All of the talk from the Production Committee about a potential second season of GKMP is interesting, because if any show over seemed right on track for a fully-realized finale in two cours it’s this one. The series has never been too frenetic in terms of pacing, laying out its story at a measured but not labored pace, and when it did establish the central plot it did so in no uncertain terms. It’s very clear what’s happening in this show, why it’s happening, and it seems as if everything has been perfectly timed for it to happen when it’s supposed to happen.
On the whole there’s a lot that happens as it’s supposed to happen in Majestic Prince. This is a show that’s of and all about anime mecha and classic sci-fi – while it has fun tweaking the tropes ironically (this is the 2010s after all) it very much reveres the groundwork laid by those series that have come before. And at this point in the story we’re supposed to have a setup episode, so that’s exactly what we got. Call it “calm before the storm” or whatever you like, but this was pure – it set the table for what was to come and made sure the stakes were well-established.
Alas, for GKMP doing all that also means setting a whole lot of death flags, which is why I can’t shake that nagging feeling we’re looking at a tragic ending. I keep waiting for Mushibugyou’s Oooka to show up with his trademark “That’s wrong!” here, as everyone is busily hoisting their own fatal banner – Izuru certainly holds the lead now that two-thirds of Dobermans are demised, but you can make a strong case for about half the cast. Indeed, one might almost say it’s a matter of whether Izuru or Asagi is more telegraphed to sacrifice themselves for the rest of the team, especially the other. Izuru has gone into full brother mode with Asagi now, which makes the latter pretty uncomfortable – yet it’s also revealed that Asagi’s mindset has now very much turned towards protecting his little brother no matter what. He also seems to have told the other Bunnies about the DNA situation despite telling Simon he hadn’t, which leads Tamaki to assign family roles to everyone except, of course, Suruga. That’a highly symbolic of the way Suruga’s character is constantly shafted in this show – it’s a shame and a waste of a solid performance by a very good seiyuu.
While there’s an annoying subplot surrounding Anna (Asagi’s loli admirer) refusing to evacuate the Star Rose, most of the attention on the episode is focused on Izuru’s fate and on Simon. The latter is stepping out of the shadows in a big way, taking command of the entire “Heaven’s Gate” (hope it turns out better than the movie) operation from the Star Rose, which he reveals to be built around a drive engine Theoria brought with her from Wulgaru. He also steps in personally regarding Izuru’s situation – refusing to allow him to sortie with the others but allowing him to be on standby on the flagship. There’s also a bit of a vibe between he and Theoria (who’s also fighting on the mission), which makes me suspect that the sharing of DNA might have been a little more low-tech than we were originally led to believe.
All the pieces, then, are seemingly in place. Both sides are headed for what they see as the final battle, declarations of love and familial support are flying left and right, bad cakes have been tasted and rejected, and the fate of two races is seemingly at stake. It seems a fait accompli that Izuru is going to end up taking the field in the end – it could hardly have been foreshadowed more strongly – and most likely he’ll have an encounter with Jiart which will be instrumental in deciding everything. While Majestic Prince has never quite soared to the heights of true greatness, it’s certainly done a fine job of cogently and entertainingly bringing us to this point, and I look forward to what happens now with a good deal of anticipation – and no small amount of dread.