Allow us to introduce the girls of Girls und Panzer!
A minor mystery to be solved. When I watched Girls Und Panzer through Netflix, they offered the twelve-episode season. Later, when scanning through the HIDIVE app, I noted that GUP ran for fourteen episodes. I clicked on the episode listing and noticed episodes 5.5 and 10.5. Recap episodes. I’ve seen them before. Chidori RSC. Asteroid in Love. The infamy of the fictitious emergency recap episode of Jiggly Heaven from Shirobako. At first, I thought them to be week-offs for animators who were regathering forces for the second portion of the season. You know, the good stuff which will make the series memorable. I never thought much of Chidori’s recap; I knew the basics of the team rebuilding for prefecture play and the nuances of electron-rifle target shooting. The recap for Asteroid seemed to make better sense. Lots of characters, each who had a backstory to structure into the overall plot. But, for the greater share, series rarely need recaps. Girls Und Panzer has two. And, when you understand what GUP is trying to accomplish, it makes perfect sense. These recaps cover five key areas. 1) The team from Ouarai Academy. Each tank has a different squad based on some common denominator. (Miho’s friends, student council, hall monitors, history buffs, et. al.). And, as the tourney continues, Ouarai must assemble a larger team. More tanks. More girls. Each one with a specific trait which should make her memorable. Granted, this part zips by, so take notes, or rewind incessantly until you’ve got them all down. Or don’t … and play fast and loose with the Ouarai ensemble. 2) The rules of the fictional game of Sensha-do. Honestly, I wish I had seen episode 10.5 before watching Der Film. The distinction between capture the flag-tank vs. total destruction. Plus, all the features which have been added into the rules, the type of ammo, the strength of the tanks and the automatic white flag which pops out when the tank is disabled. All those things which makes sensha-do absolutely safe for its practitioners (yeah, right!). 3) The opposition. This was a key part of 10.5. These feature the key players of St. Georgianna, Saunders, Pravda, and the up-coming clash with Kuromorimine. Again, light on Anzio, which explains the special episode. 4) The plot which has just played out over the past five episodes. Episode 5.5 focuses on the Ouarai team up to the scrimmage against St. Georgianna, 10.5 the tournament through the semi-finals. 5) Those beautiful, beautiful tanks!!!! In fact, the factoids on these killing machines offer an over-kill of info on armor strength, turret or turret-less, speed, maneuverability. Again, pause and note, then move on. Waaaaay too much in this corner. With each and every recap, there has to be a rationale for having it. If not, it just is a time-saver for animators on a busy schedule. But with GUP the question should not be ‘why two?’ Why not three?
Recaps are recaps and usually dont add anything else besides from the info that has already been given in the main series. These recaps are sligtly different in the sense that they provide background information. Who the characters are, in slightly more depth, information on the tanks and tankwando etc. The first episode is meant to watch after episode 5 on the main series. And ep 2 after 12. [spoiler?] For example in the main series I wondered why tanks didnt get destroyed. In the recap they said that every tank has a black box, and every shell on every tank has a tracer. The black box calculates the damage based on position of impact, type of shell etc. And after critical damage, the tank shuts down (in case it was still operating ;) ) and the flag pops out.
There are no custom lists yet for this series.