Bitchin’ Space Pirates 10 – The Rising Tsuntsun
I’m not one to HNNNNNNNNNNGH, but if I were, this would probably be the catalyst.
I like it a lot when shows are able to wrap a bit of fun in the context of the overall plot and have it work splendidly. Most people watching have probably been eager to see Chiaki as a captain-in-training, and with Marika needing some cover while going ghost ship hunting, the perfect opportunity to have Chiaki show her skills. It’s not surprising to see Chiaki be so charismatic and have so much fun with the role of the captain; she’s so blatantly tsuntsun that you instinctively know that she’s hiding a desire for fun under that shell. Watching the sheer joy Chiaki displays as she goes pirating is pretty awesome. The girl is born to be a pirate.
Her scene in front of the mirror later is more stock tsundere, but to be fair, I think it’s also poking a bit of fun at the usual tsundere antics. Is Chiaki even speaking to anyone when she’s like, “No way, I’m not enjoying this!”? Maybe I’ve just seen the wrong tsundere characters, but while they deal in dishonesty with themselves, it usually crops up in interactions with others. How often are characters tsundere with themselves? I kind of want to see a comic skit where a tsundere character is plopped in front of a mirror, and then the hilarity develops from there. In the right hands, something like that could be pretty damn funny.
You know you’d like an entire monologue of Chiaki switching rapidly from tsuntsun to deredere with herself.
But fun as this stuff is, it is of course not the major point of the episode. Chiaki is just a feint for Marika and the Bentenmaru to go ghost hunting in secret, which ends up being sort of dangerous because there’s something up with Serenity. In fact, it’s probably time for me to admit that my suspicion has been misplaced — I was right to be suspicious about the circumstances of this ghost ship hunting trip (as I believe most people have been), but I focused too much on the princess because she is the one who most immediately represents the kingdom. The only other people we’ve seen from this place have been those two servants. But, of course, it’s the shadowy folks in the background who are most suspicious. I have failed!
Even then, however, things are murky. There’s some interesting stuff revealed in this episode, the most shocking of which is that the kingdom delves in genetic engineering to keep its hold on itself insular, sort of like royal families going crazy with the incest to keep the blood line “pure.” Doesn’t necessarily mean they’re planning something bad, but it does mean the kingdom could easily replace the current princess if it so desired. Then again, I’m probably making a mistake just by thinking of the kingdom as a unified whole. There hasn’t been that much about the state of Serenity, but the fact that the princess is going out on her own to do this mission — along with the message “nothing has happened at the palace” — are clear red flags that Shit Is Happening. The danger in this journey could be a misunderstanding, or it could be someone trying to take advantage of an opportunity to grab power. Who knows?
Whatever the case, Marika makes some smart decisions to keep folks out of trouble. The princess has emotional ties to the situation that’s creating some bias, but Marika keeps a pretty cool head with danger all around and realizes the advantages they hold and how they can use them, since they’re sure as shit not going to survive in a huge firefight. Tactics!
Anyway, before I go, I want to apologize for not writing a post last week. I didn’t have much to say about the episode, though I did enjoy it, and I was wiped out from writing two massive posts back-to-back. Thus, I was hesitant to put energy into a post that likely would not have been good at all.