KILL la KILL: Episode 19

Trigger Plotting ahead.

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This week’s KILL la KILL picks up right where we stopped, with the COVERS dragging people into them.  God bless you, Trigger, for trying to make suits intimidating. A for effort, guys.

The most adorable (and heartbreaking!) moment comes in the form of Mako being absorbed by a COVERS, and Gamagoori trying desperately to save her. I don’t think we’ve ever seen him lose his cool quite like that.

And this is one het pairing I can get behind.

Meanwhile, Ryuko is losing her shit. Understatement of the year.  The table turning against her, Satsuki destroys the stadium.

After the credits we come in on a one month time skip.  COVERS roam the streets looking for suitable hosts, we are in post-post-apocalyptic world, now.  We catch the tail end of an evacuation, where Sanegeyama, his Goku outfit beaten and worn out (an amazing way to get that across, the little “grid” that forms when he transforms is full of holes, and we’re instantly aware something is wrong).  But the COVERS are too much for him alone, and the uniform shatters.  Some of his old friends buy time for the evacuation, but they can’t resist forever and are absorbed.

Yes, the Elite Four have teamed up with Nudist Beach. But it’s still clearly an alliance of convenience.  Inumuta and Mikisugi aren’t above trading blows.  Mikisugi laments that Nudist Beach would be better prepared if Satsuki hadn’t gone to war with them.  Inumuta responds that if Satsuki’s intentions had been made public there was a stronger chance of it getting back to Ragyo.  They’re both right, really, and anything else is armchair quarterbacking.

More importantly, all of the schools in Satsuki’s empire have collapsed, Sanegeyama and Gamagoori were evacuating the final one.

So okay…I don’t mean to look like I’m trying to pick fights but…why was Satsuki’s cover-plan (huehue) so important to Ragyo? If the high schools have been conquered in just a MONTH, why all the fuss? Why go through the trouble of subverting them when, in the end, open conflict really doesn’t seem to have set Revocs back?  It’s certainly not because it will strike a nerve with the public, that is explained away by the COVERS acting like a censor on the people who wear them.

You don’t get to eat your cake and have it, too, Trigger.

I guess the best argument is “Ragyo didn’t actually care”, but why use the “conquest” of the teen demographic as the benchmark for the big red button?

You know, other than plot convenience?

While all of this has been going on, Ryuko has been asleep.  More adorable comes in the form of Gamagoori promising Mako’s family that he will get her back. “When I look at your family” indeed, Mikisugi.

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So cutting to Satsuki, who is in a literal Human birdcage, being paid a visit by Ragyo, we learn that Humans lose their resistance to clothing by 20. So thus, only teens can fight back. The power of YOUTH and all that Might Guy crap. Ragyo, however, says the more they resist the stronger the COVERS can become.  Oh boy, that means EVERYONE just has to stop resisting and…get naked…by putting them on…or something…screw it your motiff is too all over the place for me to construct a useful joke here, Trigger.

The conversation quickly turns to Ryuko.  Just, damn, Satsuki, you’ve only had a sister for a month and already your mom can’t stop about how she prefers her over you.

So there’s definitely something wrong with this timeframe.  Satsuki was 1 year old when her life fiber experiments began, and Ragyo was already pregnant with second child.  But Suichiro didn’t vanish until Satsuki was 5…at best, Satsuki should be two years older than Ryuko (judging by their grade level, that seems appropriate). So what happened the other two or three years?  Was Isshin leading a double life?  Is this a case of Occam’s Razor being wrongly applied?  Is Ryuko in fact completely independent of Ragyo’s lost daughter, and thus her inevitable make outs with Satsuki won’t be creepy?

Did Trigger just not think this timeline through?

You be the judge.

The fact no one has thought of this either makes them all fucking stupid, or it’s just a plot hole we’re glazing over.

More importantly, this would say some pretty terrible things about Satsuki’s dad. Let’s list them, shall we!

First, and most generous, the heat from Revocs became too much and he had to abandon Satsuki when she became old enough to form her own opinions and he had faith in his daughter, while he went off to do his damndest to get her little sister ready for the war.  Again, just assuming things went down as the show is currently describing them to us, this seems like the opinion the show wants us to take of it.

Or, Soichiro didn’t actually think his eldest daughter had a chance and threw her to the wolves.  Maybe he expected her to fail.  Maybe he WANTED her to fail, oooooo. That’s some Jerry Springer shit right there.

I mean after all, Satsuki is her mother’s daughter (as we established last week), but what if she’s also her father’s daughter?

Ragyo continues to try and provoke Satsuki. She wants her to be the new core to some kind of super-Kamui.

Well, with the schools gone, the COVERS army turns on Nudist Beach. And they know exactly how slim their chances are.  But luckily, we have a new toy.  Gamagoori notices Guts barking at a specific outfit, so he turns the device on that one.  And out pops Mako, fully freed from the COVERS after a grueling process.  We get a bit of explanation, a COVER that has a Human host is no longer connected to the ball of yarn Original Life Fiber.  So by cutting the Human portion out, they not only save a person, but destroy a COVER, a win-win.

The only problems: That took a long time, and there are a LOT of COVERS.

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Unfortunately for them, they wake Ryuko up.  Without even wearing Senketsu, she slices them to RIBBONS, freeing all the people.  Ryuko is absolutely livid, though, and it’s really an existential crisis.  She wants nothing to do with Senketsu, after three episodes ago willing to take a needle bullet for him.  She says he just reminds her that she’s inhuman.

That’s certainly a normal reaction. But what bothers me about it is…if this had happened just four episodes ago it would not have phased Ryuko.  “Life Fiber Hybrid? Bullshit on you, lady. I just want to kick your smug ass!”  It’s, sadly, ironically…conveniently…only after Ryuko took on the quest of fighting for the people she cared about that this information would phase her.

Am I the only one fearing that she will have to go back to not giving a fuck, to the power of youth and not being serious and “using her own strength” to get over this hump? Making this whole thing a four episode plot contrivance?  I’m not the only one? Oh thank god.

Or, was the little COVERS orchestra Ragyo’s plan? Did their “song” vibrate the string inside Ryuko to make her this volatile?

But despite Ragyo’s attempts to humiliate and infuriate her daughter, Satsuki knows that while there is life, there is hope.  You think a girl with a single minded obsession for the past 13 years is going to surrender it just because she ran into a setback? Fuck no! And that’s why she’s MY hero in this story. Ryuko learned she was a prodigy and it has thrown her out of sorts. Satsuki learned she WASN’T a prodigy after all, and it has not dampened her resolve.

This episode was light on action, heavy on what is quickly going to be described as “TriggerPlotting”.  But the badassery that we have been waiting for balanced out.  The novelty of seeing Nudist Beach and the Elite Four working together buoyed this one up more so than, say, Episode 17 or 16.

Now, for your viewing pleasure.

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One thought on “KILL la KILL: Episode 19

  1. Nonon’s side-boob. I’m impressed her body could pull off a raging otaku boner from me. Well done kid.

    Ragyo continues working her butt off to show the world she deserves to be voted “Best Villain” of a yuri (ISH) anime, or show with yuri content if you want more specific, in 2014.

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