OP: 「騎士行進曲」 (Kishi Shinkoukyoku) by angela
Rejoice, humanity! For the Knights of Sidonia have returned to protect us from the alien scourge that foul our universe. Led by the invincible Tanikaze Nagate, we fear no Gauna, for there was no Gauna capable of defeating him in our simulators. Mere mortals could only hope to score even 1/63rd of his 999999 points! But wait! With our brand new simulator and a little effort, you too may be able to get close to his skill level! Now we only have to worry about our brains being taken over by a new potential threat within our very home!
Jokes aside, part of me wonders Tanikaze’s skill demonstration might’ve actually done more harm than good for some. I can definitely see it being an inspiration to the people who will end up fighting beside him and those that will truly gain from the new simulator, but there’s a certainly a measure of backlash to be had from those who would just get demoralized at how inferior they are to him. I guess it’s not a big deal in the long run though, because my pick for best Sci-Fi of 2014 is back, and I couldn’t be more excited.
Even better, things start off like it’s business as usual, and we all know what that means. It’s never a dull moment when it comes to humanity’s fight against the Gauna, and it’s another week filled with emergency deployments, potentially sinister internal plots and conspiracies, new threats, and big plot twists. There’s a measure of pleasure to be gained from Kunato being taken over by Ochiai given what he did previously in the first season, but I’ll say, the devil you know (one who was about to turn over a new leaf no less) is likely better than the devil himself returning from another age—especially one whose deeds almost killed everyone many years back.
At the very least though, humanity does manage to gain an additional weapon in its arsenal in exchange for the potentially insidious threat growing inside the Sidonia itself, even if it may come back to haunt them in the long run. I mentioned last season that if humanity here’s going to have a chance against the Gauna, they’re going to need to stay one step ahead with the constant development of new techniques and weaponry, and it looks like they’ve gotten one right in the nick of time. Ironically, it doesn’t seem to be quite a human construction as it is one involving the Gauna themselves, but it’s as they say: if you can’t beat em’, join em. Granted, it’s more of a “get one of them to join you” thing this time around, but who’s caring about the semantics? Using one’s own weapons against them is always one solution, and I’ll be damned if I’m not excited about all the possibilities this gives us in terms of action and the series’ narrative in general.
The questions do remain though: How did Ochiai end up with this seemingly Human/Gauna hybrid in the first place? Are his motives to protect the Sidonia? Or is it merely a pretext for the establishment of something else? There’s definitely a lot left to the Sidonia story with Ochiai rising secretly from the shadows again, and it makes you wonder just how much he can do with his skill set and his position as the head of Kunato Development. Thankfully, it looks like the answer to that is “a lot”, and we’ll be sure to benefit temporarily as viewers because the peaceful Sidonia is one filled with romantic overtures and hilarious epic jet pack arrivals. And they say that’s emergency equipment? You don’t know how lucky you are, Tanikaze! Or should I say Izana?
In any case, did I mention the OP yet? Because yeah, that was business as usual too. I have a soft spot for sequel opening sequences that borrow bits from their predecessors, and they’re definitely doing it here, giving this new OP a fresh and nostalgic feel at the same time. There was a bit of a spoiler here early on with the reveal of Tsumugu, but I’ll take a little bit of spoiling if it means I get another military anthem to start off my day with. The schematic focus continues in the ending as well (this time on the Gardes instead of the Sidonia), and it’s truly a return to the Sidonia universe in more ways than one. Sometimes, it’s hard to believe how fast time flies.
ED: 「鎮魂歌 -レクイエム-」 (Requiem) by Customi Z