Anime Review: Orange Episode 12

Suwa & Kakeru talking

I hope that everyone is having a good week so far.

Things are going pretty well now, enough so that I would want to say that things can only get better, but that would be a foolish thought, so I can only see how things play out from here.

As many of you guys know, I have been following two shows this season and both are drawing to an end this month.

So far, I have covered the penultimate episode of one of those shows, and the other premièred this week.

Today, I will be reviewing the latest episode of that other show, which is Orange episode 12.

As I have given a series synopsis in an earlier post, I will not go over it again.

Naho apologizing to Kakeru

Things have gotten worse between Naho and Kakeru, as the two hardly talk, and Naho is determined to patch things up.

Meanwhile, Kakeru goes over how things turned out the way they did and discovers a secret that was being kept from him.

Kakeru messing around with friends

While many of the earlier episodes have been great, I cannot really say the same for this one.

Fortunately, there were a few nice things present, so I do not have to skip right into the stuff that I did not like too much.

I liked how what had occurred behind the scenes was explored a bit and even events that the future selves of Naho and her friends were trying to fix.

For the longest time, I knew that Kakeru was suffering from the usual things that crops up when somebody as significant as a family member or close friend commits suicide, but the relationship between Kakeru and his deceased mother was never really explored, only that Kakeru's grandmother said that, just like every other good and loving parent, she wanted Kakeru to be happy.

Here, it is finally revealed why Kakeru's mother did what she did, instead of coming off as overly dependent on her child, like she seemed to have been, from what Kakeru said or thought.

While the message she left her son had none of the emotional feels that the letter Kotomi Ichinose's parents left behind in Clannad's visual novel had, it showed that she wanted to protect her son from the things that had hurt him in the past, from his biological father to the bullying that he had experienced in school, and that did convey some of the love she had for her child.

Of course, people forget that our very existence hurts others, and the pain that we experience in life, especially the pain caused by death, is the catalyst that allows us to become stronger, so Kakeru's mother should not have been so concerned with the possibility that her son would be hurt in his new life at his new school.

Still, that does not mean that it made things a little sad to find out that Kakeru was blaming himself for things he had no control over, much like the way we all feel during our lives at some point.

Even though I want to give TMS full credit for being able to deliver on this, I cannot because from some online scans of the manga, things play out pretty much same way, so the real credit goes to Ichigo Takano.

She did a good job in putting this all in, because, if she had not TMS may not have added it in either, because these episodes have been fairly faithful to the content of the manga, at least the times that I did bother checking if things were in the manga or if TMS made a decision to go a different route.

I also liked how, even though Naho was somewhat able to try and fix things with Kakeru, things were not truly resolved between.

Now, I am not saying that I like seeing bad things happen to innocent people, because I do not think that anybody is who giving it their all and is honest when dealing with others, but a lot of people seem to forget that forgiveness is not something that happens immediately.

In fact, according to, a post written by Rubin Khoddam on Psychology Today, it actually takes time for some people to forgive others, much like it takes time for people to get through the grieving process after losing somebody close to them to death.

Here, Kakeru denied that there was any argument and told Naho that everything was alright, though it seemed like she was still avoiding her, which meant that he was not over what happened.

Whenever there is a major argument that affects two people the same way, they would either both be scared about being around the other person for various reasons, like hurting the other even more, or they could be as petty as kids and say they were right and the other person was wrong or many other different emotions, which is why our emotions tend to complicate things that may actually seem to be simple on the surface.

In the case of Naho and, if Suwa is to believed, Kakeru, both feel like they hurt the other in their little argument, and if things went back to the way they were before, that would have rendered the argument that the two had useless.

After all, Kakeru has been feeling bouts of depression, and depression is not something that can actually be overcome quite easily, which I know because I have a friend who has suffered from depression.

The thing that I liked the most though was seeing a discussion take place between the future selves of Naho and her friends.

Even though it was pretty obvious that they wanted to erased their regrets, I did not really know how they came to the conclusion to write the letters that they did or how they planned to get them sent to the past, which I have been wondering since episode 5.

Yes, I kind of guess that wormholes were the method used, by saying that some people believe that they make exist in the magnetic field of our planet, but I was not too certain of that, since I first heard about time travel through wormholes was in the NOVA documentary called Fabric of the Comos.

