After a rise back to power in the last episode, I wasn’t really expected Panty and Stocking to stay consistent. Asking for consistency in Gainax is like asking a Super Saiyan to power up without yelling: it just doesn’t happen. Fortunately, Episode 5 of Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt takes some serious risks this time around, experimenting considerably in both sequences. Whether it’s by pushing the nastiness quotient to an all-time high or just changing animation styles to fuel a storyline, Episode 5 will be sure to shock you.
Oscar invites Panty and Stocking on one hell of a ride.
The first adventure in Episode 5, “The Runny”, begins with Panty and Stocking relaxing in Daten City, with Stocking eating the newest sweets and Panty enjoying the latest fad: picking your nose. You heard that right. The angels are approached by Oscar H. Genius, a high-class business man who invites the girls on his airship party. After boarding the ship, Stocking eats sweets while Panty is invited to Oscar’s special room. Panty and Oscar perform the odd ritual of nose sex, essentially shoving their boogers into each other’s nose. Panty’s angelic nose gold irritates Oscar’s nasal cavity, revealing the man’s true form as a Ghost. Oscar activates his plan, expanding into a giant floating being composed of the boogers of all of the people in Daten City. His true goal is to crash into the moon using the blood from the people’s noses to accelerate. He spreads a gas that forces everyone to pick their nose uncontrollably. Brief and Garterbelt arrive to the panic, with Brief having a plan to make the Ghost sneeze with some of Panty’s gigantic boogers. Panty and Stocking climb the Ghost, severing the cabin from the accelerating Ghost’s body. After a brief censorship-demanding shot from Panty, the Ghost continues to move towards the moon at high speed. Panty and Stocking rush to stimulate the “nasal G-spot”, with Panty succeeding, leaving Stocking on course with the moon. The last scene leaves Panty parachuting to safety with Stocking engulfed in snot from the moon’s sneeze. Classy stuff.
This episode can easily be compared to the utterly disappointing “Pulp Addiction”
It's exactly what it looks like.
sequence, but this one actually had decent action and good, albeit nauseous humor. Yes, it’s about nose-picking, and the scene of Panty and Oscar’s unusual sexual methods was pretty…well…gross, but unlike “Pulp Addiction”, this joke didn’t saturate the adventure, at least not too much. The battles were solid with some interesting humor in between, and while this episode surely won’t please everybody, it was gross humor without being downright gotta-turn-away intolerable. I laughed more than I cringed. "The Runny" felt more Ren and Stimpy than Powerpuff Girls, focusing more on pushing the boundaries of nastiness than simply using parody (though the moon looks incredibly familiar…are we in Termina?)
The second portion of Episode 5 is “Vomiting Point,” an episode that is bound to get some detractors. Hell, Panty and Stocking aren’t even the stars this time around. Instead we get Terao, a middle-aged employee at a business outside of Daten City. Struggling to make ends meet and keep his family happy, Terao is in a rut, especially with his daughter’s birthday approaching quickly. It seems that his daughter’s birthday wish is to see Panty and Stocking. Terao’s life continues to turn sour, but he is dragged to a local bar by his co-workers, who offer the alcohol-intolerant Terao some drinks. The drinks lead to more drinks until Terao is overpowered, spewing forth gallons and gallons of vomit, all which form a giant amorphous Ghost composed of puke. Terao witnesses the creature in fear and confusion, until Panty and Stocking arrive to stop it. When the angels defeat the Ghost, Terao begs the duo for something that would make his daughter happy. Panty and Stocking offer their autographs to Terao, who succeeds in making his daughter’s birthday a good one. Terao continues to struggle at work, but knows that he’s able to grant his daughter happiness.
The trifecta of disgusting is complete!
“Vomiting Point” showed Gainax’s experimental side, telling a heartfelt story with just enough gross-out humor and over-the-top battles to qualify as a Panty and Stocking adventure. The animation cleverly pokes fun at more serious anime, though I found the giant spew of vomit to oddly enough be reminiscent of Paranoia Agent. The contrast between the traditional Japanese anime design in Terao and the city with the parodical American cartoon design of Panty and Stocking to be clever; very “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?”-esque. The story takes a while to really reach a high point, but it felt just as good as it was experimental. This won’t be an all-time favorite episode to everyone (it wasn’t for me), but it told a cool story and had enough Panty and Stocking battle action to be worth watching.
Episode 5 is most certainly not for everyone. There will be just as many people who hate it that there will be those who love it. I, for one, was relatively divided, but remarkably impressed as well. “The Runny” was a nose-picking jamboree and anyone who thought that Panty and Stocking couldn’t get any weirder will be floored when they see more than half the adventure showing the main characters and extras with their fingers in their noses. It was gross, yeah, but funny and definitely a boundary-pusher. “Vomiting Point” was extremely different, but the uniquely presented story and cool contrast in animation was a surprise worth watching. This is an edgy episode, and while it never reaches the top tier of Panty and Stocking’s repertoire, it does exactly what it promises to do: weird you out, one way or another.