Episodic Impressions: Smile Down the Runway – Ep. 9

Runway de WaratteWhat an episode! So much stuff happened but finally we’re at the festival and all the characters are not working together, but are rivals and I kind of like that idea.

Chiyuki 1

Initially, Chiyuki was going to model for Ikuto’s show which led him creating a whole theme based around her. Chiyuki is Ikuto’s muse so it made sense and it’s what I was expecting. The theme of wind and why he chose it was intriguing and honestly, I’d love to have seen what he would have made for Chiyuki using that theme.

However, they don’t end up working together. When Chiyuki forces Ikuto to go to Hajime’s place to apologise, she is confronted with Kokoro. The model who shows Chiyuki all her flaws and who Ikuto praises as a designer. That’s got to hurt because there’s just no winning against Kokoro. That being said, I will give it to Chiyuki – there is nobody like her when it comes to giving others a push. She stops Kokoro from following her manager and gives her an opportunity to prove her worth as a designer.

Chiyuki 2

It’s quite simple really: Kokoro’s manager will have to give up if Kokoro can win the competition with Chiyuki as her model. That’s a great plan but what I don’t understand is why Kokoro needs everyone else to push her instead of taking steps herself. She’s just too timid so I do wonder about her. It’s alright when there are people there to give you the push and encourage you but, in her case, she’s just not got that fight in her to properly stand up for herself. She can easily be shut down by her manager and she can’t fight for what she believes in which is concerning.

Ikuto 1 Ikuto 2

Anyways, this means Ikuto has lost his model and with that his wind theme goes out the window. He did think about throwing the competition and letting Kokoro win because he’s just too nice but after realising how excited his mother is to come see the show, that’s just an option. I’m glad he didn’t just throw the competition because that would basically be the same as looking down on your rivals and I doubt Chiyuki would have approved.

Ikuto 3

The theme Ikuto does come up with, harmony, is the same as Amano’s. As is the idea of harmony between men’s and women’s wear so this will be really interesting. We don’t get to see anything that Ikuto does but a lot of the time and effort Amano has put into his designs. I guess that’s partially to keep Ikuto’s designs a secret until the competition. Either way, I can’t wait to see what Ikuto’s designs look like and how this competition will unfold.


  1. I really am enjoying this show. What it lacks in fluidity (it can be a bit clunky, at times), it makes up for in deep understanding of characters, which helps with caring about what they want and why they want it. Which makes the hype genuinely effective and makes the actual “fights” (competition, in this case, as it’s not a battle Shounen) tenser. Thus the payoffs are much more resonant. All a longwinded way of saying “Show good at setup and payoff” XD

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hahahah I get what you mean. I really like the way the characters have been displayed over the episodes and how they’ve grown. Like you said, it makes whatever “fight” they’ll have quite tense. It’s been a fun anime to watch that’s for sure!

      Liked by 1 person

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