Friday, 25 January 2013

Vividred Operation - Episode 3

Fighting aliens is all good and well, but it also comes with its downsides - namely, when said alien destroys your school entirely.

Still, life isn't so bad when you have a new school to attend with a dress code that requires the wearing of figure-hugging shorts at all times, and thus Akane and company set off for their first day with some excitement... or at least, they would if Akane wasn't running late.  Solving this problem seems simple enough - simply use her "Vivid System" to make up for lost time - but as the military's best-kept secret she soon blows her cover by running into kendo ace Wakaba Saegusa, who wastes no time in attacking her as an intruder.

Although Akane manages to fend off Wakaba, this is only the beginning of her problems - defeating Wakaba has only left her thirsty for a rematch with the mysterious girl who confronted her, and what's more Wakaba is actually the class representative of the class Akane is about to join.  It's hard for Akane to hide her identity, and Saegusa's insistence that she wants to challenge the girl who defeated her doesn't help matters.  Still, sometimes friendship can be born from rivalry, and the appearance of another Alone makes this all-but a necessity.

Having won me over utterly last week, this third instalment of Vividred Operation failed to live up to the expectations set by that episode, perhaps inevitably - the need to set up a new character was inevitably going to take us away from the action, and on the flip side of this the episode seemed even more determined to give us time to ponder how the various girls look in tight shorts.  Conversely, some moments of the episode also felt rushed - Akane's switch from hiding her identity to confronting Wakaba without a care in the world was rather too swift, and Saegusa's knowledge of how to use the Vivid System and Docking was baffling without any context to assure us that it had been explained to her.  Still, the episode looked pretty polished, and the previous instalment showed us what the series can do, so even at a lower ebb such as this one it's still a pretty watchable affair.  Hopefully its Strike Witches comparisons won't extend to only tackling action scenes at the end of each episode, as I'm not sure the wider story or its characters are ready to support that.

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