「リコリスの料理ショー」 (Rikorisu no Ryouri Shou)
“Lycoris Cooking Show”
I dare say the most appropriate question at this point is where do we go from here? Cutie pie vampire went to space. Cutie pie vampire survived the rigors of space. Cutie pie vampire returned to the loving arms of soon-to-be cutie pie vampire loving attendant. Should I stop saying cutie pie vampire? Probably, but damn if she isn’t a cutie pie vampire.
After the excitement of last episode’s climactic outburst I was honestly expecting some nail biting tension for Irina’s grand ascent into space, yet colour me surprised when that never transpired. While the suspense was very much real at points (early spaceflight was no joke on the nerves of astronaut and ground crew both), a lot of it was effectively muted and seemingly more for aesthetics than actual practicality. The explosives for example never really came off as ominous as previously teased: we knew they were there, Irina knew they were there, but the fear and worry you’d expect from their presence never really came up over the course of events. Mind you it’s not a serious problem as this episode checked off all the boxes, but still somewhat disappointing considering how heavily this moment has been played up. Guess we can chalk another one up as a casualty of quick and dirty adaptation pacing!
Where it’s hard to find fault, however, is in what comes next, because oh boy if one little seed hasn’t suddenly found the strength to sprout. Although I have my issues with how quickly Lev wound up getting freed as Franz was quietly liquidated – no man ever under suspicion in the USSR would be exonerated that quickly – it and the following return of Irina to Earth safely certainly opened the doors on the possibilities to come. Besides the inevitable romance on its way, you can be sure Irina’s life is now in greater danger as some will be looking to eliminate her before any potential leak occurs (as Lev helped increase the odds of) or others can capitalize on her historical success. After all, don’t forget Zirnitra has its political cliques previously brought up, and much like Khrushchev’s USSR quite a few don’t see the purpose of space as anything more than an alternate attack vector.
It’s anyone’s guess just what the hell happens in this story and with Irina next, but rest assured that whatever it is will involve a return of our cutie pie vampire into the final frontier.