Even though this anime Kono Aozora Ni Yakusoku Wo came out in the year 2007, I wasn’t really interested in watching it, citing boring and dull reasons from the review online that I briefly skimmed through. Even the fansubbing group who were subbing the series didn’t finished and dropped it. Not until recently when another fansubbing group picked this up, it started to stir an interest in me. I don’t know, that boring reason then didn’t seem applicable anymore.
Based on yet another adult PC game of the same name, I guess it is a good thing that I decided to check out this drama-romance series. Harem? Yeah, if you look at it in a way. However, there are no hentai elements, just a little bit of fanservice. The setting is on an isolated island off Japan called Minamisakou Island. The island has seen better times and was booming due to an aerospace company, Demizugawa Heavy Industries Corporation, setting up factories and labs across the island. Thus the main reason why the island was once thriving with life. But recently the company has decided to close down its operations on this island and thus the population of Minamisakou dwindling as the years pass by. Slowly, everyone is leaving the island in search for better prospects elsewhere.
On this island, there is an old school building remodelled into a dormitory called Tsugumi Dorm, and this is where our main story sets in. As expected, the dorm isn’t very populated either. It is currently occupied by students Wataru Hoshino (the only male living in the dorm), Umi Hayama (Wataru’s shy childhood friend who takes on several duties in the dorm like cooking), Naoko Asakura (the assertive double-faced student council president), Miyaho Rokujou (granddaughter of the early founders of this island and dorm), Shizu Fujimura (a quiet but sly loli) and a young teacher Saeri Kawashima (her child-like and scatterbrain personality amuses me). There is a rule that the dorm has to maintain at least 5 people or else it will be closed down. Well, seems a little ‘healthy’ at the moment. However, come next March, Naoko, Umi, Miyaho and Shizu will be leaving the dorm and island and thus will be separated and the dorm to be shut down. Therefore, they are determined to spend their last days together.
This is how I see the series being played out. Though there are 13 episodes, the series concentrates and dedicates 2 episodes per girl, in which you’ll see how Wataru interacts and helps that particular girl with whatever issues or problems they are facing. Lucky guy, eh? Don’t worry, Wataru is a nice, sporting and thoughtful guy although on occasions he gets a little cheeky and mischievous. You can guess which girl they’re focusing on since the episode title will be named after her. Furthermore, the mid-intermission shows a still picture of that particular girl sitting on the steps or walking her way towards the lighthouse. Sometimes I’m confused of the time line of the story as to whether that episode is current or in the past. But in my opinion, some are reminiscent of Wataru thinking of those times with that girl after they have left the dorm. So for those of you who already have doubts that this will be a yawn fest, skip it. I’m sticking around to find out more on what drama this island has to offer. At least to determine whether this series is overall boring or not.
Episode 1 focuses on Rinna Sawaki. Who is she? She is the newcomer to Tsugumi Dorm. Her appearance is baffling because Wataru too wonders who they ended up in such position. You see, Wataru wakes up to find one morning a girl (Rinna) sleeping next to him in her undies. Yikes! Fanservice cue. Hopefully nothing extreme happened the night before. Then Umi walks in as Wataru tries to prevent her from seeing but too late. He ‘shuts her up’ before the other dorm members could raise any suspicions (they’re having breakfast below by the way). Soon Rinna wakes up and just like any other girl who notice herself not fully clothed when waking up, freaks out and is upset. Understandably, she may think Wataru has done something funny to her last night, so excuse her cold and rude attitude. She slaps Wataru before taking her clothes and leaping out of the window. Holy sh*t! It’s the second floor! Don’t worry, Rinna didn’t break any bones because she’s quite athletic.
As Wataru wonders who that girl might be, he soon learns that not only she is the new resident of the dorm but a transfer student in his class. To make matters worse, Rinna’s cold and indifferent attitude too is staying. Though she too would be leaving the island in a year’s time, she has no intention of making any friends, especially those from the dorm. It was pretty funny to see Wataru making a loud guess that the entry of the new transfer student is Rinna but initially turned out to be a lively girl, Akane Mitamura (she can’t stop talking and shaking her head when she does so!). Then of course, Rinna turns up as the 2nd transfer student the next day. Do you feel like wanting to punch her arrogant attitude of not wanting to introduce herself? Besides finding out that the rest of the student council members are also the members of Tsugumi dorm, Umi wants to befriend Rinna and even plans a welcoming party for her but of course that b*tch doesn’t give a damn and shrugs her. Anyway they still proceed with it and hoping that Rinna would turn up. Well, she did. But more like she’s going for a walk. She still gives that I-don’t-wanna-be-your-friend speech which brought Umi to tears. It was heartbreaking to see her cry. That heartless b*tch. Since it has come to this, Wataru declares a challenge to her and says that he will make Rinna part of their circle of friends no matter what. Her reply: Try it if you can, buster. This is sure heating up.
