「次はアンツィオです！」 (Tsugi wa Antsio Desu!)
“Anzio is Next!”
This was a week which shed a fair bit of light onto some of the questions that have come up earlier in the series. Perhaps the most notable is Miho’s past and upbringing. Given that her mother (Touma Yumi) taught that the Nishizumi motto prided victory over all else, it’s not all that much of a surprise that Miho ran away when she caused a loss. Nor is it much of a surprise that Maho would treat her coldly (though it seems she’s always been rather stoic) in face of that fact. It’s a little strange where things are going in terms of the PTSD thread – was that scene in the river the one we’re supposed to associate with it? It seems to be heavily implied that it was. But then, if she saved those people (I imagine she would react very differently to what Yukari said if she hadn’t, unless she’s repressing the memories but I still doubt we’re going into those reaches of grimdark) and her only failure was in the loss itself, then perhaps the PTSD has been completely overblown by fandom. It’s been a pretty light-hearted series so far so there’s no guarantee that the first emergence of the supposed PTSD wasn’t used entirely for exaggerated comic effect. I’m not fully willing to dismiss it just yet, but for now, it seems we may have diverged from the concerning events I’d heard about in the so-called prequel manga.
The Nishizumi teachings also taught something else, something that Miho apparently didn’t take as seriously as prioritising victory or she would never have fled in the wake of the losses she caused: ‘No matter what happens, we move forwards.’ It’s a much better motto than doing whatever it takes to win, and one that Miho has started to follow unconsciously. Despite everything that happened to her in the past, she’s taken up leading tanks and winning battles for her team while enjoying it the whole time. When the series started, she was unwilling to move on – still clinging to the idea that she’d have nothing to do with the way of the tank, but since being forced into the role, she’s learnt how to put the past behind her and move forwards.
Thankfully, the entirety of the drama I was worried about at the end of the previous episode was deftly sidestepped. Instead of being drawn out, it had already been cast aside before the episode began, instead giving us a glimpse of the dynamic between Mako and her loud and fiery grandmother (Aikawa Rikako). Not all families show their feelings openly – on the surface, Mako and her grandmother don’t seem to get along at all, nor do they seem particularly close given that she was unaware of Mako’s tank driving. But they still obviously care about each other as the only remaining family they have, Mako’s parents having died in an accident.
Finally, we have the smaller titbits of information such as when the way of the tank was founded and why they’re on impossibly large ships. It makes a lot of sense for most of the schools to have independence – it fits right in with the national themes of each of the teams. I have to wonder if each of these independent groups go so far as to mimic things such as the laws of the countries their teams represent. One thing that wasn’t explained is just how Oarai manage to lose their tanks in such ridiculous places. Their search this time found them a Tiger P deep within the ship (and some sailor girls too!), a Renault B1 Bis stuck in a river, and a 7.5cm KwK 40 L/43 used for hanging laundry. Hopefully next week we’ll get to meet the two new teams that crew them!
It was inevitably going to happen at some point – the series’ run was never going to support showing every single battle and episodes would have to be conserved somewhere for the glorious Pravda battle and the climatic face-off between Miho and Maho. I’m not really going to complain about it since this episode brought us some background info while simultaneously deepening the bonds between the different teams and showing us how their feelings towards the way of the tank have evolved. But at the same time, I feel as though a little more of the episode could’ve been devoted to Anzio. It would’ve been nice to see how Oarai managed to swing a victory, though from the single image we saw, it seems like Anzio fluked their way past the French (or maybe were surrendered to har har) even more so than Oarai did against Saunders.
tl;dr: @MoombaDS – More tanks join the Oarai line-up and we finally get some answers! #GaruPan
- Everyone wants a piece of Miho! Must be tough being that popular!
- Saori is the only member of the team who apparently has nothing she can do to help in relation to the way of the tank. I don’t think I’d trust her with love advice either!
- I never really noticed how tall the volleyball team are before…
- Yukari gets her own name courtesy of the history team: Guderian!
- It seems like Reizei is even more sleepy this episode despite her words to the contrary!
ED: 「Enter Enter MISSION !」 by 渕上舞、茅野愛衣、尾崎真実、中上育実、井口裕香 (Fuchigami Mai, Kayano Ai, Ozaki Mami, Nakagami Ikumi, Iguchi Yuka)