I’m definitely somewhat pleasantly surprised when these “watchers” from the council begin to fire simultaneously at Nadi, Elis, and uncle pedophile, who could be just your average hentai uncle from anywhere (I wanted to say the South[JOKING! JOKING!], but one of my fellow caster is from the South….) in the world.
However, I felt the quality of the gun fight animation wasn’t as good or exciting as what they had in Noir. Nope, not at all. Certainly the gun fight took place when Nadi and crew was in a speeding Winnebago, which means it’s hard to have a regular gun fight, but what we do get here is more character interactions and glimpses of people shooting at them.
Wow, an armored Winnebago-wanna-be…amazing…
It seems like the director is giving people a taste of bullet rain and fire fight. But what really delighted me was the interaction between Sailor Moon and Sailor Mercury…I mean the chairwoman of the council and the female researcher Jody Hayward. These two seiyuu (Mitsuishi Kotono and Hisakawa Aya) go way back to the early ’90s. I’m not nostalgia about ’90s much, but it’s nice to hear old partners playing off each other (OK, end of an old man’s babble).
In this episode, we finally got to see some of Nadi’s gun slinging skills. Instead of the usual cheesy: “If you got anything to say before you die, say it now,” she just fired at these watchers through the broken windshield, and definitely (gasp!!!) she managed to take out some of them! Nadi isn’t a god like shot like Madlax, or Kirika, or even Mirelle – when these women fired, men dropped. Nadi’s like a younger sister of Mirelle when Mirelle is at her clumsy moments, but Nadi is even closer to a classic shojo heroine, at least with her clumsiness. She trips and falls, she’s easily knocked out by the gay boys and she let the young sick bastard who’d like nothing but do Elis all day if possible (so what if only I guessed?) sneak by without a twitch, she gets entangled in a wall tapestry and can’t get out, while Elis saves the day with her witch powers. To me, she’s not a delightful character by herself. It’s her interaction with Elis that made it better. She’s not cool, not mysterious, and frankly not very smart from what I saw. It makes me wonder why they cast a character like her in this show.
Also, so far the show doesn’t impress me much. There’s a plot but most of the time, the story seems to unable to decide its pace. Most episodes are slow and easy, save the occasional villains that show up, which usually results in some minor humor (the nuns were funny…and they kicked some serious ass, and that to me, made Nadi looking like an idiot). It’s rather ironic that Nadi made a snide comment on uncle pedophile’s “amateur effort” modifying the Winebago-wanna-be, while throughout the series, she had enough amateur moments where she got into different silly situations and she almost never saved the day. Yes, she seems to be able to tell some things apart better than normal people, but as for her skills, I didn’t see anything expert like until this episode. This isn’t a shonen anime and she had no chance to train herself, so her skill increase seemed rather sudden.
As for everything else, save the new characters that appeared – the council leader and the two members that had their own scheme going, everything else remained the same. Jody let her hair down and dressed a lot nicer, but there’s not much of a fan service, unless you’re into what uncle pedophile is into…I mean, if you also think that a young girl’s still developing butt is cute…I mean…OK, ok enough of that. It was rather gross to see uncle pedophile’s reaction when he stared at Elis’ butt. At least this character was somewhat amusing, and he fired a huge ass machine gun.
This anime makes think about Quintin Tarrentino style of films a lot, or other films similar in style. We get a in depth look of people in their environment, good or bad, nothing glorified. Thieves, tricksters, pedophiles, awkward and amusing main characters with cartoonish, (well, I guess this is an anime so it’s perfectly all right) personalities, stereotype folks (drunken fat, greasy Mexican guy with cases of corona in the trunk), a “Lone Wolf and a Cub” with Western style outfits, and so on. Then we get the other conventional – anime conventional characters – a scheming femme fatale Jody who dresses prudish, and then changes into to a waitress uniform first, and then a hot OL Agent with her sexiness and elegance out (there was a decent humor about that), a ambitious researcher with a project, a secret organization with a council, a little fire witch with powers still not fully developed. I feel that only the young and sadistic bishonen was not entirely conventional. One thing that isn’t there, however, is the Quintin style dialogue that he did so well in his older films.
Nadi is not quite conventional, but I see her and I think a less amusing, sillier, dumber and less street-wise version of Faye Valentine (Megumi’s voice wasn’t perfectly casted, many people would say, but her wits and her seiyuu skills were dead on. Faye was Faye because Megumi played her), not too mention Faye has a nice body and Nadi looks like a washboard in comparison.
Elis? Well, Elis is Elis. She’s no Rei Ayanami, no Mishima Reika, no Yuki in Haruhi no Yuutsu; she’s simply perkier. She makes me grin but she does nothing that makes me laugh. I like Shimitsu Ai as Elis because she plays the character well, other than that, Elis doesn’t impress me at all.
Looking forward to see Nadi display her “true” skills – if she has any.
68% recommended for your daily anime diet.
Post Note: upon rewatching this eps and trying to find screen caps, this episode just seemed a lot smarter and more interesting in sporadic viewings. 73% recommended for you daily anime diet.
Post Note no. 2: There was a clue which I missed because I was drinking – these watchers and the members of this organization (the witches) can be highly active at night without any rule constraints. Hmm…