Episode 2 of After the Rain (Koi wa Ameagari no You ni) is here and it features an unexpected turn of events! It is not one of the fast-paced series, but it is a lot of fun to watch after a hard day of work because it helps you calm down and soothes your heart with a sweet first-love story.
Japanese title: 青葉雨
Episode 2 – Raindrops on Green Leaves
Another calm day of work at the family restaurant for Akira. That is until Yoshizawa is introduced as the new kitchen help and everything seems to go downhill from there. When a customer forgets his phone at the restaurant, Akira runs after him despite her injured leg and as soon as she is back at the restaurant, she collapses. Tencho immediately drives her to the hospital and gets told to rest due to light inflammation. Akira doesn’t seem too bothered by it, especially as more and more good things unfold thanks to her injury. First, Tencho carries her into the car and drives her all the way to the hospital and then she even meets him close to her house, because he wanted to say sorry to her mother for not taking care of her! The two of them end up in a cafe close by where Akira confesses more of her feelings than she ever thought she would…
Running despite the pain
That running scene was so powerful! When she took off to bring the customer his phone, it was just so beautiful. It explained so well how she must feel about running. All we know so far is what Yoshizawa told the others in the kitchen. She is a fast runner and she is good and he likes her because of it. But we didn’t get to see much about what Akira thinks of running and if she is sad about the accident. To be honest, she didn’t look like she was suffering a lot so far. However, in this scene we understood how much she must love running, just by how they drew her in the scene. Her hair flying around, her determination to reach the customer in time… It was a beautiful work of art and probably the most important scene of the episode since it let us take a look at her emotions without her spelling it out or saying anything. The scene actually fits very well with her personality because Akira is supposed to be unreadable and misunderstood, an important detail for my next highlight.
Blurting it out
She gets one private meeting with Tencho and the first thing she has to tell him is that she likes him? We can only be happy that he thinks of himself as a disgusting old guy and like that interprets her words totally wrong. So she said ‘I like you’ and because Akira often has a hard look on her face and doesn’t smile much, Tencho thought she hates him. We can hear the weight that lifts from his shoulders when he hears that she likes him. And we can probably hear the weight settle on Akira’s shoulders since she now has to deal with the frustration of having said something very important which took some courage but which he didn’t interpret right. How will she ever work up the courage to say it again? Bad enough to confess your love one time…
He’s a walking disaster and I love him so far. Yui’s reaction when she saw him was also precious. Also, did they imply that Akira doesn’t know who he is? In any case, I thought he loosens the story up so much and I like him.
It was a running gag in this episode, whenever a plate (or 100 of them) fell down or somebody was loud in the back, the waitress would say ‘My apologies’ to excuse the disruption and loudness. If you translate the phrase quite literal, it says ‘(I/We) did something rude’. Though I don’t know about other countries, where I am from, nobody ever says sorry for being loud or dropping something, if they don’t drop it on you or close to you. Maybe in the fancy high-class restaurants, but as I explained in the first review, this is a mere family restaurant and pretty much on the other side of the spectrum than a high-class restaurant.
In Japan, this is just how it is. If you are the customer, then you are the king and quite literally at that. You can do and say whatever you want and the waiters and waitresses will be very understanding. And if they do not say sorry for such a simple disruption, they will probably have problems with the manager or owner. It is like if you go into one of the izakaya here (something that could be compared to a bar that also serves food), pretty much all of the waitresses and waiters will scream a ‘welcome!’ at you. The one person showing you to your table would go ‘A guest has arrived!’ and they are all supposed to welcome you for a simple reason: you are the one paying their paychecks. Kind of. With this kind of mindset, they try to please you and scream a welcome at you like that. Or disturb you by saying sorry for a disruption you might not even mind. It takes some getting used to, but after getting used to it, it actually is a nice piece of culture.
Send Tencho Power
To be honest, I can’t tell you what exactly Tencho was chanting before he started to carry Akira when she collapsed after running. Was it buddhistic? Was it something else? Did he ask for power? For good healing? My assumption here is that he was asking for strength to carry her and that’s why he was chanting to one of the gods of either Buddhism order Shintoism or whatever else it could be. And that’s also all I know about it. So sorry for the useless explanation. If you know anything, please let me know in the comments!
The romance in this story is written so well. Akira is so much in love for the first time in her life, and even though it is with a guy that could be her father, I am nowhere near being disgusted. Yes, sometimes she is creepy, and yes, I might not understand what is great about the Tencho, but that’s not the theme anyway. It’s about her and her first love and a bit about how he deals with the feelings she has for him.
Also, I need to say that I got used to the voices. I thought the voice acting was a bit off in the first episode, but in this second one I got used to most of the stuff, and more importantly, I can now hear that Yui for example just talks really funny and…probably cute? For whoever might like it. All is well and I am looking forward to the next episode!
Expectations for the next episode
I do hope Akira will make a better attempt at confessing her love. Do not give up, Akira! Fight the awkward! Show him your love!
I also expect to see more from Yoshizawa, as his first love is Akira and he even started working part-time for her. Oh, and wouldn’t it be nice if we got to know the Tencho a bit better?