August 18th, 2011
Don’t worry, they get better.
On the down side, this episode began with a lot of the same nonsensical time-filling stuff that have plagued half the show. Before we get to a woman assassinating Kanba’s women or Ringo’s creepy dreams/quasi-flashback about imagining a moray eel killing her stuffed animal parents, we’re going to watch Shoma complain about carrying boxes and then a little silliness about her running a fever and delusionally trying to shove her tongue down his throat. It’s a little hard to take anything about their quest to find the Penguindrum/save Himari seriously when they’re distracted by every shiny and non-shiny object that crosses their path. I guess there wasn’t as much penguin slapstick as usual, so that’s an improvement at least.
And then it was time for flashbacks about Momoka, Ringo’s dead sister and how destiny apparently screwed her too. You know how I absolutely adore flashbacks, infodumps, and ill-defined magical drama devices. There’s probably some deep-seated Japanese cultural need that forces them to cut away from the main story to have a character list out their motivations, often making half of it up on the spot. Still though, while I dislike the storytelling devices, at least the content was a lot better than most of the last month of episodes, even if the head detonating was purely symbolic (boo). The protagonists seem unfortunately content to mostly sit around like halfwits, but the antagonist is at least starting to get directly involved and Ringo’s obsession with Momoka is finally just about back to where it was four episodes ago after a month-long divergence into comic relief. Congrats.