「茉莉香、決意する」 (Marika, Ketsui Suru)
“Marika Makes a Decision”

“Electronic Warfare, Start! Last week’s episode title led me to believe I’d get to see Odette II’s battle against their unknown enemy Lightning 11, only to hold off after some more strategic build-up, so my anticipation for this episode was a bit higher than usual. Much to my pleasant surprise, it didn’t disappoint — both in terms of building suspense in the bridge room with no portrayal of the opposition and depicting how Marika is well-suited to be the next captain of Bentenmaru.

Looking back, I still feel that the pacing could’ve been sped up a bit in these last two episodes, condensing the material into a single twenty-minute showing; however, I’m not adverse to the inherit benefits that come with a series being able to take its time to tell its story. After all, I’ve already gotten a good sense of how well-thought-out the sci-fi aspect is simply from listening to the characters talking amongst themselves about everything from ship protocols to electronic warfare. Nothing is really left open to interpretation in favor of time, as we get to see Marika and the others think through the problems that they encounter. In this day and age, this is a luxury that most light novel adaptations simply don’t have, so I see it as Mouretsu Pirates deciding to invest — not waste — five of its twenty-six episodes to properly illustrate how Marika ultimately decides to succeed her late father. This approach has worked well in terms of establishing the world, characters, and premise, and also comes with the side benefit of shattering the misconception that this series is just about high school girls “playing” space pirates by adding a believable level of seriousness to everything that happens.

While I can’t say I was hinging on all the technical details of what transpired in the Space Yacht Club’s first electronic war, I did find the attention to detail during it all fascinating. This goes doubly for Marika’s strategy itself where the club laid a trap by pretending to be a helpless ship that was getting hacked, and took the care to turn off their radar emitter to make it look like they were troubleshooting it and delay Jenny’s response to make it look like their captain just woke up. Little details like that made the eventual Chihayafuru-like poetry hacking pretty engrossing to watch, but it wasn’t until the moment came for Marika to shine (pun intended) that the whole endeavor really felt worthwhile. It was just awesome to see Marika’s quick thinking turn the tides by reflecting the Tau star’s light at Lightning 11, and then Bentenmaru and Chiaki’s father’s ship, Barbalusa, swooping in and firing their beam cannons. Too cool.

I gather where things go from here should be even cooler though, now that Marika’s decided to become the new captain of Bentenmaru and will take part in real pirate activities. What I’m most looking forward to is seeing the rest of the crew, which Chiaki looks like she’ll be joining as a representative from her father’s ship.

* I found it funny how Jenny was absolutely repulsed by the mere though of using optical sensors. “They’re using their eyes? Eww!”
* Full-length images: 04, 18, 22, 29.




  1. never read the light novels, so was very surprised when Chiaki was revealed as the daughter of Barbalusa’s captain. would’ve been more interesting if we see Marika and Chiaki going head to head as pirate captains though.

  2. The “Fools!” response was a callback to Space Battleship Yamato. There was also a callback to Captain Harlock back in episode one with the password.

    I’m pleasantly surprised at how well this series is executing what would normally be an incredibly ridiculous concept. Japan seems to agree, as preorders skyrocketed once this episode aired.

  3. I wish my field trips could be this awesome.

    Don’t know about everyone else but I found the build up of the last four episodes was worth the payoff here. Seeing the real cyberwarfare was great, especially how the girls showed their step by step counter by their faux-panic methods. Its trolling(IN SPACE!!!!!) at its finest especially when Jenny sent the “Fools” message. A particualrly great touch was how they showed the crew giggling like high school girls. Probably because they ARE high school girls.

    Then the Lightning II opts for the “F*** it, lets just shoot them!” method it resulted in actal tension. It was nice to see Marika just sit there and rack her brains thinking and come up with a plan while the bridge starts to feel panic.

    I kind of feel sorry for the Lightning II crew now. “Owned by high school girls” will look pretty bad in their resume if they ever decide to go back to sailing(IN SPACE!!!!).

      1. Pic 1: Erectonic Warfare? WOW 🙂 dont know, that there is some kind of Erection 🙂 i bet they meant Electronic Warfare

        Pic 2: Dammy? Is it not Dummy System?

