AKB0048 Next Stage – 09
「青い裏切り」 (Aoi Uragiri)
This week on AKB0048, we get the aftermath of the DES attack — and things aren’t looking good at all, as Yuuko’s disappearance is confirmed and AKB themselves seem on the brink of destruction. Despite this however, our heroines manage to temporarily avoid capture — which ultimately gives much needed time for some necessary character development and for contemplation of what to do next.
And first up on the menu? The confrontation of Minami, whose betrayal is revealed to all, along with an explanation of how she ended up dealing with Zodiac in the first place. Interestingly enough, this then leads to a discussion of two important topics — the revelation that those that become Center Nova either go all the way or lose all their radiance, as well as the confirmation that Dualium and Kirara are important entities that have allowed for interstellar flight. In the end though, the former definitely takes the cake as the more important of the two — both because of how it’s something that I actually never thought about and because it just highlights the ultimate double edged sword becoming Center Nova entails. Talk about living a difficult life! It’s one thing just fighting off armies while balancing insane schedules… but to have the potential apex of your accomplishments resulting in a disappearance you might not want… phew* Tough stuff.
While we’re on the topic though, it’s also interesting to note how Ushiyama actually puts the question out there of whether or not the Center Nova that have disappeared even want to be rescued. Admittedly, it’s something I haven’t contemplated before… but now that it’s out in the open like that, it’s intriguing to think that what Tsubasa and Minami want may ironically end up not being what the missing Center Nova want.
Moving on though, another big thing for me this week was the realization of how terrible the understudies must be feeling right about now. After all that hard effort, time, and dedication spent getting in and trying to become successors… they just so happen to be there at the one moment where AKB’s on the brink of annihilation. Of course, while in a way this scenario could be considered a curse, it’s notably one that’s potentially a blessing as well — considering that they hold the key to potentially ensuring AKB’s future survival, the defeat of DES and the removal entertainment bans across the universe, release the Center Nova in the other world, and really just change what has been the status quo for a while now. All they need is a hero to rise up…
…and under what better circumstances would there be for one — or multiple — of them to rise aside from impending total defeat? As Minami shows this week herself, it’s times where you have nothing to lose — times where you may as way go out fighting — where you’re the most lethal. On that note, it looks like Nagisa (and Chieri) will strive towards — and probably achieve — Center Nova status in order to attempt a rescue of Yuuko and the others. And that’s all fine and dandy… except for the fact that it looks like it’s something Chieri’s father wants as well, now that Yuuko ended up being unable to control her awakening. His intentional reassignment of Nagisa’s father seems primed towards coercing Nagisa into becoming a Center Nova, and it’ll be interesting how things work out from here, especially seeing how the Flying Get seems to have had a fateful arrival at what looks like a key planet of some sort — one that seems like it may well hold some important revelations within it.