Who knew that listening to a bland pop singing group could turn you into a murderous rebel against the government. Fortunately, today's pop music has no such power... other than to make one want to puke at times.
What They Say
Towards the end of the Han Dynasty, the world is in the throes of chaos and disorder.
In a time when strength is needed, a hero is secretly sharpening her skills as a warrior of justice: her name is Kan'u Unchou. Kan'u will put her life on the line, test her strength and power, fighting to protect those in need. Together with Chouhi Ekitoku, they make a vow as sisters to forge down this path of justice, awaiting whatever fate has in store for them...
Now in SHIN KOIHIME MUSO, Kan'u and Chouhi explode into battle as they must again stand up and fight for peace during these turbulent times. Together they set out to assemble their team of warriors, eyes to the horizon and the many battles and adventures that awaits for them up ahead!
Episode 11: Bachou Tries to Hold It In
Episode 12: The General's Attempt to Suppress the Yellow Turban Rebellion
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
So, the Yellow Turbans have done it now. When a local official tried to stop their last concert, they turned the crowd against the official, but because of their lack of knowledge about the magic book they have, they did not realize the crowd would not just turn against one official, but against all officials, sparking a minor revolt in the town. Things look bad, as now they are wanted criminals. The sisters debate what the do next, and they decide that if you've already started down the garden path, you might as well continue. They will try to gather even more supporters, hoping to make themselves too large a target for the weak central government to want to suppress.
Then we move to the real action: which is watching Batai, Bachou's cousin, accompanied by little Riri, sneak into Bachou's room to see how she wakes up. After some obvious breast jealousy humor (Bachou is blessed with more than Batai), Batai then moves on to see if Bachou has wet herself in bed.
Yes, this is the level of humor we are getting this episode.
At least we get a good number of Bachou panty shots. Many of them occurring in the midst of Bachou's training of Batai, which involves some of the strangest strength and stamina training exercises thought up of by man or woman. And yes, we get the title from a later event, when Batai challenges Bachou to a very stupid feat of containment: can she drink a huge jar of water (one larger than herself) and then "hold it in" until dinnertime, not using the bathroom before then. This is taking bathroom humor a step too far.
And just when I thought the joke was getting bad, they take it to a whole new level during the dinner that follows, a large feast, since it happens that Kan'u and friends now show up, having returned from their journey. Ironic that I just had fish for lunch today, hopefully not from that stream...
And then, the plot kicks in, as an order has come from the Lesbian Generalissima Sousou: the Government has ordered the suppression of the Yellow Turbans, and she has asked Kan'u to bring her army to join the main force under her command. So, the army gathers...
In the finale episode (marked off by a dramatic scene of the council of war, and no opening animation or song), it seems that the writers decided to get incredibly serious. The strategists confer and the situation is set out: the Chou Sisters have gathered tens of thousands of supporters, who are now encamped around their central stage. Sousou has gathered a large army and is preparing to suppress the rebellion. It looks like it will be necessary to eliminate the three Chou Sisters. Ryuubi, bless her bleeding heart and giant breasts, tearfully says that this can't be the only option, there has to be another way. Things are made difficult by the fact that the Chou Sisters are being controlled by that magic book, the "Crucial Keys." Kada (remember him, the magician doctor who fixed Chouhi's stomach ache several episodes back, while getting Sousou enraged at him for his suggested cure for constipation) has reappeared and told them about the Chou Sisters having the book.
And so, they prepare for a full scale assault...or maybe not. Instead, they are going to counter one bunch of pop singers with another. Enjutsu (remember her? Enshou's annoying cousin who had possession of Ryuubi's sword is also present at the camp, since it was an Imperial Order to suppress the rebels) apparently is a talented singer, and so they plan to form an opposing pop group to try to divert the supporters of the Chou Sisters.
The concert battle is amusing enough, of course in the end we get an excuse for all of the girls to sing to their hearts' content. The Chou Sisters, especially the eldest one, Tenhou, no longer wish to fight, and so they surrender. The magic book is about to be sealed away, when the magician who gave it to the Chou sisters in the first place, Ukitsu, appears and takes it away. So, the mission to seal the book is a failure, though the rebellion has been crushed.
And thus ends the plot. The Chou Sisters are sentenced to becoming the morale boosters (by giving free concerts) for the former Yellow Turban rebels, who are now going to be employed by Sousou as both farm labor and a potential pool of army recruits to increase the power of the Lesbian Army (only the leadership are lesbians, the actual soldiers seem to be men). And thus ends this season of Koihime Musou.
The second season of Koihime Musou (while it is called "New" Koihime Musou, it is not a retelling, but a continuation of the first season) basically follows the path laid out by the first: show lots of appealing female character designs of various types (from nearly flat chested to incredibly over..."endowed, slender to voluptuous, lolita to more mature), have them take frequent baths or show their panties often, and throw in a good measure of breast jiggling. Ta-da! You have yourself a show. The attempt in the final episode to have a semi-serious plot, based upon a historical event (the Yellow Turban Rebellion was real) that looms large in the original source material, the "Romance of the Three Kingdoms" novel, was amusing in how they re-imagined it (the real rebellion was put down rather bloodily). There is not much else to say about this show. If you are looking for action and fighting set in the period of the Three Kingdoms...go play the games in the Dynasty Warriors franchise. If you want to see a mixed group of cute and/or hot girls taking baths and occasionally playing soldier, in a setting that is vaguely reminiscent of late Han Dynasty China, then this is the show for you.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Apple Mac Mini with 1GB RAM, Mac OS 10.5 Leopard