Following a three-month wait for a finale that was half-recap and half-nonsense, Wonder Egg Priority will go down in anime history as yet another promising passion project that was stymied by poor planning — exacerbated by the general state of the industry. Wonder Egg Priority‘s production woes have been thoroughly documented and were especially apparent in the twelfth and thirteenth episodes of the series. The thirteenth episode is particularly egregious given how it not only fails to make important emotional narratives of the four main characters resonate but how it inexplicably introduces even more details about in-universe mechanics that few asked for and were not tied whatsoever to any of the aforementioned emotional narratives.
What was most noticeable to me in these two episodes was the lack of flower language which, until that point, had become a visual story that ran parallel to the girls’ own individual character arcs. The use of both Victorian and Japanese flower language was so consistent — even in the expository Episode 11 that I personally disliked — that the absence of it in the final two episodes is jarring.
I’m still trying to work out my own feelings and disappointment regarding Wonder Egg Priority, but wanted to revisit flower language in the series one last time, through the opening animation sequence.
The most noticeable flowers in the opening sequence are narcissus or daffodils, which have a variety of meanings — including their mythological tie-in with their vain Greek namesake. Due to the story of Narcissus, these flowers can be seen as representations of vanity or unrequited love. Since they’re one of the first flowers to bloom in spring, they are also seen as signs of rebirth or new beginnings. More specifically in Japanese flower language, they mean respect.
In addition to daffodils, there is a small dandelion that appears on the pavement. It’s at the point in its lifespan where it’s putting out seeds. Like many yellow flowers, dandelions can represent happiness. They are also said to represent absolute faithfulness to a partner if given as a gift. It can also mean perseverance or overcoming challenges, and the seed state specifically is said to grant wishes if you blow on the dandelion puff to scatter the seeds.
As Ai is walking along a dirt path, we see baskets of morning glories in the foreground. Morning glories are specific flowers with many power meanings, most revolving around the fact that the flowers individually only last for a day before wilting. In Victorian flower language, morning glories were given as gifts of never-ending love, but also as reminders of mortality or unrequited love, especially if laid at someone’s grave. Due to a Chinese myth, morning glories also carry a strong meaning of both unrequited love and a never-ending desire for someone else.
In Japanese flower language, morning glories represent a willful promise to someone or a bond of love between people. As a framing device for Ai, this could hint at her devotion to others (she’s shown as someone who will do anything for not only her friends, but even people she’s just met) but also her unrequited feelings.