So, now we come to the big fight, well, maybe. It could also be time for a nice quiet walk into the Palace, where everyone has tea! Okay, maybe not.
What They Say
During the last years of Han Dynasty, the world was filled with chaos and disorder. Three girls, Ryubi, Kan'u, and Chohi pledge to be blood-sisters in order to settle this world. After overcoming many hardships, they were finally able to bring back peace. However, a new evil creeps into their momentary peace. The battles of Muso girls are about to start once again.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
So, we begin with a little summary from a hooded figure (why? Well, whatever), who gives the history (somewhat) of the later Han at its end, with power being seized by the 10 eunuchs led by Choujou, and then passing to Toutaku, only to have a coalition of warlords led by Enshou march upon the capital of Rakuyou (should be Luoyang).
So the fighting begins, with Ryofu, the greatest warrior in the land (and fan of cute animals), holding off the entire army of the coalition outside the gates of the first fortress that protects the capital. This being Koihime, we don't see any fighting, but are just told about it. But the war is taking a psychological toll on Ryofu, which in turn upsets her sidekick Chinkyuu. Chinkyuu then takes it upon herself to go and visit the enemy camp, speaking to Sousou, Sonsaku, Kousonsan, and the others (which includes Ryuubi and Kan'u). There, Chinkyuu says that Toutaku is being held captive by Choujou. The generals at first don't entirely believe her, but Chouhi throws a fit, blabbering something about a true lord recognizing genuine tears and such.
Anyway, it is decided to sneak a spy in to see if they can locate Toutaku. Fortunately, they have someone along who knows the Palace well: Kashin (still in cat ear mode). The Son family will provide the spy in the diminutive, but very capable, form of Shuutai, who will use an old escape tunnel to sneak into the Palace. Of course, after a very serious briefing, Shuutai asks if she can pet Kashin's ears (request denied).
Shuutai successfully penetrates the Palace, but the complex is very large, and it is difficult to locate Toutakou. It is also quite amazing how much stuff she is able to cram into her clothing while maintaining a slim figure. Back at the camp, they need to turn to a new stratagem in order to confuse the enemy. Koumei, as usual, comes up with a rather elaborate plan, involving a mannequin of Toutakou, and the report that the Toutaku being held by Choujou is a fake, a piglet transformed by magic.
All an elaborate plan, of course, to get Choujou to reveal the location of the true Toutaku, whom he is holding captive. The plan works, as Choujou goes to check on Toutakou, while Shuutai watches where the hidden passageway is. Shuutai then goes to see Kaku, Toutakou's chief strategist, while she is powdering her nose. Shuutai tells Kaku the details of her escape plan, and the next morning spirits Toutakou from her cell.
Choujou is in a rage over the escape, but Ukitsu tells him not to worry, since the magic book, the Crucial Keys, has been charged enough and is ready to use. Of course, he also mentions that it's the end of the road for Choujou as well, since Ukitsu was just using the eunuch (well, obviously). Choujou is forced by Ukitsu's magic to drink a potion that turns him into a rat, which is fitting, but obviously Ukitsu is not a good guy either. The stage seems to be set for Ukitsu to carry out his nefarious plan.
While we should have been given some one-on-one fighting scenes, instead we have lots of off the battlefield action, as the coalition of Sousou, Sonsaku, Kousonsan and others (interestingly, Enshou and the En family in general seem to be holding back in the rear) plot to infiltrate the Palace and free Toutaku, whom they have learned is not really in control, but is instead being held captive by the eunuch Choujou. The plan to free Toutaku succeeds, but the real enemy is now prepared to move, with Choujou being thrust aside and the magic book from last season ready now to wreak havoc.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Apple Mac Mini with 1GB RAM, Mac OS 10.5 Leopard