School Rumble

This episode starts with moving pictures taken from a manga about a weakened basketball team and their only remaining player. Eventually, despite all the difficulties brought by the powerful opposing team, the sole player standing on the court does a Galactic Bomber with the help of his friends. Of course, in the end, they win the game. The main character does a winning pose that Tenma follows stupidly, standing on top of the table.

'Basketball is so cool,' she says. Then appears Yakumo (<3) who says that it's different.

Tenma again says to herself that she'll do well in basketball. We then see Sagano practicing basketball along with other girls. Mikoto and Tenma praise Sagano's skill in basketball – Ichijou then tells them that she was the star player in secondary school. Suou asks why she isn't playing in high school, and Ichijou replies that there isn't a basketball team for girls (just like in many other schools, I may add.) 

The boys' team is then concentrated upon, with Asou losing his guard with a spin move (don't bother if you don't know much about basketball) and does a spectacular lay-up. Ichijou then clarifies that Asou is going to be the next team captain. 

When Harima hears Tenma yelling for Asou to do more cool basketball moves, Harima steals a pass and dunks a ball. It's also cool, but the problem is that he can't go down. Tenma REALLY wants to do the Galactic Bomber now.

At a window above her, Satsuki (she looks like Tatsuki in Bleach) watches them play. She later on talks to Anegasaki Tae to ask her if she'd be willing to coach the girls' basketball team. Luckily, Tani-sensei is also there, and Tae asks Tani if he could introduce her to a capable basketball player in the boys' team. He recommends Asou, of course.

Satsuki and Asou ask Sagano if she's interested in joining the basketball team. She is. Satsuki's full name is Tawaraya Satsuki, btw. Asou then feels unimportant and unneeded in their conversation. 

Tenma tries her best to be recognized by Satsuki. She brings a ball and repeats dunk a lot of times. When Eri says a pointed statement that someone is free, Satsuki, instead of looking or talking to Tenma, talks to Mikoto. Although at first she declines because she has her dojo, she accedes to the pleas of Sagano and Satsuki eventually.

Although Tenma really, really tries to make it obvious that she wants to join, nobody really notices (as I said in a post somewhere, the beauty of School Rumble is in the thick-headed and dense people it contains save for a few like Akira and Yakumo.)

They start practicing then. Lala appears and wants to join the club because Ichijou is there, and to show off, she destroys the whole ring by hitting the ball full force into the board. That's only what she remembered the teachings of Tougou and Harry, and Tae accolades her for her genius. They both thought that the goal of basketball was to hit the board well. (Asou, the patient guy that he is, simply brushes off the idiocy.)

Tae then assigns their nicknames: Boss for Sagano (as she's the best player), Ichi-san for Ichijou, Rookie for Satsuki, D!, no, Miko-chin for Mikoto, and Gori for Lala (… duh …)

Lala seems happy with this nick until she discovers later on what Ichijou was leading to.

They practice: Satsuki acts as the coach – well, technically Tae should be one but she barely knows … about basketball. Tae then perceives the crush Satsuki has on Asou and seemingly puts her thoughts into words. She then quotes the battle master Sun Tzu, but calls her a girl. Tenma, as usual, calls her Son Ko. (Remember S1.)

The usual group of four girls talk about basketball. Mikoto replies that when she saw Satsuki she felt that she had to do her best as well. (This is what makes School Rumble so good yet so unpredictable: there are a whole lot of ambiguous meanings, and I feel Mikoto is developing feelings for Asou. Remember the dance? It seems Satsuki has become competition … and Mikoto likes to compete 😉 )

They then talk about why Satsuki doesn't grow. Tenma then laughs like an idiot and then tells the group that Satsuki seems to have a crush on Asou. Only Eri and Mikoto are surprised (Akira is among the most level-headed and perceptive people of 2-C.)  Tenma wasn't able to practice because she liked staying in bed when she should have gotten up.

It's practice time again – Asou and Mikoto have a one-on-one. Despite missing her shot after a beautiful spin-move (I can't even do a spin move – and I'm a guy. I wonder how hard it would be for a D-sized chest AND a girl like her. o.O ) Asou speaks of her potential and praises her.

Satsuki then challenges Mikoto to a one-on-one game after practice (hmm … jealousy?) There's competition again, but Satsuki clearly loses Mikoto on a spin-move and gets off a beautiful shot that is nothing but net. She called it the quick turn, and acts like a pedant by telling Mikoto that she has still much to learn. (That girl has guts.)

The girls then invite themselves to Asou's new family restaurant. Satsuki doesn't go …

but later on, she still does. She orders a happy meal set, and eats until she passes out.  Mikoto then praises Satsuki for her guts (I personally think that Satsuki has an ulterior motive with letting Asou carry her to her home, which Asou would do seeing as he's pretty much a gentleman.) Instead, Mikoto carries her home because she's going the same way with Asou thanking her for the trouble.

