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Lycoris Recoil Episode 1 Review – Best In Show

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Lycoris Recoil Episode 1 Review – Quick Summary

In Lycoris Recoil episode 1, “Easy does it,” Takina Inoue had been on a team of Lycoris that had achieved a stalemate against an arms dealer – an arms dealer who had taken one of their own as a hostage. A legendary agent, Chisato Nishikigi, was on the way, but likely would not make it in time. Takina made a command decision: she picked up a heavy machine gun and opened fire. Was that the right call? Did she rescue her fellow agent? And did the scene commander have to say about Takina’s “initiative?”

Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.

Favorite Quote from Lycoris Recoil Episode 1

I think she was honestly confused about her leader’s objection. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

At the beginning of every season, I watch a variety of shows in the hopes of seeing one moment that makes me think, “Yeah, I want to review this one.” This show actually gave me two such moments. It’s like an embarrassment of riches!

The first such moment was when Takina decided she’d had enough waiting for the special agent and with the deteriorating negotiations in general. Now, keep in mind that my knowledge of weapons that come from outside the USA is limited. I’m not an expert even in United States rifles, but I know more about them than the weaponry I saw in this episode. So, I’ll compare it to one of my favorite First Person Shooter games, STALKER: Call of Pripyat.

Takina picked up what looked like an RP-74 machine gun. She pulled back the cocking lever, pointed the rifle at the bad guys, and pulled the trigger. Then she moved the machine gun like a scythe. 

The hostage had been on her knees, so she was below the spray of lead. She survived. The arms dealer and his minions did not. The site commander, a very fussy young woman who took orders seriously, did not appreciate Takina’s initiative. When she tried to criticize Takina, Takina said (03:17), “She’s alive, isn’t she?”

After something like that, how could I not watch this show?

Best in Show Moment for Lycoris Recoil Episode 1

You know, she really did ask nicely! Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Setup: Takina’s Loose Cannon

In my favorite quote, I mentioned that I got not one, but two “Man, I’ve got to review this series” moments. The first one dealt with Takina and her bias for action. The second focuses on the other main character, Chisato Nishikigi.

Chisato had been the special agent en route to the hostage situation. She didn’t quite make it in time, through no fault of her own. I mean, seriously, who mandates that Lycoris have to use a scooter to get to a scene? Talk about penny-wise… She got there just in time to see window glass flying as Takina opened fired. Did Chisato panic and dive for cover? Did she cluck her tongue in disgust? Nope. She laughed appreciatively.

That was my first clue that I was going to like Chisato.

Chisato laughed – she laughed! – as the glass flew. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Takina’s superiors pulled her from front-line duty and assigned her to work with Chisato. At first, I wondered if Chisato was going to have her hands full with Takina. She seemed so happy and upbeat, after all. Nothing like the no-nonsense, focused killer that Takina seemed to be.

I got my first indication that Chisato might be more than that when she and Takina visited the yakuza. Chisato had brought them a bag of coffee. Takina thought it was drugs and moved to draw her sidearm. Chisato casually, even with a smile, stopped her. Was that a fluke?

Then the police asked Chisato and Takina to escort a young woman home. The young woman had accidentally photographed an arms deal in the background of a picture. Chisato had gone home to get her overnight things, trusting Takina to get the young woman to her apartment. But Takina became aware they were being followed and decided to use the young woman as bait. As soon as the men grabbed the young woman and pulled her into the van, Takina opened fire.

Delivery: Chisato’s Up-Beat and Cool Precision

I thought it was cool that when Takina had expended the clip, she ejected the magazine and pulled a new one from a hidden compartment in her school backpack. Cool and creepy at the same time. What kind of government arms students like that?

Chisato reappeared and pulled Takina aside to get an assessment.

“You used your escort as a decoy?” Chisato gasped (18:25).

The men in the van used the lull in flying lead to try to get out and advance. Chisato was right there, in the man’s face, and said (19:10), “Hey, you wanted to make a deal, right?”

The dude fired his sidearm.

In retrospect, I think the gunman might have wanted to reconsider his decision to fire. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

What followed next was a masterclass in the efficient and effective way to put down villains. At first, I didn’t realize she had used non-lethal bullets. Not sure about their physics, but they seemed effective, so I thought her dedication to protecting life — all life — was pretty cool. What I liked even better was what Reddit user Ormusn2o noticed. In a recent post, said:

 just wanted to mention how well researched this anime is. In this scene she holds the gun in close quarters close to her chest, two handed. You do it so that you do not lose control of your weapon, and its a legitimate tactic.

I can’t personally verify that, but that’s exactly how it looked to me. Chisato might be up-beat and charming. But she’s utterly ruthless when it comes to incapacitating bad guys. I had already decided to review the series by this point. This was just icing on the cake.

What do you think of this world? What were your favorite moments in this episode? Feel free to let me know in the comments!

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8 thoughts on “Lycoris Recoil Episode 1 Review – Best In Show

  1. I haven’t watched a single episode in full, but I’m already loving the prospects of this first episode. The concept, the vibe and Takina (a Chitanda clone? 🤯) really pulled me in from the clips I’ve seen.

    Gonna give this series a shot after I complete Anohana.

    1. You know, now that you mention it, Takina does remind me of Chitanda! With much better aim.

      It took me weeks to recover from Anohana! that last episode, man…

      1. Exactly, glad we think alike! XD Very eager to start on this series haha.

        Oh, I’m not surprised that Anohana got you feeling like that. I’m only 5 episodes in however, and I see things are picking up in the midway point…

  2. Thanks to the link back.

    As for the episode itself, it was interesting. Sure, Takina taking the machine gun to get rid of the bad guys to save her friends may seem the right thing, but it’s obvious that the organization doesn’t see this as a good thing. After all, there is probably a reason why they tain orphans for the job, which is kind of suspicious.

    Still, her way of doing things kind of got her into trouble as she supposed to protect the lady, not use her as bait to lure the suspects. It’s good to see them show the big contrast of how Chisato does things compared to her. It makes me interested how Chisato can defrost Takina and change her ways. The cheerful girl and the cold dark haired girl relationships tend to be the most interesting.

    1. It’s only the first episode, and already I like Chisato and Takina’s relationship! I’m a little impressed that Takina has held up so well to Chisato’s relentless enthusiasm!

      The whole orphan thing is very suspicious. The whole Lycoris organization reminds me of Minority Report or other science-fiction dystopias I’ve read. I’m looking forward to seeing what the series does with that theme.

  3. I liked the setup with Chisato…. It’s not clear why her bosses keep her in a box separate from the rest, by it’s clear why they keep her around. And why she’s the answer to “who ya gonna call?”

    1. There’s enough mystery to draw me in — and Chisato’s character is an intoxicating mix of jubilance and cynicism.

Please let me know what you think!

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