What’s the show? Han-Gyaku-Sei Million Arthur, Episode 8.
So how’s this episode? Remember last episode when I was complaining about the show not pandering to my specific tastes and how I was annoyed but still okay because I knew it’d be fixed by the next one?
Vaguely, yes. Well it’s fixed and everything is a-ok!
Uh-huh… and how much fan-service fixed this problem? None, actually! So you can cut out that judgemental tone! This was an episode about 3 girls who’d used their finding of their respective ‘Excaliburs’ to become magical girls and it was very fun and wholesome and cute!
Okay, fine, I’m listening. What happens? So to sum it up quickly, Kakka, Renkin and Yamaneko go to a famously walled seaside town that though its history was prone to foreign invaders, except when they arrive they kind there is no wall to speak of–but that’s because the “invaders” are being fought off by three prototypical ‘magical girls’ and despite the fact these ‘Arthurs’ are using their ‘Excaliburs’ for inherently noble purposes like protecting the town it’s still our heroes job to stop them and destroy their excaliburs. And unlike other episodes where the ~evil~ Arthur(s) in question are easily defeated, here these magical girls put up a damn good fight, almost defeating our trio until the fairy partners save them by hiding them in the sewers.
Wait, why are they trying to defeat people who are only doing good with their excaliburs? Because that’s their job, and I’m wondering if there’s going to be some deeper discussion about blindly following orders and how that’s problematic later down the track but then again I don’t think this is that kind of show. Anyway, after a period of time for each group to lick their wounds they confront again and have a close fight, only for the town to beset upon by robot invaders. So the six of them form a temporary truce and fight off the invaders together only for a boss robot to appear and in their fight against it the magical girls’ ‘Excaliburs’ are broken. It’s a convenient way of having our protagonists avoid seeming like the ‘bad guys’ by not having to destroy them themselves.
I see, seems like a kind of serious episode? In a way. Though there’s requisite levity when applicable, like when the magical girl trio admonishes our three for interrupting them by attacking during their long-winded introduction. Also as usual the after-credits stuff is as bonkers as ever…
Anything else to add? Oh yes. There’s a lovely moment when the magical girl Arthur’s are seemingly defeated by the boss robot and so the children of the town rush out and form a human wall in front of the imposing threat, followed by the rest of the adult townsfolk. It’s a genuinely touching moment and something so earnest that I’d dare say it’s unexpected from this series.
So overall thoughts? While a drier and somewhat darker episode than some of the more comedic focused episodes this was still a lot of fun and helped remind me why I watch this series after the previous episodes’ various failings. Hopefully the show can maintain this level of focus and quality going forward!
Previous Han-Gyaku-Sei Million Arthur Reviews:
6 vs 1 Million – Episode 1 Review
Hammer Time – Episode 2 Review
Mine Your Own Business – Episode 3 Review
In A Pickle – Episode 4 Review
Painted Into A Corner – Episode 5 Review
Life’s A Beach – Episode 6 Review
A Thorny Issue – Episode 7 Review
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