「シャドウミラー」 (Shadou Miraa)
The intermission last time was short-lived, as the battles kick into high gear against the approaching Neo DC forces before quickly coming to a crashing halt when Vindel and Lemon arrive on the scene. Shadow-Mirror’s existence is finally revealed to our Earth Federation protagonists, and it comes with the shocking revelation that they have to obey them now that Graien Grusman’s seized power. With the threat of the Inspectors, it makes perfect sense for mankind to take extreme measures to cast aside their differences and deal with the alien threat. The only problem is, that doesn’t simply mean with Van Vat Tran and Neo DC, but the war hungry Shadow-Mirror who perceive conflict as the catalyst to human development. As crazy as it sounds, part of me agreed with Vindel’s statement on how humans bring about rapid advancement of technology and growth as a species when they’re fighting for their lives. He’s correct in saying that there’s historic precedence, except it doesn’t really sit well with the vast majority of people when he’s so concerned about the end results that the means don’t matter. However, I do like how Shadow-Mirror’s objective is more clear cut than Neo DC’s, which seems to be more of a rebellious one now that Bian Zoldark isn’t around.
In terms of immediate developments, the most prevalent one was Arado’s attempt to get through to Seolla. While he was unsuccessful in bringing her and the Wild Falken back, it was pretty funny to see him finally get through to her by talking about her breasts. Evidently, all the brainwashing in the world can’t make her forget about that touchy subject, which Arado did compliment her on at least by saying that they’re big. As for Ouka in her Rapiecage taking on Shine in her Fairlion Type-G, that battle actually turned out to be pretty cool because it soon became Ouka’s GEIM System versus Shine’s precognition. The only thing really missing was Shine fighting back in some way instead of showing how long she could last dodging Ouka’s onslaught. I was secretly hoping that Lat would do something to free her Fairlion Type-S from Rapiecage’s clutches so they can unleash their Royal Heartbreaker, but I figured it was too early to see that again. To Shine’s credit, she did hold out long enough to cause Ouka’s GEIM System to reach its limit, before the Machinery Children, Egret Uruz, Anthuz, and Thurisuz (Ishida Akira), arrived in their Bergelmirs and took away the opportunity to recover both Ouka and Seolla. While their appearance was rather brief and mysterious, that scene did make a point of hinting at how they were created from Arado’s genetic make-up. For now, all there really was to take away from their sudden introduction is that we have even more faces joining the fray.
The highlight of this episode undoubtedly goes to Lamia though. After showing her true colors and threatening to self-destruct Angelg and take out the Hagane and Hiryuu Custom as per Axel’s orders, she shows the first sign of making a decision for herself after hearing Daitetsu‘s voice of reason to Vindel’s depiction of an ideal world. The only thing that took away from her noble sacrifice of unleashing the “Ash to Ash” detonation on Vindel’s Zweizergain is that he survived relatively unscathed, as did Lamia if her eject pod is indication of anything. What is worth taking note of is Lemon’s interest in Lamia after seeing her make a decision for herself — a development that should be revisited down the stretch. Tiding us over for the time being was the cliffhanger exchange between Axel and Kyousuke. I’m actually not too familiar with the Original Generation timeline at this crossroads in the series, so I’m curious to see where the Hagane and Hiryuu Custom crews go from here. I really can’t imagine them sticking around and taking orders from Kenneth Garret, now that he’s the commander of the military.