I confess, I kinda don’t get the panda thing myself.
Sea slugs gang-banging, pandas pooping, VEPPer spooning – in other words, it’s just another week on Binan Koukou. This wasn’t one of the more hilarious episodes of the season, but it certainly had its moments. It was also the first episode of the second season that felt as if it were making time a bit, recycling in order to get another episode in the books. And in that sense, I guess it’s fitting that this week’s famous seiyuu cameo was a repeat appearance by Matsuoka Yoshitsugu as Kumano Kuroshiro – Matsuoka popped up in Episode 8 of the first season, too.
Indeed, Kumano’s villain role was very much an afterthought this week – he got almost no backstory at all, just popped up serving tea to the Beppu twins at an opportune moment and quickly turned into a monster. Most of the back story in fact went to Ryuu and Io, who were feuding – which was apparently their default state when they joined the Earth Defense Club in the first place. It was only a timely splash of cold water from Yumoto that got them both into hot water and turned them into besties.
As for Kumano, this was a pretty good gag because to be honest, the Japanese are no different than the Americans in having a ridiculous obsession with pandas. Yeah, they’re kind of cute and their shit don’t stink (it’s true – look it up). But seriously, there are plenty of other cute animals out there, so what makes them so special? Is it the black and white? The random tumbling? The alliterative/repetitive naming convention? It’s not much of a deep philosophical question, I suppose, but this episode of Binan Koukou doesn’t leave too deep of an impression so I guess that’s as good a note as any to end on.