Emily and Ralph are walking through a hallway in the Deague warship when she accidentally bumps into a less-than-happy Barrow. After Ralph helps her back up and they continue on their way, Barrow continues to sneer at the Union traitor and espouses the Deague way of fighting. Meanwhile onboard the Libertad, Lottie is once again angry with Sara after a training simulation with their new formation and runs all the way over to Sara’s Strain’s hanger to yell at her for acting on her own. Sara, however, ignores Lottie and returns to her own room with Emily. Dickon and Carris later find Sara drawing and guess she’s working on a space monster or an abstract painting. They are dumbfounded when she tells them that it’s actually Emily’s clothes and then walks away, however the pair soon get a message from Lottie. Sara is back in her room talking to Emily about Lottie and showing the doll the new clothes when she hears Melchisedec talking to someone outside. It seems that Lottie had the idea to bring the entire group down for a party, though she insists that it’s a party for them and not a welcome one for Sara.
During the celebration, Sara sits off to the side with Emily and wishes that the doll could talk. Lavinia interrupts the festivities when she appears in a bunny outfit looking for Sara, having not been informed that there was already a party going on. When she manages to trip after her heels break, everyone has a hearty laugh and raise their glasses for a toast. It is during this time that dormant Tumors are activating inside the broken hull of the ship. Unaware of this, the group continues their fun and Carris approaches Sara again. This time, he comments on how precious Emily is to Sara and sits down beside her. As she watches those two together, Jessie wonders aloud why Sara’s Mimic is a doll. Melchisedec explains to her with death always nearby, Reasoners need a partner whose heart is responsive to theirs – this is the original meaning of existence for Mimics. He then gets the idea to work on Jessie’s Mimic and chases her around.
Everyone’s laughter reminds Sara of Mary, Colin, and Cedie, and she’s further reminded of her past when Dickon turns on the music. As she’s recalling happy times of doing the box step with Cedie, Sara opens her eyes and sees that Carris has extended his hand to invite her to dance. He offers to lead, but she already knows the moves and the two start dancing in front of Emily. However, Carris then asks who taught her, triggering painful memories in Sara. She starts walking away from him in silence, but everything gets interrupted when the ship’s alarms go off because of the Tumors. The Strains are sent out in response, but at first they don’t see the enemy from outside the ship. It’s only when Lavinia investigates a hole in the hull that the Tumors start pouring out and attack her. Sara sees what’s happening and goes to save Lavinia as the other Strains also come under attack. After getting the Tumors’ attention, Sara starts a steep climb that takes her Strain away from the ship and Lavinia. She and Lottie manage to coordinate several maneuvers where they use their high speeds to rush at each other and get all the Tumors to explode together.
After finishing off the rest of the enemy, Sara looks into the void of space behind the ship and thinks to herself that her brother is out there. She then looks over to see all of her friends’ waiting Strains and suggests to Emily that they return to the ship. With the battle over, the party resumes, but now Lavinia can’t thank Sara enough for saving her life. Lottie comes over to Sara’s spot and offers her hand for a handshake. Sara is reluctant to take it, but Lottie grabs it and then pulls her towards the party.


It feels like the pacing of this series has slowed down dramatically. It might also be due to the fact that this seems to be another episode where Sara realizes that she’s got a new group of people around her who she can call friends. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, but I had been hoping for Ralph or Deague to act again after they didn’t last episode. If nothing else though, the Tumors this week demonstrated that Sara and Lottie can indeed work together and can maybe face Ralph without getting themselves killed. That feeling that the pacing has slowed might also be because no one’s died in a while. There was a point in this episode where I thought that maybe Lavinia might, but it seems that not only will she live on a bit longer, she’ll also get a lot of screen time next week. And perhaps the death expectation is unfounded – for all I know, everyone remaining might live and the deaths from the first episode were just to show the toll of war and to emphasize Ralph’s betrayal. We’ll just have to see in the second half of this series.

On that note, there is a scheduling alert: Soukou no Strain will not be airing on December 27th, January 3rd, January 17th, or January 24th. The show will take two weeks of break after Episode 09, return for Episode 10 on January 10th, then take another two weeks break before finally returning again on January 31st for Episode 11.

If that made no sense to you:
December 6th – Episode 07
December 13th – Episode 08
December 20th – Episode 09
December 27th – Not airing
January 3rd – Not airing
January 10th – Episode 10
January 17th – Not airing
January 24th – Not airing
January 31st – Episode 11
February 7th – Episode 12
February 14th – Episode 13
WOWOW’s schedule shows the first two week break being taken by a movie and then a New Year’s drama special, while the second two week break is because of tennis coverage for the Australian Open.


  1. Someone’s gotta say it… what is with mad-scientist boy’s nose!?

    From the looks of it the first screencap is just Lavinia fantasizing. Every anime needs at least one lesbian nowadays, especially if there’s a female protagonist. Look at Honoka and Paife. If Sara does swing that way, I’d root for her and Lotti but they’re probably setting Carris up as her love interest.

  2. I think things will pick up here in the next episode. Looks to me like this is the start of the “romance” and “teamwork” Sara is going to need to make it. I’m expecting a big battle here in an episode or two. I kinda still wonder if Ralph is the big bad guy everyone makes him out to be.

