England's nature continues to be a dominant piece of the puzzle here.
What They Say:
In today's fashion-centric episode, England is uncomfortable with France's willingness to dress in girly clothes. Later, England's awkward feelings only multiply when codpieces come into style.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
It's not easy being England, especially when you have someone like France near you that's really outgoing and pretty effeminate at times as well. France continues to be the older type that's out experiencing life and bragging about it while telling England he's such a child. It's very cute how France is all dolled up in a dress, hair blowing in the wind, just after we see England complaining about his inability to grow his hair out. Chastising France for his clothing choices doesn't go all that well, especially since France has a dress in England's size in his hands a very particular grin to his face.
The fashion side of the series is pretty strong here as we spend a good part of the episode in the 11th century but also show how things have changed over the centuries, going right up to the 1990's with the long hair. France is positively amusing with this as he laughs and prances about and gets praise from the Spanish side of the story at the same time. England really wants to be on the right side of trends though so seeing him sneak into France to get a look at things only leads him to more problems as he discovers the introducing of codpieces as a form of style. You really have to feel for poor England as he goes through this, which explains a lot of his more neurotic aspects later in life.
Hetalia spends some nice time with the big players from the first season though it is largely back in the 11th century. The interplay between France and England has been one of the more enjoyable parts of the series and this one builds on the whole hair-length story element that had been dealt with previously. They take it a little further here to good effect, mellow as it is, with France pushing England in directions he really doesn't want to go. There's a number of very good small moments here and it ends perfectly with the whole gag about codpieces. This is one of those episodes that leaves you smiling and giggling a little.
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.