The latest episode of Haruhi continued the Tameiki (Sigh) arc‘s coverage of the SOS-dan’s foray into filmmaking for Episode 00 “The Adventures of Mikuru Asahina”, making for one of the funner episodes of the second season thus far, especially for those who have a good memory of the original’s bizarre pilot episode.
For those interested in a bevy of screencaps, accompanied by some light commentary, another episode summary is available below…
The episode starts off with the brigade off on another film-shoot for Haruhi’s planned cultural festival film screening; this time taking place at an old, abandoned municipal lake.
Tsuruya-san, Taniguchi, and the second of Kyon’s male friends whose name no one ever remembers (Kunikida) are along to perform as extras.
The lake / pool is clearly a public hazard and fenced in, so entry is a bit of a problem…
Nagato breaks open the fence with a gentle grab, which naturally only Kyon finds suspicious.
Filming begins. (The text marks this episode as Suzumiya Haruhi no Tameiki IV)
The familiar pier setting from the original episode is instantly recognizable, making for an interesting juxtaposition of the first season’s location backgrounds along with the new’s modified character designs.
Poor Mikuru’s victimization begins anew.
Itsuki either has tremendous confidence in the strength of his reflector, or of course doesn’t know how to use it.
Getting Mikuru ready for the upcoming fight scene, Haruhi puts on new blue-colored contact in Mikuru’s left eye.
However, the last time Mikuru tried to perform a Mikuru Beam, Haruhi’s reality-shaping powers resulted in a highly dangerous situation as everyone is quick to realize, leading to…
The hand belongs to Nagato, of course.
As her still-floating witch hat displays, Nagato can move quite quickly when she needs to.
A quick stare might suggest the thrilling prospect of an exceedingly rare KyoAni panchira above, but it’s only Mikuru’s apron.
Nagato sucking on Mikuru’s flesh.
The Mikuru’s Beam’s (this time an invisible molecular-whip sort of projectile) resulting damage.
Nagato displays the negligible (to her) scars from the beam as she gives the others an explanation while Haruhi and the normal folk are distracted.
“Passer-bys who have been turned into puppets of the Evil Space Alien Yuki.”
The director goes over the extra’s roles in the scene.
Haruhi’s flowchart of character interactions in the plot, with Yuki in the top right, manipulating normal people (bottom) against the heroine Mikuru (left).
Haruhi eagerly reveals the next bit will require Mikuru to be thrown into the filthy lake.
Kyon is not pleased.
Mikuru is fairly worried also…
…But Itsuki’s early warnings about the danger of displeasing Haruhi decides the outcome.
Tsuruya-san, takes pity on her classmate on offers her conveniently nearby home as a place to dry off.
Tsuruya’s gigantic, near-palatial home (!)
Haruhi and Tsuruya mysteriously whisper about something indoors…
A scantily clad Mikuru cutely gulps down the milk Tsuruya-san just brought her.
The filming of Mikuru and Koizumi’s awkward bed scene begins.
Kyon is quite agitated…
This is as far as it gets…
Kyon, confused by how everyone besides him seemingly at ease, interrupts, pointing out that the scene isn’t even necessary in the film.
Aside from the usually complacent Itsuki participation, Kyon notices Mikuru’s odd calm…
Mikuru makes some wonderfully expression as she drunkenly stares back at Kyon.
Kyon figures out the the devious scheme…
Tsuruya-san admits her spiking of Mikuru’s drink.
The ultra-director doesn’t appreciate Kyon’s interference with the film’s “love scene”.
Mikuru mutters that she’s perfectly alright with it all, before nearly passing out again.
Haruhi bemoans her star actress haven gotten too drunk to act properly.
So she starts (lightly) batting the back of Mikuru’s head for “training”.
Kyon becomes more and more enraged by Haruhi’s behavior…
Another training smack.
Kyon finally loses patience and orders Haruhi to stop, verbally assaulting Haruhi and all of her directing.
Haruhi, amazed that Kyon is daring to argue with her and gets just as angry.
The others watch on meekly.
Haruhi finishes her outburst by proclaiming Mikuru her toy, free to use as she wishes.
(Haruhi’s eye as she sees the incoming blow.)
A rare shot of a Haruhi with a shocked expression on her face.
Kyon looks at the uniformed arm that barely stopped his strike on Haruhi.
Haruhi, still somewhat overwhelmed by Kyon’s attack, manages to get out a few more words to insult Kyon.
Kyon refuses to relent, threatening the tearful schoolgirl with yet more violence in order to finally teach her a lesson about her behavior.
A drunken Mikuru begs Kyon to stop before finally passing out at his feet.
Afterwards, Tsuruya-san apologizes to Kyon for her involvement, promising to take care of Mikuru in her home.
Everyone leaves for the evening.
Koizumi flags down Kyon in the street to show him something interesting…
The birds at the park from yesterday’s filming – the same birds, Itsuki says, Haruhi had been feeding.
“I’d prefer them to be white if it was possible, but for now it’s all right!”
Itsuki has yet another long talk with Kyon about the nature of Haruhi’s powers, and their roles of their involvement in the entire affair.
Kyon mostly goes along with Itsuki’s speech, although he does question if the world even holds enough value to justify all their efforts…
The following morning.
Kyon, remembering Itsuki’s advice from earlier, seems rather upset at the previous day’s events, but not nearly as much so as the depressed girl sitting behind him:
Kyon dwells some more on Itsuki’s words during lunch.
Leaving the table, he strides off into the school halls.
Approaching a door, he opens it wide to find…
A surprised Haruhi, practicing with putting her hair into a ponytail.
After some quick fumbling, she gives Kyon the cold shoulder.
Kyon announces to Haruhi: “We are definitely going to make this film a success!”
Haruhi, smiling back.
Later, the brigade gathers in a familiar public walkway.
A jubilant Haruhi, returned to normal, expresses the need for Nagato to have a witch’s familiar, preferably a black cat.
Kyon accurately points out Nagato is meant to be an alien, not a witch, but the slight inconsistency doesn’t seem to matter anyone else.
Haruhi, nonplussed, turns to Nagato to ask if she knows anywhere they might find a cat…
Cue the ED.
The ending of this episode rather obviously gives next week’s episode as the 5th episode of “The Sigh” arc, although any further prediction as to the details of the rest of the season’s episodes is a fairly risky bet to make with this series.
There still is a reasonable possibility that the next episode might just end the arc, but it is at least clear that viewers will be treated to the situation behind the mystery of Shamisen the talking cat – hopefully in another episode that matches this one’s caliber.