Laid-Back Camp – Ep. 10

My original review for Episode 10 was the first standalone episode reviews I did after covering three episodes at a time so there’s less pressure with this and the next two reviews. I say I’m the most content with those posts but re-reviews entail the whole season or series and I’m sure there’ll be something more or new to say here.

The first half of the episode concludes Rin’s trip from the last one. Having overslept (still wondering about mustached Nadeshiko), Rin makes a beeline to the campsite at night. A undercurrent surrounding this development is Rin facing the limitations to solo camping. On the way to the destination, Rin sees a roadblock, It’s thanks to Chiaki’s intuition and prior knowledge that Rin learns that the sign might’ve been left there and the road is actually available. Later, Rin struggles to set up her tent due to the wind pushing everything away. That can be chalked up to Rin making a rookie’s mistake due to stress caused by arriving at the campsite late but one can infer that Rin would have an easier time if she had an extra pair of hands to set things up.

This naturally coincides with the Outclub trying to ask Rin to join them for a Christmas trip. Episode 1 actually gives Rin’s answer away with its cold opening being a flash-forward, presumably showing everyone on the Christmas trip. Even then, I suppose it’s a given that Rin would ultimately choose to tag along. I do like that Rin declines the offer at first. That fits more with her character than if she had accepted it from the get go. With her, it ought to be after thinking it over some more that Rin reconsiders.

It’s Ena who gives Rin a little push in accepting the invitation. The former says it best that there is a different kind of fun to be had with camping in a group and it really wouldn’t hurt to give it a try. Ena also brings up Nadeshiko and while she claims to be lying, she’s not wrong that Nadeshiko really wants Rin to be a part of the Christmas trip. Furthermore, she knows how much Rin enjoys camping with Nadeshiko. It’s also entirely possible that what really convinces Rin is Ena mentioning that Chikuwa will be joining the trip as well. If that honestly is the case…that’s fair. I can speak from personal experience that dogs are a powerful means of persuasion.

Mind you, Rin is still very much a solo camper at heart and very much an outsider to the Outclub. The episode conveys that much visually by having Rin absent from the club’s meetings and leaving much of the planning to her peers. Despite that however, Rin is actually the one who makes the biggest contribution to the trip which is deciding the location. She even picks a place that meets all the criteria the Outclub gives for their ideal campsite for the holiday season. It just goes to show that Rin can be a team player if need be and if she thinks she has something to add to the table.

So finally, after a whopping ten episodes, the Outclub finally has a new member. Does this mean they can finally upgrade from the storage closet? Not exactly. While Ena is joining the the club for the Christmas trip, her membership is treated as a trial and nothing more. Still, Ena makes a fun addition to the roster. Her own quirks let her fit in the club just fine while her more laid-back attitude (pun not intended) and bemused comments plays off nicely to the more energetic banter among the three established members of the club.

It never ceases to amaze me just how freaking cheap this club is. Aoi got free meat from her job at the supermarket. Chiaki denies herself a shopping spree and instead buys a campfire tent on sale. Nadeshiko…has no money as far as I can tell. I give these girls a pass because you should make do with whatever you can procure, especially if it’s free, but my goodness, these girls just can’t take a break with their budget. The best part is whenever Ena brings up money one way or another. Some of her expenses for equipment are being covered by her father but even so, Ena is looking to have better gear than the actual members of the club by default. Shortly after that, Ena asks if the five of them are going to exchange gifts, what with the trip happening on Christmas and all. Needless to say, the idea doesn’t sit will with her budget conscious clubmates and they come up with excuses to not get gifts (Chiaki does it the funniest with her friendship speech). Geez, at least give everyone a $1 gift card or something.

Ena isn’t the only addition to the club as we soon also get Toba-sensei as the advisor. Technically, the Outclub already has the Hiking club advisor, Ohmachi-sensei, overseeing them (hence why they’re allowed to make a fire on campus; seriously, that had me wondering for weeks). Since Ohmachi-sensei is too busy with the Hiking club (clearly he is if Episode 10 is his first ever appearance), he hands advisory duties over to Toba-sensei.

And yes, Toba-sensei is indeed the drunk lady Rin and Nadehsiko met back in Episode 7. I can finally say that as Nadeshiko figures it out herself in this episode. The way in which she does is hilarious; Toba-sensei accidentally mentions bringing beer to the trip and Nadeshiko puts two and two together by doodling the drunk lady’s appearance over her in a photo the club takes together. It actually feels a bit strange seeing Toba-sensei prior to drinking 12 bottles of bear. She’s the complete opposite of her drunken self; far more formal and soft-spoken in general and she even gets a little insecure when Nadeshiko finds out who she really is. Regardless, we have a drunk teacher and camper in our roster of characters, something that I find both unexpected and hilariously awesome, The whole Christmas trip in general is shaping up to be a promising adventure.


Thanks for reading!

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