I may have jumped the gun when I thought Richthofen was going to get a new prototype Trial Krieger back in episode seven, but seven episodes later and we have just that. If you’ve been reading my weekly impressions on Argevollen, then it should come as no surprise when I say this is a welcomed development. I’ve been “silently clamouring” for the pilot rivalry between Tokimune and Richthofen to deepen since I saw it as a great means to see more of the war from Ingelmia’s perspective; however, in order for Richthofen to get more screen time, he’d need something on par with Argevollen so that he will clash more regularly with Independent Unit 8. Enter the Sturm Alpha, a.k.a. “The Ghost”.
Depending on how in-depth one chooses to (or cares to) watch anime, this probably comes off as more of a logical development than a predictable one. If Richthofen’s character was going to have any meaningful impact on the overall story, plus if the group of capitalists were going to play their cards further and prolong the wars as long as possible to reap all the monetary benefits, Ingelmia was probably going to get its own prototype Trail Krieger. What is less certain is which direction the writers plan to take this subplot. They could just wrap it up in the next few episodes with Tokimune defeating Ricthofen and then proceed to the next stage of the war that was hinted at the end of this episode—i.e. mass-production versions of the Argevollen and Sturm Alpha prototypes—or they could drag the rivalry out until the very end of the series where Tokimune and Richthofen (and thus, Arandas and Ingelmia) turn their attention to the guys manipulating them from the shadows once they catch wind of this “NR Syndrome” that these prototype Trial Kriegers are inducing on their pilots.
At this point it’s hard to say, because at the onset of the series, I was pretty convinced that uncovering the conspiracy behind Reika’s death was going to drive the main story from start to finish. Instead, it proved to only be another subplot and wrapped up entirely this episode with Tokimune acknowledging that he’s moved on. While his character growth from it was significant, this is just an example of how it’s difficult to tell exactly where the story is headed at times. Going forward, I surmise that the two characters that we should watch for and be suspicious of are Cayenne Toshikazu on the Arandas side and Erich Zarl on the Ingelmia side. They’re the main contacts for the Trial Krieger prototype manufacturers—Kybernes and Fordergrunt respectively—and they both enjoy a good glass of their alcohol of choice while they’re scheming in their offices. The latter I semi-jest about, but when it comes to anime, a sign—or a flag rather—is always foreshadowing something.
Lastly, we got a new ending theme and sequence this episode, meaning the next one will likely have a new opening to go with it for the second half of the series. I don’t get what the deal is with all the Jamie fan-service other than taking it as a telltale sign that she continues to add very little to the overall story, but I was quite surprised to see that Tamaki Nami was the artist of the song. I haven’t seen anything in anime from her since the Gundam SEED/SEED Destiny days. Those songs were really catchy so “Vivid Telepathy” was to me as well. Have a listen below.
ED3: 「Vivid Telepathy」 by 玉置成実 (Tamaki Nami)
Watch the 3rd ED!: Streaming ▼