「汚れのないその瞳で」 (Yogore no Nai Sono Me de)
“Through Those Untainted Eyes”
It’s been three episodes since Operation Plantagenet was brought up, and it looks like it may be upwards to three more before we actually see the plan to retake North America from the Inspectors take action. The reason being, the fourth enemy faction has made its way onto the stage in the form of Einst Alfimi, further complicating things for our heroes. On top of the Earth Federation switching over to a questionable military rule, we now have Neo Divine Crusaders, Shadow-Mirror, Inspectors, and Einst. It feels like a never-ending uphill battle, and one where everyone has to continue taking it one step at a time as the problems accumulate. To get us up to speed, just over half of this episode was invested in a more thorough explanation of Gilliam, Lamia, and Shadow-Mirror’s origins, as well as Dr. Kobayashi’s decision to put Mai back on the SRX team piloting the R-Gun Powered.
The former delved into the System XN’s Agyieus and Lykeios devices like I already mentioned last episode, including talk about Lemon’s W-Number artificial humans, so Lamia’s formal addition to the team was my personal highlight in that scene. In a similar fashion was Arado joining up, making the first half of this episode primarily about concluding their respective subplots about who’s side they’re truly on. During it all, what I personally left the most lasting impression was Daitetsu’s clearly objection stance towards Kenneth seizing command of the Earth Federation Army, suggesting that the Hagane and Hiryuu Custom crews won’t continue doing exactly what he wants them to forever. Super Robot Wars has always been about a small select group that fights for what they believe in, so it’ll be interesting to see how much longer they put up with Graien Grusman in office.
In any case, the delay on Operation Plantagenet didn’t stop us from getting an early preview of a clash against the Inspectors, as the Hagane and Hiryuu Custom crews fight to reclaim Hawaii. While the animated portion of the battle was fairly brief, it did give us another look at the rivalry between Masaki and Aguija, as well as Kyousuke realizing that his Alt Eisen isn’t up to snuff in its current state. It also marked the first time Aya‘s taken part in her R-3 Powered, alongside her aforementioned sister Mai in the R-Gun Powered. More so than their fighting, the focus was on the discord within SRX Team after Ryuusei and Rai‘s disapproval on making Mai fight again, which is sort of the way I was expecting them to react after finding out that she’s still alive. I am however looking forward to seeing SRX itself formed at some point now that Mai’s back, and how much nicer the variable formation should look in this adaptation. It should be a noticeable step up from Divine Wars, considering how much better this sequel looks.
Other than that, there wasn’t too much to take away from Alfimi’s mysterious arrival in her Persönlichkeit robot, aside from how she sounds just like Excellen (being voiced by Mizutana Yuuko and all) and is interested in Kyousuke. For now, an explanation on that and the way it affected Excellen looks like it’ll be saved for a later episode. Next time, we should see the Kurogane’s liberation of the Tesla Reich Institute, during which Sanger receives his Daizengar (a.k.a. Dygenguar). I gather it shouldn’t be long before Elzam receives his Aussenseiter as well, leaving me wondering when we get to see the “Tatsumaki Zankantou” combination attack where “real men ride each other”. As wrong as that sounds, it’s actually ongoing joke that those familiar with the Alpha or OG games they were featured in will get right away.