The Tower of Druaga ~the Aegis of Uruk~ – 05
As they progress through the Tower, Jil and company come across a sign that gives them a choice of taking a shortcut or a detour. They choose the shortcut, but along the way, they find a dejected and oddly dressed group heading the opposite direction. Shortly thereafter, Jil steps on a marble-like object that temporarily transforms the entire group into 8-bit form. When they change back, Melt examines the object that Jil stepped on and realizes that it releases magic upon impact. He suspects there are several types of these along this path, and as if to support that statement, the group then observes a large army being turned into giant mice. Neeba’s group meanwhile has also fallen victim to the magical effects of one of these balls that Neeba identifies as Ziusudra’s Trap. He goes on to explain to his companions that Ziusudra was an insane mage who used this place for experiments, and those inventions are still active now.
The next trap that Jil’s group activates is one that reverses everyone’s genders. Though the girls have a hard time adjusting to being boys, Melt likes what he sees and wants some alone time, though Coopa refuses to let him. Similarly, Jil is entranced by his new breasts and is very tempted to touch them, but he worries about what the girls will think of him if he does so. His moment of clarity comes when he remembers how his father wanted him to be a great warrior, and the problem solves itself after Melt steps on the trap that reverses this effect. The group then observes the same army from earlier engaging in battle with a swarm of Roper monsters, except that the entire battles occurs in 8-bit thanks to another magical effect. As Jil and company move on, they have to endure several more traps including one that puts animal costumes on them, one that makes them huge in size, one that turns them into slimes, and one that turns them all into Coopa.
They do eventually reach the exit, however they find that it is guarded by a device that demands an interesting performance from them. Melt, Coopa, Ahmey, and Kaaya all try their hand at this, but they all repeatedly fail and are repeatedly dumped into a pit of mud. Under pressure from his companions to do something to try to impress the gate guardian, Jil remembers how his father had once taught him a special dance that had been passed down for generations in their family. This turns out to be the legendary Roper dance, but it still doesn’t impress the gate guardian because he had already seen the same thing a little earlier. This leaves Jil and company no choice but to turn back and take the detour after all, and Jil can’t help but wonder who performed the Roper dance first. As it turns out, the person was none other than Neeba who had learned the dance when he saw his father teaching it to Jil all those years ago.
So let’s see…. Gender-bending + Jil conflicted over his breasts + Random transformations (including the all-Coopa one) + Wakamoto Norio = a return to Druaga hilarity. It wasn’t quite as funny as the first episode, but it was definitely more fun to watch than some of the recent weeks. Now I realize that they can’t do this for every episode because there has to have a plot and all – and this episode did manage to shed some more light onto Jil and Neeba’s past relationship, making me wonder if Jil was the favorite child and Neeba was the neglected one – but I just really enjoy watching this style a lot more. I wonder if they’re going to keep doing this every few episodes – I’d certainly like it if they did. Next week looks to be a Coopa focused episode though, so I assume it’ll be a return to the normal storyline.