Sat 29 Oct 2011
I’m going to come out and say this: I think Mawaru Penguindrum is the most overrated show of the season. I know it’s not a popular opinion, as anibloggers gushing left and right over it’s crazy levels of symbolism and arcane storytelling, but the show has long worn out its novelty to me. Kamba is annoying, Shouma is somehow more annoying, the storytelling is exploitative and gimmicky, and I don’t find all the “deep thematic symbolism” everyone talks about all that interesting. That said, I can’t put this show down. No matter how unimpressed I become with the show, every episode somehow, someway, finds a way to draw me back to the series. Be it a twist at the end that makes me interested in the plot again, or just plain entertainment, every episode seems to do something to redeem for all the shortcomings of the series.
Episode 16 was a perfect example. We get to explore Masako’s own twisted background. Contrary to the grim, slightly disturbing background of Yuri featured last episode, Masako’s background is comparatively comical. Masako’s grandfather was a despotic plutocrat and ruthless, womanizing businessman. At any rate, better than anything involving a chisel. Masako’s fantasies of killing her grandfather are nothing short of hysterical. Everything from the president’s comments on his taste in women to the obvious nature of Masako’s assassination was prime. The American voice was probably the funniest stuff I’ve seen in a long time.
To top it off, survival strategy makes it long awaited comeback! Now with older woman-ecchi. Curse you, Penguindrum, always finding a way to redeem yourself at the very last second…