Girls und Panzer – 01: Kampfgruppe Miho

I hope they get rid of this ugly ass Type 89…you are taking on Matilda IIs and Matilda IIs owned Japanese tanks of every mass produced type all the way to 1945. It’s Girls und Panzer not Girls und SHIT.

Anytime you have tanks in anime it certainly gets my attention, add in a bit of implied yuri in an all-girls school and at least on paper this is my kind of show. So far it hasn’t disappointed me too much. Still I think that they need to get rid of that Type 89, we already have Muv Luv to carry the Glorious Nippon Samurai banner, we need real panzers not lowly inter-war tank with a low velocity 57mm and riveted armor. Other than the suspect inclusion of a Type 89, I can go with having a StuG III, Panzer 38(t), M3 Grant, and Panzer IV. As much as I want upgrades I get this sinking feeling that I may not get them, then again this is still a far cry from serious tank vs. tank combat. Still I want them all to get upgrades since the competition is going to not only out gun them but have bigger and faster tanks.

As is if they plan on taking 1 Churchill and 4 Matilda IIs then they better be ready for the Panzer 38(t) and the Type 89 play decoy since their guns will not put so much as a dent in British Armor. Old Blighty may have skimped too much on firepower for their early designs but the armor was superb especially on the slower Infantry Tanks. The 38(t) will have some uses but if they want a bigger gun they will have to upgrade to Marder III or Hetzer and lose the turret in the process. If ED is any indication then the Type 89 is better off being used for scrap as the 57mm short is only useful against infantry and is a piss poor AT gun.

The Type 89 may be the sucks but the inclusion of the StuG III with 7.5 cm KwK 40 makes up for it so long as the optics are still German and the crew has an artillery pedigree. The StuG III is a vastly underrated assault gun that was by far the most cost effective AFV in the German arsenal, and yes it had a better record than the vaunted Tiger. People forget just how lethal assault guns were back in the day as the low profile StuGs could easily ambush enemy armor. Coupled with German optics (the best in the world at the time courtesy of Zeiss) and the best artillery troops in the Heer, StuGs could shoot first, shoot, long and shoot accurately. The reason why StuGs weren’t crew by tankers was because they occupied a grey area in the order of battle and the compromise inclusion of artillery men meant that the StuGs had some of the best big gun sharp shooters laying its shots.

The M3 Grant is an acceptable tank for the task at hand as the 75mm while hull mounted still packs a mighty punch. The problem is that the M3 Grant had a very high profile making for a larger target. Moreover one of things that is better than a hull mounted 75mm is a turret mounted 75mm. As the competition heats up they will need a better tank as the turret mounted 37mm will soon be obsolete against the Mid to Late War designs. The sponson mount also limits tactical possibilities and the high profile makes ambushing enemy armor all but impossible. Still it is mechanically reliable and easy to maintain which works since the whole platoon is green.

Having the lead tank be a Panzer IV makes me very happy as not only was the basic design sound, the Panzer IV had very high upgrade potential and while they have an early model with a 75mm short, I am hoping that there will be upgrades in the future. Having the Panzer IV and Panzer III figure prominently has me grinning ear to ear. Most people simply point to the Panzer V and Panzer VI as the quintessential German Tank of the war, but they forget that it was the innovative design of the Panzer III that led to later designs and that the Panzer IV was the back bone of German armor for most of the war. I mentioned before that optics was often overlooked when people praise German tank design, but equally important to the smashing success of the Panzerwaffe was the three man turret that distinguished the Panzer III from most contemporary tanks.

If you ever look at the specifications for French tanks and German Tanks like the Panzer III they are fairly evenly matched but French tanks often had smaller turrets while German tanks had a dedicated loader, gunner, and tank commander. The French often had their tank commander do double duty as gunner and as a result while their tanks were better armed and armored for the most part they were deftly out maneuvered by their German opponents. Believe it or not a tank is most effective when there is an exposed crewman to act as its eyes and ears. Fighting when the whole crew is locked inside the armor hull may seem like a good idea until you realize that the crew can’t see their surroundings. Hence the tank commander must not only direct the crew but also be aware of the battlefield.

Miho has her reasons for not wanting to do Sensha-do (Tankery) but I am sure that she will be fine and as the tank commander for the Panzer IV she is for all intents and purposes a platoon commander as well. The Student Council might be there but in a prolonged firefight the Panzer IV would make the best command tank given its overall versatility and crew layout. Saori and Hana were so eager that I was anticipating a rendition of Panzerlied, but that wasn’t going to happen. However given the setting and the absence of boys I easily turn on the yuri goggles and in my estimation Miho has already indirectly kissed Saori and Hana. They are off to a rough start with a Panzer IV in horrible disrepair but as the old tank crews were expected to maintain their vehicles I expect that they will learn to care for their AFVs. I really hope they will be upgrading chassis and installing bigger main guns. We saw hints of heavier tanks so if they stick with what they have now, my enthusiasm will damper. Honestly I can’t get behind this show 100% if that Type 89 is going to beat up on Panzer VIs.

