There’s not an easy way to put this – I just haven’t been as into anime lately. Aside from Yaiba which finished out this week (excellently, I might add) and Ousama Ranking, I find myself frequently falling behind or skipping through episodes I otherwise would have enjoyed. Maybe I’m just getting old -maybe this just isn’t the best season. No matter my complaints, Ousama Ranking’s latest trio of episodes – which have taken me so long to write about – are certainly doing their part to keep the flame alive.
One major complaint before we get started: Bojji doesn’t seem very deaf. His flashback to Miranjo wouldn’t have been triggered, unless he could hear her name. There have been other combat related instances where it seems he isn’t deaf (he’s dodging unseeable projectiles while not being able to hear? Come on). It feels to me that the author started off with that premise then realized halfway how limiting it makes the character and story – so it’s now gone to the wayside. I’m going to just pretend that Bojji isn’t deaf and the problem is fixed. Just a little annoying to have such a crusade about overcoming disabilities, then cheat on the implementation.
These three are not light episodes. There are two main tragedies here: the Underworld royal family and the Gigantes mistreatment. Let’s start with the underworld family (also first we’ve seen of the gods) – it was mentioned before that the brothers overthrew their father, but wow. Seems like Bosse isn’t the only one concerned with immortality. My hunch – the mechanic is sacrificing a family member to cheat death: Bosse has taken Daida (and half of Bojji), also it looks to me like Ouken is the one who killed his father. Regardless, it makes the dynamic between the underworld brothers quite a bit more interesting, especially considering the problematic family members and all they’ve had to do to overcome their atrocities. It also explains why Desper suggests having Bojji take care of Bosse like it’s no issue – it’s what he and his brothers did. Also, how overpowered is Desper by the way? The Underworld guards should have been invincible with his training.
That brings us to the Gigantes. War is an ugly thing, and Ousama Ranking doesn’t shy away from the ends justifying the means. It’s no secret that your allies are sometimes your biggest problems, and Desper throwing up when faced with the realities landed the gut punch. Definitely a tragedy, but I’m glad Gigan got some small redemption for his people. Maybe Kage will get some as well (it’s hinted with the use of the Shadow Clan corpses to open the Underworld portal).
Finally – Miranjo. One question that stood out to me: what was the deal with the Gigante archers shooting at Bojji + Mom? She’s definitely shaping up to be a more complicated character – it’s also strangely heartwarming to see Daida guarding her in the mirror. I’m pretty sure she’s controlling the rat to get Hiling to heal Apis…that’s a little unsporting, since Miranjo’s trying to kill her, don’t you think? Apis explaining her motives has me a bit concerned – she’s willing to kill everyone (and burn down a kingdom) to go on another adventure with Bosse? Uh….sounds a bit crazy to me.
P.S. how great was that cheap shot?! Even better that it was on Dormas.
I’ll keep this conclusion simple: Ousama Ranking has maintained its quality, in both animation and story-telling; it’s a top tier show on the year. I’m the one who isn’t keeping up – I think it’s very likely I limp out the season with every other week coverage. Which is the best I can do at the moment, but it’s not what a series this good deserves.