The impending return of Yoshihiko has everyone on edge and the need for a whole lot of kissing pacts to happen.
What They Say:
The Return of the General
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The tension among the girls has been amusing as of late now that they've figured out what Muneakira creates through the pact and allowing them to become master samurai's upon kissing. There's a need to get the rest of the team on board with things and kiss him so they can be prepared for when Sen's older brother Yoshihiko arrives back from France. This is problematic since there are plenty of social issues with requesting a kiss even in this form. Gisen however has the best idea in that he should just demand the kisses because of his position and be done with it. Having her offer up her entire body for kiss practice is the icing on the cake.
Everything is all done in good fun at first, but things start turning more serious when Gisen determines that playtime is over and makes a drastic change to Muneakira's personality in order to further her own plans. Even worse is that there are people attacking the dojo and surrounding area in order to secure what Gisen is doing. It's intriguing that she's got a lot more planned here on her part but was willing to let the charade go on for awhile where Muneakira could kiss them one by one to make the pact. But events are moving forward in a way that really requires more assertive action in order to serve her general. And we get the really interesting revelation that if Gisen makes a pact with Muneakira, it'll eliminate the one he has with Jubei and return her to another state.
Samurai Girls does throw us a potential curveball in that certain things we have been lead to believe may not actually be true. The introduction of Yoshihiko back in Japan, early at that, shows that there are layers here that even Sen may not be aware of. His plans are coming to fruition now that others are making their moves and he's ready to push it forward. Yoshihiko brings in a different male element than Muneakira does, assertive and in control in a different way, but he also brings an able bodied French style warrior in Nia who has a great two swords approach and some amusing costume design that really sets her apart from everyone else in Japan. So much of what we've focused on has been Japan and the oncoming threat that starting to see what else is really involved helps the show come together even better.
Samurai Girls introduces a lot more back story to the series with this episode and it shakes up a lot of what's going on. While we've been lead to believe certain things, as this episode shows us there are other ways of looking at it and other plans afoot. While Yoshihiko may be trying to show himself in a different light, certainly not as a humble savior, there are some things to what he's doing that fits perfectly with the position and mindset. The show does start off with a good bit of fun and it turns in an interesting way only to be upended. Episodes like this are fun since it throws a lot at you and you can't be sure who's really telling the truth anymore and have to follow all the paths to get to the real truth. With only a few episodes to go, I don't have high hopes for a really strong ending, but it looks like it will be fun.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.