OP1.01 Sequence

OP1.01:「Preserved Roses」by T.M.Revolution×水樹奈々 (T.M.Revolution x Nana Mizuki)

「エルエルフの予言」 (Eru Erufu no Yogen)
“L-Elf’s Prophecy”

It seems like Kakumeiki Valvrave has found its stride – the show stayed comfortably in the action-suspense zone this week and delivered another roller coaster ride from the onset to finish. It’s undeniable that Valvrave appears to be downright off-the-wall from a real-world perspective and it might even seem like a stretch within the conformity of its genre. But similar to Code Geass or even Star Driver, Valvrave is amazing precisely because it doesn’t stick to the rule book and in spite of its outlandish narrative, the show can easily outshine any straight-faced action series for the sheer thrills and suspense that it brings to the table. This is a product of an assertive writer who has become very much at ease with such a wacky premise and to say Okouchi sensei has pulled it off once again in the third episode would be a gross understatement.

There are many things I find intriguing about this episode, but it’s best to start with the one element that stood out far above all – L-elf. From the moment he went on a happy massacre at the interrogation room, it was apparent that Valvrave was not going to hold back in the depiction of L-elf’s tremendous talent as a killing machine. His moment in the spotlight was tense and tight as a tick, and once the hunt for the escaped prisoner began in earnest, there was no shortage of bloodshed, explosions and duplicity. L-elf is a fascinating package of contrast – subtle and reflective in his inner thoughts, but extremely to the point at carrying out his mission. There were really no half measures in his pursuits – he is living up to the “One-man Army” moniker effortlessly and a complete badass through and through. What becomes clear almost immediately is that the prodigious Dorssian soldier has a bigger agenda on his mind and it’s hardly surprising this is where Haruto comes into the picture. The nature of L-elf’s grand plan has been intentionally left vague, but we know for sure it contains certain dark secrets about Dorssia that could bring about a revolution. Whether L-elf has figured out the true extent of Haruto’s new abilities is a question that remains up in the air, but it’s safe to assume he knows more than he’s letting on, especially as regards JIOR’s prized humanoid weapon.

The hyperkinetic action scenes in this episode pretty much speak for themselves, but there was also a layer of political sideshow that warrants our attention. Nothing is ever as straightforward in wartime and as usual, the line between hero and villain is not exactly clear-cut. The introduction of Senator Figaro, the sleazy politician from ARUS doesn’t make the debate any easier and no question, there are strategic motives to ARUS’ interest in JIOR, chief of all is to prevent Dorssia from getting hold of the Valvrave. Haruto seems somewhat adrift in his newfound fame as the “The Boy Who Fought against the World”, and more than ever, he is bewildered by the strange occurrence that is happening to his body. That he is a pacifist by nature is utterly beyond doubt, but I have a certain suspicion that his quick acceptance of ARUS’ aid might have backfired and JIOR has now become the prime battleground for the two opposing forces. Whether the crisis can be defused by L-elf’s uncanny proposal to form a contract is something we’ll find out next week, but needless to say, the series off to an excellent start and things are certainly heating up as the story enters a more dramatic stage.

Random tidbits:

tl;dr: @SeishunRC – #Valvrave 03: L-elf is badass! Evacuation plan failed, impending war at JIOR next week unless…#Anime

171 Comments

    1. Yeah, I love how the main character tells literally everyone else in his clique about his condition except his love interest about his condition simply for the sake of pointless drama and love triangles, even though she’d be the first one to accept him for what he is.

      And by love I mean I FUCKING HATE IT.

      Although I am liking the gym teacher.

      Da5id
      1. this seems to be a few hundreds years from now. Hopefully twilight isn’t a thing anymore

        p/s: he might be able to just simply tell her, but he should, and probably the main reason, be afraid that he’s gonna harm her, knowing there’s something inside him that he can’t control

        Aster
      2. My thoughts exactly. I was staring at the screen in disbelief when I saw everyone there but her. If you lose control that easily you might want to give the people you hang around the most a heads up, im just saying.

        Jani
      3. Can you truly claim that you won’t be freaked out having a partner that loses control of his body and attacks people like some kind of a beast?

        Can you truly claim that switching bodies won’t bring any other side effects?

        Can you truly claim that Haruto won’t receive discrimination from those who witnessed his powers?

        Can you truly claim that this is all there is to Haruto’s powers? For all we know Haruto might be able to do things that are more terrifying than switching bodies.

        Can you truly claim that, if you were in Haruto’s shoes, you would be able to tell Shoko that you’re some immortal, body-switching , losing control of body, mecha pilot?

        Can you truly claim that you can protect Shoko from your berserk self when you can’t even control yourself?

        Can you truly say you have no self-doubts whatsoever like Haruto does?

        If you can truly say yes to all those questions then feel free to criticize Haruto as you wish.

        FiveOVER
      4. Can you truly say they’re not going to find some plot convenience to make Shouko accept him in the end?

        If you can truly say yes to that, you’re free to take this BS seriously if you wish.

        Da5id
      5. What you find as plot convenience or what I find as plot convenience is entirely subjective. So yeah, I can say there will not be any plot convenience and be correct.

        In the first place, what you perceive as a plot convenience is simply a reason for the events that happen in the story that you don’t like or find far-fetched. In many cases,despite the fact that the turn of events are entirely logical, people call it a plot convenience simply because they want the story to go in a direction of their choice.

        FiveOVER
      6. If you’re still unconvinced that what Haruto did was entirely logical as a human being, then i’d say you haven’t gotten yourself to understand others yet. (this is in no way an insult. I’m just stating what i think of those who can’t understand others especially a fictional character, whom the writer already clearly display his motives and emotions.)

        As a fellow human being and as someone who interacted with others, you should know how humans think or feel. Instead of stating my opinions, I’ll just state the facts.

        – Humans are affected by what others think of themselves. It varies from person to person and pose a varying degree of importance to them. This is shown through people who follows the crowd, those who are ashamed of their various habits and so on.
        Despite what you or Haruto may think, others who don’t know haruto that well will definitely regard him as a monster. Imagine now where a considerable portion humanity actually discriminates against fellow human beings not of their races, knowing that haruto is immortal and has the power to switch body at will will definitely cause alienation or even outright abuse.

