Fall 2018 Anime

Separation Anxiety – ‘Rascal Does Not Dream Of Bunny Girl Senpai’ Episode 9 Review

Separation Anxiety - An Anime QandA Review of 'Rascal Does Not Dream Of Bunny Girl Senpai' Episode 9

What’s the show? Rascal Does Not Dream Of Bunny Girl Senpai, Episode 9.

So how’s this episode? Another arc has commenced, thus we’re introduced to another girl! ~The harem expands!~

It’s not a harem though… I know, I just like saying that.

So who’s this new girl then? It’s Mai’s half-sister Nodoka, a blonde haired pop idol from one of her father’s other marriages–she’s not as successful as Mai though at least in the overall fame department and that is in some part what’s led to this arc’s “puberty syndrome” related dilemma!

Kaede knows the deal.

Oh? And what manner of weirdness has befallen her? Well its affected Mai too is Mai and Nodoka have swapped bodies! (Or is that swapped minds?) Either way Mai is in Nodoka’s body and Nodoka is in Mai and it’s not nearly as sexy as it sounds. So as you can imagine this causes all manner of problems for Sakuta who is now faced with his girlfriend being in someone else’s body and I really feel for the guy, not just for the obvious reasons but it really seems like he can’t catch a break with all these “puberty syndrome” related happenings going on around him–it must be exhausting and indeed you get the sense that it is as he’s not nearly as ~motivated~ as he usually seems despite the obvious vested interest you would assume he would have in fixing things.

Such a piggy bastard!

So what does he do then? Not a lot really, a lot of observing and commenting–I mean he’s trying to get the sisters to a point where they can actually talk about their problems with each other and he ~does~ except that doesn’t really solve anything except put them on non-speaking terms with each other as they admit how much they hate each other. The ‘why’ of these two sisters switching and the ‘how’ of fixing this situation though is not nearly as interesting as the conversations each of them have with Sakuta. The emotional closeness remains with Mai, as does the sparring words but any kind of physical chemistry between them is gone and I think that’s interesting–the way Sakuta looks at Mai in Nodoka’s body is with distanced apprehension and I wonder what kind of impact this is going to have on their relationship, not only in the meantime but afterwards when the the “puberty syndrome” is resolved.

😉

And what about your overall thoughts on the episode? It’s probably my least favourite so far–if only because it does disturb the Mai x Sakuta relationship so tangibly–it’s not like when Sakuta pretended to date Tomoe in Episode’s 4 to 6, that at least was a necessary separation. Here it feels like the universe is conspiring to keep these two apart, which makes me wonder if this isn’t in fact to do with Nodoka’s feelings of inadequacy around her sister’s greater fame and is instead about Mai wanting to be less famous (and therefore be like Nodoka) so she can spend more time with Sakuta. Because with the exception of the first 3 episodes this is the ~most~ screentime Sakuta and Mai have together except Mai’s in someone else’s body. Either that or…

Or release a sex tape? That’d make her more famous than Mai…

Or what? Just a rogue theory I had rattling around my head. Maybe all these things are happening to Sakuta because they are all based around his deep-seated insecurities with his relationship with Mai and that’s why constant hurdles are being thrown in their way. Maybe all these “puberty syndrome” cases are stemming from him and not the girls! But that’s just a theory anyway, I doubt that’s actually the case. I still really enjoyed this episode, Kaede’s little comments were as adorable as ever though I think as far as the ~other girls~ go, Nodoka is probably my least favourite so far–but who knows that could all change with the next episode!

I can still see Mai in that glare.

Previous Rascal Does Not Dream Of Bunny Girl Senpai Reviews:

The Power of Perception – Episode 1 Review
But What If They Forgot You? – Episode 2 Review
The Science of Love – Episode 3 Review
Groundhog Date – Episode 4 Review
Life Is All About The Little Things – Episode 5 Review
Different Types Of Love – Episode 6 Review
A Girl Divided – Episode 7 Review
Reconnecting – Episode 8 Review


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6 comments on “Separation Anxiety – ‘Rascal Does Not Dream Of Bunny Girl Senpai’ Episode 9 Review

  1. They did a really good job with the swap, getting the mannerisms, expressions, and voice inflections right.

    “Well its affected Mai too is Mai and Nodoka have swapped bodies! (Or is that swapped minds?)”
    I was actually thinking about this very thing, and I think that strangely, they have actually swapped bodies, because in the stinger to episode 8, Mai wakes up in her bed as Nodoka, with Mai’s phone next to her (the ‘tell’ that it’s actually Mai). You would think that it would be easier to swap consciousnesses rather than physically changing bodies. And then start wondering if that’s actually a ‘clue’ or if it’s just way overthinking it.

    I certainly don’t think it’s as easy as the problem being all Nodoka, because so far the problems have only affected the person with the problem (*handwaves away Sakuta being caught up aware of Tomoe’s simulation as something to do with Sakuta being more aware of the mechanisms of Adolescence Syndrome*). It probably has something to do with the fact that Nodoka came to crash at Mai’s house: unbidden, likely unwelcome, but also unable to be turned away. But I think it’s an interesting setup, and as usual I really liked all the dialogue.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I really enjoyed this episode. I didn’t really warm to Nodoka but at the same time I liked how her presence shifted relationships and the conversations that have been occurring. Okay, I just like this anime and I’ll probably still say I enjoy it at this point if they just have the cats run around the bed for ten minutes… Actually, that would be pretty enjoyable. Anyway, I liked what you said about the distance Sakuta has drawn between himself and Nodoka in Mai’s body. It wasn’t something I really noted when watching, but reading this I realised how true it was. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the episode.

    Liked by 2 people

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