Stella Women’s Academy, High School Division Class C3: Episode 4 – “Learn to Hit the Target Without Firing”

Stella Women’s Academy, High School Division Class C3 is an anime series set at Stella Women’s Academy, and focuses on a new student named Yura Yamato. Yura is a new freshman at the school, and she’s a timid girl with a rather vivid imagination. Yura ends up joining the C3-Bu Club, which is a club at the school that plays “survival games” with air guns.

At the beginning of the fourth episode, the C3-Bu Club is playing a survival game. During the game, Yura finds herself going into her imagination again and being distracted from the game; because of this, her team loses. Afterwards, Sonoko tells her that whoever has the most fun during the game wins, and that everyone is playing a different survival game. Yura says she wants to get better in order to win for real, so Sonoko says she will train her; Rento comes along.

The training takes place at a shrine at the top of the mountain. Sonoko lets Yura borrow a gun of hers that’s known as a Scorpion, and it was one Sonoko’s master had given her. While at the shrine, Sonoko tells her that in addition to the fox deity that’s worshipped at the shrine, people also secretly worship a military god from the Heike clan in the late Heian period. No one knows his name, but he was a handsome young prodigy who was unmatched with a bow by the age of 15.

For the training, Sonoko hangs up a coin and tells Yura she needs to hit it. They start rather close up, but Yura has problems. Sonoko explains to her that survival games aren’t about precise shooting, but rather the shooter and the target must become one and the same. After this explanation, Yura is able to hit the coin. Sonoko has her take three steps back and try again; before she fires, Yura sees a man in a fox mask where the coin is. After seeing this, she is no longer able to hit the coin.

When the three get on the train to go back to school, Yura discovers that Sonoko’s gun isn’t in her bag. At the next stop, Yura gets off and goes back to the shrine. When she gets there, she sees the man in the fox mask again. He tells her his name is Chojiro, and that he is the military god that Sonoko had talked about. He says he needs Yura’s imagination power to help him, because according to him, everything in this world will be as she wills it. He also adds, “That is, in truth, a great power that can swallow whole worlds. You are not running away to an illusion. You are making your world and your illusion one and the same. Therefore, the whole world is your own place.”

The rest of the episode focuses on what happens when she tries to help Chojiro, as well as on a conversation Yura has with Sonoko, and the end of Yura’s training.

When I finished this episode, my first reaction was “Wow!” This episode takes the series in a much more serious direction than the previous three episodes did. This episode helps to prove that this series is more than simply just another “cute girls with guns” show.

Also, it appears that there could potentially be more to Yura’s imagination than the audience previously realized. As I saw in some of the comments on Crunchyroll, I wonder if Yura’s imagination is going to have powers to affect her world that are similar to the power Haruhi Suzumiya has in The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya.

Episode four has already taken a series that I had been impressed with and added elements that could potentially make it even better. I’m looking forward to seeing if I’m right when I watch the next episode.

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