Aww, Chiaki didn’t play the Rach 2 after all! Stresemann was apparently using it as a way to make him go away and let him take over the S Orchestra again. On the other hand, we did get to see Nodame actually playing Chopin. I love Chopin–I often listen to Chopin nocturnes and preludes when I’m working on homework and papers. I also remember trying to learn a couple too, late in my piano-playing years. I never got the hang of them.
For the first time, too, we get some hints of more serious drama or at least character development–and coming from the most comedic character, too. We see some tantalizing hints at the parallels between Nodame and Chiaki and Stresemann and the school director, and we also see just how much confidence Stresemann actually has in Chiaki. Stresemann is rapidly becoming the most interesting character in the entire show–you could practically make him the lead and, at least so far, the show wouldn’t suffer too much in the story department. (Though I’d miss Nodame’s GYAPOs!)
On a more minor note: it’s weird but I remember when I first started watching this show, I didn’t particularly like either the OP or ED songs. The Ben Folds-like OP rapidly grew on me, though (I never skip it now), and I think it took until this episode for me to start appreciating the R&Bish ED. It is not the poetic and perfect ED that “Waltz,” the first Honey and Clover ED, was (it’s probably my all time favorite ED) , but it’ll do. Maybe the show is starting to finally get under my skin…which means it’s about time for the emotional trauma parts of the plot to start. 🙂