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Watch & Learn: CLAYMORE #17

Take a seat and cross your legs for a martial arts procedural.

If you'd REALLY want to further the Oz comparison from last episode, I suppose this would be Ozma... from hell.
If you'd REALLY want to further the Oz comparison from last episode, I suppose this would be Ozma... from hell.

Outside of maybe THE 36th CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN, this might be the first martial arts procedural I’ve ever come across. That descriptor usually only applies to cop shows, ‘cause you know the real appeal isn’t in the mystery, it’s in watching the cops breaking down all the nitty gritty details of their fingerprint tracking and their ballistics reports. Here, it’s the Claymores verbalizing their respective techniques as they put the work, sweat and thought into killing a monster.

Oddly enough, for as show as over-the-top as this, there’s actually some measure of real world basis to some of these ladies’ attacks. Coiling your muscles is several kinds of impossible, sure, but the notion does reflect the principle of strikes getting more power from centrifugal force. You know, a cross with twisting shoulders behind it’s going to have more power than a straight-on jab. I learned that in boxing and, by the same token, I see similarities between Clare’s quick-sword gimmick and the principles of Eskrima. That’s a Filipino stick fighting system that I’ve dabbled in a little, and in advocates using a barrage of small, quick attacks over big haymakers. You actually do more damage that way.

The more you know, right?

I’ve gone on such a “shop talk” tangent because, well, the majority of this episode is concerned with this stuff. I’d expect that this would be the point that’d finally turn off the viewers who’re normally alienated by shonen’s obsession with all the minute particulars of combat. Normally, I’d be right there objecting with them, but there you go - - there's another normally-egregious thing that CLAYMORE’s somehow able to make work.

Plot wise, I’m wondering if Clare and her new pal may eventually be returning to Riful about the alliance they’ve so quickly rejected here. The lil’ demon clearly seems to like them. If the king of North and Priscilla end up proving to be an unstoppable tag team, is there even going to be any downside to allying with her? It’s not like they’re got any bridges left to burn with the organization.

Watch this episode "The Witch's Maw (Part 3)" below, decide for yourself and then read my comments on the previous episode here.

Tom Pinchuk’s the writer of HYBRID BASTARDS! & UNIMAGINABLE. Order them on Amazon here & here. Follow him on Twitter: @tompinchuk

EganTheVile1on Aug. 28, 2011 at 11:15 p.m.
No alliance with Riful Tom, her role in the anime is over
sotyfan16on Aug. 29, 2011 at 12:36 p.m.
You certainly dig deep into details. I never even thought about the intricacies of the way the Claymores fight. I know basics but you win.
Lurkeroon Aug. 29, 2011 at 1:13 p.m.
Another trope Claymore managed to make me overlook while I was watching it. The Claymores spend part of the battle explaining their techniques and strategy just like in shonen anime, but I can't remember being annoyed by it. In shows like Bleach and Naruto its so blatant that I'm instantly annoyed.

Dig Deeper into Claymore

Based on manga of same name, Claymore tells story of Claymores, female warriors with sad fate to hunt the beings known as Yoma.

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