Ep 15 – Liar

A difficult choice for Tsubaki is seemingly made for her and she’s forced once again to confront how she feels about Kousei. An unexpected new character literally falls into Kousei’s lap and further complicates his life while he struggles with visiting Kaori.

young Tsubaki lifting up a box to see her mud balls all dried up.

Pretty sure this was me as a kid. Saving a clay sculpture I made only to have it crack and break when I wanted to show someone. It’s sad but adorable how upset she gets, and just really sweet when Kousei reaches out to pet her head to comfort her.

Tsubaki turning to go the other way as Kousei approaches a hallway corner at school

The way Tsubaki’s expression changes as she hears Kousei talking is great, especially the momentary happiness when he says he might not be able to test into the far away school. Of course, he’ll just go to Europe if that happens. Tsubaki isn’t ready to confront him about that, and is actively avoiding him.

Saito fake chopping Tsubaki's head when she apologizes to him

While she can’t seem to figure out which way to go, Saitou chooses his path. I can’t blame this guy one bit for breaking up with her. He wants a relationship with someone that likes him, and he sees that Tsubaki isn’t really happy with him. It might have hurt Tsubaki in the moment, but it needed to happen.

Tsubaki standing alone on the beach looking up at the moon

I thought this shot was really interesting. In her vision she’s back on the beach where she walked with Kousei, but she’s the only one there. The others have moved on, but she’s the only one frozen in time. She desperately tries to hold onto those memories they shared as if their lives would never change.

Kousei and Tsubaki sitting together on the piano bench against a stark white background

What Kousei says to her is kind of predictable, but it’s just really sweet regardless. He’s been around Tsubaki long enough to know she doesn’t open up easily. The best thing he can do is not let her push him away, and passively remind her that he’s there. “If you don’t care whether I stay or not, then I’ll stay with you.”

Blue light shining into the music room where Kousei and Tsubaki are sitting

Tsubaki knows that the statement is a lie. Even if says he’ll stay with her, she will lose him to distance or to Kaori. At least in realizing this, Tsubaki understands that she has to decide how important Kousei is to her and make her move.

A green background with polka dots showing a cartoonish black cat and crow in front of Kousei

Kousei makes some pretty obvious excuses not to see Kaori. Is it fear over what he might see, or feeling like it’s not his place to visit?

Nagi collapsed on Kousei after she falls out of the tree

If I’m being honest, Nagi Aizato’s introduction is kind of strange. A lot of viewers don’t like her part in the story and see it as something of a distraction. Keep in mind, though, that having Kousei trying to teach someone shows us a side of his relationship to the piano that we haven’t seen. Hiroko is the one who assigns him to do it, after all, when he needs to practice for competitions. There must be some reason she thinks it’s important.

Kousei holding the phone away from his ear as Kaori shouts at him

Well, he almost made it to her room but the sound of Watari’s voice scares him away. Kousei still feels like he’s intruding, but also you have to wonder how he feels seeing Kaori and Watari together. She seems to have a sense of what’s going on when she calls him, though. No explanation as to how she got his number or anything. Just goes right into talking about canelés.

Kousei crouching in front of a cat while it eats his dropped canele

When he tries to get close to Kaori, he’s reminded that she likes Watari. When he ignores her, she approaches him herself – just like a cat. That’s what he loves about her.

Kousei is a cat person.

Kaori screaming in anger when she can't stand up

This was hard to watch. Kaori being her bright and cheerful self moments before screaming in frustration and hitting her legs when they won’t move. It’s scary to think about what’s happening to her, and sad to see how her condition is making her act.

Featured Music

This episode uses a couple of soft melancholy tracks to accompany the more emotional moments, but my track for today is different. Omotta Yori Ooki na (Bigger than I thought) is played when Nagi meets Hiroko, and gives a sense of the more playful nature of that part of the episode. Plus I needed to save the others for other episodes. In fact, one of the reasons I’m posting this a little late today is that I needed to go back through the subsequent episodes and make sure I wasn’t burning a track that I wanted to use later.

This track sounds frivolous and easy going, using a keyboard and other percussion instruments as opposed to the strings and piano of the ‘deeper’ tracks. Still, I feel like there’s a bit of mischief in the way its melody repeatedly leads up before abrupt stops. It reminds me of the way Nagi was pranking Kousei, and I think works well as her character theme at this point.

Noteworthy Motif

Takeshi walking away from a trash bin he kicked over

A brief scene to keep us up to date with what the rivals are doing highlights something important about them. Takeshi’s mirage was Kousei walking away from him while he chased behind. He always wanted Kousei to turn around and acknowledge him. Emi sees Kousei ahead of her as well, but wants him to keep looking ahead so he can see when she surpasses him.

