Plot: Akane and Miyuki try to increase Yayoi’s confidence in her drawings by entering her in a poster contest for the school’s Clean Up Week. Yayoi agrees, and, with her friends’ help, she gets a great poster done. However, it only earns an honorable mention in the contest. She’s mocked by the winner, takes her picture off of the wall and runs off.
Believing herself to be no good, Yayoi sits on the steps outside with her poster in her hands. A new enemy named Akaoni shows up to create a Bad End for everyone. Cure Happy and Sunny show up, but are overpowered by Akaoni’s Akanbe of Yayoi’s crumpled up poster.
Can Yayoi find it within herself to break free of her self-doubt and bring peace to the world?
Breakdown: I have been drawing for as long as I can remember. I also have about as much confidence in my work as Yayoi does. I’d rather have my drawings in private than show them off because I am very sensitive to criticism (irony?) and I easily lose my drive to draw when I feel my art isn’t hitting the mark.
I am also very shy, love superheroes and am a little bit of a crybaby.
In a lot of ways, I connect with Yayoi. I especially like the route they went with her story. She didn’t even just get second or third place – she got ‘honorable mention,’ which is basically the default ‘participation’ trophy. I think this is important because it shows that it’s not just never giving up in the face of your own self-doubt, it’s also about never giving up when you do come face to face with the failure you were so afraid of in the first place.
There’s also a nice brief line of Yayoi’s when Akaoni starts mocking her work. She says she knows she’s no good, but she still really enjoys drawing. That is a great starting point of a lesson that they never fully complete here.
If you love something, do it. Don’t beat yourself up over whether you’re the best or not. You shouldn’t even have to feel compelled to show it off. Even if you’re more comfortable doing it in private, enjoy it. Make it your own. Don’t let anyone take it from you just because you fail or because some people are jerks.
Sadly, though, I found this episode to be boring otherwise because it feels like we’re treading water with the ‘never give up’ and ‘friendship is everything’ messages. Seeing as how we’re only at episode three, treading water already is a bit alarming.
Akaoni is also nothing to write how about. He’s a stupider and less intimidating Wolfrun. It’s a step down, if anything. Also, while the design of today’s Akanbe is a little interesting (A superhero with a broom for a weapon) it’s also a bit goofy that today’s Akanbe is made of a crumpled up piece of paper. We went from a house, to a volleyball to a piece of trash.
Cure Peace is a little cool with her lightning and how she seems to have a special ability to summon a bolt of purifying lightning when scared, but her transformation sequence is on the boring side and so is her attack animation.
I look forward to Yayoi’s character development as time goes on. I hope she immerses herself more into her role as a superhero and busts out of her shell more often. As it stands, though, her debut wasn’t all that great. Not bad, but I still wasn’t terribly invested.
Next episode, it’s Cure March’s debut!
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