Girls und Panzer Episode 11: A Fierce Battle!
“So she picks helping her friends over taking the tanks forward.”
The Ooarai flag tank is somehow protected through a fluke, and all the Ooarai tanks decide to release smoke to throw off Black Forest Peak, heading up a mountainside hill and employing tactics to get around their disadvantages. With Ooarai positioned on top of the hill, they begin exchanging shots with Black Forest Peak, who decides to steadily advance towards Ooarai. When Anzu’s team disrupts the enemy’s formation, Ooarai use this chance to escape, heading across a river and into an urban area where they plan to devise more tactics. However, when a Maus super-heavy tank makes its appearance, Miho hurriedly calls for a retreat, losing two tanks in the process.
It’s been a long time coming, but fear not – Girls und Panzer makes a triumphant return at last! We’ve had to wait 3 months for these two episodes, so my memory was a little fuzzy, but I grasped what was going on after they replayed that magnificent fluke defence that protected the flag tank at the cost of one of Ooarai’s tanks. For Ooarai, losing a tank is quite a big deal – they only have 7 or 8 assorted tanks, which pales in comparison to Black Forest Peak’s 20-odd high class tanks. Money does make the world go round…but tactics and skill play a part too, which Miho demonstrated with their clever methods that pleased Katyusha to no end. From deploying lots and lots of smoke to throw Black Forest Peak off their trail (and zigzagging while they were at it) to overcoming the Porsche Tiger’s limitations by dragging it up the hill…they’re not ninjas. They’re better than ninjas :D It’s how Ooarai are making up for the disadvantage in numbers and tank quality, so I’m not finding it cheap at all.
Apart from Miporin’s Anko team, the Student Council and Anzu in particular took a lot of the spotlight with their awesome tricks, hanging around behind the main horde of enemy tanks and picking off a few while casually rolling up in line with their formation. It must have been such an awkward moment to notice an enemy tank right next to you, yet realise that they’re too close to you for your gun to shoot xD Anzu actually did quite a lot of damage to the Black Forest Peak attack lines – they’re trained to attack in a standard, orderly fashion, and don’t know what to do outside of that. That’s why when something unexpected turns up, they go into disarray immediately, and aren’t flexible enough to adapt to new developments. Well, that’s not completely true – trust Maho to get things back in order by sending their heavy Jagdtiger to the front, and using it to deflect all the shells fired towards them. It wouldn’t have been good if Black Forest Peak managed to get to the top of that hill, so I’m glad Ooarai managed to get out of there before things got too ugly. They survived that exchange with no casualties too :D
I felt there was something ominous about that river, and the Rabbit team drew the short straw this time. It was here that Miho’s kindness shone through once again – just like when she attended Black Forest Peak, she decided to help out her friends instead of advancing the tanks forward and leaving the Rabbit team to fend for themselves, all while knowing that the enemy was advancing straight for the river. That’s my Miporin – and look at that show of radical Panzerfahren, jumping ACROSS lots of tanks to get to the Rabbit team! That’s just too cool xD
Ooarai has performed well in urban warfare in the past, so I was assuming they’d be fine with ample time to set everything up. That is, until I saw the Maus. What an absolute monster of a tank – even Katyusha looked terrified, and despite having minimal knowledge of tanks, it’s got to be a rare type if Yukari (of all people) has never seen one move before. Wikipedia says only 2 have ever been built (during Hitler’s Third Reich) and even then it had its own issues, a primary one being speed due to its massive weight. But it managed to take out another two of Ooarai’s tanks all the same – bringing their total tank count down to 5. Who knew Maho was hiding that kind of beast in an urban location…and the combined assault of all of Ooarai’s tanks couldn’t even scratch it. Taking it out will be unlikely – Ooarai should have a better chance of winning by finding the Black Forest Peak flag tank and concentrating on that instead.
One episode left, and next Monday seems further away than ever now. I wonder how I even survived those 3 months…Japan had a few Girls und Panzer events during that time, giving out memorabilia and other goodies. Meanwhile, I did take my time marathoning both Saki and Saki Achiga-hen, which turned out to have a fairly similar story mould to Girls und Panzer, minus the copious amounts of yuri implications. Both involve the protagonist revisiting a popular game they’re adept at, aiming to participate in the Nationals to reunite with their respective older sisters who have become distant and cold towards them. Both have a largely all-girl cast, and have that fun factor pulling you into it – wait, I’m digressing now. Anyway, here’s to hoping for an amazing finale! And if it’s not too much to ask, a Season 2 perhaps?