A lot of backstory and set up episodes appeared this week. That means everything has less of an action focus, which is alright to me. Seeing characters develop in interesting ways and have the world explained a little more after huge action sequences is what most anime series usually do. I’m a sucker for plot development and good characters, so I don’t mind. Also, it allows the animators to rest their hands but that’s not the important thing, right?
Gundam Build Divers: Episode 20
Notes: About time Sarah’s backstory was revealed
This week’s focus was on Sarah. While the first part of the episode was dedicated to happy fun times with the group centered around montage of newcomer Nami pushing the Build Divers through different special tasks for special furniture and rewards, the rest of the episode was sad. We learn about what Sarah is, finally, and what her existence is doing to the Gundam Build Network. It turns out that Sarah is an anomaly and/or person created by left over data collection of people’s gunplay into the server. She is the passion that divers put into the game as they play it. You know how Riku’s mech suddenly had wings during a final boss fight? That was because of Sarah. Now her existence is putting all of the game’s servers into jeopardy. She runs away, the admins are creating an update to delete her, but the Build Divers want to find to save her. I thought this show would go this route, but I wish it went with the Build Diver’s tournament instead. Maybe it still will? It all depends on how fast this gets resolved.
Armored Trooper Votoms: Episodes 13-15
Notes: Yay new situations and characters
Last week, our heroes were attacking the police in Uoodo. The death of that city and its populace was assured. This week started out with the Melkian airborn unit dropping into Uoodo with tons of Scope Dog units. They attack the police in search for the prototype that was stolen from them in the first episode while our protagonist crew of four (Chirico, Cocona, Vanila, and Gotho) are stuck in the middle trying to do the same thing. In the end, nobody gets what they want, because the protype got away when newer unit of Votoms comes in the last second to surprise everyone from an organization called the specials. Man, that was a completely nuts last episode of an arc with awesome battles and explosions causing destruction everywhere we looked. Such good stuff. That being said, I like the next arc a little more from what I’ve seen.
After the destruction of Uoodo (thank god), Chirico joins a mercenary unit in the country of Kummen that is currently undergoing a civil war. The whole situation reminds me of what I’ve seen in Vietnam War movies and documentaries because the lay out of whole arc so far is just jungles and swamps. You know, we have the camera focused on our heroes and the unknown enemy attacks from the who knows where whenever they feel like it. Seems kind of familiar to me. Anyway, I feel like this arc has a lot more potential to it. Not only we have our three other characters in a situation that doesn’t involve them possibly dying all the time because they run a bar, Chirico has a very unique and complex relationship with his commandeering officers, and some of his unit members have some fun interactions with him. I like the whole thing so far. I also like how the story continues from the last arc, because Chirico’s girlfriend is still battling him in another mech. We don’t know why yet. Such fun stuff. Can’t wait for more of this.
Planet With: Episode 8
Notes: Oh, there’s the downtime episode I was waiting for
After seven episodes of insanely fast paced action and plot development, episode eight is a little slower in pace and a set up episode for what is to come in the show’s final conflict. Torai, the first character that had his power stolen and Benika, who gave up transforming power a few episodes ago, are this episode’s real highlight characters. Torai was the former fire fighter who seems to be helping out in the wreckage of episode six’s climatic boss fight. Benika used to be a cop whose partner was shot from a nice kid who felt ultimate power when he was holding a gun. Wow, topical. Their interactions, from when Benika met Torai helping out the people to eventual mech fight felt very genuine in nature. Even if there mech fight didn’t have a lot of focus and came into passing, it’s just nice to see people fight for their ideals, you know? Can I be Benika when I grow up? Her confidence and no-nonsense way of living is what I aspire to.
On the other end of the anime, we see our protagonist Souya Kuroi going out on a date with Nozo. They are so cute together. Especially when Kuroi refuses to fight when shiraishi, who is the Sealing faction’s Ginko, urges him to and Nozo defends his point of view. I also like that Kuroi is stick with his not fighting thing, even though he might be fighting the actual dragon in the future. A lot of complicated yet not complicated issues here and I like it. The only downsides to this episode are the fanservice. Did Benika have to be naked in a hot spring when she gave her backstory to generalissimo and then step out of it without covering herself from the others? I guess that does show confidence that she knows who she is. Did Shiraishi have to try and seduce Souya with illusionary boobs? Nah, but it does show that Shiraishi is manipulating people with things she doesn’t have. Did we have to have the classic wind powers and skirt thing almost happening? Nah, but it ended after a second. Maybe I don’t have that much to complain about after all.