「カベルネの襲来」 (Kaberune no Shuurai)
It wasn’t quite enough to invoke any real emotional response, but the human sacrifices in this episode worked towards one of those moments when Sunny fell victim along with the rest of the monastery nuns. The only thing overshadowing that was another run-in with Gauche, whom Lag was able to hit with his shindan and convey some of the memories they share. It was definitely progress in terms of bringing Gauche around; however, it was pretty evident that the letter bullet would be needed for any real chance of doing so. Regardless, I did enjoy seeing Zazie and Lag team up to drive back Roda and get the jump on Gauche. It’s just a shame the same can’t be said about how things ended between Connor and Sunny.
While this series hasn’t made out the Reverse organization to be a bunch of tactless killers, it’s moments like this that make me wonder if they have any intent of killing Bees they come across. Connor was easy pickings given his precarious situation, yet Roda decided to retreat instead of quickly finishing him off. From a story standpoint, it’s probably easy to cough it up as part of their plan — letting Bees live so that they can keep stealing their letters — but it’s just as easy to conclude that this isn’t the kind of series to get bloody. Thus far, shindans have been useful for knocking people around without inflicting fatal wounds.
At the moment, it’s mostly my interest in Roda’s past that has me sympathizing with her at times. I sometimes wonder what she’ll do if Gauche’s heart resurfaces, assuming that Lag will bring him around sometime before the end of the series. Given the huge conspiracy going on in Akatsuki, it seems like the story could turn completely upside-down with the Bees turning against the capital. If that were to happen, then the lines between friend and foe with Reverse may even blur. Between that possibility and the one where things remain as they are with the Bees at odds with Reverse for their extreme methods, it’s probably unlikely that there would be such a drastic turn of events. Instead, I foresee the Bees deciding which party is the lesser of two evils.
The subplot involving Connor and Sunny was a nice touch, but I still found myself much more interested in the overarching one about Lag and Gauche. Even after Gauche was hit by Lag’s shindan, it didn’t look like it was enough to get through to him in any noticeable way. At least, that’s what the preview scenes suggest as much by showing them still fighting. Hopefully the letter bullet will be used next time, as I really don’t want to see it saved out until the very end of this sequel. Part of me is still hoping that Gauche will rejoin the hive and help investigate what’s going on in Akatsuki.