Anime Best in Show

Review: Somali and the Forest Spirit Episode 3 Best in Show

Quick Summary

In Somali and the Forest Spirit episode 3, “The Sea at the Bottom of the Cave,” Golem and Somali travel to a desert city. Golem tries to sell some of the herbs he had gathered for money to buy a meal for Somali, but the city was already well stocked, so his attempts to barter weren’t as successful as he’d hoped. While he was engaged with the merchant, Somali dashed to a low wall. Peering over, she was delighted to see an enormous pit. To her further excitement, she saw some kind of flying creatures that illuminated the darkness. Somali being Somali, she wanted to explore and ran to the entrance. But a huge wolf, one eye patched, snarled at her. How will Golem be able to generate enough money for Somali to eat — and have someplace to sleep? Or will the wolf make those considerations moot?

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

Best Moment in the Show

Somali knows what a dad should do. And Golem lives up to her expectations. That’s a complex as the equation gets for her! Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

This moment starts after Kikiira and Somali descended into the mines. After marveling at the beauty of the luminescent drifting mushrooms and the landscape in general, Kikiira asked what Somali’s real relationship was to Golem (19:14). Even though she called him dad, Kikiira thought that “even for an interclan foster family, it just seems different somehow.”

Her answer is a shining example of unvarnished fact. It doesn’t represent any clan’s propaganda. It doesn’t advance any tribe’s agenda. It doesn’t take into account spin or optics or sales or marketing considerations. It’s just Somali answering Kikiira’s question honestly.

“I call him dad because he’s my dad,” she said (19:32). She then goes on to list the traits that prove he’s her dad. For example, he protects her when she’s in danger. If she’s about to get lost (which is most of the time she’s mobile!), he takes her hand. He keeps her occupied if she can’t sleep.

Because he does the things a dad should do for her, he is her dad.

If Kikiira was wondering about Golem and Somali’s relationship, I wonder if others are curious as well. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Putting aside the sword of Damocles that this series hold over my heart, I thought Somali’s answer was refreshingly true. On one hand, this put me in mind of the family unit made up of Kobayashi, Tohru, and Kanna in Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid. I’ve also enjoyed seeing how different manifestations of the idea that family, and the love and support that should come with it, show that family is where you find it. And sometimes, it’s not where you expect.

More importantly for this series, though, I think it underscores just what Golem means to Somali. She’s not just calling him dad by default. She honestly and completely sees him as her father.

And that makes the sense of foreboding even more heavy.

What did you think of the dessert city? What was your Best in Show moment? Let me know in the comments!

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2 thoughts on “Review: Somali and the Forest Spirit Episode 3 Best in Show

  1. There’d be less anger because everyone would be worried about Somali!

    I swear, I can’t remember a show that gave me more flashbacks to when my kids were young. “Somali in Danger” works because it feels so authentic! My kids were always running off and getting into things, which in retrospect I can see was a sign of curiosity.

    At the time, it was a sign of an impending coronary — mine!

    Seriously, I’m completely onboard with the “wholesome and wonderful moments” comment.

  2. This series is just full of wholesome and wonderful moments. More people should watch it. There’d probably be a little less anger in the world.

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