Friday, November 7, 2008

Ga-Rei - Zero 05: Operation Love

IN A NUTSHELL: With both their families putting more pressure on their betrothal, Yomi and Noriyuki can't remain indifferent to each other for long. But instead of love, the feelings that come out is...hate?
EPISODE 05: Obstinate Feelings

Isayama gives Yomi a kimono that once belonged to his wife. While she tries it on, he inquires after her school, her work, and finally after Noriyuki. This brings the conversation to the betrothal, about which neither Yomi nor Noriyuki is too thrilled about. Perhaps aware of her misgivings, Isayama again asks her about her feelings in the matter. Like the obedient daughter, Yomi says that it is her duty and that it would do her great honor to enter into the marriage.

duty + family = love (?)

Meanwhile, Kagura is still moping about last episode where her father scolded her when Noriyuki comes along. The two of them talk for a while, mainly about the kudagitsune (which are revealed to have the capacity to reproduce) and one's duty to pass the technique down the family.
certified CUTE

When Kagura comes home that evening, Yomi is unusually affectionate. Kagura asks her if anything is wrong but she just says nothing. The next day at work, Kagura notes that someone has been exorcising supernatural disaster sources without contacting the SDCD. Kazuka reveals that there are freelancer exorcists besides them. Just then, Yomi arrives and, continuing with her overly affectionate behavior from last night, she hugs and teases Kagura, until the latter girl finally notices what's the difference: Yomi is wearing perfume and wearing make-up.

ah, young love ~

While Yomi is trying to evade Kagura's searching questions, Noriyuki arrives and comments that something stinks. At this, everybody grows still and Yomi reacts in horror. Kagura then bravely pipes up that she's been trying on make-up, prompting Noriyuki to advise her against it as it would make her smell like an old woman. Yomi, who has been quiet all this time, calmly walks over to Noriyuki and throws hot coffee on his face. This causes sparks to fly with Yomi and Noriyuki summoning their respective ga-rei. Fortunately, impending doom is timely prevented when Ayame, shadowed by Kiri as usual, order them not to release their ga-rei while in the office.
looking out for the family

While war threatens to erupt between Yomi and Noriyuki at the Countermeasure Division office, their respective parents are having a very civilized conversation about their children's betrothal. The Izuna family apparently wants to push the marriage along but Isayama wants to wait until Yomi graduates from school. Later that day, Isayama discusses Yomi's betrothal with his younger brother, Yuu. While the latter congratulates him on a good match, he questions Isayama's decision to let Yomi, who is only fostered, inherit from their family. Isayama, however, shoots him down, saying that if that was his thinking all along then he never should have allowed Yomi to use the Shishi-ou. As it was, Yuu, who was too cowardly to take up the sword before, cannot now ask to receive the family inheritance while eschewing the responsibility that comes with it.

a family affair

Yuu reasons that the family inheritance should not be handed down to an outsider when his daughter, Mei, who is an Isayama by blood, can inherit. Yuu adds that Mei is skilled with exorcism and can very well take up the family mission. As if on cue, Mei appears then. But instead of supporting her father, she says that Yomi is far superior with the sword and is trusted within the family. She asks her father not to stand up for her. Later, however, she tells her father that exorcists have a short life span. She speculates that even if Yomi inherits now but later on she dies, it would still all go to Mei in the end.

operation love in action

The next day, Kagura is in school with her classmates and somehow their conversation is about Yomi and Noriyuki. Her friends think the whole thing is romantic. Kagura then gets an idea to get the two of them closer together but it would require the help of her friends at the SDCD. Her plan doesn't pass muster, however, as neither Kazuka nor the Nabuu twins are willing to "attack" Yomi so that Noriyuki could come in and "rescue" her. They're too afraid of Yomi to risk it. And Iwahata is simply uninterested, saying that he would be happy if Yomi and Noriyuki would break up as that would leave the latter all to himself. But eventually, Kagura gets help from an unlikely source -- Ayame, who has a plan indeed.
LMAO (Ayame, you tease!)

