Sunday, March 9, 2008

Spice and Wolf, episode 9

They've managed to escape one city and are on their way through the wilderness again. Bumping into a shy little girl who claims to be able to control dogs/wolves, they hire her as a guide and have an uneventful trip through some infamous woods. Pretty much all the "action" of the episode is found in Horo's reaction to the shepherd girl and her relentlessly teasing Lawrence about it. Clearly something is being set up for yet another conflict with the church, likely revolving around the aforementioned shy shepherd.

My friends seem to have pretty much given up with the show at this point (or with episode 10 - which I'm somewhat dreading), having gotten fed up with the somewhat rough, unfocused nature of the show. Despite being surprisingly subtle for an anime and gifted with a unique premise, it never really seems to quite gel and reach the next level. It has it's fair share of tense moments, but has a habit of getting side-tracked with brief economic lessons or getting stuck in a comfortable rut.

That might be my biggest gripe with the show. The broad plot is a classic fantasy cycle of being chased by powerful bad guys and being forced to flee into the wilderness, but in the details that doesn't seem to quite carry through. After a narrow escape from the Church in the last arc, Horo and Lawrence are back up into a sturdy cart and trading, business as usual. They don't seem any more paranoid about being discovered again, nor is there a greater sense of urgency about reaching Horo's northern homelands. The characters have potential for incredible depth and emotional power, but if they (and the show itself) remain static, they will never realize it.

Either way, right now I'm still enjoying the show, though I have a suspicion that it'll end up as good, but disappointing as opposed to grrrreat!
based on 9 episodes : ANN : Wikipedia : YouTube

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