        And Barbalusa or Barbarrosa. You know that Japanese have problems with the Pronounce of the English R and other

      2. The the Japanese viewer the letters D A M M and Y are part of the romanji letter system. Which are Japanese sounds represented by the letters of the Roman alphabet.

        A is the ah sound in father
        U is the oo sound in doom

        D ah is closer to the sound the word dummy makes than D oo would be.

  4. I have no problems with the pacing, it seems perfect considering it’s not just the space fight but also all the characters and the technology of the world that was shown. I wonder what’ll happen to the other students though. I hope all their development these last few episodes won’t disappear once Marika is a captain.

  5. I kind of expect most of their space battles to be like this one with the cyber warfare and stuff, so at least once the Bentenmaru goes straight into the warfare with other ships, no viewer should be going “what the hell are they doing?”

    1. Add:

      When they said, “The enemy is using Optical Targeting Systems”. My first Idea was, “Blind the Gunner with the Sun!” They have the Sun Sails. But if you concentrate the reflected Sun Focus Point (perhaps they don not wanted to Melt the Enemy right away) you will get a Laser Beam..

      And Lucky for them, that the Gunner dont used or havened a Sun Light Filter installed 🙂 Perhaps the Surprise Bonus was here a Key Factor for Victory

    2. Add:

      What you think, what we will use in the Future? A forward System of Move or Kinect? 🙂 You see the Interaction with 3D.. Even the Captain writing, and Delete with a Hand Movement

  6. My favorite anime of the season continue to impress me!

    A tiny bit disappointed that we don’t get to see more actual combat, but nonetheless entertaining.

    PS: How on earth u use optical sensor to target something less than 100m in length with 400,000 km away !? (@_@) * as shocking as Jenny *

    1. Well, first there are no Atmospheric Turbulence. And i think that the Positions Light of them where still On. So, if you wanna hide in Space. turn all off, heat sources.. even the Positions Lights. i bet the Masts have some too..

      1. to made it simple:

        You see the Stars in the Heaven, when it*s Dark? Imagine if something is moving between your Line of Sight from a Star, it turn Black for a Moment. So you realize that something moved between you..

        It’s that simple, well to much simple. But helps to get the Gist, how it works.. In the Science they even calculate the “Light Waves” like Infra red and so on, to get the Distance

        And, while they shoot. The “Energy Wave” work as a Spotlight too. Illuminates the Ship for a Second. So they can “adjust” the Shooting

  7. Even though they throw a lot of tech stuff in your face, I’m really impressed and enjoying the strategy/tactics part of the episode, and I thought when she said “secret weapon” she meant something like this:

    Chiaki: We are being bombarded by the enemy ship and we cannot move. What shall we do?
    Marika: We use a secret weapon!
    Chiaki: W-what??
    Marika: We will send out the Gun***!!
    Chiaki: Ehh?

    She really looks out of place in this picture. She just looks too adorable.

  8. 1.Engrish is fact of life in Japan – get used to it.
    2.Great job on the battle sequence, from the cybertrap and the simulated “stupid little girls” to the fast counterattack, to the “what? they are aiming optically?”, to brilliant (pun intended!) use of the solar sails (approved by Archimedes!), to the arrival of the cavalry and…
    3.Introduction of the Chiaki – I guess this solves most of the question of why she was so knowledgable in space combat and so used to barroom , erm, meido cafe brawls…
    4.As a cherry on top, we have “Live long and prosper!” coming from Marika’s mom!

  9. Turning sunlight into one step short of a laser in space… Marika, I love you. It was also great fun how well the Yacht Club used the fact that they were being underestimated to just completely blindside poor Lightning 11. Gotta feel a bit sorry for those guys. I gotta agree though, most series suffer because they won’t stop talking about details, but that’s where Mouretsu Pirates thrives! It’d be hard to describe to someone who hasn’t seen the show, but the way they weren’t all just talking heads had a lot to do with it.


    1. As far as i know, we have a Sun Light Solar Reactor on Earth. Where they use many Mirrors to focus Sun Light on a tiny Point. To create Heat above 11.000 Celsius? i think. Still dont know, if it still in working. I saw on a Documentation on TV years ago..

      Oh of course, these Sun Solar Reactor is based on a Desert

  10. So who else thought of the Taioken/Solar Flare attack when they blinded the Lightning 11?
    I’m happy Marika started calling her mom “mom”, I didn’t say it back when ep 1 aired but that was really bugging me. At first I thought it was Ririka san herself who told her to call her like that because of her personality. I like girls respectful of their parents.

