By VIR on December 24, 2012No comments
This week’s episode of Smile Precure! – entitled Stand Strong! Nao’s Precious Bonds with Her Family!! – starts off with surprising news: Nao’s mother is pregnant and is going to the hospital to give birth! Nao is left in control of her five siblings while her parents are away.
When then change over to the Bad End Kingdom. As to not leave Majorina out of the proceedings, Joker threatens her similarly to Wolfrun and Aka Oni: Master Pierrot is angry, and if she does not defeat a Precure, she will die by his hands.
To make today special, Nao wants to make her Mom’s special curry for her and her siblings, so they all go to the store to buy ingredients. Upon arriving home again, Nao realizes that she forgot apples, the special ingredient for the curry. It’s too late to go back out, but two of her siblings decide to leave and get the apples themselves for Nao… without telling anyone.
Let the story/heartbreak begin.
Nao realizes they are missing, and she and the rest of her siblings run out to find them in a frantic panic. Unfortunately, Majorina finds them first and tricks the two children into accepting one of her apples; this apple proceeds to trap the children in an apple prison.
Nao and her siblings find Majorina, and Nao demands that she let her siblings go. Nao reluctantly henshins into Cure March even though she is in front of her siblings and proceeds to fight Majorina, who at this point has taken the apple prison and changed it into a Hyper Akanbe! This devilish act keeps Cure March from attacking the Akanbe for the fear of hurting her siblings trapped inside! What will she do?!
Naturally, Nao goes on the defensive and get pummeled quite incessantly; however, when her siblings are put into the direct line of fire by Majorina, March summons the power of the Smile Pact and powers up, saying that she will always protect her family!
A raucous fight erupts!
Running out of power, a lull in the fight happens. Majorina finds her opening and fires a bolt at Nao’s unprotected siblings! And it hits them! Majorina scoffs in hatred and Nao is beyond broken. Her precious family is… gone.
But, no! Her friends made it just in time to protect them! Using the power of the Royal Clock, they all come together and defeat the Hyper Akanbe. The day is saved, Nao’s family is safe, and Majorina leaves to face her fate.
The episode ends with Nao, her family, and her friends all at the hospital to welcome her new sister. Nao is confident that she can protect her family and that her most precious treasure is safe.
Yay! More Nao episodes!
Yay! More heartbreaking episodes!
This episode was pretty solid. Though this was a Nao episode and a family centric episode, I found myself not getting terribly sucked into what was happening; the writing wasn’t necessarily up to par as the last two were, but it got the job done.
Firstly, we once again get to see Joker’s threats placed on another Bad Ender. He actually starts off the conversation with “You haven’t seen Wolfrun and Aka Oni lately.” At this point – until noted otherwise – I assume they are totally dead or incapacitated in some fashion. He promises that if Majorina does not complete her task that she will die; this is cemented by the following scene:
This just floats up from the cauldron! WAT?!
I think that all my theories are true: the Bad Enders are totally getting killed by Joker… but we’ll see.
Speaking of Majorina, we really get to see her evil side come out (not that she wasn’t the most evil to begin with). She was perfectly fine with killing little kids and rubbing it right in Nao’s face. Pretty nasty…
The emotional impact of this episode had the potential to be great; I mean, family and the attacks directed towards them?! That’s grade A stuff right there!
However, I wasn’t really brought in to the situation on an emotional level. The writing was very quickly paced – prolly because there were six characters on screen at every moment – and didn’t have enough depth or concentration to really bring out my care. I wanted this to be me:
Alas, the episode couldn’t pull it off, most likely due to a couple of reasons:
The writing couldn’t produce a situation that felt natural i.e. the introduction of the pregnant plot was so suddenly introduced it was immediately forgotten. I’m not sure if we knew that Nao’s mom was pregnant before this episode, but it still felt blind-sided.
Also, though we got to see and explore Nao’s family again, there being so little connection and time spent with them before, I couldn’t garner any real feelings or caring towards what was going on; they were all just characters that kinda came from out of the wood-work and we were supposed to care what happened.
Just didn’t work for me.
However, on the flipside, it was very nice to see more of Nao’s family, especially since her family is about the only one we ever get to learn about.
And the fight. The shortest and least impactful so far, we still got the status-quo of the past fights so far in the end game portion of the show: it was ferocious; it was hard-hitting; it involved loss. Once again, the punches were hard and the fight was pretty explosive; it was a good fight that felt powered by dedication and fervor.
Also, the faces of the combatants held quite their fair share of rage and ferocity:
Though this episode did not annihilate me as I had hoped, we really got to see a lot of good things for Nao’s character. The situation presented was appropriate and everything went smoothly. There could have been more development –either in this episode or in previous ones – and the writing could have tried better to develop the plot, but the end game is that much closer with this episode.
Stay tuned for more!