Uma Musume: Pretty Derby! Episode 8 Collaboration featuring Irina (in bold) from I Drink And Watch Anime.
We’re back in the saddle! I’m sorry guys, this is going to be a rough one… It’s okay I’m a rough rider (I don’t even know what that means… calling it now, worst review ever!)
This week, we saw Suzu work her way back into racing form, but it’s Spe who really struggled as she lost sight of her goals and herself! Is that a good synopsis? To be fair, it’s better than anything I could have come up with!
This week we had quite a bit of development from late comer Grass Wonder, so important question, what do you think of that name? Like all the name’s in this show, ridiculous and I love it. #420blazeit. Good, I’m not the only one who sees it.
Giving a bit of limelight to Grass Wonder means less time for the other girls, are you OK with the show…switching horses late in the race (I warned you!)? I didn’t think there could be a horse girl with a more monotone cadence to her voice than Silence Suzuka, but Grass Wonder has her pipped at the post! (See I can do it too!)
I like monotones, don’t you? It’s situational, like obviously Kanna (from Kobayashi) is amazing but these ones are kind of boring… although I guess we can’t have all the characters be high-energy all the time, that would be get annoying too.
I quite liked the way Suzu and Spe’s relationship is being handled, what do you think? I do, actually. It’s not something I’m used to but it is something I can totally relate to. Being so obsessed with something or someone that you lose sight of yourself and your own identity in pursuit it. Good stuff!
Would you change anything? At first I thought Suzuka might snap at Spe-chan for doting on her too much, but I think Suzuka is far too kind and meek for that. I guess if they’re going for that kind of storyline I would have liked Suzuka to be more active (either for or against this influx of attention) rather than do nothing, but I guess there’s still time for it to eventuate one way or another. I must say, Suzu’s enabling tendencies are part of what makes this particular dynamic more unusual to me, and more interesting.
It’s sort of common to lose yourself in a new crush, how do you think it will play out? Do I think they’ll have some sort of epic falling out, go their separate ways, sulk about it for a bit only to realise how much they need each other just before one of them’s about to go on to a big race? Yes, I think exactly that will happen. Maybe. I don’t know, this show’s kind of hard to predict!
Once again, the episode was centered around character development and classic Sports tropes, even showing some less impressive sides of Spe’s personality. I quite liked it so I’m assuming you didn’t. Was there still parts you liked? Wow! Harsh. I actually think this was my favourite episode of the series so far, and not because of parts that reminded me of sports anime (remember I’ve only seen like two whole sports anime, I’m hardly well versed in their tropes), but just how low-key and real some moments were, like after losing the race just the static shots of empty places round the school and Spe-chan walking alone at night. Contemplating who she really is and what she really wants.
Also if we’re talking about parts we liked, I always love the narrative implications of a time skip. And a 9+ month one in this episode, albeit it’s only used to accelerate Suzuka’s healing process, but kudos for showing the real-life implications of such injuries on a character and the people around them. I wouldn’t say it’s used ONLY to speed up the recovery. At the same time, as Spe is pouring herself into Suzu’s recovery, she’s slowly getting closer to Grass Wonder. We understand that they’ve essentially been having lunch and spending free time together for months now and that’s why the (pseudo love triangle) rivalry works. Grass isn’t just throwing a fit, her fairly close friend, who she’s been talking to and supporting daily for the better part of a year, doesn’t even take her into consideration.
Those parting words of – I was able to run my best because I was running against you… are a particularly brutal jab when you take it in that context. Otherwise they would seem out of place and shallow. Yeah, I was all like “damn, gurl!” when she said it to Spe-Chan!
It also showed us the Spe has a tendency for self defeating behavior. She overeats when she’s sad or stressed which makes her slower. She ignores her training to help Suzu which makes it less likely that she’ll have a chance to run with her…so on. It’s a nice, relatable, meaty character flaw and I appreciate that it was shown to be recurrent rather than a fluke. Almost like this show is deeper than you first gave it credit for *nudge nudge*. Yes, everyone who thought this was going to be a deep psychological series was right!
What would you like to see next? Another beach episode? They did say summer is coming up again—maybe that’s the true reason for the time skip! I can’t say I go into a lot of CGDCT anime with a lot of ‘expectations’ of what I’d like to see next week beyond ~closer relationships~ between the characters.
I’d like to know what you’d like to see next week, Irina? I would actually like to see some development in the rest of the team. I don’t know anything at all about the other girls. Maybe a super goofy filler ep of a day in the life of Gold Ship and New Girl. I would also like to know what happen to one evil girl. Did they drown her? Probably, only nice horse girls allowed! Send the others to the glue lube factory!
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