Sengoku Basara, episode 5 – All thriller, no filler

Back to the action in this episode. Unfortunately, there’s no new tricks this time around – unless you count Honda the samurai Gundam – but there’s plenty of old favorites to enjoy. And the wait continues for both Kenshin and Nobunaga to get in the action.

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Massive numbers of soldiers only exist to be blown up.

Takeda’s last ditch effort to get Tokugawa to renounce his alliance with Nobunaga fails, and thus after a couple episodes of exposition, the battle begins. On one side is Takeda and Kenshin. On the other is Tokugawa, who (falsely) believes Nobunaga will support him with some literal firepower. And somewhere in between is Masamune, who’s “alliance” with Takeda and Kenshin only exists in that they’re all trying to kill Nobunaga, and Azai, the sad sack husband of the wet blanket, who’s clearly going to get screwed over by Nobunaga regardless of what he ends up dong.

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I lol’d at Hondam’s Gundam launch sequence, and then Kenshin’s “first squadron” leader immediately getting Patrick Corlasaur’d. Where’s Kati? These little comedic bits really make Segoku Basara that much more amusing.

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The battles aren’t as nicely animated as some of the battles in the first couple episodes, but they’re still very well done. Lots of movement, lots of style and a real good sense of brutality and epic-ness. Whether it’s Sanada becoming a red fiery ball, or Takeda creating tornados, even when it feels a little familiar, it’s still a blast to watch. I guess they’ll never get to the point of tossing whole galaxies at each other, but I at least want to see Nobunaga eventually blast a mountain in half and destroy an enemy battalion by tossing it onto the battlefield. They’ve whetted my appetite for destruction, now I want more, more, MOAR!

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While Takeda, Sanada and Kenshin’s troops (unfortunately no in-battle Kasuga ninjagasm) take on Tokugawa’s forces, Masamune finds himself in a showdown with Azai, who actually when not getting bitched around by Nobunaga or put in crap situations by his dojikko wife, turns out to be a pretty good fighter. However, their fight takes a turn for the dour when Nobunaga shows up with his own personal vanguard of evil music, thunder, lightning and dark, foreboding clouds. His right hand man, Mitsuhide has redirected the riflemen from supporting Tokugawa to taking out Masamune. However, that requires them to shoot past or through Azai. Interestingly, Nobunaga is not pleased with Mitsuhide’s independent streak. Whether it’s because Nobunaga has some honor and isn’t keen to the idea of double-crossing Azai, or whether he just doesn’t like subordinates not following his orders, is up for debate. The episode ends with Azai getting shot in the head and a cut away before we can see what happened to Masamune (definitely alive) or Kojuurou (possible death?).

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Couple quick thoughts on a couple scenes I thought felt off.

First scene: Sanada sees the face of the enemy – and the humanity behind it – and freezes. They’ve been pointing towards Sanada becoming a more thoughtful character vs. the hothead he is right now – what with him having the talks beatings from Takeda. But I find it hard to believe that a battle-tested warrior like Sanada would freeze at a moment like that. There’s a time for reflection. It’s not on the battlefield. Freezing was a rookie move. And definitely not what I’d expect from Sanada. Score one for misplaced drama.

Second scene: the final scene. It seemed too heavy handed, what with the slow motion blood splatter, etc. We know Nobunaga’s not a good guy. And Azai seemed destined to become Nobunaga mincemeat, so Azai getting shot in the head was no surprise. No need to over-dramatize it. The show’s better when it’s not taking itself too seriously.

2 Replies to “Sengoku Basara, episode 5 – All thriller, no filler”

  1. …Azai, who actually when not getting bitched around by Nobunaga or put in crap situations by his dojikko wife, turns out to be a pretty good fighter

    That’s true. It’s a shame that he had to die (or that’s what it looks like at least). I personally think his brawl with Masamune was the best fight sequence of the episode…since they actually made their ultimate moves known to audience very clearly.

    7’s last blog post..Alchemical Inconsistencies – Excluded Projectile Mechanism

    1. I actually hope they have a leveled up ultimate move for each of the main guys waiting to be revealed. With more than half a season left, I gotta think they’ve a few more tricks up their sleeves.

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