REVIEW: ‘Otherside Picnic,’ Episode 4 – “Time, Space, Old Man”

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Otherside Picnic Episode 4

Otherside Picnic Episode 3 is one of many novel series coming to digital big spring in Winter 2021. A blend of Yuri, science fiction, and horror, Otherside Picnic angles to tantalize viewers with gals being pals in a world full of creepypasta monsters. Previous episodes of Otherside Picnic have done just that, showcasing the creepy Otherside and setting the stage for a dynamic story. In fact, last episode showed off the Big Heads, haunting, uncanny valley spawn that chased Sorao and Toriko all over the Otherside. While somewhat cartoonish, the creatures were solid supernatural horror fare, providing a thrilling episode Otherside Picnic Episode 4, “Time, Space, Old Man”, is a strange episode, which says a lot. After all, the entire premise of Otherside Picnic is two girls venturing into a world filled with horror stories, netlore, and the creepiest of pasta.

Still, Otherside Picnic Episode 4 was a weird one, specifically because of the Space-Time Man. But more on that later. The episode starts off with Sorao and Toriko chowing down on a whole table of delicious-looking food. Once again, they’re talking about the Otherside. Despite their continual brushes with death, they’re still determined to go back. Specifically, they’re determined to find Satsuki. Sorao questions if Satsuki’s even alive, but Toriko remains devoutly faithful. 

This sparks the first bit of genuine relationship tension between the girls, at least from my perspective. Thus far, both Sorao and Toriko have been on the same page. They venture into the Otherside, work in tandem, and make it back in one piece, more or less. The girls have been able to forge a deep relationship together.

However, the topic of Satsuki -a victim of the Otherside, and Toriko’s friend- can’t be solved by an adventure. For Sorao, Satsuki is kind of just a girl who’s important to Toriko, but not much else. For Toriko, Satsuki is well worth risking her life for.

This dissonance between them and their concern of Satsuki was bound to come to a head. Otherside Picnic Episode 4 is a good place for that to happen too. The story’s developed, but it’s not too far into the series that this development feels like an afterthought.

After their misunderstanding, Sorao finds herself at Kozakura’s place. Kozakura plays a supportive friend for Sorao, chiding her for not just going to look for Toriko. Naturally, she’s worried about Toriko, but she’s not about to head to the Otherside. That much is clear. Things seem peaceful, but of course, that’s only temporary. Trouble soon comes knocking at Kozakura’s door in the form of three mysterious beings who have the same vibe as the Otherside. It’s not long before they become more than a threat to the girls, who arm up and get ready for a fight.

This unease is a sharp reminder of why I like Otherside Picnic. The horror, while uniquely supernatural and unreal, is still just as frightening. It makes doorways liminal spaces and makes the simple act of looking through a peephole feel like you’re playing with something unknown. The way that the Otherside can devour places and snatch people into it is also very, very good. In fact, that’s what happens in Otherside Picnic Episode 4.

I feel that now is a good time to circle back to what made this episode strange and kind of weak for me: the Space-Time Man. Despite being in the title of Otherside Picnic Episode 4, he gets very little screen time. In fact, the entity that the girls face off against isn’t even him. It’s a completely different otherside beasty.

The concept of the Space-Time Man is interesting. He’s a middle-aged man who protects the Otherside from intruders and warns them off from venturing into it. He also appears as a blur with indescribable features, furthering the “man out of time” concept. In theory, this is a really neat character concept. Yet we get very little beyond that during this episode, and honestly, that’s a shame. I’d love to have seen this developed out a bit more.

Overall, Otherside Picnic Episode 4 isn’t a bad episode. It moves the plot forward, gives Sorao and Toriko some valuable character growth, and shows a different side to Kozakura. It’s also nice to see Sorao and Kozakura form a friendship separate from Toriko. It means that Sorao is moving outside her comfort zone, bit by bit. However, Otherside Picnic Episode 4 is the weakest episode thus far. Toriko and Sorao’s relationship feels good, and it’s nice to get development. Yet the inclusion of the Space-Time Man, and the lack of explanation around him, weakens what could have been a really interesting episode. I wish there’d been a bit more detail surrounding him. 

Still, Otherside Picnic Episode 4 is definitely still a solid entry, despite being kind of just okay. The show continues to be engaging and enjoyable. If this is the weakest episode we get, then Otherside Picnic is still a really good show.

Otherside Picnic is streaming now on Funimation.

Otherside Picnic Episode 4 - “Time, Space, Old Man”
  • 7/10
    Rating - 7/10
7/10

TL;DR

Still, Otherside Picnic Episode 4 is definitely still a solid entry, despite being kind of just okay. The show continues to be engaging and enjoyable. If this is the weakest episode we get, then Otherside Picnic is still a really good show.