Like Mother, Like Daughter?
The storyline that was begun in the last episode was continued this week as the crew airdrops in to Grimwald to rescue Mina from the clutches of Galderbroug, who is in a bid to take over Grimwald from House Restall. The beginning of the story last week picked the series up from the repetition that was threatening to deep-six any interest in the show, and led to Mina being kidnapped after a fight with energy sucking blobs. Unfortunately, strategy is not Ryousuke’s strong point, so rather than heed Lisara’s plan to gather some forces for an attack, Ryousuke takes off for where Mina is being held as soon as they touch down, and immediately gets in much more fight than he, or even the combination of Ryousuke, Lisara, and Quele, can handle. They’re saved by Iria, who unbeknownst to them has been asked to be a double agent of Galderbroug’s by her employer Merlot (seeking to find favor after the balance of power shifts), and retreat to House Restall to lick their wounds.
The show uses this setup to ramp up the fanservice, as the servants of Armea, Lisara’s mother, climb into bed to treat a naked Ryousuke. But it is clear that even if his body is healed, he’s lost most of the confidence that he had, as he can’t enjoy it. Is Lisara’s presence making him too self-conscious, or is it the memory of his battle failure, including getting Quele injured? With Ryousuke suffering from PTSD, and Quele still recovering from injuries suffered in battle, Lisara takes off with Iria to fight Galderbroug. Quele isn’t that out of commission, however, and takes the opportunity to proposition a naked Ryousuke by undressing at his bedside! I’m pretty surprised at such a bold move by Quele, who has been claiming that she’s in love with Ryousuke (egged on by Mina), but hasn’t been able to catch his eye from the brightness that is Lisara. Is this her chance with Lisara out of the way? How will Ryousuke react? He’s always been a “look but don’t touch” guy. Or will he ‘treasure’ Quele in a new way?
Next time check the train schedule, Mina!
Boku H had a decision to make regarding Ryousuke and Mina’s relationship. We knew that Mina loved Ryousuke, but did he know it? So Mina, trapped in a tower like Rapunzel, gives us a flashback scene showing some of her good memories with him, ending up with the two of them behind the school next to the train tracks as she takes the roundabout confession. And of course, the train rolls by right as she gets to the “suki da” part, and Ryousuke typically misunderstands. Whether it was intentional or just not hearing is left to the viewer, because seriously, who can’t understand what goes between a stammered “I” and “You” (or in their case after “Watashi wa koto ga”)? But either way, it was really really cliched and trite. She couldn’t find a better way to say it? They spend all the time together anyway. Tell him at home! Tell him when you’re ON a train! Honestly, I think it would have been better if she’d never tried to confess at all, just been secretly pining for him, rather than the usual ‘try once and give up’ shrinking violet.
Where’s the Clean Air Act when you need it?
The thing I’ve got to mention as ugly this week, as it’s finally pushed me far enough to complain, is the color cast that so much of the show has. Every fight in skirnir, and now the entire realm of Grimwald, looks like it’s has a yellow smoggy nature to it. Also, the skirnir fights also have a really annoying background whine. I guess it’s a way to try to save money on art, but it really gives the whole series a cheap feeling, as well as a claustrophobic and dirty atmosphere. Bleah. I can see why Lisara might want to escape there. Maybe Galderbroug will start some sort of EPA and clean up the place.
Extra Fanservice Shots! (Click for larger)