Nagi no Asukara: Episodes 21 & 22


*Spoiler* Our favorite fish is back!

Flash Rating: Unchanged; 9/10. A bit anti climactic but I still have high hopes for an explosive finale.

Episode 21 – “The Messenger from the Bottom of the Sea”

Manaka is finally awake and all seems well as her and Hikari go off to observe all the changes, but mostly to play in the snowflake snow. Miuna is afraid to interfere with the Shioshi kid’s reunion even though they are the same age, regardless of Chisaki. Tsumugu announces that he has to return to his university and proposes an idea to talk to Uroko leading to Tsumugu earning an Uroko-style curse.

Episode 22 – “Thing That Was Lost”

Everyone goes out looking for Uroko and setting out food and dirty magazines to lure him out. Cities further from the sea begin to experience colder weather and saltflake snow, leaving Tsumugu in Oshiooshi while his professor heads back without him in case the weather gets worse. Manaka continues to have lapses in her memories which cause Hikari to grow more concerned. Hikari runs off from school, running into Uroko who explains the ending of the Ofunehiki story as it revolves around Manaka.

 

Discussion

These past two episodes have been rather anticlimactic with the introduction of Manaka’s new problem, leading to the predictability of Miuna being a huge focus of the stories climax, and even the emotional grinding between the characters who have obvious interests with each other. We were forced into hoping that with the return of Manaka that things would become more pleasent and we’d be getting a happy ending. Despite still having a happy ending in sight, the new issues arise centering around Manaka and Miuna while only 4 episodes remain. As you can expect, a huge plot twist is expected. Get your tissue boxes ready, a huge emotional storm is looming.

In both the episodes, we put our focus on Manaka who is obviously a little off and Hikari is the first to notice. She has constant lapses in her memories that mainly revolve around attraction to others but doesn’t seem too concerned about it. We’re due to expect some more explanation on Manaka’s loss of feelings in the coming episodes but we’re left curious as to why and how she managed to ditch the ability to love. It was shocking in episode 21 when Hikari first notices the lifelessness in Manaka’s eyes while she is observing Akari tending to Akira’s accident. It began to become more obvious when episode 22 came around with Uroko’s explanation but left so much to be desired considering that Manaka acts exactly as she always had and still retains her connections with her friends. If she were to lose the ability to love, wouldn’t that in turn make her sociopathic especially towards her friends; wouldn’t it be noticeable that she does not “love” her friends as she had prior to the Ofunehiki? Hikari was the first to notice her memory loss but it was not obvious until Uroko intervened.

Miuna also continues to be quite the center of attention. Uroko explains that Miuna had gained ena through Manaka’s loss of ena, and Manaka even confirms that she heard a voice that told her to give, “something to someone,” most likely referring to Miuna gaining her ena. But that isn’t all, during Uroko’s appearance, Miuna points out that Manaka’s ena wasn’t the thing taken away, so if Miuna gained Manaka’s ena, would she also have gained something else through Manaka’s loss of being able to love? With all these speculations and anti climactic plot twists, making predictions on the closing episodes may be hard to guess. It is obvious Miuna has a direct connection with Manaka, and we may even seen Miuna being directly involved with saving the surface from the foreseen end that had been calmed while Manaka was still serving as Ojoshi.

Everyone should have noticed the visual changes in the OP and ED; the OP now revealing Manaka and the ED becoming more vibrant and colorful. However, based on the direction and impact of each episode, you’d expect things to be more cheerful rather than the contrast we’ve been noticing. Still the changes are decent and serve as a nice foreshadow to a happy ending.

To close it off, I’d like to point out Tsumugu’s obvious enjoyment in being cursed by Uroko. Uroko most likely has some plan to involve Tsumugu, also allowing Tsumugu the chance to be near Chisaki while he still retains his fishy ailment.

 

Predictions

Manaka is going to be confronted about her lost ability to love. Tsumugu will most likely get the answers he wants from both Uroko and Chisaki now that the series is winding down. I highly doubt we will see a sad ending but don’t expect any happy resolutions coming up soon.

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About Clooby
I am half Korean from my mother's side while the other half is a mix of Cherokee Indian and German I grew up in Seoul, Korea swimming competitively and playing Counter-Strike, Halo 3, and Call of Duty semi-professionally for cash prizes. My favorite anime series include FMA, The Melancholy of Suzumiya Haruhi, Steins;Gate, and Gurren Lagann among others.

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