Mawaru Penguin Drum 4 ~ fabulous max
July 30, 2011
Episode 4 of Mawaru Penguin Drum upsets the apple cart, well… let’s just say it shook up the formula in some ways, while giving free reign to Ringo’s delusions. In the process we (and Shouma) get to watch Ringo’s “magic” diary in action. We also get introduced to a new faction?!?
Kanba “has other things to do”, so he sends his brother to watch over Ringo on her birdwatching trip, with instructions to snoop in her purse. This finally puts Shouma in the position to see her diary, and also see that there are entries (time-stamped!) before the events occur.
In most cases, the events predicted in Ringo’s diary only can be said to have come true in a very literal sense, but the spirit with which Ringo interprets the words has been abandoned. We already saw that when she insisted that everything went “according to plan” when Tabuki ate her curry, even though she wasn’t there to eat it with him. Several similar things happen this week. Notably we never see Ringo writing in the diary (only stamping it complete, as before), but we aren’t given a peek into any other days, so we still don’t know if she is writing these entries herself, or acquired the diary with the entries already filled. Two things that lead toward the latter interpretation: Ringo apologizes to her mother for not fulfilling her destiny (might this mean that she inherited the penguin drum from her mother?), and the chilling attack at the end (why on Earth would Ringo have chosen to write that herself?).
Unfortunately for Ringo, the blonde she met at Tabuki’s apartment is still hanging around, and she has the sort of star power that makes for tough competition. Perhaps even more disturbing, Yuri tells Ringo flat out that she knows what is going on, and that Ringo might as well give up. I doubt Ringo will give up easily, because she is a delusional stalker with a magical diary, but any sane girl would have to acknowledge defeat.
Kanba was warned many times by Shouma that his womanizing would lead to trouble. Well, it looks like he finally walked into it. Oddly the woman in the middle of the trio (the one with long black hair) ends up targeted by the Penguin Drum. This act of violence in particular makes me wonder if Ringo is really controlling the Penguin Drum, or is merely it’s foolish slave.
Another great episode. Mawaru Penguin Drum continues to please. I really enjoyed the cut-out puppet theater segments, but the deeper issues, such as the mystery of the penguin drum, and the unexpected violence, really keep this show engaging.