So in episode 2, we see Wataru at a cafe run by an elder pal of his, Takashi Mitamura. We learn from Takashi that Wataru was with Rinna at the cafe and after a few drinks, they left. Hmm… Then with the annual local marathon coming up, Wataru suggests to settle their challenge through it. Though Rinna is a runner too, but Wataru is last year’s defending champion! Though he may need a little practice. If Wataru wins, Rinna must join them even for meals and if Rinna wins, Wataru will leave the dorm. The bet is on. The day comes and Wataru seems tired because he has been relentlessly practising day and night (also some last minute supplementary exam). Rinna is worried that he may be in no condition to run and advices him to call it off and do their challenge another time but that guy is persistent and he is going to stay true to his word. Because of that, Rinna doesn’t care too. The rule is just simple, the first one through the finish line wins, no matter the outcome. The race starts and it seems Wataru is having a hard time keeping up. He soon collapses and Rinna only realizes too late when she is quite a distance ahead that Wataru isn’t behind her. Then Saeri and Shizu popped up and said something which made Rinna feel guilty and responsible for Wataru. Though Rinna is near the finish line, to everyone’s surprise, suddenly Wataru shows up and crosses it. He wins! Though he is disqualified (for taking a shortcut) and later suspended temporarily from school by Saeri, Wataru did mentioned to Rinna that it’s a no-holds-barred race and that anything goes. Thus technically Wataru wins the bet and Rinna has no choice but to be their friends. So I guess being part of the dorm isn’t that bad as Rinna sheds her cold behaviour and displays a more friendly behaviour. Now that’s more like it.
The next girl to focus on in episode 3 is Miyaho. As we know that her grandpa is the founding family of the Demizugawa company (who recently passed away last year), she is also the school’s director but only in name and is the landlady for Tsugumi Dorm. You could say that by this fact, she is a rich girl. I find her habit of counting the steps up towards Tsugumi Dorm to be weird. In this episode, Miyaho enlists Wataru’s help to do a research on her late grandpa which she has little knowledge of. Miyaho plans to put the fruits of her research as an exhibit for the upcoming school festival. So they go around the interviewing the inhabitants of Minamisakou which includes Wataru’s grandpa. One thing Miyaho knows is that grandpa is actually a foreigner whom the Rokujou family adopted and he took on a Japanese wife and changed his name to reflect one. Miyaho gets excited to know about her grandpa’s love and romance. They discover a diary of his in a library and what Miyaho concludes that grandpa was rather dense when it comes to love. Later, the duo takes a raft to a nearby island to find more clues. Hmm… Is Miyaho’s body language indicating that she likes Wataru? It then started to rain so they took shelter in a nearby cave, which was supposedly a children’s hideout and Wataru did came here with other friends when he was younger. I can’t believe that the flashlight batteries that were left there are still working and the potato chips are still edible! Not passed its expiry date, he says. No thanks. Miyaho isn’t too pleased to find this and Wataru realized that the ‘garbage’ he left here has ruined what is supposedly to be Miyaho grandpa’s memories. He apologizes. Then Miyaho remembers from the diary that there should be a drawing on the cave walls left behind by grandpa and grandma but to her horror spots a love umbrella with Wataru and Umi’s name instead. Miyaho feels devastated and starts crying, throwing a fit that she wants to go home while Wataru wonders what is happening to make her so instead.
