Hello and before I get into other things, happy Pride month!! I KNOW Yui knew their performance was gonna air in June so she had to dress the members in full color because it’s the most important month after all. I hope everyone is doing well. The weather has been a bit gloomy and rainy the past couple of days. We’re in June, weather, please get it together! I’m here for another episode review and not for whining so I’ll get to that. I have to say, snow flurries sounds too much like an ice cream brand than an appropriate title for an episode. But I was eagerly waiting for this week.
Another emotional episode AND we finally get to hear the version of Umezono Academy! In last week’s review, I wrote that I was a little worried whether the secret addition that Setsu and Nagamori decided between them would throw off the rest because it’s their first competition and it’d be a surprise on stage. But at the same time, I anticipated learning just what it was about. And oh boy, I wasn’t ready.
But before that. I’m in love with the Handicraft Club and their supportiveness. It’s not just any type of support, but the support that their friend certainly revels in: attention and loud cheers! They even did a banner like they are fans of an idol, it was perfect. Turning to our team, the stage fright takes over Maeda, Yui. Kaito looks a little stiff as well but it all washes away with the firm and resolute strums of Setsu as he sets the tempo for the rest and tunes his shamisen. The first 30 seconds into their performance, the audience doesn’t know what to make of them because they are good? But not in an unconventional way? Mai and her teammates are confused as well because all this time they probably listened to Mai’s rambling on how good Setsu is or how she is his eternal rival or things along those lines. But the Setsu on stage is just a part of a team that doesn’t stand out, if not subpar. However, Mai’s brother Souichi can discern the quality of Setsu’s sound and the way he harmonizes with the rest. That’s his best friend right there!
It’s almost time for the big reveal. I enjoy watching Nagamori taking his chance at teasing Setsu whenever he’s asked a favor with “What if I don’t?”s or “What if I say I can’t?”s. Not like he expects an answer or the reply he gets will make him change his mind but he probably loves drawing reactions out of Setsu since he usually walks around with a resting bitch face. But Setsu doesn’t budge, he knows he’s accompanying his father’s rakugo performances and he has talent in creating atmospheric sounds. While I don’t get the imagery Setsu asks for from Nagamori’s embellishments, sound-wise I really liked the unusual addition and went back to this part of the episode to listen to it. Once again, please, I need the soundtrack on a streaming platform!
The whole team is on fire and Setsu finally shows his own color in the second half. I understand that you need different types of effects to be able to convey what the audience is feeling, how are they responding to the performance or the imagery Umezono conveys. However, when a traditional song is being played, and the tempo is high as well, cutting in with a more Western-ish classical arrangement with strings kind of threw me off. The tension kept stacking up and from the pace of Setsu’s fingers and his expression you see the build-up continues in the performance but the sound we hear matches neither the tension nor the quiet sound of Setsu like piling snow. I can’t think of any alternatives other than they could make a different arrangement from what the team have already been playing to convey the quiet feeling, I can only say this part should’ve been handled better because it was one of the important climaxes. Even then, I’m as mesmerized as the judges or the audience and proud of them for putting on such a performance! While the adrenaline is still running high, others excitedly exchange their thoughts on the performance while Setsu is trying to mind his business but keeps being challenged by the other schools’ key players. Let my poor baby rest!
Without much stalling, the award ceremony starts. I was very surprised by the placements and from Wakana’s explanation, I noticed I hadn’t put in the factor that this is the group division and how the contestants play as an ensemble plays a big role. Hence, Umezono Academy comes third, Mai and her friends rank second and the Osaka guys were the winner of the division. Mai is torn between them becoming second and Umezono coming third but either way, she has a hard time digesting the outcome.
The award ceremony has one more surprise up its sleeve, the Judge’s Special Award, which goes to Umezono for their spectacular and exciting performance. I was so happy to see them feel more joyous to get the special award than their placement, it was o moving! Looking at the scores, the first three groups were really close and it could go either way as the announcer said but it was a good way to wrap up the contest. We hear some final remarks from Maeda, Yui, and Setsu on feeling conflicted, Souichi’s excitement for the individuals, and Mai recalling Seiryuu’s words.
I thought we’d be done with the surprises by now but no. Setsu’s brother Wakana surely looks 30-something, but seeing their childhood selves I guessed he’d be in his early 20’s because they didn’t appear to be that far from each other in age. But not being old enough to drink??? What in actual tarnation…
Looks like I had more to say on this episode but can you blame me? The episode was packed. How was the episode for you? What did you think of the Umezono performance? Let me know in the comments, otherwise, see you tomorrow!
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Other reviews of Those Snow White Notes
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 1 — Desolate
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 2 — Apple Blossoms
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 3 — Sudden Downpour
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 4 — Spring Dawn
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 5 — Playing Together
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 6 — Homeland
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 7 — Wind
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 8 —Tuning Fork
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 10 —
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 11 —
- Those Snow White Notes Episode 12 —