After all the high drama of the first five episodes, we get a more relaxing outing looking at daily life in Juda.
What They Say
Kouichi becomes a member of JUDA, and starts his duties while commuting to school from JUDA quarters. He is overwhelmed by the JUDA facilities, which include employees' housing and shopping malls. The members of the Special Task Force decide to throw a welcome party for Kouichi, who gradually comes to understand his true mission...
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
After thinking that the last episode was the downtime after the storm, it would appear I was wrong and, in fact, this episode is said downtime. After a lot of drama, action and excitement (even in the last episode), this one is devoid of most of that and although it’s not necessarily a bad thing to have an episode that gives us a closer look at time in Juda, it just isn’t as engrossing as the past few episodes.
A part of the problem is the ongoing humour. The President has provided much of it so far, and in this episode he manages to put Kouichi in several compromising situations with the ladies of the company, and as such we see Kouichi rushed on a bed to the medical facility several times. While it’s funny the first time, by the fourth or so it gets a bit tiresome because you know what’s going to happen. At times I thought the show was becoming a harem comedy, as Emi keeps having reason to attack Kouichi for being a pervert (but again, it’s all set up by the President), be it looking at videos of her naked or being in a suspect situation with the twins.
There’s not a great deal of story to talk about either, because little of significance actually happens. We get to see the inner workings of Juda and find out a few factoids about how they work, such as not having to actually spend money at the shopping mall, but it’s all pretty weak considering the pace the plot has been moving at so far. The most significant moment in terms of the story was a nice scene with Risako and Kouichi visiting Yajima’s grave. Kouichi tells her that everything was his fault, and now he wants to live up to his expectations. It is a nice little scene that shows how far Kouichi has come, and it would have been nice to see more like these dispersed throughout the comedy we got.
But it isn’t all doom and gloom, even if the review thus far sounds harsh. The core thing about Linebarrels of Iron that can carry even a lower-par episode like this is the characters. Even after such a short time, they still shine through and seeing Emi, the twins, Kouichi, even the President roaming around Juda HQ and putting on a ridiculous performance for Kouichi’s party is still fun just because of them. From the twins forgetting what they were even supposed to do to Emi asking for Kouichi’s help, and proceeding to try to saw him in half with a chainsaw, the episode remains worth watching because the characters themselves are fun.
This episode of Linebarrels is light and fluffy, going for humour over the drama and tragedy of the past few episodes. While everyone probably needed a bit of a break before the heavy hitting begins again, it would’ve been nice to see a bit more substance rather than so much slightly repetitive and at times silly humour. Nevertheless, the characters make this show worth watching and that remains so even during an episode like this, so I’ll continue to give it a recommendation, so long as it picks itself back up next time.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
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