        What would Shoko think of him? This would definitely Haruto’s biggest worry and contributes to his emotional outbreak.
        At an age where what others think of you is of paramount importance, I can totally see Haruto acting that way. The fact that he might not be able to handle the burden of being singled out doesn’t help too.

        – Humans are creatures that oppose change.
        Despite what you say about Haruto’s actions, have you actually tried putting yourself in his shoes? He underwent so much change in the span of just two days both physically and emotionally. He changed from a normal high school boy to a pilot of a giant robot. He changed from a human being to someone who can survive a stab to the heart. He suddenly have the ability to switch bodies at will. He started killing people. He suddenly have to fight off intruders of his colony. And all this happened in the span of two days. As a normal high school boy, I truly doubt he can assess his situation logically and arrive at a logical conclusion. As a human being he has already arrived at his capacity limit and he no longer knew himself like he did before all these events. Can you really blame him for acting that way?

        – Morality is instilled in humans. Humans who broke their own principle and did what they think is bad and immoral will feel guilty and self-loathe.
        And Haruto is no different. To many people, killing is wrong and Haruto clearly think that too. The fact that Haruto killed those people out of REVENGE doesn’t help either. He broke his principles, he did what he thinks is wrong, he knows he did it out of revenge. Naturally, he hates himself now. Remember, Haruto is a high school boy. Killing is a BIG deal for him.

        – Humans are beings that act based on emotions, not logic.
        If Haruto would sit down, think about it calmly and logically, he would indeed come to the conclusion that he is a human and that he has nothing nothing to be ashamed of.

        However, you must understand the situation Haruto is in. I can’t even imagine the amount running through Haruto at that moment when he said those words. He’s feeling relieved that shoko is alive, he’s feeling horror from what he has done to L-11 and the people he killed, he’s feeling by the amount of changes that happened, he’s worried about what others might think of him, HE’s confused about what happened to him and those around him, he’s uncertain of his future having obtained these new powers, he’s angry at himself for doing all of that, he’s upset that he is no longer what he thinks he is, he’s confused over his own identity.

        Under that torrent of emotions, can you really expect Haruto to think logically about his situation?

        If after presented with so many reasons on why Haruto acted that way and you’re still unconvinced. That just means your mind is already made up and nothing i say will ever change your perspective.

        FiveOVER
      7. The problem with all this overanalyzing is that you and I know that this sort of angle will be barely covered within the anime’s entire run. And no, logic does not come to people immediately after stressful situations like that, but Shouko will find out at some point, and she will accept him because she’s been presented as that kind of person. Unless she dies again. It’s a foregone conclusion, so why delay it to create drama?

        Da5id
      8. And for the record, I do WISH these themes of exclusion in society would be used properly, but I just have sincere doubt that they will be. I’ve just seen this kind of thing too many times to get invested.

        Da5id
      9. Let me put this straight: relationships aren’t that simple. Yes, they do love each other and yes, they do care for each other. But isn’t it because of that lovers are afraid of hurting each other? I don’t see why we should forego those conflicts even if, you say, that its a foregone conclusion?

        To me , the journey is just as important as the destination. IF every conflict would be removed from all romance stories, they will all proceed as follows: Guy meets girl. Guy/girl fall in love. Guy/girl confesses. End of story. Romance stories are all about conflicts and problems they face. So I really don’t see any problem with this turn of events. They are not dragging it out, they are making it more interesting.

        Unless you’re only interested in seeing two couples being lovey-dovey, then the only thing that i can say is: you can’t find that here.

        FiveOVER
      10. Actually, as a lot of people have commented in the previous episode, a straight up relationship from the start would be a welcome change of pace for this sort of show. What always tends to happen is that the relationship ends up becoming the end goal, but that’s idealizing relationships. You’re right, relationships ARE complicated, which is why it is much more interesting to see how the characters act WHILE IN THE RELATIONSHIP as opposed to waiting for them to get into it like you already know would happen. How does their bond change now that they’ve taken this next step in spite of all these new changes around them? What challenges will they go through to make it work? What if it DOESN’T work and they’re ultimately not right for each other? These are all things that could give the characters multiple facets as they learn about themselves while learning about the conflict happening around them, which tends to be the thing teenage heroes are made for.

        But we’re not getting that. We’re getting the same shit again because Sunrise is in a creative rut.

        Da5id
      11. That’s what you like to find in romance and i have no right to deny that. All I can say is that it’s too early to tell where this show will bring us. I’d reserve my judgements for later.

        FiveOVER
      1. She’s true to her role as the designate hime-cut character of the show. They aren’t allowed not to own. All she has to do is show that she can actually fight seriously.

        Man I’m so glad I’m just watching this show instead of trying to dissect everything about it at this point. I still get the sense if this weren’t a mecha show and didn’t have this fanbase a lot of the more “blockbuster action movie” things it does would be more taken for what they are instead of nitpicked. I mean it’s not totally unfair I guess, it just seems like such a tiresome thing constantly having to address the fact that the show indeed like many others has *gasp* flaws and the entire discussion must come to a screeching halt at times so people can make their grand speeches about it and drag everyone else and the show through the mud each week. It just always feels like people try to dig these things up and every single shortcoming no matter how small has to be magnified and analyzed to death whenever it’s a Sunrise mecha show whereas otherwise it may come up once and then people will let it go.

        Oh well at least it’s not as bad as the shitstorm over that swimming anime. I do not envy the people trying to seriously discuss the prospects of that show one iota and wish them the best of luck cause they’ll certainly need it.

        Kaioshin Sama
  1. So…. are we supposed to side with L-elf? He’s undeniably badass but I’m not sure what his stake in all of this. All I know is that he just prevented a civilian evacuation. Those ARUS bastards, how dare they remove non-combatants from a warzone! In fact, ARUS is looking like the good guys here since they show actual concern for civilians whereas Dorssia razed the entire city.

