(Ningyou Janai ka? / Giwaku Janai ka? / Tozan Shinai ka?)
“Isn’t That a Doll? / Isn’t it Suspicious? / Won’t You Go Mountain Climbing?”
Creepy dolls, invisible American scientists, and mountain climbing. This wasn’t an overly hilarious episode, but still had its moments when Ika was scared to death of Eiko’s old doll (as opposed to ghosts) and received a beat down from a king cobra in the mountains. In addition, one skit even broke away from the usual Ika hazing and focused on Chizuru instead. As Cyndi’s new alien interest, Chizuru’s hair and blood samples were the objective of that one, except it was ridiculously short-lived thanks to her threatening reverse psychology. Lesson of the day? Don’t mess with Chizuru or she’ll slice you up.
I don’t know what happened to the Ika who wasn’t afraid of anything she can’t see, but Eiko got the frightened reaction that she was looking for back in episode three. This time, she wasn’t purposely trying to scare Ika either, which kind of added to the humor. Granted, the technical side of me was still irked by how Depp could be reacting to Johnny’s presence in the storage shed, seeing as infrared communication needs a line of sight to work. Between that technological oversight and a cursed doll, it may have made more sense if the latter were the cause. You know, assuming that you believe in curses and whatnot.
I’ll be the first to admit that I find dolls creepy to some degree. Regardless, I actually liked how Johnny’s disappearance played out like an unsolved murder mystery. The screenplay was nicely done with the music, the flashbacks, the decrepit hand sticking out of the box, and everyone’s initial reactions, and made it pretty easy to see where things were headed. Predictability didn’t ruin the fun one bit, as the horror movie parody was exactly the effect they were going for. Great stuff.
Seeing as Ika hates using her hands and feet, I got a good chuckle from her laziness when she tried to bail on their mountain climbing excursion. To her credit, she did manage to find her second wind when Eiko mocked her endurance and invasion plans. The best part of that was how it lasted only a minute or so, before she was completely gassed again. It’s always fun seeing Ika talk the talk, but be unable to walk the walk. Ika’s misfortune means our enjoyment after all.
As mentioned, this week’s episode didn’t have any laugh until you cry moments. However, it did give us a few different looks with the horror parody and Ika in the wilderness, before hitting us with the somewhat depressing news that the next one will be the last. On the plus side, it looks like it’ll focus around a beach volleyball tournament, where Eiko and Ika will be teaming up and Chizuru will be around to destroy the competition. The still nameless daughter of the Minami Kaze manager makes an appearance as well, which never hurts considering how cute she is. Anyway, I still prefer the indoor variety of the sport, but whenever an anime has a volleyball-related episode, I tend to look forward to it. After seeing Ika in the baseball one, this should prove to be a lot of fun… even if it’s for the last time. Sequel? Please?