Okay, this one starts off cheesily good, gets a little weak near the end, but still scores mega-points for being so unabashedly Tako-centric. Still, it definitely is one of the odder eps.
I mean, the whole thing starts off with Kani, Maguro, and Ikura talking about their families and how they keep up with them. Now, I can kind of dig this for Kani and Maguro, but isn't ikura salmon roe? As in, eggs? Now, the conceit of the show is that the Sushi Pack were created by a freak lightning storm. There hasn't been an explicit origin episode (yet), but it's been mentioned offhand a couple of times. So, I'm just curious about how 'alive' roe is before being made into sushi. I mean, with the others, they obviously had life before becoming sushi, so it makes sense that they would remember their relatives when they came back to life, as it were, but an egg? Or really, more than one egg? The more I think about it, the less sense Ikura makes. No wonder he's so headstrong, he's got twenty or so eggs in his head.
Anyway, the point of everyone's families is to set up the episode's scenerio: Tako feels left out because he doesn't have any family. Neither does Wasabi, being a condiment and all, but they don't hang out and wallow in their mutual lack of family or anything. First, Tako walks in on Kani surfing her family's blog and she tells him about her little nephew having a growth spurt, and then he notices Maguro organizing postcards from her relatives on vacation, and then Ikura comes back with photos from his family reunion trip upstream (did he go to spawn or what?). At last, I realize why he's afraid of bears! After each encounter, Tako gets all down and says stuff like "I wish I had a brother or sister." And I confess, this just gave me a fit of giggles. I'm sorry, Tako, but angst just is not your thing, even with that eyepatch.
Later, Tako is sitting all depressed on a pile of dishes (which look like pancakes IMO), and while he engages in a small bit of feelings talk, I'll forgive him because he's Tako. Let's just pretend that Wasabi and Ben, who are entering the frame as he speaks, asked what was wrong. And apparently Tako's so depressed that it's effecting his ink flow. Ben doesn't have an answer for once(!), so Tako tells his story and we get a flashback: When he was just a baby octopus (born with an eyepatch, it seems) he had a thousand sisters. But one day he went exploring and got caught in a current (and was presumably caught soon after), and he never saw the rest of his family again. So technically he has a family, he just doesn't know where they are.
Hearing his story, Maguro tries to reassure Tako by telling him that the Pack is his family now and she thinks of him as a brother (probably not the kind of reassurance he was looking for ^_~), and the rest of the Pack agree. Ben is remarkably off-form today, but is saved from saying too much by a sudden tremor.
The cause is not an earthquake, but the titular diver walking down the street. The diver comes across a policeman and a driver, and sprays them both with water, making them both disgruntedly say, "Thanks, deep sea diver dude," for some reason. Seeing this, the Sushi Pack leaps into action! Noting that the diver is looking for something, and also noticing that the suit is leaking salt water (not just water, but salt water) and its supply hose goes all the way to the harbor, Tako knocks the diver over easily and opens the mask to find...a squid? A rather polite squid who apologizes for making a mess. She introduces herself as Hideki, Tako's cousin (isn't Hideki a boy's name?), and gives him an invitation to the Spring Shindig held by the International Neighborhood of Kinfolk (INK, anyone?). Once it sinks in that he has a family, Tako is thrilled and plans to leave right away. Maguro, fittingly, is the one to ask if he'll be back. Tako says he will, but is so excited that it sounds like he won't, and he bids his friends adieu. Hideki starts up the diver suit again, though she warns Tako that she failed diver's ed (badum ching!), and they head back into the ocean.
Ikura laments how slowly time passes without Tako, but Kani points out that only three minutes have gone by. Somehow inspired by this, Ikura wonders if Tako was tricked into leaving, since they don't really know if Hideki is his cousin or not. Could this be a plot to unravel the Sushi Pack?! Again, I find it fitting that Maguro corrects Kani: taking Tako is cephalopodnapping, not fishnapping. Regardless, they take off in their mini-sub. Ikura comments on how they've never been this low, which Maguro misinterprets. They follow the supply line that Hideki left (Maguro refers to Hideki as 'he,' but I'm pretty sure that Hideki is a girl, having not only the same up-curled eyes as Maguro and Kani, but her voice is pretty girly, too. But like I said before, Hideki is a boy's name, so I can see why Maguro is confused), and soon come to a big, black hole. Predictably, they try to go in, but it turns out to be a whale's eye, so they beat a hasty retreat.
Finally, they come to the real cave and use their gadgets to eavesdrop on two octopi and hear something that sounds cryptically bad, but obviously is not sinister. Regrettably, the Pack doesn't even consider this option, and they get into position to protect Tako.
They sneak into the shindig and spy Tako hanging out with Hideki and having a good time. As they go in for a closer look, the master of ceremonies (calling himself the Grand Octopu) pops up and introduces Tako as their "very special guest." This is when the rest of the Pack drop in and cause some mayhem, but the multitude of octopi retaliate and drive them back. Tako understandably demands to know what the rest of the pack was thinking, but the Grand Octopu is not upset at all. In fact, he's glad that the rest of the Pack showed up, since it means they get to hear the special poem he composed for Tako (I'm assuming he composed it), honoring him as Octopus of the Year! He also commends the rest of the Pack for coming to rescue Tako, even though he wasn't in any danger. And he gives them pens, making them honorary octopi. Maguro and Tako expound on the lesson that you can be part of more than one group and family is where you find it. And then the pens shoot ink all over the rest of the Pack, and they jump out of the ocean for a final pose. The End.
You know, I've gushed over the voice acting in Adventures in Care-a-lot, but I haven't really mentioned it for this show. That's not because it's bad, in fact, I think that Sushi Pack has very good voice work. Whoever does the cast directing does a very good job. Maybe too good... What I really want to say is that I really liked the voice actor and actress who did the Grand Octopu and Hideki.
Also, I feel like I recognize both Ikura and Tako whenever I listen to them, but every time I look them up on the IMDB, I haven't seen anything they've done. Well, I've seen one thing that Ikura did (Soujiro in Boys Over Flowers), but since that was the dub, I didn't watch very much of it, so I know that's not where I'm getting the feeling from. It must be all the "additonal voices" credits, I guess.
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