Here, the group of friends did indeed decide to try and utilize a black hole, though they were not certain that it would work, so I guess that they were lucky in that aspect, but it might not really change anything, since the contents of the letters never change.

I am glad that TMS decided to delve into this now, because it allows the viewer to find out if the future selves have realized what their present selves did, and makes me want to watch the final episode now, even though the manga has already revealed the answer.

Good job, TMS. Unlike 8bit, you have actually made me really look forward to the final episode, which is something that is required of the penultimate episode.

Outside of that, I cannot think of anything else that I particularly liked.

Because there were a few things from the current past and the past in the parallel world were revealed and the Naho is still struggling to mend her relationship with Kakeru, as well as how the future selves of Naho and the gang decided to send the letters was confirmed, made this a pretty good episode.

Future Hagita talking with other friends

Although I liked this episode, there are some issues.

However, aside from issues too minor to talk about, there were only two things that really bugged me.

There was not as much emotional feeling in this episode as I would have liked to see.

At the end of the previous episode, Naho and Kakeru had a big argument and he pretty much destroyed his phone, which made me think that some big changes were going to occur.

While those big changes did not happen in this episode, it instead delved into a lot of stuff, including Kakeru seeing his old friends, and I wanted to feel the sadness of Kakeru and Naho, but I could not.

When I went through the manga, trying to confirm whether one of the good things was because of Takano or TMS, I actually did feel sadness for Kakeru and Naho and wanted things to be resolved quickly.

As a result, the blame falls squarely on TMS.

I am disappointed, TMS. I do not expect you to make me feel strong emotion every episode, but I thought that you could do a better job than this because of the other episodes and other series that you have worked on in the past.

This is one of those moments where the emotional feel was really necessary, and they blew it.

Then again, they have not ruin this series so badly that it cannot be redeemed without some miracle, so I cannot be too mad at them and will just label this as an annoyance.

I just hope that they can deliver better in the final episode, and I have very little doubt that they will disappoint me, though I do acknowledge the possibility of them failing does exist.

The other thing that I am annoyed with is how Kakeru's mental state and the importance of what people say was not really explored all that much.

During the course of the episode, we see Kakeru meeting some old friends and he shows signs of being suicidal, but those friend blow him off and say that suicide is a cowardly act.

Now, I do kind of understand why they may think that suicide is a cowardly act, because of my religious upbringing and that a lot of the things Kenshin Himura says in the Media Blasters dub of Rurouni Kenshin resonates with me, but I do not think that anybody who says that they have contemplated suicide should be told that it is a cowardly act, and these so-called friends are not really his friends, like Naho and the gang are his friends.

In the manga, after this meeting, we see that Kakeru never really saw them as friends, and, in fact was actually hurt more by what they said than happy, with some dialog from his thoughts, which made me feel more sympathy for Kakeru.

Here, however, all that is seen is Kakeru being frustrated and saying that he was not joking around about what he said.

Really, TMS?

The story is focused on Naho and her friends saving Kakeru, and if I cannot feel out his sadness, how can I root for them in their struggle to accomplish this goal?

This series is supposed to be one of the best that deals with depression as a main focus, according to a post written by Tony Yao on Manga Therapy, but TMS really failed to focus on things that Ichigo Takano added in along with what TMS did bring to the table.

They already showed how complicated our relationships with others can be, so they should be focusing on the other important elements too.

Yes, this is not really bad enough to break the series as a whole, but it does make me feel a little disappointment in what has otherwise been a good show, so I will label this issue an annoyance as well.

Hopefully, TMS can turn things around in this area too in the final episode, but I again acknowledge the possibility that they might ruin this show in the end, much like how A-1 Pictures ruined Boku Dake ga Inai Machi towards the end.

While there only two things that bugged me, neither was so bad that it could hurt the series overall too badly, especially considering how well TMS has handled the series with its storyline.

Considering that the only issues boiled down to a few annoyances, unless TMS botches the final episode, and the good far outweighed it, this was definitely worth watching.

I only recommend this to famns of Orange.

What are your thoughts on Orange episode 12? Did you like it or hate it? Was there something that you liked or hated then went unmentioned? Feel free to comment.

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Copyright © 2015 Bryce Campbell. All Rights Reserved.