shinuhodo no koi

The wait begins for the next season of my favorite reality TV show.

Terrace House Aloha State starts off even slower than Boys and Girls in the City. But whereas B&GITC is more about people adjusting to life with other strangers, Aloha State tosses an extra layer of cultural clashes. Many cast members move from Japan to Hawaii, and even a fairly benign location like Oahu presents cultural challenges.


The initial cast is fairly weak. Yusuke aka Eden Kai aka Slaybraham Lincoln aka James “Punished” Polk aka Alexander Slamington aka Millard Killmore is my favorite, as he reluctantly goes along with being the group’s troubadour. He’s a poor man’s Sandal-san. He is always happy and positive despite some horrible things done to him, and you just want him to find success and happiness. He makes it easy to root for him. He has one final scene in the very last episode where someone asks him to play his damn ukulele in the middle of a shopping district. Poor boy. Eric, who looks and acts like a middle-aged dad, is fairly forgettable until he leaves the house. His best part happens many, many episodes after he leaves. He also owns a pop-up shop that serves just iced and hot coffee. I feel like he should try to recruit a local Chromatic coffee barista to help him out because he seems clueless on coffee. He also is kind of a dick because he loves bringing up the fact that Yusuke is a virgin whenever he can. Yuya is… not as bad as the krumping guy from B&GITC. Yuya gets epically chewed out by a cast member later because he is kind of a slacker.


Lauren is the most interesting because she’s not Japanese. Her spoken Japanese is definitely better than mine, but I learned most all of mine by watching anime. I think she did too. She is a secret anime fan, and I wish the panel called her out on it. Naomi is one of the few 100% Japanese cast members, and she seemed like a fish out of water in Hawaii. She never seemed to jell with either other cast members or the locale. I though her time in the house was short, but later on a cast member wouldn’t even last five episodes. Avian is the other non-Japanese cast member, and I don’t think she watches as much anime as Lauren.

The main issue with the initial cast is that they are all too young. I think only two of the six could legally drink, and three were 19 and under. I guess one good moment came when Lauren, who was the same age as Rikopin, and an older guy started watching B&GITC, and they watch the Rikopin drama unfold.

(The secondary star of Terrace House is generally the food. We got so hungry watching B&GITC that we decided to go to Tokyo. Aloha State features a lot of American Japanese fusion food as well as surfer food. Get ready to see a lot of macaroni salad.)


B&GITC really picks up after Arman joins, and Aloha State picks up when Guy and Taishi join. Guy is one of my favorite cast members of either season. He is a walking sports anime protagonist, except this protagonist does kiss the hot model lady who digs him. Guy has a lot of great moments, and the fact he recovers from his catastrophically bad seashell collecting date is incredible. Taishi, man, I don’t know. He is like a middle-schooler trapped into a 29 year old body. One experiences the full range of emotions with Taishi. You might like him. You might hate him. You might like him again. You might hate him again. But, at the very end, you root for him. He has by far the most catchphrases and memes associated with him, partly because he becomes the longest staying cast member.

(Also Arman shows up not once but twice in cameos. It’s good to see him and Martha still together and happy– oops– is that a B&GITC spoiler?)

The key to Taishi is “shinuhodo no koi,” which is why he joined Terrace House: to find a love worth dying for. Believe me, every women he dates is confused by this, and it doesn’t help that Taishi announces it whenever he can. He also likes to evaluate women with the, “She’s the third girl I have ever met that I could marry” method. Only he announces this. In public. After meeting her two days ago. It’s like he has watched too many Disney movies, and he’s convinced that he’s a Disney princess waiting for a prince to arrive to save him from his loveless life. Eventually, he understands and gets into the joke as well, but he feels like a walking 1990 manga shounen manga character. It also doesn’t help that he’s constantly working out and swinging his katana, which leads the panel to start calling him “The Guilty Samurai.” If we crossed Cathy and Himura Kenshin, we get Taishi. “Shinuhodo no Koi” becomes this season’s “Happy.”

Much like how the last six episodes of B&GITC are its best, the best of Aloha State comes at the end. Not only do we have dangling threads with Taishi and his love to die for, we have another major plot that we have the emergence of a true Terrace House villain. Even the panel is shocked that things turn out this way. I think a lot of people think this villain is just a classic narcissist, but I think this villain has a major drinking problem. I think this cast member has a serious drinking issue and probably should seek help. The first two or three episodes that this cast member appears in seem normal, but then I don’t recall seeing this person sober even once after that.


Overall, I really enjoyed Aloha State. It has a different feeling than B&GITC, and that’s a good thing. The formula changes just enough with the setting being in Hawaii and most of the cast members being more ethically diverse. The panel is as sharp as always. I love their head cannon fan fiction, though Tokui pretty much steals the plot to Steins;Gate at one point. The panel even calls out whenever they think Wez is sleeping around. “He tapped that. He definitely tapped that,” exclaims You-san. The translation quality of Terrace House Aloha State and Fate Grand Order are polar opposites. Wassup homies, WTF is a “Knight of Owner”?


My main complaint is that it could have gone for another twelve episodes. Ryo and Mariko join late, and they thrust into the middle of everyone else’s drama, and they barely get any chance to shine. Mariko even jokes on her social media that she only had a crying scene. Ryo could have been the next Handa-san with his cool and collected demeanor, but he is barely on screen. He has gives the best parting gift of anyone in the history of Terrace House, and I feel confident saying that despite not having watched all of B&GND. He visits a clothing store and visits a coffee farm. They also cut Taishi’s thirtieth birthday party, which Terrace House tweeted some clips on their Japanese twitter.


The main charm of Terrace House, for me, is still all the same moments that both the cast and panel have fun with. From the almost Costo-rehash (guys, if a girl wants a date at Costco, it’s not a date) to when Guy tried to stick an apple up Lauren’s nose to when Chika-chan sat in front of Taishi wearing a seductive swimsuit while eating a banana to when the cast gathers around an iMac to watch Guy’s surfing competitions to when Guy abandons his date in the middle of a date to go crabbing to Wez rapping about how much he loves Instagram to when Naomi tries to get a job at as hostess to when Ryo admits he rode on the Harley with Taishi to a dog named “Bruno Mars”… Terrace House is about those small life moments and small victories and small losses. There’s no saving the world. There’s no big bad guy (except well maybe this season). There’s no abyss to descent, student council to overthrow, or mystical dragon to kill. But there’s plenty of curry to make, friendships to celebrate, and maybe just maybe some time to find a love worth dying for.

See you next time, Terrace House.

2 Responses to “shinuhodo no koi”

  1. This sure is anime.

  2. Always wondered why the stuff is called reality when it is some of the most heavily scripted tv. Maybe it is an allusion to a proposal that it somehow is how real people supposedly act.

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