The old dude is basically following the tsundere handbook. I-i-i-it’s not like I wanted to hang out with you. I just happened to be in the area. Oh you’re having a party? I suppose I could go, I’m n-n-n0t doing this for you or anything. Then even better he gets jealous when the other girl at the party has bigger boobs than he does so he gets really angry at takes it out on her because she’s jealous. And by ‘other girl’ I mean ‘flying tea-house’ and by ‘bigger boobs’ I mean ‘the ability to fly’.
I wasn’t so keen on the whole backstory with the dad because it retold the same story we already knew with very little additional detail. I suppose it was important to learn about how the old man tengu was involved and how the two cared about each other, but there was definitely a better way of portraying that. It went against the usual storytelling style of the show to upright plonk all those scenes in front of you, doubly so when it’s already been told. I have a better idea. You know that last scene where the old man tengu went to the dad’s sleepy hole and thanked him for his help? If it was just that scene, we would have gotten the implication that the tanuki dad did that big stunt to held the old tengu man. It would have been a much cleverer way of displaying that information in a much shorter time frame.
Admittedly we wouldn’t have gotten to see Men in Black tengu, but that’s an acceptable sacrifice for better storytelling.
(also I have got to start learning these character’s names)
I did really like the big air battle though. The characters are well-defined and have fun enough personalities that by simply throwing them into a perilous situation, the comedy flows naturally through the characters interactions. Plus through their interactions, the main story of this family bonding comes out in force. Staying close, sticking together when times are tough and other family members are under fire, both verbally and physically. It works in delivering the main theme while being rather nonsensical about events too.
But what I loved most of all about the air battle is you get the feeling the entire event was completely orchestrated by Benten because she wanted to see destruction. Gives the family the dinky little tea-house and plants the fan in their as a weapon. Goes on board the rival family’s ship because she knows that will annoy and frighten the tea-house and damage their pride. Then sit with the head of the rival family and spend your time boosting his already inflated ego. This makes him want to wave his metaphorical dick around, so he starts to shoot the family he knows Benten is a little cosy with. Benten then invites Yasaburou to use the fan as a weapon, all while making sure she’s out of the way so she can enjoy the spectacle in peace. With a nice little glass of brandy on the rocks.