Fairy Tail 20, Cross Game 47, Baka to Test 10

After a story arc that took forever, Fairy Tail 20 brings us filler, and that’s all right. It’s mostly a flashback on the birth of Happy, with a side dish of Natsu’s emotional growth, what little of it there is.

It’s routine. Young Natsu, who at that time wanted to do nothing but beat up Erza and Gray (which is pretty much like he does now) finds an egg and decides to hatch it. A girl we haven’t met yet named Lisanna volunteers to help, and on the way, gives Natsu a new role to play: father, with her as the mother. Now, you may ask who the hell is this girl and where did she go? We see her as an adult, but not in the present day, and she seems to be a painful memory for Natsu, which means naturally we’ll get a story arc on it eventually.

So Natsu gets a little family and calms down slightly. We see the guild members when they were smaller, and see what little rivalries they had at the time. Enough for a filler. Hopefully the next story arc begins next week. Let’s hope it’s a little more compact.

Cross Game 47, instead of making Akane’s surgery concurrent, with the team having to play wondering how it would turn out, eases up on the pressure-meter, slightly. The surgery is over before the game begins, and Aoba, who was at the hospital, texts Momiji to tell her to give Kou the V sign, which surely means the operation went well. But what if she’s lying?

There is a lot of lying in this episode, all to spare people worry or pain. Kou is the only one who knows that the surgery is even happening, until he tells Aoba, in a quiet scene at Wakaba’s grave. They mustn’t tell Akaishi, or he might fall into another slump. Other people aren’t to know because they’re lousy liars. But that does nothing to relieve the pressure on Kou and Aoba. It doesn’t matter for the latter, of course, because she’s not playing, but calm, easygoing Kou is obviously feeling it. Whether it’s about Akane or the big game is anyone’s guess.

It doesn’t help that there’s still the love stories that have to get worked out. Azuma tells Aoba again that he’s interested in her. And Aoba actually asks Kou how she compares to Akane. “Can I lie?” is his response, and it’s a good one. Besides, with all the pressure around, asking Kou a question like that the morning of the game isn’t the most sensible thing to do. What’s Aoba thinking?

In fact, the pressure was getting to me, too. I worried about Akane and I worried about the game. The scene would shift to the hospital where Akane’s parents and Aoba waited for the surgery to end, and I worried about Kou’s state of mind. Then it would shift to the stadium and I worried about Akane. There’s little worse than worrying about things you can’t control. It’s unlikely that anything will happen to Akane, especially since they prayed to Wakaba to protect her. Wakaba’s always come through. On the other hand, Wakaba died, didn’t she? Being a pessimist, I can’t rule out a bad ending.

But then Cross Game pulls out another lovely moment. Momiji, in the stands, gives Kou the V sign (before Aoba texts her), the music picks up, and Kou seems to get a burst of energy. As Kou once said, worrying doesn’t solve anything. The game is about to begin! Let’s put the surgery aside and play some baseball!

UPDATE: Rewatching the episode, maybe I misread the situation between Kou and Momiji. It seems like Momiji’s V sign might be a secret signal between Aoba and Kou that the operation was a success, which would explain why Kou was so desperate to find where Momiji was in the stands. On the other hand, Momiji obviously didn’t know about the code or Akane’s surgery when she flashed it, or she wouldn’t have. Which would be wonderful, in a way. Momiji, part of this long story where many things are unexpressed but understood, reassures Kou without knowing the reason.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Kaname, going into surgery, flashes the V sign.

Can I say once again that I love Cross Game?

Baka to Test 10 sort of meanders around for the first third before deciding on a plotline: the kids want to rescue some lost items from the school vault. But first we have a scene with Akira and Akihisa Yoshi (breakfast, lunch and dinner in a can). And Yuko, Hideyoshi’s sister, stop by to insult him for no reason.

Things pick up when Kyouji, who must have been responsible for the chaos last episode, offering to help them break in. He’s there to steal the mock exam questions. Class F, the dumbest class, is dead-set against it—they’re dumb, but they’re honest–but it’s too late now.

It must be in the school handbook that everyone must insult Class-F at least once.

Still, they manage to turn the tables on him in the end in a satisfying fashion. Not much more to say about this episode except, after the first ten minutes, it got a little more coherent than some.

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