「噂の傾奇者」 (Uwasa no kei ki mono)
“The Rumored Dandy”
Between the grand entrance of a new character and the re-introduction of an old friend, there was certainly no lack of visual panache in this episode. No matter how you look at it, this was a high-concept effort by Hyakka Ryouran and to say it has pulled it off spectacularly would be a gross understatement. I’ll be honest – I’m already a huge fan of Maeda Keiji and the fact that she is voiced by the legendary Noto Mamiko came as the cherry on top. It’s not just her striking appearance and lusty outfit that are such an eye-catch, she also sticks out almost immediately with her distinct penchant for molesting other females, whether it’s her boob-groping antics or bathroom pranks! I’m obviously a sucker for the onee-sama type, and the ones who are bold and unrestrained – not to mention being a fine dandy of the yuri kind – are definitely right up my alley. But that’s not all there is to Keiji and what makes her even more amazing is her proficiency in the great art of trolling – one who might even rival that of Gisen!
Keiji is certainly a woman of many talents and her mastery in the craft of disguise is merely one of them. Kanetsugu was already a riot in her own right, but who knew there can be so much spunk and spitfire in Keiji’s portrayal of the “warrior of love”. The brand new Kanetsugu – one who is sprinkled with the magic touch of Keiji, was completely over-the-top and it was such a phony who brought forth some of the best laugh-out-loud moments in this episode. As Sen Hime candidly pointed out, the real-Kanetsugu has never appeared to be as plucky as Keiji’s version, and despite the bold words that she constantly spews out, Kanetsugu’s a wimp at heart who chickens-out very easily. Clearly, Keiji is not the one who shies away from the high stakes, and not only did she terrorize the Shinkage dojo, she was also bold enough to pull some great pranks on the Dark Samurai – without so much as a flinch at that! There were many great comical moments in this episode, but if I had to pick a favorite, the bathroom scene definitely takes the cake as the best skit this week – the sight of Sen Hime jumping frantically in the hot tub and subsequently collapsing bare-assed, flat on her back, got a humungous laugh out of me. I’ve mentioned in the past that the flawless amalgamation of such scrumptious fanservice and comedic moments is what defines a good ecchi comedy and no question, Hyakka Ryouran is a true powerhouse in this respect!
As with so much that has happened in this show, there’s always a catch to their shenanigans and it was soon revealed that Keiji’s pranks has the alternate motive that doubled as an exercise for their “Qi” training. The mysterious “Qi” is a concept that has been explored countless times across many fictional stories and in Hyakka Ryouran’s context, it served as a stepping stone that marked the re-introduction of Golden-eyed Yagyuu Juubei – who is, of course, the uber badass of this show! Similar to her fellow vocal chameleon, Tomatsu Haruka – the voice of Mataemon in this show, Yuuki Aoi’s excellent portrayal of Juubei’s split personality is a testament to her wide voice-acting range and I’m not going to lie – I find the sensual voice that she used for for badass-Juubei extremely sexy, in a provocative way. The revelation that Juubei can’t revert back to her old self is an interesting twist which I wasn’t expecting – back in season one, it was stated that the Master Samurai persona is Juubei’s true front and a kiss that sets her botched contract right could erase the childlike façade permanently. Such a development warrants our attention and while I have no doubt second half of the show will focus on the inevitable clash with the Dark Samurai, Juubei’s ultimate fate is also a great variable that needs to be addressed before all is said and done.
- There’s something especially seductive about a girl who plays with her hair and Sen Hime’s depiction of it was certainly dripping with sexiness.
- Poor Hanzou is always at the crappy end of the bargain. That’s what it means to be the “M” of Sen Hime’s “S”!
- Everything that badass-Juubei says sounded perfectly “ero” to me. Why in the world would Muneakira find her rendition of “Onii chan” cringe-worthy?
- Gisen is not pleased. There’s another troll out there who is as skillful as she is!
- The sight of loli Kanetsugu must have sent a few lolicon to the ER – I know Stilts was on insulin drips all weekend!
- Kanetsugu used to be a “odango atama”! Maybe she was a fan of Sailor Moon.
- Sayonara, bitches! I hope this is not the last time we see Keiji’s magnificent attempt at cosplaying. An empowered Kanetsugu was such a blast to watch!
- I just can’t sing enough praises for the great background music in Hyakka Ryouran. I especially like the track that was featured during the Master Samurai transformation scenes.
tl;dr: @SeishunRC – #HyakkaRyouran Samurai Bride 06: The boob-groping and yuri-loving Maeda Keiji makes her grand entrance. Is that golden-eyed Juubei? #Anime
ED: 「結果、偶然でござ候」 (Kekka, Guuzen de Gozasourou) by 柳生十兵衛(悠木碧)、真田幸村(釘宮理恵)、徳川千(寿美菜子) (Yagyu Jubei [CV: Yuuki Aoi ], Sanada Yukimura [CV: Kugimiya Rie], Tokugawa Sen [CV: Kotobuki Minako])