    Still its more of the same that I enjoy from a Sunrise show. Its reveling in over-the-top action and absurdity. I’m also glad that there is a lack of emo Haruto, any moment where there is none of that is a plus. Needs more mecha action though. Its what I came for this show.

    fragb85
    1. At this point of the show we’re not sure ARUS true intentions are. We have to remember that JIOR is all about neutrality and peace and by having ARUS be the good guy it will go in their favor to use them to help crush Dorssia.

      SilentCid
      1. I’m getting a very Gundam SEED vibe from this.

        ZAFT{Dorrusia} entires neutral colony ORB(JIOR) to steal Gundams(Valvrave) then the Earth Federation(ARUS) comes in to defend ORB.

        But then the last 5 seconds completely changed the story.

        Taiyo
    2. Well all three factions are based around their real world counterparts:

      JIOR- Obviously Japan
      ARUS- America(mostly)/Britian/Any other European nation
      Dorssian- Russia

      Now you probably have a better picture of how these nations are gonna act. Dorussia like it’s counterpart doesn’t hide it’s intentions and makes it pretty clear that they want everything. While ARUS on the other hand if it is anything like the US government it will pretend to be your savior while taking you for all you’ve got and it’s mostly for the benefit of themselves. In short they will have some alterior motives most likely getting JIOR’s technology secrets and making them ally to put Dorussia at an disadvantage(buffer nation in real life). Now JIOR is just like modern japanese in that it likes to avoid conflict and run away or give up at the slightest attack.

      Haseo
      1. Really? Personally I can’t help thinking of Dorssia as futuristic Prussia/ Nazi Germany- I mean they even speak german. Also those Blitzkrieg-like tactics and emphasis on quality over quantity (they got outnumbered by ARUS pretty easily).

        Although looking at their borders on that map it seems that not all of Germany’s territory is under their control, so who knows…

        Kizuna
      2. we have Orwellian 1984 superpowers, plus some fun wordplay
        Eurasia (Dorssia, combo of Deutschland and Russia)
        Eastasia (JIOR – Japan-India-Oceania-?Republic?)
        Oceania (ARUS – Allies’R’US)

        ewok40k
      1. it is hard to choose but ultimately id have to go with Shouko; she’s fun, looks like she can hang with the boys, she’s honest with herself, and i cant help but not forget the chemistry between her and Mr. “Monsters arent allowed to love” in episode one.

        sonicsenryaku
    1. Shouko is too much of a heroine for her own good which got her almost killed the first time. She should stick with mob of students and let someone like Saki who is willing to point a weapon handle things from here on out.

      SilentCid
    2. The love triangle is the whole reason I’m still watching this show. I just think it’ll be incredibly amusing.

      This is the first time I’ve ever liked both heroines of a love triangle. Come on girls, I wanna see some fighting soon!

      Diyedas
      1. Going by Gundam logic in a show created by the guy who helmed Code Geass is a bad idea.

        Heck, knowing Valvrave enough now, going by Gundam logic wouldn’t work even if the show wasn’t related to CG.

        Diyedas
  2. I still have the doubt that ARUS is in the good side. I mean everytime I watch something like this, the twist will happen unpredictably. Well, I’m still confused about the protagonist and antagonist in this series…

    The vampire!Haruto is actually kind of creepy for me. And that L-Elf, he steal the entire show just for himself. Haruto who is the main character dimmed in the front of L-Elf.

    Hopefully, there will be more action in the next episode!

    Acc11
    1. Nether side is the good guys here, JIOR is being forced to choose between two horrible poisons: surrender to Dorssia and die as a nation inmidiately or ally with ARUS and become their toy in the war of two colossus. Whatever happens from here on out is everyones guess but I doubt JIOR will come unscratched from the conflict.

      haseo0408
      1. Actully, that has yet to be proven. So far I see no grey shades yet and it seems very cut and dry, black and white. So, the ARUS used Haruto to help motivate the students and boost moral around the world. It’s no different from what the Allied Forces did in WW2. The ARUS have yet to show any sort of bad side. They helped out JIOR who was their ally, and are evacuating the citizens from a now dangerous zone. I wouldn’t call Senator Figaro “sleazy” either until we actually get to see him do something. He has had bit parts and he has helped them in their time of need. The ARUS is not trying to take over JIOR, they are responding to their call for reinforcements they made in episode 1 before Dorssia blew up their command center, and now are trying to get the refugees out.

        So far, the ARUS has been a vague presence thus far, not really doing much of anything. Unlike Gundam SEED, which introduced main and supporting cast for all three sides in the war in the first episode, Valvrave only has main characters from JIOR and Dorssia. ARUS didn’t even come into the picture until last episode and they’re really just background. Dorssia on the other hand, has let you know they’re the bad guys. They forcibly tried to concur a nation and deport and/or kill its people, just because it’s “stronger”. It showed its colors in the first episode. Don’t paint this show as “Gundam SEED” until it actually proves to be so. I’m not saying that this show won’t eventually get darker and show both sides to be grey. But right now, the sides are pretty clear; don’t jump the gun.

        Irenesharda
      2. Irene-san Gundam Seed was the last thing on my mind when thought about my theory and for the record, I agree it´s too soon to know the motivation of all sides but I have this policy of suspecting everyone in this kind of war scenarios. Yes, Dorssia would made Hitler proud so they´re the bad guys, no discussion there but ARUS has much to gain by protecting JIOr and lot hell to loose if they contrie´s military secrets end up in dornssian hands so it´s only natural they don´t play fair. I´m expecting a lot of betrayal and manipulation from this political setting.

        haseo0408
      3. I’m hesitant to call ARUS the good guys right now only because we’re too early in the game and knowing Okouchi sensei, he’s bound to throw a few curve balls at us 😡

        Seishun
      4. @IreneSharda

        You are looking at the situation too superficially. There is no right or wrong in war. There are no good guys or bad guys (if you want to name it that way) in war. There are only those who are victorious and those who are not, and by convention (if you look into world history), the victorious side are deemed as the ‘good guys’ in history. Does that make them righteous, however; that is an entirely different question.

