After their job in the Balkans Koko and her team arrive in Egypt where they have a somewhat smaller job, selling arms to the local mobsters. However Valmet’s mind is somewhere else, and face with nightmares of her past she later cuts her hair and takes off.
Following this how she and Koko first met is shown as she appeared before her when she was facing a commission over the incident in Africa, Koko recounting the famous military of Valmet’s family and how her own would not have been much different without the incident before offering her two keys. One to a happy and peaceful life spent with family and friends, and the second to the world by joining her. Elsewhere at this point a trio of assassins finishes up a job and talks of retiring as they make their way to their next one.
However while Valmet intended to take off on her own she finds Jonah close at her heels, and only begins to relent on him staying with her when he insists that he’s here for Koko and touches upon what happened in South Africa, while Koko on the other hand is frustrated but intends to keep going. As expected the trio of assassins’ next job happens to be Koko, and just looking at her team’s records know that this will be a tough one but decide to go with splitting them up and picking them off. Starting with Ugo. Elsewhere the humiliation of Karen’s defeat comes up and she’s dismissed by her boss, Chen as a result, with more details about Chen himself revealed by Schokolade to Koko. Revealing that he uses a cane because he stepped on a mine and that the Daixinhai company serves to expand Chinese influence, establishing industry and settling.
The driver for Valmet and Jonah warning them of the dangers of such. After this Koko tries to make her next sale but when the mobsters try to pay her in drugs she throws it in his face and shows them what she thinks of it. The leader of the assassin trio, Boss Dominique shown further looking into them as his team moves out, and Koko confiding in Lehm that she had sent Jonah after Valmet, Lehm approving of such as Koko goes on to talk about who Valmet is to her. However soon after making it back to their hotel the trio of assassins make their move, and when Koko calls out to confirm her team’s status Lehm and Ugo remain silent, the latter shown with bolt clippers pinned against his throat followed by a crunch.
Just when I complain about the lack of a plot this episode comes along and changes that with the return of Chen and the Daixinhai company, in effect turning things into a continuation of the Africa arc and Valmet’s character arc. Those parts alone made this episode interesting.
It was also great to see supposed assassins actually act like assassins as well comparing Boss Dominique’s trio to the duo on noisy idiots that was Orchestra, they were simply a lot more professional in that they actually planned their attacks out. Looking into their target and those that they’ve got with them, and then planning out the best way to take their target out as opposed to just looking at a picture of their target and going in guns blazing. It’s because of that I’m actually kind of worried for some of the characters on Koko’s team, some of them could be taken out of the picture without really harming the story at all and this time the assassins feel like a real threat.
Before that however it was great to see this episode pick up where the Africa arc had left off in developing Valmet’s character, the matter of her past had been introduced and touched upon but it wasn’t exactly resolved, at the end we understood how she must feel but she was unable to either move on or grow from what happened in the arc by beating Karen down. So hopefully with her heading in Chen’s general direction to settle things this arc should allow her to do just that. Alongside that it was also kind of nice to see how Koko recruited her and even her thinking what Valmet really means to her, usually I find Koko’s habit of speaking in pretentious metaphores annoying but in this case it wasn’t that bad. Valmet doesn’t feel all that expendable at this point either.
Either way with Valmet’s development being picked up again and the return of Chen it feels like this season should be drawing to a close quite nicely, an overall plot still doesn’t seem to be present but with both of these this episode had the illusion of such. Chen’s possibly the closest thing that the series has to a villain for the story so far, being that he’s ambitious, ruthless, and cold but at the same time he isn’t exactly opposed to Koko since only Valmet needs to overcome him and move on. So given that there isn’t exactly any overarching antagonist so far his return for the final arc of this season has been a welcome sight, and if he is taken out in the next episode it should have some lasting effects on his loyal subordinate Karen, further putting her up against Valmet.