Sunday, 5 December 2010

Arakawa Under the Bridge x2 - Episode 9

Of all the jobs in the world, I think being the mail man for the residents under this show's bridge would have to rate as one of the most potentially dangerous... at least, it is if you're having to deliver your goods to Sister's church, anyhow.

Luckily, on this occasion the delivery man escapes in one piece while his package is picked up by Ric, who notes that said package is intended to be delivered to Whitey.  He soon also notes that this parcel contains important documents, and with knowledge of Whitey's wife and child swirling around in his head he soon puts two and two together and comes up with seventeen.  Still, any attempt to deliver this parcel to Whitey is delayed as he comes across its recipient hanging out with his own assistant Shimazaki, as he teaches her the nuances of the art of painting white lines - it's clearly more complicated and competitive than you might think, while Shimazaki is so entranced by Whitey it seems that she'll do pretty much anything to get closer to him.  From here, things between Kou, Shimazaki and Whitey wax and wane until we finally get to the crux of the matter - those important documents aren't divorce papers after all.

The second half of this instalment sees P-ko holding a very refined and cosmopolitan tea party for all of the residents; an event which brings us some decidedly oddball French amongst other things as its guests make small talk in the midsts of tea and sweets.  All of this proves too much for the Last Samurai, who simply cannot stand all this fancy foreign stuff, and with the Mayor's permission he instead hijacks the male side of the tea party to instead indulge in a far more Japanese and decidedly traditional tea ceremony.  This event then takes on an oddly competitive turn, with Ric and Star trying desperately to make out they understand and appreciate what the Hell is going on without actually having a clue, while the ceremony itself unsurprisingly takes an increasingly surreal turn in the hands of the Mayor in particular.

Given the translation nightmare that this episode proved to be (hence its late appearance on the scene), I think it's fair to say that it's an equally tough sell in places for the viewer as well.  Neither side of this episode proved to be particularly laugh out loud funny, but it was saved to some extent by a few great moments to roll out the guffaws.  Still, we got a little more movement in the Shimazaki love story, and the show clearly still hasn't entirely forgotten about the whole "trip to Venus" thing - no doubt we'll shift back into exploring such things next episode, judging by the layout of the series thus far.

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