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Soukou no Strain – 03

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Summary:
A seriously damaged Gambee arrives in the hanger bay and the pilot requires immediate medical attention. A medic named Becky is met with an outpouring of blood when she removes the pilot’s helmet and finds Sara. Running out of time, she panics trying to find the switch for the seat belt, and the nearby instructor soon declares that Sara Cruz is dead. Fortunately, all of this was only part of training. Sara and her classmates are currently aboard the warship Libertad for their sub-light-speed maneuvers and have been away from Basion for four days, though a month’s time has actually already passed on that planet (because of time dilation). After her shower, Sara once again finds her uniform torn to shreds, so she has no choice but to wear her bloodied flight suit all the way back to her room to change. Along the way, Lottie attempts to talk to her again, but Sara barely speaks back. Lottie reveals to Jessie afterwards that she’s interested in Sara because she feels that Sara resembles herself.
Upon her return, Sara has to endure the insults from her roommates until she’s done changing clothes. She then heads for the hanger where Emily is kept and where Melchisedec and Carmichael are working on the Strain. Emily has been cleaned up and Sara has even made a lace headband for the doll. Melchisedec meanwhile has been having problems with the repairs, but he has a lot of faith that if the Strain could move, it could sway the tide of war. When the time for the sub-light-speed combat maneuvers finally comes, the Gambee pilots learn that they are being relegated to being gun batteries because of their limited mobility. Unfortunately, Sara’s Gambee doesn’t even start up and so she’s forced to sit out the exercise. From the control room, she listens as their instructor tells the others not to get separated from the mothership and not to attack directly ahead because they’re traveling at sub-light-speed. Over on one of the escort ships flying ahead of the Libertad, the crew has detected TUMORs, though at first they don’t think that the enemy will attack a ship with no strategic value. By the time they see Deague approaching from the front, it’s already too late for the escort ship.
The news quickly reaches the Libertad and preparations begin for a real battle. Sara wants to help out, but she’s got no Gambee to pilot. When the second escort ship launches its’ four Strains, the Gloire-type Strain accompanying the Tumors quickly destroys them all and the ship too. Knowing that it’s Ralph Werec attacking, the commander of the Libertad orders all of the students to sortie, including the Strain pilots. While the Strains are to go ahead, the Gambees are to defend the mothership from the Tumors. The Strains have no trouble launching from their special catapults, but the inexperienced Gambee pilots have a hard time making their way through the access tunnels to their posts. When Sara learns that there’s a Strain among the enemy that could be Ralph Werec, her eyes go wide with shock. Since she can’t go out to space, she frustratingly questions why she’s there. In the battle outside, Lottie watches as one of her allied Strains accidentally kills itself trying to shoot Tumors that are in directly front of it. She personally doesn’t care about the Tumors and wants instead to find Ralph Werec, for whom she has a deep hatred. A group of the Tumors manages to reach the Libertad and comes face to face with the deployed Gambees. Isabella becomes their first victim as she’s pulled off the surface of the ship and blown up.
The Gloire-type meanwhile continues to destroy Strains and the damage reports start to pour in: the Libertad’s acceleration rate is decreasing and they’ve lost a chunk of their forces. Lottie’s friends Jessie, Dickon, and Carris are all still alive, though Lottie herself is still after Ralph Werec. She finally finds him after he destroys another pair of Strains and heads in his direction. Sara meanwhile has gotten a certain feeling and has come back to the hanger where Emily sits. She intends to board the Strain, but Carmichael points out that she doesn’t have a Mimic. In response, Sara claims that she does indeed have one: Emily. Carmichael continues to resist because Emily is someone else’s Mimic, but Melchisedec thinks that it’s ok for her to go ahead. With his permission, Sara takes Emily and plugs the doll into the front of the cockpit. She knows that a Strain cannot be moved with another person’s Mimic, but she also felt that Emily was calling to her earlier. When she asks Emily to allow her to see her brother, Sara suddenly finds herself naked in a tunnel of light. Much to Melchisedec and Carmichael’s surprise, the Strain starts moving, meaning that the two have the miracle that they were just talking about. After her Strain is released from the back of the Libertad, Sara heads for her brother.

