All Karuta matches in Chihayafuru is good and intense but my favourite is the first battle between Chihaya and Shinobu. In other matches, Chihaya’s the centre of attention whether or not she wins but in this match, Shinobu takes the spotlight effortlessly.
Shinobu’s first swing of the match pretty much sets the bar not only for the rest of the match but for the rest of the anime. This first swing lets everybody knows that she’s one syllable faster than an average Class A player and that her accuracy is unfathomable. The rest of the match shows how superior and unchallenged she is by Chihaya. Our main character almost can’t do anything at all. The match is completely one sided but that’s what makes the game very enjoyable.
Like most other sports anime, it has to have limit to their abilities. If not, characters will grow stronger and stronger each arc, facing with even stronger opponents to the point everything just becomes legitimate superpowers… like Kuroko no Basket (it’s still a fun anime though). Here, we already know that she’s the best so no one else in the entire Chihayafuru universe can top her. She’s the bar. But even if someone surpasses her or is just naturally better than her, it will not be by a very large margin.
This match is also a catalyst for Chihaya’s growth as a Karuta player. All this while, she’s too reliant on her talent of good hearing and speed but now, she has to consider other options for her to use against Shinobu. She needs more weapon instead of harnessing only one.
Well all in all, I just love watching Shinobu playing. Her moves are so fluid and smooth, her focus is very loose which is the opposite or tensed Chihaya, and she’s just a really great player.
That’s it for today. 12 days of anime is ending soon. See you tomorrow.