Kyosuke’s time with the military is hugely educational – and damning.
What They Say:
Kyosuke has been chosen to represent the E.S.P unit in the Navy war games. The Units future is on his shoulders.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
While the show may have seemed a little off by doing such a big back story episode in the middle of the season, it was instructive enough to give fans of this particular a show a look at who Kyosuke is. While we got some material on his younger days in Psychic Squad before, most of it was focused on his time spent in the military and how things went down from there. So getting more of his youth and how he ended up in the military and the ways it changed him helps to flesh out the largely enigmatic character all the more. He’s had some neat moments along the way, but there’s been that air of mystery about him. Seeing him in pilot gear and flying through his own abilities over the countryside before the war got underway is something that humanizes him all the more.
What complicates things in this time period when it comes to Kyosuke is the way that Fujiko, someone he admired, has gone so far around the bend with her superiority complex. The whole next evolution of humanity isn’t a surprising card to play, but based on her youth and past it doesn’t click all that well at times. But other events have shaped her in a less than clear way and we see the scope of her powers and real skill in a big way as the practice matches have them going against each other and Fujiko taking on some of the best pilots of the day. There’s some real skill to the pilots and the craft, but each side has their advantages and it comes down to both skill and luck more than anything else. But for those like Fujiko, she can’t believe that and just has that certainty about who she is and what she is to define her.
With a large portion of this focusing on the matches, and then shifting to some actual combat operations, it’s a pretty busy episode with what it wants to accomplish. The ESP Unit that’s put together here isn’t exactly smoothly working together in all ways, but they’re definitely coming together well overall due to some of the good, strong personalities that can help to massage things. And even those that are younger, like Kyosuke, are able to see ways to deal with the situation as they set themselves against an American submarine. The really fun twist is when in the midst of everything, a group of dolphins make their case for political asylum. Though it’s a difficult combat position they’re all in, we see more of the growth and evolution of Kyosuke’s mindset because of those around him and how they view the world, helping him to shape his views.
With this part of the back story, we learn some key things about Kyosuke’s growth and place in the world at this young age, things that have stuck with him for decades since. With the kind of long reach that he has because of his abilities and age, his views certainly do change in small and subtle ways over the years, but a lot of who we are becomes defined at a particular age. Kyosuke’s youth is certainly engaging as he becomes a part of the ESP Unit and finds his place among those with abilities similar to his, while trying to come to grips with Fujiko’s worldview that still feels alien to him. There’s some good growth to the character here, but those other formative moments that we saw in the other series make their impact here as well, where he’s viewed as someone who will bring ruin to the world. It’s hard to not see that point of it as well based on what he’s doing in the present day, though a lot of it is just preordained by what happened in the past.
Streamed By: Crunchyroll
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