Whoops I missed 10, but it’s of no consequence.
Anyways, the penultimate episode of Nogizaka Haruka starts the last arc of the show, with Haruka’s birthday celebration party. Her birthday is on the 20th of October, FYI.
Being informed beforehand by the ever-reliable Mika (who needs wingmen when you have her!), Yuto initially scouts out a present in Akiba and with help from Nobunaga, Yuto chooses a Dojikko Aki-chan figurine for Haruka.
Right after buying it, he gets whisked off by Nanami and Hazuki to the airport, where a connecting flight brings them to the Happy Spring Island, a resort island bought by Haruka’s father for her. Damn rich bastards. Yuto somehow develops a spot of inferiority complex when he sees the opulent gifts for Haruka and the many celebrities and VIP’s that have been invited for the joyous occasion, but a spot of relaxation with Haruka and the rest lifts up his spirits.
Unfortunately, right before the party begins, a jealous young jock, who has been spying on Haruka earlier, approaches him and intimidates Yuto by parading his intended gift for Haruka, a pretty white dress complete with a full set of accessories, which triggers back the inferiority complex Yuto had earlier. The episode ends on that note, with a cliffhanger to be resolved next week.
Hm, a fun episode overall, but it’s kinda stupid to end the show by playing on the difference between Yuto and Haruka’s social standings. Well, at the least on how easily Yuto is affected by it all of a sudden when he hasn’t cared about it much all this while. Just makes him feel out of character, y’know. Having that idiotically lame gaijin jock as his “opponent” also doesn’t help too. Yuto is clearly way more GAR than he was, so it was irritating in that manner as well too.
There’s also Yuto’s sudden selective memory loss. Quite annoying on how it plays up by the way. He can perfectly remember the hardship that Nobunaga gave him but totally forgot about giving away something to a cute, crying little girl in the playground. I would definitely remember if it was me, lol.
The beach portion, is of course a must for shows like this, and I’m finally glad they did it this week. Finally got to see Haruka in that oh-so-awesome white bikini. Mika provides more fanservice, and man, she is such a precocious kid! I lol’ed at Yuto accidentally removing her bikini top yet again, as well as the part where Haruka nearly drowns and Yuto is conned by the rest in to attempting CPR on her, which is interrupted by Haruka regaining consciousness, heh. Now all we need is an onsen episode and most of the required cliche’s will be covered. I wonder if they’ll cover that in an DVD-only OVA/extra episode.
Also went a bit crazy with the screencapping this week. Low-bandwidth users are forewarned before proceeding.