The ending was so very bittersweet…
Tanda telling Chagum to get in the litter and ride, instead of helping him limp along, that it was embarrassing the litter-bearers. And Chagum saying it didn’t matter to him, he wanted to help his friend; did he even have any friends before?
And when they got to the gate, and he ran ahead to see his mother – I think Balsa was the only one that knew they’d probably never see Chagum again.
I had to laugh at Torogai saying that she was going to drink all the liquor they had in the palace – I think she could do it!! (And her little bunny in the basket when they were in the hot springs, how cute!)
When Chagum went to his brother’s room and the bird’s perch was there, empty, I totally lost it… I’m such a baby about this stuff. And then the head tutor was in the background, as sort of an apology, as if he’d let Chagum down.
I’m wondering if the Mikado himself ever had any friends, so perhaps he doesn’t understand why Chagum won’t forget Balsa and everyone else he came into contact with on his ‘adventure’. It would be a tough concept when you haven’t experienced it first hand. Apparently, he thinks giving out rewards is a fair trade for keeping his son safe and love has no place.
I, too, knew that Chagum would be waiting ‘off to the right’ at the end. Besides, did we really think that Balsa was going to leave without her spear? She smartly conned him into making his own decision about staying.
I liked everything about this anime; the voices, the music, the look, the feel, just everything. And even though I may never watch it again, I’ll probably buy it so I can show it to other people. It’s a good first anime for others.