Somehow there were two episodes released this week.
(Spoilers in this review)
The Akagi siblings are introduced in this episode. Gaju, a crass and tactless high school brat, really wants to dance with Shizuku even though he already has Mako, his younger sister, as a partner. Shizuku, who’s tired of how Kiyoharu always tries to hide his own problems, blows up at Sengoku for not telling her to withdraw from the previous competition and decides to team up with Gaju to get back at Kiyoharu. Meanwhile Gaju has told Mako that he won’t accept her as his partner until she dances better than Shizuku. Out of desperation, she turns to Sengoku and asks him to get Tatara, who had impressed her during the brief couple practice session, to dance with her. And thus this revenge couple competition begins.
While Shizuku does have a point about how Kiyoharu sucks at communication, her behavior seems rather childish and is considered to be a fit. I guess it’s reasonable for her to act like this since she’s only in middle school. Perhaps she has her reasons for her behavior. And maybe Gaju does, too.
The series is really pushing the idea that dance couples can be seen as romantic partners. A lot of rough language with unfortunate implications, courtesy of Sengoku, is tossed around. Of course, Mako and Gaju are just brother and sister so their relationships is clearly platonic. The same can’t be said for Shizuku and Kiyoharu, it seems.
As usual, the animation is a point of contention. Lots of still frames which indicate that they’re trying to be faithful to the original source material, but less actual animation as a result. I feel like this episode was better about it, though.
The relevation that Tatara has honed senses that can allow him to read his partner’s mind is to be expected, but it’s also a bit dull. Of course the protagonist just happens to be innately talented, right? Well, it’s probably the only way he could catch up to the others. And he has other defects that serve to balance him out (namely his personality).
This episode featured less content that could cause specific viewers to fly in a rage (pointless fanservice and purposeful camera shots), but it also seemed to meekly following a well-worn narrative. Not every episode can be chock full of action, however, so cut Ballroom e Youkoso some slack. At least Tatara made some progress mentally.