I’m going to level with you folks; this show isn’t very good. As much as I’m trying my best to give it a fair shake the anime seems determined to undermine any goodwill it manages to build, this episode in particular managed to throw that small level of positive feeling right out the window. With that said I’m committed to blogging this thing and I’ve finished far worse stuff out of sheer obstinacy before. So let’s talk about the episode.
The good news is the show finally moved past the recurring story black hole of the first few episodes “Namino refuses to get along with the newest team member” shifting instead to “Namino refuses to get along with the newest team member”. Oh. So despite not really resolving Namino’s enmity for Haru in any meaningful way the show has instead had her turn on new recruit Ruby (on the extremely flimsy grounds that Ruby *gasp* doesn’t like raw fish). So things are kind of just going in circles, which isn’t great.
The end result of this is that Namino continues to undermine the entire series, even in an episode she’s not even in that much. Which in turn makes the whole thing feel less plausible, for all the show continues to state that she’s highly skilled and needs to be placated it’s done nothing to really establish that, instead all she’s really done is make an impulsive bet and refuse to cooperate with anything the rest of the group try to do. She’s uncompromising to the point where she shouldn’t be on the team at all. Skilled or not if someone’s actively undermining the group in a team based activity they’re a liability. Due to the lack of any actual space fishing going on she hasn’t had a chance to be portrayed as anything beyond that liability, which makes the show’s consistent focus on convincing her to play nice feel increasingly like a waste. Presumably she’ll eventually have a change of heart but for now she continues to demand way too much of the series attention.
This extended temper tantrum was also the instigator for the 2nd half of the episode (although she didn’t even show up because she was busy sulking). The obligatory beach episode. In the vein of all the worst obligatory anime beach episodes this was mainly an excuse to leer at the girls in swimsuits. Mandatory issue school swimsuits no less (someone on the staff clearly has a thing for those huh). So there’s a good 5 minutes in the middle of the episode which are mostly just a series of crotch and butt shots, before eventually the other half of the cast show up to rescue things and teach Ruby how to not be a fish hating heathen. Naturally removing the cause of their fight does nothing to bring Namino round of course so that’s going to keep being a thing into the next episode.
Egregious displays of thirst aside this episode was mostly just the series running in circles again, where last week I’d sort of hoped the introduction of Ruby might shake things up a little the show seems content to just stay in the rut it’s been in since episode 2 instead of going anywhere. Maybe it’ll improve in the future but for now it’s going nowhere.