「密航出航大跳躍」 (Mikkou Shukkou Daichouyaku)
“Smuggling, Leaving Port and a Leap”
Pirates, parfaits, and pleated miniskirts – oh my! At first glance, the idea of high school girls manning what essentially amounts to a small high-tech battleship without adult-supervision sounds exactly like a recipe for disaster. We already all know how risky and unsafe teenagers can be behind the wheel of a car – which is why placing them at the helm of a starship is basically asking for something to go wrong. And boy did things go wrong. Luckily for the girls, among them was a captain who has matured to beyond her years, one who was able to lead them out of a potentially ugly political incident.
Even before this episode started, I was excited to see the contrast between the Marika from when she was a mere student on the practice cruise and the Marika of today, who is a seasoned space pirate captain with numerous skirmishes under her belt and even a medal to boot. I thought she would have been a little more apprehensive since she has never led this particular group of girls before; only Jenny or Lynn have been the leader of the Yacht Club, and consequently, they were the de-facto captain on their cruises aboard the Odette II. However, Marika quickly assumed command like she was always meant to lead these young ladies, who followed her without a single complaint. Even Chiaki didn’t appear to second guess any of Marika’s decisions, aside from helping the two Serenity princesses (and her rivals in “love”?) stow away on board without Marika’s knowledge. Come to think of it though, Chiaki probably only did it because she either knew they’d be bringing her favorite desert with them, or she made them bring it. (What’s with Gruier by the way? One moment, she’s sincere and honest with Marika, and the next, she’s stalking her in disguise or stowing away aboard the Odette II. Silly princess, make up your mind!)
Once the girls get to the Bentenmaru is when Marika really begins to shine – but confidence can only get her so far without the help of the original crew. It was hilarious to watch them act like worried parents watching their little girl take out the car for a spin for the very first time, without either parent in the passenger seat. I haven’t had that experience yet, but I can still empathize with the old crewmembers in another way; seeing them type up the manual in a frenzied rush reminded me of the writers racing to put together RandomC’s spring season preview. Although they might not have thought enough of Marika to trust her with starting up the ship without a manual, it was nice seeing that they do have faith in her decision-making as a captain when it does matter. Similarly, I enjoyed seeing the Space Yacht Club girls all turn to their captain as well – which surprisingly included Chiaki too.
It was pretty neat that they included the moment when the girls finally see their blue pearl of a planet from the depths of space, but I would’ve liked more commentary from the girls other than about how pretty it is. Maybe it’s because they’re so used to space travel, but I’ve always considered this moment to be particularly important because many astronauts always speak fondly about it. It is the moment that things like borders, differences in race or religion, or human conflict all that becomes meaningless because of the new perspective; the planet becomes a tiny and fragile insignificant speck in the vast bleak expanse of the cosmos. But maybe that’s too much to ask for from a show about space pirates and high school girls, so I don’t really mind that it’s not there. I’m quite content with what Mouretsu Pirates has to offer already. There is not one single iota of shame in the following confession: I grinned like a Cheshire cat throughout this entire episode and I’m eagerly looking forward to grinning some more as the girls embark on their first job.
- Misa brought along this outfit to “blend in” on the hospital ship? Right… good luck with that.
- Full-length images: 03, 06, 07, 09, 12, 16, 17, 22, 23, 26, 30, 37, 39