        It is true that Dorssia attacked JIOR at the start of the show, but that does not inherently make the country the ‘bad guys’. You cannot deduce from the fact that a ‘supposedly’ neutral nation being attacked would mean that the aggressors are bad guys. It is known that ARUS and Dorssia were at war and that JIOR is an ally of ARUS. We, however, don’t know about the history between ARUS and Dorssia. ARUS could very well be the aggressors, and Dorssia merely responded in retaliation.
        Thus, Dorssia cannot be viewed as a villainous nation merely because it attacked JIOR. Every conflict entails deaths and destruction – such is reality. ARUS could very well be doing the same to Dorssia’s Space ‘modules’.

        In a world with only three main unions (ARUS, Dorssia, and JIOR), the collaboration between JIOR and ARUS is dangerous. Such would mean that Dorssia is a union that is politically and economically(perhaps) cornered by ARUS and JIOR. Viewed in this way, can it truly be said that Dorssia is the ‘bad guy’?

        The sides in the show are not clear, and they never will be.

        In regards to ARUS’s actions, I am very suspicious of what it is doing. Stating that ARUS is a ‘good guy’ merely because it aided JIOR when it requested for reinforcements is, yet again, a superficial view of the world. No country would aid another country if it could not derive any benefits from the other. It may yet be a politically convenient excuse to further ARUS’s goals by depriving JIOR of its resources, for example.

        Actus
  3. So much over the top L-Elf killing spree this ep. Fun ride, just trying not to think about it too much, or it will be ruined 😛

    They trolled us pretty well with the vampire bite too. I was just trying to figure out which of them would be the next victim, but I guess it’ll be another ep or two before that goes down.

    FarHorizon
      1. I’ve been trying to figure out what color her hair is for a while. I thought white at first, but when I saw the ending, I noticed that it could be taken for light pink in the opening as well. But that could just be shadowing like you said, given the dark settings she’s drawn in. I can’t even look her up in the official website, since she’s not there yet.

        I guess we won’t truly know until she appears in the show.

        Tre
  4. If by “found it’s stride” you mean “completely derailed and is charging towards 20 orphanages” then yes.

    How the hell did Sunrise manage to make a trainwreck derail faster than Geass? This plot makes no fucking sense anymore. It’s as if they shoved a bunch of random plot points from past shows together.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m going to keep watching this because it’s a Sunrise trainwreck and those tend to be entertaining, but let’s not kid ourselves that this is anything more than a trainwreck.

    Tarage
    1. You’re really misusing the term “trainwreck” here. That’s what you call a show whose execution starts rolling completely out of control away from the original intentions of the creator (if they had any).

      Gundam Seed definitely falls within this category, and the wreck goes on for most of the show.

      Code Geass kind of derails plot-wise as it approached its end, but it’s still damn entertaining overall, so I guess it’s kind of a debatable trainwreck.

      This show hasn’t even come close to approaching trainwreck levels yet. Outside of the freakish Valvrave elements, the plot holds together well so far. In fact, it’s kind of the opposite of making no sense; it’s a pretty basic plot at this point.

      Tre
      1. Sorry but Gundam Seed is far from being a trainwreck: The show is about Kira, it was always about him and how he interacted with the world.

        GSD is for Shinn, although Kira hijacked the show eventually.

        The Moondoggie
    2. If you want to just trash a series without actually trying to have any sort of meaningful discussion, Tenka Seiha would be a wonderful place for you (trust me, I go there and enjoy reading the posts a lot). Using meaningless terms like “trainwreck” and “nonsense” without actually being able to state what you do not understand can end up being accurate descriptions of yourself.

      Also, if this helps you formulate your thoughts better, I do hope you realize there are more than one person that contribute to the composition of each episode. For a mech series like this, there is also a very important person given the role of SF Research. Most of the complaints for this series are credited to this guy thus far, and to lesser extent, the person handling the storyboard per episode, but not the animation team, music team, sound team, nor the main writer with the two sub-writers. This series does have issues, but comprehensibility is very low on that list.

      PS: Just friendly advice, if you enjoy watching disasters unfold, you should reconsider life priorities.

      Kunagisa
      1. ^This (especially with the Tenka Seiha reference. Not against the bloggers but the style of writing)

        The issue any sensible viewer will have with comments like ‘this doesn’t make any sense’ is there are no proper or coherent reasons given for WHY the series is a trainwreck 3 episodes into what is presumed to be the first season.

        Owaranai
      2. THANK YOU! I know it’s going to happen regardless cause it’s a Sunrise show and there will always be people calling it this at the mere site of something they don’t like cause it’s a pretty big meme on 4chan, but I don’t know what kind of response they expect from the normal people by posting it on a blog like RC. As you pointed out channers and blogs like Tenka Seiha (so channers) will eat that shit up all day long and it’s really the only good place for that sort of talk.

        Kaioshin Sama
  5. Called it last week. L-Elf is awesome. I kinda freaked out when he slit the hell out of that guy’s neck though. Lol

    Aside from that, this episode is making me go bonkers. L-Elf saying to Haruto that they will revolutionize Dorssia? So does that mean he was going to betray them anyway?! What!?!?!?! My mind… exploded.

    Jel
  6. I got a very weird vibe towards the end of this episode. I know I am going to take some flak for saying this, but after watching this episode I got a chill that reminded me of Guilty Crown past episode 12 or the school arc. I’m not saying the series suffers from the same problems, however it kind of felt rushed and the whole enemy becoming the good guy seems weird. There’s too many inconsistent plot developments and then L-Elf becoming a walking killing machine is…weird. Why would the person who 2 episodes ago would suddenly show an interest in starting a revolution against his government?

    The next episode preview does kind of worry me as well, since L-Elf seems to be gaining (allies?) support from the students. L-Elf is clearly confused and maybe Haruto had an effect when they swapped bodies? But I for one hope things do not work out according to L-Elf and he’s presented with some kind of resistance. It’s feeling too predictable and easy with him being able to kill everything + manipulate everyone (judging by the episode preview). If anything, L-Elf could be in a position to force Haruto to cooperate if he turns the student body against him for assisting ARUS failed Evac plan.

