Hisone to Masotan – Episode 8
Another really exciting episode for Hisone to Masotan this week, although I must admit one of those Okada Mari things I done like finally came up this time around… I don’t want hints of love triangles, rectangles or polygons! Either way, it’s one of her signatures, so I was warned beforehand.
Two of my comments from the previous episode’s review did get addressed: we see Okonogi and Hisone getting closer and we finally learn what the Ritual is and what the role of D-Pilots and OTFs is in it. The reveal of who the Joie lady is happens as well, finally.
The D-pilots are also formerly introduced to Vice-Minister Iiboshi who had only previously interacted with Nao and Ririko, without disclosing his identity. He explains that the Ritual is an event that involves the OTFs and it’s the real mission of the ‘white lovers’, which is what Iiboshi calls the D-pilots. It’s a Shinto rite in which the OTFs must escort their newly awakened ruler Mitatsu-sama to the new location in which it will rest. The first thing I thought when they said the Ritual happens every 74 years was ‘boy, how old is the Joie lady?!’
It turns out Mitatsu-sama is the island in which they did part of their training before and the presence of the pilots there, woke the creature from slumber. This got me pretty excited! I’m really looking forward to what the Ritual will look like. Soon enough the girls have to start doing training for their true mission and the Joie lady, Hinomoto Sada, will aid them with her knowledge. The mission is a though one as the pilots and OTFs must make sure that Mitatsu-sama doesn’t go off-course to his new destination, but the flight takes about 3 days and 3 nights time and they can’t land during this time.
Before this though, Hisone talks to Okonogi during flight preparation and mentions that they can watch another movie, Nao observes closely and both then and later on in the episode she makes the most hilarious comments about what she suspects it’s Okonogi and Hisone’s relationship, although we viewers know is nothing as juicy as what she imagines. The narrative teases whoever ships these two a lot as well since we’re given some fanservice on their compatibility during flight preparation only for it to be taken away in the next one in an act of symbolic ‘will they, won’t they’! Ouch, my heart.
In the end they do a run-through for the mission with a dummy for Mitatsu-sama so they pilots can get a feel of what the Ritual will be like in reality. For 2 days the girls try their best, but struggle to comply with the instruction from Hinomoto who eventually gets fed up and flies to location to give them an angry earful.
This scene was really nice and interesting because it emphasizes how there’s a multiplicity of ways in which individuals can interpret reality. Hisone is concerned with the idea of leaving Masotan ‘alone’ and going to sleep on her own while he continues to fly. She sees this act as selfish and a betrayal to the Masotan who gave her a dream and a reason to exist. Hinomoto explains that this is what the OTFs want from them, they want the pilots to sleep so they can fly as one. It’s through the girls’ submission and giving up of their self that D-pilot and OTF will align to fly while the pilot sleeps. It also reminded me that before Iiboshi had mentioned that the OTF gives up his body in a humiliating act of being controlled by the pilot, but they chose who they gave up this to. It’s a nice show of it being a two way street.
The episode ends with the mission test being a success. During their dreaming they saw a scene from a previous pilot and one of the OTFs seemed to be Masotan, so I’m wondering what’s up with that. The pilots arrive back at the base and while they celebrate another group makes their appearance. It’s a group of young girls who Iiboshi refers to as the ‘miko’ and then we also learn that Okonogi seems to have a bigger role in this than anticipated. I’m really looking forward to next episode and I really hope that they clear up my most important questions: who is this Natsume and what’s her relationship with Okonogi?