With everyone in position, Ayame puts her plan into motion. Kiri, wearing a skimpy dress, approaches Noriyuki. Apparently, she is supposed to act all cute but because of her nervousness, she ends up acting very stiff. Noriyuki appreciates her outfit, however, and even starts flirting with her. Kagura and the others, with the exception of Ayame, are all watching this from afar, so when Yomi arrives at the vicinity, they are immediately alerted.

Yomi sees the two together. She approaches them but doesn't say anything, even after Noriyuki's casual "Yo!" Ayame orders Kiri to go to Phase 2, which involves her sidling close to Noriyuki. Yomi doesn't even blink. Desperate now, Ayame calls for Phase 3, which has Kiri jumping Noriyuki right there in front of Yomi. Noriyuki, of course, has no idea what's going on. Kiri, still acting, says that there is no need to keep their relationship a secret anymore.

Yomi's having none of that now

Finally, Yomi starts to move. She calmly gets a bottle of soda from the vending machine and throws it hard towards Noriyuki, hitting him right in the face. After recovering from the blow, Noriyuki furiously stalks towards her. Yomi does the same.
don't worry. this is just foreplay

While the two are busy shouting at each other, Kiri walks away. Once she is far enough, she gets down on her hunches, obviously embarrassed. Back to the World War III couple, the two are now confronting each other about their being forced to agree to the engagement. Apparently, Noriyuki has interpreted Yomi's earlier showing of violence as jealousy. Yomi fervently denies this, saying that she has no feelings for him at all. She adds that she is only forced to go along with the engagement, to which Noriyuki only says that he is being forced as well. This statement of his causes her to slap him in the face. Noriyuki returns the favor and the two of them start bitch-slapping each other. Then, Yomi gets really angry and gives him a punch that forces him several steps back. The two then realize that they are never going to resolve their conflict and wonder if they would continue to quarrel even after the marriage. Noriyuki asks her if she still wants to go ahead with it. Yomi hesitates.
see what i mean?

Before things really get out of hand, Kagura arrives. She reveals that the whole thing is her plan because she wants the two of them to get along. Instead of getting angry at her, Yomi only reassures Kagura, saying that she does not want her to get sad. Noriyuki says the same thing and adds that he and Yomi are okay, to which Kagura wants proof. Yomi asks what kind of proof she wants, and Kagura promptly says that she wants to see them kiss. Noriyuki is only too happy to comply but before he could steal one from Yomi, she throws him to the ground.

secret tryst ^_^

Afterwards, Kiri reports the events of the afternoon to Ayame. Even though things do not turn out the way they plan, Ayame thinks it's alright. That same evening, Yomi puts on the kimono that her father gave her. While she does, she notices one Noriyuki's kudagitsune outside the window. She follows it out and finds Noriyuki waiting for her on top of the steps. While the two fo them make up, somewhere else in the city, Mei is busy exorcising a supernatural disaster soruce.

Yomi is FTW! That's all I can say. My favorite character to come out this season. She is just AWESOME ! That scene at the SDCD office was hilarious! OMG! Who wouldn't get scared by that? Spirit beasts!!! This is why I love violent anime girls!

Speaking of hilarious, I just about laughed by head off at Kiri-chan. I bet Ayame was totally sniggering the whole time. Oh boy, that was painful. Just PAINFUL.

Kagura's overly cutesy personality is getting on my nerves. It's a good thing the episode is not so focused on her or I would have gotten annoyed.

So Yomi and Noriyuki are a couple. I can understand why they clash often: because they know they are going to end up with each other, they have no chance to explore their own feelings for each other. Hence, the war...and lol, spirit beasts.

About Mei. A shrewd character. Not only that, she's also opportunistic and a smooth-talker. Never trust shrewd, opportunistic, smooth-talking characters. But she does spend her nights chasing after evil spirits. So is she friend or foe? The next few episodes should reveal the answers.