The final episode of The Price of Smiles! The conclusion to the story, the highlight of everything and yet… surprisingly disappointing? Would I even go as far and say it is cringe-y? Me, who usually is fine with a bit of cringe, as long as it makes me feel good afterwards? We’ll see…
Japanese Title: 笑顔の代価 (Egao no Daika)
Episode 12–The Price of Smiles
Yuki and her small team has made it into the Verde research facility but in the meantime Grandiga has realized that the Princess was up to something and sent Stellas squad after her with the command to keep the Princess from doing whatever she plans to do, even if it costs them their lives! Yuni and Lune are the last ones fighting the squad when Stella manages to sneak into the facility. She finds Layla, who is in the process of starting up the facility so that they can deactivate the chrars. Yuki in the meantime is hiding on the main deck. While Layla explains everything to Stella, the facility is finally ready. As she turns around and recognizes her daughter, a bit of the ceiling collapses. To save Stella, Layla pushes her out of the way, dying in the process. Stella now has to decide whether she trusts Yuki to destroy all the chrars and make their world a better one or if she takes her out to prevent the world they have known from ending.
Turning off the chrars
The most beautiful scene was when Yuki pushed the button and that rainbow light spread all over the planet. The music was pretty, the art was pretty, the whole process was pretty. It was my favorite part of this episode, which is why I want to have it mentioned first.
Stella, I’m your mother
Will she ever find out? It’s fine if Stella never hears that she lost her mother in this way, just after finding her. I don’t need to see Stella sad. However, it’s a bit unfair, because Yuki doesn’t have that luxury… She lost the last person that was someone close to her and sometimes acted like her mother. So while I approve of not telling Stella that her mom is dead, I am utterly disappointed that they took absolutely everyone – every single person! – from Yuki. Poor girl, I am so sorry for her.
It might be a bit of a mean highlight but the fact that this story is over is a bit of a blessing to me. I think there happened way too little for a story with a lot of potential. Even if something happened, it happened in the wrong places and in totally wrong ways…
They had to use all these seconds to film grave stones. Which is okay for a story set in war but really… Can’t we see at least one of the more important characters stay alive? Even Stella’s squad made it out mostly alive. One could argue that Yuni and Lune stayed alive but really, I would have given so much to see Layla or even better, Joshua stay with Yuki…
I am not too sure I like the kitsch ending… The laughing without explaining why or what happened. Where the chaos is coming from. How the country is run now. We had to sit through all this political stuff in the beginning, but in the end they try to give us two girls, who have no connection with each other aside from pushing one button but laugh at each other like best friends. I’m just not in for it.
Towards the end, my reviews might sound a bit harsh, which is mostly my disappointment of having lost a beautiful story of friendship in war who can win over hate… Or whatever else I had imagined after seeing the trailer and the visuals. It is completely my fault and looking back to the whole story now, I am not as disappointed and bitter as I might have sounded through the reviews. The last episode itself was a complete disappointment but had its beautiful scenes. What I thought about the series as a whole will follow in a series review.
Thank you for taking this journey with me! I will see you again for the next season, if you allow, by reviewing Fruits Basket – a series much more up my alley, where I hope to be able to talk more about Japanese culture again! See you there!
1st Episode Anime Impressions: Fruits Basket
The Price of Smiles
Winter 2019 | Anime Info