Mikoto praises Satsuki for being unselfish and facing her opponent head-on (which I assume is Mikoto – clearly, Mikoto has some interest in Asou – and the dance they did was simply beautiful.)
She thinks that Satsuki is beautiful and says that she'll do her best too.

The focus returns to Tenma with Yakumo (damn it, SHE'S THE ONE for Harima!) preparing a larger than normal bento for her sister for her activities.  Tenma is then laid off by Tae saying that there are only five players in the team and that she'll have to be a substitute. 

Yakumo then tries to cheer for her sister, but she thinks she's late as Tenma walks away from the gym. Tenma again starts with her … saying that 'only the ace players must practice alone.' 

Back in the gym, the one-on-one practices have begun. Mikoto was noted by Asou to be pretty good, but even then she thinks herself that she couldn't properly move (implying that it was a good defender.) It was Imadori. From nowhere, however, a ball flew and hit Imadori's head. It was Ichijou (personally, I like Ichijou's jealously: it's so unobvious.)

As Imadori tries to shoot (his form is great) Lala blocks his shot. He tries to shot a lot of balls, but Lala blocks them all. (Ben Wallace = Gori = Lala, anyone?) In the end, he fakes, and Lala tries blocking. She's laughed upon by Imadori, but he gets beaten up by her.

Satsuki can't make her shots anymore because she's tense, and Tenma praises herself while doing nothing but swinging in the playground.

Yakumo wakes her sister up again, while cooking a big bento to share with her teammates. As she couldn't be honest with herself, this bento becomes three bentos by tomorrow, and Tenma becomes really, really fat. She still vehemently denies not being in the team, however.

Tougou tries to enter the basketball teams but is denied by the girls, so eventually, he makes up a team of Imadori, Tenma, Harima (of course) and himself.


This is what makes School Rumble great. Despite being a comedy, it doesn't throw away the scalpel-sharp incisiveness it has with human characters and characteristics. This is human nature in all its fatuousness, its seriousness, and beauty. 
I'm sorry for not having screenshots right now – I have school in thirty minutes.  

To tell the truth, I wanted to watch School Rumble about a year ago. If it's a perennial top 10 on AniDB, it must at least be good. I started watching it about two days ago, and right now I have watched all of the second season (so far) and all of the OVAs. I'm still procuring the first season, however.

SR is a great show – it's a great comedy, but for me it has also been a melancholic anime despite its gags and funnies because Yakumo can't end up with Harima. (Right now, in the manga, Harima and Eri are being developed, but man … it's just depressing.)

After being depressed for more than a day I have once more awakened to my senses and realized that it wasn't meant to be, although I liked it very much.

Don't mistake me – I was and still am all for the Onigiri faction. However, as sad as that may be that Onigiri is slowly fading to nothingness, there are a couple of cogent reasons why Onigiri can't happen.

First, Harima has no interest in Yakumo. He's too selfish – I stand corrected for my other posts – in his love for Tenma that he can't let her be free. With otacu's link, however, this will rumble — the manga *is* getting to an important point, but I don't want to spoil myself too much.

Second, even if Yakumo did have an interest in Harima, again, he's too selfish to appreciate both her beauty and her finesse. He's too enshrouded in his own world of Tenma, which, although it sucks for Riceballers, is true.

If Yakumo is more or less as perceptive as Akira, she would have perceived that (I've only seen the OVAs and the second season so far) Harima likes Tenma, and as much as that hurts her if it does – is stifled by her because she is selfless for her sister, and to some extent, Harima.

'If you truly love them – you let them go.'

If in self-denial and obfuscation Yakumo believes that she can let him be free, as painful as it is, she does and says this. Or maybe I'm just reading too much into her character and she really doesn't give a damn about a relationship with Harima. All's fine for her.

I have to rearrive at reality. Unless if in that critical point in the manga right now he really decides to let Tenma go, I hopes he realize how much Yakumo has done for him and doesn't call her as Imouto-san but recognizes her as Yakumo, not shadowing Tenma but knowing her as as herself.

This doesn't makes it easier that Yakumo is incommunicative – as I said in some posts in some other forum, she doesn't convey the messages she wants to convey well, and she may well be in denial that she couldn't even admit that she has feelings beyond admiration for Harima, if she does.

I'll be pretty sad if the story doesn't shift that way, but most likely it wouldn't, seeing how Jin builds Harima up with Eri. Perhaps Yakumo will be alone forever … I hope that in the future that can change, because I really think that Yakumo is for Harima. I believe that Yakumo can temper his idiotic side with that charm and intelligence, and I believe that Harima can let her experience what true happiness is – putting her first above all and realize that love is not selfish. At all.

I believe Harima can discover tranquility with Yakumo, and Yakumo will perhaps develop a better view of the world with Harima. But that's what I believe.

Other people believe otherwise – but that's them.

It was a post somewhere out there by me, but I stick with my Riceball pairing. It may fade away, it may disappear into thin air, but believe me – it will be among the greatest romances in anime if that comes to life, I mean a romance between Yakumo and Harima, IMO.

I think and hope it will come to life. Really.