Chihayafuru Episode 15

Picking up from last week, Chihaya and the Queen (Shinobu Wakamiya) are still in the middle of their game. Despite Shinobu's commanding lead, she's lost her cool due to Chihaya's attack. In the end, Chihaya is only able to take five cards before losing to Shinobu, but Shinobu is noticeably shaken (scary eyes O.o). In the end, everyone is eliminated except for Taichi, who reaches the finals.

Taichi is running into trouble because of his own memory, which is confusing him with the card positions from other rounds. Taichi ends up losing by three cards, unable to keep up with his opponent and his own thoughts. Taichi forces himself to hide his pain from the loss because he believes he didn't work hard enough. But everyone returns home with renewed vigor.

I still respect Taichi's character a lot. He's able to remain a strong leader, keeping rational despite losing and despite how flustered he became during his match. I also liked how this episode introduced the idea that memory isn't everything in this game. Tsutomu originally mentioned that the game was focused so much on memory, but it was revealed to be a weakness in this week's episode.

Arata is also back in the game, so I'm assuming a match with him against Shinobu is inevitable. We're only halfway through, but I'm definitely sensing the potential for so many more episodes. We'll just have to wait and see.

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