26 CommentsKill la Kill / By Shinmaru /

Kill la Kill 4 – Trap Master

kill-la-kill-mako-is-the-greatest

Mako once again proving her superiority this week.

Excuse me while I fall head over heels for how Looney Tunes this episode is. I really enjoy the concept of the ridiculous comedy episode after a dramatic turning point in a series. Perhaps my favorite example is Revolutionary Girl Utena when a couple of episodes after the beginning of the Black Rose Arc, just when the drama’s really getting moving, the audience gets the Cow Episode. (I dare not spoil the simple beauty of the Cow Episode for those who have not borne witness to its awesome splendor.) Here, but one episode after the crazy battle with the crazy power-ups we get a gauntlet of deathtraps.

Sure it pushes the story forward in a perfunctory way — it’s an annual event that the student council is using to crush Ryuuko, yada yada yada — but, really, this episode is here because the creators wanted to draw many silly traps and have the heroes fight through them. So they did. And why not? They’re hilarious. Why let a silly little thing like plot get in the way of something so pure and wonderful?

kill-la-kill-mako-eats-the-cheese

This episode is also a nice example of doing great things even when the animation quality isn’t totally there. It’s not all that surprising that the next episode after all the fighting in ep3 looks a bit stiff, but it’s worked around in some fun ways. There are plenty of opportunities to mess with the character models in silly ways such as in the above shot when Mako is about to take a bite into her wondrous cheesy prize. I especially enjoy how the limited, stiff nature of this episode’s animation is actually employed for jokes. The best one is definitely when Maiko puts on Senketsu and makes to destroy Ryuuko but can’t because Mako’s mom starched Senketsu when cleaning the uniform. Wonderful. That is the best joke based on crap animation since, well, INFERNO COP, but you get the point. If you didn’t laugh at Maiko’s wobbly inability to attack Ryuuko in any way, then we just can’t be friends.

Speaking of Maiko, I assume everyone who saw her immediately pegged her as evil due to those fierce red eyes. You can’t fool me! I may be crap at pointing out plot twists, but I know a comedically evil character when I see one! I enjoyed her semi-subtly sabotaging the trek to the school and becoming less subtle about it as they get closer to their destination. Plus points for use of Marina Inoue (she shows up in barely anything I watch these days; it is so wonderful to hear her go full-on Cartoon Evil) and that fantastic use of the classic Looney Tunes fake backdrop gag. It somehow took me by surprise, and my laughter was all the louder for it. I sort of wish the episode had gone extra ridiculous and had Mako run through it but Ryuuko still crash into it (because, of course, Mako runs on cartoon logic), but it’s no biggie.

kill-la-kill-ryuuko-present

And this ending! Perfect conclusion after all the noisiness of the journey to get to school. Ryuuko just slinks to her desk, sighs heavily and settles in for another day of school. Such beautiful comedic timing.

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25 Comments

  1. Posted October 26, 2013 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

    I’m probably the only one who thinks this because very few people watched the show, but this episode reminded me of one of the wackier episodes of Urusei Yatsura. Basically, you take a simple concept, blow it up to the extreme, yet it’s all controlled without being random, and have it last an entire episode length to boot.

    Absurd with actual intelligence behind it. That’s probably my favorite kind of comedy.

  2. Posted October 26, 2013 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

    It feels odd to say, but this might be my favorite episode. It was just so in love with what it was doing, so GOOD at what it was doing, so legitimately funny and full of energy despite basically consisting of unanimated characters being thrown across the screen… this episode made me very, very happy.

    I think the soundtrack also deserves a mention this time. That over-the-top tragic music when they were introducing Maiko was absolutely perfect – these guys understand just how important music is to those Looney Tunes gags.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

      It might be my favorite so far, too, though obviously ep3 is quite good.

  3. Wodes
    Posted October 26, 2013 at 10:25 pm | Permalink

    I actually hated the placement of the cow episode in the black rose saga, because it felt way too early to introduce a comic relief episode (I loved the episode itself though). For me, that totally deflated the action and made the black rose arc my least favorite arc as far as the plot was concerned.

