Ao Haru Ride Episode 11 Review

“If what you lost was too big, and you can’t replace it with something else… you don’t have to replace I with just one thing, right? If you get tens mall things, or a hundred small things all together, it will be enough of a reason to keep you going!” – Futaba Yoshioka

Ao Haru Ride Episode 11 (1)

Rating: 4.5/5 happy clouds Crop_45 CuriousClouds Transparent

Ao Haru Ride moments give me way too many feels…

Ao Haru Ride Episode 11 (8)We return to Ao Haru Ride this week with Kou’s back story and all the difficulties he struggled through as a teenager with his mother in the hospital. I guess in many ways Kou was forced to grow up a lot faster than everyone else and a lot of his past has hardened him into a pretty jaded person. Perhaps he also has a few regrets with not spending more time with his mother when he was healthy because he was almost always studying. He even blames himself for not taking better care of his mother… Man, this episode really doesn’t hold back on you and throws you straight into the most poignant parts of the story. Major props to Yuki Kaji for the acting here.

I’m surprised how studying can bring everyone together so quickly. It’s pretty refreshing to have the story told from Kou’s perspective rather than Futaba’s for a change.

But UGH cute the love rival in the library… (not a big fan of him. Especially in the manga) I hope she doesn’t bump into library guy. Ever. Ao Haru Ride Episode 11 (15)I’ll be happy if the anime wraps up happily with Kou and Futaba, without leading us into a season two for more relationship problems.

After Kou skips out on studying yet again… Futaba ends up looking for him at Kou’s house and meets Tanaka-sensei instead. Tanaka is just the cutest doting older brother. I love Futaba’s persistence when it comes to Kou. She’s pretty chill about everything else but when it comes to Kou, Tanaka is right, Futaba is exactly like a storm.

After Futaba finds Kou in the adult district, then end up walking home alongside the river again. Just when Futaba wants to try and persuade Kou to start anew, Kou is still caught up in the past and Futaba persists with breaking down Kou’s walls. Kou is just really scared to get close to anyone again to care again. When Futaba and Kou fall over on the hill, OMG THIS WAS THE MOMENT I WAS WAITING FOR. THEY ARE JUST TOO CUTE.

“To let my heart be moved, to laugh from the bottom of my heart, to find meaning in everyday life. I wanted to be given permission.” – Kou Mabuichi

Kou’s moment of enlightenment was too intense. Just because you’ve gone through a lot of crap in your life, doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to laugh and smile and find happiness. Ao Haru Ride Episode 11 (37)It’s such a simple message but we tend to lose sight of it when we get caught up in the regrets and the negativity. There is honestly no one better for Kou than Futaba and I hate how the manga has progressed because it complicates Kou and Futaba’s relationship a hell of a lot more than it needs to be.

This really was just THE BEST MOMENT EVER. It’s moments like these that put Ao Haru Ride on a totally different level from regular shoujo series. There’s so much more depth to the characters than just your typical archetypes. The story is about growing up, growing apart, starting anew. All of these themes and situations within the high school setting are all aspects of life that we relate or have related to in the past.

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?


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