Captain Earth – 08

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If you stepped up to a roulette table and the dealer was a 17 year-old kid, wouldn’t that set up a few alarm bells that something wasn’t right??

I was going to question the logic of a casino that (naturally) doesn’t allow minors as customers but does allow them to be dealers.  But then, when you have the Yakuza running things (in Japan as in America, that’s a consistent part of legally sanctioned gambling) and the dealer has the ability to make balls go wherever he wants them (Orgone energy indeed) sticking such a minor at the roulette table makes perfect sense.  And that’s where we’re introduced to Jin (Uchiyama Kouki, who seems to be in just about everything these days).

I must confess, things in Captain Earth are becoming remarkably coherent for a BONES sci-fi original.  The newest turn in the story introduces us to the newest Designer Child, the aforementioned roulette dealer – a boy who has no memory of his true nature and drifts along seemingly disinterested in what life has to offer.  He’s one of the “Missing Five” which presumably refers to the eight ego blocks created in the Kanda Incident.  That means more creepy kiddos to come, but for now the focus is on Zimbalt – which is Jin’s true identity as a Planetary Gear, and the one he reassumes as soon as Moco’s telepathic kiss restores his memories.  The Planetary gears are becoming impatient, it seems, with the continued success of Globe in foiling their plans.

This is an interesting near-future vision of Odaiba, with a mob-owned casino that looks exactly like the Bellagio in Vegas (state-sanctioned casinos have been a matter of some debate in Japan, including on Odaiba – and the main champion of the idea has been right-wing zealot and Bill 156 creator Ishihara Shintarou) – clearly a political statement by BONES here.  And into this steps Daichi’s new Scooby Gang, sent to Odaiba to break up the Planetary Gears’ efforts to create a new Kill-T Gang (again, it’s Pitz that provides the intel).  The running gag with Daichi’s irritation at being called “Captain” gets old pretty quickly, but this is a turn in the plot that has quite a bit of potential.

There are some other tidbits tossed out there as well, the most interesting of which is Zimbalt’s “We are the real humans” comment.  It seems that the Planetary Gears have humans working for them  – at the very least, their maintenance guys betray nothing that makes them look remotely alien or even distinctive.  There’s certainly some background here that hasn’t been disclosed yet, and the line where human ends and alien begins may not be so clearly defined.  That would certainly apply to “Neoteny” Daichi, who has extraordinary abilities that can’t be explained away the way Teppei and Hana’s have been.

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  1. R

    The episode was a bit on the clunky side (the way it jumped back and forth from Zin/Jin and the kids was off), but nevertheless a decent one. It actually proves quite an interesting introduction to Zinbalt. I guess they will go on an extended arc introducing the other designer children from here on.

    I also liked that hint that there is something brewing within Teppei about his purpose in the team. This could prove an interesting turning point later on. Though you seem to forgot to mention that, Enzo.

  2. m

    Do you think Daiichi's dads amulet has something to do with the powers? I didn't go back and check bc it would be a pain, but did Daiichi/Teppei both have it on them when they activated the livlaster? Maybe it's nothing, but it might have something to do with having those powers.

  3. R

    In the case of Daiichi, he didn't have the amulet when he first gained his livlaster. Teppei only gave it back when they met again after a long time. And as far as i know, it's him who "won" the amulet again. so the amulet is probably not connected to their powers. But, yeah, I have also always thought that that amulet would become important in the story somehow.

  4. m

    Thanks, I didn't feel like going to check that out myself. It at least signifies that the person who just gave it away is about to do something amazing and get it back, so I guess that would mean Teppei is up for some display of power with his livlaster. Which I still don't get what that is though. Or why Hana was in a weird orb. She's an alien? Created by the invaders?

  5. R

    From what I get of the previous episodes, Hana is indeed somehow connected to the Kiltgang, either created by them or one of them IDK. But yeah, I guess this is still the big problem with CE for me. We're a third of the way in and a lot of the series convoluted mythos still doesn't make sense. Yeah, we know that something mysterious is under there, but what?

  6. m

    Yeah I enjoy the show in a "if you don't think too deeply or question things too much its fun" sort of way, but it is confusing on certain things. It gives this feeling that by the time the climax comes, there won't be enough time to really do it properly. That or things will just never be explained.

  7. We have two cours – I think there's plenty of time to explain everything. In a BONES way, of course (which may mean not explaining much at all).

  8. m

    I'll let the underage dealer slide bc it's another country and I don't know how regulated that is over in Japan (obviously it wouldn't be likely to ever occur though). Though in America getting a job at a casino is one of the hardest things to do. Not only do they have classes to train you for that stuff (mostly poker dealers have a lot of training bc to deal properly and shuffle (though with auto shufflers that's not needed as much), but they run insanely extensive background checks so they don't hire thieves. I did get a good laugh at the notion of a casino having to find ways to "cheat" the people gambling there. As if there could ever be a casino that lost money annually, semi-annually, monthly, or weekly. I doubt there's been a large number of days that a casino has lost money.

    That kid was 100% wasting his powers. How do you work at a casino, and it never occurs to you to use your skill to win an unlimited supply of money? It's not the flashiest superpower ever thought up, but it might just be the most practical.

    I hope they chill out with that "are you guys really gonna call me Captain" gag. It was funny at first, but if that's a long running gag it'll be pretty annoying to hear multiple times each episode. I think they're holding off on the explanation of Daiichi's power until they get some of the "hidden 5" to join their team. It seems like Teppei now shares that power seeing as he got a livlaster after "becoming human". I don't think all of the remaining designer children will join up with the planetary gears. You need one more member of team earth to get that 5 man band trope going (unless pitz counts). Hopefully once a few more are introduced, well see Teppei get his own Mecha and find out more about these livlasters and where/what those powers are all about.

  9. R

    The humans working with Moco and Amara are part of Macbeth Corporation, and, judging from dialogue both they and the CEO have had, no one there realizes that their designer children are also the aliens trying to kill them all.

    Anyway, hopefully our heroes will be able to rescue at least some of the other children. It would be a shame if all of them turned into crazy human-hating murderers.

  10. m

    This is random, but it's the only Mecha show you're covering so I figured I'd ask here. Did you not count Break Blade bc it's just the movies shortened into episode form, or bc you don't like it? I love the manga, but found I wasn't as big a fan of the movies when it veered off from the manga storyline. But the manga I like bc it's one of those rare instances where they'll kill of somewhat prominent characters without it become like AoT or Elfen Leid where they make everyone have hyper extreme personalities. Or where everyone is evil and everything is horror. I don't think you get enough shows/manga like that. Darker than normal shounen, but not all the way to the other extreme.

  11. What do you mean, "not count"? In terms of Break Blade I don't really consider it new material so I wouldn't normally cover it in any event, though I'm not necessarily a huge fan. Haven't read the manga.

    Some would consider Sidonia a mecha show, though I think it's a borderline call. Certainly that isn't what it is first and foremost.

  12. m

    I just meant I didn't notice break blade in your season list, or anyone's that I looked at. That could be I didn't notice it, but it seemed like people were skipping it bc it wasn't anything new. The movies rushed through the manga too much, and when it started with anime original stuff it was a lot worse. Sort of to the degree which FMA:Brotherhood was better than FMA.
    Haha I forgot Sidonia because I stopped watching it. I'll watch it all when its done airing and I can the whole thing in a few days. I didn't like it enough to wait for it each week.

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