I like the inclusion of the Panzer 38(t) and the M3 Grant. I just hope that the girls will bet rid of the rivets and use welds instead.

I am all for colorful, but get rid of the banners on the Sturmgeschutz III. It needs the low profile to be effective.

They need to remove 18 or so rounds to make room for a dedicated loader.

I take it that this is the Type 89 Crew…well ladies I hope they give you guys an upgrade to Panzer III or better. In Tank vs. Tank the Type 89 is a death trap.

Ah the StuG III Crew elite of the artillery. Remember ladies you have the best optics and a 75mm, I look forward to seeing you lead the group in armor kills.

I hope you guys are going to lobby for an upgrade to M4 Sherman Firefly or something more circa 1943-1945.

For now I think they should be called the “Rolling Circus.”

But after that you girls should beg/borrow/steal a 7.5 cm KwK 40. Your 75 short isn’t an ideal AT gun.

I think Mako would rather have a Panzer V.

I guess Team Teapot decided to go with heavier infantry tanks…no a bad choice considering the opposition includes a crappy Type 89 and under gunned Panzer 38(t) and Panzer IV.

All the more reason to upgrade to Panzer IV Ausf F2 or better.

Did they upgrade the engines? Matilda IIs shouldn’t be this fast…

They should really think about putting in smoke launchers…

Nice to meed you I am sure you will have fun under Miho’s command.

How appropriate that she likes to arrange flowers as well…

Apparently none of them detected her yuri vibe…

Fraulien von Seekct is not going to let you ruin her plans.

That sounds like one helluva an elective.

Ah the old Mark I Tank, whoever thought it was a good idea to keep the engine and the crew together was an idiot.

It was a strange case where German engineering did not translate well for the A7V…

I like their garrison caps.

Yes it counts.

Because there will be times when you just want to do a drive by…

Indeed for a Panzer III is a sound investment when it has a 50mm main gun.

TOTALLY WORTH IT.

Especially it they own their own tank…

Tanks over flowers.

I take it that she is president for life.

Best decision you will ever make kid.

She is most eager to invade France.

Two indirect kisses? Tanks and Yuri? How could I say no…

All it needs is a bit of love, diesel, and a few parts.

I know carriers are portrayed as floating cities, but this is ridiculous.

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27 Comments

  1. Whatsht
    Posted October 16, 2012 at 3:01 am | Permalink

    6 paragraphs on the tanks.

    The carrier surprised me, I mean, what the hell? THE CITY IS ON A CARRIER?

    • Crusader
      Posted October 16, 2012 at 6:48 am | Permalink

      Yeah there wasn’t an out pouring of yuri…yet. Will change once we get to know the crews.

    • Reid
      Posted October 19, 2012 at 10:49 am | Permalink

      SDF Macross can float, I reckon.

      • Whatsht
        Posted October 21, 2012 at 12:11 am | Permalink

        If I remember correctly, the SDF-1 spent some time on the ocean before being ordered to get off the Earth.

        • Crusader
          Posted October 23, 2012 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

          That is correct, although they didn’t go with a pirate theme…

  2. SayuriUliana
    Posted October 16, 2012 at 4:22 am | Permalink

    Surprised that for your knowledge of tanks, you keep referring to the M3 used here as the British “Grant” version, when it’s clearly the American version aka the “Lee”.

    • Crusader
      Posted October 16, 2012 at 6:47 am | Permalink

      I grew up calling them all M3 Grants, personal anti-Confederate bias, but you are right the cupola marks it as a Lee. I hate unofficial names the Americans didn’t make things easier by using the M designation for everything. I am only human most of my tank knowledge is in German models and with German tank doctrine.

  3. Emperor
    Posted October 16, 2012 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    I don’t want to … but wtf?

    • Crusader
      Posted October 16, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      THE YURI AND PANZER COMPELS YOU

      • Whatsht
        Posted October 16, 2012 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

        That’s tyranny beyond Hitler!

        • Crusader
          Posted October 17, 2012 at 7:48 am | Permalink

          Invoking Hitler means you automatically lose. Thanks for playing and I just heard your car was crushed somehow a pity…

          • Emperor
            Posted October 19, 2012 at 4:44 am | Permalink

            ehm ok : / panzer and yuri

  4. Posted October 16, 2012 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    I was actually surprised by this – it’s kinda good. Not just OK.

    The director or someone said no panty-shots. This is good, because I hate that crap. However, I heard one interpretation that said that means there are not panties – which makes this even more like Saki With Tanks, and THAT I can get behind 1000%.

