By Miki Yoshikawa
Hikaru supposedly attended Suzaku High with the noble and altruistic intention of making friends for his brother in his stead. However, it’s clear that on a subconscious level, he wanted friends of his own. Unfortunately, his bad experiences with people made him believe this was something unobtainable for him. In addition, he didn’t have good grades, or a scholarly aptitude, so he convinced himself that there was no merit in him going to high school in the first place. In reality, it was less that he didn’t want to, but rather, that he didn’t think he could.
So it’s clear why he received the charm power. The powers manifest from the wishes made by the witch entering the school, and Hikaru, deep down, wanted to be liked by other people. This also explains why we never saw it in action before this chapter. Hikaru has likely never kissed a girl, much less another guy, and given that he was unaware that he even was a witch, he was unlikely to have ever used it even accidently, much less on purpose. With his character arc resolved through finding friends in joining the Supernatural Studies Club, Hikaru looks to be a new addition to Yamada-kun’s ever-expanding roster of regular characters. Considering his successful and highly relatable characterization during the course of his arc, his inclusion should add another fun dynamic into the mix, with many potential comedic possibilities just waiting to be realized.
This chapter was an almost nostalgic return to form for Yamada-kun. It’s been a long time since the Supernatural Studies Club has simply sat in their club room, speculating and testing out powers, especially though such simple and straightforward means. Sadly, we don’t’ see any actual kisses in the chapter. But it’s just nice to see these characters all in one place and interact again. The Supernatual Studies club has been sidelined for so long in favor of Miyamura, Ushio, and Noa, that placing the focus back on them as a team and friends is satisfying in of itself. With Hikaru’s addition to the club, one can only hope that the Supernatural Studies club will return to being the focus again, and Shiraishi, Miyabi, and Tsubaki get some much needed screen time and more chances to shine, both comically and dramatically.
Speaking of, the detail in the chapter of the charm spell not working on Shiraishi, because she was already in love with Yamada, was such an adorable aside. It also reminds that despite being the female lead of the series, Shiraishi has not had nearly enough bearing on the plot as of late, and that needs to change ASAP. Just showing more dates between Yamada and developing their romance a little more would be appreciated, as much as I’d like to see her do things pertaining outside of her relationship with him again.
This was a funny and cute epilogue to a well done arc, adding a strongly written new character to the permanent roster, as well as giving us some downtime with the club that we haven’t gotten in a while. While it’s great the plot is moving forward at a good pace, some more chapters like this just showing the club goofing off and playing with the witches’ abilities again would honestly be welcomed. Chapters like this show off the charming, goofy sense of humor, and lovable characters and relationships that remind me just how much I adore this series. Some episodic chapters between this and the next arc could do some good to give both the audience and the characters a chance to wind down and just have some worry-free fun.