Queen’s Blade 8
After days of traveling through the harsh lands, climbing treacherous mountains, crossing arid deserts and encountering many dangerous monsters, Tomoe and Shizuka arrive near a mountainous region with many hot springs abound.
Deciding to use this chance to take some well deserved rest after their perilous voyage, Tomoe and Shizuka enter the hot springs to indulge in some relaxing bathing.
Unbeknown to them, Elina Vance is nearby with her convoy. About to set up camp for the night, Elina instructs her aid Irma to go ahead and prepare everything.
Overhearing one of her soldiers talk about the hot springs, an ecstatic Elina quickly heads off by herself to take a dip in the water.
Hearing others approach, Shizuka asks Tomoe to keep out of sight and dashes off.
Spying Elina on her way to the water pool where Tomoe is bathing, Shizuka tries to intervene but is herself discovered by Irma.
Although clad in maid clothes, Irma turns out to be a fearsome opponent. Facing the maid turned lethal assassin with all her might, Shizuka is shocked when she learns that Irma is actually working under orders of the reigning queen Ardra, sent out to surreptitiously intercept any serious contenders for the “Queen’s Blade” tournament.
Thinking of Tomoe, Shizuka is distracted and overpowered by Irma.
Meanwhile, Elina has found Tomoe bathing in the hot springs and true to her tomboyish yet spoiled rotten self, she chases Tomoe from the water, claiming it to be her property being a daughter of Count Vance.
Hearing the Vance name, Tomoe wonders if Elina is related to Reina, which the blonde warrior confirms. Recognizing the priestess as the one who previously fought Reina, Elina demands Tomoe fight her as well.
Not one to let such childish behaviour affect her, Tomoe refuses Elina’s request for battle and walks away, leaving a very frustrated Elina behind.
Regaining consciousness after having been defeated by Irma, Shizuka finds herself tightly bound to a rocky boulder, with Irma looming over her.
The kunoichi confronts the deceptive assassin regarding her allegiance to Ardra but Irma silences the defenseless ninja with a barrage of punches, causing the battered Shizuka to loose consciousness again.
Darkness falls and Tomoe frantically looks for Shizuka, she is lured to the spot where the kunoichi hangs bound to a rock by Irma, who had donned her maid disguise once more.
Although wanting to save her friend, Tomoe dares not attack when Irma holds a sword at Shizuka’s throat. Threatening to kill the kunoichi if Tomoe does not obey, Irma forces the priestess to not only lay down her sword but also to undress, much to the gentle miko’s shame.
Tears streaming down her cheeks at her own shame and despair, Tomoe remembers the words of her dying comrades back when the miko temple was attacked and she regains her composure.
Declaring she will still fight, Tomoe and Irma are surprised when the angel Hachi appears and declares their will to fight now results in a “Queen’s Blade” match between them.
Knowing the match broadcast will reveal her real identity to the world, Irma realizes she’s in trouble and frantically attacks Tomoe. Seemingly even matched at first, Irma manages to knock away Tomoe’s katana.
As Irma moves in to deliver a fatal strike, Tomoe is saved in the nick of time when a partially freed Shizuka throws her katana back to her.
Launching a powerful attack as the moon light refracted from her sword blinds Irma, Tomoe strikes the assassin down and wins the match.
Injured and her identity revealed, Irma is able to escape only because Tomoe rushes to free Shizuka, tightly hugging her dear friend.
Oblivious to all that transpired, Elina is sulking in her tent, wondering where her cook is off to as she laments her empty stomach.
At Count Vance’s castle, Clodette who remains haunted by Reina’s words, confronts her father. Rebelling against his command, Clodette sets off by herself, determined to participate in the “Queen’s Blade” tournament to once again face Reina in battle.
After last week’s rather lengthy hot springs scene we were treated this week to… another hot springs scene.
While it contained copious amounts of not always expertly well drawn sizable bare bosoms, I found it a lot less distracting this week. Mostly because of the emphasis this time on the difference in character between Shizuka and Tomoe was illustrated by their appearance and behaviour while bathing, especially in Tomoe’s sitting posture and her remaining partially clothed.
Her more refined and lady-like behaviour was also quite offset against Elina, who even as a Count’s daughter showed no shame nor finesse, acting like a true brat, which led to funny scenes.
A more ordinary episode overall with as highlight finally seeing some focus again on Tomoe and Shizuka, who are as always a very interesting pair and provide ample laughs or their strong bond which with the slightest implicit suggestion is enough to cause dreams of mutual yuri love between them.
Shizuka being voiced by Hitomi Nabatame, who also did Kanade in “Candy☆Boy”, I can’t help but always see yuri undertones in Shizuka and Tomoe’s relationship. I’m sure no one would mind though.
With Nanael now permanently glued to Reina since she’s tasked to follow her, I have no doubt we’ll get more humor and verbal banter between those two as well in future episodes.
Worthy to note the very skillful weapon strikes made by Irma and Shizuka which expertly slashed through each other’s clothing to denude their respective bosoms. One could wonder what type of ninja or other training prepares one in expertly performing such high precision strikes to cause clothing malfunctions.
If there’s a course available somewhere to to master this skill, I must certainly register for it!
Actually wonder if this week’s episode had the same director, writer or so as the first one, since we were treated to some bondage and Shizuka wetting herself as she looses consciousness, much like we saw with Reina in the first episode.
Surely to please fans of such special tastes but not my personal taste at all. I guess they just want to cater to all possible audiences?
Was pleased to see they did include the more realistic touch of showing Irma having incurred a significant injury to her back after Tomoe struck her down.
Next week we’ll see the appearance of Ymir and Cattleya.