    The idea that Tankery (I prefer that translation – fits more with the tone of the series) is the ideal training for the ideal woman (even though that was obviously pro-tankery propaganda of the highest order) is both absolutely hilarious, and incredibly awesome. I especially was fond of the thought that it’s not really a guy thing (what is? maybe planes?).

    I kept wondering about the size of that school. Most schools are one, maybe two of those buildings, but there were a bunch. I thought maybe all of the schools in the city were in that complex (the high school shown definitely didn’t have enough students to justify all that). And it turns out I was right, though I would never have predicted why.

    • Crusader
      Posted October 17, 2012 at 7:45 am | Permalink

      I can get behind no panty shots. The whole Tankery film was just like the old recruitment ads of the 1930s and 1940s. Sadly there seems to be a lack of surplus Panzer IIIs for them to use.

    • Reid
      Posted October 19, 2012 at 10:54 am | Permalink

      I was thinking the same thing. It must be that guys fly WWII fighter planes…or maybe they’re trapped in close confines in a submarine. I mean, it’s only fair for there to be some yaoi if there’s going to be all this play-cute lesbo stuff getting in the way of seeing some (poorly done) CG tanks having at it.

      • Crusader
        Posted October 23, 2012 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

        Life isn’t fair and to be honest I couldn’t care any less about what the boys do given girls school setting. If you want your yaoi bait go watch K, I don’t think you are going to get it here comrade.

  5. Magewolf
    Posted October 16, 2012 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

    This was a great surprise.I was going to watch this for the tanks but it turned out to be a pretty good show.

    • Crusader
      Posted October 17, 2012 at 7:46 am | Permalink

      It was better than expected and am hopeful that the fun will continue.

  6. megaroad1
    Posted October 17, 2012 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    I was compelled to watch this show just because the word ‘panzer’ was in the title. While I was expecting something a tad different (think Dominion Tank Police), I’m strangely interested in following the adventures of Miho and her crew. And I hope we get some T-34′s and some Tigers or KV’s at some point of course.

    Surely the student Council member with the one glass monocle is a reference to Field Marshal Walter Model rather than von Seeckt?

    • Crusader
      Posted October 23, 2012 at 10:04 pm | Permalink

      I prefer von Seeckt because I suspect that Momo was the mastermind behind the Miho GET plan. Unless Momo is a defensive specialist, there is no comparison. For now she seems to be the woman behind the wooden armor…

      I think we are good for T-34, they might skip the KV-1s though. I would prefer IS-2s…because if we are going to have heavy tanks I want a heavy tank with more PUNCH.

      • Huntermad
        Posted October 27, 2012 at 5:39 am | Permalink

        IS-2 has great PUNCH but It is quite slow between the PUNCH through. Still capable take out even Big Fat Tiger at reasonable range through.

        • Huntermad
          Posted October 27, 2012 at 5:39 am | Permalink

          Big fat Tiger II…..

        • Crusader
          Posted October 29, 2012 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

          Tiger IIs were made during the nadir of Germany’s production capacity. While their paper specs were better, in reality the Tiger I was more mechanically reliable and was made of better materials. In Soviet test firing they found that Tiger IIs generally had more manufacturing faults than Tiger Is.

          The Allies were all too slow in re-purposing their AA guns for heavy armor. At least the Sherman and T-34 were more strategically mobile.

  7. yf19ex
    Posted October 17, 2012 at 9:17 pm | Permalink

    I am am enjoying this show. Other than my usual like or military weaponry, (I’m a more modern MBT person myself) WWII was an interesting time. Tanks were metal, men were meat and transmissions were still manual. I have been watching my fare share of MOE shows over the years and other than the insane logic of using tanks for girls training, it fun to watch the character interactions and their reactions to the tanks and equipment.

    Ep2 will get more into actual operations of the tanks. What I wonder is how much research did the writers put into the tanks. Each one is different in terms of operations, crew size, weapons, deployment strategy etc.

    The best part is the tank CGI is done pretty well as to try to replicate real movement. Treads, breaking, nose dives and acceleration of a several ton tank are detailed quite well. The characters themselves although fit into the usual tropes have enough individuality and interactions with each other to produce a team that meshes and bounces off each other at the right times. That and the toned fanservice does not detract from the overall presentation. I am quite pleased with it.

    • yf19ex
      Posted October 17, 2012 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

      Edit: I meant to say the overall toned down fanservice only helps to enhance the overall presentation as its not a key trait to this series.

    • Crusader
      Posted October 23, 2012 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

      Toned down fan service helps immensely, apparently the writer is a tank otaku, but while he did his homework I disapprove of the inclusion of the Type 89.

      Also it seems that firing one the move without laser range finders does factor in.

  8. marisabell34
    Posted November 8, 2012 at 9:58 pm | Permalink

    Don’t we all want a Panzer Z?

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