Free! Episode Seven

free ep 7

That poor goldfish. 

Maybe its because I had a room-mate once who left her fishtank in direct sunlight (and never added water to the tank!), but I was cringing over that poor goldfish. Yeah, yeah, I know, it was just part of a dream, but that still got under my skin initially.


  • speaking of goldfish, I guess that and typhoon deaths are our recurring themes, huh?
  • KyoAni doing a trippy dream sequence was certainly unexpected, and it felt deeply weird; have they ever done this before? the closest I can think was the disorienting sequence when Yuuichi almost froze to death in the snow in Kanon, but that wasn’t a dream
  • so, Free!’s worked its way around to giving Rin some much-needed depth, although he still ranks dead last for me, and him being a jerk to Haruka and to Nitori (to a lesser extent) didn’t really help
  • I’ll admit to being pretty bored with the whole “you have talent, you must use it, its insulting to me if you don’t!” thing – KyoAni’s certainly trotted it out before, and its fairly common in any anime that features competition of some sort, and, yeah, its just boring at this point, even when it feels heartfelt, as is the case with Nitori; hell, Nitori is even way more reasonable about it than is usually the case, given that he follows up his tiny outburst with an apology to Rin, but it still had me fiddling with my rings instead of paying full attention
  • Nitori was smart to back off – the simple fact is that just because Rin has talent for particular events doesn’t mean he owes others his participation in additional events
  • Rin only entering one event is pretty stupid – there are generally limits on how many events one can swim in, but its certainly more than just one event, and the events are spaced far enough apart that swimming in one isn’t going to kill someone for another (unless you’re doing an event few people enter in, like 200m butterfly, but that event wasn’t even referenced)
  • I was honestly confused by the fact that Haruka didn’t even make the regionals for the 100m Free – this means that Rin only just made it himself as the number eight seed, which in turn means that their heat was the final heat… so apparently seven guys in slower heats performed better than their qualifying times; while its absolutely possible and is common for one or two people from slower heats to beat out folks in the best heat, seven is one hell of a stretch (do I get to brag here about beating two people in the best heat on an event to qualify for regionals back in high school on the 100 yard fly when I was in the second-best heat?)
  • $5 says Kou’s comment about needing a real coach leads to the pizza delivery guy becoming that coach within the next two episodes
  • Joe the Flying Fish! vertical jumps are SOOOOO important in swimming, bros!
  • I really love how Kou is depicted as very serious about coaching and managing the team but as also totally ga ga over all the chiseled physiques
  • shifting back to the goldfish… watching the shadows on the floor, made me think of Natsume Yuujin-chou, where Natsume’s friend Tanuma couldn’t see the spirits of goldfish in the pond at his home if he looked directly, but could see their shadows on the ceiling of his room at night


  • awww poor Nitori – he’s so adorable and so devoted to Rin, and Rin’s much too busy obsessing over Haruka!
  • and poor Makoto, too, as he seems like the doomed childhood friend this episode more than anything else; he looked so sad while Haruka was busily searching for Rin
  • honestly, a lot of what went on between Rin and Haruka previously, or, more specifically, how Rin behaved toward Haruka didn’t feel that out there for a rivalry, but Haruka looking totally crushed when Rin told him they’ll never swim together again was, well… bit BL-ish


  • they’re breathing every other stroke again, auggghhhhhh, that bothers me so damn much, its a HUGE waste of energy and it creates a lot more drag
  • in competition, not only are heats organized by people’s times, but so are the individual lanes themselves – the middle two lanes are typically for the fastest two swimmers in the event, but I’ll admit I forget how it breaks down after that
  • it was interesting to see how the swim meet was set up – I had blasts from the past when I saw all the swimmers camping out in that lobby-type area, although at some facilities the teams have to camp out on the deck because there really is no other room (it gets crowded pretty fast, as I’m sure you can imagine)
  • related to that, I was surprised to see how they lined people up for the different heats; in America the heats are all lined up behind the starting block, so you don’t have just the one person up on the block, you’ve got everyone right behind them
  • touchpads!!!! touchpads are so damn awesome! when I first started swimming, touchpads were NOT the standard, it was all done by hand with stop-watches, which isn’t nearly as accurate; with touchpads, too, the results post immediately to the scoreboard, so you don’t have to wait for the paper results to post to see how you placed within your heat
  • however, even with touchpads, there’s a person with a stopwatch for back-up in case the touchpad malfunctions or the swimmer doesn’t hit it hard enough, although stopwatch results often aren’t accepted as official times when one is trying to qualify for advanced competitions
  • …actually, I knew people who broke their hands because they hit their hand too hard on the touchpad (and the wall beneath it) in their zeal to ensure that their time was registered accurately… and then they swam additional races
  • lol, swimmers and hair dryers:

free ep 7 end card

  • I can count on one hand how many times I ever saw a swimmer use a hair dryer, even in winter… although I feel safe saying that KyoAni only put them there because they’re vaguely phallic >_>
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4 Responses to Free! Episode Seven

  1. nazarielle says:


    I’m shippin it till it sinks AND THEN SOME!

  2. First Time Poster says:

    * I guess it was the same typhoon who killed Gou’s parents and who traumatized Makoto. For more FATEFUL ENCOUNTER~, maybe the nice fisherman who gave goldfish to Makoto will be Gou’s father.
    * No comment on the naked guy in the endcard?

  3. dmitrij says:

    Great episode. I was always saying that Yamada is best Kyoani director, I hope after this episode someone else will admit this.

    Trippy scenes are pretty common for Kyoani. Haruhi, Hyouka, Nichijou, K-on… I think in most of their series is something like that. Most notable was part of Lucky Star ova with pet shop, which, someone said, could be Takemoto influenced by times when he worked with Akiyuki Shinbo on SoulTaker. It’s funny how this ova used same gimmicks that Bakemonogatari was later made of.

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