I love how to Haruka, everything about Ami is just wrong. I always thought that another facet of this is that the Inners and the Outers are a reflection of each other, and to Haruka, Ami is just a bad copy of Michiru. She runs on instinct, but Ami stops and thinks and plans. Both are elegant, but Michiru has a bit of fire, while Ami can be cold if you don't know her. Hell, their attacks use the same element, but Ami even got that wrong somehow! I find it fascinating! I love these girls so much!
SAME SO MUCH LOVE IT’S GOING TO MAKE MY HEART EXPLODE LIKE I JUST DROPPED A PACKET OF POP ROCKS DIRECTLY INTO MY AORTA
I can’t say that I see the Outers-to-Inners parallel quite so directly, but I really DO think there was an element of endless disappointment with Haruka that she got “stuck” with Ami. If Haruka was supposed to be partners with anyone, ti’s Michiru, and how dare Ami, through no machinations of her own, be there instead??
I still haven’t seen enough of Rei and Michiru yet to say for sure, but I think it’s really telling how Haruka and Ami couldn’t get along at all where Rei and Michiru did. I suspect there may be a lot of parallels between these two segments to come, but even if not, look at what we already have
This is how Haruka and Ami’s part begins:
And this is Rei and Michiru:
Both back to back, but Ami and Haruka with all that distance between them, literally not even on the same level. Meanwhile Michiru and Rei are back to back, but in the way that implies partnership.
Haruka orders Ami.
Michiru puts the decision in Rei’s hands.
As they run, Haruka leaves Ami behind. She’s immediately outclassed.
Rei effortlessly keeps up with Michiru. She’s an equal.
So far, at least, I think these particular parallels are commentary about Rei and Ami only peripherally. Mostly I think it’s talking about Haruka and Michiru.
Haruka, for all her friendly flirtiness just can’t actually deal well in high-stress situations with people who aren’t Michiru. When Michiru isn’t at her side, she’s off-balance.
But Michiru, she’s actually fine right now. She might not do so well with one of the other Inners, but at least with Rei, Michiru can and does work with her without a problem.
And I really, really love that instantly Rei and Michiru’s part shows us that whatever issue they’re going to face, that whatever their thing is going to be, it’s NOT going to be Ami and Haruka Take Two. Their conflict or problems will be borne of them, as individuals.
There’s nothing about this arc that is taking the easy or lazy way out, and I really can’t say enough fantastic things about how good it feels to be back with this kind of care and consistency.