Mirai Nikki – 09

Hinata took possession of her father’s diary so she could help him become a god, turn back time, and start over with his family. She accepts several “left or right” challenges from Akise, with his diary and Yuki’s on the line. However, Yuno discovers he has no diary, and is merely guessing and gambling. When Mao makes for Yuki’s phone with a knife, Yuno stabs her, and everyone escapes. Hinata sics her dogs on them, but Yuki doubles back and asks for a truce, declaring Yuno his girlfriend, and offering his friendship. Fourth kills tenth, ending his role in the game, and Hinata is free.

This week serves up a much-needed helping of sanity to what threatened to turn into a show in which we can’t care about any of the characters because they’re all too damn crazy and random. Don’t get us wrong, Yuno still exercises her constitutional right to psychopathy, threatening to kill anyone and anything that gets between her and Yuki, until Yuki finally realizes if he’s ever going to make friends, he has to take her by the reins. That means acknowledging her as his girlfriend and future lover.

This works, and it redeems Yuki somewhat, who had been really driving us mad with his endless optimism. Turns out Hinata wasn’t as nuts as we’d first thought, as she just wants her family to be together. And Mao was just into Hinata, and thus fiercely loyal to her. Akise’s still a wild card, but that’s alright for now. We don’t know what guessing which hand a coin’s in has to do with being a world-class detective, but what are ya gonna do?

Rating: 3

Last Exile: Ginyoku no Fam – 08

With Fam and Gisey being tailed, the Sylvius finds herself over the Grand Lake, stuck between the might of the combined Ades fleet and the territorially aggressive Glacies. The Sylvius holds her own, but it isn’t long before she starts to take a beating. Fam goes out in her Vespa with Millia to go skyfishing as Glacies attacks Ades. When they return to the Sylvius, hidden in a cloud, they find a Glacies warship stuck to her and free it. Millia fires the shot that brings down the Anshar, the Ades flagship, and she and Fam return to the Sylvius, the day’s battle won.

Last week was one of the more bodaciously sky-battletastic episodes thus far, and the cliffhanger promised more to come. It didn’t disappoint, as this week a third player moves onto the board, the shy and isolated Glacies, whom we liken to Esthar from FFVIII. Their ships are suitably cool and foreign, as is their Russian (!) dialogue. We don’t speak Russian, but it all sounded good to us, and added flavor and strangeness to the proceedings. Is everything wrapped up in a dubiously neat and tidy bow, considering the deep shit they were in last week? Perhaps, but we don’t care if its done with this much pomp and style.

Tatiana Wisla shows why she wears the Captain’s pants by tossing the Sylvius around like a toy, bouncing it off of enemy ships, and shooting a hole in a cliff to scatter and confuse the fleets. There was a moment when they were about to literally hit a wall, when we thought of the old Tatiana, who might’ve curled into a ball and cried. But here, she laughs, rises to the occasion and gets her crew and ship out of trouble with flair that would make Alex Roy proud. Millia gets to take it straight to Ades thanks to Fam…but there’s a cost: Gisey gets left out, and doens’t take it well. To be continued.

Rating: 4

P.S.: They rearranged the ending theme this week and revamped the slideshow. We really like it, preferring it to the last one.