Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks?
by Steve Jones,
How would you rate episode 11 of
Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks? ?
The Mommy Guild, the guild for mommies, finally enters the tower and begins their ascent. That's pretty much all that happens in this episode, and meanwhile I can feel the adaptation stretching this arc like taffy to fill out the rest of the cour. Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks? has always been slight fare, but there's little forward momentum to be found this week. It also doesn't help that the trajectory of this arc has been obvious from the get-go. The mothers, under the leadership of Mamako, were always going to reconcile with their temporarily rebellious children. I don't have an issue with predictability, but I do need a little more meat to chew on, at least.
Absent an engaging plot, all Do You Love Your Mom has left is its comedy, its message, and its fanservice. The comedy throughout the show has been far from consistent, but I did enjoy the way last week's episode married the absurdity of its core premise with some surprisingly sweet sentiments about parenthood. This week, on the other land, mostly recycles jokes or telegraphs them from far enough away to dilute any impact. Amante is clumsy and constantly reveals her plans by accident. Mamako is amazing at all things motherly. Masato's life is being slowly drained from him with each glance at his underwear-clad mom. We've long since passed the point of novelty, and the punchlines just aren't strong enough to justify the lengthy windups. Amante challenges Mamako to a domestic duel, but it's not funny if we already know that Mamako is going to completely kill it like she always does. Just for contrast, making a bomb sound like a child crying in order to deliver a weirdly accurate metaphor about the way babies can “blow up” is a much better joke, because the windup is weird and the punchline is unexpected, but in a way that makes sense.
If the episode's jokes don't land, then how about its message? In this sense, the tower arc continues to be an improvement over Medhi's story, but mostly by virtue of being much tamer. There's far less room to screw up when the lesson at the end of the day is that, even in the most loving families, there will inevitably be friction between parents and their children. It's a bit more pronounced in this MMMMMORPG, which self-selects mother-child relationships that are already going through troubled times, but it should come as no surprise to literally everybody that kids don't always get along with their parents. I was a rebellious teen once. I've had fights with my mom. I love her a lot, but there's no such thing as any relationship that's free from conflict.
No two people are exactly alike, so some conflict is always going to be inevitable. And that's okay! Mamako is a good enough mom to recognize this, and she's also good enough to recognize that sometimes you just have to roll with the punches. Nothing is going to stop teens from acting out, so as a parent, you have to wield some of the thick skin and perspective that your kids currently lack. Raising another human being isn't easy, and this is actually a rich subject for a show to explore. Do You Love Your Mom errs on the side of simplicity, however, so I wouldn't expect it to dig too deep into the complexities of parenting. Still, the episode provides a nice visual metaphor for the battles many moms have to fight—often thanklessly—so I can't begrudge a kind gesture of anime gratitude toward good moms everywhere.
Mamako also loses her clothes again. At least this time the party experiences some equal-opportunity unintentional nudity, with even Masato finding himself in his skivvies after stepping on the trap tile. It barely feels worth mentioning, however, because at this point, Mamako in her normal underwear is downright tame compared to some of the other situations the show has put her in. Honestly, it's an improvement in that sense. The series still makes way too much of a point about this grossing Masato out, but I can live with some vanilla mom cheesecake. In contrast, the rest of the guild's moms are bestowed with some sweet heavy armor to help protect them from the everyday slings and arrows of raising their large adult sons (and presumably other children of all sizes, ages, and genders). The armor is admittedly a neat visual metaphor for how tough moms can be, but I'm mostly bringing this up so I can praise the awful “mom-or” pun. Porta is the one who blurts this out, of course, because Porta has been nothing but a delightful ray of sunshine in this perpetual den of mom sin.
With the entirety of her rebellion having run back home to their mommies (in a good way), only Amante remains to follow through with her anti-mom crusade. Her goal is to literally erase all moms from existence using the wish the tower will grant. I'm not quite sure how that would pan out in reality, but I am sure that the next episode will wrap up her arc along with this cour of Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks? I think it's safe to say this anime did not pan out to be the transformative gamer mom isekai I was hoping for, but I'm open to the finale surprising me.
Steve is lost in space, but he can still stream anime so it's okay. A communications relay has been established on his Twitter.
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