    Similarly, I thought this episode alone was fine but felt way too early, especially since episode 3 wasn’t as huge of a deal as it was hyped to be. I’m still waiting for someone to die circa episode 8.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

      That’s basically why I loved it. Whether they took a chance, didn’t give a shit, or there were scheduling/production conflicts and they needed that episode to go out to have time to finish the others … the cow episode ended up where it did, cut off the drama and was still absolutely hilarious.

      Also hype lol. Never listen to hype.

  4. Mr. Anon
    Posted October 27, 2013 at 1:41 am | Permalink

    Meanwhile I’m wondering why you guys aren’t blogging Kyoukai no Kanata. That episode 4 was the best thing so far this season.

    • Posted October 27, 2013 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

      I think Shin dropped it in order to make more time to see that pervy wrestling show because his taste is that twisted.

      • Shinmaru
        Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

        I dropped it because I don’t care about any of the characters. Don’t know about Inushinde, but I’m pretty sure Scamp never even watched the first episode.

      • Coolwihp
        Posted November 3, 2013 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

        I knew as soon as I started Kyoukai that it wouldn’t be on The Cart Driver, though I really enjoy the show I understand.

  5. Cirith
    Posted October 27, 2013 at 2:31 am | Permalink

    Loony toons, that is a good comparison. Personally the episode convinced me that the series simply isn’t for me. My impression of the first 3 episode was very mixed, but a humour episode without any jokes that worked for me is probably a clear sign that it isn’t a good fit for my tastes.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

      Ah, that’s a shame, but sometimes a series just doesn’t work for a person.

  6. Cobrah
    Posted October 27, 2013 at 4:49 am | Permalink

    I was a bit worried when I heard that the animation on this episode was little… awful, but I don’t think this episode would have been as funny as it was if it didn’t have the stiff animation. Totally on board with low budget comedies after crazy action episodes.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

      I think it would have been funny with good animation, but here it’s definitely a case of making a positive out of a negative.

  7. Nagisa33
    Posted October 27, 2013 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

    Mako=best character.
    Just look at her, standing up and smack talking one of the toughest characters with her GAR.
    http://www.entravity.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/kill-la-kill-mako.jpg

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

      Don’t fuck with Mako.

  8. Johnny Joestar
    Posted October 27, 2013 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    I personally had a blast watching this episode. There’s nothing wrong with a breather every now and then, and it does fit very well with the rest of the show. I’m also hoping Makoi will return.

    And like it or not, out of the four episodes we’ve had so far, this is by far the most Imaishi one.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

      Yes, I think it does a good job of pushing the spirit of the show as a whole while still being funny in and of itself.

  9. ANON
    Posted October 27, 2013 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    the only thing that entered my mind when watching this was the phrase “Never a dull moment”.

  10. stushi
    Posted October 27, 2013 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

    I’m usually not an easy to please person when it comes to anime, especially comedy, but for some reason I find myself laughing out loud at the stupidity that takes a certain kind of genius to pull off.
    Even when I see the screenshots I can’t help but giggle every time.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

      It’s the great physical comedy that gets me. I’m not that into anime humor, but animation is such a great medium for physical humor.

  11. Adreme
    Posted October 28, 2013 at 6:36 am | Permalink

    This episode confused me greatly but probably because last episode I watched what unmistakably was a final battle into what was 5 seconds short of an actual ending only for them to turn around and go “um we still have a ton of character for her to fight can you take a break from that” so we will probably spend about 8 episodes coming up with weird reasons why the rest of student council is even remotely in her league despite satsuki being stronger then them BEFORE having a uniform.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

      We shall see! This is definitely a nice one-off scenario.

  12. Gan_HOPE326
    Posted October 28, 2013 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    I am currently watching Utena (mostly out of the many comparisons already made with Kill la Kill). I now have something to look forward to.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted October 28, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

      I hope you enjoy it!

  13. Posted December 9, 2013 at 3:54 am | Permalink

    I’m literally a few minutes from finishing this episode (my mother interrupted me so she could watch some drama about exactly 4400 people from different time periods returning at all once from a giant blue meteor-like thing and they have to learn to fit into society, love, and not get killed by fearful plebs).

    I’m enjoying it so far, and although I thought I’d LOVE Mako after seeing some GIF images prior to starting, she hasn’t really caught on yet. I just started this show today so she’ll probably grow on me within a few days once my mind seeps in.

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