Episode three of Shangri-la begins with Kuniko awakening from a nightmare, only to be plunged into a new one - The nightmare of being the star of such a clumsy anime series. Yes, this third instalment of the show may not quite have plunged the depth of awful anime that episode two managed, it doesn't seem to be from want of trying.
While Kuniko herself has been more or less the sole bright light in this series so far, even she manages to take a turn towards being intensely annoying this time around, with her constant whining questioning of everything (even when under intense gunfire) only matched by her near complete ineptitude when it comes to doing anything from standing in a train carriage to running away. What happened to the girl who was unafraid to show her distaste for her former captors with a final moment of defiance, or the girl happy to take on an armed tank armed with only a boomerang? More importantly, who is the shadow of that girl who has taken her place?
Much of this ineptitude springs from Kuniko's decision that she wants to see the inner workings of Atlas, the place normally only opened to lottery winners and rumoured to be a paradise of sorts (compared to the squalor of the rest of the outside world anyway) that everybody wants a place within. This privilege was of course bestowed upon Miiko at the end of the last episode, and this time around she gets her dream place within Atlas.... But all is not as it seems.
Beyond that, we get a few other generic pieces of evil people being evil, including a scene where Lady Ryoko has her naked body dried by a male subordinate, which.... well, doesn't seem all that evil to me. In fact, do you think they need any new subordinates for episode four?
In all fairness to this episode, the revelations surrounding Atlas and the lottery winners who get their place within it did actually catch me by surprise, but then again maybe I'm just being dim - It was a nice little twist in my book, but if only there were some likeable characters to care about then it might have had some more impact. That twist in the tale aside, Shangri-la just seems to be going through the motions - Badly animated action sequences, bad guys that can't shoot for toffee, "humorous quips" in dangerous situations, gay jokes, blah blah blah. In short, it's boring, and to give a longer appraisal of this episode, it's booooooooooooooooring.