What They Say:
Episode #44 “THE MAN WHO HOLDS THE SOUL”
The Arianrhod fleet, led by Rustal Elion, attempts to gather all its forces to fight the coup d’etat.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
This whole episode feels like everyone signing their own death warrants.
McGillis declares war on Gjallarhorn’s Arianrhod fleet, the only branch currently standing in his way. The rest of Gjallarhorn he either has under his control or they’re sitting out, hostages at their own table. McGillis is counting on the fairy tale that only the chosen one can sit in Bael’s cockpit. (He neglects to mention that it’s only because he’s had the AV procedure done.) It’s a stupid bit of symbolism that the old men in charge don’t put any credence in. The youngsters in the organization eat that shit up.
Probably most shocked by the revelation that Gaelio is alive are his father and sister. His father confronts McGillis, only for McGillis to wave the man away. Amira, the good brave foolish little girl that she is, goes through every emotion you can in the span of five minutes. She attempts to kill McGillis, and when she realizes that’s not gonna work, herself. McGillis thwarts both attempts and she realizes that everything is crazy. Poor girl.
Back at Tekkadan, Orga questions McGillis and his plan. McGillis tells him that war against Arianrhod was always a possibility. Orga isn’t satisfied with any of this, but he feels they’ve come too far to turn back now. For better or worse, this is their final battle. Que everyone in Tekkadan wonder exactly what that means. The smarter among them debate if this is the only way forward. The adults in the room, still referring to themselves as that, feel that they have to support the kids even if that means ushering them all to their doom. Kudelia realizes that she loves them all like family and basically prays that there’s a light at the end of this tunnel. It all feels very dark, a ‘once more unto the breach’ moment if ever there was one.
Meanwhile, on the other side at Arianrhod, Elion reflects on what’s going on. His calm assessment of the situation is the exact opposite of the fatalistic handwringing of Tekkadan. Gaelio can now walk around out of his disguise, and despite the change in his appearance and his serious demeanor, his words to Julieta feel very true to his character. However, we only have two ace pilots on one side (Iok isn’t an ace at anything except being a figurehead.) The organization had the numbers, numbers that Tekkadan might not even be able to match with their legendary Gundam in their arsenal.
The final battle awaits.
There’s definitely a last stand taking place here. One last battle, they all say. None of Tekkadan know how to live in a world that wasn’t a constant battle. Mika tells Atra that, even as he says he now fights so that he doesn’t have to see her cry. Orga feels that since he’s given his word he’s now backed into a corner. McGillis doesn’t care that nobody trusts him and that he basically has nobody on his side as long as his tools do what he needs them to do. It’s clear everything is going to go bad next week, it’s just unclear how bad and in what way. With everyone climbing into cockpits I expect at least a few deaths. I can’t expect that we’re getting five battle episodes though, so I wonder how this is all going to shake out.
Episode Grade: B+
Streamed by: Daisuki, Crunchyroll, Youtube, and Gundam.info in select regions.