Score: A-

This episode was a nice chance to ease into the situation while maintaining the action that is just going to be a steady part of the series. We got a decent amount of background with Sensei activating the Shittim Chest and learning about how things steadily went bad for Abydos as a district. The focus of the episode of course was about winning the trust of Serika. But along the way the episode did show us how people are trying to handle the situation they find themselves in here. I can hardly speak for people experiencing this setting for the first time, but I’m feeling good about where this episode went.

A handy little AI

We’ve only gotten a slight understanding of what Arona and the chest is capable of. But it’s definitely a valuable tool. Being able to access all that information at a moment’s notice is a lot of power to hand to anyone. A request that could have taken hours or more only needed a few seconds before Arona could provide Serika’s exact and active location. Of course it’s a huge benefit that the gang didn’t dump her phone or anything like that. But you need a bit of good fortune in a situation like this. What’s clear is that Sensei has some extreme authority and can get things done without the usual red tape. That in itself could lead to criticism and complaints within the setting, but in this case it’s a huge benefit.

Cute uniform she’s got

I think Serika was a solid choice for a student being hesitant about accepting help. It would be a bit too easy if everyone was just ok with this. They have been suffering through the Abydos situation by themselves. That’s a pretty heavy and serious thing. In some ways suffering almost becomes a possessive sort of thing. There’s a sense of ownership over it and letting others just swoop in might feel a bit uncomfortable. And since Serika is a strong tsundere that sort of frustration would be expressed far more openly!

That just made it even more fun to see Sensei and the girls work on closing that gap. Persistence wasn’t doing much, but the visit to her part time job did some good work! The important thing at times is getting views from people you trust. And with Serika’s boss and friend telling her it was ok…that did allow her views to soften up a bit. Didn’t hurt of course that she got captured soon after. Nothing quite like the emotional shakeup of a situation like that to make a person more welcoming to those that came to the rescue! Hardly the plan, but no question that it worked out nicely.

A bit more involved teamwork this week

This episode at least felt more like Sensei was providing tactical plans compared to the Pokemon trainer approach of episode 1. It did help that they cut out the explanations so everything could sound like part of his plan. But I’m fine with that. It’d be a waste of screentime to have him talk about the whole plan and then spend even more time seeing it play out as described.

It’s nice that Serika got to play a starring role in her own rescue mission. She came through when needed and just having her follow the plan without arguing about it was effective enough in showing her growth. Though I still think my favourite part of this whole action sequence was Shiroko busting out her drone and delivering some good missile strikes! But it was a team mission overall. Even Ayane played a key role in dropping the explosives into the right position to line up with Serika’s shot. Nothing too crazy or beyond the norm here. But I think this sort of things is just comfortably enjoyable.

I like the loading screen

One interesting part of the episode for me was visiting inside the Shittim Chest. Arona isn’t just some AI that’s seen through a screen, but a character that Sensei can actively interact with. It’s a bit unclear if he’s just accessing it in his mind while standing absentmindedly or not, but it’s a nice way to build a closer connection with Arona as a character.

I also really enjoy how Arona’s halo changes so much depending on her mental state. Same goes for the sound effect you can hear in the background when their halos are activating. Turning off while they sleep and activating upon gaining consciousness. It’s a strange system and a curiosity for sure.

Expecting to see more of this group

Episode wrapped up with a look at some characters that seem like definite problem makers! Makes sense that the story needs to add more characters. The helmet gang have been a good source of fun for beating up. But there is always a need for a bit more challenge to push the cast a bit harder and there’s just a need for more interesting characters to interact with. But that’s something to think about if they show up in the next episode. For now, the show has established the current situation in Abydos and is touching on Sensei’s overall authority in that setting. But it’s only revealing bits and pieces. We’ll have to see how far the third episode takes things.

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An older member at 25, yet a new addition to Anime Evo. Recently graduating University and in the difficult point between school and a true career. Anime being a salvation and blogging a good way to put all those hours of writing essays to some use. Enjoys talking about series, yet not taking on so many that the quality dips. A Canadian who enjoys his anime and hearing what others think about the series he enjoys watching.

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