    I’m also looking forward to next week (like the narrator tells us to in each preview) to get an introduction of the Bentenmaru’s crew (and Kane’s wife).

      1. I agree. A very good-looking young single male is exactly the last person a prestige girls high school wants to hire as a replacement teacher. So apparently Kane had to lie about his marriage status.

    1. Marika calling her mother by her first name does not have anything to do with being disrespectful.
      Apparently in Japan calling your parents by their first name denotes a friendship like relationship with your parents (like how you only call your close friends by their first name), rather than a strict parent-child relationship.
      Marika using “mom” at the end of the episode shows her determination to leave her home and become a pirate, which means she not only has to bid farewell to the friend part but also to the mother part of Ririka.

  11. Again a good episode. The first half was the crew doing the playing possum plan and it showed how careful they were with the hacker already placing fake cctv footage.

    The enemy ship wasn’t idiotic either. Despite the speed of the entire hacking attack, the decision to shut down the main computer was taken decisively and quickly after the ecm was too weak to break the hacking. The straight use of optical sights (basicaly telescopes) by the enemy ship and the reactive counter of the solar sails really showed a good tactical chess match.

    Its not everyday you can say that a nameless captain that is an enemy in anime wasn’t a roll over. Most anime would have Odette firing some left over super weapon from its warship days or the Bentenmaru charing in to save the day.

    Zaku Fan
    1. Oh and the knife shaped ships are pretty and Chiaki’s actual identity was a good minor wham since even though it had been obvious she’s well versed in pirate/privateer stuff, i thought she was actually a rival of some sort for the captaincy

      Zaku Fan
  12. I facepalmed at Jenny’s reaction when she found out they were using optics too. Well I suppose it makes her less than perfect which now makes her a more believable character.

    Loved the time and detail they put into the space combat it made it much more engrossing and realistic especially for a military nut such as myself. Almost like a teenage japanese girl Tom Clancy inspired show.

    I like that they took their time to flush out the characters and showed the struggles they faced, it made it much more believable and in the long run more enjoyable to watch and makes the transition to Marika’s captainship much smoother.

    Also she finally called her mom “Mom”. I took note of that. Makes me curious as to the significance.

    1. I can somehow relate to her reaction. I mean, government offices here in my country still use old mechanical typewriters to make documents. Makes me go O_o since we’re already in frikkin’ 2012.

      People tend to rely on technology too much that simple, mundane tasks become extraordinary feats. Well, long-range optical ranging is not that simple but I hope you get the point. I wouldn’t want to go on a gun sniping contest with who ever was aiming that energy cannon 400,000 kilometers away.

      1. I understand the point your trying to make but taht’s not quite what I meant.

        What your describing is based on obsolescence like: “Why are they using something as antiquated as that when we’ve hade PCs for decades?”

        What I got from Jenny’s reaction was: “How is such a thing even possible?” To the point where Chiaki had to explain it to her like this: “They look through a scope and they pull the trigger”. I would have sounded a lot more condesending than she did while saying it though. It’s just that I got the impressiong that she didn’t understand such a basic concept when she seems so knowledgable.

        I wouldn’t want to get in a sniping match like that either but they were the only ones with a gun(at first) so they had nothing too lose(at first). But I concede your point.

  13. I’m surprised how long it took them to make Marika make her decision, not that I’m complaining since this was very interesting. It also makes me more exited to see what a space pirate does.

  14. GratEng a plenty, this is still a good episode. I was expecting them to somehow use those small mirrors they were using to sail, what I didn’t expect is that Chiaki is also a daughter of a privateer captain. Or that the cavalry will arrive shortly after. The use of sunlight against an enemy using optics is brilliant, no pun intended.

    Next week is Marika’s first day as a captain?

    The Moondoggie
  15. So Marika is “Kirk” and Chiaki is “Spock”
    then Marika’s mom tells her at the end: “live a long life” AKA: “live long and prosper”
    XD lol, coincidence?

    Helvetica Standard
    1. I think you are hitting on something there. It felt like I was watching an episode of Star Trek (the Next Generation) But in this case as you mentioned, yes Marika is the acting Captain and Chiaki is the First Officer/Commander – Kirk and Spock.


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