    Of course this is just me speculating, only 3 episodes in. So we have time at least for some of these things to get answered.

    Akizuki09
    1. Remember the next episode’s name: “The Valvrave is the Hostage”.

      Let’s analyze what L-11 did this episode. He revealed he had a plan he knew could execute, and even inserted a self-fulfilling prophecy to the mix to freak Haruto out. He knows Haruto is abnormal, and he knows he did “something” to him.

      Haruto had agreed to execute a rescue operation alongside ARUS and promised everyone they’d be safe. Then along comes L-11 and shuts down the operation by force. What does this mean? He’s making the people think neither Haruto nor the ARUS are reliable. Panic ensues.

      Now our brave monster hero is in a pinch. He can’t do anything to solve this situation on his own, and telling people everything will be alright won’t work either (I mean, he told them everything was gonna be alright and it wasn’t). Not to mention that he was already conflicted about collaborating with ARUS, who obviously are only interested in the weapon of mass destruction that is Valvrave. Haruto, like JIOR, is between a rock and a hard place.

      Then L-11 comes along and tells him that he’s fucked, feeds him misinformation, and forces him to do as he says, because he can offer to make the situation better for Haruto, while he takes advantage to make this situation work the best for him.

      What part of that is L-11 becoming the good guy? He’s establishing his role as the primary antagonist. As the person who’s more dangerous than the other 2 villains present, and much more efficient to boot.

      EH2
      1. How are the ARUS “obviously” interested in the Valvrave? They’ve really hardly even asked about it or mentioned it. It’s Dorssia that really wants it, the ARUS were really worrying about L-11 most of the episode. In most anime, if the side is interested in something such as an advanced mech, they would begin to interrogate the pilot either nicely or cruelly on what the machine is and how he got it to work. The Earth Forces even did that in the first episodes of SEED. Here, it seems as if the ARUS could care less. They’re really there to evacuate the citizens and make sure Dorssia doesn’t get a foothold in JIOR.

        Irenesharda
      2. I would not say L-11 is the primary antagonist. There is no evidence in the past three episodes which indicates that he opposes the protagonist. At best, his actions would make him an antihero, but that is only what could be concluded from the past three episodes.

        @IreneSharda

        You are looking at the situation too superficially. There is no right or wrong in war. There are no good guys or bad guys (if you want to name it that way) in war. There are only those who are victorious and those who are not, and by convention (if you look into world history), the victorious side are deemed as the ‘good guys’ in history. Does that make them righteous, however; that is an entirely different question.

        It is true that Dorssia attacked JIOR at the start of the show, but that does not inherently make the country the ‘bad guys’. You cannot deduce from the fact that a ‘supposedly’ neutral nation being attacked would mean that the aggressors are bad guys. It is known that ARUS and Dorssia were at war and that JIOR is an ally of ARUS. We, however, don’t know about the history between ARUS and Dorssia. ARUS could very well be the aggressors, and Dorssia merely responded in retaliation.
        Thus, Dorssia cannot be viewed as a villainous nation merely because it attacked JIOR. Every conflict entails deaths and destruction – such is reality. ARUS could very well be doing the same to Dorssia’s Space ‘modules’.

        In a world with only three main unions (ARUS, Dorssia, and JIOR), the collaboration between JIOR and ARUS is dangerous. Such would mean that Dorssia is a union that is politically and economically(perhaps) cornered by ARUS and JIOR. Viewed in this way, can it truly be said that Dorssia is the ‘bad guy’?

        The sides in the show are not clear, and they never will be.

        In regards to ARUS’s actions, I am very suspicious of what it is doing. Stating that ARUS is a ‘good guy’ merely because it aided JIOR when it requested for reinforcements is, yet again, a superficial view of the world. No country would aid another country if it could not derive any benefits from the other. It may yet be a politically convenient excuse to further ARUS’s goals by depriving JIOR of its resources, for example.

        Actus
      3. It cannot be deduced that ARUS is ‘obviously’ into obtaining Valvrave, but from the circumstances shown, it could easily be inferred that obtaining information about Valvrave is inherently ARUS’s goal. Although they did not interrogate the Haruto, if you pay careful attention to some of the scenes, you will see that in one of the scenes, there was a crane taking out a part of Valvrave that was broke off.

        To ARUS, there is no benefit derived from interrogating Haruto. He is a mere highschool student and it is highly doubtful that he possesses important information. Other than that, it would not be politically viable to do so due to high publicity surrounding the situation. If Haruto was indeed taken in for interrogation, it would be a move that may result in political repercussions. This point might be irrelevant to the military, but it is relevant to the senator. This might also explain why the senator is there. On a side note, as a JIOR citizen and with his friends in danger, Haruto would not escape anyway.

        From ARUS’s point of view, they are interested in Valvrave; they are oblivious to the fact that it changes the physiology of the ‘chosen’ pilot. In such a situation, it is only logical for them to retrieve Valvrave (as explained by the crane) and defer Haruto’s interrogation until later. Most of the information about Valvrave (in ARUS’s perspective) could be reverse-engineered from the wreckage anyway.

        Actus
      1. I find it interesting that the named Dorssian characters only have a code name to them, like L-elf = L-11,
        Q-vier = Q-4,
        A-drei = A-3.

        Do you think this might have a higher implication on how Dorssia works in future eps?

        zztop
      2. @zztop – To me they feel more like codenames than anything else. They’re all agents as well as pilots, and just like ‘007’ and ‘James Bond’ (save for the current 007 whose name -is- James Bond), the alphanumeric designations could very well be just codenames, and their full names could be hidden within file for identity protection.

        EH2
  7. I had my suspense of disbelief shattered this episode.

    In just 15 minutes, L-Elf traveled down well over a dozen stories, setting up explosives around the perimeter of each level as he went, set up anti-ship missiles and a smoke screen, and THEN he climbed back up to where he’d started, somehow predicted exactly how ARUS would act, then went all the way back DOWN.

