The final episode. Sakura Quest marks my longest episode review series here on Anime Corps, and my second longest since I started writing weekly episode reviews for shows. Granted I had ups and downs when trying to watch and write about the episodes. To me, it was worth it. This show certainly has had a lot going for it. From what it wanted to do, to what it really did. There are certainly lessons that can be taken from this series, making it different from others. But like all shows, there is always an end. Time to focus on Sakura Quest for the last time.
So, with the idea of a sister town in the last episode in mind, Kadota asks Mr. Sandals if he could contact the mayor of his hometown. It turns out the mayor is in Japan on vacation. While the festival is going on Kadota rushes off to go get the mayor, which leads him into another town nearly getting arrested for scaring people with his mask. Anyway, those two start to rush back to Manoyama.
While they are doing that, the festival is still ongoing. Yoshi is helping any way she can, and even gets a surprise run in with her parents and sister. She also runs into the camera man, who went behind his boss’s back to film the festival, so he can show the real festival on TV. Granted it is a late night spot, but he wants to make it up to the town.
Then it turns out Kadota ran out of gas on his way back. This leaves Shiori and a few others to rush off to get him. Maki is still preparing for the play, and Riri does plan to make a deal with her grandma is everything goes well.
Due to high traffic, the police man, Kindaichi, he knows all the roads in Manoyama, so he takes them through the back roads behind the kingdom. He even hits it off with the makeup artist. (Good for him)
When Kadota returns, well, a little reference to how he destroyed the festival 50 years ago, kicks in. But he did say he wants to wake up the town, even now he wants to. So, he had no plans to unintentional ruin the day.
The play kicks off to end the festival.
When it is all over, in typical Sakura Squad fashion, it’s party time. Kadota and the mayor hit it off rather well, so, although this is the last mentioning of it, a sister city thing might happen.
Riri is drunk. This has little importance, I just wanted to point it out.
Anyway, the girls then begin to reflect on the past year and where they would like to go next. Sanae wants to open up a shop, well consulting office. Maki still plans to do plays, mostly with folklore. Riri drops the bombshell, and not so surprisingly, reveals that she wants to go see the world. She does plan on coming back, but she did ask her grandma if the play goes well, then she will go. Yoshi then knows what she wants to do.
The following day it is over. A year has gone by, and Yoshi talks to Kadota. How they both changed and both know what they will do next.
Yoshi goes through giving a speech to end her queen-ship. Then Kadota reveals that the kingdom is now disbanded.
Yoshi goes onto her next journey, as every cheers her on. Even a subtle throw back to that mistake in episode one, due to Kadota misspelling Yoshino’s name. She does plan to go back, after all she does feel like Manoyama is her second hometown.
Sometime later, Yoshi goes to another town to help out. Maki continues to work for her theater group. Riri gets ready to go. While Shiori continues with the tourism board and Sanae opens her shop. With that, the show ends.
It’s honestly hard to believe it is over. They did change the town little by little. During Kadota’s speech he did say it is thanks to Yoshino that they could realize their town is not meant to get rid of outsiders, but accept them. The town plans to continue to change and grow.
The final felt open-ended. There was the fact we do not know if the town was absorbed. But there was also the mentioning of how it was just the beginning of a new story. I really liked that. On one hand, it does not give a set ending, however, it did give just enough of an ending for what they accomplished in that year. It does not matter if Yoshino is part of the change or not, it will still go on.
This show had a lot of moments. They were all for the town. After all this time, it still dealt with the town. It however, did not matter this time on what they could do as a whole, but rather the here and now. How their hard work not only changed the town, but themselves too.
It certainly was a wonderful sendoff. Minor things were ended, possibly. There was last episode how Sandals found what he has been looking for, that connection to his great grandparents. There was Kindaichi possibly getting a date. At least his friends plan to do another singles retreat in the summer. Plus, there was more.
When the show began no one really liked Yoshino, but by the end everyone accepted her. In this case, she is the dragon. However, just like the story, the dragon had to go, but the lesson would stay. The series in a way been hinting at this all along and ended it in just the right way.
Overall Enjoyment: 95/100
I am uncertain if I will be reviewing a show next season here. However, the other members of Anime Corps will be. So, keep an eye out for those posts.
As always I hope you enjoyed.
Anime Corps has plenty of other things from reviews, editorials, and more to check out, all from other writers.
I am mostly the editor here, but only my personal blog, The Reviewer’s Corner, I have more weekly reviews and a list series. That is here.
Until next time.