For my trip through episode twos I should start with Mayoiga, but I could bear the characters even less than I could in episode one. A pity, because it looked like an interesting mystery. So we start with Gakusen Toshi Asterisk 2 2.
It’s all setup and mostly dull talk. We meet the weird maid-girl from last week, learn her name is Flora, was at the orphanage, and has a voice that rivals Tomoko Kaneda’s. In fact, I thought it WAS Kaneda until I looked it up. Anyway, after some uninteresting background is brought up and we have confirmation that that Ayato’s harem has gained a girl, he arranges to meet that asshole who’s in control of the Urzaiz sisters and then his roommate Yabuki comes back, in two unnecessary scenes that are only there to reintroduce the characters. But for the first time, Ayato gains a little information about her sister, sadly, it’s the same info we learned back in season one episode one, except she might not be dead. But at least this dormant bit of story is revived.
Episode 3 gives us the old anime chestnut: “You shouldn’t go into this alone,” demonstrated by a flashback where Ayato can’t beat his older sister, so he enlists cute little Saya and her guns, to take on his sister … and they lose anyway. Jump to now, and he’s brooding over her disappearance until Julis and Saya make him recall that old advice, though it didn’t work before. Then to my surprise we have their next battle. I thought they’d hold off another episode or two. Anyway, they’re getting their butt kicked when Julis brings up that similar mantra: “Who will protect you,” and somehow it “awakens” Ayato, though we don’t know what it means because the show spend so much time on flashbacks and Ayato’s brooding.
Macross Delta 2 gives us the plot stuff we expect and demand.
But just to remind us, it starts right where it left off, same ska music and Hayate and Freyja tumbling out of the sky, only to be rescued in spectacular fashion, before starting the process of getting Hayate on the squad and Freyja into Walkure. The former isn’t terribly interesting. Arad, who’s already made his decision, summons him, but Hayate wanders off so they have to track him down and give us more wind metaphors.
Likewise, the Walkure girls already have their eye on Freyja, and while she’s too nervous to do a good job at the auditions, they set up a crisis for her to sing her way out of, and there are more wind metaphors. Pass! I wonder about Hayate’s suicidal toss off the deck, coinciding with Freyja’s singing. Coincidence? Oh, and the supposed bad guys mutter a lot about their goal, though the show isn’t telling us what it is yet.
Figured as much. Not a coincidence. Freyja and Hayate reach their most inspired moments when they’re responding to each other. We learn this after a bunch of scenes where those two triangle points get settled in and mess up a lot. We mainly watch Hayate, ditching classes and trying to catch that mercat (a nice touch at the end when one of Walkure names his flight move … so an Immelmann does a mercat turn?), and nearly dying in the duel with Mirage until he connects with Freyja’s singing. We see less of Freyja’s struggles, just her trying to keep up in dance rehearsals and not singing to her potential while the other Walkure shake their heads. Still, they seem to have a better idea of what’s going on than Arad and the pilots do, letting her see Hayate’s dogfight to get her riled up.