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So-Ra-No-Wo-To – 08 »« So-Ra-No-Wo-To – 06

So-Ra-No-Wo-To – 07

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Summary:

It’s time for the Bon Festival, but Filicia hasn’t been acting like herself. While making lanterns with the other girls, she accidentally cuts herself, and the sight of blood causes her to flashback to what happened in her past. Everyone is concerned, but Rio thinks that they should leave her alone, and Noel sees her reminiscing by their tank. The truth is that Filicia had been fighting on the front lines at one point, and she had been the only survivor when her unit’s tank got destroyed. Stumbling on the battlefield, she hadn’t been killed by incoming gunfire only because she had fallen down a hole into an underground area. There, she found the remains of a soldier from a war past who had written a message that she couldn’t read. While she had been grieving over her dead comrades, the soldier had appeared to come alive and had apologized for losing to a certain side and for not being able to protect them. He felt that the world had ended and that people like Filicia were all that remained of humanity, and he questioned if there was any meaning in surviving in a world like this. Just as Filicia was despairing though, she had heard Amazing Grace and had been found and rescued by Princess Iliya.

Back in the present, Filicia appears to return to normal and tells Rio that she had only been concerned about her weight. The girls then make their way to the river to place their lanterns in the water, and Filicia has written on hers the names of the people in her old unit as well as the unknown soldier. Hearing Filicia talk about this, Kanata breaks down in tears because she wants to be able to worry about her too. This is because she loves Filicia, and Filicia returns those feelings, holds her, and tells her to stay as she is. Kureha and Noel were concerned too and join in the hug, and the girls then place their lanterns in the water and pray. Afterward, while talking with Rio, Filicia goes back to something Rio had mentioned earlier and explains how she realized that there was no meaning in the world. This is not a bad thing though because it means you can find your own meaning, and Filicia feels that hers is to make sure that Kanata and the others don’t experience the same feelings she had to.

Preview

So Ra No Wo To   07   Preview 01 So Ra No Wo To   07   Preview 02 So Ra No Wo To   07   Preview 03

Well this was certainly a welcome change of pace. I initially thought they were going to fake us out again like they did two episodes ago and give us another tame episode, but there was actually a lot of heavy stuff here about Filicia’s past and what motivates her now. I liked how the episode ended, and it made me wonder if there’ll be another conflict soon and if Filicia will try to prevent the girls from having to fight. Of course I loved seeing all the action and combat parts too, which got pretty intense at times, though I should mention that it still feels weird for them to be using horns for communication alongside spider tanks. Anyway, it would appear that Filicia fought in some battle a few years ago, but prior to that there was a major conflict between either different countries or between humanity and and some other, perhaps alien, force. That could fit with the legend, so the idea of Kanata and company fighting a monster with Takemikazuchi isn’t so far off anymore.

Aside from all that, this episode also connected Filicia and Noel’s past, connected Filicia to the trumpet woman we’ve seen with Kanata and Rio, identified that woman as the princess Iliya, and towards the end it seemed to suggest that Rio is her little sister and that she’s dead now. I wouldn’t be surprised if both Noel and Kureha have met Iliya as well, making her the key figure. So a lot got packed into this one episode, but they did so without overwhelming the audience, and I’d say this was probably the best episode of the series so far. I’m curious to see if they go back to the light-hearted stuff now or if the rest of the series is as serious as this.

February 16, 2010 at 5:03 am
44 comments »
  • February 16, 2010 at 5:09 amPLH

    Indeed a crazy and enjoyable episode, and I’m officially ignoring the misleading previews from now on. Christ, last weeks preview for this episode made it seem like a bubble-bath episode. >_>

  • February 16, 2010 at 5:27 amAuroraFlame

    So they were saving Felicia’s centric episode because it had a lot of the old war in it. With all of the introductory stuff out of the way, they have the remaining half of the series to get down to darker material. I wouldn’t be surprised if the next episode starts off as a normal episode but ends with the real plot starting.

    I’m still wondering about the skeleton from the first episode, but those spider tanks were moving pretty smoothly along the skyscrapers. Did artificial intelligence have anything to do with the war?

