Hyouge Mono 3 – an honest heart
May 4, 2011
Thanks to Ginnodangan for pointing out that I had missed the release of a subbed version of episode 3 of Hyouge Mono (Tea for Universe, Tea for Life!). And it turned out to be a pretty interesting episode, too. We get a little more development of several characters, and hints of a plot development.
We pick up at the cliff-hanger from last week. Sasuke realizes that Master Senno has invited him to tea, knowing full well that Sasuke obtained the loquatesque tea cup. He confesses to Master Senno, and thus earns the master’s confidence, and a place as his disciple. Sasuke then visits Oda Nabunaga’s palace, which blows his freaking mind.
Oda Nobunaga was developed in an interesting way. He has the wherewithal to dress in foreign clothes, and lacquer and guild his palace, but he also has the vanity to keep people like Sasuke around, because his personal enjoyment is insufficient; he also wants to see the awestruck expressions of others as he displays his treasures. He also is a man whose ambition seemingly knows no boundary. Having gone beyond the provincial aims of regional warlords, even unifying the entirety of Japan may not be enough to satisfy him. As he describes his intention to conquer China, Sasuke feels that ambition on such a grand scale is itself a thing of beauty.
Later Sasuke visits General Hashiba, who asks him to relate the events of a banquet he attended at General Akechi’s. If I understood correctly, General Akechi’s men are dismissive of General Hashiba (who they refer to as a monkey), but when they insult Lord Nobunaga, Sasuke refuses to accept it, which shows quite a bit of bravery, considering he was clearly outnumbered. General Akechi soothes everyone’s tempers, but Sasuke interperets Akechi’s use of a plain teapot, instead of a more beautiful one, given as a gift by Lord Nobunaga, as a veiled insult. In Sasuke’s mind, Hashiba showed proper respect for Lord Nobunaga by using a gift, but Akechi did not. It is difficult to know if he is thinking this through properly, as I don’t trust Hashiba, who acted duplicitously in the first episode. Regardless, something of consequence has been set up; some plot is afoot, and Sasuke finds himself in the midst of it.