Masou Gakuen HxH – 03

HeartxHybrid - she tries so hard

Hayuru gets embarrassed well

winter15-highw I think we’ve got a show here that maybe just lines up super good with my expectations and biases.

Stepping Back a Moment

HeartxHybrid - Yurishia doesn't beat around the bush

Yurishia’s all about the sneaky date

I’m going to give Masou Gakuen credit here for something odd, and that’s not really doing anything. We had two episodes where they fought some of the invaders, including MechaPokemon, and this episode decided to pull that back and go for mostly just character development. We had a short bit with everyone in their battle outfit fighting, essentially, some drones, which was mostly show-off time, but the rest of the episode was mostly background, conversations between characters, and then the big dark reveal. But we’ll get to that bit later.

HeartxHybrid - A deceitful smile

That’s a pretty deceptive smile

Aine came back as the girl in charge this episode, turning her tsuntsun levels up to an 8 or so as Kizuna tried to praise her. She’s definitely prickly, and we get what seems to be her entire backstory this episode, as Reiri explains that she was a girl found abandoned in the Chidorigafuchi section of Tokyo who they could never learn more about. She was then ‘adopted’ by Nayuta Hida (the not-so-stellar mother of Reiri and Kizuna) as a test subject for the Heart Hybrid gear, then abandoned again when Nayuta disappeared from the lab. So she doesn’t have much in the way of a background or an idea of who she should be, so she’s made her entire purpose fighting and getting stronger. And because of that, she tries to get some action with Kizuna, in order to get her “Immoral Weapon” (right, because they have to call it something stupid).

Daaaaang girl, just drop it right in the conversation

The scene with Aine and Kizuna was, again, pulled off pretty well. I felt like it hit the right tone, mostly because of Kizuna’s character. Aine plies him with food, then drops the line “I’ve got one other thing I want you to eat…” I mean, as far as proposition lines go, that’s right up there. The scene keeps the right amount of levity to keep it from being too straightforward, even as Aine pretty much straight-up strips, with things like “I’ll bet there’s a pilot suit under… Nope! There isn’t!” And I think Kizuna’s hesitance was completely understandable, even as Aine wants to plow forward into the unknown. But what eventually stops him is the look on her face, that she really doesn’t seem to want to do this, even if she wants the results and claims to not care what she has to do. And throughout the scene, even when Kizuna can’t bring himself to go further, I think they portrayed the shame that Aine felt, first at feeling like she’s “losing” to Yurishia and Hayuru, and then at her rejection, both from Kizuna and her rejection of his desire to get to know her better (and while they made a good joke on the english subs about the ‘morning walk of shame’ in the last episode when Aine was really talking about yobai, they really captured the essence of the walk of shame here, I thought).

HeartxHybrid - just get it over with

Putting it all out there

HeartxHybrid - all shame

Aine’s shame and rejection

Danger, Will Robinson!

HeartxHybrid - familiar color scheme

Poor girl, and I think we’ve seen that color scheme before

The other important topic this episode was the consequences in the story. Every story that’s going to have a hero has to have some consequences if the hero fails. If there aren’t consequences, then there’s no tension. They’d already set up the world as one where there are the dimensional entrances and enemies coming from them, but “we have to save the world” is always a disappointing fulcrum. The stakes are just too big to expect high school kids to deal with. So what I thought was good was the introduction of what feels, at least right now, like it’s the real consequence in the show. And I think they managed to convey the information in a way that told us a couple of stories.

HeartxHybrid - she doesn't care

Cold and unashamed

So far the only things we’ve seen of Nayuta are a picture where she’s smiling, and her abandonment of Kizuna when he was little. So we didn’t really have much of an understanding of why Kizuna and Reiri refer to her as “that woman”. But the flashback, no sorry, the ‘archive’ they show us makes it clear that she’s completely heartless and solely concerned with her data. Forcing the death of a test subject, while they plead for their life, was a very effective way to show us her total disregard for the well-being of those around her, and certainly casts the picture of her smiling with her lab staff in a new light. And at the same time, the appearance of the test subject in the archive gives us a clue to the affiliation of the extra person we saw at the island in episode 2.

HeartxHybrid - Reiri's right reaction

“I’m surely going to hell for it.” A great realization of the weight of the situation


I feel like this revelation about the Hybrid count is actually a very good Macguffin for the show. The scope feels right: It’s an individual challenge, it’s got serious consequences for a person, but it’s not asking too much of a person to step up and fight it. I also liked that the show conveyed the personal turmoil that Reiri has put herself through in her knowledge of the dangers of low Hybrid counts. Perhaps she should have told the girls earlier, but we’ll see if they get told now. Kizuna seems to be the kind of person who would want to get that out in the open, but he’s kind of at the whim of the writer here. But even with that deadly consequence, I think you have to give credit to Reiri for how she’s trying to deal with it. She’s brought Kizuna in to try to help the situation, and she’s tried to stop Yurishia from fighting at a low Hybrid count. All while trying to do her ‘real’ job, which is protect people.

