ERASED #4 – Anyone who’s read a few sf stories about trying to undo mistakes of the past is going to see that twist coming a mile away. Of course she’s going to vanish the moment everyone lets their guard down. Still, there’s some room for suspense: Is she already dead? If she is, does Satoru have to wait another 18 years for another try? Or does he only get one chance to fix things?
Satoru is becoming an unreliable narrator as memories resurface. He didn’t know that sandbagging in the ice skating race had already turned out badly once before, nor that he’d known Kayo well enough to approach her when they bumped into each other at the science center.
He’s doing a little better at fixing his own life than Kayo’s. Before, he didn’t invite anyone over for a party, and he and his mom had to eat $50 worth of sandwich fixings themselves. Now he’s learning the joy of opening up to his friends. I just hope the end result of this series isn’t that a bunch of unpreventable murders only serve to make Satoru a better person.
Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans #17 – It’s been a while since we’ve gotten a mech battle, so Iron-Blooded Orphans goes all out to get everyone involved. Gjallarhorn is fighting to crush all dissent, Tekkadan is fighting for survival, Gaelio is fighting for his pride, and Ein… is upset that someone gave his old mentor’s mech a tacky respray job? Oh, come on.
After giving Gjallarhorn’s best a moderately satisfying thrashing, Mikazuki, Akihiro, and Shino can stand together with pride, and then worry together at the fact that coming up next is Earth’s entire home defense fleet. This is something that will take a different fighting still to defeat. Kudelia, having decided that the problems of the oppressed everywhere are her problems, has found some leverage that might work. What, though? “Your spy is dead” doesn’t seem like enough.
Meanwhile, the mysterious stranger in the bird mask is now being ominous on the Gjallarhorn flagship rather than the Dorts. I’m pretty sure by now that that’s Fareed; no idea what he’s up to that he couldn’t do without the mask. Any guesses?
BBK/BRNK #4 – And there’s the confirmation that this is a battle between Ōbu and Entei, matching the individual bubuki wielders limb for limb. Or it should be, only most of Entei was destroyed in the fight 24 years ago. The evil plan is to graft Ōbu’s limbs on as replacements, either out of spite or because there is no other ready source of matched parts (they couldn’t, say, use that “headless” buranki that fell off of Takarajima a couple episodes ago?).
So there is to be a series of duels. No other bubuki can actively interfere, but it’s apparently okay to force one to go into protection mode, or have your friends show up to help with a very large, mobile, blunt instrument. I’ve heard of loopholes you can drive a train through, but this is ridiculous.
Next it’s going to be the left hands’ turn, who turn out to know each other already too. So do the right-foot wielders. None of them want to maim and kill each other quite as intensely as Kogane and Matobai, but it seems everyone has a relationship of some sort with their complement.
There’s a theme of complementary personalities going on, too: Azuma’s passiveness versus his sister’s outgoing nature; Kogane’s hotheadedness versus Matobai’s iciness; and possibly at least one other. When Arabashiri catches up with the carrier, he greets Horino like an old acquaintance and implies that she’s not who she seems. She does look an awful lot like Reoko’s fourth minion, doesn’t she? In which case she, the (apparent) pacifist, would be destined to go up against Hīragi, the guy who’s all eager to fight someone.
Utawarerumono: The False Faces #17 – There is very little to complain about with this episode, other than the fact that most of it should have happened about twelve weeks ago. If the emperor missed his family that badly, why not explain everything the minute he realized who Haku was? It didn’t even do much to add to the mystery or drama of the situation; the people of Yamato would still have had to go to war, Haku would still have been dragged into it, and he’d still have been left feeling the way he did afterward.
And it could have stopped some retroactive squickiness on the viewers’ part from realizing that the Kamunagi who have been fawning over Haku are technically his own nieces. Eww.
Still, there is some satisfaction in finally having most of an explanation. It’s still not clear how Haku survived the plague or why he was in suspended animation for so long (though those might be the answers to each other) or what woke him up.
For the last chunk of the story, it looks like the action is moving to Tuskuru, site of the first Utawarerumono. The tomb at issue is probably that of the protagonist from the first series, who was the “Iceman” mentioned in passing this episode.
Active Raid #4 – Active Raid has shown a fine understanding of technical issues on the computer security front, but I do not think airplanes and aerodynamics work like that. Or that. Or that.
While our heroes stumble through another trap laid by Logos, we get the first flickering of his ultimate plot. The Japanese government has a very important database, code-named Orochi, “The Great Serpent” (after Yamata-no-Orochi, the eight-headed, eight-tailed dragon of Japanese mythology). Orochi is divided between three different physical storage locations. Since the one featured this week was “Ro”, I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that the other two are designated “O” and “Chi”.
Requiring the plane to stay within a certain range of the “Ro” datacenter allows Logos to hack into it, so he’s working through some device on the plane. It could have been something attached to the bomb, or some passenger’s compromised personal device. If the latter, it’s a good bet it was something belonging to the grumpy Diet member, who is no doubt going to be back to cause the Eighth Unit grief.