Posted by psgels on 28 January 2012 with categories: Mouretsu Pirates

So, I was ready to sit back and relax while watching the next installment of the quietly paced Mouretsu Pirates. And then they come with this.

This was a very pleasant surprise: the entire episode was just nothing but a long string of dialogue, full of technical terms and concepts that explained what was going on, and what could be done against it. A ghost ship suddenly appeared, and what in particular caught my attention was how thorough the lead character was in trying to find something against it.

I like how you really need to pay attention to follow everything in this episode. This episode actually showed, against all my expectations, that the creators don’t consider their viewers to be idiots. And while at first this episode may seem to have a lot of techno-babble, it does all fit together with the rest of the theories that it has presented so far. I did not expect to get so much hard sci-fi in this series, but it’s a very pleasant surprise nonetheless. And on top of that this episode also delivered some really good characterization on the captain and vice-captain of the yacht club.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

10 Responses

  1. imredjimmy says:

    I was still a little bored by the episode (less then with episode 3). They just don’t give me enough reason to care yet, although the characterization of the captian and vice-captain was a nice addition. It helps seeing the difference between all those girls.

  2. jzar says:

    This is one of my favorite shows…..I really like what they are doing with the story and they keep the characters acting within reason.

    I thought the writing gave a very intelligent portrayal of what space warfare might be like. I also dug that the students and teachers spy on each other….too cool.

    I can’t wait for the next one.

  3. kero says:

    I enjoyed it, although it wasn’t chock full of battles and excitement. Hope that it kicks up a gear for next episode!

  4. David A. Young says:

    When I think of “techno-babble,” I think of the way Star Trek writers (and others) tend to make up new technologies or science on-the-fly to get themselves out of situations that their poor plotting has boxed them into. On the other hand, almost everything in this episode was quite well understood technology, even by today’s standards. It was the strategic and tactical discussions that were complex and involved. Absolutely cool! Color me impressed!

    • Oroboros says:

      Correct. Lazy writers also misuse the word “technobabble” as a catch-all term for scifi physics whereas it only applies to excuses for bad writing.

      Good episode, solid build up that will pay off later with realistic character development

  5. c160 says:

    Though others are getting bored out of their mind with this show, I really like it. My favorite show of this season.

  6. Stellvia says:

    I generally like large space opera type stories anyway, so the slow pacing hasn’t bothered me so far. It’s nice to have some intelligence behind a sci-fi show for a change. The hard sci-fi stuff and the strategy stuff reminded me of Starship Operators, one of the more realistic portrayals of long-distance space warfare.

  7. Oroboros says:

    Now I wonder whether Mouretsu Pirates is hard scifi, due to its careful observation of plausible science that doesn’t exist today, or a space opera due to its focus on character development set in space/future?

    • David A. Young says:

      Oroboros: I think this show’s on a spectrum between those two labels. It doesn’t pay “quite” enough attention to detail to be classified as “Hard SF,” but it’s certainly way more realistic than something like “Star Wars.” I think they’re trying to give a realistic “feel” to the show while keeping it accessible to a more general audience. (People who expect starts to twinkle, and wouldn’t understand why the airlock doors don’t make any noise when they open.) They’re trying to communicate the important stuff while not worrying about the inconsequential details that might throw off a wider viewership. Maybe you could best call this a “Space Romance.” (As in “Romancing the Stone.”)

  8. RABUJOI says:

    This series is good a preparing and building up. Despite the gun-jumping OP and ED, it would be ludicrous to simply Marika the captain’s chair of a real pirate ship without any training or experience, so she gets that on the Odette II. It’s taking its time to make sure her rise is plausible; a good move.

    We especially like how the pirates are keeping both her and the crew in the dark about the fact this isn’t a true threat, but a test. It’s like leaving out the fact that “this is a drill”, Kane gets to sit back and see how their crew performs when they believe their lives are on the line.

    This episode also does a good job aligning Marika and the Yacht Club’s goals: she has to prove herself as pirate material – and I think her performance this week is most impressive – and the club wants to solve their own problems without running to the adults for help, lest they forbid future cruises on the grounds it’s too dangerous.

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  • Bam
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 01:16 AM)
    And read the TV Tokyo story outline that was presented by the Eva Committee and see how much of the story was perfectly planned from the beginning and that aside from some religious imagery cake-dressings the core themes were already preset from the initial phase and not straw-grasping by observant fans.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 01:11 AM)
    @Aidan: That’s generally the criticism I hear of Nasu fans, great to see they cope by passing it on to other works. It’s exactly what Evangelion ‘did’ that makes it one of the best, and what it did was to deconstruct the whole medium and introduce themes and styles of story presentation that were new to the genre. Its legacy is the effect of its greatness, not the cause.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 01:06 AM)
    *always
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 01:05 AM)
    @jerkocaust: you award has the choice to stop watching a any point, that’s on you.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 01:01 AM)
    I despise the act of covering for a shows flaws by saying of symbolic and psychological crap that could just be pure coincidence and not even creator intent.
    We aren’t denying Evangelion influenced the industry but Bam if it’s going to be hailed as one of the best anime of all time then it’s what it did that matters. Not what it inspired.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 12:58 AM)
    “Now the characters are emotionally a bit blank because that’s what Anno wanted. To show the mental isolation of the protagonist they needed to keep him separated and tormented.”
    Or…it’s poor characterization. Seriously you are giving Anno way too much credit.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 12:40 AM)
    Okay, random boring fact (and showing of my nerdiness) apparently Robin William’s was an Eva fan, there is also an Eva refererence in the film one hour photo.
    And while on the subject of anime/manga references in films Buronsons sanctuary is referenced in The fifth element.
  • jerkocaust
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 12:38 AM)
    @Ham lol no its more like im too balls deep after all these years to stop exactly because ill feel like ive completely wasted my time. How stupid u r
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 12:37 AM)
    I kind of feel sorry for Moyoco Anno though living with him through his mental illness, I also question, always have wondered what the source of Hideki Anno’s depression had been, was he simply born bipolar? Or was it an event?
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 12:33 AM)
    And jerkocaust, m8, if you have followed the series for years as you mentioned you both:
    a) apparently have as much leisure time as me, or perhaps more, which is ok and sign of prosperity.
    b) you are also interested enough in the Eva series to keep following it so far afterrall these yaears. So it has grabbed your attention and mentally engaged you, which is what art’s meant to do.

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