This is it, folks, we are done! With this episode of Welcome to the Ballroom we say goodbye to everybody and we find out if Tatara and Chi-chan will stay together and dance. It was a good battle and I will talk about how they ranked in the end, so if you don’t want to be spoiled, please read this review after watching the episode…
Japanese Title: ボールルームへようこそ
Heat 24. Welcome to the Ballroom
The battle is on! Tatara and Chi-chan are in the finals and Kugimiya is facing them head-on, not running away or taking them lightly. However, Tatara is doing a lot of thinking during the final dances and he realizes why he is dancing and what made him dance in the first place. He and Chi-chan are practically glowing and then… Well, flashbacks happen and the cup is over with Tatara realizing that it is a miracle that he discovered dancing. The two of them are proud about how they managed to dance through the tournament and the only thing left for them to know is if they managed to win…
Battle of battles
Wow! That was way more intense than any other dancing I have seen so far in the series! They are actually showing some steps, and even though some of them looked funny, I think we know that Tatara owns the Quickstep and that they were showing us how different the Kugimiya-style was compared to the Tatara-style. It was a great moment and while they were dancing and sweating, I got this feeling of excitement that I had been missing for some episodes now. It was awesome to see it come back for the last episode. At the same time, I thought there was a bit of a highlight missing in this episode. With last episode’s miraculous birth of flower-Chi-chan from Tatara’s chest, this episode was… low-key? There were more flashbacks than scenes in the present, at least that’s how I felt, and then there was this other thing…
Tatara finds the answer to life dance
Yeah, so he actually has to ask why he is dancing, why he started it and why he likes it so much because just liking it is not enough, I guess. He has to ask why he would stick to dancing and his answer is strange. I don’t even know if it’s really the answer because it’s a miracle that he discovered dance at all. That’s why he is dancing. Okay, right. I get it. Well, actually I don’t, but if that is his answer and he is happy with it and can unfold his whole potential, then I am fine with it!!
The issue with love
During the dance, Tatara has a tiny wow-moment where he realizes that Chi-chan is the best partner ever and that he can be himself with her and actually discover who he is. And his thankful feelings are expressed with a ‘suki’, which would equate to a ‘like’. But then again, one has to consider that in Japan, you do normally not say ‘aishiteru’ (which is more like ‘I love you’), because it sounds too over the top. So, how are we to interpret this moment, as well as Chi-chan’s joyful kiss on Tatara’s cheek? Not very Japanese behavior, at least not if you don’t seriously like the other person. But then again, we are watching an anime… I don’t know if this hints at some romance between them or if these scenes were just here to show us that they indeed get along well. I am still confused and don’t have an answer, but I will just find some inner peace by saying that Chi-chan is just a bit bold and was happy about their win. That’s why she ended up giving him a kiss. Tatara is always a strange potato, so I will say his ‘suki’ is one he would also say to Kiyoharu and Sengoku, so… I will keep seeing them as partners.
Kugimiya and Idogawa
A short shoutout. One of my favorite pairs! How she tells him to stop smoking because he takes dancing seriously and how he reacted to her… I love this pair. They work well and know each other and I would love to see a special episode with just them. All my previous dislike for Kugimiya is forgotten and buried away. I love Kugimiya!
What stuck most with me were the endless flashbacks. It was a bit boring, to be honest. I usually like them because we get to see back to some of the moments after a year-long series. But this one was only two cours and the moments honestly weren’t that touching or remarkable… We got to see some faces flash by, which is all nice for Tatara. But there were definitely more touching scenes they could have used to make it a good flashback, if they had to have one. Anyway, I think it ended cute and nice if a bit creepy. I mean, Tatara. That smile…
It’s over and done! We got a nice series that had its ups and downs. There were great moments that I will fondly remember and there were stretches of dry sand that I don’t want to think back to. This episode left me with a good feeling, because we got a good final battle and had an exciting ranking. Not to forget the amazing Kiyoharu moment, when he saw Tatara come to the start line and then Sengoku coming back to… I don’t know what he came back for. To make Tatara smile creepily? I was just happy to hear him talk and to see him. Oh, and the hint to a continuation of the story with Tatara and Chi-chan walking into the ballroom together during a future competition also left me wanting for more. The most beautiful moments were the short ones at the end, where we see where our beloved characters are going and how hard they work to improve their dancing. We couldn’t hear a thing, but Mako-chan scolding Gaju? That was amazing and I would have loved to hear it.
With this, my reviews for Welcome to the Ballroom come to an end for now. I will see you again next week for a series review as well as my personal thoughts on a potential second season. I will also talk a bit about favorite characters from beginning to end and how things changed for me personally, so I hope you will read that review as well, as it will have a bit more opinions than the weekly review!
In any case, this episode was good and while there were a lot of things that I predicted, there were many scenes I didn’t see coming at all. In the end, that’s what makes a series good.
NEXT TIME: Series Review for Welcome to the Ballroom