Thirteens: Giant Killing, Maid-Sama

Let’s see, the teams I was rooting for in the World Cup were USA, England, Mexico, and Japan.


I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t expecting ETU to win in this episode of Giant Killing, and it was a feel-good, and mostly realistic win to boot. But I’ll be sorry to see the Brazilian players leave the show, stereotypical though they were.

We start where we left off, well before we left off, since they insisted on showing us FIVE MINUTES of footage we’d already seen. Itagaki, incensed and calling out his teammates, decides to go lone wolf and increase the offensive pressure. He’s worried about his starting job and jealous of the Brazilian stars. On the other hand, his coach approves of the tactic, wanting Itagaki to grow as a player and mesh with those same Brazilians. It looks like a failure in communication, but that’s the other team. For now it means ETU is facing more and more threats. The Itagaki/Kuroda feud continues with its grunts and threats, and Dori is flying through the air a lot. Time is running out. I was sort of into the match, but since I already figured ETU would win, or maybe tie, I wasn’t too concerned. Not even this show would devote three whole episodes to a loss.

The second goal was an example of both feel-good and realistic. The counter-attack works again and Tsubaki is streaking toward the opponent’s goal. It becomes all dreamy as he enters some sort of trance state, one, surprisingly, predicted by Murakoshi episodes ago, though at the time it sounded not like a prediction, but admonishment. He can see and hear everything. This is his stage. He gets by a surprised Carlos (“He’s … smiling?” says Carlos), and I’m thinking, “This is too soon. Who does he think he is? Maradona?” Fortunately, the show doesn’t take that route. He’s double-teamed, but the ball goes right to Gino. 2-nil. Tweet-tweet!

The rest is denoument. Another friendly handshake between coaches with all the implied threats, and a lot of Tsubaki being praised. Man of the Match! “Go greet your fans!,” but the best bit concerned the Brazilians. Apart from the quote in the picture above being something I’ve wanted to tell every angry person on this show, they have a funny jersey-exchange routine, funny because Tsubaki doesn’t know what the hell they’re up to. Ah, a good episode. It’s always more fun when you’re winning.

Kaichou wa Maid-Sama 13 features the Three Idiots’ pasts. Well, two of them. A middle school kid named Aratake and his gang have arrived to fight Naoya, once their leader and famed for his toughness, little knowing that Naoya has been thoroughly trained by Misa and her mother into being a good, though idiotic, kid. So Aratake kidnaps Naoya’s girlfriend.

Yukimura must surely regret his cross-dressing now.

Naoya doesn’t have one. It’s Yukimura in drag again. Alas, another perfectly good character has been reduced to a trap. Anyway, Misa, Usui, Aoi (That’s right! Now this show has TWO traps!) and the idiots go off to rescue them. It doesn’t go the way either side expected.

Cunning disguises.

First off, Aratake isn’t so much nasty as a bit messed up. He used to idolize Naoya when he ran the gang. Why challenge him, then? I’m guessing he wants to prove who the strongest one is before the rest of the gang. The gang isn’t sure they want him leading them, and this feeds his desperation. Meanwhile the rescue party keeps getting delayed, as first Suzuna shows up, then Misaki’s boss, then Sakura, Suzuna, and the Ayuzawa cram school, and they all must be shooed away.

We get our fight but everyone else just watches, then it’s pretty much over. The combatants make up. Everyone’s happy except Yukimura. An all right episode, but Misa was reduced to a side character, and it suffered for that.

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