Monday, July 7, 2014

Hayate The Combat Butler Chapter 457: Ten Year Gap -- Review and Synopsis

Synopsis: Hayate realizes something about this competition due to Fumi and Yukiji's antics. He thanks both of them sincerely and sends Yukiji along to the hotel to look after Hina. He also sends off Fumi to go and help some other people at the beach after thanking her properly.

Hayate finally realizes that he was being a jerk.
Souya and Kotetsu arrive at around the same time and Hayate actually treats Kotetsu like an actual human being this time. He asks Souya where he can find Ikusa and then leaves the restaurant in Souya and Kotetsu's hands.

Meanwhile, Yukiji has arrived back at the hotel and Isumi is tending to Hina who has apparently been possessed by an evil spirit -- but with the same symptoms as a cold. Isumi tells Yukiji that Hina'll instantly recover if someone else gets possessed by the evil spirit -- just like a normal cold.

Hayate finds Ikusa and they finally have a heart-to-heart talk as brothers after ten years. Hayate reveals that he understands why Ikusa made him go through this competition and that he would have given the "treasure" to him win or lose. Ikusa doesn't seem to disapprove, but he still claims that he's not Hayate's brother but that if his faint memories of his brother and family are true, then he would have been proud to have a brother who survived such a past and grew up to be so honest.

The talk is interrupted by someone exclaiming "found you," but we'll have to wait  some time before the next chapter since the manga is taking a one week break.

Review: This was a pretty good chapter. For once, things went as I would have liked them to and Hayate received some degree of character development here by realizing that he was taking the wrong approach the whole time.

Hayate was focused on winning the battle (the competition with Ikusa) when in fact, he wasn't looking ahead at the war (the reason Ikusa made up this competition in the first place). Thanks to his experiences during this beach arc, he now realizes that the competition itself didn't really matter and that he was actually being a jerk to his friends the whole time all because he was so dedicated to getting Nagi's inheritance back.

I have to commend Hata-sensei for his use of psychology in this arc (in the whole manga, actually... but that's a story for another day.) From a psychological standpoint, Hayate thought that winning the competition was the only way to get his "treasure" back from Ikusa, but thanks to the ridiculous things mentioned by both Yukiji and Fumi, he realized that this whole thing wasn't about winning at all. It was really just all about finding out what Ikusa's motivations were really all about with this whole competition. We could say that it's because he has an 8.92 million yen debt, but Nagi already disproved that assertion 3 chapters ago and Ikusa himself confirmed that it was initially just a joke. Thus, you could say that Hayate used a bit of psychoanalysis on Ikusa here.

In any case, I appreciated the talk between the brothers and with things all but wrapped up, I think this beach arc is finally coming to an end. I'd say we have 4-5 chapters or maybe even less to fully wrap up this arc.

While it's not over yet, I'd like to say a few things about this beach arc:
At least we know why Isumi's here now.
I like how things tie in quite neatly in this arc like Isumi suddenly showing up from out of nowhere in the previous chapter. Here, it's revealed that she probably showed up in order to help out Hina because she sensed a ghost or something. 

I really enjoyed the comedy here which is really a throwback to the tone of the series before the serious Athena arcs took precedence. Don't get me wrong, I liked the Athena arcs (mostly because of Nagi's chapters), but I didn't really find them to be all that special when compared to the other arcs (or lack thereof) in the manga.
Who do you think this is? You have 3 guesses! Make em count!
Speculation Corner: Well, there was a cliffhanger with some voice going, "found youuuu!" at the end of this chapter, so we'll focus on that for this speculation corner. I have 3 guesses.

  • Ruka Suirenji: I think that it's nice that Hayate realizes that he doesn't have to win this competition, but it would be even better if he actually did win -- and having Ruka show up and helping him win the competition with the help of her fame and camera crew is one of the best ways to win.
  • Sakuya: Well, Isumi's here. Even though the two aren't always together nowadays, I wouldn't put it past Sakuya to show up and somehow help out. She could do a lot just by herself and with her two butlers as well as machina, or she could just use her wealth to help out somehow, although I don't think Hayate would appreciate that.
  • Nagi and company: Although Nagi and Hamster just recently bailed out, I wouldn't put it past them to come back -- this time together with everyone else in order to help out Hayate. 
Regarding what Ikusa said about someone that he could grow to love in the previous chapter, I jokingly said in a comment that the one who best fits his description would be Hayate -- perhaps this chapter proves what I said to be true after all? In fact, Ikusa never stated outright that it was romantic love that he was referring to.  

Finally, I finished drawing this fanart of Nagi (again) just in time for this week's chapter review. What do you think? Isn't she cutieful? This is also requested by some Goddess of Gensokyo.
Nagi! Nagi! Nagi! Nagi! ... Nagi!

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