Episode 3 ‘Debut!!’
Hane passes the licensing exam. She even makes a road debut as the subtitle says.
Let’s go over the scene in which Hane purchases a motorbike.
Hane finds a used motorbike shop, Nicoichi Motors in a magazine. The shop seems to have pretty good deals, but Onsa somehow refuses to go there.
They get there anyway but to find out it was a dodgy shop, altering odometers for false mileage reading and hiding the fact that a motorbike was once submerged in an accident.
On top of that, it is actually owned by Onsa’s family.
I knew Rin got a hand-me-down motorbike from her father, but I was always wondering why Onsa owned it from the beginning of high school. Now, I get why…her family owns a motorbike shop.
Hane’s eyes become really sparkly when she spots the same model as her training motorbike, CB400S SF in pink.
Onsa tries to persuade Hane to shop somewhere else, but Hane doesn’t listen simply because she trusts Onsa when it comes to motorbikes. In return to this, Onsa promises to do all the service of SF to make it perfectly safe.
At a glance, it seems like a nice moving story…but it is quite funny to watch how the story continues ignoring the fact that they are dealing with the dishonest shop, owned by Onsa’s family.
Anyway, Hane picks her motorbike.
During the process, they find out that Rin’s father also bought Rin’s 400KATANA from this shop. This gives an additional blow to the emotional but hilarious Episode 2.
By the way, I wasn’t sure how realistic it would be for high school students to buy their own motorbikes. However, it seems to be around ¥360000 for the same model second hand, according to a search online. Nicoichi Motors is supposed to be a budget shop, so it may not be impossible to pay off if it’s over 36 payments as mentioned in the anime.
After that, they all go on a long-wished ride. (Just like at the game of chicken, Hijiri sits in Butler Hasegawa’s sidecar.)
Rin doesn’t come along with them since she is not a member of the motorbike club, although she secretly follows the group.
As she rides, she sings ‘Song of KATANA’, flashes her passing lights while saying ‘fire the missiles!’ and does all sorts of other strange behaviors.
Rin doesn’t know this, but they all wear a wireless headset attached to their helmets, so everything Rin says is clearly audible to everyone.
Rin pretends to show up at a parking area where everyone is by accident. She wants to be a part of this group, but she finds it hard to admit it.
She is told that everyone knows about her weird behaviors on her bike. Her face goes red from embarrassment, but happily joins in a group photo.
It was the first touring in this anime, but the story was more focused on Rin for her ‘not-quite-honest’ character, rather than the main character Hane’s real road riding experience.
In addition, they wear thick jackets and pants for riding. (Raimu is always in her uniform.) Interestingly, Onsa wears denim over a white flared skirt.
She seems to be a real tomboy, but she might actually have a girly side in her when you see her white headband and skirt like this.
So, they successfully complete their first touring, but now the club faces its biggest problem.
Shockingly, they find out that the motorbike club is actually not an official club approved by their high school.
In fact, it was privately established by Raimu. Apparently, she occupied a vacant room at school and put out the motorbike club signboard outside.
The members ask the school for an approval, but there is one person who refuses to give an approval. It is the principal at Okanoue High School.
She was once a student at this school and a member of the motorbike club 20 years ago. Unbelievably, Raimu was already there as a senior student.
In a manga or anime with a school setting, you sometimes come across a character whose age is really hard to guess, even though she/he is supposed to be at school age. However, it’s is kind of cool that they openly mention that Raimu was at school 20 years ago.
When the principal participated in a motorbike race as a member of the club, she was assisting Raimu as her mechanic.
However, she made a crucial mistake, which was quite possibly one of those simple mistakes you make while you are young and inexperienced. She excessively tuned Raimu’s motorbike, which caused a fire on the motorbike followed by an explosion and Raimu got blown away by this.
The principal insists on its disapproval saying, ‘there is no way that I approve the motorbike club for high school girls, who are basically reckless creatures!’
The principal has grown out of such a reckless creature, but Raimu promises to this person, who used to be a junior member of the club, that ‘she protects the club members’…silently.
The principal issues a student ID card for Raimu (somehow, she hasn’t been an admitted student until then), and the club gets an approval as well for fulfilling the required number.
How old is Raimu? How come she stays on at school without an official admission?
Is it true or just a joke that she weighs ‘as much as three apples’ as the information on the official website?
Is she ever going to take her helmet off during the anime?
It may appear that Raimu has revealed some of her identity, but she still seems pretty mysterious. I’m sure that the promise she made to protect the club is true to her heart.
We can’t forget to mention Rin. She is really close to make her dream come true to be a member of the club when she is asked to put her name down on the member list. However, it’s actually just to make up the number, not for the genuine membership. To make matters worse, because Raimu becomes an official member by being admitted to school, Rin ends up missing out to become a part of it.
I wonder if Rin will ever get to be a member of the motorbike club?
See you next time!