Classroom of the Elite
Episode 6

by Nick Creamer,

How would you rate episode 6 of
Classroom of the Elite ?

Classroom of the Elite continued on its merry way this week, crossing further into the realm of the charmingly ridiculous with some welcome absurd choices. But before that, we received the resolution to Toda and Sakura's stories, both of which were resolved as cleanly as possible. The show has arrived at a pretty consistent level of execution now, and a dramatic mode that seems to fit more comfortably than the first few episodes.

On the Toda side, things were resolved through a relatively clean trick orchestrated by Ayanokoji and Horikita. Ayanokoji noting the lack of surveillance cameras in the annex prompted Horikita to come up with a plan involving dummy cameras, where the two of them installed their own cameras and played it off like they'd always been there. Ayanokoji's implication that the school was “testing them” by not revealing the resulting evidence felt like a stretch, but a well-chosen one - not only was he playing against his opponents' existing fears, but it really does seem like this school might do such a thing. And so, in order to avoid getting expelled, the Class C boys retracted their accusations entirely.

On Sakura's side, the friction between the two versions of her personality came to a head when the camera store creep turned out to be a legitimate stalker. I didn't really expect a show like this to handle a potential rapist with any sort of grace, but even that conflict was handled fairly well. The show's framing of Sakura's attempted assault was imposing, but not really exploitative - the director seemed to understand that instilling a sequence like this with fanservice would be both tonally counterproductive and extremely gross, so the focus was instead on the assailant's ominous face and the overall claustrophobia of the situation.

Above-average execution was a general theme of this episode, from the nice dramatic angles of the Class C showdown to the use of ambient noises in Sakura's material. There were more striking individual compositions than usual, and neat transitions like using the teacher's cigarette smoke to introduce her helped sell the show's fundamental sense of melodrama. Classroom of the Elite's story is unabashedly larger-than-life, so I appreciated that this episode's production was able to sell its bombastic drama.

All that bombast came to a head in the episode's final act, where the Class C mafia boss smashed some heads, the Class A leader offered some grim proclamations, and Ayanokoji was interrogated about his “true self.” The show's been hanging Ayanokoji's big secret over our heads for a while, and the ultimate payoff didn't disappoint. Apparently, Ayanokoji's total perfection and lack of any emotional affect stem from some kind of grim science fiction childhood, where he was presumably experimented on or stuck full of brain juices or something similarly ridiculous. Classroom of the Elite is most enjoyable when it leans into its more absurd qualities, so I'm very happy to see the introduction of some classic evil scientists. It seems like this show is finally coming into its own.

Overall: B+

Classroom of the Elite is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.

Nick writes about anime, storytelling, and the meaning of life at Wrong Every Time.

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