Ginga Kikoutai Majestic Prince – 22

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To sum up episode 22 of GKMP in two words: “Never mind.”  Or perhaps, “Lutier who?”

I don’t have all that much to say about this week’s Majestic Prince, honestly.  It was pretty good, which this show has rarely failed to achieve at the very least, but certainly didn’t feel like anything special.  The named-character death wasn’t too meaningful given how little we have invested in the character and the precedent that’s been set with the death of two-thirds of Team Dobermans, and the battle – while well-executed – isn’t quite as resonant as the very best the series has achieved.  And in the end, not much happened.

As always, GKMP is pretty reliable about following the rules.  And as such, there was no way anything really definitive was going to happen while the main character was grounded.  In fact probably the most interesting stuff in the episode happened to “Red 5, standing by” and not his colleagues on the battlefield.  Their day was strictly routine, but with Izuru we were treated to a surrealistically bizarre moment where everyone on the bridge of the flagship takes a tea and onigiri break while the battle is at its peak.  Not only that, but a rather clever sight-gag as the grounded teen pilot is quite literally attached to a leash to prevent him from defying order and sortieing with his mates.  Are you watching, Gundam show-runners at Sunrise?

There was a battle going on out there, and it wasn’t a bad one.  But in addition to Izuru, Jiart and Theoria are also still on the sidelines, so it could never have been anything more than a preliminary.  Lutier does indeed bite it, after a vigorous fracas with Tamaki (out to revenge Patrick) and a side of Asagi and Ange.  The entire mission real owes more to Star Wars Episode IV than any specific mecha anime – the goal is to get close enough to the Wulgaru gate to fire a target marker for the straggle laser (a very oddly named weapon) to blast it from the sky.  After much ado Asagi actually does manage to do just that, but the laser has no effect (imagine if that had happened at the end of Star Wars) because the Wulgaru have installed some sort of “high-energy barrier” which makes the gate impervious to anything except physical weaponry.  Photon torpedoes, anyone?

With two episodes left, it’s clear that Izuru, his mother and uncle will be taking to the fight – Uncle Jiart in fact as refused to sortie against “small fry”, as only Red-Five is good enough for him.  The real questions are under what circumstances Izuru will sortie, and whose death flags will be paid out in the end.  Chekov’s Gun theorists will no doubt suspect that the establishing of Asagi’s ability to pilot Red-Five means he must therefore do so in anger, but one way or another Izuru will be directly involved in the final reckoning – perhaps after his unit is damaged Asagi will borrow Red-Five and Jiart will kill him, thinking it’s Izuru – leaving the Izuru to avenge “Oni-san”.

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  1. A

    Slight correction: It's 24 episodes, so there's actually two episodes left. I hope it's enough to wrap everything up.

  2. I didn't realize it was finishing so early. Doesn't change my expectations but it's interesting.

  3. A

    I don't know about you, but I was honestly expecting something to go horribly wrong throughout the entire episode. It might not have happened after all was said and done, but it's not like I wasn't praying furiously for Asagi to survive and get that marker up there.

    I know it's predictable, but the fact remains that this show has earned that kind of tension, and now I'm really curious as to whether it'll go through with it or not.

  4. R

    yeah me too. i was expecting someone to die horribly in the race to get that marker to the gate (ok, so lutiel did die). i wasnt surprised that that strategy would fail miserably.

    i like how tamaki defeated lutiel not by sheer rage (as is common in mecha anime), but by working closely with the other rabbits.

    now this gets me wondering. with the way they are pacing the last four eps, i can't help but think that the news that the producers are considering a second season is just a ruse. who knows, they might actually have the potential second season planned out already.

  5. I

    I was wondering how many others saw the Star Wars comparison when watching this. I also thought it was a mediocre episode considering this is supposed to be the final big battle. I expected more from it.

    Also, the lunch scene in the middle of a battle was pretty jarring. It's like those spoofs you might see where the 19th century British Navy will stop in the middle of battle for a formal tea party. It was pretty weird.

    I expect more from these last two episodes, but given the preview, it doesn't look like Izuru going to get into the action until the finale.

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