Blade Runner: Black Lotus – Episode 4

Typing this out, I wasn’t originally planning on writing about this series more at all. I thought that first impression post would have been enough until I inevitably write my larger blog post by the end of the watch period or make a short podcast episode like I did with Getter Robo ARC. But you know what? I feel at least a little motivated in sharing this one a bit more with people because as far as I know in terms of bloggers, no one else is doing it and I like this series. Why not continue to write about it? I’ve had some more free time to do it, so why not? So, let’s discuss Blade Runner: Black Lotus Episode 4.

A Look At The Story

On a story level, this is the easiest one to write about so far. Mainly because this episode was half a flash back that we saw already. At this point, we know that Elle is a replicant and that she is a super bad ass. We also know that she was hunted by rich executives for sport and sometime before that, we got a tattoo of a black lotus while sun bathing. So, this episode finally drew all of those elements together. We see her harrowing backstory of surviving the slaughter of replicants who are almost human as they are killed. Not just because they are unarmed, but because they are designed not to even attack humans. Perfect lambs for the slaughter.

The biggest edge of element to all of these things leads to Elle making that change. Being pushed into a situation where her rage and kill program took over after seeing a person who just befriended be slaughtered. Then thus riding a truck back into LA with the recording device to take on everyone who was involved with that slaughter. Working with the hacker named J who was involved in the project too, this finally established her main goal for the entire episode. Her role as the lone replicant in L.A. hunting down those people who caused that disaster. It’s a great way to set up the plot of this slow by very well realized story going forward.

The most interesting part of this episode was what happened after that fact. For all that we’ve seen of Officer Davis on the streets kicking ass and taking names, the office is a location where she is just a rookie or treated as a nothing. This could have been her case (in which she probably will investigate Elle off the record) because her intuition is obviously so strong that one could say she is being guided by the plot itself. Then of course, the officer in the show is someone from Blade Runner movies and one of the people involved in that slaughter. I think the guy obviously knows who Elle is and is worried about a great many things. So yeah, I like all these established things.

Some Visual Talk

On Black Lotus’ character visual level, I always feel like it is almost there to being perfect. There is just something off about how the hands move or the hair physics is handled in this show that feels so off putting or out of place for everyone. Yet the character models are not really in that uncanny valley which one would expect them to be. I think that has to do with how each of these characters moves like a human being. Not just standing and their facial motions, but the way characters act in resting or how they just move so organically. I’ve seen a lot of cg anime and not a lot of series have mastered that sort of movement motion captured or otherwise.

I’m also still really charmed by retro future things and Blade Runner: Black Lotus is just that in spades. There are some obvious redone shots of Blade Runner famous things, but the old junk feeling of the technology of this world is really do die for. I just love the clunkiness of all the devices in J’s apartment with the mixture of what these pieces of technology would be like from the og Blade Runner a bit more into the future. The cars are just so good too along with the streets and other things. It’s just all so wonderful to me for so many reasons too. Maybe that is why I like this series as much as I do so far…but I don’t care. Judge if you want, haha.

Overall Thoughts

Not the strongest episode of this show at all, but I feel like the over all examination of Elle’s backstory needed to happen to solidify what happens in her story afterwards. This is the real start of the plot of Blade Runner: Black Lotus and I am very excited to see it honestly. Davis’ own story was brought into perspective in a way that will show the fall out in the LAPD afterwards against the cities only replicant that was left unaccounted before in that massacre. Just some interesting things. Very interested to see what happens in episode 5 coming soon!

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