Assault Lily Bouquet 7 is delayed because of COVID, but I haven’t watched episode 6 yet …
Quite a good episode, too. It starts with comedy and infodumps about a tactic called “Neunwelt,” where every team member touches the glowing thing before sending it to the Huge to be destroyed. Sounds like too much for the newly-named “Hitotsuyanagi Squad” and Riri, their reluctant leader, so another team takes on a Huge to show them how it’s done … but it doesn’t work. Shock!, but it’s early in the episode so I was expecting it. So team, er, Hitotsuyanagi (I’m glad I wrote that down) have to hold the thing off until backups arrive. And we discover the probable reason the Huge withstood the attack. It has a Charm of its own, namely, Dainsleif, Yuyu’s old blade, the one she stabbed Misuzu with. If you’re expecting a painful flashback bit, you get it in spades.
The episode goes from being interesting to excellent. It helps that part of the flashback has Misuzu explaining the difference between Huge and Lilys: the latter does not allow the magic to consume them. But Yuyu’s “lunatic dancer” special skill forces her to do just that, and it killed Misuzu and almost Riri, except she’s too quick and knows what’s going on. So what’s the difference between Yuyu and a Huge? It’s a question that the show doesn’t answer, but I hope it returns to it.
Anyway, it takes Riri’s patience and love for Yuyu to snap the poor girl out of her funk, and then we get a good battle where the goal is now to take that Charm back from the Huge. Good stuff coming from every angle. After a few episodes of nothing it was good to see the action scenes again, and the unanswered questions about Misuzu.
Well, here comes episode 7, and it’s quite different. Basically a ship with pod-things in the hold, and apparently no one else on board. Things blow up and we switch to the corpse of a Huge, and a few of those pods lying about. Of course, Riri innocently gets too close, sets off some kind of reaction, and we suddenly have a girl! No memories, and apparently a Lily. Riri half volunteers and is volunteered to be a surrogate sister for her, since they’re already close, maybe an imprinting thing for the girl, later named Yuri, and this is a shocking name for the rest of the girls, but frankly I can’t remember the reasons why. Anyway, it’s mostly cute scenes of therapy, and a bit of jealousy out of Yuyu. It almost makes you forget that she was a pod, and there’s pressure on the school from outsiders to turn her over to … whoever. So expect in an episode or two something rather nasty, either from Huge or from whatever the mysterious human forces surrounding them.
The trouble with shows like Majo no Tabitabi is that it’s clear from the start that there’s going to be a moral in it somewhere. In episode 6 we learn right off that it’s a country where people are incapable of lying. We just wait to see what the ramifications of that are, and maybe it will get fixed (Elaina’s job is not to solve the world’s problems). Also, in many cases it demands that the person responsible for the bad thing is too dense to see the simple truth that they made a mistake. That said, the episode did what it could to make it entertaining. I liked Elaina’s dull but necessary lecture to the dense king (another problem with these shows are the lectures) because Saya was busy fighting in the background, fire, water, and wind flying past Elaina. And the fact that even the king thinks the magic sword looks really stupid and can’t lie about it. Finally, while no one would like to live in a town like that, I think Elaina, who usually speaks her mind, would be a perfect fit for it.
Speaking or morals, or cheap fairy tales, episode 7 is no better, but it goes pleasantly off the rail so it’s all okay. In the first half there’s a country that builds a wall to keep the other side out. You can see where this is going, you think, but it takes an unexpected twist in that a visiting witch recommends to both sides that they allow travelers to etch greetings on the wall, both sides, and later Saya makes an appearance and in either an astute bit of reasoning or just because she’s obsessed, suggests they let the villagers, not the travelers, etch whatever they want. I guess the moral is that walls like that are stupid, or that villages are for villagers, not only travelers, or something, I’m not sure. Then we get two more warring villages who are trying to sell wine. Again the big question is “why are they fighting?” and it gets solved, but it also involves sexy grape-stomping girls and outright fetishism. Wouldn’t you want to drink wine that had its grapes lovingly stomped on by a beautiful woman? Me neither, actually. Feels a bit unclean. Anyway, it’s another dull moralistic folk tale that gets a happy ending in an odd way. I don’t mind the lame setups if the story gets weird. Oh, and Elaina gets drunk for the first time. I’m a little surprised that they didn’t include a hangover scene.
Episode 8 keeps with the fetishism, as Elaina visits a city where dolls are everywhere. Everyone’s clutching one as they talk about the latest deeds of “The Ripper,” which isn’t as bad as you might think, but still bad. So all the while I’m thinking there’s a spell making everyone attached to dolls so much, but it turns out that’s just how they are. Elaina and a witch named Sheila get to the bottom of the Ripper matter as they attend a not-so-secret auction, and it doesn’t really add up to much. However, I enjoyed Elaina’s anger when she finds out what’s been done to her, though I will say that while I like her flowing locks, she’s pretty cute in a bob, too.
As for 100-Man 7, at one point Kahvel says that Yuusuke reminds her of herself, that he’s searching for what he can do in the world. But we also have moments of Yuusuke, while slowly climbing out of that pit, thinking about his past, and frankly the two don’t match up. In fact, I’m not sure what Yuusuke’s monologues are supposed to mean, except that every life is important. Well, there is the concept of rating–Kahvel ranking just average in her knight training (come to think of it, the Shindou flashback of her failing to make the top eight in a tennis tournament might also apply), but again I’m not sure what Yuusuke’s inner concept of ranking is supposed to mean here. Anyway, Yuusuke gets out of the pit and rejoins the group, and when he learns that Kahvel died, rushes to bring her back to life, which is consistent, I think. Hakosaki seemed to approve. And in a pleasant surprise, Shindou defeats the monster all by herself, though it helped that she leveled up and is no longer a weak wizard but a strong warrior, which also mean something. In fact, the last few episodes are sort of the characters leveling up as human beings as well as characters in a game.
And in episode 8 one of them levels down. First, there’s an elaborate plan to rescue the pilgrims and get the asshole leader to report that they’re all dead, so he’ll report that to the authorities and they will not consider it a provocation of war. To do so they have Yuka lure a couple of them off, getting her killed, while Yuusuke does a switcheroo on the remaining soldiers and the pilgrims. It’s convoluted, but it works. However, Yuka isn’t terribly happy about Yuusuke killing someone, even a NPC, and there’s a conversation about whether this game world is real or not (bringing up the question of Kahvel’s kiss on the sleeping Yuusuke–was that a real “first kiss” or doesn’t it count?). During most of this I was both delighting in Yuusuke’s new diabolical way of thinking, but worried too. After his “all lives matter” monologues last episode, he seems to be regressing. He claims it’s because the victims were not friends, and brings up the soldier killed that they all liked, but it’s still morally ambiguous, and we also get the symbolic dropping of stats for killing someone as well as questions about his choices. So now the question is not only how to deliver the “good” to Radodorba, but whether Yuusuke and the others can progress as people.