You know, there are secret organisations afoot, drugs being traded, human experimentation, and all kinds of weird, but for whatever reason this anime feels that spending an episode dealing with the mentor-student relationship of Mei and Fu is the absolute best thing it can show us. This episode really does make it clear that despite the trappings of a spy story, at heart this one just wants to be a cute girls in a club kind of thing and the only real difference is occasionally they face life threatening situations.
That doesn’t make this bad, but it does mean that the threat and the spy side of this story really aren’t to be taken overly seriously. I mean, who cares about all of the secret agent type stuff when there are household accounts to balance?
If it seems I’m being a little snarky it is probably because I don’t know that either the audience or the characters gained anything from this episode. I mean, sure, Mei and Fu go through a bunch of stuff, end up fighting, after that gets Mei hurt on a mission Fu moves out, but then they reconcile and take down the random token drug dealer Fu had spotted earlier in the episode. Fu realises that her mentor does appreciate her and they all live happily ever…
Wait, why did we need a whole episode to come to that realisation?
I’ve described this show as average, and realistically it still is. But the bottom line is it isn’t a particularly compelling cute girls in a club kind of thing nor is it a very competent story about a team of female spies, so what we’re ending up with is a tepid serving of both genres and it makes for a viewing experience that is kind of good enough but not particularly memorable.
- Episode 1 – Is Eating the Spyces the Same as Releasing the Spyces
- Episode 2 – Preparation is Key
- Episode 3 – It’s All About the Team
- Episode 4 – It’s All About Mei and Fu
- Episode 5 – My Mentor Is Amazing
- Episodes 6 + 7 – Victory for Power of Friendship, Complete Loss For Originality
- Episode 8 – Snakes, Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?
- Episode 9 – The Disastrous Day The Mentor Character Died
- Episode 10 – This Week They Really Spyced Things Up
- Episode 11 – Things are Getting Spycy As Time Runs Out
- Episode 12 – Sugar and Spyce and All Things Nice
6 thoughts on “Release the Spyce Episode 4: It’s All About Mei and Fu”
Baring in mind I can barely remember any of the character names I don’t mind a chance to get to know the main players a bit more – if we don’t, how are we supposed to root for them or care about their plight?
I know what you mean though, I too wondered if we were going to see any action in this episode and it felt a bit like a token gesture throwing it in the last few minutes. I assume this sort of character drama would feel more palatable had it occurred during a mission and not as an adjunct.
I’d be happy to learn about the characters on the go rather than feeling like things have stalled while we ‘do character development’ rather than having it happen at the same time as plot. I will admit though, I didn’t remember Mei’s name until this episode, so I guess it did accomplish that.
Believe it or not I actually agree with you. I was just in the middle of writing my review when your review popped up. Obviously I’m far more forgiving of the show as I have a slight bias for cute girls doing anything but yeah, it’s a shame that (at the moment) it isn’t quite striking the balance between ‘spy show’ and ‘cute girl show’ as much as it could but it might come around!
My notes for Thursday’s entry… much the same. “WTF Spyce? What was the point?”
It is kind of bad when viewers are left wondering why they just watched something or what was gained. And while a fun episode might get away without doing a lot for the plot or characters, this episode was nowhere near fun enough (masochistic drug dealer aside) to actually get away with it. And while it might be argued this was a character drive episode, we really didn’t gain much about the characters either.
Oh my goodness. I think us agreeing only happens about once a season so I’ll savour the moment.
I think though, that even people with a soft spot for cute girls stories will want more than what this show is delivering in that department at the moment. As you said, it might pick up or at least find its balance, but at the moment it is very awkward.