Shirogane no Ishi Argevollen – 22
Just when I thought Argevollen was out of twists and turns, it manages to squeeze another significant one in the final three episodes—all of the prototypes supplied to both Arandas and Ingelmia were planted with a hidden mechanism that allows Perfevollen to take control of them. In all likelihood, this mechanism is just another means for the manufacturers to extend the war, seeing as Arandas was losing the war and ready to end it with a peace treaty. However, in one fell-swoop, the tides of war have suddenly shifted back in their favor with Samonji marching with an army of Perfevollen drones, Sturm Betas, and Argevollen itself under his command. One reason why this came as a surprise is because the first half of the episode had just introduced another minor twist with Independent Unit 8 being ordered to destroy Perfevollen and I figured that alone was an interesting angle to conclude the series around. After they followed that up with Izumi suggesting that he purposely placed Argevollen on the battlefield so that Samonji could seize control of it, I have to admit that the sight of Unit 8 rallying around Suzushiro to go after Samonji again did have a more finale-worthy feel to it though.
So where does that leave us now? Well it looks like even with these additional twists, the writers have more or less locked in to concluding the story around Unit 8 stopping/saving Samonji. The only question remaining is what’s motivating Samonji to continue the fight on behalf of Cayenne. The most prevalent thought would be that he’s trying to live out Reika’s idealistic dream of fighting a war where no one dies as a sort of atonement and/or tribute to her. The fact that he let all of Ingelmia’s pilots get out of their Sturm Betas here and told an extremely heated Tokimune to live on suggests as much anyway. At this point, I can’t really imagine Samonji having any other motive than that, so the other noteworthy development this episode definitely came from Tokimune. I was quite impressed to see him break a lot of the typical hot-blooded anime protagonist stereotypes and demand an explanation from Samonji but still have the right frame of mind to obey Suzushiro’s orders of getting out of Argevollen. It was just about everything that I would hope to see from a main character who’s grown over the course of the series so that came as a pleasant surprise. That goes equally for how Tokimune handles his “relationship” with Jamie. My only hope now is that he maintains that mature, obedient, and dependable persona and brings Samonji to his senses.