Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Sushi Pack - Fish Tales

This ep opens with a news report on the Wharf City Museum's newest exhibit: the Golden Beachball of the Incas. Sophia Tucker talks with the mayor, who points out that the ball is protected both by lasers and by the Sushi Pack 24/7 just in case someone, i.e. White Oleander, tries to steal it. For reasons that are never specified, she wants it and has even teamed up with a DNA specialist, A. Scientist, to try and get it.
Kani's crabbier than usual, and Ikura wants to know why. Kani makes him promise, really promise, not to tell, and he does. They go off to the side to talk in private, unaware that Wasabi followed them. Kani spills the beans: it's molting season, and she's going to lose her shell soon, which is apparently like a big Hollywood production (I'm not sure what she means by this, really), so she's going to hide out on the beach pretty soon until her new shell grows in. Wasabi splits to tell the others.
Over at Oleander's hideout, the scientist whips up a DNA smoothie designed to give her a shell strong enough to bypass the museum's lasers, but it doesn't work. The scientist calculates that in order to make a smoothie that will do the trick, they need the hardest crabshell DNA in the world, which happens to belong to Kani. Oleander sends him to the museum to find a way to get that shell, so he dons a beard as a disguise.
Desperate to tell someone what he heard, Wasabi interrupts Tako's shift guarding the beachball and Tako translates for our benefit: Kani's leaving the pack to go to Hollywood! Wasabi also tells him to stop repeating everything he says (^_~). Tako goes immediately to tell Maguro. I just love the way she just tells him to go away, since she's mediatating. Of course, once she hears the news about Kani, now with the addition of a job as a stuntcrab, she loses her meditative cool. Kani shows up and tells Tako that the police chief wants to talk to him, and when Maguro tentatively asks if she's going anywhere, she just about bites Maguro's head off. The police chief fills Tako in on Oleander's supposed whereabouts and asks the Pack to look around, since she's taking a vacation day (it's a running gag on the show that the police chief always has something else to do other than fight crime). Maguro tells Tako about Kani's apparent confirmation, and they decide to go tell Ben.
Having heard all this, the scientist calls Oleander (her comment on Kani becoming a stuntcrab: "I bet that's a tough union to get into."), and they make plans to nab Kani once she sets out for Hollywood. Kani, meanwhile, is putting a few things together in preparation for her trip. Ikura shows up to tell her that Ben is coming to talk to all of them, and comments on how bad she looks. With her shell already starting to crack, Kani beats a hasty retreat, hopping a cab for Deserted Beach State Park without even waiting to hear what Ben has to say. The scientist relays all this to Oleander, and they get set to make their move.
Ikura joins the others, who are upset that Kani left without saying goodbye, but Ben points out that they don't know what's really going on. So he interrogates them one by one, whittling the story down, but Ikura stays true to his promise to Kani and doesn't tell them what's going on, only that it has nothing to do with Hollywood.
On the beach, Kani is trying to rush the molt, and finally manages to crack out of her old shell, but before her new one can harden, Oleander and the scientist strike! Not only do they capture her in a net, but they seize her old shell for the DNA. Meanwhile, Ben, learning that Ikura promised not to tell what Kani told him, elucidates on the nature of gossip, which in this context is "personal opinion painted as truth," in other words, a rumor. But since Kani really is gone, and Ikura isn't talking, the rest of the Pack still try to figure out where she's gone. Hollywood for real, or perhaps Paraguay? (Is this a crab joke? I don't get it...) Finally, Ikura has enough and, even though he promised Kani, he has to set the facts straight. Hearing the truth, everyone else feels dumb for thinking otherwise, but no one feels dumber than Ikura, since he could have set the rumors straight earlier. Now that everything is all right, Ben has to get back to The Green Donut, since he's the only one who works there, after all.
The new DNA smoothie actually works this time (good news for the scientist, whom Oleander threatned with physical violence if it didn't), granting Oleander a hardy shell on her back and pinchers for hands. The effect only lasts two hours, so she sets off. Kani, trapped in a cage due to her still soft shell, realizes that the heat lamp she's under will actually work to her advantage, hardening her shell extra quickly, and soon she's able to bust off the lock and get loose! The scientist tries to stop her but ends up smashing one of his beakers, blowing the roof of the sea cottage they've been hiding in, just as a police chopper goes by. Kani hitches a ride with it to the musuem, and manages to get there in time to warn the rest of the Pack. Oleander is not discouraged, as her shell protects her from all their attacks. She gets past the lasers and manages to grab the ball, despite her pinchers. But Kani, being a crab, comes up with the perfect strategy: the Pack uses their powers to make the floor as slippery as possible, knocking Oleander flat on her back, unable to get up.
Two hours later the police show up and take Oleander into custody. Ikura apologizes to Kani for spilling her secret, but she acknowledges that he made the right decision. And while she's annoyed with Wasabi for starting the whole thing in the first place, she's able to look back on it and laugh already, so it's all good.

This is going to haunt me for weeks, but why did Oleander want the beachball? Did she have some kind of plan for it? Was she just going to sell it on the black market? Maybe she had a trade set up for some kind of legendary ingredient, since she's a foodie villian and all. Whatever it was, it was worth changing her DNA, so it must have been big.

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