by Richard Eisenbeis,
How would you rate episode 7 of
In which our two heroines meet.
Of everything we've seen so far, this is the first episode that truly feels like filler. After recovering from the injuries received in their brief fight with the abyssal hands, Hina and Licht are walking through a nearby town when Lynn suddenly shows up. Lynn, being the kind soul she is, thanks Licht for saving her life a few episodes back—and then promptly tries to arrest him.
Of course, Lynn being Lynn, she then gets distracted by seeing Licht with a new female companion which leads directly to…
A cooking contest.
While it's not hard to see that this is a distraction set up by Nana to prevent Licht's arrest (and/or a fight in the middle of town) it's also a way for her to force Licht to face his problems rather than simply run away from them.
Although Nana tries to frame it as two girls fighting for Licht's love, Hina objects to that. To Hina, the most important thing is that Licht is depressed and she thinks a good meal should cheer him up—an unsurprising viewpoint for a girl who has only had the simplest things in life. Thus giving him two meals filled with love will be sure to do the trick.
So the girls set about their work. Lynn goes to the market and gets everything she needs as her kindness and respect for everyone shines through. Hina, on the other hand, is so used to being self-sufficient that she just heads to the surrounding woods, gathers some mushrooms, kills a bear and boar with nothing but a rope and a skinning knife, and drags the corpses back to town.
This scene—while obviously comedic—serves to show the key difference between Hina and Lynn: while both are kind to a fault, Hina has lived a solitary existence. Lynn has not. Perhaps this is why Licht is so drawn to Hina and why he didn't run from her when he had the chance at the start of the episode. They are both quite lonely and find some solace in each other.
As the contest continues, it devolves into little more than a series of rom-com clichés with Lynn's food looking normal and Hina's like it could kill a man. Pele even shows up suddenly because he can't miss out on any event where Lynn is set to crash and burn.
Then, just before Licht has to say whose cooking is better, Jail shows up and the two fight a bit in the middle of town—before Nana verbally browbeats them into no longer fighting. From there all it takes is a copious amount of booze to leave Jail, Lynn, and Pele left passed out in the town square while Nana, Licht, and Hina make their escape.
Suffice it to say, very little happens in this episode. While this is ostensibly the first meeting of our two heroines, they actually say little to each other. They don't even get the chance to listen and react to each other's experiences with Licht. Instead, they're thrown straight into the cooking comedy bit. And while we do get some pieces of character development here and there, this is the first episode that I feel could be entirely skipped with next to nothing lost in the overall story.
• “Pudding and I… Well, in Homburg, we dated and..” Good old Lynn, always focusing on the positives instead of the fact that Licht is a dangerous, violent criminal.
• “Licht and I are traveling together, and… he looks up my skirt...” Five points to Hina for the aptest description of Licht so far.
• I'm not sure I understand Jail's plan here. Why send Lynn and Pele into town when your only goal is to fight Licht at full power by yourself?
• Did Jail's count go down again when Nana stopped the fight? Cuz she pretty handily shattered his conviction about having a no-holds-barred fight in the middle of town.
• Just imagine Jail trying to report the events of this episode to his superiors. It's funnier than anything in this episode.
• Hina is actually quite strong when it comes to dealing with nature. It's people that she doesn't know how to deal with.
• The only people to try Hina's soup are Licht and Pele. While both treat it as delicious, I can't help but wonder if they were lying—Licht to spare Hina's feelings and Pele just to mess with Lynn.
Plunderer is currently streaming on FUNimation.
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