    Even going back more, how did he unscrew the screw with that sort of posture that doesn’t allow any sort of strength to flow to his hands? It would require superhuman strength to do in that position, not to mention throwing it from that angle hard enough to shatter a light. Further, how did he cut such thick rope with a shard of glass in a second? What is this madness?!

    Furthermore, the fact that ARUS is shown to be so completely incompetent as to not set additional guards and have them all within the same room as L-Elf, as well as the complete lack of thermal or infrared imagery on their vessels to see through the smoke, the herp-derp panic of the ship crew over a little smoke and one man, causing them to wreck the ship and stop the evacuation.

    This episode just screamed Code Geass R2’s “I outsmarted you outsmarting me outsmarting you outsmarting me outsmarting you.”

    I know anime tend to generally throw out conflicting physics when it suits them, but the complete facepalm-worthiness of L-Elf’s escape was very jarring to me.

    SerRompalot
    1. Thanks for actually pointing all these out. Honestly with all those L-11 seems to be at least as inhuman as Haruto since a normal human body just isn’t that strong or durable. Especially when you add in the fact that he seems to be bullet proof as incompetence can’t really explain not being able to shoot the guy who is going straight down while you’re shooting from above.

      HakumeiJin
    2. Hahahaha the trick with this show is to not think about it tooooo much. Just simply enjoy the ride and all will be fine, or else you are going to have a hard time watching it in my opinion.

      Jani
    3. Apparently Rambo has nothing on L-Elf. After pissing me off by doing the impossible things after impossible thing the final straw was when the ship captain was saying how did one person do all this and the woman officer that was by him said: Remember he is known as a One man army.

      …. Seriously? The people are sure taking their time admiring their enemies in this show instead of doing anything useful. She only said that in case the viewer didn’t get the message the first 5 times they mentioned it before the events unfolded.

      I thought that watching this show would provide me with some entertainment and action but all I have after this is rage and disbelief. Ahhhhhh….

      Zahha
  8. I’m pretty sure L-Elf has some foresight superpower. Being able to see the immediate future and actively change it would make his amazing massacre a more logical possibility. It would be somewhat like Haruka in “Until Death Do Us Part”.

    1. The ARUS drove them out. They mention that Dorssia only sent a small fleet to take over JIOR and that the ARUS military was able to take them out but barely. They mention that if the fleet were normal size, the ARUS wouldn’t have stood a chance and would have had to get reinforcements. However, knowing that. I have to say the JIOR’s military sucks. especially since all it took to take down the country was a “small Dorssian fleet”.

      Irenesharda
    1. He looks like a villain sue right now because his efficiency stands out. Dorssia are a strong military power, and as such they’ve trained agents who are very capable in what they do.

      It took him 15 minutes to get far from where he was being held, and he had rigged the place with bombs. You could say 15 minutes is very little time, and you could say he couldn’t have prepared explosives (and missiles for later); but that could be just because L-11 had good intel, and no one says he couldn’t have stolen vehicles and weaponry from his captors to make his plan happen. And we can’t know how much of his plan was improvised (his ‘prophecy’ was pretty vague and he could’ve achieved the same results in many different ways).

      L-11 is shown as a capable agent because he’s the counterpart to Haruto. Haruto is the typical SR show main character, a luck-based ace with very little understanding of how war and politics really work. L-11 is a very comprehensive foil in that he’s good at what he does not because of pure luck and a super robot, but because he has training, practice, and a deeper understanding of the situation; and that’s his advantage over Haruto.

      Episodes 1 and 2 were Haruto’s chance to be known as the hero of the story, but L-11 is the deuteragonist and episodes 3 and 4 will be his chance to establish why is he in that position.

      EH2
  9. The Arus army was given specific orders to apprehend L-Elf at first sight, instead they blew all their ammunition in spectacular failure. Fodder to show how awesome L-Elf is.

    Not saying I didn’t enjoy Valvrave, it’s so ridiculously grand like how Sunrise shows should be. High entertainment value. Basic practicality thrown out of the window.

    Yet to choose between Saki and Shouko. Leaning toward the former though.

    Dunn
  10. i thought all the bombs he miraculously had planted everywhere was such shit. i get having back up plans, but having some unknown freighter responsible for the evacuation conveniently rigged was way too much a suspension of disbelief and there are plenty more ways it could’ve been handled better…

    ah well, it was an interesting episode to say the least but the anime seems quite content to have peeps randomly appear in the places the plot requires them to be which comes off as incredibly lazy… it’d be nice if they could focus a little bit on the smaller portions of the sections for the anit-grav ray

    Bananarchy
  11. Valvrave continues to entertain, week after week without fail- not sure where Sunrise is going with it plotwise, but I’m sure everything will start making sense… Eventually. Despite the flaws this show has, I look forward to it every Thursday, it’s just a lot of fun, I mean it’s basically every Sunrise show ever, all we need now is an idol group.
    Wasn’t expecting Akira to be living inside the school though, that was unexpected- hope we see more of her soon, because she’s adorable. =3
    L-Elf is a badass, no arguing that, and I loved the Madoka vibe the closing scene gave off- wonder what he means by “contract” exactly?
    I’m now 100% aboard the Saki ship, as Shoko seems pretty keen on setting her own death flags- and so far, Saki definitely seems like the more interesting character. (I’m a tad biased though, as I love Haruka Tomatsu…)
    Also, I thought it was hilarious that the preview got reduced in size so they could advertise the HG kit… I for one, am definitely picking up the kits and the inevitable action figures Bandai will release. ^^ I just love the design of Valvrave, and want to know about the other ones, are they different forms or different suits? Guess we’ll just have to wait and see!
    So long story short, I’m really digging this show.

    katsudon
  12. LOL at that map. WTF? Japan and SEA is part of JIOR! If only something like that is reality, China not being a landgrabbing bully and everyone is agreeable.

    And I’m getting the feeling the ship battle between the two main girls here will end up like how the ship battle in EVOL ended.

