Tokyo Mew Mew New
by Rebecca Silverman,
How would you rate episode 7 of
Tokyo Mew Mew New ?
Community score: 3.8
It's kind of unclear whether or not the Mew Mews are afforded the same identity protections that other magical girls (and in the case of Cute High Earth Defense Club LOVE!, magical boys) are afforded. In case you missed the way that the aforementioned magical boy parody show portrayed it, that basically means that no one can recognize them when they're transformed, despite how close their magical forms may be to their everyday ones – Cute High Earth Defense Club LOVE! lampooned the magical girl staple by pixellating everyone's faces and digitally blurring their voices. Something like Wedding Peach rarely goes to that length, but we typically see ample evidence that the girls are somehow unrecognizable to their families, crushes, friends…everyone, basically. But that's clearly not quite the case for Ichigo, because more than once in this episode, which takes place just after the girls were on national television, someone remarks on how similar Ichigo looks to Mew Ichigo.
I have to give the episode credit: it really does try to keep us guessing about how much Aoyama-kun has figured out for most of its run. And to be perfectly honest, by the end he actually may have figured it out and is putting on a good show for an Ichigo who clearly doesn't want him to have put the pieces together. If nothing else, he's got to have noticed the bell around her neck, but he either doesn't want to believe it or he's having more trouble figuring it out than I would have thought. His panic at the end of the episode doesn't seem fake, but that could just as easily be because Mew Ichigo ran off and he's worried about the toll fighting the evil bees took on Ichigo's regular self as it could be him wanting to make sure that Ichigo escaped when he told her to. Either way, it doesn't look like he'll be shunning her any time soon, which is a nice boost of self-confidence for Ichigo and some reassurance for us that Kish won't turn into her primary love interest. Because – and stop me if I've said this before – Kish sucks.
But luckily for my unrelenting hatred of Kish, it looks like he's going to be in time out for a bit. I can't actually fault the nebulous Big Bad Boss for sidelining Kish, because he really has been more invested in harassing Ichigo than destroying the earth. He's due to be replaced by Pie and Tart (giving all the aliens a baked-in-a-crust theme), and already we can see that Tart has a very different style of attack. For one, he's not using actual aliens, which could wreak havoc with the way the Mew Mews have been fighting, because there's no alien for Masha to clean up and no guarantee that Mew Ichigo (or whomever) has actually taken care of the infectious element for good. But Tart's personality could create more problems as well, because he's much more analytical than Kish, and therefore could spend a lot more time planning out his attacks. The mere fact that he went right for bees says that he might be more calculating than Kish, because he's not only chosen an animal base with a dagger on its behind, he's also picked one that plenty of people are allergic to or afraid of. It's also a vastly important piece of the ecosystem in a way that most people are aware of, so he's really covering all of his bases, something that it rarely feels like Kish did. Kish goes for the quick and vicious, whereas Tart is a planner, which may not be great in someone you have to fight.
We don't know what Pie's deal is yet, nor do we know if we'll find out next week. On the plus side, it looks like Lettuce is going to be the focus girl for the next episode, which frankly feels long overdue – Ichigo as the main heroine has gotten the bulk of the episodes, with Mint and Zakuro coming in a close second, and Bu-ling frankly steals the scene any chance she gets. But Lettuce has been hovering quietly in the background, so here's hoping that next week she finally gets her chance to shine.
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