In episode 4, Miyaho’s sulking has her locking herself up in her dorm room and dismissing Wataru from helping finish her research. The day of the exhibit arrives and Wataru’s grandparents have a firsthand look at Miyaho’s work and are quite impressed, though there are articles missing from a certain date onwards. Later Wataru himself goes to look at Miyaho’s work but doesn’t like the way she worded some of her articles. It’s like turning them into mere memories. This upsets Miyaho a lot so much so she doesn’t want to see Wataru’s face and locks herself up in her mansion this time, giving her illness as an excuse. Though the other girls are pissed about Wataru has done, he intends to make up by continuing Miyaho’s research. Wataru works hard to gather the remaining articles and is successful. One night, he arrives outside Miyaho’s mansion but since she doesn’t want to see him, Wataru waits out all night in the cold. I guess she feels guilty so at least Miyaho opens her window to find out why he came. He shows her the remaining and thus perfect collection of grandpa’s works. Miyaho is impressed and soon the duo sat together and go through what Wataru has compiled as they chat how grandpa loved this island very much. With that, Miyaho is back to her usual happy self and comes back to the dorm. The next day as she fixes the dorm roof with Wataru, she tells her how she intends to come back here even after she leaves and as Wataru suggested, be the second expert of Minamisakou Island.
Episode 5 is on Shizu. Wataru remembers how she first met her when he skipped supplementary classes to take a nap to feel the southern breeze when he spot Shizu who soon ran away but dropped her straw hat behind. Though he gets a lecture from Naoko and the rest, he continues to search for Shizu and finds her looking forlorn in the rain one day. He treats her at Takashi’s place and tries to ask her several questions but she did not answer and her looks seems troubling. Wataru then follows her back to her apartment whereby the whole place is in a mess. Worse than a pig sty. He learns that her parents aren’t home and that she gets her meals from the supermarket. Poor girl. Because of that, Wataru brings Shizu back to Tsugumi Dorm for proper food and the other girls get the shock of their lives. Yeah, they may be thinking something else. Once they find out the real reason, they let her stay but note that in order for Shizu to stay here, she needs her parent’s permission. So Naoko warns Wataru that he needs to take responsibility and he agrees to care for her. Funny to see that Saeri fearing that she will be the headline news for child kidnapping. The next day, Wataru and Saeri go find Shizu’s dad who is too busy with his construction job to attend to them or her daughter’s problems. They then find Shizu’s mom who is a pachinko addict. Yeah, she doesn’t give a damn about her daughter. This attitude of hers pisses off Saeri as she spills her pachinko winnings and gives her a good lecture. Back at the dorm, Wataru suggests for Shizu to live with them given that her parents don’t care for her and tries to convince Naoko to become part of the ‘family’. Saeri jokes that this sounds like a marriage proposal, causing Umi to panic a little. Naoko agrees but as long as she is the noble head of the family. I guess Wataru don’t mind doing things for her or if she’s being bossy. With that, everyone has a good time with Shizu around. A funny part was how Shizu was racing with Rinna through a swim at the beach. Shizu did a sly thing by unhooking Rinna’s top so Wataru had to dive in and save her because he thought she was drowning. Of course, Rinna slaps him and thinks he’s a pervert while Shizu wins the race. Hehe. But all that happy days may soon end because one day Wataru spots Shizu’s father at the dorm, wanting to take back his daughter.
In episode 6, Wataru and the dorm girls are having discussion over whether to hand Shizu back to her parents. Wataru vehemently objects citing that they have abandoned her. I hope he hasn’t turned into a loli. Just how close are they? Well, they can even take baths together (at least she’s wearing a swimsuit) and Shizu even hides behind Wataru and orders him to ‘attack’ Saeri when the latter chases her for skipping supplementary lessons. Then as Shizu tries to study, the gang are being too noisy so much so Shizu put her foot down. However, as Naoko noted, she looks so cute when she’s mad and probably why Wataru is attracted to her. This statement panics Umi a little as she says their relationship is only brother-sister type. Hopefully. Shizu then pulls Wataru’s hair and calls him an idiot thinking that all this is his fault. Of course Shizu soon excels in her exam, bringing relief to everyone. Another funny part is that Wataru is now acting like Shizu’s father because he objects to whoever gave Shizu a love letter and shreds it to pieces! Shizu is okay with it since she mentions how she belongs to Wataru’s family. Later that night, Wataru gets word from drunk Saeri how Shizu’s parents have several times came to their doorstep and request their daughter back and it seemed that they repented their actions and have turned over a new leaf. Though Wataru still doesn’t want to hand her over, this made him think and in a dilemma. One day while taking a walk with Shizu, Wataru with a heavy heart mentions how she should go back to her parents. This causes her to be upset and heartbroken and runs away in tears. Shizu locks herself in her dorm room crying. Wataru desperately tries to call her out but to no avail. He feels guilty and decides to wait at her door, not moving until she comes out. Finally after a few more comforting and assuring words, Shizu emerges and gets emotional as she eats the onigiri Umi made. Wataru then collapses due to hunger. He recuperates in hospital and thankfully isn’t life threatening. As he gets better, Shizu tells him how her parents treats her better now and decides to go back living with her parents as they can’t live without her them but will always consider Tsugumi Dorm as her second home and will come back if she ever feels lonely. Shizu hugs Wataru and thanks him as he says because of her, they have become a family.