  • February 16, 2010 at 5:33 amAlec

    Im lovin this anime. It just keeps on breaking barriers. And oh I love the theme of this episode!

    screw! stereotypes, that no longer matters to me in this anime anymore. As long as this anime will keep on showing us its “AWSOMENESS”, then everythings AOK

  • February 16, 2010 at 5:36 amdeathdakid

    I guess this the last time we will be comparing this anime with k-on…

  • February 16, 2010 at 5:45 amDalandross

    Great episode! and it really served as an eye-opener into the past, if my eyes weren’t mistaking what they were fighting in the past looked as if it had wings, maybe it was something like a Griffin or some other mythological creature i wonder…well anyway, here’s hoping for more great epsiodes int teh future

  • February 16, 2010 at 6:36 amRei

    Whoa this looks really serious. wowowwow can’t wait for subs

  • February 16, 2010 at 6:45 amariafag

    and thus begins the deconstruction of moe

  • February 16, 2010 at 6:49 amkaineng

    haha nice episode anyways for more filicia, especially the short-haired gal, next would be better, or am I seeing some resemblance to moe-ness again? I’ll just have to see…

  • February 16, 2010 at 7:04 amfreetersensei

    Just loved this episode :)Shame people keep tagging it military K-ON!
    Ok, revelation that Rio might be royalty, as witnessed by the monk being shocked by seeing her?
    Onto next week :)

  • February 16, 2010 at 7:44 amKiseki

    Anyone else catch the reflection on the skyscraper? You can see the wing of a bird.

  • February 16, 2010 at 8:18 amIsland Esper

    I wonder if the “opposing” force was able to break into the communication system and that’s way they use the horn system. As for the princess she seems the be center of all the girls past, wonder when they’ll realize it or this will impact them. Filicia memories or post traumatic syndrome reminded me of some veterans friends I have. The horrors of war are many. They are feeding them to us honey coated like last episode. I have a feeling we will witness some bloodshed before this season is over. If Rio is royalty she is a given target but don’t kill Noel Arghhhh !!!!!

  • February 16, 2010 at 8:19 amEspada

    one by one they all gonna die…

  • February 16, 2010 at 8:43 amSplash

    This episode is why I watch anime. Superb in every way.

    I too thought that the enemy had hacked their communication system and so they used horns to play the commands. It also could just be tradition (similar to why bagpipes are played at police officer funerals in big cities). It looks like the enemy are machines the way they move so fast climbing the sides of buildings and such (shades of the Matrix Trilogy or Terminator series came to mind). For some reason I don’t think Felicia will live to see the end of this series.

  • February 16, 2010 at 8:53 amfragbet

    Filicia seems pretty well adjusted for having her own team killed. Getting close to her team will make it worse for her if something bad happens.

    I was waiting for the other shoe to drop and now it finally did. Got to love mood whiplashes. Hopefully there will be more serious episodes.

  • February 16, 2010 at 9:16 amZeross

    Everyone suppose that the “ennemie” have hacked their communication system but there is another explanation :

    - there were once a great era of technologie
    - country started war with great weapons and wiped themself
    - survivor just go few relics from the past but don’t understand them
    - they know roughtly how to control a tank but haven’t been able to use the communication system
    - survivor have keep fighting with those relics even if they have forgoten how the original war (in the technologie era) have started

    pretty cool episode btw. wouldn’t mind if it keep with this mood =)

  • February 16, 2010 at 9:40 amZeru

    From the looks of it, the war Felecia was in happened after the “apocalyptic” war, so there is a regression of technology, so they know how to pilot the tanks, but not to the extent they can run around on buildings and move at the speed they used to.
    This also explains the whole “communicating with the horn” business. The dead soldier’s flashback was probably during the apocalyptic war, where the spider tanks were humanity’s primary weapon against whatever they were at war with, which I think may have been aliens considering the technology difference.

  • February 16, 2010 at 10:28 amSmith

    They were fighting the almighty Uranus Queen.

  • February 16, 2010 at 10:54 amaubrey

    One thing that made me think was what the princess said to Felicia. Something along the lines of “if my squad had been here earlier, this wouldn’t have happened.”

    One squad generally can’t change a battle that much. Unless she is special somehow.

  • February 16, 2010 at 11:15 amAlhazred

    @aubrey: I would wager that Princess Iria’s unit had one or more tanks like Takemikadzuchi. It was stated early on that there are only a small number of them still operational, but Takemikadzuchi wasn’t the only one (and it’s not exactly ‘operational’ either). Even one of the old-style tanks would probably be more than capable of turning the tide of a battle.

  • February 16, 2010 at 12:27 pmoctoberasian

    @Zeru
    Show Spoiler ▼

  • February 16, 2010 at 1:16 pmbK24MEGAN

    I opine that there is not a good idea to create the argumentative essay by your own efforts! I think, that will be better to purchase the term paper format at the custom sociology essays service, because it can save time.

