「タイトゥン・アップ／génération bleu」 (Taitun Appu)
This marks the second in the collaboration between Zephyr and Myself to provide two perspectives on two of the season’s best shows – E7:Astral Ocean and Jormungand. I hope you’ve enjoyed our little experiment – if you’ve had half as much fun reading these posts as we did writing them, then we enjoyed them twice as much as you.
All of my favorite series in this outstanding season are carving out a special niche in my viewing consciousness. With Sakamichi, it’s sheer awe at watching a true master do his stuff. With Tsuritama, it’s pure, unbridled joyousness and a seemingly impossible amount of smiles (mine, and the characters’) crammed into 22 minutes. And with E7: Astral Ocean, it’s that damn slider on MPC – it keeps malfunctioning every week, telling me these 5-minute episodes are 22 minutes long. It has to be a fault – there’s no way 22 minutes could move that fast. I’m ordering a full diagnostic.
Of course, that this was true again this week (for me, at least) when BONES gave us effectively a world-building episode is a tribute to the stellar writing of this series. I know some disagree, but I love these world-building eps in multi-cour, SF/Fantasy shows because they’re essential both in grounding our understanding of the world and in making the characters into three-dimensional figures. I loved them in Seirei no Moribito (many didn’t), I loved them in NGE, even some of them in the original E7 – and this was an excellent one. It was important for us to get to know Generation Bleu – how it operates, what the daily lives of the pilots and crew are – and also to begin to flesh out the other pilots, especially Pied Piper. BONES’ attention to detail in GenBleu’s mountaintop HQ was impressive – the konbini, the kissaten, the transportation – it’s mostly unnoticed but that kind of structural support makes everything in the series feel more real.
So after watching this episode, would I be correct in assuming that the next time there’s a hurricane in my area, it’s probably because there’s a bunch of secrets coming and I’ll be able to get a glimpse of Generation Bleu!? What? No you say? Because it’s an anime? Darn it!
Ahem* Horrible attempts at comedy aside, if there’s one thing I noticed from this episode and about Astral Ocean (to be abbreviated “E7:AO” from now on) as a whole, it’s the sheer amount of references they use in every episode. Most likely though, this is because the original series also used references to old songs and bands in its episode titles. However, this was one aspect that made the original series a lot deeper than it looked, and is thus a welcome addition to E7:AO. There is one key difference though, and it’s the fact that the references in E7:AO are much easier to understand and to determine the origins of. Perhaps it’s because most of the references this time are pretty much only to recent or notable anime, but regardless, it makes each episode even more enjoyable when you get that “Eureka!” (see what I did there? :D) moment when seeing a reference to a show you’ve watched before.
And well, here’s a quick list of some of the references I got or at least aspects that made me remember other things. I have put each reference in spoilers in case you have yet to watch the series.
Author’s Note: Lost in America’s 2nd-round match at the 2012 Aniblog Tourney starts Saturday, May 12 at 1:00 PM PST. Thanks to your help LiA scored a big win in the first round – I hope you’ll consider supporting us again. If you’d care to vote or just check out the various matches, just go here: