Higehiro or I Shaved. Then I Brought a High School Girl Home episode 5 aired on May 3, 2021, and it dives deeper into a mysterious character that is entering more of the main story and still remains controversial among fans: Gotou Airi.
Imagine you are a 28-year old office woman, and you find out your co-worker whom you’ve had long-term mutual feelings for has been secretly living with an attractive high-school girl. How do you confront them?
In this episode, Ogiwara Sayu meets Gotou for the first time at her and Yoshida’s home. This scene is interesting because we, as the audience, do not know much about Gotou either; both Sayu and the audience mainly know Gotou-san as the famous lady with I-cups that Yoshida is in love with, so in a way, we are meeting her as well.
After awkwardly introducing themselves, the two girls send Yoshida to buy some groceries so they can have a private talk. Similar to Sayu’s conversation with Mishima last episode, Gotou-san asks Sayu several questions about her past and how a high schooler from Hokkaido ended up living with her 26-year old coworker.
Ogiwara explains some of the hardships in her life, to which Gotou shows genuine concern. She listens like a caring mother despite her awkward position, which shows how understanding of a person she is.
Sympathizing for the runaway’s past, Gotou still makes it clear to Sayu that she eventually needs to face her problems and return home to her parents. She says a human can only be a high schooler once and should enjoy doing so while he or she can. Realistically, Sayu knows she cannot stay with Yoshida forever and accepts Gotou’s honest advice. She cries as she faces this harsh reality and the two have a wholesome moment.
Then, Sayu asks Gotou if she has feelings for Yoshida. The woman confirms, assuring that her feelings for him are real. Sayu says she will support them and is happy his love is being returned, once again faking a smile, which Gotou seems to notice and be concerned about. She believes the high schooler’s hidden feelings will raise an issue later and speaks with Yoshida to make sure he handles himself properly.
Gotou’s intentions in meeting Sayu prove to be purely good, as she does not see the high schooler as a nuisance, but a child who needs correct guidance. This scene displays Ogiwara’s moral character as well, as many people her age would react stubbornly to a lecture from an envied love rival.
Meanwhile, Yoshida bumps into Mishima on the way back home, who reveals she actually followed him there out of suspicion of him and Gotou-san leaving work together. Mishima confronts him about his secrecy towards her, stating that it hurts her feelings and demanding the truth. After he explains everything, she points out the oddness of Gotou and Sayu’s meeting and asks Yoshida a very important question: who does he prioritize, Sayu or Gotou?
Yoshida cares about Sayu platonically and wants to help her, at the same time possessing feelings for Gotou and will likely pursue a relationship with her. He cannot maintain his current relationship with each of them, as eventually, living with a high school girl will cause problems for his personal life, which Mishima and Gotou play the role of forcing him to realize.
The episode ends giving Yoshida an important question he must consider in order to move forward with those he cares about. We are excited to see how he and the other characters grow!
If you enjoyed episode 5 of Higehiro, be sure to vote for it as the best of Spring 2021 Week #5!
All images are from Higehiro Episode 5 on Crunchyroll.