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Sunday, December 25, 2005

Mai Otome | Episode 12 | Masquerade

Episode Contents
Picking up where we left off last week Mashiro and the "real" prince Takumi enjoy time together while Akira impersonates Takumi to fill his place, and Arika is ordered to impersonate Mashiro. So we have the farcical situation going on where neither side knows the respective prince and princess from the other side is missing as both sides are bluffing. All rather clever and a nice comic touch.

Akira is taken on a tour of the kingdom with the rather uncomfortable Arika buy her side all the while thinking Akira is a he. Nina acts as "Arika Yumemiya Otome to the Queen" and Sergey, Natsuki, Shizuru, Aoi and the rest of the Otome do their best to keep up the pretence that things have all gone rather wrong. Aoi in particular is funny here dashing about to cover up posters of Mashiro. Shizuru using her gaydar, *coughs* I mean radar that detects all females in a 500 mile radius, notices that Akira is female and suspects foul play rather than what is really going on, confronting her (in a somewhat suggestive fashion). This results in Akira going all "ninja" throwing smoke bombs , donning a face mask and looking incredibly cool into the bargain as she flees the castle with Shizuru, Arika and Nina in Otome form in pursuit.

The rather flash Ariel battle continues for sometime until Akira spots Mashiro and Takumi and rushes towards them from the sky with the others in hot pursuit. Once some vague order has been restored Akira (whom the Otome bar Shizuru seem to think is male) helps Takumi who is suddenly looking rather pale by giving him some medicine in a way that is probably not listed in medical journals (see picture below).

After everything is reorganized and made clear, the real prince Takumi speaks to Natsuki about his fear of the power of Otome. And mentions something tragic that happened to an Otome. This Otome would be *drumroll* Mai! Who we see Natsuki looking at a picture of? What happened to Mai? Did she die? Did she vanish? Did she turn evil? Find out eventually on Mai Otome, but not next week as its Kazu and Akane's episode, which can only end in tears...

Other Episode Highlights/Key Points
- Arika blushes from head to toe from a kiss on the hand by Akira.
- Nina knows that Arika and Mashiro has a pact, but promises not to tell if Arika forgets Nina's tendency to letch over her own foster-father.
- Chie and Aoi moment that actually involves dialogue and the obligatory blue rose! I'd mention how cool Chie is if I hadn't mentioned how cool she was in every episode she's been in! Oops..
- Nao reveals her less than noble and even somewhat sinister motives for being an Otome, is it evil Nao time?
- Shizuru makes a rather poniant political statement, which I thought was rather cool!
- Mashiro evidently feels like she's falling for Takumi and is upset with Akira's evident affection for him.
- Mashiro's dream is possibly the funniest moment of the episode, has to be seen to be believed.
- Akira posses Otome like powers without using the Otome technology both she and Takumi seem to vermently against.

A very fast, slick and entertaining episode. Takumi seems a bit too wet for me to really like him as a character, but Akira steals the show here with her skills. The plot moves on steadily here too with revelations aplenty, and with some better ChieXAoi than an ambiguous wink, I'm very pleased with this episode overall!


posted by Mangaminx On Sunday, December 25, 2005  
  • On Sunday, 25 December, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Good review, and I agree with you on your positive assessment of this episode. I kinda fear soon the plot will take a less playful tone, and that next episode will be the turning point, so it's nice to have so much fun while we can.

  • On Monday, 26 December, 2005, Blogger Mangaminx said…

    I agree with you that the series is guarenteed to take a darker tone as the next episode appears. I'm sure the plot will begin to develop at a speedy rate rather soonish.

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