What a difference one week makes. After an arguably confusing and misleading introduction, Youjo Senki turns around and fills in the missing blanks, explaining just who our crazy little loli actually is. Personally I loved this episode through and through, we finally got Tanya’s back story, and topped it off with some delicious insanity represented by the multitude of crazy faces. Any concerns over Tanya being an enthusiastic nationalist should have been safely put to bed now, between that real world back story and our little loli’s objectives in his her new world. Although a lot of the source material has been cut and liberally changed, I loved how snippets of the severity of our salaryman’s rationality still came through, between mentions of the Chicago school to treating rules as absolute measures of societal perfection. Particularly hilarious was calling out God’s overwork as a failed business model, which definitely sums up the easy living predilections of this bureaucratic badass.
Although it’s mostly up to personal opinion whether Tanya’s personality can be considered morally bankrupt (it is), there’s no denying it’s an oddity among this character type. Normally these girls are simply overpowered pint-sized suspensions of disbelief, but Tanya throws a wrench—beyond the gender bending—into that archetype. This little blondie’s actions becomes a hefty bit of black humour when noting how they are performed for the sole purpose of getting promoted into a safe, secure rear line position. Berating the troops and tossing around nationalistic calls of superiority are done because they are the rules, and for our salaryman rules are the optimal path to a better life. While suspension of disbelief is certainly still required seeing an elementary school girl beat up grown men, having one with a novel back story minimizes (at least for me) the remaining problems. It helps too having both Tanya’s subordinates and the enemy question just what she is doing on the battlefield, which even with her magical prowess is not something easily explained away.
If the character issues can be overlooked, however, it’s hard denying Youjo Senki is visually one fun experience. At face value it’s hilarious watching the little blondie eagerly throw herself at the enemy with some seriously great crazy eyes, all accompanied to the well-timed interspacing of modern orchestral lines. For example I’m pretty damn sure the suicide bombing wouldn’t have been as great if we didn’t have that ridiculous “gotcha” face. For military-fantasy the visuals don’t get much better than this. Provided Youjo Senki can maintain a similar standard going forward, I will be one incredibly happy camper.
Next Time: The Power of Magic
While we received a good chunk of background information this week, next episode will likely continue the prologue by answering just how magically strong Tanya is. If the source progression is adhered to, also expect some further reveals on this world’s magic system. Mad scientists, magic, and little girls: the fun is just beginning boys and girls, God wills it.
Don’t get your hopes up over that Overlord Easter egg, the likely explanation is that both Youjo Senki and Overlord simply share the same editor.
OP: 「JINGO JUNGLE」 by MYTH & ROID