  3. We need this kind of stuff now and then ^_^ eat that BOB!

    Who cares if is a one-sides-love, is funny to see it… plus, Ayako Kawasumi has played those roles in the past ~ coff coff kannaduki no Miko coff coff ~ so… wanna do it?

    Syaoran Li
  4. with what we’ve seen..i get the feeling that the shadow of tomino is somewhere behind the production team .
    for lotsa episode we are going to like and get attached all the different characters a lot a Bam ! they all will start to fall like flies one by one

  5. Funny you mention Tomino.

    The director for Strain cut his mecha anime teeth working on Gundam Victory under Tomino.

    He also direct a little ova call Zone of Enders Idolo. Anyone familiar with it knows what happen to the main character.

    His last directing job was KGNE

  6. $%@&@$%^$%@#*(%^

    I haven’t seen such big breaks since Black Cat of last year. >.>

    On the bright side, it seems that they may after all have something going on between Sara and Carris. 😀

  7. I can see more action happing on episode 8 once the ship has repair and try to head back to their original destination. Next week I am guessing if going to be funny see how Sara try to defend herself from Lavi

  8. …anime and manga tend to go the route of sword whoring…especially katana whoring…it’s in the Japanese psyche…I guess they feel it’s more manly or something…I won’t say the rest…this trend should be of no surprise if you had watched any any more action orientated anime previously…

    …I know it’s stupid…and it’s a big part of why I hate mecha in general…I wish for more pilots like Maya from Fafner (Dead Aggressor wtf?)…sniper rifles are sexy…and she engaged in close combat only once and that’s only because she was in a cave…

  9. Haha, Emily looking away from Sara’s dress design was priceless. XD

    Feels like this anime’s atmosphere got softer though…What happened to the dark storyline it started out with? Not that I like dark storylines, but it’s nice to see changes once in a while…

  10. There is not much shcok value if they keep characters off without introducing them to the viewers first.

    Have Sara make new Friends
    Have Sara’s brother kill new friends.
    Heard Sara scream.

  11. Zzz: Gundam pilots used ranged combat all the time. Have you seen Amurol with a beam rifle? He devstated teams of enemy mobile suits in several different battles with nothing more than a beam rifle. Heck, in the final battle of original Gundam, he never used his beam saber even once!

  12. Strains aren’t close-combat only. They have distance weaponry… we’ve seen it. Mostly in Episode 1, but there have been other times. A salvo of greenish dart-like things, possibly missles or energy bursts of some sort. But they don’t use them much when in that near-lightspeed drive of theirs, because any shots fired in the direction of acceleration get blown right back into the strain that fired them. Episode 3 gave a good example of that.

  13. …my exposure to the Gun-damn universe has been strictly with the crap known as Wing, SEED, and DESTINY…and yes they use long distance weaponry…but at some point they always end up in hand to hand combat…and at key junctions with key figures…mow down all the grunts you want with guns but for a real man to man fight they pull out the blades…and Gun-damn isn’t the end all be all of mecha out there…EVA, Fafner, Aquarion, Zegapain, all the Sakura related crap, KnM (WTF), GunxSword, Geass, etc…you got Mecha…you got swords…and if not swords then some other type of hand to hand weapons, or even “bare” fists…for god’s sake even Gasaraki and Burst Angel had sword/shiv swinging mecha…and it doesn’t have to be mecha either…name every anime character you know that uses guns…then name every one that uses a sword or something like it (and takes on people using guns)…now compare the numbers…a preponderance…I never said there are no intelligent, rational, tactical, gun users out there…I just said that as a whole the trend is that of sword-whoring…

  14. I believe the only appropriate response is “manwhat”
    a) Mecha pilots transition their personal skills to their piloting. Most of the mecha pilots are young kids or shounen heroes who have a martial arts background, not a military background. Look at Sousuke from FMP, f’rex. He uses primarily his guns because that’s what he’s freaking trained in, as opposed to, say, Suzaku in Geass, who has hax martial arts skills outside of his mech already.
    b) It’s not fair to compare # of gun-wielders to # of sword-wielders IF YOU DON’T TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE FACT THAT THERE ARE MORE SWORD (melee) BASED ANIME. That’s just basic statistics.
    c) There’s a good deal of extended fighting involved. It’s easier to manage your supplies if you only have to worry about fuel and the condition of your melee weapon (broken/not broken), rather than fuel and ammo for your various ranged weapons. Not to mention that alot of these pilots are expending all of their ammunition to clear away the trash more easily, before engaging the remainders (usually the people skilled enough to dodge).

    There’s no need to insert your racist subtext into a discussion on anime. (lol Japanese psyche…please.) If you hate a given show, stop watching. No need to make the problem worse.

    Also, to keep this on topic, wtf is with the episode preview? Lies, deceit…Lavinia’s trap? XD

  15. Before this episode there was a hint of Lavinia liking Sara but this episode just proved it. I was laughing so hard when she ran into the room dressed in a bunny suit and asked Sara if she wanted to come back to her room for their own private party. Next weeks episode looks even better with Lavinia setting a trap for Sarah. Lol that I have to see. Oh yeah can’t remember if this was mentioned but the voice actress for Lavinia also voices Konoka in Negima!? Coincidence I think not.


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