Binbougami Ga! – 09 & 10

I’m scared of Bobby’s special attack…

Binbougami Ga! felt like a tale of two very different episodes in the past two weeks. Each did highlight great aspects of the show such as comedy and the characters but episode nine was far more enjoyable than this weeks! I want to say sorry to all the readers for the late posts as I was a bit busy with school starting again. I work in college administration so its a hectic time for me! I promise I will be punctual from now on!

Episode 9 : A Tennis Match of Extreme Proportions!

This outing of Binbougami Ga! is mildly deceiving. What seems to be a strictly humorous exercise hides a considerable amount of depth and development. Underneath the veneer of gags and jokes the friendship between Momiji and Sakura begins to take root and become something substantial.

Don’t worry; there are no tear-ridden, heart-felt exchanges or soul wrenching dialogue. Their friendship is taking shape in classic Binbougami Ga! fashion, with  vicious spirit animals, shattered windows and a tennis match that nearly destroys the gym (and the spirit of two young boys). To my delight we get to see the horny priest and Momou after a few weeks albeit for a single scene where they are running behind a squad of girls in gym class.

 Playing Doubles For Life!

After being heavily featured in the past two episodes, Ranmaru has taken a backseat. Her crush on Keita has been cemented and sets up the foundation for a battle royale over his heart between her and Ichiko. It seems a bit clichéd at first, using Ichiko’s previous friendship as a parallel for the impending conflict, but I am intrigued to see how the creators handle it. Ms.Sakura has proven to be a very delicate character so her finding out about Ranmaru’s infatuation might have some unexpected results.

One of my fears did come to bear in this episode: the introduction of a new Binbougami. Luckily she was quickly dealt with and promptly exited the script. I was worried that a shift in the series focus from building relationships to a conflict with a clear villain would take away from both comedy and the better dramatic elements. If the two female leads were ever forced to be on the same ‘team’, I feel that their dynamic would be compromised and their relationship would seem contrived. I prefer the natural growth that the story has opted for so far.

The New Binbougami

But the new Binbougami did have her charm like most of the supporting cast. It’s sad to see that she didn’t exactly make the cut long term, but the series just doesn’t have room for another crew member. Many of these larger than life personalities take up so much screen time.

Episode 10 : The Cat Became a Goddess?!?!

Bobby and Momou return for an actual speaking role! I have been waiting for them to come back for a while now! The two make a comeback with a sledgehammer in tow ready to shatter the fourth wall. It’s a fun scene where Bobby exclaims he would be a better female protagonist… I hope the producers don’t open pandora’s box and create a show where the horny priest is a cross dressing protagonist.

This week Ichiko finally takes a step towards protecting those around her by containing her fortune. Instead reacting to the misfortune her luck creates for her loved ones, she’s finally actively trying to fix the situation.

I just wish this development was catalyzed by a member of the cast and not some random cat Ichiko found at the beginning of the show. As a viewer I don’ have any emotional investment in the kitten even though she is quite cute. I understand that I might be a bit biased considering that I am a dog person… But lets just ignore that fact for now.

She is kinda cute…

Ranmaru and Momiji would have been better hooks to make us believe the change. Hell, even Suwano would have sufficed even though he hasn’t be in the show since the first episode. It’s because I understand the relationships she has with those characters. They have been around and have some chemistry with the female lead. At the end of the day, it feels like a missed storytelling opportunity.

Episode ten left an awkward impression. Between shattering the fourth wall and the random omakes, it tried to fit an emotional stepping stone in Ichiko’s growth. None of the careful pacing in the last two episodes mattered where because of the story much of the humor had to take a backseat.  It’s as if the show was going through comedic withdrawal, letting out all the jokes it didn’t have an opportunity to say.

The Ichiko Strike Force is after me for my negative comments!

While the moments here are funny they seemed unnecessary because they drowned out the plot. I know the shift towards more melodramatic elements has had a polarizing effect on fans of the show but I for one enjoyed them. I love the company of Ichiko and Momiji so naturally I’d like to know more about them. Considering that there were already issues with the storytelling elements  in those sections the comedy becomes all the more suffocating.

Final Thoughts

Honestly the roller coaster in quality has become the norm for this show. I can say that I do really enjoy the characters but not all of the storytelling decisions that the writers make. I hope all of the series disparate ideas come together in a stunning conclusion that blows all my negative feelings out of the water. Until next week!


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6 Responses to “Binbougami Ga! – 09 & 10”

  1. HannoX says:

    The tennis match was hilarious, particularly the penalties their male team mates would have to pay, and the boys’ reactions to that! This show is at its best when Ichiko and Momiji are fighting. And it’s through their fights that they are unwittingly growing closer.

    I liked the kitten, but then I’m a cat person. I think it made sense that Ichiko contained her fortune to try and save the kitten, rather than a person. Remember, she has a real issue about trusting others apart from Suwano. But a kitten you don’t have to worry about betraying you. And I’d think it would take less of her fortune to save a cat (even though it temporarily turned into a goddess) than a person. This is a reasonable first step in Ichiko surrendering some of her fortune for another and in her character development. Later she can make a major sacrifice of her fortune to save a person and then it’ll seem like a logical progression rather than coming pretty much out of the blue.

    • HannoX says:

      Oh, and there might be some cultural subtext here as well. Remember, in Japan the beckoning cat is a symbol of good fortune.

      • Sushi says:

        Ah I see that could work if its done well. My problem is that she seems like such a selfish person that her helping out a relative newcomer seems like a leap of faith itself. I don’t know there’s a lot of things this show does right, maybe it knows better than me!

        • HannoX says:

          Yes, it’s a leap of faith, but seems like a small one. A small one is a more logical first step than a major one, which I think sacrificing for another person would be. Maybe it’s because you’re a dog person you can’t see her sacrificing for a kitten she’s only had for a week. Imagine it was a small, very cute puppy instead.

          • HannoX says:

            Oh, and let’s remember the kitten was abandoned. Ichiko was essentially abandoned by her parents and by her best “friend.” Even Suwano has left her. She probably doesn’t realize it herself, but deep down she feels a connection to the kitten since both were abandoned.

            Later she will come to realize that Momiji and Ranmaru are sticking with her, whatever Momiji’s motivation is at present.

  2. BlackBriar says:

    The tennis game was awesome. They always manage to turn something into a near death match and those two pitiful guys got caught in it. Well, better them than me.

    I’m getting déjà vu. The part with Ranmaru and Tsuwabuki cutting the wedding cake. I saw something very similar in Mirai Nikki. What a coincidence.

    My god! And I thought Kore wa Zombie’s Seraphim had horrible cooking skills. At least her “food” had color. I wouldn’t eat any food made by Ichiko even if my life depended on it.

    The funniest part is that they’ve suddenly figured out they’re in a show. Who let the cat out of the bag?

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