IS: Infinite Stratos 2 – 10
「クッキング・マイ・ウェイ」 (Kukkingu Mai Uei)
“Cooking My Way”
8-Bit has officially cheaped out.
Cutting Away From The Action
At least three major times during this episode, 8-Bit cut away from some serious fanservice or action in order to pan lovingly across boring scenery. During the measurement scene, when Ichika and Cecilia were saying “misleading” things while cooking, and when Tabane kicked Madoka’s ass they cut out all the best parts! I can understand the second one, though a word to the wise – the “Oh my they’re saying risque things but really they’re doing something innocent!” gag doesn’t work when it’s been specifically noted what they’re going to be doing (in this case, cooking) immediately beforehand. The other two though? They cheaped out. We missed out on the best fanservice and the best action of the episode for no reason I can fathom other than budget constraints. How disappointing.
Related: I don’t necessarily mind the ‘ol panning-across-scenery-instead-of-showing-the-fanservice tactic. The imagination is a powerful thing, and in a more subtle show this coy tactic can send us to imagining far more titilating things than they could ever show us. Infinite Stratos is not a subtle show though, so this just came off as cheap when they happily show us fanservice the rest of the time.
Cecilia Is Lethal-Kawaii
Yukana is roughly 70% of the reason I like Cecilia. I know I’m more of a seiyuu-phile than many people are – I blame Div, he’s the one who got me onto that – but her performance really sold Cecilia’s cute, earnest, and slightly vulnerable attitude this episode. I enjoyed her antics, especially when she was flirting with Ichika at the end, but is it just me or did they have about half an episode’s worth of material in their central joke (Cecilia is a lethal cook har har har) that they stretched out into a full episode? It got very slow around the middle.
Either way, Char is still best girl. She saw her impending doom but she muscled onwards anyway to help out a friend! Too bad she got KO’d in the end. And Houki. And Laura. And probably Rin too, after she got charmed by Cecilia. You’re really just trying to kill off your competition, aren’t you Cecilia? Clever girl.
The best part of this episode was the return of Tabane and the awesome ass-whooping she ladeled out on Phantom Task. Now I still would have preferred to actually see it, and it came a bit out of left field to hear that she’s not only a genius but somehow also super strong as well(?), but I can’t deny that I didn’t enjoy it. It looks like Tabane is going to give Madoka a personal IS for her own reasons, so we know where the final challenge of this series will come in, presumably.
Fanservice or action will happen. Though maybe they’ll give us slow pans of scenery instead? Who knows.
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – 8-Bit cheaped out on the best parts of this episode, but Tabane was still cool & Cecilia was cute #is_anime 10
- The girls really are great characters and kind people, except for when it comes to Ichika. They really accepted Kanzashi as one of them – or if I’m reading too much into that, at least a friend – once they knew she hadn’t already won.
- Evil Chifuyu-nee is so sexy OH GODS!
- Points to Ichika where due: he actually can cook, which keeps him from being a failure of a man in my book, and he was also smart enough to pick something simple that Cecilia was unlikely to blow up.
- Chifuyu-nee is the only one who can beat Tabane without an IS? Chifuyu-nee really is amazing!
Check out my blog about storytelling and the fantasy novel I’m writing at stiltsoutloud.com. The last four posts: Don’t reject feedback rashly, Hard fantasy vs soft fantasy, What I’m thankful for, and On writing fast, writing well.