It’s official: I pretty much like everyone better as a potential romantic partner for Mahiro than Nyaruko – including a guy, his mother and now a Shantak.
Nothing too fancy going on with Haiyore! this week, but it’s an agreeably lighthearted romp compared to most of this season. With Nyaruko away on undisclosed business everyone is scrambling madly to try and figure out what Shanta-kun is desperately trying to tell them (Hastur always seems to default to getting her off, for some reason) until Kuuko reaches under her blouse and pulls out a magical context lens which acts like that app that translates your dog’s speech (except it actually works). The verdict? Shanta just wants to be of use to Mahiro – so Kuuko reaches into the bag of tricks again for magical candy that turns Shanta-kun into a loli.
Nothing at all unpredictable happens here. Shanta vamps excessively for the camera and gets in trouble, Nyaruko gets jealous. But we do get some pretty funny bits and a completely extraneous Tenchi Muyo reference (at least the OreGairu one was in context). Perhaps the most notable thing that happens comes after the credits, when we learn that Kuune has escaped from her inter-dimensional prison. That is bad news on pretty much all fronts considering as she’s strongly in the running as worst anime character of the season, except that it might possibly mean more Mahiro-Kuuko shipping – which was, in fact, the best part of the season so far.
Mushibugyou – 09
The plot continues to thicken on Mushibugyou. It’s widening in scope as developments are happening in several places, and also on the personal side, where Junbei continues to break down the Magistrate’s icy exterior and Genjurou gets some very disquieting news about Mugai.
I find the role of the Insect Hunters the most intriguing part of the larger conspiracy plot, right down to the meaning of their name. What’s their ultimate goal? Why did Mugai lead them, and then turn his coat? All we know for sure is that they want the Magistrate dead, and Kotori says “Edo would be flattened in a day” if that happened. To that end pretty much every official sword in Edo is loaded onto a giant ship bound for Hachijou Island to save her from the Insect Hunters – though the Samurai House Guard return to Edo to defend it from a giant insect attack.
I quite like the interaction between Junbei and the Magistrate, and Kenn and Han Megumi are doing an excellent job with their scenes together. Dense as he is Junbei still hasn’t figured out the truth, and she eventually gives up and plays along – revealing a sort of whimsy in her character. She also tries to spare him from the fight when the Insect Hunters do arrive, though he stubbornly refuses to be spared – and in the process reveals some decidedly not human abilities that call the nature of her own existence ever-more into question.
Among the Insect Hunters we meet are suicidally depressed Manako (Tsuda Kenjirou) and oppai-envious Mashiro (Kitamura Eri) as well as weapons expert Kuroganemaru (Naitou Ryo – this is turning into quite the Space Brothers reunion) though none of them seem to be the one Genjurou is seeking – the one who killed his mother. The episode teases that it might be Mugai, but for now I’m more inclined to believe it’s the current leader. That will likely be revealed next week, it seems.