Captain Earth – 12

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The first rule of Immortal Yakuza Fight Club is you do not talk about Immortal Yakuza Fight Club.

Captain Earth is starting to get positively Valvraveian in its plotting.  You name it, we’re seeing it – and my initial suspicion that this was an amalgam of sci-fi and mecha tropes in general in much the same way Valvrave was a one-stop compendium of Sunrise history may just be holding true.  I feel now as I did then that CE is less BONES-specific than Valvrave was Sunrise-specific – more of a general survey course in sci-fi anime as a whole – but at the halfway point there’s the same sense of every possible ingredient being dumped into the pot, without the chef having much certainty about whether the finished dish will taste right.

This episode brought us back to the Designer Child of the Week format, but to a certain extent it did feel quite different from earlier examples.  For starters, while Baku (Toyonaga Toshiyuki) – Planetary Gear name “Bugbear” – is obviously the last DC and obviously important, there’s a sense that other revelations and possibly other characters introduced (or re-introduced) are even more so.  And the episode ends without giving us a clear idea on which side Bugbear is going to end up.

The focus for much of the episode is the fight club that’s held somewhere beneath the streets of Tokyo.  It’s run by the same Yakuza gang that controls the Odaiba casino, and we even see the same strongman, Kariya Haruhiko (Onozuka Takashi) that was in charge of Zin acting as a kind of ringleader here.  The head of the family is played by either Hayami Sho or Nakata Jouji – to be honest I always find it hard to tell them apart – and he and his daughter (who Kariya is obviously interested in and possibly engaged to) are involved in several mysteries.  She’s sweet on Baku, and plagued nightly by terrible dreams – dreams which it seems are connected to a new wildcard.  That would be the “Magus incident” – which might just be a boating disaster in which the Ojou-sama was drowned.  That same daughter was also brought to the fight club by her father and “chose” Baku – though just what that means isn’t really explained.

As if all that weren’t enough, it turns out that Kariya is apparently immortal himself.  After Amara and Moko break up a fight club evening re-introducing themselves to Bugbear he and his goons give chase, Zin extracts a little revenge against his old nemesis by running his heart through with a red-hot steel beam.  But Kariya wakes up in the ambulance after he’s been declared dead, and declares himself undead (literally).  It seems very likely that he and the Ojou-sama at the very least are immortal – or at least brought back from the dead in her case – and her father is clearly a candidate for strange goings-on as well.

Almost halfway in, it’s still an open question how well all of this is going to work.  There’s some interesting intrigue here, and it seems very clear there are multiple conspiracies at work rather than a single unifying good vs. evil dynamic – I think perhaps the biggest question of all being whether or not there’s any actual alien involvement here or not.  Captain Earth can plant the seeds but at some point it’s going to have to prove that it can provide compelling answers, too.  The other concern I have is that the character development of the Midsummer’s Knights has gotten pretty stagnant with all these DC introduction eps, especially Daichi’s.  The scene where Hana kissed him while he slept was cute, but he’s been so little involved of late and she’s gotten so little development period that it didn’t have the impact it otherwise might.  This was a pretty good ep on the whole – not as good as last week’s but better than the several before – but I’m still on the fence about CE’s long-term prospects.

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  1. s

    The second rule of immortal Yakuza fight club is…. YOU DONT TALK ABOUT IMMORTAL YAKUZA FIGHT CLUB!!

  2. I

    An interesting episode if a little boring in comparison with last week, not much going on, it really just seems like a more drawn-out two-part version of the same-old “Designer Child of the Week” thing that has been getting on my last nerve.

    Baku’s not really that interesting, and he keeps saying he doesn’t want them to mess up the life he has now, and I really just find that kind of sad. What life?! You’re a slave to the yakuza that is given scraps and thinks of it as freedom just because you’ve got a crush on the boss’ daughter, whose got a death flag the size of Utah. If anyone needed some liberating, it’s probably you. You’re just so sad, it’s pitiful.

    Other than that, the only really interesting parts was Red-head DC (I can’t remember these kids names for the life of me. LOL) killing the Yakuza thug and the guy suddenly becoming immortal. What’s up with that? Actually another comment suggested that perhaps after the tragic "Magus incident" the Yakuza, including the head and his daughter, were killed, and that through some act of Baku, they were resurrected and are now immortal. That’s actually a really good theory. That through some tragic incident (maybe even Baku himself was the cause), the ship and all the yakuza aboard were killed. Traumatized by the death of his one friend, Baku somehow used his powers and perhaps his connection to his own immortality to extend to those on the sunken ship, and therefore bringing them all back to life. However, the unnatural over-extension of their lives causes them to constantly have nightmares of what happened that day, and though none of the Yakuza know exactly what happened, they do have a feeling that something is wrong. The Yakuza thug that was killed is immortal because not only has his life been extended unnaturally, but he might be sustained by Baku’s alien immortality. Unfortunately, this type of setup never sustains in anything I’ve seen and eventually whatever Baku did is going to be undone somehow. Because of the mental trauma of the incident, his mind probably blocked out the incident. If his mind is ever reset to it’s original self, then, it could be that whatever he did to sustain the Yakuza’s lives with unravel and the girl he loves will die. However, I have no doubt that whatever side he chooses, this will happen anyway. Death is a certainty and the girl has been living on stolen time as it is.

    Well, at least that part makes me intrigued.

    I’m still waiting for this show to amp it up, let’s see what next week brings. You're right on the development of the Midsummer Knights. It's been a long time since I've seen an MC as underdeveloped as Daichi, especially at this point in the series, and Hana is even worse. She might as well be a cardboard cutout. Akari and Teppei are okay, but even they have been one-note as of late. And their stupidity annoys me so much. I wanted to slap Daichi so hard when he said that they still had to look for the DC and get to him first. Umm, how about THE GUY AMAROK WAS PRACTICALLY FLIRTING WITH?!!! Get a clue you stupid teenage idiots!

    Anyway, hopefully now that all the DCs have been found for the most part, we can get on to developing the plot.

  3. E

    That was a very interesting theory, that I don't realize, probably because I treat this anime as mere entertainment to waste some free time, lol.
    Enzo only mentioned the ojou and Kariya, but seeing how their nameless driver have the same bad dream, all of them are probably dead, drowned on that day.
    And, of course you can't die when you are already dead.

  4. Indeed, I forgot about the driver's comment.

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