I was going to cover last week’s episode of GARO: The Animation, but then I realized I don’t have a lot to say about episode 20 of GARO: The Animation. It wasn’t as good as episode 19, which is not saying much because episode 19 was one of the best 23-odd minutes of anime Kobayashi ever wrote. Considering she wrote Casshern Sins and Claymore, that’s saying something.
It was good, kinda, but ultimately kind of boring because the focus was on Octavia, Mendoza’s henchwoman and also some other really oddly drawn woman standing around being miserable and spouting Freudian excuses.
It did have Mendoza confirmed as not dead, which was not shocking at all and we all saw coming. But mostly, it had Octavia doing boring stuff and reciting her backstory about her dead imouto or something, sacrificing said really oddly drawn woman who had like 4 minutes of screentime and no characterization so I didn’t bother remembering her name, and León, Alfonso and Ema wandering around accomplishing nothing of note.
Oh yeah, and suddenly in the last two minutes, Germán comes back from his hiatus and I don’t know who is that complete fucking twat and what he did with Germán but anyway finally some follow-up on the “protect Mendooza” thing.
Boom, episode 20 over. Roll credits, Brain! never lose my fooooooocuuuuuuus, la di da di da.
It did have a really good joke, so there’s that.
And so, episode 21 arrives and it was indeed better than episode 21. Still, it’s no episode 18 or 19, but that’s an exceptionally unfair comparison.
First, let me vent some more about Garm, because he has revealed to have shit for brains and a pizdec in the span of three minutes. Well, we all knew he was an complete fucking pizdec but now we know that Garm is an idiot.
Garm’s amazing plan of amazingness is to willfully collaborate with Mendoza, yes the guy who wanted to, you know, slaughter the entire fucking Makai order 17 years before the events of the series in an act of revenge because he didn’t want to man up and insisted on being a fuccboi when confronted about the whole “breaking one of the most sacred Makai codes”. Mendoza thinks that he can control Anima, a giant Horror sleeping deep inside Valiante, and Garm thinks he can work with Mendoza to use its power to kill all Horrors.
Either Garm is under the influence of some seriously strong psychedelics or he has the memory and intelligence of a brain-dead eggplant.
Assuming that somehow Mendoza can control Anima, because controlling gigantic abominations of yore always works so fucking swimmingly every time, does he seriously think that Mendoza will not use it to become the ultimate life form and rule over all? You know, the same Mendoza that tried to slaughter the entire Makai order?
That’s like Lisa Lisa saying Caesar should now protect Kars and give him the Stone of Aja so he can become the Ultimate Life Form as a way to end WWII.
God I hate Garm so fucking much.
But I’m kind of being unfair here. Garm was already a thick, assholish motherfucker in the tokus, so it’s not like it’s something new to the franchise. What would be new is somebody punching him in the face.
There’s also the fact that the Order, as seen in Ema’s flashbacks, are assholes. Ema has a chip on her shoulder for a reason, and Mendoza’s detachment from the human world he was supposed to be protecting didn’t come out of nowhere. There’s also the fact that the damage to the Order means that it makes a twisted amount of sense – their operatives are few, scattered, and having much more difficulty fighting Horrors than they once did.
Which leads back to the whole “You know, the same Mendoza that tried to slaughter the entire Makai order?” business.
The big issue is, never let a guy go through with a plan when he knows that you know what the plan is. Because if he still goes through with it, then that means that he knows something you don’t know, and that means you’re fucked. It’s just bad strategy all around.
Oh, yeah, there was also a fight between Germán and León. It was kind of empty and felt kind of bad because it needed some gravitas and also the music didn’t feel as epic as, say, León vs. Alfonso.
But wait, not all hope was lost. It had a flashback of León training, in which it turns out Germán somehow looks better now that he’s 40 or something than when he was a slender bishonen in his 20s. Maybe it’s just me, who digs Old!Germán’s straightfowardly masculine charm more than Young!Germán’s pretty boy appeal.
It’s kind of really striking how shitty of a father Germán was. Even young, he’d drink and fuck around 7-year-old León like it’s ain’t no thang. I can’t help but think that he, too, is just as devastated (if not even more) than León about Anna’s death, and fucking everything with the slightest hint of estrogen in sight is his way to cope. No wonder León turned out to be so fucked up.
That said, it seems Germán was still medieval Spain Hermes even before he was built like a tank. I wonder how many secret half-brothers León has.
The fight continues after the flashback and suddenly I care a whole lot about it. A flashback is probably a cheap way to add gravitas to a fight scene that has none but the execution here was impeccable.
And yes, Germán beat the shit out of León in the end.
It seems, however, that he left León some nefarious artifact. Maybe he doesn’t like Garm’s plan, either.
We get another flashback of Germán and a glimpse of Mendoza’s plan. He wants to use ANIMA, the PSP to the Horror’s POPstation. This is Anima.
He looks suspiciously like a fetus.
Overall, this was not a bad episode, even though it actively enraged me. But my hatred of Garm comes from way back when GARO was still a toku, so I’m letting this series off the hook for now, and let’s see how this ends.
Also: I, for one, would dig a spin-off where slender bishounen Germán wanders around with León and learns about love, life and maturity. It’d be like Bunny Drop but with decapitations.