STRIKE WITCHES 2 – 07
「モゾモゾするの」 (Mozomozo Suru no)
“It’s Squirming About”
Whether intentional or not, there’s a lot of mirroring between this sequel and the first season. It’s almost like a homage or sorts given the two years in between, with this episode taking a page right out of the seventh episode then. It started similarly with all the girls in bed and showing us their sleep attire (or lack thereof), had a bath scene somewhere around the middle, and the witches taking off their pants in the end. Back then, it was underwear thievery on Erica’s part when she couldn’t find her own, whereas here it’s a bug-sized Neuroi sapping electrical power from the base and “infiltrating” the girls from behind — literally. While there was a fair bit of fan-service from the open bath scenes and the girls getting dressed afterward, the kind that I got a lot more enjoyment from was the girls’ hesitation towards exposing themselves to get the bug out. Being naked in front of the others wasn’t the problem here. Instead, it was the act of stripping down while everyone was watching that was the source of embarrassment, and one I got a good laugh out of from the likes of Lynne and Yoshika.
The fact that those two aren’t very good at hiding their embarrassment led to some fairly hysterical screaming. In contrast to them, there were Eila and Perrine trying to put up the “good fight”, which was just as funny. I just love the ones who try to maintain a tough exterior and end up looking really uncool when they fail to do so. However, if the sight of them trying to prevent the other witches from taking off their pants didn’t tickle your fancy, then there were also the much bolder Karlsland girls, Gertrud and Erica, who willing took off their pants as a countermeasure. With those two, it’s either strictly military business or simply having no shame, either of which is a stark contrast to the other girls who shy away with modesty. Of course, all that reiterated to me is that these German girls know how to strut their stuff, which includes Minna getting her 200th recorded kill to earn her a medal that she didn’t really care to get. Not many military personnel can tout they killed an alien with their butt cheeks, but Minna sure can! It looks like someone’s been working out their buttocks a fair bit.
Clearly this was supposed to be a fan-service episode, but I was more amused than anything else by the havoc caused by such a small Neuroi. This includes the Gertrud referring to the divider in her room as the Siegfried Line, Erica giving Gertrud a huge slap on her bare butt to try and kill the bug, Shirley acting like a hot-shot with her bug radar but having absolutely no idea why it’s attracted to their pants (lol), and finally Eila’s dowsing rods leading her to Sanya’s pants and a huge misunderstanding. Let’s not forget Lucchini and Shirley giving Perrine a blast of hose water up the ass after she just slipped down her stockings and pants, which I imagined was much more painful than her scream let off. All in all, it was fun(ny) times amidst the air of fan-service and right along what I’d expect to see from this series. It was even pretty cute at times.
On a more serious note, it sure seemed awfully overpowered with the way the Neuroi kept feeding power to the approaching part of it that was growing in size. It’s not the first time we’ve seen a Neuroi with multiple bodies and the core located within one of them, but bringing a swarm of these core-less ones with their true bodies hidden elsewhere seems like a sure-fire way to overwhelm the witches. For whatever reason, the Neuroi seem to like to come one at a time though, making that tactical advantage rather moot. The rational side of me couldn’t help but think of that, knowing very well that it’s probably not worth reading into the plot holes of what the Neuroi could be doing but aren’t. After all, this was an otherwise lighthearted and humorous episode where analyzing too much just takes the fun out of it.
* Shirley was humming the first season’s ending theme, “Bookmark A Head”, in this episode.