Continuing the tale of lolis and mahjong, second spectacle of Saki’s “episode of side A” shows our lolis as they manage to make a full five person team – even receiving a sixth unexpected member as coach.
Our two main lolis got together with the bishoujo last episode, and the situation now is that they need two more members to officially have a mahjong club once more – the first Achiga will have after so many years without one since the loss of their former mentor, Harue, at the highschool level national tournament. The bishoujo of this comeback crew, Kuro, seemingly takes the role of leader as she directs her proteges to where she says she’ll find a new member.
Kuro takes her friends somewhere which she says will get them a new member – that place ultimately is her home, and the member, her sister. Hearing of the request that she join Achiga’s growing mahjong club, Kuro’s sister seems thrilled. On a side-note however, this sister of hers also seems to be rather chilled physically – as we’re so told, Kuro’s sister is essentially cold all the time.
That detail is nothing story significant, at least not for the time being, however one should keep it in mind as it is a key trait of her character – and when Saki gets to the tournaments, character specifics play a major role, no matter how silly they may seem. Those familiar with the first season should know this very well.
In any case however, the focus is now how will the girls find their final needed member – after passing some time relaxing, Kuro recalls an acquaintance who would be a perfect fit for their club. Kuro visits the girl whilst she’s at her workplace – this “Arata-chan” doesn’t seem much interested initially, and she reveals the reasoning of that to be basically, her love for mahjong is more or less nothing than a manifestation of her yuri love for Harue.
Recalling last episode, Harue lost miserably at an inter-high tournament, and from there on, she went to coach kids at the children’s mahjong club she spearheaded – however Arata wasn’t fond of this at all, she was upset that Harue was limiting herself to something as that when she believes her to be skilled enough to accomplish so much more. As result, Arata quit playing mahjong – what Arata didn’t know however is that Harue had said goodbye to the children’s mahjong club and now plays professionally.
Learning this, Arata’s attention looks to have been grasped by Kuro – and sure enough, Arata ends up joining Achiga’s now complete mahjong club when they have their first meeting in full attendance. The meet moves along smoothly as the girls play some mahjong, although they’re still noticeably not all enthusiastic yet, specifically Arata. Yet luckily for Arata, a surprise guest arrives – one who we were shown to have given her their scarf many years ago, Harue.
Harue, standing right outside the mahjong club, is a bit taken aback to hear mahjong tiles being slammed from within the room – she had assumed the place would be vacated and lifeless, yet that is not the case as we know, and as she comes to see. She steps inside, being surprised by the pleasant sight of mahjong playing – and likewise, her former pupils are joyed to see her as well. Arata, who was still holding back in emotion, now expresses her moe yuri love side as her blushes heavily when being graced by the sight of her idol closeup.
Reunions out of the way, Harue hears the plans of this resurrected mahjong club and she insists they allow her to tag along – she’s of course too old to play in the tournament herself now, however she wants to be a coach, manager, or whatever so long as can come. Arata opposes this idea as she does not want to see her yuri love interest take part in something she perceives to be so lowly and degrading. Harue however says she feels there’s something she’s forgotten back at the inter-high tournament – and with that, Arata gives her consent.
Before finally coming to a close, the episode hints towards conflict to soon arise – our heroine’s loli friend Ako encounters some buddies from her middle school days. Unlike Ako however, they seem to be more hostile than friendly while the topic of mahjong is being discussed – all these lolis think of mahjong as serious business, yet some are simply so devout to it that they become mischievous. Once Ako and our heroine trot off with their national star player serving as coach, Ako’s “friends” speak to their loli sempai about what they saw.
The loli sempai looks devious and as if she has some purely villainous mahjong playing tactics in mind. Ending there, the episode leaves one with the tingling of possibility – the previous installment had a more emotional foundation to it as the foundation for the story was laid, here however, one can sense the pickup in the mood. The series is turning faster as new members have been gained – and as the preview for the episode to come shows, some serious mahjong will finally be seen.
Episode of side A’s first episode stole our attention, and this second does well to sustain it – we’re truly feeling eager to see how these girls of Achiga will rise through mahjong to meet their friend in a tournament, and any who have seen the first season should also be raging with anxiety at seeing what lies beyond that period in time after Saki and friends managed to succeed in their venture. Summed up, Saki is proving quite a riveting experience thus far – and not simply for the loli service alone.