Yuri Kuma Arashi was the perfect show for me. And yet… I just could not come to love it. Because despite everything… it lacked heart. It’s characters did not feel real and endearing to me. Though I was happy, and pained, to watch their tale, in the end the most important thing was them and they just fell flat for me.
But though Yuri Kuma may not be my AOTY, I think I’ll always remember it in high regards. After all, it would be the finale to my 12 Days if it wasn’t special in some way, right?
The last episode was… well, it made up for a lot of bad the show had done. There were lots of cliffhangers and twists that felt there for the sake of having cliffhangers and twists. Maybe it was because it was Ikuhara’s first 12 episode show that the pacing was so bad. Maybe with 24 episodes, my problems with characters would have gone away and the twists and turns wouldn’t have felt so forced.
But alas, we cannot change what is already done.
Anyways, episode 12 features two major events. One is Kureha becoming a bear and joining Ginko in an absolutely beautiful scene where they kind of just ignore the haters so much they fuck off to gay heaven or something.
The second is my favourite scene in the entire series (and there was a lot of great lesbian bear storm action for me to eat up so this is a big thing to claim) where a rando, Ai Uchiko, rises above the hate surrounding her. She may become the evil they hunt next but she’s doing what she believes in.
To the bear they’ve tortured and used, she offers her love. In the end, Kureha and Ginko have inspired at least one person (and at least set doubt into the hearts of some of the other girls) to change. To give up their hate and ignorance and embrace that which they don’t understand, even in the face of the danger their fellow humans may present.
That scene was beautiful to me. The whole episode is. Yuri Kuma Arashi is worth everything just for that final episode.
Please read my actual post about the episode where I go into detail about my feelings for it (as well as link to a lot more cohesively written pieces that illustrate why YKA hates yuri anime as much as I do and why it’s so great).