After last week's big revelations, it was almost a cert that this week's trip to Yuusari would involve taking a breather. But I could have done without the record-breaking number of tearful incidents that we get...
What they say
Gauche Suede is on his last delivery before a big promotion. In the outskirts of Yodaka, the darkest area of Amberground, Gauche is surprised to find that the package is a young boy named Lag Seeing. Lag had been traumatised by his mother's abduction and is due to be delivered to his aunt. In this remote area rife with Gaichuu, Lag and Gauche face a dangerous journey that inspires Lag to become a Letter Bee.
Gauche is awake - and with full memories of being Gauche, and not just Noir. For both Sylvette and Lag it's a joyful day, and Gauche is soon allowed to go back home with Sylvette - although it's fair to say that Thunderland has his doubts about just how genuine Gauche's recovery truly is. With his homecoming being on the same day as Aria and Niche are due to return from their delivery, though, there are more than enough excuses for a party. But first Lag has a few deliveries to run - and until Niche returns, Gauche volunteers to be his dingo. But Thunderland believes that something's not right...
The problem, you see, is that if "Gauche" has only partially recovered his memories, he'll know enough to hoodwink Lag and Sylvette while still being Noir - and that would mean serious trouble. But this episode doesn't worry too much about such things, other than just raising the possibility - instead, we get an episode full of the joys of Lag and Sylvette being reunited with Gauche - and to be honest, you do begin to wonder whether Lag and Gauche should just get a room together at some points, such is the way they seem to be gazing into each others' eyes at points.
It's nice enough, and suitably heartwarming, if such things float your boat. Me, I was hoping (against hope) that this episode would carry on the almost breakneck pace of recent episodes and tell us more about the artificial sun, but instead we get at least four occasions where Lag and/or Sylvette hit the "floods of tears" button, which even by this show's standards is probably something of a record.
And that is why this episode personifies the biggest complaint I have against Letter Bee: that every time it seems that it's starting to go somewhere, it slams on the brakes and goes off on a little tangent. To be fair, this tangent is a little more relevant than most - we can't deny that Gauche's homecoming is a Big Deal - but it's still not really relevant to the bigger picture, other than one or two short scenes. Or to put it another way: meh.
Gauche's homecoming had to be covered, but personally i wish a little less time was devoted to it so we could get back to the good stuff. When Tegami Bachi is good, it's really, really good - but this episode sadly doesn't fall into that category.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Apple MacBook Pro 17" with 4GB RAM and Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard.