Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt – 04
「ダイエット・シンドローム」 (Daietto Shindorōmu)
“The Diet Syndrome”
Perhaps the one and only foreshadowing this show will ever create and deliver, Stocking finally finds herself getting fat, and no matter how hard she tries, it only results in gaining even more weight. But as it turns out, this is all the cause of a ghoul made of breasts, releasing yeast cells and selling them as toppings on cakes to make every other woman fat as well. A consequence of pure jealousy? Yeah. A mocking physical form of resistance to society’s pressure on feminine beauty? Definitely. A poke at Kuragehime? Probably not.
I laughed, I cried, and hurriedly told a friend to watch PSG episode 4 as soon as possible. This episode was just too funny. I think they tried to stick in some kind of message to people who are dieting, and I’m not so sure it’s a positive one. All in regulation is probably the thing to learn from this episode (wow, we’re learning from this show now?). The best thing about this half was Fat Stocking. Her mild expression had me laughing along with Panty, likely extending my life just a little longer. Oddly enough, I found Fat Stocking to be within the boundaries of those particular things that people find “fat and cute.” Like you know, how Totoro is cute, but fat. Hell, he’s so cute you don’t even think he’s fat. Anyway, the ghoul this time around was incredibly disgusting in concept. Think about it, she squirts mammary fluid… onto cakes as icing… and people eat it. In Stocking’s case, she practically vacuumed it all up at one point, accompanied with some rather nasty sound effects. Also for the first time, we get some “development” on their weapons, as when Stocking’s stockings are stretched, they apparently become limp. Oh, and the transformations continue to degrade in our minds since episode one.
「ハイスクール・ヌーディカル」 (Hai Sukūru Nūdikaru)
“High School Nudical”
Disregarding the fact that seeing High School Musical get parodied as a title made me cringe (the title was spot on too, with the lights on the text and everything), the latter half of the episode just wasn’t as funny as the first. I think it needs more Fat Stocking.
If anyone’s still blissfully unaware, Garterbelt is a gay pedophile, which is exactly the reason why he set up this “Lingerie Race”. This is a tidbit you might know already, but Garterbelt’s a playoff of the stereotypical “priests who like to touch boys” that appears every so often in the media. Anyway, the interesting twist this time around is that Panty and Stocking’s weapons have broken against the Ghoul. It’s never explained why, but Panty goes around finding a substitute gun by stealing everyone’s underwear. While Panty’s own gun doesn’t really represent the size of her privates (or does it?), it appears male underwear does, leading as a convenience for a rapid succession of shameless penis mockery. Given last episode’s development of Stocking’s katanas, I’ve gathered that the weapon health/appearance depends on the gun/stocking’s origin/condition, because this is obviously useful information. And did anyone not see Brief’s underwear turning out to be amazing a mile away? The choice of weapon had me laughing though, a damn shotgun.
A Deviant Analysis:
So, it’s been four episodes, and we’ve all seen what PSG is like. Some herald it as the “anti-moe” anime, a piece of work that declares absolute war on what some perceive to be what’s hampering the anime industry. Because these moe/ecchi shows sell well and are relatively easy to create, it’s flooding every season, and poorer studios don’t dare to create an original show for being scared of an early retirement. Given how tight budgets are and how business just works, it’s easy to see why studios would opt for the “sure-fire” way to earn money. Hell, Hollywood has the same damn problem. But this isn’t the point or the argument I’m bringing up, because most of this argument is an exaggeration, and I see enough original series to not really complain.
The main question is PSG’s underlying reason for its existence. Was PSG created solely as a middle finger to those aforementioned shows? Is Imaishi Hiroyuki trying to express his hate for these shows, or is he truly just parodying American culture? A show that seems like a deviant project on the surface, but in reality might contain a message to the entire industry at its core. It’s definitely something interesting to ponder about, but don’t take it too seriously. It’s like.. brain food. :P