So-Ra-No-Wo-To – 02
There was a proper OP sequence this week, and it emphasized the kind of images we saw connected to the legend from last week’s episode. It was unique enough that I uploaded it.
As Kanata gets used to her new environment, she meets her fellow soldiers, including their commander Felicia Heidemann, tank pilot and mechanic Kannagi Noel, and gunner Suminoya Kureha. Kureha is the one tasked with showing Kanata around, and she’s not too happy about it, but she uses the chance to boss Kanata around a little. Along the way, Kureha explains that there’s just five of them, and she outlines their arsenal, which features their under-repair tank, and how they are tasked with maintaining the border of their region. Kureha thinks that this is an important location and takes her duties very seriously, and while she acknowledges how their group can be lax, she’s very defensive about what they do.
Later, the girls learn that Noel saw a ghost, and Kanata confirms that she saw something too earlier. She and Kureha thus get sent to investigate, and Kureha reveals that this particular old building has been this way since before they started using the location as a fort. They make their way into what resembles an old classroom, and Kanata finds a book of contemporary writings, but it’s in a language she can’t read. Kanata isn’t too scared to be in a place like this during a storm, but when a large pack of rats charge their way, both girls run away. Their exploration of the place leads Kanata to guess that this used to be a school, and she even finds a music room with a broken piano. Kanata thinks that this is all great, but Kureha isn’t so proud, and their conversation is interrupted by the arrival of an owl. After Kanata falls, a scared Kureha shoots at it and misses, but the bird gets knocked unconscious anyway. The girls capture the owl, and when they bring it back to the rest of the group, Felicia decides to keep it. The next morning, Kanata finds that her seat at the dining table, which had been a stool, is now a proper chair thanks to Kureha.
This episode served as an introduction to the other girls and their environment, however it was clearly Kureha who got the bulk of the screentime and bonded with Kanata the most. She fit the archetype of the feisty younger character, which I’m not a huge fan of, but what was surprising was that Kanata turned out to be a much more level-headed and less ditzy/clumsy character than I thought she’d be, and that’s a plus to me. Despite all that though, I found myself liking Noel’s character the most out of the five. She’s like Yuki from Suzumiya Haruhi except cuter and with more emotions, plus she works with a tank all the time.
Aside from the characters, what I found most interesting about the episode was the history and environment that it’s building up. It was nice of them to show the geography (featuring the seemingly notable No Man’s Land), and they’re hinting that something happened that caused Japanese to become a lost language, with French taking over as the dominant written language, and for the school to be later turned into a fort. They also confirmed that the tank will probably be the spider mentioned in the legend since it’s a walker of some sort. I’m hoping all of this is leading up to some revelation of some previous conflict that may or may not be connected to the demon of the legend. In any case, this is a story that has shown a lot of promise, and it plus the production quality is more than enough to make me want to keep tuning in for more.