「闘う少年たち」 (Tatakau Shonen Tachi )
As we approach the mid-way point of Captain Earth, the general formula remains the same. For better and for worse, it’s all about tracking down the remaining designer children, and our newest escapade involves illegal underground wrestling/gambling institutions… run by Yakuza (one with at least one immortal member, WHAT!?). Because of course they would be. It’s all for educational purposes after all, so it must be legit!
All things considered, the patient approach has definitely become the name of the game here—both in terms of the show itself and the outlook expected from the part of the viewer. In many ways, this makes Captain Earth a follower of the formula used with Star Driver a little while back, and it’s a strategy that definitely yields its fair share of pros/cons. Because although there’s a clear sequence of
expansion preparation in regards to their revelations of all the designer children and their respective situations, the fact remains that this patient build-up comes at the expense of any other development. They’re certainly walking a fine line in terms of keeping viewers invested long enough to get to the climax you know is coming, and one wonders if they may not be overstretching their bounds somewhat in regards to this notion. In the end, the climax only means something if you have people staying long enough to watch it right?
Either way, there is a measure of interest that I’ve come to take in these individual stories over the past few weeks. It’s possible it may be result of me knowing what’s coming formula-wise on a weekly basis and tempering my expectations as a result, but the fact remains that there’s a clear (and interesting) contrast coming into play among the designer children, and Baku’s viewpoint this week highlights that notion. Unlike almost all the children before him, Baku actually seems content with the way his life is right now, and the fact that his innate powers seem to be warning him about rather than desiring the latent memories is significant in emphasizing how some might actually prefer the mortal life over an immortal/overlord one.
More importantly though, it emphasizes the importance of the people they’ve met and the interactions they’ve had with them, and it’s actually quite interesting to see how it all comes full circle. The beginning emphasized how the interactions between Daichi, Teppei, Hana (and later Nishikubo, Akari, and the rest of the Globe cast) led them to change and accept the situations they’ve been thrust into. Then they followed this up with a multitude of stories about designer children actually weren’t fortunate enough to end up in situations they were content with (which led to them to eagerly join the Kiltgang again). And now that we’re finally at the end of the line in terms of revelations, we’re hit one more time with another potential Kiltgang member who seems perfectly content to wave off his immortality for a regular life (notably due to Kumiko’s involvement).
In this way, both the first and the last children Amarok and Malkin approach might both end up rejecting their overtures, and there’s much to be said about the sequence’s significance in regards to how it could be a allusion to “the beginning and the end.” It may be that Teppei’s conversion to a Neoteny and possibly Baku’s impending conversion (or at least impending defection) are the beginnings of the Kiltgang’s end, and it’d be pretty awesome if that’s how it ends up playing out.
The question though, is how long it’ll take exactly for the climax of this series to play out, and it seems like that’s really the million dollar question here.
Author’s Note: Due to the show’s pacing, some logistical/staff changes here at RC, and personal things cropping up in the near future, Captain Earth coverage may be switched for a new show this coming summer season. It’s not a guarantee this will happen, but the chances are quite high at the moment. If this does happen, weekly coverage will likely stop with next week’s thirteenth episode. I apologize before hand if this ends up being the case.
Full-length images: 16.