I wonder if Mikagura Gakuen Kumikyoku is going to have a major story arc after all. True, in episode 8 they start setting up a rivalry between Seisa and Otone, and there’s some darkness lurking elsewhere as well, but it all seems rather minor and disposable, like the rookie challenge battle arc which was over before we expected. Not that the show really needs something big, or dark. This time around is rather a sweet story where Eruna and Otone bond a little when they’re paired up for the rookie treasure hunt. It’s better than some because it’s as silly as the rest of the series so far. Otone is rough on the outside but it’s such an obvious act that everyone just wants to give her a hug, while Eruna is her normal, weird self. Once again, most of the jokes work because of the latter, and they add some WTF near the end, with that robot cat transforming. Where did THAT come from?
Houkago no Pleiades 8 gives us a look at Nanako, the one with the cute hat who interprets for the alien overlord. Her tale isn’t terribly tragic. Her mom and younger brother went off to travel the world several times for reasons that I suppose don’t matter, and they haven’t been back for years, a broken promise that makes her believe that people can’t be trusted and that it’s best to be alone. Rather like Otone, except that Nanako seems to bear the sadness better. Witch hat and robe aside, she’s maybe the most sensible character of the bunch. Plus, her missing mom and brother send her a lot of mail and little souvenirs, and her father clearly loves her, so she’s not in a vacuum.
So it’s all mundane, except this is Houkago no Pleiades, so they balance her sadness with its trademark loopiness. She sets off alone to recover a fragment on the edges of the solar system. She travels at 99.999% of the speed of light! Half a day for her, three months for her friends on Earth, but she will call them over when the time comes. She spends the time thinking how it’s best when she’s alone, then starts to think about her friends, gets a little bitter, until she gets there and finds an unknown gas giant! What’s more, the fragment’s passing near it forces its gravity to collapse, or something, and now we’re going to have a second star in the solar system! Oh, and she calls her friends, Horned Cape shows up, they catch the fragment, they return home instantly (because someone really wanted to, we’re told), and it’s Nanako’s birthday, too! AND they invent a new word (po-warm) for no good reason. For piling random points onto the plot and its already-cosmic weirdness, this show has no equal, at least this season.