HeartxHybrid - Hayuru doesn't mess around

Maybe Hayuru’s not as far back as she might think

I’m probably a little more positive on this show than most people. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not arguing that it should be considered an awesome anime, or even one of the best ones of this young season. But what I am saying is that it’s doing what I want it to: Have a story, have characters that aren’t dumbasses or solely plot pawns, not make stupid mistakes, and – because it’s trying to be an almost H show – have those scenes be sexy and interesting, not “No, no, eww, nothing, Oh come on.” I think that the way Kizuna has been has helped with that, and also the way that especially Yurishia, with her date to the tourist spots on the megafloat with Kizuna, and Hayuru, with her earnest attempts to approach Kizuna without being indecent, have been characterized has provided a good counterpoint to Aine’s desperation.


Proving that you don't have to be young to love anime, I enjoy all genres and styles of shows. If it's not hurting anyone else, you should never be ashamed of what you like!
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9 Responses to “Masou Gakuen HxH – 03”

  1. Wanderer says:

    Interesting that they revealed the “Hybrid Gears eat your soul life point now. In the novels that’s volume 3 material. But it does raise the stakes and make what he’s doing somewhat more important. It also reveals more of Nayuta’s true nature sooner.

    in order to get her “Immoral Weapon” (right, because they have to call it something stupid).

    The LN translators went with “corruption armament” but that was probably more them trying to make it sound less stupid than what the author actually wrote. And it’s still not all that great.

    • Highway says:

      I don’t know what the circumstances are of the reveal later in the the LN, but to me it feels like a better thing to reveal here. Having them do a bunch of stuff, and then drop this “Oh yeah, you have to do this or you’ll DIE” seems like “I just thought of this great idea! I’ll stick it in now and raise the stakes!” I can understand that the mechanism they used to have the characters discover the information would also work later, it would just feel more like getting screwed by the writer rather than a natural reveal.

    • belatkuro says:

      The original word is 背徳武装. 背徳 can be translated as either ‘corruption’ or ‘immorality’. The former does sound cooler but given what this series is, the latter seems to fit more.

  2. skylion says:

    I still like the rather open metaphor the show puts off, “lets be more informed about sex, shall we? No..don’t lose your head over it…you can think and feel at the same time!”

    It almost makes sense in a way to keep the opposition pretty faceless, as they are going against the unknown.

    • Highway says:

      Maybe I hadn’t noticed it because that’s the way I expect and want attitudes about sex to be, but you’re right that Kizuna does not exhibit that terrible “Bruce Banner” attitude about it of “resist resist resist… lose control and now you can’t blame me for what happens”. There’s also no “she asked for it, so I’ll just go ahead no matter what her reaction is.” The longer they go with these things I consider the ‘right’ attitude, the more credibility the show will have with me.

  3. MR.KLAC says:

    well look like all say kizuna’s mother is so really going be “mother of the year” on it?

    indeed sure look kizuna’s mother doings

    1.have your own son be an experiment for it.
    2.give aine who have no memory of her past HxH armor.
    3.have test subject go all in on armor to reach 0 percent & “expired”.

    etc good grief if more mention of her “doing” what is she malcolm merlyn version of series?!

    back to series itself sure give kizuna bit time with each girls yet find out he have power-up them to keep them alive.

    yea this is 3rd ep what next to happen?

  4. Di Gi Kazune says:

    H Cup x H Cup Gakuen. ’nuff said.

  5. theirs says:

    I really thought Aine needs priority in knowing what happens when the gauge reaches zero since she seems to be the most reckless one of the three. But after thinking about it a bit more, I don’t think it would make difference. She doesn’t seem to care about her well being at all. Good thing it seems to have a safety feature. The real question is who can override it? Revealing it to Kizuna first and making him team leader actually makes sense now.

    I’m interested to see how this reveal will effect Kizuna. It should change his priorities a little. Makes me wonder who suggested the “holodeck” in episode one.

    • Highway says:

      Hmm, I wonder about what you call a ‘safety feature’, and whether it’s more just the inability of a body to push itself to death, especially if it’s not used to the feeling. That’s why Yurishia lost her armor / form / whatever. That’s part of what was so horribly on Nayuta’s part. But like you say, I wouldn’t put it past Aine to push herself too far.

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