    The Moondoggie
    1. I believe the map was designed more on simplicity and geographic contiguity rather than Real-life politics, or perhaps hopefully since it’s so far into the future, people had grown out of the sociopolitical problems of today. I love fictional geopolitics 😀

      Cobeurn
    2. It does explain the Japanese influence in Valvraves designs, from its weapons to the Harakiri, though considering how the Dorssians killed the only people with any actual knowledge of why and how it was built, it may be quite some time before we get any details on the Valvraves origins.

      Frontier
      1. I think the guy with glasses and a lab coat who was in the car with Shouko that got blasted underground is one of the scientists that were involved with Valvrave. I’m guessing any answers about it are likely to come from him.

        Tre
  13. Ananas
    1. I am to busy being outraged at the stupidity of this show to be entertained unfortunately. Good for you guys who can overlook such things. Keep watching but I am never gonna touch this again. =p

      Zahha
  14. Now that’s the way to do suspense.

    Cryptic words and accurate to a fault. L-elf is certainly looking to be a real antagonist of the year here. As if it weren’t enough that we are told he massacred 500 men all by himself, the episode reiterates his efficiency, accuracy and brutality by showing the killing of an entire company. And all that to establish his grounds for making a contract with Haruto. Badass. (and it all started with one tiny screw. Never looking at them the same way again XD)

    The switching scenes depicting panic and a growing tension and suspense on Haruto’s part was pretty well done, and I couldn’t quite get my eyes off the screen as the situation unfolded and ended with a mini cliffhanger. That word ‘revolution’ sparked off a intrigued response in my mind and gets me wonder what L-elf’s true intentions are. What an irony it would be when A-drei and bishounen gang still want to believe in L-elf’s loyalty when he actually isn’t all that loyal.

    Figaro already sounds pretty fishy to me with his pretty words and slick speech. From a third-person perspective, it’s pretty easy to see that Haruto is being used and will possibly be manipulated even further in the name of helping his own nation. With that adulation from people all over (and Haruto doesn’t even look like he wants to bask in it – does this guy have any airs at all?) comes the belief that they trust in him and the newfound power. All the right ingredients for making use of Haruto and Valvrave as a politicking and military tool. Not bad, not bad.

    With regards to the vampirism, I’m wondering if the urges are gender-bound. Though perhaps too few to draw conclusions, the two instances where Haruto lost control of himself to bite were males. May I be proven wrong.

    As for the shipping…like you, Seishun, I’m pretty much torn between the two. I’m leaning more towards Saki, but it seems like her reactions might make her a little more of an antagonist than protagonist, with her jealousy so easy to read.

    Loving the series now, though it will probably take one more charged episode to draw detractors away from…detracting.

    Owaranai
  15. I would have enjoyed the end scene much more if it went like this:

    L-Elf: “Make a contract with me, Haruto…”
    Haruto: “Eh?”
    L-Elf: “and become a magical girl!!”
    Haruto: “What!?”

    someone should make a pic of L-Elf with QB ears…

    Zannafar
  16. So it seems L-Elf planned to betray Dorssia from the start. If you think of it that way, maybe some of the guys in the bishounen squad, mainly Fukujun, were planning to follow Eruerufu in his desertion, which is why Fukujun was so shocked at his TRUE betrayal when he shot him. He must have thought L-Elf leaked the plan to Dorssia and tricked him. This could also explain the explosives, Eruerufu planted them in advance for his plan.
    My guess is that Eruerufu was planning to steal Valv and then keep it for himself, not hand it to his country, but Haruto got in first, so now he’s trying to get him on his side.

  17. Welcome to this week of Inconsistencies: The Series.
    Alright, Valvrae continues its custom of stealing ideas of another stories, but making L-Elf the evil lost brother of Batman is way too much. Bombing a whole building from top to ground in less than 5 minutes? WTF?!
    andohbytheway, the “three way distribution of Earth” (JIOR, ARUS Dorssian) is clearly Gundam 00 S1, with all its political schemes and betrayals left and right. And we have to see this in a Dyson Sphere scenario? Petty territorial schemes and xenophobics?

    And while I like Haruka Tomatsu’s characters in general (in any series), she can’t save this one alone.

    SeedStriker
    1. He had 15 minutes (not 5) to search for the explosives and plant the bombs before they realised he was even out of the cage. L-elf had (of course) enough time to prepare and perform his D-plan. Anyone can do that (in games). XD

      Ebisu
  18. After watching this episode, a friend of mine went and put the dynamic between Haruto and L-Elf in a rather poignant manner.

    L-Elf : brain of Lelouch with the physique of Suzaku.
    Haruto: brain of Suzaku with the physique of Lelouch.

    I loled pretty hard.

    Asobi
    1. why don’t Dolssian Nuke them or use Fleja instead of sending a small squad to jack a Gundam like in seed . Bad guy never learn this show could end in episode 1. and hell ORB and JIOR is still a small country which possess an advanced tecnology.
      this show is quite good. I really love thier idea but surely they could make the stage grander lol.
      L-ELF where did you hid all those staff when you were tied up, i bet in your a..
      Just saying some stupid random point XD
      I love this show so much to care about what i wrote.

      pokpok
      1. JIOR includes India and China. Hard to believe that as being small considering how many people in the world that accounts for. Not to mention nuking a small part of a dyson sphere would just destroy everything, including the Valvrave.

        Annyms
    2. Well L-11 has “L” as his letter, which is both the initials of Lelouche Lamperouge; and as we know, his number (11) also has a deep connection to Code Geass (and to Suzaku).

      This might be Okouchi’s way to homage his previous work in this one.

      EH2
  19. A good breather episode after the hectic, fast-paced, mecha spectacle that was the last two episodes.

    Wow, I knew L-Elf was competent and effective, but not that competent and effective. Though to be fair, ARUS hasn’t been established as the effective military force that Dorssia is. I guess L-Elf completely owning them was meant to serve both as a means of showing how skilled he is as an operative and a strategist, and to show just how incompetent ARUS is in comparison. I’m a little worried about L-Elf’s skills really overshadowing Haruto down the line, but hopefully Sunrise can keep him in check so that Haruto can still be in the spotlight.

