Well this is even later than it should have been. It is not internet problems for me this time but rather a combination of University starting off at a rather intense pace coupled with my developing a rather ad case of man flu, that I no undoubtedly caught of one of the fresh-faced first years that have swarmed the university, which I am only now just starting to get over. Not that any of this really matters as I need to get this review need to be published before …. well the new season has already started but at least the series I’m reviewing this coming season hasn’t started yet.
Anyway, Non Non Biyori episode twelve, the season finale, or at least that is how it should be but in all honesty the very beautiful montage and subsequent ending short scene very much felt like the perfect ending for the season and both episode eleven and episode twelve, that both take place after significant time skips, very much feel like OVAs or extra episodes (hence the title of this review) as while they are enjoyable to watch they don’t have the kind of emotional impact as episode ten did. But I guess this much is to be expected when you are watching a series cobbled together out of what unadapted material is left over from the first season.
So what do we actually have in this episode? Well the episode takes place after the events of the last few episodes of the first season and is very much a game of spot the references with hat tips being made to the whole funky fairy thing, the ruler game and many other amusing things from both seasons. In terms of the story the first half of the episode is centered around a group expedition to go and collect bamboo shoots. An expedition that Hikage almost gets left out of thanks to her normal aversion to countryside activities in favor of promoting the superiority of city life, a “boy who cried wolf” type of situation. The actual trip itself turned out to be pretty fun for Hikage with her competing against Natsumi and Hotaru’s dog in a digging race. This is more than can be said for Komari though who ends up talking to the bamboo shoots as a result of her making a joke that Renge takes a little too serious.
After this adventure we are once again reminded of the events of the past with the girls paying visits to both their secret base and the bridge they jumped from and a return is made by “the legendary sword”. The manner of the ending of the episode is announced at the end of this section but before this end transpires there are preparations to be made. Preparations that are made in the Koshigaya house, mostly by Natsumi and Komari’s mother. Honestly, I was very much expecting this to be a case of everything going wrong with Komari making very strange culinary suggestions and her Mother being called away to the front door for a lengthy amount of time. This, however, is not the case and instead we get a scene very typical of Non Non Biyori in which absolutely nothing of note happens and when described sounds tediously boring but with the tone, and atmosphere is nothing if not relaxing and calming as one simply feels the passage of time wash over oneself.
The finale of the episode and indeed the season is a flower viewing on the hill with a cherry tree on that has shown up quite a few times. The events of said flower viewing are what we could really expect with a mixture of excitement and relaxation, no one going over the top but everyone having a good time. Silver Link does a good job of portraying this much as it firstly shows this much though typical animation but once things get underway switches to montage of photos taken during the event in a nice way of showing us the passage of time in a way that is more appropriate for covering a long period of time in which much happens but none of it being of much importance. After the montage we get a brief but decidedly un-OVA-like conclusion in which the whole “let’s do this again next year” sentiment. A last-minute but nice non the less end of the series.
In the end, I feel like it should go with out saying that I have enjoyed watching and writing about Non Non Biyori Repeat. As I said back in the beginning it really is a top tier slice of life show and it pulls of a slow paced and relaxing feel wonderfully. As I’ve commented on over the course of the season Non Non Biyori Repeat is an interesting second season as rather than being the direct continuation of the first season it retreads the ground and shows us material that was either cut from the original or, in what I feel is more commonly the case, simply left out due to time limits. And while this may have left the last two episodes being somewhat OVA like I cant really complain about the sudden change in scenery because it is all good quality material and I would ultimately much rather see it like this that it be left out.
So a glowing review of Non Non Biyori from me. Next up, gochuumon_wa_usagi_desu_ka??
I promise that I do actually watch more than just slice of life anime >_<