Thursday, 18 October 2012

GIRLS und PANZER - Episode 2

Having caught everyone by surprised with its final pull-back and reveal at the end of the first episode, you'd be forgiven for thinking that Girls und PANZER might take a little time to explain just why this town exists aboard what looks more akin to an aircraft carrier.  However, think again, as this situation gets nary a mention in episode two.

Instead, our focus is largely upon finding some tanks for the girls before the arrival of their instructor the next day - with one tank safely holed up in the club's garage, it's time to go hunting around time to find the other tanks used by the former Tankery club of years previously.

With those vehicles found successfully in short order, and with Miho gaining a new friend in the form of admirer and blatant tank otaku Yukari Akiyama in the process, the flashy (and probably rather expensive) arrival of the new class instructor Captain Ami Chouno means that it's time to start learning how to drive and operate these newly-found tanks.  Captain Chouno certainly doesn't seem to be a believer of taking things slowly, sending all of the groups of wannabe Tankery experts (or wannabe volleyball players in the case of one of the teams) straight out into the field to partake in a mock battle.  Probably not the best place to go and take a nap then...

Despite its scenario becoming ever more ludicrous between some of its characters and the entire setting of a town atop an aircraft carrier, there's a heady blend of outright fun and educational content that actually makes this instalment surprisingly enjoyable to watch.  It perhaps speaks a lot of the show's clichéd characters that it's the tanks themselves which are the stars of the show - learning a little about them and how to operate them is a pleasure in itself - but there are also some decidedly smart snippets of humour within this episode as well.  If nothing else, this show has the average Internet conversation nailed, with a request from one of the girls for some pointers on driving a tank veering between "Google it you idiot" and "start by taking off all your clothes..."  It's these little moments that add another dimension to the show at this juncture, and although I'm not sure whether its idea has the legs required to last the whole series as it currently stands I'm still enjoying it thus far, meaning that I might have to make tracks if it proves me wrong.

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