Truthfully, I’m starting to think this might’ve been better served as a tighter series with fewer episodes. Maybe 14 or 15. I say that because, out of all the episodes that've dealt with the whole kill-or-don’t-kill conundrum, this was the first one to really go (pun intended) for the jugular. The guy wanting revenge on his daughter's killer, Vash pleading for him to stop, the goon begging for his life and so on… it was so ripe, it made the bad episodes look like the "filler" so many of you lunatics have described.
Still, you watch enough of these and, eventually, some things you’ve once considered to be deficiencies can actually benefit the show. In this case, you could dismiss Vash’s admittedly-inarticulate pleas on account of poor translations, bad writing or the voice actor just not being as invested in the role on this particular day of recording. However, there’s perhaps something more effective to him not seeming to have the rights words; to him not being able to properly express his objections to killing.
FoxxFireArt summed up the arc of this series like like - - the first half establishes Vash as this happy-go-lucky hero who never has to make any hard choices. The second half is then about that carefree morality getting put through the gauntlet. With that in mind, you do get a sense that this heavy dilemma has just intruded on these adventures. It's almost like if, say, POWER RANGERS (which also happens to have Vash's voice actor!) had to address some weighty phislophical or political issue it was absolutely ill-equipped to deal with.
To continue my little meta-textual streak... now that Milly and Meryl are back with Vash, I can’t help feeling like they’ve stopped over from another show. They seem like they’d be more at home in some HIS GIRL, FRIDAY-style shojo about the goings’-on and assorted office politics of their insurance bureau. Yet, by arbitrary circumstances, they’ve been thrust into this all these displays of "gunmanship." I suppose that speak for one my complaints that the mythos in this show feels like a hodgepodge that isn't too holistically-integrated. I like them, don't get wrong, but the fantasy elements in this show feel like they're taped together.
Watch this episode, “Hang Fire,” below and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.