Azur Lane Episode 3: Downtime

As expected, the girls go on a bit of a vacation.

Someone was talking about how the anime adaptation was going to be an origin story for the character Code G, an alternate timeline’s Enterprise fighting with the Sirens, completely of her own free will mind you, who shows up in a couple events in the game. It’s a theory that I give some credence to depending on how much stress Enterprise continues to get in the duration of this show. It would be an incredibly neat way to integrate both anime and game’s plotline together like this.

It’s a bit of a weird episode this one. For a series you’d expect to cash in on its fanservice as hard as this, they decided to more or less half-ass a beach episode, with us having no idea if they’re going to have a proper one or supplement this later on with a bathhouse episode. At the least, we saw swimsuit designs already in the game and from loading screens. At the most we got Lexington’s swimsuit straight of the Queen’s Orders manga and Hornet who got something completely original, which was slightly unexpected given her usual get-up, but hey, more Hornet is a good thing.

Enterprise’s main character status is even more apparent than ever, overworking herself and having an incredibly negative view of her duties and what the ocean means to her. So powerful is her main character aura and its developmental potential that she doesn’t even wear a swimsuit for a swimsuit episode, imagine that. Plot taking precedence to fanservice for the focal character, not even Kancolle managed in keeping its tone like that. This is why people bring up the Code G plotline as Yorktown not being dead, among other named ships who are supposed to be, means that this is already taking place in a completely off-shoot sequence of events different from the games, as if weren’t obvious enough.

The question remains if this sort of series warrants that amount of seriousness, or if said seriousness will have any sort of payoff in the case this isn’t a Code G origin story. The more serious the story wants to be, the higher it props itself up to be done wrong and fall flat on its face like the problems Kancolle’s anime faced. I can at least appreciate the fact that Enterprise had a realization of how Ping Hai and Ning Hai at the end almost mirrored her own mindset so at least this time, I can give Enterprise a pass on this. Not to mention, the music that accompanied her contemplative scenes were actually top notch. Also more props adding to how Vestal, Cleveland, the HMS group, and Belfast are trying to talk Enterprise out of exhausting herself, which didn’t come off as shallow as I was expecting.

Among those who are supposed to have died, Hammann being around for more than expected makes me want to address the ending slide. It doesn’t show everyone but it does show a small cast of the characters and they’re most likely going to be the ones the animation focuses on. However, part of me hopes that the Crimson Axis get their focus too, although, my favoritism as far as in-game units go do HEAVILY lean towards the HMS/USN fleets.

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