Gundam 00 Second Season – 17
Fourteen years ago, during a losing battle, Sergei had issued the order to retreat to their final defense line so that they could protect all the people building the orbital elevator. Doing so, however, meant abandoning Holly on the battlefield. Andrei now recounts how his mother’s body was never found, and ever since then, he hasn’t spoken with his father normally. He believes that in maintaining military discipline, his father had killed his mother. Back near the Africa Tower, the Ptolemaios crew has realized that A-LAWS has another satellite weapon. Kati has figured out the same thing and can’t believe that they’re going to be attacking the low orbit station, but Billy suspects that in order to achieve a permanent peace, Homer is willing to shoulder all the sins. Ribbons and Regene meanwhile discuss how mankind hasn’t learned anything from the past and how that’s why Aeolia Schenberg created the Innovators. Ribbons, however, reminds Regene that he created him, so he should be treated as the Maker, and it will be he who leads mankind, not the Innovators.
By now, Tieria, Lyle, and Allelujah have launched in their Gundams and are headed towards the Africa Tower. When he sees the Katharon forces getting decimated by the Federation forces, Lyle rushes ahead and engages the enemy. Sumeragi wants to try to fly the Ptolemaios back into space to attack the Memento Mori again, but the ship isn’t in any condition to do so. Fortunately, Setsuna decides to head out in the 00 Raiser because at this point, that’s the only thing that can stop the Memento Mori. Since the 0 Raiser needs a pilot, Setsuna instructs Saji to do it, and he reminds Saji that there are 60,000 lives at stake. The idea of protecting those people motivates Saji, and he soon launches in the 0 Raiser and docks it with the 00 Gundam. While this is going on, onboard the low orbit station, Hercule wants to stay behind and urges Sergei to escape, but Sergei convinces Hercule to escape as well by reminding him that they have to protect the people.
With the Memento Mori about ready to fire at this point, Arthur orders the Empruss out to intercept the incoming 00 Raiser. Devine has the Empruss grab onto and electrify the 00 Raiser, but Setsuna is able to activate its Trans-Am, and he fires a massive particle beam that annihilates the Empruss. This beam doesn’t stop with the Empruss though, and Setsuna is able to use it like an extremely long beam saber to hit the Memento Mori. This does a considerable amount of damage to the satellite weapon, but it’s not quite enough, and the Memento Mori is still able to fire off a shot at the low orbit station before it itself explodes. One of the explosions causes the firing angle to be different though, so the Memento Mori beam ends up hitting part of the orbital elevator structure below the low orbit station. The result is that the outside wall of the orbital elevator starts falling apart, and its various pieces plunge down towards Earth. This also means that all of the people still on the trains heading down die as their trains fall off their tracks and collide.
Given the dire situation, Sumeragi broadcasts a message to all the forces around the Africa Tower asking them to destroy the fragments of the falling pillar in order to protect all the people on the ground. The Gundam Meisters are the first to spring into action destroying the falling fragments, and they get some help in the form of Marie piloting the GN Archer. They are then joined by Katharon, the coup forces, the regular Federation military, and even by some of Kati’s A-LAWS units, including Andrei and Louise. During all this, Sergei and Hercule emerge from the shaft and start helping out as well, and Marie recognizes Sergei’s mobile suit. When Andrei realizes that Hercule is here and was behind the coup, he turns his weapon towards his father’s friend, but before he can do anything, he’s alerted to a massive pillar fragment that’s falling towards them. Normal weapons fire doesn’t have any effect on such a big piece, so Tieria activates Trans-Am on the Seravee Gundam and fires its GN Bazooka in hyper burst mode. This splits the fragment into two, and the 00 Raiser swoops in to finish the job.
The battle against the falling fragments continues until evening time, and the population under the orbital elevator is mostly saved. After surveying the destruction, Sergei finds Hercule in disbelief over what happened, but this is short-lived because Hercule’s mobile suit is suddenly destroyed by Andrei. Andrei blames them for causing all this, and when he realizes that the other mobile suit is piloted by his father, he’s fueled by his belief that his father killed his mother and that his father had participated in the coup. Marie tries to help Sergei, and although she’s briefly pushed back by Louise’s Ahead, Louise then gets occupied with Saji and the 00 Raiser. Unfortunately, Marie isn’t able to reach Sergei in time, and Andrei’s GN-XIII proceeds to stab Sergei’s Tieren. In his final moments, Sergei remembers how Holly had asked him to take care of Andrei if something happened to her during their next military operation. During her funeral, however, it was Hercule who had comforted Andrei, and Sergei hadn’t said anything to his son afterward. Covered in blood now, Sergei tries to apologize to his son and confesses that he didn’t know how to deal with Andrei who had closed off his heart. He then pushes his son’s mobile suit away from his own, and in his mind, he apologizes to Holly. Sergei’s Tieren then explodes, and Marie is only able to watch in horror.
Bah. Everything was working out so well with everyone, even Kati’s A-LAWS forces, banding together to destroy the falling pieces of the orbital elevator. In a series like this where they emphasize how much humanity tends to fight itself, it was good to see a moment of actual unity. But then stupid Andrei had to ruin it all by killing Hercule and then Sergei (at which point I was yelling “Noooo” at my screen). Story-wise, it made sense that if Sergei were going to die, it was going to be by A-LAWS or Andrei – being killed by his own son was definitely the more tragic route – but I still didn’t want it to happen. I really hope Marie kicks Andrei’s ass now, and it looks like in the preview that she’s pissed off and wants revenge.
Speaking of Marie, she finally debuted the GN Archer and showed off it’s mobile suit form. It looks quite feminine and resembles a U.C. GM like with its single visor and coloring scheme. All it needs to do now is to combine with the Arios (I think this is the point where I wonder if there’d be any sexual connotations). This week also had the fall of another Innovator, Devine, who died in a rather unceremonious fashion – so much for his revenge. Four more of them to go (not including Anew or Tieria). I found it interesting that Ribbons flaunts his superiority over Regene – maybe that’ll be his downfall. The story will be jumping ahead four months before that can happen though, and I would guess that they’re going to start building up towards the finale now. That time period is probably long enough for Louise’s new mobile armor to be completed, and it looks like Anew’s relationship with Lyle might be heating up as well.
As a side note, with all the Obama stuff in anime and manga (I’ve seen at least five different references/appearances now, including in some recent chapters of Air Gear), I’m sure I’m not the only who thought of him when they showed this in the preview.