It’s Umi’s turn in episode 7. We see Wataru having a discussion with his grandpa who is trying to persuade Wataru to come live back with them. It seems his grandpa doesn’t know that he is living along with Umi at the dorm. Likewise, Umi is having a chat with her dad who seems to be quite busy with his work so much so Umi has to stay at the dorm. One night as Wataru and Umi head back to the dorm together, they spot the rest telling ghost stories. However Umi starts to get frightened even before Miyaho got to the ghost part and her fear is no joke. It’s like traumatic. They stop and Wataru requests everyone to be by Umi’s side for tonight. The next morning as Umi picks tomatoes, Wataru has a flashback of how he met Umi and her parents when they’re kids and since she was so shy, she has always been sticking around him like a leech. It seems Umi has a fear of being alone even in present time and when she got separated from Wataru at the festival, she starts to panic. Thankfully Wataru manages to find her and calm her down. Later Wataru’s grandpa has a social drinking gathering at his home and the way the guests rudely say things may indicate something bad about Umi and Wataru’s parents. Wataru is upset about some of the guests’ comments and wanted to give them a piece of his mind but was restrained by a classmate of his. The reason why those people never made a big fuss about this was because Wataru’s grandpa holds a respected position on this island.
As Wataru and Umi head back to the dorm on a stormy night, they find that the electricity is out. Umi, afraid of being alone by herself in her room, requests for Wataru to be by her side. There, they reminisce about their younger childhood days. We find out her mom walked out of her when she was young, the reason for her fear of being alone. Not only that, she eloped with Wataru’s dad! No wonder the island people hate those 2. But to blame it on their innocent children, especially Umi? No wonder Umi’s dad seems like a lenient person too. Some may call him ‘weak’. Meanwhile the principal of the school and his vice, who never liked Wataru for his delinquent ways, tell Wataru’s grandpa that since the male dorm is closed, it has merged with the female’s. Those 2 jerks seem to enjoy what is to follow next as they leave while grandpa is in shock that Wataru had lied to him.
In episode 8, Wataru’s grandpa has a serious talk with his grandson. He now wants him to move back with him but Wataru remains defiant. Granny then chats with Wataru and says no matter what, she’ll be by his side. Wataru goes to talk to Umi that his grandpa knows about their secret so Umi tries to go talk to her dad but couldn’t bring herself to reveal it. Next day at school during recess, the gang are talking about the upcoming student council elections. I love it when Akane can talk without pausing and her head is still shaking. Shake it, shake it, baby! Since Naoko is to graduate once this term ends, Wataru suggests running for council president and if he is successfully elected, will nominate Umi as his vice. Yeah, let’s control the school together! Back home, Wataru discusses this with grandma and hopes by getting Umi to be vice president, they will acknowledge it. However, it will be tough since Umi is a shy girl and her part requires her to speak in front of a crowd. As expected, Umi’s low self-confidence and it-is-impossible attitude, protests about it. She feels she can’t do great things nor lead people. She also thinks that by speaking upfront, this will cause her dad to feel hurt once she gets to know her relationship with Wataru. Of course Wataru isn’t thinking like that and wonders if it’s okay for them to run away like that too. This causes Umi to be upset as she runs away in tears. Yeah, another case of confining herself in her room. Is it a trend these days? Luckily she didn’t lock the door so the rest could come in and give her words of encouragement and support. With that, Umi at least feels a little better.
