BNA 2 lets us look a little more at the city where Michiru finds herself, and it’s not pretty. On the surface it’s like any other city, long lines at the city office, etc, but Michiru keeps landing in the thick of the seedy underside, where, tracking down her wallet, she winds up teaching some kids, only to discover that they’re to be sold off to humans for whatever reason, and she’s included. All through the episode people on both sides of the law talk about might makes right and the strong prey on the week. Now, we could imagine a realistic show with these same themes, where a nice young girl winds up in trouble and working for yazuka or something worse. Also, women are more likely to be made victims. This show differs so far in that Michiru claims she’s human and transformed, what’s more, all the beastmen can change from human to beast, but she can’t. These, along with the conflicted feelings Michiru has for beastmen, humans, and thus herself, not to mention some outsize abilities she displays, makes this series different.
Appare-Ranman! 2 does the expected in bringing in new characters with their own backstory, mainly Jing Xialin, a girl enamored of cars and racing who is not allowed to drive because she’s a girl, nyah! Her first meeting with Appare and Kosame is a tad unfortunate for the car she was driving, but I was confident that Appare would nonchalantly fix it, which happened, though the payoff came a bit later than I was expecting. Then there’s the Native-American kid looking for a man with a tattoo on his neck, and gets roughed up every time we see him. We know he’ll join the team soon enough. Meanwhile Appare wanders around being clueless about the people around him, and the stereotypes keep appearing. I wonder if the creators hope these things (like the ridiculous clothing both Jing and the boy wears) are taken to such extremes that we’ll laugh, just like Appare’s weird appearance and Kosame’s laughable samurai stereotype, but I don’t think it’s working for me.
Nami no Kiitekure 3 starts by partially deflecting that threat at the end of last episode, the guy with the flashbacks, who also opens this episode being equally creepy. Turns out he’s a downstairs neighbor whose door drunken Minare always collapses at, so he carries her down. So there’s that bit explained, but he’s still awfully creepy. But the show is done with him and his stripping-girl memories for the time being (I’m sure we’ll get back to that) and goes back to Minare, who’s destitute and despondent, so takes the job at MRS, and moves in with nice Mizuho. That all doesn’t sound very interesting, but Minare makes it so with good talk with both Mizuho and Mato, the latter in a discussion where he brings up that girl from the past, Sissel Komei, and so another mystery. What was she to Mato? I tried looking up that name to see if she was a real celebrity and discovered there’s a wiki to this show as well as a TVTropes page, neither of which I intend to look at until this thing is over. The mysteries are good and compelling, maybe because apart from those short scenes with that Ritsuko, they’re mostly ignored for now in favor of watching Minare’s life.
After the wildness of Toaru Kagaku no Railgun T 11, episode 12 slows down a bit. We only spend a couple minutes with Touma, Gunhha and the wildly-powered Misaka before switching to other things. Kuroko’s tracking of Kozaku continues but it’s mainly staying away from the liquid metal puppet for the time being while angling to get somewhat close to Kozaku, and then we get Kuroko’s line that she feels she’s missing something. It’s as if the show wants us to know in advance what’s going to happen even if we don’t know the details. The bulk of the time is spent with Shokuho’s stalking of Gensei, which we knew would end badly for her and does–Shokuho is working alone (a no-no in this series) and Gensei is too cagy for her. The only question is how many times can the two top each other’s traps. They almost had me at the end but of Gensei had one more trick up his sleeve, literally. So we have one defeat and two stalemates going on at the moment. I just wonder if next week Kuroko is going to get even more banged up than she is now.
It’s becoming clear now how Kakushigoto is going to work. The bulk of the episode will be the usual mix of situations and gags. Some of them work. This time I enjoyed the now long line of women who Kakushi has flirted with without meaning to. This time it’s a teen would-be idol girl, which he chats up because he’s working on such a character, then a cooking instructor and a flower shop girl, who hear Kakushi’s lament about how Hime needs a mother figure and makes a false assumption. Add that to the teacher … The stuff about going tech didn’t really pan out. The manga staff do their usual good jobs adding asides and punchlines, however. Then there will be 10% of the show where the older Hime discovers something about her father (where is he?) and the house, or maybe there are two houses, exactly alike. The episode teases this early on but nothing yet is made of it.