya gets into the mix, tensions seem to ramp up since she’s still just in such awe of his skill and ability that the calmness of him is unnerving. And like usual, Chihaya retreats into herself in her own way in trying to figure out what it is she’s feeling and why everything suddenly seems off after her losses. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #24 Anime Review

As exciting as the team matches were at times, there’s been a whole lot more excitement and tension coming from the individual matches as they’ve gone on. Where we saw mostly material involving Chihaya during the team matches and the way she was coping with her skill deficiencies and other problems along the way, including hurting herself, the individual match has felt like it’s had a lot more tension because of what Shinobu brought to the game and put Chihaya through but also because of the way Taichi has really shined here and shown his skill. His becoming a Class A player is a fantastic moment, especially now that Chihaya can view him as a rival, which throws an amusing kind of cold water on the way he really does feel about her. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #23 Anime Review

Chihayafuru had a pretty good run in the last episode as it focused on the match between Chihaya and Shonobu, but while that had some very intense moments and twists about it, it also ended by providing for a surprisingly strong piece involving Taichi. He’s definitely played second fiddle for a lot of this season, frustratingly so at times, after what had seemed like a potentially stronger start as he worked with Chihaya to get the team going and reinforce his level of participation with the new students in guiding them. All while growing as a player himself. But he got sidelined along the way with some subtext storyline material involving Arata and the evident feelings he still has for Chihaya, and that just kept him locked mostly in a romantic triangle plot that won’t get resolved any time soon. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #22 Anime Review

As the season gets closer to its end, you know things are going to pick up in a really tense way. The third round of the individual tournament alone is enough to make things really engaging for those that have followed it for the seasons that it’s run so far as it puts Chihaya up against Shinobu once again, both of whom have gone through quite a few changes since they last played against each other. There’s a lot of matches that are taking place as one would expect within the individual part of the tournament, but there’s going to be more focus, at least from the part of the viewer, on what Chihaya and Shinobu will do, especially since Chihaya was wounded in previously and has removed her bandage in order to try and salvage something from it. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #21 Anime Review

The shift to the individual tournament is something that is a bit more welcome than the team one in a way because during those, as much as it is a team effort, it tends to focus on one or two players at most and just a passing glance at the others as they struggle with their own situations while watching the leads. This isn’t quite so bad in a way, but with the individual tournament you know it’s going to be a bit more focused overall, especially as we angle into the final weeks of the season. While we’ve had a bit of character material pop in briefly when it comes to the whole triangle aspect of the show, you also know that it’s going to be mostly relegated to minor subplot at best material, so the focus is going to be largely on Chihaya’s individual match. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #20 Anime Review

With the Mizusawa kids having struggled so hard for so long, first as the smaller group and now as the larger one with the new additions that came on this year, it’s really nice to see that they’re all emotional and bonding from the experience of their wins. This is even more so for the newer members that have only really just discovered karuta and what it is, but have learned how important it is to the others and comprehend its meaning, which makes the emotional side of it all the truer for them as well. But the core cast from the first season is just a joy to watch in seeing how they react to it all and especially with Chihaya at the ceremony itself with how she’s feeling so emotional and dealing with the protocols of the moment. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #19 Anime Review

Though the game can be dragged out pretty far with how the series wants to work its structure, there is something to be said for how mind bogglingly tense they can still make the matches. With the way the internal dialogue goes with the characters and all those that are watching the matches, they can make the simple movement of a card across the floor into something that you really do get tense over. That makes for some good scenes to be sure and it’s very easy to still be caught up in all of this even after this many episodes so far. So seeing the moments where Taichi tries to turn things around, exudes the confidence that you wish he would have in each and every episode, it’s like a wave of relief flows through you. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #18 Anime Review

One of the fun things with this series that I do enjoy is the way that it magnifies everything through this larger than life prism at times when it is, in the end, a game. It’s similar to what we see in sports series to be sure and other shows of a similar nature like Hikaru no Go where it’s just elevated and intense. Passion is the name of the game here as always and there’s something to be said for the way the players are so into it, something that others may not always grasp and really understand. Sadly, too many people seem to go through the days of their lives without having something that they’re truly passionate about that it’s hard to understand those that do have these kinds of intense passions. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #17 Anime Review

With the single episode worth of recap out of the way, we get back to the show in the midst of the tournament and all the drama that comes with it. You have to love a show like this in how it operates since the card readers can be pretty expressive in their own was, but when you ramp it up with some over the top instrumental music, it can come across as a monumental moment, a piece of mythology almost in how it creates the mood of playing a game. The prologue here is a special piece of work all in its own with the way that plays out, such epic and inspiring music in its own way but also something that for me harkens back to what you’d get out of a good Greek mythology film with a far ranging battle building up to something even more epic. READ MORE...

Chihayafuru 2 Episode #16 Anime Review

Chihayafuru has had a fairly busy season so far with what it’s done in the first fifteen episodes as it’s brought in a few new characters, expanded the scope of the club in the eyes of Mizusawa and then shrunk again as the focus is just on playing the tournament matches themselves. The series is like a lot of "sports" shows in that it’s all about the competition, the unique nature of many players and the way the opposing sides go at each other with intensity, nervousness and hesitation before finding their right footing. Unlike a lot of the other sports series though, there’s a lack of really connecting with the other players, Megumi excepted, so there’s not a way to really get drawn into their stories. Which isn’t bad since the main cast here is fun to watch and there’s more than enough character drama to deal with, if it’s ever actually worked on. READ MORE...