On the day itself, Saeri has arranged for Umi’s dad and Wataru’s grandparents (they seem pretty surprised to see each other) to watch their children give speech in front of a crowded school hall. Though Umi fumbles at first, soon her honesty and maturity of her speech (especially about not running away) is enough to impress everyone and put all politicians to shame. A standing ovation! With that, grandma tells the men that she hopes they will acknowledge them and Wataru’s wish to remain at the dorm as they have spoken out to be the school’s role model. They agree to let the past go and talk things over. Next day, Umi is carving something on her wall and tries to hide it from Wataru. She makes him promise not to look at it until she has comes back to the island and by then could say out her feelings properly. It is a love umbrella bearing her name and Wataru’s. I guess it’s better to leave her secret crush the way things are.
Saeri takes the spotlight in episode 9. The timeline here takes place just after Wataru and Rinna’s marathon stint. The Tsugumi Dorm girls notice suspicious men around the dorm and poor Wataru got beaten up by Rinna when they took precautions. Saeri then mentions how the principal may have sent somebody from the construction company to Tsugumi Dorm for some spot checks. Remember that minimum rule of having 5 persons living in the dorm? They fear that the principal is having plans to demolish the dorm. Saeri and Wataru plan to do their own investigation on what the principal is up to so that they could maintain living in the dorm with the rest. At least, till next March. Their findings has them to know that the principal and his vice are picking up some real estate agent, Sakada, from the airport this coming Sunday. The duo tail them to an inn and waited outside till they finished. The principal and his vice sends off Sakada in a taxi but since the vice principal need to urgently take a leak, he rushes to the spot where Wataru and Saeri are spying from (a love hotel entrance, that is). In their haste, Wataru hugs Saeri to shield themselves from being seen. Luckily the vice only saw them as an indecent couple and only the back of Wataru. When he is done, he leaves with the principal. Of course Saeri is pretty much embarrassed and upset on what Wataru just did. That night, the vice principal went back to that spot because he remembered he dropped his wallet. Not only he found his, but somebody else’s. The next day, Wataru and Saeri continue their spying on the trio and this is what they find and conclude. The principal is standing for mayor in the coming elections and plans to sell off Tsugumi Dorm, which will then be turned into a resort and he could make some profit from its receipts. But they can’t do anything since there is no concrete evidence. However the next day, Wataru has been called to the principal’s office. He is instructed to face backwards and it is then the vice principal recognizes that back he spot that day. He shows further proof of the student ID wallet that he dropped. With that, the principal is happy and is going to expel him from school. Oh no.
But that’s not the end of Wataru’s troubles. In episode 10, even Naoko is upset that he did something like this. Though she wants to know which girl he was with, Wataru tries to protect Saeri by giving an excuse that he didn’t ask her name. But Naoko isn’t that dumb and suspects it has to be a person of this dorm so she tells the other girls to close their eyes and the one who was with Wataru to raise her hand with the promise she won’t get mad. When Saeri does so, she is given a slap by Naoko. Of all people. However Saeri’s earnest emotional confession how she wants to be with them all, soften their hearts. The next day, Saeri is to attend a 12 person emergency meeting whereby they will discuss the fate of Wataru. Miyaho also attends the meeting on behalf of the director. During the meet, it is Saeri against everyone else and Miyaho was like not saying a word to protect nor accuse. Uh huh. She’s like sitting quietly there on the fence, just listening. Saeri is upset that she didn’t do anything to save her but as Miyaho notes, those who save themselves will be saved. Saeri tries her best to convince everyone and the odds are against her 11-1. They need a unanimous decision to expel Wataru. There was even a time when a motion to remove Saeri from the meeting! However, luckily a teacher realizes Saeri’s effort and chose not to remove her as they go back to its original discussion. Slowly the tide turns on the principal and his vice as Saeri debates Wataru’s character like although he’s being a delinquent, his actions were for the sake of his friends. Then when a teacher brings up a case of precedent, Saeri mentions a delinquent with far worse record than Wataru. He is Takashi but he didn’t get expelled, just a suspension and later he graduated with flying colours. In order to get a unanimous vote to not expel Wataru, Naoko and the others blackmail the principal and his vice about his mayor ambitions and his corrupted ways, so he has no choice but to agree. With that, Wataru remains in school as he narrates how thanks to Saeri’s efforts, Tsugumi Dorm still exists today.