Preview:

Soukou no Strain   03   Preview 01 Soukou no Strain   03   Preview 02 Soukou no Strain   03   Preview 03

Boy am I glad that Isabella was one of the first to die since she was such a despicable girl. In a way, it’s probably thanks to Isabella’s sabotage that Sara’s Gambee didn’t start and she wasn’t sent out to be slaughtered like a grunt as the others were. Oddly enough, Isabella and Mary from the first episode were both voiced by Tanaka Rie and both are already dead.
In any case, Ralph has attacked again and Sara gets an unexpected chance to confront her brother. This time though, she has the mysterious Strain (called RAM-DASS) and the mysterious Emily on her side. I had thought Emily would come to life or something by now, but so far the doll has been pretty lifeless, unless you count Sara feeling that it was calling to her. The RAM-DASS meanwhile looks like it could go head-to-head with Ralph’s Gloire-type, but I doubt that Sara’s up to his skill level. And with Lottie also after Ralph, I get the feeling that the two girls might end up competing against each other to get to Ralph. Or maybe Lottie will want to kill him and Sara will try to protect him because she doesn’t want her brother to die or something. Speculation aside, the preview for next episode does seem to show Lottie quite angry at Sara, so something is going to happen between them.
Finally, I have to say that I wish that this episode hadn’t ended in the middle of a battle because that just makes me want to see more. So far, Soukou no Strain has been quite impressive as a series.

November 18, 2006 at 1:50 am
33 comments »
  • November 18, 2006 at 2:04 amLeah.rc

    OOOhh – first comment. Anyways, Really by Tanaka Rie? Cools. Hmm..getting interesting..

  • November 18, 2006 at 2:06 amKaito

    I assure you, episode 4 will be even more impressive. :)

    Show Spoiler ▼

  • November 18, 2006 at 2:12 amKiri

    hmm like interesting episode… good..:)

  • November 18, 2006 at 2:21 amXellos^_-

    I only watch the first 2 ep on a whim and am I glad i did. This is probably the best series of the season and defintely the most under hype of any series this season.

    And yes, Isbella’s death was one of the most rewarding ever.

    Considering Strain’s director is continuing Tomino’s kil them all style, the question now becomes who is next?

  • November 18, 2006 at 2:31 amCigansky

    Isabella -was- a bitch, but she wasn’t totally worthless. Sara -was- being awfully unlikeable and arrogant, and Isabella seemed actually pretty focused on wanting to help in the war. I could have easily seen her ending up turning a new leaf. But this is obviously not the kind of anime where a bunch of students can go into a real battle and miraculously win battle after battle untouched *cough*Starship Operators*cough*

  • November 18, 2006 at 3:44 amAki

    lol i actually to perverse delight when i saw isabella getting raped by the tumors……i kinda disliked her from the start…and frankly i was hoping for a more horrible death….like say getting sucked out of her gambee or smth..

  • November 18, 2006 at 3:54 amGil

    How many eps are out?

  • November 18, 2006 at 3:58 ampsgels

    Kaito:

    Show Spoiler ▼

  • November 18, 2006 at 3:59 amRasmiel

    Isabella seemed actually pretty focused on wanting to help in the war

    Are you kidding me? She was clearly focused on getting more honor for herself. Many of her lines like “I can do this all by myself!” clearly shows what an immature bitch she was in the war. Her death was one of the most relieving moments I’ve ever had watching an anime, next to Frey’s death in Gundam Seed.

    I just watched 4 episodes of this straight…I must say I’m not sorry that I did. ^_^

  • November 18, 2006 at 4:09 amAebliss

    Isabella’s death will probably only cause more trouble. Martyr complex, anyone? I can imagine some of her ‘posse’ claiming later that Isabella could probably have been saved if Sara had swung into action sooner, accusations of letting good people die, bla bla bla. *sigh* It was a very nice scene when RAM-DASS activated, though. I liked that.

  • November 18, 2006 at 4:48 amAki

    i would say to hell with isabella…shes a bitch…for those who watched this ep already at the part where the gambees were getting ready to launch…she was banging ppl out of the way just so she could be the first out..and my my look where have it got her…..and sara is too kind she could have left isabella to rot in ep 2…and look wat has her kindness got her….NOTHING absolutely NOTHING and not to mention being even more scorned by isabella’s groupies….

  • November 18, 2006 at 5:04 amLissa

    I wonder what will happen next. What a way to end.

  • November 18, 2006 at 6:38 amobethx

    obethx predicts that by the end of the series, no one will go happy watching this.
    The story will be proven weak of plot–that or the ending will be weak. The only bright spot, is the the mecha action.

    obethx could be wrong, with what looks like a 13 ep series.

    Will obethx watch this? Yes.
    Will obethx recommend this? No.
    will obethx reply about this comment? No.

