Sound! Euphonium 2 Episode 5

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“Miraculous Harmony”

Wednesdays 12:30 pm EDT on Crunchyroll

After practicing all summer, the band finally performs in the Kansai competition.

Jel’s Thoughts

Wow, where do we even go from here? This felt very much like the last episode of season 1, putting a neat little bow on most everything and packing all the emotional punch that comes with that. We see the epilogue of Miyore and Nozomi’s mended relationship, putting Miyore in a much better state of mind for her performance. We get to draw parallels between their rift and the former awkwardness between Kumiko and Reina, re-affirming how important they’ve become to each other. Look at that fire in Kumiko’s eyes! Even Asuka has her moment, sharing her true feelings and being completely sincere for the first time that we’ve ever seen.

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There’s really not much more to say as a large portion of the episode is consumed by the performance, all played in real time. It’s something best experienced rather than me trying to write about it. At this point we all expect the presentation to be gorgeous but I want to make sure we don’t take for granted how beautiful this show looks when it’s at its best, which is pretty much every episode. Of course there’s no diaglogue while everyone plays, but little details like the photos taped to the girls’ sheet music and Kumiko’s memories during the trumpet solo really hit home.

Needless to say this was a great episode and I am looking forward to seeing how they can top this for the performance at the Nationals. We just cashed in for a lot of emotional payoff so I’m hoping there will be enough time to build the tension back up in the second half. I mentioned last week there are still some open plot threads like whatever is up with Kumiko’s sister and I’m sure there will be some new band drama to deal with, so I’m not too worried about it.

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4 thoughts on “Sound! Euphonium 2 Episode 5

  1. Why is everyone raving so much about this episode? First off, it was a predetermined result. Of course they were going to advance, or the show would pretty much be over. More to the point, though, because the four preceding episodes were largely consumed with ridiculous and petulant teen grudges between ill-defined characters, the whole build-up was entirely anti-climactic.

    Other than possibly Kumiko, I don’t feel I know anything more about a single one of these characters than that they REALLY want to win band competitions. Even Reina is a mystery, defined only by her competiveness (do we know WHY she’s so competitive?) and her nonsensical sensei love. Oh, and the pebble-in-your-shoe teased relationship with Kumiko that is apparently going to irritate me without any resolution for the next half dozen or so episodes.

    I love Kyoto Animation, and I highly appreciate the level of craft they bring to every one of their works. But when I compare this show to Hyouka, where the focus was always kept on the four main characters and you could practically feel them growing up from one episode to the next, well, Euphonium just feels like a tepid, limp sports anime that I just can’t bring myself to care about.

    • I’ll agree to disagree on most of that but I will say Reina is the most easily defined character the series, that’s kind of her main purpose. She wants to be special and unique and to do that she thinks she needs to be the best musician possible. When the show starts Kumiko is looking for her own sense of purpose and she’s attracted to Reina because she’s so certain about what she wants. The two then balance each other out as Kumiko finds her competitive fire and Reina learns that winning isn’t EVERYTHING.

      As for everyone else, they don’t really need to be developed all that much as they mostly serve as foils for the main two.

  2. This was a fantastic episode, which I can’t imagine being topped by anything else this season. So I am looking forward to being blown away by KyoAni again.

    Letting the music speak for itself was a courageous move, and much appreciated from this former tubist. Actually hearing all the flaws for myself added to the nervousness, and brought back reminders of slight flubs in competitions that may have cost us the victory. This and the trumpet solo audition episode are really what stands out for me, because as the other comment on this page shows, voiceless exposition can be lost in translation.

    That said, Reina’s solo was noticeably worse than her solo in the first season. My #Kumirei predilection reasons that out as her saying she is very nervous about dedicating her solo to Kumiko. An unsteady entry and frequent awkward crescendos really speaks volumes.

    By the way, I thought it was a typo before, but now that I have read it again I feel I should point it out: her name is Mizore, not Miyore. And her brief oboe solo was absolutely the best thing about the entire performance. Soulful, and heart-rendingly beautiful.

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