Emi is confident in herself, and that confidence pays off in this latest competition. Takeshi’s behavior seems to indicate that she beat him, and his response is anger. In general, Takeshi responds negatively when he can’t prove himself, which is something which will be touched on later.

That’s all I have for today, now let me know what you think! If you missed one of the episode posts, catch up on the re-watch party at this link.

9 thoughts on “Ep 15 – Liar

Add yours

  1. I was almost breathing a sigh of relief that nothing too shocking happened in this episode (except ofcourse Tsubaki’s sad moments, but I will got to those in a moment), and then that ending came. I just kept staring at the screen after the end credits had already finished. I still don’t know exactly what is wrong with Kaori…but I do know now that this is very serious. It was such a sad and heartwrenching moment…the total frustration over her not being able to do something as simple as getting up and walking. I really felt so sad while watching that.
    As for Tsubaki’s sad moments, that also definitely was not watch. I really don’t blame Saitou at all. Love has to go both ways…and in this relationship it really did not go both ways. As sad as it was…I think it was the only logical step for Saitou to take. I hope Tsubaki will get the courage to tell Kousei her true feelings.
    Lastly the new character introduction was definitely strange…but not alltogether unpleasant. I think it is great that we are going to see another side of Kousei, and I am really looking forward to how this will develop. That, and I just think that Hiroko probably has a very good reason for doing this. She is definitely not stupid 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That reaction sounds about right at this point in the series. Like they never let you relax considering what’s going on with Kaori. Seeing her never let anything stop her or get in her way before, then being unable to even walk was really shocking, and I bet that’s what was going through her mind then too.

      I think Saito realized breaking up was the only logical thing for Tsubaki too. He tried to make himself the bad guy and even gave her a story about another girl he met (she may not even be real) because he sees that it’s hurting her trying to focus her attention somewhere else because she feels like she’s getting further from Kousei. Getting her to admit to her feelings is a big step though, and like Watari said it’s something she has to do on her own.

      I’m glad you’re not disappointed yet with Nagi. The whole arc with her is kind of interesting and as you suspect, there is something important for Kousei in all this. Before, the piano was a way to help his mom, or to accompany Kaori. Teaching another person will turn it into something else.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. To be honest, Tsubaki has not improved much for me. At first I felt bad that she has to struggle with unrequited love. But her emotional infantilism, which is put on clear display when she starts playing on the children’s playground, is very off-putting. Her inability to be honest and her childish remarks claiming that it doesn’t matter if Kousei is here or not also irk me.

    On the other hand, I rather like Nagi. At least she has some sort of excuse for her mindset considering that she’s quite a bit younger than Kousei. Sometimes the introduction of younger characters can be disruptive to a show, but when several individuals of the main cast are already childlike in mentality, the breath of fresh air isn’t as jarring and may actually prove to be welcome.


    1. I can understand that point of view on Tsubaki and emotional infantilsm isn’t a bad way to put it. She’s always hid her feelings behind exercise and sports I think though, so going to blow off some steam at the playground seems right up her alley.

      Her remarks hint at a problem that both she and Kousei created. Namely that she was never the weak one in their relationship. So when she shows weakness or vulnerability, her first reaction is to push him away rather than seek his comfort. It is childish, but again, consistent with her character.

      Will be interesting to see what you think of Nagi. She is really very juvenile, and she isn’t supposed to be that much younger than the other kids. Still, I find her to be an interesting character.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Poor Tsubaki! ❤ She needs a hug. Gah, the OST with her walking behind Saito, pulls at the heartstrings. But gosh, that was such an awkward way to break up with her! Bringing up another girl? Should've led with the..this isn't working out bit first. LOL.

    Dammit Kousei…if you don't care if I'm with you or not, then i'll just stay, you're stuck with me….damn..Tsubaki. that girl probably feels more complicated with Kousei being nice and him not realizing it. I don't think she really means it when she says she hates music; she does love listening to him play but yeah hates that music takes him away from her….but, I wonder if Kousei could ever see her more than the sister/childhood friend. They'd be kinda cute. lol

    also, Aizawa's sister…so cute…but her hate for kousei; it's because of her brother right? They didn't address it quite yet in this episode…ahh and Kousei is a coward for not visiting Kaori. lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I dunno. I think Saito really wanted it to work and he cares about Tsubaki, so saying there’s another girl is kind of like admitting it’s his fault that it didn’t work. Tsubaki knows that’s not true though. She needs a hug but she needs it from the one person who would never realize that.

      Her relationship with Kousei is definitely complicated as is her relationship with the things he loves. Their being together would take some work.


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