    Then again, obethx could be wrong…

  • November 18, 2006 at 8:24 amdxanato

    Isebella die cause like Sara said she pick the easy target to put her focus. She never bother to notice the target that was on top her. I do agree that cliff hangar on this episode was a killer. It did make want to see episode 4 like that very second.

    To answer Gils question there are total 4 episode that air so far. The 5th will air on Wednesday.

  • November 18, 2006 at 8:57 amsadakups

    It’s very Gundam-ish… mother ship gets attacked by enemy forces, with the enemy ace pilot pwning everyone.

    Sara’s red Strain shown in the OP finally makes it debut, though I wished Isabella was still alive so that Sara can kick her ass personally. ^_^

    I can’t wait to see how she kicks Tumor ass (and maybe Ralph’s ass) in Episode 4.

    Notice that Lotte was so eager to beat Ralph, like Ralph did something bad to her in the past or something. ^_^

  • November 18, 2006 at 9:56 amdxanato

    A reason why Lotti and Sara will be friend. Show Spoiler ▼

  • November 18, 2006 at 12:58 pmDrakron

    Honestly the “Onii-chan” is getting on my nerves, I am starting to guess that Ralph joined the military to get away from Sara sexual harrasement and thanks to Sara constant sexual harrasement he became a lolicon (explaining why he gone after that loli in stasis and turned evil because of feelings of guilt over the whole incest situation.

  • November 18, 2006 at 3:13 pmtensai_otaku

    you are blogging NOW this anime?????????????
    I really like this one!!!It reminds me of seikai no senki( RAFIEL ) :D
    I do love the mahoromatic MAHORO´s seiyuu!!!I´ve seen a lot of special videos with her….but I don´t know why on the videos she seems not to like her SHIGOTO(work)….I don´t know if it was just my impression………..” WHO KNOWS I DON´T EVEN KNOW IT MYSELF ” :D

  • November 18, 2006 at 4:26 pmV-Dragon

    I’m upset for Isabella’s loss, it’s Sara I’m not keen on, acting so aloof. When you step on people’s toes they’ll get back at you. She’s not the only one who’s lost something during this!

  • November 18, 2006 at 7:03 pmZzz…

    …the way Isabella went out…can’t stop laughing…

    …but seriously I did like that girl…despite her personality problem she is somewhat justified in her ill treatment of Sara due that bitch’s total stick all the way up ass holier than thou attitude…I’d be more direct about it with a fist in the throat but…hey…

    …I mean come on Sara…you’re not the shining knight in a Strain anymore…you are a GRUNT…a grunt gets to do all the shitty grunt jobs…that means flying in formation…trying to stay alive long enough to outlast the attack…and covering each other’s back…the very reason all the Strains got their asses whooped in episode 1 is that everyone’s always going out on their own trying to out showman each other…when they needed to coordinate they couldn’t do it right…

    …almost all anime shows involving war always glorifies the hero lone-wolfing it out there and somehow ends up owning everything…I wish a few more shows like oh seikai no senki where that just doesn’t work…but now Sara’s got her stupid red mecha and her deus ex machina doll and can go own the universe…I really do wish Isabella went ahead and crushed Sara’s throat…weep…

  • November 19, 2006 at 1:50 amT_I

    I understand you sentiments. Sara and Lottie can be very selfish when it regards to their personal vendetta and could easily jeopardize teamwork.

    But your aprreciation of Isabella is severely flawed. She is not a good role model. AT ALL.

    –Slacking off and taking it easy
    –Dangerous physical aggression during an exam which could lead to life casualties
    –Slandering Sara and blaming her for attempted murder

    not a glory hound you say? she was the first one to rush ahead over her fellow cadets in order to prove herself sprouting words such as “don’t get in my way”

    Sometimes a bitch is really just a bitch.

  • November 19, 2006 at 3:31 amZeroblade

    The way I saw Isabella, as presented in the show, was that she was a completely one-sided character. She was there for the audience to hate her (or maybe like her, up to you >_>), and when she dies, she dies.

  • November 19, 2006 at 5:01 amJoshieJosh

    Dammit, why did Isabel have to die? I’d rather have her live, then watch in shame as Sara progresses from stupid Gambee to Strain. THEN, they can have her die in the last few episodes after she becomes useless. Having her died so soon was just… tasteless..