    As for his character, this episode certainly through a wrench towards whatever preconceived notions I had for him. Instead of being the loyal and model Dorssia soldier, it appears he’s been planning his own betrayal long before Haruto showed up. But in Haruto he’s found a new plan, and that plan involves using Haruto as a means of liberating Dorssia from whatever leadership it’s currently under. Valvrave the Liberator indeed. Still, it remains to be seen whether his revolution is something Haruto wants to be a part of willingly. I wouldn’t be surprised if the two eventually come to blows over differing ideals, though it’s far too early to call L-Elf as the ultimate Big Bad of the show.

    The “Childhood Friend” bomb was finally dropped on Saki, and I’m interested to see how she acts moving forward. The fact that she asked Shoko about their relationship at all is a sign that she’s at least interested in Haruto, though whether that’s in a romantic sense remains to be seen. On the other side of the developing triangle, Shoko isn’t taking Haruto not confessing well, but her meeting “Rainbow” may just thrust her more into his world than he could have ever expected or wanted. Here’s hoping that, if the creators are indeed going for a love triangle, that it’s developed well and used effectively in the plot. As for the inevitable shipping wars, I can say I like both girls so far and will try to remain impartial, though I can’t say for sure if I’ll feel the same by the end of season one.

    We also got to learn a lot more about Saki as a character in this episode. Disregarding L-Elf, she seems to be the most genre savvy member of the cast with her blatantly identifying Haruto as something like a vampire and why trusting ARUS wholeheartedly isn’t the best idea. Haruto’s reaction to her line about adults leads me to believe that before episode one she wasn’t really acquainted well with anyone in the cast other than Aina, and Saki was probably just at the shrine to hang out with her rather than Haruto, Shoko, and Kyuma. I wonder if we’ll get more of her background as her relationship with Haruto develops?

    So even a light cut sets off Haruto’s vampire/body jacking mode? I guess he’s going to have to be very careful about getting into fights in the future, though it seems a good slap from Saki is enough to shut him down. Maybe that’ll be a running gag? In any case, barring his inhuman powers, Haruto seems to have accepted the responsibility that comes from standing up to the “world.” Though while Figaro being a genuinely honest politician is still in doubt, he had a point about how even one unit wouldn’t stand a chance against the full Dorssia fleet. Some foreshadowing for a future event maybe? Haruto and the Valvrave will definitely have their work cut out for them if they prove themselves a big enough threat for the rest of Dorssia to get involved, and it looks like they’ll get their start in the next episode as it looks like Valvrave is going out with its new armaments in tow.

    Frontier
    1. If you already knew this show is the work of the writer of Code Geass and you weren’t expecting this kind of show…

      …well I don’t know what to tell you.

      I mean, seriously. This is like expecting cutesy fluff from Urobuchi, or not expecting pretentiousness from Masamune Shirow, or beginning to read a work of CLAMP and being surprised by their dramatic and obfuscated way of writing. If you’re complaining at this point in the game, it’s because you didn’t know what you came for.

      EH2
      1. The fact that this turd comes from CG writer only rubs it in further.

        Why was he able to keep at least a semblance of balance and rhythm in CG, and not here? Too much cocaine, or plain old desperation? I`d vote for the latter, considering everything and the kitchen sink approach he utulizes with his characters.

        1
  20. In this episode,
    >// Check\injury
    >/// Blood\loss = true
    >//// Execute: repair
    >// repair = success
    >/// Execute: MOveride
    >// MOveride = error

    Seems like they could’ve added a bit more specific code to his nanites like, no mind override bite if it isn’t a mortal blow. Perhaps it was in the changelog for valvrave v2.1, unfortunately.

    Vloxalion
  21. I actually like the bad guy a lot more than Haruto, his pacifist by nature and being so naive really annoying the hell out of me. He think that this world is all rainbow and sunshine that everyone can just live in peace. Probably next episode something bad gonna happen and he might start to wake up that peace cannot be achieve by just talk, he want peace than get into his robot and go wipe the other side from the face of this universe than he can achive peace.

    mike
    1. Well, at least Haruto is set on nonviolent ideals for ending the war, which makes it admirable (despite that when I think about it he did go on a killing frenzy on trying to get revenge for Shouko). I kind of understand how you would dislike Haruto, but considering how composed he is, I think he’s a stable main character that goes to look at saving his friends and civilians (just wanted to point out, Haruto doesn’t really seem like a pacifist due to how after learning about Shouko still being alive he still killed about of Dorsian pilots)

      Dualash
  22. Wow, I’m really posting my comment late.

    I’m not going to lie, I laughed a lot during L-Elf’s moments of ridiculous ownage. He calls Haruto a monster, but after that, can you really call him human?

    Also, animation error, Nanami(-chan)-sensei has Shoko’s eye (and possibly hair) color in her first scene. Whoopsie.

    It was kind of sad seeing the normal cheerful Shoko so down in the dumps. Poor girl; thought that the guy she liked felt the same way, and despite preparing herself, he ends just making a comment that’ll probably just make feel weird. But after that scene where Haruto went vampire again, I’m thinking that’s going to make him even less eager to take the next step, and I don’t blame him. Also, while previously there could be reasonable doubt, Saki wondering about Haruto and Shoko’s relationship and her reaction upon finding out shows that she clearly has some kind of interest in him (though whether it was romantic or not remains to be seen).

    Admittedly, I’m kind of afraid that next episode, L-elf is going to win over the student body as a way of manipulating Haruto into helping the person that stabbed and shot him in cold blood only a couple of episodes ago.

    P.S. I never would have guessed that Akira was Satomi’s little sister (same last name and everything, as seen in the credits). They don’t look anything alike.

    starqo
  23. L-Elf, reminds me of a perfect version of Setsuna F Seiei and Sagara Sousuke.

    The lion, the lamb and the fox.

    Does the actions of the characters in the ED hold some meaning?

    iron2000

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