Finally, the war of nopan mahjong is now over within Saki’s “episode of side A” as one bishoujo breaks through time and space – whilst another realizes she has no choice but to play the game as it was made.
Looking at this realistically, a horrible, completely flawed manner of examining Saki, Senriyama’s girl basically cheats by seeing three turns ahead by means of some abnormal, illogical breach of scientific possibility – all the while, Kuro-chan follows up by giving up her personal preferences and realizing that to win at riichi mahjong, she needs to play riichi mahjong like it was made to played, which is like riichi mahjong.
Yet of course, if one wanted to analyse in such a manner, there’s no reason to be watching Saki to begin with – although it can’t be helped when the series has become ridiculous to the degree we’ve seen for the last several episodes, not that there’s any complaints whatsoever. The nonsensical Mortal Kombat execution of mahjong plays is exactly the reason why many watch Saki to begin with – that is however, aside from the lolis, cute bishoujos, and absence of pantsu.
And with that all cleared, Senriyama’s girl essentially ruins herself to steal a glimpse of three turns ahead several times within this episode – she’s already been breaking down, though now she’s done for good. The optimist handled the opening portion, and Senriyama continued by essentially laying a foundation for Achiga – and then as that came to fruition, Kuro-chan writhed in the pain for a moment before determining she hasn’t a choice but to play mahjong properly and discard the appropriate tile she needs to win.
Though as any familiar with the series should know, it wasn’t a straightforward delivery – it was after a ton of flashbacks about this and that, and why dora tiles are important, till eventually Kuro-chan gathers the strength, courage, and whatever other sentiments it takes to discard a plastic tile piece in a whimsical four-person game to actually do it. And when she sets down the tile, it’s not simply a diminutive plastic square being set aside, it’s the very essence of her humanity being entrusted to secure a victory.
With that, she indeed manages to win the final hand of this last round which effectively marks the end of this portion of the tournament. An impressive 16,600 point score for Achiga – and while they’ve still lost heavily, the recovery was deemed phenomenal, and no one went bust. They’ve managed to successfully survive through the horrors of Miyanaga Teru as if it were some sort of shower of bombs being dropped across their indigenous land that seemed to be endless – yet has graciously ceased to much relief and cheer.
After the game, Senriyama collapses and is hospitalized – an event expected given her excessively feverish efforts to win which nearly resembled something of a substance relapse. And that is followed by yet another inevitable occurrence, the Achiga girls cross paths with their oppai equipped friend of forever ago. The reunion isn’t teary-eyed, it’s just a “Yeah, we’ll see you there” ordeal in which each seems to be anticipating to see the other in the finals, assuming they can get that far.
All considered, the series made a narrow escape from becoming too repetitive and dull – any more Miyanaga Teru mahjong beatings, and this anime would have become a great cure for insomnia. The path is looking relatively promising now – though admittedly, the most memorable portions of this episode were simply the cute Kuro-chan faces and obligatory nopan service moment.