Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Jormungand - Episode 2

Having introduced us to its main characters and the show's premise in its opening episode, this week's instalment of Jormungand wastes literally no time in dropping arms dealer Koko into the midst of a war zone.

With two factions scrapping it out in an isolated area within Eastern Europe over an oil pipeline in the vicinity, Koko's plan is simply to drop off the goods she's selling and get the Hell out of there as quickly as possible - a smart idea for a girl prone to some decidedly crazy outbursts.  Once she arrives at the makeshift base of her buyer, it soon becomes clear that this deal will be anything but simple - not only is a slimy English arms dealer also present (with some crazed employees-cum-bodyguards of his own), but the buyer in question is also absolutely insistent that he does further business with Koko despite her disinterest in any further deals.

Given that all communications in the area are out, Koko has no choice but to allow herself to be escorted to the pass by some of her customer's troops, as does her rival in arms dealing - as we soon find out however, the two parties and in particular their bodyguards have a decidedly different way of dealing with being kept under such a tight leash.  Ultimately though, Koko's judgement (or her streak of insanity, depending upon how you look at it) prove to be enough to get her and her comrades out of trouble - and in doing so, she might just have left a good impression upon young Jonah into the bargain....

If there's one great thing about this week's episode of Jormungand, it's Koko's character throughout - for all of her outbursts and bouts of madness, her sharp eye and good judgement in any given situation goes a long way towards making this instalment enjoyable when coupled with her astute analysis of the scenario in which she finds herself.  Although we don't see much of Jonah at all, Koko's attitude also puts an interesting twist in his own feelings moving forward that will doubtless be explored further as the series progresses.  That aside, what Jormungand offers here isn't an unqualified success - its pace and story-telling feels uneven, with some aspects that feel unnecessary, poorly relayed or both, but for the most part the show's scenario and the way it depicts its characters and ponders the nature of human conflict in an easy, accessible way make it pretty watchable for the most part.

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