Now that the Prefectural Qualifying Tournament is over, what is next?
What They Say
Kiyosumi High School mahjong members are instructed by the captain of the club to bring their swimwear for a special training session at the Sportsland Pool. Nodoka and Saki show off how beautiful they are in their swimsuits, attracting people and attention from all directions…
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Saki has a dream, a dream where she sees her sister. Brought on, of course, by Kiyosumi's victory. Still feeling on a high after the victory, Hisa decides that the team deserves a little reward for their hard work. So, it's off to the pool. Pool? It must be a fanservice episode then. And yes it is, though it seems as if the animators cannot quite keep everyone on model all the time. Nodoka is overdone as usual, but somehow seems slightly larger and slightly smaller at times. Hisa and Mako also seem to have been enhanced a bit. No such luck for Saki or Yuuki, though.
While fooling around the complex, the team from Kiyosumi happens to run into the team from Ryuumonbuchi. Not a surprise really, since the pool resort is owned by the Ryuumonbuchi Family. So, it is literally Touka's place. And yes, they continue to put Hajime in an outfit that is probably illegal in some jurisdictions. Still, this chance encounter gives an excuse for a Ryuumonbuchi flashback, as Touka recalls their trip to Tokyo last year, and how much Koromo enjoyed going to a family restaurant. Because of the happy memories Koromo has of that trip, Touka vows to win the individual tournament, so that she may bring Koromo and the rest along with her to Tokyo. We also get some moments with the girls from Kazekoshi, who are still engaged in Captain Mihoko worship, and the team from Tsuruga, where Yumi the Strategist is already worrying about whether any of them will be able to advance far in the individual tournament. Her plan had been to rely on teamwork and Momoko's Stealth Power to help them take the team championship.
In the background to all of this frivolity, however, another Prefectural Tournament is underway. It is the Finals of the West Tokyo District Tournament, and one team is favored to dominate: Shiraitodai, the powerhouse school of the district, and current reigning champions of the National Tournament. Led by one Teru Miyanaga. They win the tournament handily, and gather together for a post victory meeting, but Teru looks very unhappy. And she is: she complains that she wasn't even able to warm up against the competition she faced in her round of the match. Another team member then hands her a newspaper which lists the teams they will be facing in the National Tournament. Asking if Teru has ever heard of Kiyosumi, Teru doesn't even respond. When asked "Don't you have a little sister?" (we can see Saki's name listed in the newspaper), Teru, answers coldly. I will leave her response for you to see for yourself.
Since the manga material has given out at this point, we are getting anime original content. "Filler" to most people. Since we are not likely to get any new original material for a while (the manga author is currently on sick leave and not producing new work), filler is what we will have to work with for the rest of this season. As filler goes, this was amusing enough. We had swimsuits. We had flashbacks. And we have quite a lot of breast-centered humor, all of it at Nodoka's expense (not all of it particularly funny, though the watermelon joke was pretty funny). Up ahead will be the individual tournament matches to see who else gets to go to Tokyo to compete. So, expect more mahjong ahead.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Apple Mac Mini with 1GB RAM, Mac OS 10.5 Leopard.