Brave Witches Episode 9: Break Witches
You just know she’s about to do something reckless.
Sorry for the delay! As I said in my Strike post earlier this evening, the past few days was my first time preparing the entire Winter Preview and, as I told Eva, I don’t think I quite appreciated how much time it takes until I had to put one together myself. I’m writing this having not watched Episode 10, so bear with me.
More than anything, I’m rather surprised that this was even a Kanno episode. Not that I don’t appreciate it, but I’ve always felt that her character and personality were already fleshed out to a rather healthy degree (as opposed to someone like Rall). In light of Rall’s apparent wounds that have yet to heal, even a flashback episode for Rall would be great. But Takami having woken up will probably give Kanno even more screen time in future episodes. And there was lots that ended up being reinforced rather than stated for the first time – she’s brash, incredibly reckless and competitive. What was unusual, however, was that we saw a vulnerable and defeatist Kanno for the first time this episode. Both of which are adjectives you’d never normally associate with her. I knew she was rather miffed over Krupinski revealing her power level in the previous episode, but I didn’t think she would get riled up over it to this extent. Couple that with Sasha having sacrificed herself to take a hit for Kanno, and you have a Fusou Witch who’s not only torn over her guilt but also frustrated at her (relative) lack of ability and yet has nothing she can do about it. Up until now, I’ve been always content with thinking that Kanno and Hikari had a surprisingly good relationship considering the former’s personality, but that impromptu pep talk was amazing. I was moved, I really was. It was like the cute girl version of the over-memed Shia motivational speech, and therefore it’s at least five times as effective on me as that was.
We were also introduced to (and Hikari was inducted into) the Break Witches! It’s been hinted at from past episodes, especially given how cross Sasha gets over all these Striker Units breaking, but Nipa and Kanno break a lot of stuff. Out of clumsiness (although that might mostly be Nipa) and recklessness most often, or a combination of the two. And sometimes it isn’t even their fault, like how Kanno’s new Shiden Kai got all busted while she was wrecking some Neuroi. That opening scene was quite interesting actually – I don’t remember having ever seen the inside of a Neuroi before. I wasn’t particularly surprised by what I saw, but it was noteworthy. I also love this Break Witches eye catch. Especially my cute wife Nipa.
Finally, Takami has woken up at long last! I have to say, I’m really enjoying how such a liberal stance has been taken with regards to cameo appearances by the 501st. In hindsight, it really was a good idea to have this Orussian nest appear right after the one in Gallia was destroyed, so that there’d be no continuity issues with having as many members of the 501st turn up as it’s technically disbanded at the moment. I thought that that newspaper in the first episode featuring Sakamoto and Yoshika on the front cover was about as far as they would take it, but we’ve had Sanya, Eila and now even Yoshika featured with speaking roles in Brave Witches! And each of them have made important contributions, too! As far as Takami waking up is concerned, I’m not sure whether her (apparent) conflict with Hikari will serve as the foundation for the final few episodes, but I can very well see it tying into the wider plot. I wouldn’t be surprised if she arrives in Orussia and is horrified to see Hikari fighting on the front lines in her stead, having somehow been accepted by the rest of the 502nd. On top Rall probably intends to have Hikari participate in her large-scale operation to get rid of Grigori as well, and Takami will expect everyone to disagree only to get the thumbs-up from them all, including Kanno. Wait until she hears about Hikari’s Contact Eye and how she’s actually been using it in battle. She’ll be furious.