What They Say:
Basho the poet, only speaks using haikus. What will happen next?
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
With the show having started off strong for me with the way it introduced each of the new characters and ran with it episode by episode in telling its own story, it’s started to falter just a little bit in the middle part of its run because it’s using less familiar characters, at least to this western viewer. With Gennai done previously, this episode brings Basho into the game, a poet that I’ve had very limited experience with in my anime, manga and Japanese history exposure.
Originally from the mid 1600′s, Basho’s time in the present has her in seemingly similar circumstances in a way as she’s found herself with a pretty poor family that has a rundown restaurant/cafe with a limited Italian style menu. Basho’s meeting these people has the young daughter being helpful in how she gets her some food and tries to find her a place to stay with them in the interim. It’s similar to the cafe but for Basho, the rundown motel has its own strange charms as it feels like in a lot of ways it could have stepped out of the 1600′s, at least in terms of the atmosphere it gives off. A lot of what we get here is Basho talking aloud and in her mind about what she’s experiencing and seeing, and though it’s a bit hard to see in the subtitles, a lot of it is done through haikus.
Basho’s arrival does work well for the cafe though because in a fit of boredom, she ends up cleaning the place from head to toe when nobody is looking, turning it from a dump into a beautiful place with some real charm. Basho’s nearly thrown out at first, but it works in her favor as everyone realizes the changes that have been made and how it can improve their lives. It’s a bit heartwarming and inspiring for those that worked there as their lives change in small ways because of this cleaning, a deep cleaning to be sure, but one that helps to cast away the cobwebs in their own minds. The rebirth of the cafe isn’t huge, though it gets some coverage, but the real treat here is that we do see a more interactive Nobunaga towards the end. Rather than the usual one scene and done kind of approach, she takes more interest in Basho here as she takes her away on the journey. It’s another curious scene that leaves you wanting to know more of what Nobunaga is up to.
Sengoku Collection has a very laid back episode here, which plays well after the kind of wacky but emotional episode that Gennai gave us, as we see the very mellow Basho work through her time in the present at the cafe. Her nature is one that definitely has her looking at the world and her surroundings and commenting on it in a particular way, so seeing her help the staff and cafe itself through this rebirth works well. While some of the samurai have made a huge impact since coming to this present day timeline, she had a smaller impact but one that’s just as important overall because she did change lives. It’s a sweet and simple episode and one that’s definitely enjoyable to watch unfold.
Streamed By: Crunchyroll
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70″ LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.