HaNaYaMaTa – Episode 11 Review – “Smile Is Flower”
Machi joined the Yosakoi club and began to whip the other members into shape. XD The club held a “training camp” at a traditional inn owned by Tami’s father. The Hanairo Festival registration date had already passed, but Sally and “Sea Monk” Masaru (the yosakoi shop owner) gets them a spot in the festival anyways. We also learned that Hana’s parents are divorced. Her mother lives in the States while her father teaches English in Japan. Guess who is arriving in Japan as the episode ends…
Yana has an idea to improve their music; adding lyrics and having the girls sing them. In reality, we know it’s just a way for the show to sell the soundtrack to you XP. Even Naru has to sing, despite her reservations. However, something seems to be getting Hana down.
Her mother has come from the States because she realized that she wants them to be a whole family again. That entails moving back to the States though, due to her job. To make matters worse, Hana has to leave tomorrow…
Though it was incredibly contrived, I still felt bad for Hana having to leave her friends behind in this crucial moment. We know she’ll be coming back for the next episode – either to show up in the nick of time, or during the performance – but my heart still reached out to her nonetheless. As I’ve said before it’s the characters that sell this show, not the plot. Naru showed her secret strength again this episode. She always has a knack of showing steel resolve whenever her friends are in trouble. Power of nakama go! On a side note, I like the notion that the mother is the bread maker while the father is mostly a stay at home parent. It’s not the first or last show to do this, but it’s still a nice touch.
I could complain about the clichéd rush to the airport or the overused divorced parent plot device, but that would just be blowing hot air. This is an adorable slice of life show that is perfect for when you are feeling sad. It’s not the place to be looking for a grandiose world spanning and genre-breaking plot. I will genuinely miss the show once it ends next week.