That was a pretty impressive display of character deaths, both in terms of volume and importance.
I’m certainly no closer to knowing how next week’s episode is going to end all this, though whether that’s a good or a bad thing I’m not sure. This week seemed for a while to be mostly clearing the field of extraneous characters for a focus on the core group, but the last moments of the ep put a rest to that notion. There’s an ad hoc quality to the last few episodes that has be a bit worried about whether the ending is going to be completely FUBAR, but at least we’ll only have to wait one more week to find out.
That Fram should buy the farm (though not on Eden, sadly) this week could hardly have been less surprising. Along with Seric (Seric!) she’s had by far the most death flags of anybody in this arc, and the only surprise is that she lasted as she did. But I’ll give AGE some credit for contriving a fairly moving scenario surrounding her death, probably the most compelling sequence of the episode. Not only did she die at Zaeheart’s hands, but he specifically gave her the fatal order – one she carried out willingly. It was a sort of a last all-in bet for Zaeheart, full commitment to the eugenicist’s master plan – and when it failed, that left Zaeheart pretty much broken beyond repair.
It’s a remarkable list of dead – not even counting the most important one we have Fram, Obright, Zanald, Leil, Jonathan, and the Diva itself – which along with Obright was probably given the most GAR sendoff of the bunch. But I didn’t expect Zaeheart himself to join the list before the actual finale. He was clearly going around the bend, seeing visions of all his dead comrades urging him to sacrifice half his forces to wipe out the Gundams, then taunting him after he failed miserably. It was all over so quickly – he jumped into his Gundam Legilis in a rage and got himself killed by Asemu in what felt like 15 seconds, without even deploying his A-list weapons. Considering the depth of the love-hate bromance between Zaeheart and Aseumu that’s spanned over half the series I really expected more, both in terms of the fight and the tearful goodbye. So long, Z – you may have been the worst military commander ever, but at least you died in pursuit of the sick and twisted dream of a dying old man.
So what now? Who knows. With Ezelcant on his deathbed none of the big dogs of the Vagan are even left, apart from the clone – perhaps this is going to come down to the Vagan being crushed and Fit having them defenseless and broken, and deciding to show mercy and not genocide the lot of them. That would be pretty anti-climactic, to be honest – and it feels as if the moral conflict surrounding Kio’s pacifism has been completely marginalized as the last few eps have mostly been extended battle sequences. With Zaeheart gone whatever tangential role Asemu had seems largely undercut, too. I guess the series will end as it started, with Flit in the spotlight. It’s going to be a surprise, frankly, if AGE can come up with something cohesive that gives closure to the more interesting themes the series has developed – but I’ll certainly give it a chance to prove me wrong.