  • February 16, 2010 at 4:17 pmewok

    Well, that made me wonder if I should pick up this series… This can be the dark horse of this season!
    Guns! Mecha! Action!
    going into the download mode…

  • February 16, 2010 at 4:50 pmKaioshin Sama

    Getting Gundam X vibes from some of the screen shots on this one. Definitely no longer looking like a military K-On. Something unexpected actually happened (finally) so there’s a chance I might pick this up again and see where it leads.

  • February 16, 2010 at 5:41 pmlonghaul

    The spider tanks seemed to be shooting at a tower in the distance, and the death ray appeared to eminate from said tower, the wing in the reflection might be a distraction?

  • February 16, 2010 at 6:02 pmGiriath

    @longhaul

    Actually I think the spider tanks are shooting at the creatures that are near the tower. If you look to the left in the reflection it looks like one of them flies off, or it may just be that really big one stretching its wings. There are many more towers similar to the one the creature is near, in the blast zone of its death ray, so I doubt they’re special, if not targets for the creature.

    It would make more sense for the soldier to speak of who or what they failed to protect humankind from when we get a glimpse of the creature, rather than some death ray building. The winged skeleton in episode 1 makes this theory more plausible.

  • February 16, 2010 at 7:26 pmBROOKLYN otaku

    FUCK YEAH!!!! I’m back in!!!! apocalyptic MGS type action! AHAHAHAHAH!!! deconstruct certain moe is the mantra.

  • February 17, 2010 at 12:19 amHorus

    The first several minutes of this episode blew me away because of the sudden shift to more darker themes. This series definitely is not the moe blob that many people initially thought it would be. I think that without Kanata being so bubbly, this anime would be more shaded dark.

    I was really taken aback by how Filicia was the one with such a tragic past, not saying that the rest of the girls’ pasts are tragic in their own right but Filicia seems to be the one with the most to take in up until now.

    Anyone notice the dead soldier has the Japanese flag on his helmet? It looked like it to me. I’m also eagerly waiting for someone to sing Amazing Grace ^^ Maybe find the lyrics or something….sing it in English. Good stuff.

    Anyways, loving every second of this anime. I actually hope they have a second season if they can’t wrap it up in the first. As of right now this anime is definitely in my Top 5. I hope they don’t mess it up nearing the end ^^;

  • February 17, 2010 at 12:53 amOrion

    The practice scenario in Episode 5 was directly modeled on the RL battle Filicia was in, right down to the “communication officer” leaning out of the tank to signal the support troops on a bugle. Did anyone notice Filicia was the loader in her tank, just as Kanata was? She has PTSD, btw, but doesn’t want her new crew to worry about her.

    The “zero generation” spider tanks were far superior to those used by the current combatants. The previous era’s technology is almost like magic to them. I’m not sure what the “zero generation” tanks were shooting at. It appears Filicia’s tank was fighting human opponents using similar tech.

    It’s fairly obvious that Rio is a member of a royal family. A very high ranking royal family: Her sister was not just PRINCESS Iris, but I’m told that the sub translated from IMPERIAL Princess Iris. Her back story, when it comes out, will be very interesting.

    Kanata appears the only character with an intact family/background. Filicia lost her comrades, Rio lost her mother and sister, Kaheda is an orphan and I’m not sure about Noel but she probably is, too.

    If the seas are dead-dead they have real problems. The poison, whatever it is, would not stop at the shore line and if even the microscopic life is gone that means a good chunk of the world’s oxygen regeneration capability is gone, too.

  • February 17, 2010 at 2:22 amBlaque

    I was wondering for a while if they’d be doing this. With the same director as Elfen Lied on this show and the implications of the post-apocalyptic setting throughout the show and some other things about, I was wondering when the “whammy” episode would hit. Guess it was this one:)

    Probably the best one. Really intense. The scene with Filicia in the ruins with the corpse was pretty frekay. And it still leaves a lot of things unanswered and I hope able to be figured out later on. Nonetheless, great stuff, look forward to more:)

    And stuff.

  • February 17, 2010 at 4:34 aminnerchihiro

    This was brilliant. And I officially CANNOT wait for the OST. All that acoustic was so beautiful.

    Really really good episode. Even the potentially-corny scenes like the group hug were amazing, surprising even me. There’s still so much to learn about the characters, I have to keep watching. I’m officially hooked on this series now.

  • February 17, 2010 at 6:28 amriddle

    dude, this anime has stereotypes, yeah they do, but this anime makes use of their stereotypes to the fullest, the characters are stereotypes plus more, so it makes them enjoyable to watch. yes, their stereotypes, but what’s an anime without stereotypes.

