Hibike Euphonium Episode 11 and 12 Review

Hibike Euphonium Episode 11 (4)

Episode 11 Rating: 4/5 curious clouds Crop_4 CloudsExcited Transparent

For those of you who say that Hibike Euphonium is too slow paced or dragged out, I actually find the series quite realistic in its patiently paced moments of every-day drama. In that sense, Hibike is one of the rare series in the anime world that actually depict life in the most slice of life way… unfortunately for KyotoAni, it doesn’t make for an all too entertaining series.

Seriously throughout the entire series, the biggest conflict thus far has been auditions to the actual orchestra that is actually going to perform in the competition. Rehearsals haven’t all been that interesting either. The comedy is witty but non-existent because let’s face it, real life just isn’t that funny sometimes.

I’m surprised that Yuuko would be so worked up and upset over Kaori-senpai’s situation. I mean, how far can high school idolization go? And why has Yuuko been SO fixed on Kaori for so long? Kaori is sweet and plays trumpet simply for the love of music but so do A LOT of people in the orchestra. Yuuko REALLY hates Reina though, to the point where Kumiko actually has to get a bit defensive in front of her friend. I’m also surprised how Kumiko stands out so much in this episode. Throughout the series she’s been content to watch everything in the background. As a result, the storytelling is also quite passive and takes a backseat in terms of character engagement. For Kumiko to stand out in front of everyone and clap for Reina, risking her good girl image and quiet high school life, well, she must really like Reina. The side comment from Midori where Kumiko won’t speak up even for something she wants, content to keep to the status quo, which says a whole lot more about Kumiko than the series has shown us.

“It’s a lie that the gods smile upon those who make an effort. But the god of destiny gave me a wink.” – Kumiko

Episode 12 Rating: 4/5 curiously excited clouds Crop_4 CloudsExcited Transparent

Since Kumiko’s bold step at Reina’s audition, it seems like she’s taken up a new lease on life, to also be a special person, to strive to be that special person for herself. It’s quite admirable for someone who has continuously tried to make herself a supporting character in the entirety of the series. She’s been practicing so hard she ends up getting a nosebleed. Even Midori remarks that it’s really unlike Kumiko to get so fired up about these things. She really did used to be so detached and passive about everything. At least she’s finally found something she’s passionate about now.

Kumiko even gets worked up over the Euphonium when she reflects how Aoi and her older sister were too busy worrying over entrance exams and their future, to actually spend time on the band.

Kumiko tries SOOOO HARD. Similar to her friend Shuuichi who is also having problems with certain parts in the score gets pretty worked up over the current ensemble. When Taki-sensei swaps Kumiko out of the Euphonium part in the piece. It happens all at once and Kumiko is really unused to this. She usually tries just about enough to get by in life. This time she’s sweating out in the sun trying to get the notes just right and it didn’t work out for her. Hard work doesn’t always pay off. In anime yes. In life no.

I actually really love Tomoyo Kurosawa’s acting as Kumiko in this series. Her voice is so nuanced. When Kumiko is being subtly sassy but not outright rude, when she’s quietly determined, when she’s unsure. Kurosawa-san has a really sensitive perception of her character’s personalities and comparing her in Hibike Euphonium to her pitches and sounds in Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru as Itsuki or even her supporting role in Amagi Brilliant Park, each voice is so unique.

At the end of the episode, Hibike finds a Euphonium key chain in the new toys featured in the gachapon machines. A rare little token of coincidence that happens to her prompts her forward… I’m soooo curious as to where this is gonna go because Kumiko has only begun to change a little and we are already ending the season…

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

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