Tenma is excited about playing basketball after reading a basketball manga. Two of the best players in her class appear to be Sagano and Asou. Hearing Tenma cheer on Asou, Harima leaps up and makes a dunk. Unfortunately, he doesn’t know how to get down from the basket afterwards. Meanwhile, a first year named Tawaraya Satsuki is trying to start a female basketball team and she gets the school nurse Anegasaki Tae to be the sponsor. Her goal is the district tournament this month. The boy’s team sponsor Tani-sensei suggests that they get Asou to help. For the team, Satsuki recruits Sagano, Mikoto (who needed a little encouragement from Hanai before joining), Ichijou, Lala (who is strong, but doesn’t really know how to play), and Tenma. Tae decides to give them all nicknames: “Rookie” for Satsuki, “Okami” for Sagano, “Ichi-san” for Ichijou, “D”, er no “Miko-chan” for Mikoto, and “Gori” for Lala. Since Lala doesn’t know what “Gori” stands for, Ichijou tells her that it means strong, big, and wise. It’s not until later that Lala finds out “Gori” is short for gorilla.
As the days go on, the team gets better and better. Tae happens to notice that Satsuki seems to like their coach Asou, and gives her some advice in the form of a Sun Tzu quotation: “if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles.” Tenma overhears this and later tells her friends how Satsuki likes Asou. They also discuss how Satsuki happens to eat a lot but doesn’t grow much. During practice, while Mikoto is talking to Asou, Satsuki comes and challenges her to a one-on-one. Satsuki makes her shot and pisses Mikoto off by saying that Mikoto still has a ways to go. Afterwards, the entire team except for Satsuki (who says that she has somewhere to go) goes to Asou’s restaurant for dinner. Satsuki actually shows up anyway, saying that she was planning on coming here in the beginning. She keeps ordering more and more food and eating it all until she’s so stuffed that she falls over. Since they live in the same direction, Mikoto carries her home. Mikoto’s actually developed a lot of respect for Satsuki and thinks that she’s beautiful. Back at the restaurant, Asou tries to charge Lala 18000 yen for all the food, but Lala has no money.
In the Tsukamoto household, Yakumo has been making meals for her sister, who’s now on the basketball team. Or so Tenma thinks anyway. The team only needs five players, so Tae tells Tenma that she’s going to be the substitute for anyone who’s tired. The rest of the team is improving more and more. Lala learns how to shoot basket correctly from Satsuki. Imadori, who compares himself to Michael Jordan, tries to join the team as a coach, but Lala prevents all of his shots and beats him up instead. Asou, meanwhile, gives Mikoto pointers on shooting and asks Satsuki to teach her since Satsuki’s form is really good. However, after Asou says that, Satsuki can’t seem to make another shot. Class 2-D’s Tougou Masakazu also comes and offers his basketball help as the “Big Bull” of Texas, but they turn him down. As for Tenma, she can’t seem to bring herself to tell Yakumo that she isn’t getting to play, and just accepts all of Yakumo’s home-made boxed lunches. She ends up eating all of the food herself, even when Yakumo made enough food for the entire team. Thus, Tenma becomes fat and depressed. Sitting alone on the swings on night, she’s approached by Tougou. He tells her that she’s not the only one being oppressed and presents Harima and Imadori. Together, these “Outlaws” want to show everyone their power, so they’re going into special training. Somewhere nearby, Tae feels that the wind is coming.
This really is a perfect example of how School Rumble can switch gears and go into a different genre (sports in this arc) and remain entertaining and funny. The manga style opening was a nice touch that wasn’t found in the SR manga. I think the standout performance for the episode was Lala. Every scene she was in was hilarious, from her initial entrance to the “gori” name to her one-on-one with Imadori.
The prospect of Tenma joining such a potentially powerful team, led by the always-over-the-top Toudou, is rather amusing. We’ll get to see next episode how this “Outlaw” team turns out. *is looking forward to seeing Yakumo in a jersey*