“Chapter 72 Flowing Away / Chapter 73 White Storm (Part 1)”
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Rei’s exhibition match versus Meijin Souya plunges him back into the game as it becomes the highlight of the shogi world. Thrust into the spotlight, he feels lost, especially compared to the impeccable Souya. However, it would appear the young Meijin is less put together than he lets on…
This episode went about as I expected, albeit with a bit less heart-to-heart with Mr. Hayashida than I thought. I suppose Hina’s development has had its time, an accordingly he doesn’t muse on it much. Hayashida’s presence is mostly affirmative, giving him a second opinion to prove that he really did do something wonderful for Hina, even if he’s still too pessimistic to realize it. I think it’s a little bit of a shame that he had to spell out the reason why he was effective, it was basically what I said last week so obviously that could have been understood from the subtext. Granted, this manga is officially a seinen series (how that is possible I have no idea), so I suppose there might be some high school guys out there that might have been just as clueless as Rei was.
On its face, Rei’s next match is kind of a joke. Imagine if the winner of March Madness had to play the Golden State Warriors, and you have about the skill disparity we’re about to witness. Meijin Souya has been talked up so much that he seems more monster than man, a force of nature that exists only to play shogi. I’m hoping this arc will give us more to his character to flesh out the man behind the master. We already get a big glimpse into his psyche, as his calm facade crumbles around him while he remains none the wiser. I’m afraid they’ve made him too neurotic, as now he seems less like Rei, and thus harder to compare with him. Rei still has some self-awareness in his life, whereas Souya seems to be so out of touch with reality that he needs to be led around by the hand. Who knows
- I’m glad they still have the dumb cat shogi pieces on that bulletin board. Been a while since we’ve seen those guys.
- What is the market for shogi sponsorships anyway? Old people I guess? Chess advertising seems niche enough already and at least that is an international sport.
- I’m not quite sure why the waitress would be right next to Souya when he’s clearly being interviewed. I get that it was for dramatic effect, but it makes the news production seem very shoddy.