As you may have guessed, the only girl left is Naoko. Do you want to know how her double-faced came about? In episode 11, 3 years ago, it seems Wataru boldly confessed to Naoko and wanted to go out with her. After all that pestering, Naoko agreed to give him a try. Such happiness can’t be described (which includes trashing his bicycle). On the day of their date, Naoko has a place in mind that she wants to go. On a hilltop, Naoko meets her stargazing senpai, Hiro. She seems quite friendly with him and this made Wataru realized. It may seem that he is jealous but actual fact that Naoko just wanted to bring him along so that she could catch Hiro’s attention. Later Wataru apologizes for not knowing her feelings as Naoko feels guilty. She tries to explain but Wataru runs away and locks himself up in his room. Till one rainy day Wataru finds Naoko standing outside his place. She tells him how Hiro’s heart is only on stargazing and cannot his mind be cracked that easily. She apologizes and kisses him before running away. Soon Naoko left the island and it is then depressed Wataru realized he do liked her after all and that she was his first true love. A year later when Wataru moves into the dorm, he is surprised to see Naoko there. He learns that she did leave for Tokyo but for a week to attend a relative’s funeral. Wataru then gladly says how she should be his official girlfriend. However Naoko isn’t pleased because he didn’t stick true to his word (about never forgiving a woman who used him back then). Yeah, she says how she hates weak guys. With that, she imposes special dorm rules on him. That’s when her double personality arises. This is so that what they did back then will never be revealed. Over time, Naoko imposes her bossy attitude over Wataru and the rest of the other dorm girls, in which they are fine with. Uh huh. To the other people, Naoko puts up a nice personality. Double standards, I’d say. Just when Wataru thinks that he’s okay with the way things are, Hiro comes back to the island, threatening to drag them back into the past once more.
In episode 12, we see Hiro having a friendly chat with Wataru at the dorm’s rooftop. Seems like a nice person. During dinner, he says his return is to observe some meteor shower (I’ll spare the technical details) passing here. They also learn that Naoko intends to go study at the same university that Hiro went. He’ll be glad to help her. Because of this, Wataru suspects that Naoko still has feelings for Hiro and spaces out at times and clumsily break plates during his stint at Takashi’s cafe. Maybe. He finds her still talking friendly with him and Hiro did advised Wataru to stop troubling her. Wataru has a chat with Umi as the latter says how she has a certain magic which keeps everyone at the dorm together. Wataru realized and knows what to do. That is, to believe and wait for her. As he is working at Takashi’s, Takashi asks him for his total resolution on his matter and if he is willing to accept the outcome no matter what. Wataru nods in agreement. Takashi then gives him a map and tells him to go there after work because the answer will be there.
Later Naoko is seen talking to Hiro at the stargazing site (the location on that given map) as Wataru treks to the spot. Naoko tells him about Wataru, how she used him to get his intention, and how she is comfortable with living with the people at Tsugumi Dorm who accepted her character. In short, she wants to stay back. Hiro wonders why she would give up entering university to protect the dorm. She replies even though the dorm will be dissolved after next March, if there’s a good case, at least it will not be torn down. Just like how Hiro loves stargazing, she too loves this dorm as it is a place where she has made many memories and is currently her dream. So that dream of entering the same university as Hiro was of the past. Now her current dream is to find one on this island. At that time, Wataru has overheard everything, realized how strong a person she is and feels guilty for suspecting her. He rushes over in tears and profusely apologizes. The other dorm girls too heard her and are overcome with emotion. Hiro accepts her decision and will support her dream. He shake hands with her before leaving. Soon Naoko and the rest make 5 vows of Tsugumi Dorm, like to be together and such. The next day, the Tsugumi Dorm tenants gather for a moving out ceremony.
