Content: (please note that the content portion of a review may contain spoilers)
After his collapse at the end of last episode, Hachiken’s friends sit fretting in the equestrian club room. Worried about their friend, they also know that they have to continue with the festival events. Lucky for them, Ayame (Aki’s middle school “rival”) shows up and agrees to help out, albeit in her over-the-top conceited way, and Aki finds Hachiken’s notes for the day, allowing them to pull off the jumps and the Ban’ei race as best as they can. These scenes are where much of the episode’s humor lies, mainly with Ayame showing off and then being forced to be part of the human Ban’ei race against Aki. But there are meaningful moments as well, like when Aki explains what’s happening in the jumping competition to a small girl. After the one of the horses refuses twice and gets disqualified, the rider still tries one more time and makes a jump. It’s because, Aki explains, they don’t want the horse to lose confidence in what he’s doing. “That tells the horse that he can still jump after failing.” A rather pertinent comment, considering the issues Hachiken is having.