The Night of the Summer Festival / The Distance Between Them
Episode 8 of Tomo-chan Is A Girl begins near the end of summer break. Tomo, Misuzu, and Carol play the king game. Misuzu becomes the king and tells Tomo she must attend the summer festival with Jun alone, startling her.
Tomo arrives at Jun’s house and asks him to attend the summer festival with her. He accepts her offer but doesn’t show much enthusiasm. Tomo and her friends leave. We cut to Jun in his room, and he’s excited to spend alone time with Tomo at the summer festival. He questions Tomo’s romantic confession from episode one. Meanwhile, Tomo and Misuzu endure inner conflicts regarding Tomo and Jun’s futures. In the morning, Jun heads for the festival. At the same time, Carol asks Misuzu to go to the festival with her and Misaki because she doesn’t want Misuzu to feel lonely.
Jun and Tomo arrive at the festival and indulge in some activities. Some vendors notice Tomo and pass the word around. She used to cause mass mayhem at the event during her younger years. Misuzu, Carol, and Misaki arrive at the festival soon after and start exploring. Some men try to flirt with Tomo, but Jun pulls her away from them. Tomo thanks Jun for his help, and Jun starts acting weird toward Tomo. They head up to the highest balcony to prepare for the fireworks. Meanwhile, Misuzu notices Tomo and Jun, but Carol pulls her aside. Misuzu realizes Carol brought her along, so she can’t interfere with Tomo and Jun’s romantic moment.
Before the fireworks go off, Tomo hesitates to tell Jun how she feels about him. She questions if it’s okay to break what they have now. They watch the fireworks and head home. Tomo tells Jun they should do this again in the future. The segment concludes with Jun confused about his newfound feelings for Tomo as he fears he’ll never have a solid punching match with her again. The next set piece starts with Tomo and her friends on the school rooftop. She tells them since the new terms began, Jun’s acting more cautious around Tomo. Tomo heads for class, leaving Misuzu and Carol behind.
In class, Misuzu ponders what life will be like once Tomo and Jun become lovers. After school, the philanderer and his buddies harass Misuzu. They try dragging her elsewhere, but Carol shows up and defends Misuzu by tasing the philanderer. Carol and Misuzu flee to an abandoned factory to hide from them. Misuzu calls Jun to let him know about their situation and asks him not to tell Tomo. He hangs up and proceeds to the abandoned factory, but Tomo stops him. He tells Tomo what’s happening, and she insists on helping him find Carol and Misuzu. Meanwhile, Misaki overhears their conversation and is worried about Carol.
While discussing their friendship, the philanderer finds Misuzu and Carol. Before he could make a move, Tomo stops him. Jun and Tomo proceed to beat up the philanderer’s men. At the same time, Misaki finds Carol and Misuzu. After seeing Carol undressed and dirtied, Misaki’s infuriated. Before Tomo and Jun deliver a beating to the philanderer, Misaki stops them because he wants to make him suffer for what he did. Carol tells Misaki it was a misunderstanding, calming him down. Misuzu asks Tomo and Jun to leave so she can discuss things with the philanderer.
After they leave, Misuzu intimidates the philanderer and warns him never to bother them again. The episode concludes with Jun showing more pleasant gestures toward Tomo, exciting her.
The Episode Review
It looks like things are starting to heat up swiftly between Jun and Tomo. Not only that but it appears Misuzu’s starting to feel jealous or fearful for her friendship with Tomo. Although she’s given Tomo nice advice to help her win Jun’s heart, she’s starting to worry about feeling like a third wheel.
It’s a common feeling close friends typically endure, so it’s nice to see this emotion touched upon heavily with Misuzu’s character. It makes Misuzu feel more realistic and gives fans something to ponder as we reach the anime’s climax. Many people will be let down by Tomo’s lack of resolve at the festival, though. However, it helps the anime stand apart from other romantic comedy works.
Most anime in this genre have their characters confess their feelings during festival-themed episodes. This isn’t to discredit those works, but it’s refreshing to see Tomo-Chan Is A Girl not follow a similar path. Regardless, her one on one time with Jun impacted him and it was great to see its influence play out in the second set piece.
Overall, this was a fun episode of Tomo-chan Is A Girl. It balanced its drama and comedy well and delved into the cast’s psyche. I’m looking forward to seeing what happens next with them as we get closer to Tomo and Jun becoming a full-fledged couple.
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