Anime Best in Show

Review: In/Spectre Episode 8 Best in Show

Quick Summary

In In/Spectre episode 7, “She Who Spins Fiction,” Kotoko Iwanaga felt terrified. Not of an attack by the Steel Lady Nanase. Not because she was afraid she wouldn’t come up with a way to counter the wiki page helping make the urban legend come to life. No, she was terrified because she had fallen asleep — and had left Kurou Sakuragawa alone with his beautiful, talented, and generally courageous ex fiancée, Saki Yumihara. It didn’t help at all when she rejoined them that they seemed to feel awkward around each other — as if something had happened! Can Kotoko overcome her insecurities long enough to get her attack on Steel Lady Nanase’s legend? Or does she really have something to worry about?

Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.

Best Moment in the Show

You know, in Kotoko, I think we might have found someone who could take on Magane Chikujouin in an argument — and have a hope of winning. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

This episode setup my favorite moment as yet another comparison of Kotoko to Saki, with Saki seeming to come up short. I say seeming because this show has a way of doing the unexpected.

When Kurou had first taken Saki to meet Rikka Sakuragawa in the hospital (before he had met Kotoko), Rikka’s force of personality overwhelmed Saki. Kurou had intended for the three of them to have a chat, and Rikka even said that Saki seemed to be a good for for Kurou. But Saki looking back on the moment said that Rikka seemed to be “silently corrupting those around her” (01:03). She had to excuse herself — politely, of course — because she couldn’t stay in Rikka’s presence for very long.

Back in the present, Saki and Kotoko were sitting in a car waiting for Steel Lady Nanase to arrive (and no, I’m not giving up on my alternative nickname, the I-Beam Idol). Kurou was waiting nearby as bait. Saki asked how much Kotoko knew about Rikka, and it turned out she knew quite a lot. Up until a few weeks ago, in fact, Rikka had been staying in Kotoko’s mansion (did we know she had a mansion?).

The topic of Kotoko’s first meeting with Rikka came up. The scene had been identical to Saki’s first meeting. There was one big exception: Rikka flat out said, “Kuro, I don’t think she’s a good match for you” (10:17). Now, remember that Saki had panicked and ran away even thought Rikka had said something positive? I was really curious to see what would Kotoko do.

On their first meeting, Rikka came right out and told Kurou that she didn’t think Kotoko was right for him. In front of Kotoko. But guess who eventually blinked (in the proverbial sense)? Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Well, first, Kurou spoke up and said that he agreed.

“That was cringe-worthy,” Saki said, to which Kotoko replied, “Yes. We all cringed.” What was cool, though, was how little Kotoko reacted to Rikka. Even then, I think she was used to how Kurou spoke of her. So instead of getting upset, she was very blasé about it. The way she looked at Rikka forced her to feel guilty and point out that Kotoko wasn’t the worst thing for Kurou.

Saki was flabbergasted (10:40). “You actually made Rikka-san feel bad?”

“You bet I did,” Kotoko answered with a smirk.

Once again, Saki had come face to face with just how far she is out of her depth. I do feel badly for her. She’s a great young woman, and I think she honestly has feelings for Kurou. But the world in which he operates is just too alien for her. On the other hand, it’s Kotoko’s home world. That’s not the only factor, of course. But if you can’t step onto the playing field, it’s hard to score points.

What did you think of the reveals about Rikka in this episode? What was your Best in Show moment? Let me know in the comments!

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