More sevens: Star Driver, Zakuro

In Star Driver 7 Sugata wakes up, but what has he become?

The first half is all about the aftermath of Sugata’s apprivoising and subsequent coma, the type that no one has woken up from. Wako is devastated because he did it to save her. Takuto begins to question his own purpose on the island. One of the Drama Club girls talks with him, says that his arrival made the Wako/Sugata duo into a trio. While Takuto isn’t so sure, he is reminded that he came here for a reason and has a goal. This all done, by the way, to elegant string music, starting with a long tension-filled violin section playing a single note, and slowly building up. The soundtrack to this show has a grandness that I really like.

Glittering Crux is also worried about Sugata, but for other reasons. They decide to make sure he’s unconscious or dead, and Ivrogne is told to finish the job she botched last episode, and before you know it it’s Zero Time! My favorite time of the day, when you see giant mecha battle on LSD. The big complication is that Sugata, still unconscious, is also there, floating in his own bubble. The battle is another routine one, this week’s gimmick being that Ivrogne can “swim” under the floor. It’s complicated a bit when Sugata’s bubble breaks and Takuto has to catch him. Takuto wins (we don’t see Ivrogne stumble out of the “coffin,” something I’ve always enjoyed), everyone heads back.

Now, during the fight Sugata woke up, good news, except it was in Zero Time. In real life he’s awake but disoriented. Now we have the Fish Girl’s story to deal with. In this latest installment, Sam tells the king that he doesn’t want the kingdom, only the galactic ship, and the king says okay, but to power it he has to spill the blood of the girl he loves. I had always figured Takuto to be “Sam,” but all of a sudden we get Glittering Crux members asking woozy Sugata to lead them. What’s more, Scarlet Kiss kisses him. So is Scarlet Kiss now the girl he loves, who’s blood must be spilled, instead of Wako? Maybe Glittering Crux, in its desire to take control of Sugata, has made a tactical error. Or I could be talking out of my hat.

Another episode of Otome Youkai Zakuro with no sign of the overriding story. Even in last week’s decompression episode we had portents and memories. This week they don’t even hint at it. Instead, a girl arrives at Spirits Affairs, hugs Kei and begs him to come home for a visit. Kei says yes, invites Zakuro along as an “assistant,” and, oh, Zakuro, would you hide your ears, please?

You can imagine that Zakuro is in a foul mood for much of the episode. Meanwhile we all wonder just why Kei was asked home, and why he brought Zakuro along. A family crisis? A spirit to deal with? While we wait we get some more evidence of bad spirit/human relations, this time exhibited by Kei’s tool of a father.

So on top of everything else, Zakuro has to listen to that sort of stuff. So I figure that somewhere along the line Zakuro’s ears will be revealed, leading to to a father/son confrontation. But no, instead we get nervous scenes between Tae, the servant in love with Kei, and Zakuro, who hasn’t figured out her own feelings. Oh, and many years ago Kei saw a spirit, his cat Itsue disappeared, and he’s been afraid of spirits since. Zakuro takes care of that little problem.

Itsue turned into a cat demon and has been around the entire time. Kei is grateful. Everyone’s happy. And the reason for the visit? The family just wanted to see him, and Kei wanted Zakuro as a buffer between him and his father. That’s it. Apart from learning a little about Kei’s background, it’s hardly a story at all. Oh, for what it’s worth, Kei’s mother knows Zakuro’s a spirit, and little Kumiko can see Itsue. Can we get to a story arc, please?

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2 thoughts on “More sevens: Star Driver, Zakuro

  1. I enjoyed some of the little moments in this week’s episode of Zakuro, and it did give Kei a little bit of character development. I’m guessing Kei’s family may be important later, but this is probably going to feel like a wasted episode if Zakuro is only a 12 or 13 episode series.

  2. ANN says they know of 13 episode titles, but that’s not the same as there being 13 episodes. But if that’s actually the length, you’re right; they’re wasting too much time on these sideshows. It’s especially annoying because they haven’t given us much more than clues. We still really don’t know what’s going on.

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