Suisei no Gargantia – 06
This ship, friends, sails itself.
Though some of the more troubling aspects of last week’s episode (at least troubling for me) seem to have migrated over a bit into this week, overall this episode marks a return to the more tightly woven narrative that Suisei set out to tell in its first four episodes. As expected, Ledo’s job hunt is no where near solved by this point, but it seems that other than the want to be useful, he’s still having issues understanding the particulars of what it means to work and live amongst the Gargantians. For one thing, he has no idea what to do with the concept of money (can you imagine eating seaweed bread every day; by CHOICE??) or with the concept of enjoyment for the sake of enjoyment. He doesn’t see any need in buying things for himself, or in seeking out delicious food, and clearly we see that he’s never really off the alert despite his somewhat more relaxed exterior.
All of that is natural for someone as conditioned as Ledo is, but you do have to wonder how much of this is PTSD showing up and how much is sound concern. Clearly the arrival of the Hideauze by the end of the episode shows that his fears are not unfounded, but his reaction to the food (octopus or not) nevertheless goes to show that not all is right with his perception of the world. He’s still very much a battle-worn soldier despite the influence of Amy and the others, and though his heart is warming up, his instinct to shoot first and talk later is hardly out of the way yet.
Despite all that, however, Ledo is finding himself slowly brought into the Gargantian way of life. Though the job hunt is not without its stumbling blocks, he does eventually find employment as a fisherman and accepts Bellows offer to work on her salvage crew. His emotions, too, are starting to bleed through his conditioning. He shows renewed interest in playing his flute, for one thing, and for another, Amy seems to be capturing his attention more than usual. I’m not particularly fond of the way she and the other girls have been depicted these last two episodes, and Amy felt especially flat to me this week, but though the first dancing scene is overdone in the use of fanservice and objectification of the girls, the second is not. There’s definitely an element of the sensual here, but in this case it’s much more elegant and tasteful than her earlier performance, and it goes a long way to show how much Ledo’s been changing. That he could find beauty in a dance and be captivated by a girl at all is a huge stride forward, and though things are about to get more complicated by the Hideauze, that’s definitely a sign of change.