Rana has fully arrived at the academy and nothing will be the same after that. I mean, she smiles. Nobody else here does that.
What They Say:
A manipulative upperclassman uses Rana and Satellizer's mutual affection for Kazuya to lure the two powerful Pandoras into a blood-spilling, clothes-shredding fight to the death!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The arrival of Rana to the school adds a different type of character to the show as she's pretty outgoing, smiling and there with a mission that at first doesn't seem to revolve around taking down the unbeatable queen of Satellizer. Her showing up in the previous episode gave her a nice in with Kazuya though and made things a little more problematic between him and Bridget since she's seemingly making a play of sorts for him. While she's very outgoing and smiling, it belies who she really is as Kazuya relates the tale of how she brutally worked over a Limiter before which caused her to be suspended for a year prior to coming here. With the pretty exterior, there's a brutal interior that could appear at any point.
Rana's certainly making her play for Kazuya in a very open way, such as when she essentially crawls all over him during lunch break in the cafeteria. Kazuya is rather put off by it, wanting to keep things formal and referring to her properly as an upperclassman, but Rana is very intent on nuzzling into him, much to the distaste of Bridget who catches her slathering herself all over him. Rana has made enough of an impression on Bridget though that she does what she can in her stilted way to get Kazuya to be more familiar with her, such as shortening her name to Satelli and having lunch together on the roof. It's cute but at the same time it feels off for someone like Bridget to act this way.
Little surprise that this back and forth is noticed outside of the trio as Attia sees an opportunity here and steps in to set up the two young women to go against each other in heated combat. There is a strong way to do this since Kazuya hasn't gone through the baptism and stigmata aspect of pairing with someone like Bridget and the lack of that makes their pairing unusual. It also gives Rana the opening she needs to make a more forceful play for Kazuya, though Attia's manipulations, which leads to a fight scene that actually doesn't take place at sunset. Or outdoors. It's lit more brightly than other fight scenes have been but it still has a kind of hazy feel to it that's really off-putting. The fight itself is actually quite good though, no surprise considering previous fights, and while it gets a little too cruel and sexual at times with the outfits, it does cement the way these two feel about the situation and shows just how far they'll fight.
Freezing does move things forward a bit here as it cements the relationship that Kazuya has with Bridget but it also points out just how easily it can be viewed and manipulated by those outside of it. While those two certainly have an understanding that works, others can take advantage of it rather easily and even Rana gets taken in by it. There are some slow moments to be had here but the winning fun is the action sequence in the last quarter and watching how Rana does her best to seduce Kazuya in public. Extra points for Bridget though as she tries her best to be outgoing and such with Kazuya by buying him lunch. It's cute, but she's a character that simply doesn't do cute well.
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.