The 19th episode of Pirates isn’t particularly tied to any particular storyline, rather it is more about recovering from the last arc before going to the next one. With some time to relax, Marika decides instead to split time between club duties cleaning the Odette II and cleaning the Bentenmaru on her own. This has disastrous effects on her personally as she struggles to do both by her self and in the process loses the master key to the Bentenmaru. Fortunately, like with everything in this show, everything works out in the end yet again.
This episode could easily be called transitional in nature, but to what exactly? Anyway, I think the dominant themes in this episode were Grunhilde wanting to get closer to Marika and to her sister at the same time, and Marika’s work ethic. I’ll start with the latter.
Ever since choosing to become a pirate, Marika had turned into a below average student who was constantly exhausted whenever she was in class. It appeared that she had chosen to commit to the piracy and dealing with school whenever she could. Following the last arc, she now had the freedom to go to class and could relax until the crew were allowed out of quarantine. Instead, she chose to use her spare time to clean the Bentenmaru.
That should be seen as an admirable commitment to the cause. Fortunately, there are some consequences that come as a result of her choice to split duties. She is absolutely awful at helping the yacht club in maintaining the Odette II. I think it may have been better if she wasn’t even there to be honest. While she is busy with that, she loses the master key to the Bentenmaru. While in the other half of her duty, she makes a hash of cleaning up as well as leaving it entirely unlocked. It would have just been nice for her to realize that resting was one of her duties as a captain too. Unfortunately, it seemed like there wasn’t a lesson learned here because she will always be bailed out by someone.
As for Grunhilde, there was a lot of character development for her in this episode. It began as she felt somewhat left out by the fact that Gruier wanted to accompany Marika on more piracy when it was possible. It also didn’t help her feel any better when Gruier talked about a fated bond she had with Marika’s father through the ring he gave her. In fact, it would probably be fair to say that Grunhilde was being dragged along on her sister’s quest to get closer to Marika because she wanted to be closer to her sister. However, she had not been able to experience that same bond Gruier had with Marika.
Fortunately, Marika herself intervenes by dropping the ring, and Grunhilde is there to claim it out of the air. She disappears with it for a couple of days before she white knights in to save the Bentenmaru and its crew from trouble. Hell, she even pilots the fighter that Jenny stole 2 episodes ago to do it. Only after Grunhilde describes what happened does Gruier say that Grunhilde is now part of the bond with Marika and Marika’s father. I guess she earned it, but it was probably a little unfair to exclude her to begin with.
As for other points of interest in this episode, there was Sandaime’s stuffed bear collection. This was curious as there was never any indication before. Also, Ririka slyly refusing to give up the recipe because she really knew where it was was good as well. There was also poor Kane being harassed into returning to the yacht club to be it’s advisor. The man just wants to be a pirate, not a babysitter again.
Next week, it looks like a beach episode. Sure there’s some plot involved in a challenge of sorts, but it’s a beach episode no matter how much it may try to be anything else. Why must it be so hard for them to return to the piracy again?