Recap: The girls practice their summoning techniques and everything is fine and dandy until Asuka steps up to the plate. Turns out something totally silly is preventing her summon and the girls take it upon themselves to help her deal with and overcome it.
Timmy’s thoughts: So its summoning week on Senran Kagura, were we are privileged with seeing all the awesome summon animals the girls have. Ikaruga, Katsuragi and Yagyu go first and all dramatically summon a phoenix, dragon, and giant squid respectively. Hibari is next and, after some effort, she proceeds to
crap out summon and go for a rather bouncy romp through the forest atop a giant pink rabbit. Asuka is then up but all her efforts to produce anything end up in vain. She feels a little better about it after she gets a surprisingly tame pep talk in the showers. If that makes you worry, don’t fret, there is plenty of horse play and bikini clad antics in the inflatable pools that they just happen to have in there to make up for it.
We come to find out the next day thanks to a chance encounter, that Asuka has an irrational fear of frogs. To be fair these frogs seem awfully attracted to crawling down shirts and up skirts so I would be a bit paranoid of them as well. Asuka’s gramps decides to drop by and spread some more sushi roll love amongst the girls as well as some knowledge. As luck would have it, Asuka’s family’s summon animal happens to be a toad and her fear is preventing her from being able to summon it, so the girls band together and task themselves with helping her overcome her ranidaphobia.
Gramps also exposes who is behind the recent aggressive activity as of late and foreshadows troubling times for our girls to come. This is reinforced by a scene with the antiheroes and Yomi showing up to challenge Ikaruga and Asuka at the end of the episode.
Overall Senran hasn’t changed much. There are still schoolgirl ninjas, they still have boobs which still get groped on occasion, and it is still genuinely carefree and funny (and occasionally even phunny.) Of particular note is how much fun they seem to be having with the source material In Asuka’s summoning scene, for instance, Katsuragi randomly produces and in the next shot equips a bunny girl outfit. It is left to the viewer to connect this to the fact that the games have an exhausting amount of clothing options, and characters wearing bunny girl outfits because, well, bunny girl outfits, isn’t that far fetched in this universe. Senran Kagura remains a lot of mindless fun to watch and it will be interesting to see if it stays that way as the plot begins to get a bit more serious.