    C’mon, bring her back… maybe she ejected from the cockpit and got stuck on the ass-side of the ship, whatever, as long as she’s brought back for a while, get that “In your face” from sara, THEN gth.

    oops… dammit, sounding too much like a madman myself… laterz…

  • November 19, 2006 at 7:19 amJoshieJosh

    Ooh, now that I’ve watched eps 4, I know who I want dead next…
    Show Spoiler ▼

    Sorry, the show just got me too emotional, and I’m ending up getting more attached to the characters than I’d hope. Thanks for blogging!!

  • November 19, 2006 at 6:03 pmZzz…

    …T_|…I never said I find Isabella to be a rolemodel or that’s she is a model grunt…far from it…I just like her personality far better than Sara’s…and I like Lottie’s better too…

    …and the way I see it the reason Isa was so out of character when she died was because she wants to get some credit and metaphorical weight that she can shove up Sara’s asshole…

  • November 19, 2006 at 6:49 pmfai-san

    @Zzz

    Just want to remember that Isabella havent lost ANYTHING in Glabella incident…remember the second ep…he was even more selfless than anyone else, and also if Sara doesnt want to teamwork with her etc, why not leave alone? And more, even when sara saved Isabella, Isabella still was a bitch till the end… i mean come on…u owe ur life to her. why not show atleast some respect…

    “steping on other’s toes?”did sara jeopardized anyones training or passing? did she did anything to ruin anyones life… no, instead everyone tries to ruin her life, and as we see in preview at the end of ep4 Show Spoiler ▼

  • November 19, 2006 at 6:52 pmfai-san

    and just forgot to add… about formation and covering others ass…. thats exactly why Isabella died… she thought only about herself…she never thought that tumors will atack in groups… she just hapily jumped out after seeing one…And Show Spoiler ▼

  • November 19, 2006 at 8:24 pmZzz…

    …sigh…

    …I like Isabella…

    …I hate Sara…

    …everything Sara does will be jaundiced in my opinion…

    …and in comparison Isabella will smell like a spring morning…

    …that is my point…nothing else…

    …deal…

  • November 21, 2006 at 6:34 pmkablaq

    hey omni, for some odd reason, teh pictures from teh last part of the episode are bringing up 404 errors on your site… don’t know why either…

  • November 22, 2006 at 3:04 amEleutheria

    Damn, I cheered so hard when Sara’s red mech started up.

  • November 27, 2006 at 2:13 amPakxenon

    Zzz… wrote:
    …the way Isabella went out…can’t stop laughing…

    …but seriously I did like that girl…despite her personality problem she is somewhat justified in her ill treatment of Sara due that bitch’s total stick all the way up ass holier than thou attitude…I’d be more direct about it with a fist in the throat but…hey…

    …I mean come on Sara…you’re not the shining knight in a Strain anymore…you are a GRUNT…a grunt gets to do all the shitty grunt jobs…that means flying in formation…trying to stay alive long enough to outlast the attack…and covering each other’s back…the very reason all the Strains got their asses whooped in episode 1 is that everyone’s always going out on their own trying to out showman each other…when they needed to coordinate they couldn’t do it right…

    …almost all anime shows involving war always glorifies the hero lone-wolfing it out there and somehow ends up owning everything…I wish a few more shows like oh seikai no senki where that just doesn’t work…but now Sara’s got her stupid red mecha and her deus ex machina doll and can go own the universe…I really do wish Isabella went ahead and crushed Sara’s throat…weep…
    —————————-
    I agree with almost everything here. Isabella’s death was tasteless (could have done with a little more of her), Sara suddenly got a new Strain (takes away the feeling that she got from a Gambee to a Strain if only through hard work instead of this lame miracle), and I love Crest of the Stars (err… haven’t started on Banner yet XD).

    The usage of cliches really bothered me, as I had pretty good expectations for this series. Let’s see where it goes…

  • November 29, 2007 at 11:02 pmHudson

    Ding-Dong the BITCH is dead!

    bye bye Isabella and good ridance! Like they say the gung-ho soldier always dies 1st. Sheesh Sara warned her not to get focused on the easier enamies otherwise she’d be gang-raped by tremors. And what happend? SHE GOT GANG-RAPED BY TREMORS!

    Rasmiel
    You know I actually cried when Frey died. She had learned her lesson and was desperately tring to get back with Kira to apologize to him for all that she did. She had turned away from her bitchy ways. Isabella didn’t. Isabella deserved to die. Frey didn’t. And in my opinion that’s was made Gudam Seed fail.

  • January 31, 2010 at 7:25 pmhaseo_yashimora

    man, there’s no good images of the Libartad eneywere!?