The first half of the episode is basically “the calm before the storm,” with lighthearted moments and scenes establishing the next opponent for Karasuno.
First, there’s the interactions between Ryu and his childhood friend, Kanoko. We get to see some flashbacks of when they were kids, and those flashbacks were adorable. I loved how broken Ryu was at the beginning of the episode when Ennoshita told Ryu that he had a chance with Kanoko. And as we see Kanoko talking with her teammate, she obviously does have feelings for Ryu. But when Ryu and Kanoko meet up later, it’s an awkward scene that ends with a misunderstanding. Later, Ryu finds out that he “misunderstood the misunderstanding” (I’m basically quoting him here). I’m sure there’s still more to come on this storyline, which I expect we’ll probably see something during the next season that’s scheduled to start in July 2020.
Coach Ukai shares what he knows about the next opponent, Inarizaki High. They are considered as the second best team at the spring tournament. Kageyama spent time with Atsumu Miya, one of the members of the team. It’s also revealed that Atsumu has a twin brothers who’s also on the team. The players and the audience are also introduced to a couple of other strong players on the team.
We get to see the very beginning of the match between Karasuno and Inarizaki High. Inarizaki has a large cheering section, including an impressive band. Oh, and Atsumu also has a bit of a female fan club. We discover that unlike the cheering sections of previous teams, the cheering section for Inarizaki actually boos when Asahi, the first server for Karasuno, goes to serve the ball. As Usaki says, this cheering section is well-trained to be quiet for their own server but to be loud when the opposing server is up.
Unfortunately, the match is just getting going when the episode ends. And with this being the last episode for this season, that means we have a three month wait until we can finally see what happens. I feel a little teased, in a way. We’re just getting the excitement going, and then it suddenly stops. And knowing that it’s going to be three months until the story continues, it’s a little frustrating. Oh well. At least I know I have the next season of Haikyu!! to look forward to this summer.
Additional posts about Haikyu!!: