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Episode 9: Her Problem

 

Review by Arshad Adel Abdul-Aal

August 18, 2010

 

Summary

 

Back at her apartment, a very paranoid Chidori spends the night watching TV with a baseball bat next to her. She can barely keep her eyes open the next day. As Kyoko tries to inquire about what happened, the teacher summons Chidori and shows her Sousuke’s letter. Chidori realizes that Sousuke is gone and might not come back. She pulls herself together and decides to investigate on her own. She packs some things in a bag and takes a walk through Tokyo, staying out in the open and quickly switching locations to confuse any pursuer. When she doesn’t notice anyone suspicious, Chidori deduces that she might have been bugged. A drunk man tries to hit on her. She’s about to blow him off but then changes her mind and asks him to take her to a hotel. Once they get into the room the man immediately tackles her into the bed and Chidori is forced to taser him. She cuffs him to the bathtub faucet, strips down to her panties then puts on her bath robe and takes a stun gun. She tries to sneak out of the window but slips and falls on some trash bags. Pulling herself up, she runs to the roof of the tallest building she can find and finds Wraith there.

 

Chidori points the stun gun at Wraith and orders him to turn around. Wraith is surprised and asks how she found the transmitter. Chidori orders him to toss his gun on the ground despite his claim to be from Mithril. Wraith tells her not to get too cocky and warns that someone else has been following her. Yu Lan shoots Wraith with a silenced pistol then tries to shoot Chidori but a shell casing jams her barrel. Chidori runs behind a water tower then onto the edge of the building. She trips and falls off but manages to propel herself to an adjacent roof. Yu Lan jumps after her and gives chase. Chidori jumps onto another roof and tries to escape but the door leading to the stairs is locked. Yu Lan spots the edge of Chidori’s robe behind a container and slices at it with her machete, but the robe is actually a decoy. Chidori who’s crouched behind her hesitates a bit but remembers Sousuke’s words and fires the stun gun, knocking Yu Lan out. Leonard suddenly appears accosted by two of the automated human-sized Alastor arm slaves and congratulates Chidori on defeating her pursuer. Chidori asks who he is, and he reveals that he’s a Whispered like her. He tells Yu Lan that he knows she’s awake and that he’ll speak to Amalgam on their behalf if the twins stop their rampage. Yu Lan refuses and says that they’re following the orders of their master. She throws a knife at Leonard but he deflects it with his overcoat. Yu Lan charges at him with her machete but one of the Alastors grabs her by the throat and under Leonard’s order, chokes her to death. Chidori says that there was no need to kill her and Leonard retorts that he didn’t kill as many people as Sousuke did. Chidori weakly tries to defend Sousuke, and Leonard asks if she loves him. He uses her confused denial to steal her first kiss, and gets promptly slapped in return. Leonard confesses that he loves her, and Chidori in return voices her disgust at what he did. She says that she’ll forgive him if he leaves Wraith for her, and Leonard complies before leaving with Yu Lan’s corpse. Chidori asks the paralyzed Wraith if he needs help, and the latter replies that he’d rather die with his pride. Chidori punches a water tank and breaks down into tears crying for Sousuke to come back to her. She gets up and tells Wraith that since he’s better off dead for his screw up he might as well help her.

 

Commentary

 

For an episode focusing solely on Chidori there’s a lot of action and suspense here. Chidori quickly regains her confidence and manages to outsmart both Wraith and Yu Lan. It's nice that even though Chidori came to depend on Sousuke to protect her she was still able to take care of herself when he abruptly disappears from her life. Too bad the last third of the episode was spent officially introducing FMP’s white-haired pretty boy villain. Leonard Testarossa has it all, right down to the penchant for fancy talk and silly justifications for his actions, and he also has a pair of highly advanced arm slave bodyguards. Now Yu Lan’s dead and Wraith, who turned out to be only disguised as a fat middle-aged man, is incapacitated, but Chidori’s not down for the count yet.

 

Overall Rating

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4 out of 5 stars
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Buy the collection (eps 0-13, OVA) on Blu-ray from Amazon

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