Ginga Kikoutai Majestic Prince – 07

Hitachi Izuru, Asagi Toshizaku, Irie Tamaki, Kugimiya Kei, Suruga Ataru

The Wulgaru brass plan an attack on the “lamata” from their stronghold in order to fulfill a prophecy. Meanwhile, Komine and the GDF plan to destroy Wulgaru’s forward base, Ragazza, which is close to their own base at Ceres. The Princes try to get used to their new home of Star Rose and interacting with their pit crews; Rin also appoints Yamada Peko to handle their scheules and everyday lives. They then board the Godinion and prepare to participate in the battle, which starts prematurely when the Wulgaru strike first. Among them is Prince Pleguzes Jiart, who is eager to see Theoria in action.

This week fully half of the episode is spent introducing us to the Wulgaru that were teased at the end of last week’s episode. We weren’t too impressed by their goofy designs, and came away from this episode not any more impressed. They’re dysfunctional, but not in a charming way like Team Fail – they’re just a bunch of arrogant pricks who can’t stand each other, and we can’t really blame them. We’re of the mind that a really interesting enemy is one that you end up kinda liking despite the fact they’re villains, and half of you roots them for while the other half is for the good guys. We don’t see that happening here. Not even a little.

Their reveal also suddenly dropped like nine new characters in our laps at once, and none of them were memorable. In fact, we liked the pit crews better, including Izuru’s. Not only are they friendly and helpful in the mess hall, they even stand up to him when some other officers try to bully him. We’re not sure what exactly Yamada Peko is supposed to contribute to the rapidly expanding cast, but hey, at least she’s really easy to draw! Otherwise, cats and kittens, it was a build-up episode. The battle will unfold next week; the first we’ll see from the perspectives of  both Human and Wulgaru pilots.

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Rating: 6 (Good)

Stray Observations:

  • Wulgaru servants must suck blood from their masters and give in to their sexual advances without complaint.
  • Lt. Amane is just barely containing her contempt for her CO Komine. But she can’t deny, the man cleans up for the cameras like a boss!
  • The Princes are so uncomfortable in their huge new dorms, they all naturally gravitate together in one of them…usually Asagi’s.
  • Why the hell does Asagi’s pit crew have a little kid again? That’s just random!
  • Prince Pleguzes Servantbanger XIV is interested in Theoria. That might be interesting…assuming we knew who she was by now (we don’t).
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Hataraku Maou-sama! – 07

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Maou’s new neighbor introduces herself as Kamazuki Suzuno and offers to cook him a meal. Emeralda sends Emi a package full of elixir disguised as vitamin drinks that will help restore her powers. While stalking Maou, Emi notices Suzuno in his apartment and investigates, and is eventually invited in. She warns Suzuno not to get too close to Maou. Maou has his first shift as supervisor, but Chiho is distraught when she sees the homemade bento Suzuno made him. Emi is attacked at a convenience store by an unknown assailant with the ability to nullify her sacred sword, but is saved by the clerk.

And then there were six. What started with just Maou and Ashiya transported to earth has now grown threefold with the addition of Urushihara and most recently Suzuno. While Urushihara started out as the bad guy and then became a web-surfing bum, Suzuno’s true motives remain elusive. She came from Ente Isla, but even Emi isn’t sure whether she’s a human or a demon, or what exactly she wants. All she knows is, she’s quickly inserted herself into Maou. Things take another turn for the suspicious when Emi is attacked not long after metting Suzuno, though her attacker was a guy.

While sweltering in the summer heat, Emi wonders if she’s looking at the Maou and Ashiya situation all wrong: maybe they really don’t mean any harm and simply want to live out their lives as law-abiding humans. Part of her wants that to be true, but she still can’t be sure. And even if she was, parties beyond her and Maou are inserting themselves into their lives, and aren’t going to let anyone have normal lives. They’ll attack without warning in conspicuous places, and they may come with kind greetings and homemade elaborate lunches. But the fact is, they’re all threats to the status quo that both Emi and Maou would rather simply enjoy indefinitely.

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Rating:7 (Very Good)

Stray Observations:

  • Suzuno is voiced by Itou Kanae, AKA Saten Ruiko, SAO’s Yui, Ohana, and others. Her approach with Suzuno is feminine yet mature, balancing her small stature with immense underlying strength.
  • Asakura Azumi voices Emeralda, a bit too airy and feathery for our tastes.
  • Chiho considers the homemade two-level bento (with heart rice inside) a challenge to her position as Maou’s betrothed.
  • We don’t know who voiced the convenience store clerk, but he had a cool accent.

RDG: Red Data Girl – 07

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Mayura tests Miyuki by sending ninja after him who are controlled by Masumi, and he must either find the true Masumi or break his barrier. He can do neither and is saved when Suzuhara tells him where Masumi is, and the test proves he’s a newbie just as he claimed. Manatsu gets a message that Tabi has fallen ill and heads to the stables to tend to him. Masumi fills in for him on the trip, but Mayura isnt happy Manatsu has gone alone. After Kisaragi performs a purifying dance, but Masumi is strong enough to resist it. The next morning Izumiko and Miyuki visit Manatsu, and learned he’s euthanized Tabi. Mayura confronts him, not wanting them to be apart, but Manatsu didn’t want her to “choose” him. The spectre of Tabi coalesces, and Manatsu mounts him and rides off.

This week we delve, along with Izumiko and Miyuki, intot the depths of the very unconventional Souda family. Mayura is one of the most powerful people in Houjou Academy, but draws much of her strength from the bond with her triplet brothers, one of whom has already passed away. She shows no mercy in testing Miyuki, and is only mildly apolgetic after she’s proven wrong. In her mind, she had to know one way or another, and it wasn’t something she was going to trust his word about until he knew he was who he said he was: a novice mountain monk. If she were serious and counted Miyuki as an enemy, it’s made pretty clear he wouldn’t stand a chance. This goes against expectations, in that we thought we’d see some new power of his awaken.

Still, we don’t mind that that didn’t happen, either; it means he’s been honest in his doubt these last few episodes. Instead of Miyuki, it’s Manatsu who undergoes a transition this week, after Tabi dies. He actively decides to put Tabi down, to let him rest and spare him further suffering. He does it because he’s exercising his powers as a human to bypass fate and end things on his own terms. He’s mindful he and Mayura and Masumi can’t always be together (even thought Mayura doesn’t want to think like that), so in the final twist of the episode he contemplates joining Masumi in the “in-between”, so that they can stay together. Which sounds an awful lot like suicide, something Mayura won’t abide.

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Rating:7 (Very Good)