"Hey, Nana. That summer you longed for more than anyone, the one we couldn't get back, is right here. I'll always be waiting. For ten years... twenty years... fifty years..."
Hate is a strong word. So to say that I hate this ending would be a little too much... but not really far off.
It's not that it's a bad episode, on the contrary, it's stellar. We see Nana laying down some harsh words on Nobu which hurt all the more because they are not entirely untrue. Shin and Yasu look at it from the other side and they are also pretty spot on.
Which shows what kind of terrible position Nobu is in. He still loves Hachi, that much we know. I don't doubt that Hachi still loves Nobu either, perhaps even more than Takumi, whom I don't believe she truly loves.
But unfortunately it's not that simple. The choices here are not black and white, they are white seeped through with black, black infused with white. I also don't believe each choice is truly easy, but I do think one is a whole lot easier than the other.
And here, in the ultimate do or die moment, he chooses the easy, but noble route. Honestly, I can't even really reject Nobu's decision here. In this situation the line between easy and considerate is blurred beyond recognition. My precious critique towards Nobu never buckling down for the hard choice and chickening out still stands. When push comes to shove, I still think Nobu is a bit of a coward. It's easy to say that Nobu chooses Hachi's happiness here, but that also implies him not believing he could make her happier than Takumi in the long run, which in turn says not a whole lot of good about Nobu.
All this was extremely well done, the imagery was fantastically on point, the soundtrack was stellar, ending with my favorite ED and the writing was excellent as usual.
But it's still a crap ending, for one reason and one reason only: it's not an ending. The future segment gives some amount of... perspective, I guess. I wouldn't call it closure. Point being, this is not an ending, it's a start, a start to a whole new dimension to the story and it kicking up a notch. There are so many things still unresolved, which is kind of the point. There should have been a second season a long time ago, but there lies Nana's Achilles heel: the goddamn hiatus.
I hate to leave it on a sour note, but the show leaves me no choice. Personally, the lack of closure knocked this show down a notch from a 10 to a 9. It has its faults, which become more apparent on re-watch, but I just can't get around the numerous well done scenes.
There are a lot of things I still want to say about the show, most notably about the claim whether it's realistic or not (anyone who has been reading some of my posts should know that my answer is a resound, unwavering YES), but I will leave that for another time and another place (maybe the Non-Currently Airing Show Thread).
So I'll leave by saying it was a pleasure doing this with you all. Even though I missed half of the re-watch, I still read all your comments and I enjoyed the first-hand reactions to this amazing roller coaster.
Another shout to /u/Are_you_daft for organizing these threads, they were amazingly well-put together with the references to each previous discussion.
Hopefully I will see you all at another re-watch, or maybe, just maybe... a miracle will come through and I will see you guys for season two, with those magical words.