Enter the Desu...
Kuwatani Natsuko) is possibly my least favorite among the dolls to boot - she embodies the preciousness that sometimes put me off the earlier Rozen Maiden adaptations better than any of the others. In truth I much prefer her twin sister Souseiseki, though she also seems to have made an appearance this week (which I'll get to in a minute).
A Doll in the Palm of My Hand" and "Practica Dolls" continue to cast their shadows on "real" events, suggesting that everyone is part of a larger passion play - and hanging over everything is the spectre of the Alice Game and LaPlace, out of sight but never totally out of mind.
seems able to do so with Jun as well, despite the absence of a contract between them. This is enough to draw Sugintou and Shinku into a formal if temporary alliance despite their mutual distrust (Sugintou's snark towards her sisters is probably my favorite part of the episode) and Shinku's hesitation in attacking Kirakishou's body, which she believes to be Hina Ichigo's.
Suiseiseki's arrival is the wild card, the game-changer of the episode. She reveals that the body is in fact Souseiseki's (absent proof to the contrary I'll conditionally believe her for the moment) and refuses to allow Shinku and Sugintou to attack. If there's a regret with Zurückspulen for me it's that Souseiseki hasn't appeared since the opener - she was always my favorite among the sisters, and it'd be a shame if her only role in this series is to be Kirakishou's shell. What I sincerely hope is that the rest of the series is not simply a grand battle among the dolls, but an opportunity for Unwound Jun to have real closure - he's been the main character and he can't stand passively by as the dolls (or even his pubescent self) do his fighting for him. Happily I have full confidence that opportunity will come, based on the faith I have in the source material, director and writer after seeing how outstanding this series has been up to now. It's also going to be a treat to see the two Juns interact at last, and it appears as if that may happen very soon, maybe even next week. In lesser hands an episode like this one would have me quite worried, but as it stands I view it as an entertaining table-setter for what's to come.