Nagi no Asukara
Episode 10 – The Saltflake Snow Falls and Falls
The plot finally matches the absurdity of the premise in this episode of Nagi no Asukara. Huge revelations are abounds as well as a confession that we all knew was coming, but didn’t expect so soon.
Uroko finally reveals the truth of what is going on to Hikari and Manaka; that devastating climate change is underway for both the ocean and land. Once again it’s tied to the Sea God, who seems to like freezing the world over whenever people leave the sea and forget about him.
This won’t happen for another 50-100 years apparently, but the saltflake snow will continue to fall and cause temperatures to drop. The solution? Hibernate everyone in Shioshishio and forget about the surface dwellers. The ena that protects the village people can also be used to go to sleep for long periods of time. The question is, how long will they sleep for and will everyone wake up? This dilemma eats away at Manaka more than anyone else throughout the episode.
Hikari finds this hard to believe but he grudgingly accepts. He is more concerned about what to do with Manaka. He probably feels like an idiot for hugging her out of nowhere in the last episode and getting pseudo-rejected. More importantly, he is still determined to do the boatdrift ceremony as it’s logically the only way to give the Sea God strength and thus save the world from freezing.
Manaka herself doesn’t know what to feel about Hikari, like she’s almost scared of change amongst her circle of friends. A conversation reveals that Chisaki is a little naive thinking that the surface people are better off not knowing and that they’re still different from the villagers. Kaname begs to differ, saying that Tsumugu would like to know what’s going on. Hikari decides to talk to Uroko.
It seems like Uroko isn’t interested in saving the people on the surface even with Hikari’s plan. But he allows them to go back up and warn them. Akari doesn’t seem too concerned about her incoming fate when told, and neither are the school kids. The fact that this will happen in the future rather than tomorrow makes the issue less pressing for everyone if they believe it at all. Nevertheless, Hikari is still determined to make the boatdrift ceremeony a reality.
An adorable scene with Sayu and Miuna sees Sayu organising who to give all her stuff to when she dies. Miuna doesn’t want to accept this fate and mentions how Akari will stay awake with her new family rather than sleep undersea. The divide between the two people is crystal clear at this point: one side will die, while the other will hibernate and stay alive. Here Sayu remembers her crush on Kaname and how they will be apart before finally realising the extent of the calamity.
Some words of wisdom from Tsumugu’s gramps. Weather and environmental changes aren’t fixed in one lifetime, nor are they inherently “good” or “bad”. What’s bad for humans isn’t necessarily so for other life on Earth. As the undersea village prepares to hibernate by eating a huge feast, Manaka is still unsure. How long will they sleep for? Will everyone wake up at the same time? Too many variables and I’m pretty surprised no one cares to find out more.
In a powerful moment, Manaka thinks about Hikari and his determination to do the right thing for everyone throughout the show. Did I mention I love the sound track? It surprises me every now and then.
The last scene is a sledgehammer. With little time remaining before hibernation, Kaname states to Chisaki that he loves her. About time!! The best part of this is that she had no idea, none whatsoever, that this was coming since she was chasing Hikari the whole time. This guy, Isaki Kaname, is the show’s sleeping giant. I can’t wait to see her reaction in the next episode.
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