Well then, let’s talk about a slightly less obvious one: Takio Azuma, one of the astronauts coming up to take the next shift at the moonbase. He’s almost certainly named for famous manga author/artist Hideo Azuma, who is well-known for his sf work. But one of Hideo Azuma’s best-known works is the autobiographical Disappearance Diary, in which he chronicles how he embraced alcoholism to deal with the stress of constant manga deadlines and editorial conflicts, how he twice simply walked away from his family to live as a homeless person for several months, and how he eventually found a support group and sobered up after being forced into a psychiatric hospital. So there may be part of the inspiration for Pico as well.
As for the story about why women packed parachutes, even though it did serve to provide a hint that maybe someday, many many many many chapters in the future, Serika might return Mutta’s affection, I’m afraid my household expert on all things military, aviation-related, and historical says that it is bogus.
Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet #6 – As it struggles back to its feet after last week’s faceplant, Gargantia drops a tantalizing hint about the Hideauze which merits a review of Earth’s future chronology as we know it so far:
- Earth freezes, rendering it uninhabitable by humans. Everyone (or almost everyone) leaves.
- Avalon or its ancestors either lose track of Earth or deliberately suppress information about it.
- The ice melts and Earth is completely covered by ocean, rendering it still difficult for humans to inhabit, but ideal for, say, giant squid. A lucky accident for the squid, or…?
The big question now is whether those “whale squid” are one and the same as the Hideauze, or their lost cousins. Perhaps Ledo has a cephalopod counterpart who even now is trying to explain the concept of space war against the ape-creatures and being beguiled by the Dance of the Seven Tentacles.
Speaking of names, Colt isn’t too far from his original name of Kurt– in the original Japanese, they’re Koruto and Kuruto respectively. It looks like personal memories can be preserved fairly well by the Chimera Ant recombination process, not just stores of knowledge. Which brings some interesting possibilities to the impending capture of Mr. Big. Perhaps the queen isn’t just looking for good genes for her new king, but a useful personality to adapt.
Just in case they’re about to be brutally killed, I want to say it was nice to see Pokkle and Ponzu again. They’re characters from way back in the early episodes when Gon first entered the Hunter Exam. Pokkle was a fellow passer, and Ponzu almost made it through to the last stage (and did fairly well to even survive it). The story has seen fit to give us brief updates on a few of Gon’s fellow examinees before, but there was never a real sense that they were going to return as significant characters. So that’s been a nice surprise, even if they were only brought back to add to the body count.