The current outing of Binbougami Ga! is mildly deceiving. What seems to be a strictly humorous exercise hides a considerable amount of depth and development. Underneath the veneer of gags and jokes the friendship between Momiji and Sakura begins to take root and become something substantial.
Don’t worry; there are no tear-ridden, heart-felt exchanges or soul wrenching dialogue. Their friendship is taking shape in classic Binbougami Ga! fashion, with vicious spirit animals, shattered windows and a tennis match that nearly destroys the gym (and the spirit of two young boys).
To my delight we get to see the horny priest and Momou after a few weeks albeit for a single scene where they are running behind a squad of girls in gym class. I’m pretty sure this is the last we’ll see of them for a while as the cops were right on their tail. But can you throw a puppy in jail for indecent behavior? Seems a bit far-fetched.
After being heavily featured in the past two episodes, Ranmaru has taken a backseat. Her crush on Keita has been cemented and sets up the foundation for a battle royale over his heart between her and Ichiko. It seems a bit clichéd at first, using Ichiko’s previous friendship as a parallel for the impending conflict, but I am intrigued to see how the creators handle it. Ms.Sakura has proven to be a very delicate character so her finding out about Ranmaru’s infatuation might have some unexpected results.
One of my fears did come to bear in this episode: the introduction of a new Binbougami. Luckily she was quickly dealt with and promptly exited the script. I was worried that a shift in the series focus from building relationships to a conflict with a clear villain would take away from both comedy and the better dramatic elements. If the two female leads were ever forced to be on the same ‘team’, I feel that their dynamic would be compromised and their relationship would seem contrived. I prefer the natural growth that the story has opted for so far.
But the new Binbougami did have her charm like most of the supporting cast. It’s sad to see that she didn’t exactly make the cut long term, but the series just doesn’t have room for another crew member. Many of these larger than life personalities take up so much screen time.
Binbougami Ga! is just a lot of fun week in and week out. The characters have been the true stars of the show. Hopefully the series can manage its time properly so that every member of the supporting cast has another chance to shine before the curtains close of Ichiko and friends. It would be a waste considering the roller coaster of quality the audience has been put through to get here.