「決断 オーバーロード」 (Ketsudan Oba Rodo)
The calm before the storm gives way to the beginning of the hostilities, and it’s all guns blazing as the Delta Platoon engage in combat with the Aerial Knights. A new theme from Walkure serves as the backdrop to a full deployment of Siegfrieds, giving us the music + combat package we’ve come to expect from the franchise while also delivering an assortment of mouth watering Valkyrie close-ups.
The first real combat for Hayate ends up a hit/miss as expected however, and while he does end up holding his own for the most part, his inexperience and attempts to keep enemy pilots alive ultimately lead him down a precarious path unfitting for his current skill level. What results is him being forced to kill an enemy pilot despite his best efforts, and it’s a wake-up call in more ways than one—especially for Mirage, whose life he saves in the process. Mirage’s inability to fight enemies of this nature ends up the major development, and this was a week that showed just how human she actually is despite her generally strict exterior.
As it turns out, she’s had her own struggles trying to fill the shoes of her grandparents, and it’s not surprising given their legendary status. At the same time however, you’d think she’d know better than to try and prioritize the lives of enemy fighters despite this realization and extra experience, but it just goes to show how she and Hayate are more similar than one would believe at first glance. They may be complete opposites when it comes to their flying styles—one is often precise but too predictable, the other unpredictable but not as skilled—but at their respective cores, they’re both pilots struggling to reach their full potentials while being crushed by the realities of combat.
Shifting over to the Windermere side, the aforementioned interaction between Mirage, Hayate, and the Aerial Knights also highlights the core issue with the former’s ability to wage war, with Master Herman clearly blundering in his attempt to give a fledgling pilot his first kill. At this point I wouldn’t be surprised if part of that was caused by Herman’s advanced age and the need to rush “younger” (though, technically still old by Windermere standards) pilots into combat, and combined with the obvious struggles experienced by Heinz after every song, it’s clear just how much of a literal ticking time bomb their war campaign is—even if the scars left by prior combat seem to give them some justification in waging it.
What that leaves us with is Freyja, who ends up being caught in between as the supposed Windermere traitor. Targeted especially by the Aerial Knights this week, she arguably loses her way the most out of any character this week, with Mikumo throwing verbal bombs left and right in an attempt to get her back on track. For the first time all series, she doesn’t end the episode with her usual interactions with Hayate, and this could very well mark the point where their respective paths start to diverge somewhat, with the opposite being said of Hayate and Mirage
Looking forward, the future brings with it an impending infiltration mission, and with it more promises of shenanigans involving Mirage. Fans of the latter’s pairing are likely having their fun in the sun at this point, but ultimately it’ll be interesting to see how all three of our main triangle try and find their way back from their respective set backs, and whether or not Freyja’s able to get back her groove before things spiral down even further. Until next week!