Hanasaku Iroha – 07: Call of Duty: Band of Perverts
Ah, woe is Tomoe! (It’s not supposed to rhyme) For how long has she languished in the gallows of society, as a nondescript head waitress? Time and tide waits for no man, and especially not for Tomoe. She has spurned many chances to engage in a relationship, and feeling washed up, whilst receiving repeated encouragement from her mother, she decides to search for greener pastures, and possibly a mate to settle down with.
To bring up the topic of quitting wasn’t as easy as she thought though, as Okami-san had some foreboding news of the return of the “survival gamers”. These are army nuts who feel that NERF guns are an insult to their militarized lifestyle, hence resorting to carrying out simulations in urban areas.
Their mission objective hasn’t got an ounce to do with the defence of the nation however. It’s something a little more….carnal.
First in line is the easiest target, dear old Ohana, who hasn’t got a clue what really to expect from the survival gamers. Back then, Kissuisho probably didn’t have Ohana and Nako working there as eye candy, so the survival gamers would’ve gone there for some pure good fun. But now that there are bigger fish in the pond, they’ve gone sneaking about in their military gear, hoping to catch an eyeful of some tasty…stuff.
Tomoe had half a mind to quit being a waitress at Kissuisho, but she couldn’t help but pity Ohana and Nako’s plight, constantly hounded by the survival gamers. Then she had a brainwave. She’d give the military nuts some tough love and get fired as a result.
Time to set the plan in motion, then! Bucket in one hand and ladle in the other, it’s her makeshift bugle for reveille. While making an outright racket, she experiences inner emotional turmoil, laughing at the brilliance of her plan, but crying that her life as a waitress will end at that very instant. What followed wasn’t the complaints from the customers and the eventual dismissal of Tomoe, but quite the opposite. Awakened by the sharp and strict, yet familiar and regimental sound, the goons lined up in single file at attention, fresh and ready to recieve the day’s routine order. Nako and Ohana were both amazed at Tomoe’s ability to rise to the call of duty, to subdue the survival gamers using method that would otherwise be considered unothrodox in modern service etiquette.
Tomoe was left in a dilemma, as to whether the mission was a success or failure. Her soul-searching was interrupted by an outraged Minko, who was incensed that the survival gamers refused to eat the food prepared by Renji and Tohru, preferring to eat military rations. Well, nobody in the right mind would want to do that, but I can probably guess why. Imagine being forced to perform tough military training while being deprived of food. At the sight of these nondescript packages of life-saving, but not necessarily tastebud-enticing food, even a food connoisseur would be salivating. That memory of eating the rations at that point of time would have given the survival gamers a false impression that the food was actually good, hence their preference. It seemed that Tomoe, armed with that knowledge, devised yet another plan to get herself and the survival gamers kicked out of Kissuisho.
Surely being miserly with food and giving them crappy lumps of Onigiri would fuel some of their rage to get Tomoe kicked out? Apparently not. Tomoe made the mistake of dragging Minko into the mix, claiming that it was her work as a junior chef-in-training. Awed by Minko’s outward appearance, the survival gamers savoured the plain lumps of rice as if it was Ambrosia. As they asked for seconds, you could see, for the very first time in history, a smile breaking across Minko’s face. Who knew that she was capable of such expressions? Tomoe, the miracle worker, has done it again! And she hasn’t the foggiest why she hasn’t been skinned by Okami-san yet.
Desensitized by military regimentation, the survival gamers have lost the ability to differentiate between genders of the human species. They pick Jiromaru as their next target of prey, ready to have a taste of the forbidden fruit. (For a more in-depth analysis of the quirks of the human psyche regarding compatibility between two sets of XY chromosomes, please refer to weekly research papers cleverly disguised in the form of anime reviews by my fellow HIMYO blogger JohnnyYandere) Tomoe decides to execute yet another one of her plans, spraying them with jet-powered water meant for quelling riots. That has to be the last straw, right?
As you can guess, yeah, it wasn’t. The survival gamers acknowledged Tomoe as a worthy commander, having repelled their “advances” each and every time, dealing them a comprehensive defeat. They also vowed to brush up their skills such that it wouldn’t be such a one-sided victory the coming year. Nako and Ohana were in complete adoration of Tomoe, elevating her into “big sis” status.
With that, Tomoe dismissed the idea of getting herself dismissed, as she had tons of fun dealing with the survival gamers. Not to mention that she has two cute juniors (plus one potentially cute one if she stop scowling) in complete adoration of their big sis.
Forge onwards with glory, Commander Tomoe Onee-san!
This episode was entertaining as hell, despite Tomoe taking centre stage for once. This series is as fun to watch as AnoHana is intriguing. Also, I think Noto Mamiko should stick to these kinds of characters to voice, as it is infinitely tougher and yet more interesting than the breathy, soft-spoken quiet characters that she’s typecast into. Given the right character to work on, Mamiko-san can display the vocal dynamics that will wipe away any thought that she’s a one-trick pony, like a certain Kugimiya Rie (once you’ve heard one of her tsundere, you’ve heard it all.)