The first half of episode 13 feels like it focuses back on Rinna again. As the gang prepares for their moving out ceremony. Wataru notices a little red rock-like earring on Rinna’s ear. He remembers a legend whereby a boy and a girl once fell in love on this island. Because the girl lived in the ocean and they were soon parted, the boy split a priceless red crystal into 2 and gave half of it to her as a symbol so that he will remember her once again and love her. Wataru and Rinna took the earring to a friend of Takashi’s, Junji Kamiyama, who created that piece a long time ago, to ascertain it. Though it’s a bit jagged now. We learn how Rinna’s parents were not on good terms and were close to a divorce. At such testing times, Rinna was depressed and sad. At that time, that’s when a boy came up to her and gave her a piece of that earring, dubbed the rock of reunion, to cheer her up and became her friend, though she can’t remember how he looked like. Wanna bet that this guy is Wataru? Yeah, he finally realized it that night that the boy could be him. So the next day he searched his grandpa’s entire storeroom for his other half. He finally finds it and calls Rinna. It’s like fate reuniting them, huh? However when they try to combine the earring as one again, it doesn’t fit! So much for the drama. The next day, Wataru finds out that Rinna’s piece was given by Takashi! Which means the other half belongs to… OMG! It’s Akane! She’s still talkative as ever! She thinks Wataru is stalking her by hanging out in this place! It then occurred to me that she is Takashi’s little sister! Furthermore, Takashi vehemently won’t allow Akane to be Wataru’s girlfriend, citing that obscene playboy as a perverted wolf! But even so, Akane is disappointed with her brother’s character because she was expecting him to give her his blessing! So my question is, did Rinna actually got the piece when she was young? Later, Wataru and Rinna went to see the latter’s father’s girlfriend and we find out that the reason she lived at Tsugumi Dorm was because she couldn’t handle the shock of them co-habitating together. But she soon finds out that she isn’t such a bad person after all.
Note that the mid-intermission here shows the photo of the members of Tsugumi Dorm and now the title of the episode appears, which is ‘The Promised Day’. Other than that, no other particular girl in focus nor is it Wataru-focused episode. Hey, doesn’t that guy like a main star in every episode? I guess that’s enough if you look at it that way, right? The second half focuses on the Tsugumi Dorm members in their moving out ceremony. While Saeri hands the gang their graduation scrolls, she also has a few heartfelt words of encouragement for them, like how they’ve grown stronger and such. She sounds so mature now. Even Naoko is brought to tears. Except for Wataru, whom Saeri didn’t have any words initially because she’ll still be seeing him around but after he protests, she has a short speech for him too. Finally a speech from Naoko, which is an emotional heartfelt one about how they all love and protected this dorm. It’s heartbreaking to see the girls shed tears as they all sing along in their farewell ceremony while having short flashback clips of certain events in the previous episodes. As Umi can no longer hold on, she breaks down and hugs Wataru. Poor girl. I think I can’t hold on much longer too. *Sob sob*.
I know the ending wasn’t much but I guess it’s better to leave things the way things are for now. The final scenes of the last episode did stir a little emotion in me. It’s sad to see that many of them would leave the dorm and island but hopefully they will return and reunite one day. Where ever they are, their hearts will always and definitely be together. It’s a good thing I caught this anime series and even though it won’t be an all-time best, at least I like the way the drama is played out. And no, it isn’t boring to me. But there are still some questions which remain. For instance, I’m still wondering how Rinna ended up sleeping in her undies back in episode 1.
There is one girl which is my favourite character. She is Akane! Shucks, how I’d wished that she had a 2-episode to focus on. If only she had lived at Tsugumi Dorm, then maybe that’s a possibility. Ah well, even if she made cameo appearances, they’re still enough to make me break into a smile. Got to really love her lively talkative behaviour, that’s for sure. Initially I was also hoping that there would be some love triangle among Wataru and some of the girls but it didn’t turn out anything close. It was a shocker to me when it came to light that Naoko and Wataru were once a couple, albeit for a short time. I had always thought it was to be Umi and that she should be Wataru’s girl. What about Miyaho? She did show some prospects back in her episodes. But I guess the important thing to them is staying together and friendship.
The drawing, art and animation isn’t anything to shout about as it is your conventional Japanese bishoujo drawing. I wouldn’t really say that scenes of the ocean or the luscious greens are breathtaking but I guess when one has seen too many concrete jungle, even such natural greeneries can be refreshing. Hey, it’s an island, right? So the most important lesson we can learn from this series is about loyalty and friendship. How it sticks like a glue. One can overcome many obstacles if one have many friends like these people. Just like how Wataru and the girls did. Because of that, you can never feel lonely. I wonder if this could apply to otakus alike. Think hikikomori extreme cases. Nah. Better to just keep watching animes.

Kono Aozora Ni Yakusoku Wo
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