As we begin Mai Otome, Volume 7, the world is poised for war; Meister vs Meister, Otome vs Otome, Garderobe and its allies lined up to do battle against Nagi and his forces of Chaos. What do we want most in a situation like this? We want *heroes*! We want the damn cavalry to come thundering down the damn hill and we want it to be shiny, and colorful and we want the horns of Rohan to blow wildly and we want it now.
Boy oh boy do we get that in Volume 7. ^_^
One scene after another, we think we (“we” being the good guys, of course,) have turned the tide in our favor and Nagi pulls yet *another* trick out of his ear, even going so far as to manipulate his own Meister by shooting Sergay and using Nina’s desire to save him to wreak havoc. (His manipulation-fu was a little weak and if Nina hadn’t been such a mopey sop, she might have noticed, but we needed her to just go with it to set up the final confrontation anyway.) Each time calling for yet another triumphant entry of the next wave of the good guys, accompanied by epic background music.
One after another, the Meisters arrive and add their strength to our forces, and time after time, our strength is neutralized until, in a gigantic display of Miyu ex machina all the contracts are cancelled, the Meisters set free and they can *all* take on Nagi’s last-ditch efforts to break toys and pull the wings off of flies.
Of course the world is saved by Arika. Were you worried?
And everyone lives happily ever after, even Tomoe who really should have died horribly. Several times.
Volume 7 also offers a mixed bag of Yuri for our various pleasures. While the volume attains utter fail for Shizuru’s and Natsuki’s completely unromantic and untouchy reunion, we can’t blame them too much, they were both a bit distracted by being in the middle of a war zone. We get a quick retrospective of Shizuru’s playtime with Tomoe (who assumably was a good girl) and for Ers x Nina fans, there’s Erstin’s moving letter to Nina upon which I am sure many a fanfic is based. ^_^ Of course there’s the climax of the whole series where an embrace by Arika brings Nina back from the brink of destruction, and although I am not an Arika x Nina ‘shipper, I know they are out there. Haruka and Yukino continue to be the best manzai government ever. Lastly, but not at all least, there’s Chie’s moving reunion with Aoi. (That’s everyone *I* can think of. I’m sure there are others, so feel free to add in whatever ones you’ve made up in your head to the list of those I’ve made up in mine.)
Mai Otome was never intended to be high art. It was, and remains, a very silly, action comedy-drama with loads of service frosting. A great time for the whole family…assuming your family is like mine. ^_^ (D’oh! I should have watched this with my Dad last time he was here – he would have loved it! Oh well, next time.)
Art – 8
Characters – 8 (We love you Miss Maria, oh yes we do…)
Story – 8
Yuri – 3, but with nuts and candy filling
Service – 5
Overall – 8
And *speaking* of heroes, all my thanks today goes out to the hero of the day, Bruce M, for his sponsorship of this fabulous volume of a lots o’fun anime. (My Dad thanks you too, although he doesn’t know it yet.)