  • February 17, 2010 at 9:44 amMad_Dog

    Wow. When did Sora no Woto become more than just a slice if ife anime!? excellent episode.

  • February 17, 2010 at 10:13 amLikewise

    It was a good episode, yes. But it’s not what I want from Sora no Oto.

  • February 17, 2010 at 3:58 pmKyuusei

    The dead soldier seems to be wearing a WWII era uniform and his rifle appears to be a German StG44 which is also a late WWII era weapon. The car the girls use is also a German WWII era vehicle.

    The battle Felicia was in shows that their usage of technology to be around WWI/WWII, having no radio communications, modern sensors and the like with the exception of the spider tank.

    Still need more information to work out a timeline but as far as I can make out:

    WWII or slightly post WWII -> End of the World -> Post End of World skirmishes (Felicia’s battle) -> Current day Sora no Woto

    The modern spider tanks such as Takemikazuchi would appear to me to be the aggressors that the Human soldier was defending against, since in current times they have no clue as to how it’s technology works.

  • February 17, 2010 at 5:10 pmtwilightlegacy

    Here’s my take on it based on what I’ve heard
    Show Spoiler ▼

    it seems like this anime is getting quite a bit more interesting. THIS is the stuff that was being subtly hinted at throughout the past 6 episodes.

  • February 17, 2010 at 7:17 pminnerchihiro

    I really wonder about the languages and cultures too. I find it funny how Kanata seems to sign her name in Japanese, but can’t read it in those school books. And yet, though her whole cultural background seems to be Japanese, she wrote some sort of romance language (French again?) on her light for Obon. Her letter from home seemed to read horizontally as well.
    Rio similarly signs her name in Kanji and seems to be Japanese, but if she’s really related to Iria, does that mean she’s European as well? Her name could also be Spanish. She also writes in a roman letter language on her light.
    Kureha seems to write only with roman letters, but her name is completely Japanese. She also seems to have a very western opinion of spirits, she even mentioned the church in this episode.
    Filicia writes in French, but as her last name and hair and eye color indicate, she seems to be German.
    I think Noel has only written something once in the series so far, but spells her name in the French way. But despite the first name, her last name is Japanese.
    God, who knows who they are? I find it fun to try an guess though. ^^

  • February 17, 2010 at 7:25 pmwhatever 2

  • February 17, 2010 at 7:33 pmwhatever 2

    @innerchihiro

    /a/-runned wiki episode 6 chart

    explanations for the kanji is on the right side.

  • February 17, 2010 at 8:46 pmKyuusei

    Those episode charts are quite useful in deciphering this anime…I for one wouldn’t of even thought about comparing the spider tanks to Tigers and Shermans.

  • February 17, 2010 at 9:58 pmwhatever 2

    there are more on the wikia. the wikia is an absolute mess though since it’s run by /a/. The charts though are pretty good.

    /a/ run wikia episode charts

    so far we officially had ~25-30k posts dedicated to sora no woto on /a/.

  • February 18, 2010 at 8:29 amskyhack

    I think….
    Felicia will be the martyr, Kanata will supply the last minute rally, and Rio will become Queen (or something similar) in place of Iria, her “Nee-sama”. (They look too much alike to not be sisters)

    Even if it turns out that way, this series still rocks.

  • February 18, 2010 at 7:34 pmsealouse

    I like serious…

  • February 18, 2010 at 9:48 pmSilentbrick

    So far as the tanks go, the tanks shown during the scenes from the civilization ending war are like the tank the girls have now, advanced, high tech. The tanks they showed when Felicia was fighting were not the same tanks. Obviously they were based off the others, but I did not see the same type of interior or exterior on them. You can see in the screen captures that Felicia’s tank was using rounded armor and looked rather WWII style. The tank the girls have now has the same sloped armor style you saw in the first war scenes. It’s obviously a relic that hasn’t been used in quite some time and is probably only close to operational because the white haired girl (I forgot her name, sorry) is working on it so much.

    Now, as for communications, I don’t believe it was due to hacking of the commo system, it’s the simple fact that the current military doesn’t seem to have the technology for radio/maser/laser communications. No radios have been shown in the series at all, and all their orders come not even from telegraph but motorcycle courier.

    Now the dead soldier’s rifle isn’t a Sturmgewehr, but appears to be a Howa Type 89, which is the current issue rifle for the JSDF.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Howa_Type_89

    Prediction
    Show Spoiler ▼

  • February 27, 2010 at 1:31 amxeron

    After looking at the /a/ charts, I can never look at Sora no Woto they way I used to… Sure, a lot of it is speculation, but, damn, is it deep!