Asobi ni Ikuyo! – 2

Well, that was a great big bowl of WTF. Rather enjoyable, but if anything I feel I know less about what’s going on than I did last week.

Asobi ni Ikuyo! certainly doesn’t hold back when it comes to reveals. There are no subtle hints or foreshadowing here – stuff pretty much just happens and we need to catch up. Apparently every person in Kio’s circle except Kio himself is secretly working for somebody – be it the Japanese military, American military, CIA or some quasi-paramilitary group with a fetish for stylish E.T.’s. And then there’s Futaba, who also appears to be either an alien or some sort of cyborg/robotic super-alien. And that’s not even talking about Eris and her Lala-esque bag of tricks. Kio seems to have a target on his back when it comes to weirdness.

There are several things redeeming this above simple confusing nonsense. First, both Kio and Eris are more than they seem. He’s quite level-headed and calm, and she much smarter than the typical airhead catgirl/alien. There’s also some fairly clever political satire here, dealing with the alien freaks and the US military presence in Okinawa. And the harem aspect may be of above-average potential, based on the humor mined from it in episode 2.

Stylistically this is a bit of a muddle, too. This ep was much lighter in tone than the first one – leaning more towards the ToLoveRu side of the genome than the Darker than Black feel of episode 1. Where this is going I really have no idea – but the whole mess is such a narrative train wreck that I can’t look away. Maybe we can really find something original in all these highly derivative elements – it should be interesting to find out.

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