VIDEOGAMES AGAIN. Really need to get better at sticking to doing these. Anyway.
We open today in roughly the same place we left off last time. Vash is a hero, but the town still needs its plant fixed. Luckily, our bungling villains from last episode are worth a whole bucket of cash, so Inepril cashes in. Vash is technically the one eligible to collect the reward, but why take a small hill of cash when you can give it up for UNLIMITED SANDWICHES.
And if there’s anyone that looks like they could rustle up an S-rank sandwich, it’s her.
Well, now that his extremely badly kept secret is out, Vash has gained an entourage, consisting entirely of a couple of insurance girls. Meryl is pretty bitter and sarcastic about the reality of Mr. Stampede in the flesh, and sets to her self-appointed task of denying him the fruits of his heroism (in the shape of booze and hookers, apparently), and after he uses them as a human shield against a deadly assault, her pan of resentment starts to bubble over onto the cooker-top of murderousness.
A deadly assault indeed.
Thankfully, a plot arrives to distract her from riddling Vash’s body with tiny bullets. A trade caravan arrives, in possibly the most badass form of any trade caravan in any media ever.
SAND STEAMER CHUGGA CHUGGA WOO WOO
A behemoth, tracked landship shaped like a half-zeppelin, half-Jawa Sandcrawler. The people of the city are understandably excited to trade with the crew and passengers of this colossus of the desert, but they also know that there’s a Plant maintenance team on board, which will solve their rather desperate desertification problem. But this wouldn’t be quite enough of a reason for Vash to care, so the head engineer comes clad in some rather interesting attire.
The massive shoulder-puffs are actually shock-absorbers. Practical!
Before the real events of the episode start up, we get a little scene of Vash pouring a bottle of whiskey away in front of the broken plant, as if for a fallen comrade (FORESHADOWING), before our lovely chief engineer wanders up and uses her hypnoboobs to convince Vash to become her bodyguard. Also some dude following her has Terminator eyes. Meanwhile, our insurance girls are searching through bins for Vash. He arrives of his own accord, with Elizabeth (our engineer) following along, literally treating him like a dog (with Vash acting like one, complete with barking). Meryl is, again, less than impressed with Vash’s conduct.
I can’t keep posting every Meryl derpface, because my screenshot button will wear out.
Vash strikes out with ‘Liz, goes to his room, but senses something dangerous. Then a cyborg-rasta ninja (?) smashes through the window! I have no idea what the design for this guy is supposed to be.
Seriously, what the crap?
Vash obviously wins, with our Reggae-Reggae flavoured assassin leaping out of the now mysteriously repaired window, but not before he drops an explosive. Vash survives the blast, but he and his bed are blown out of the building. Elizabeth only then informs him that she swapped room numbers with him in the hotel registry, and that he has to sleep outside that night. This is disappointing.
Vash is so sad, his bed flies into space to try and cheer him up. It doesn’t work.
We return as Vash is mooching around while Elizabeth does her job. Apparently she doesn’t actually know how Plants work, but she does have a decent knowledge of how to fix them, sort of like someone who knows the precise button sequence to program their VCR, but without actually knowing what any of the buttons individually do.
(To everyone younger than me: a VCR is a device used to display moving images captured on ancient, magical black oblongs. Also for rewinding the oblongs so they can be watched again.)
Our ladies of insurance stride into the secure area shouting and crying crocodile tears (guess which is doing which), when suddenly A SITUATION OCCURS. Trouble in Sector 3, boss!
I can tell, because these unlabelled graphs and symbols are DANGEROUSLY HIGH.
Liz and Vash sprint off to fix things, leaving Milly to urge a rather sensible retreat from a possible Plant meltdown. When they reach the Vaguely Industrial Pipe room however, there seems to be someone waiting for them.
Hi, I’m here as a representative of “Limb-blades n’ Dreadlocks Quarterly”! Can I interest you in a subscription?
Vash once again makes quick work of our pseudo-Jamaican friend, but SHOCK: it was a setup all along! Liz is actually the one trying to kill Vash, and she tries to seal the deal by escaping the danger-zone, locking the door with Vash still inside. She reveals that her actions are the result of a thirst for revenge from when Vash first got his insane bounty, when he wiped the town of July off the map.
I’m guessing he used something bigger than that revolver he carries around.
In the ensuing chaos that resulted from more than a million people suddenly becoming homeless, Elizabeth’s parents died, leaving her to wander the destroyed city until she was saved by a mysterious man with bandaged arms. Anyway, all she knows is it was Vash’s fault so now he needs to die. Simple stuff. She tells some lies to the crew to get them to evacuate, and then sits back to watch the fireworks of a town’s only source of power blowing up with Vash inside. Except it doesn’t, because Vash does a little messiah trick.
And now on Nat Geo, we return to… The Plant Whisperer, with Vash the Stampede.
Vash strides out of the Plant, to the town’s jubilation (and Meryl’s affected lack of interest).
Elizabeth needs a showdown, and walks up to Vash, pressing a pistol to his gut, before Vash tells her that he has… AMNESIA, and can’t even remember if it was him that destroyed July, only that he woke up in the wreckage. Elizabeth realises that the mysterious man that saved her all those years ago is actually Vash. She is pretty disappointed that Vash is such a nice chap and not a murderous psychopath, and promptly collapses in a heap. Vash has a little wistful stare into the distance.
So, what did we learn today?
- Meryl only knows how to solve social situations by shouting
- Also she seems to have a disorder where strong emotions cause her face to turn into a rubber mask.
- Vash is totally a sub.
- Beds are grenade-proof, concrete walls are not.
- Glass windows regenerate in moments if they’re not smashed TOO bad.
- Hypocrisy is fine if you’re ~beautiful~.
- Vash can be bribed with salmon sandwiches. (Actually, probably almost any food will do it)
- Meryl is aged twentMMPHFPH [*gunshot*]
Next week, we get NEON, LAND-PIRATE AMBUSH and our first glimpse of Vash’s prime motivator.