「死ぬまで一緒に」 (Shinu Made Issho ni)
“Together Unto Death”

The cliché quote is insanity is doing the same over and over with the expectation of a different result, but in the case of 86’s release schedule I prefer to liken it to Stockholm Syndrome. We know (or not) there’s going to be a delay, we are mighty disappointed by it, but goddammit it’s hard still not looking forward to what the next episode will bring. Case in point being this week, because while not much of action resulted, we have certainly set up for one hell of a showdown.

Much as has been delved into the past few weeks, the current struggle in 86 isn’t about survival as much as one’s place in the world. Survival is but a part of the larger conundrum, a condition through which the likes of Spearhead, Giad, and Frederica can find their reason for being, their reason to keep carrying on. It’s already known after all that Spearhead in general wants to see what lies beyond the horizon of war and how Frederica is bordering on desperate to keep her new family together (and rest assured she does she them as such), but Shin is the one who’s arguably held up things from truly advancing. He’s been quite literally in a world of his own and only now was forced to face its consequences head on.

What makes Shin’s epiphany this week all the more weighted is who forced him to face his nihilism head on. Having Raiden do the duty was important for two reasons: not only was it a message from someone who Shin has known far longer than the likes of Frederica (the one currently serving as Shin’s mirror), but it was a message holding nothing back. Simply put for the rest it doesn’t matter that Shin may feel lost, that he may not yet have found a purpose beyond his brother, his life is no longer just his own. Spearhead, Frederica, hell even Ernst and the Giad command, Shin has a responsibility to look out for them, and doing so means doing his utmost to stay alive. So what if Shin hasn’t found something to personally desire yet? If Anju, Theo, and Kurena can he can too, something Raiden – with a bit of pint-sized guidance – oh so bluntly made clear, and something Shin at least is now willing to entertain (even if some of it is due to Fido’s watchful eye).

The question up in the air is just how Shin winds up answering it because there’s still a vengeful spirit to put down and absolutely no guarantee all involved will make it back to find out. Legion’s Morpho may indeed be heading for destruction, but I wouldn’t bet on post-battle Spearhead staying the same as before. Best stay tuned boys and girls, things are about to get serious.

Pancakes note: given the next episode falls on Christmas Day, expect a day or two delay in posting *laughs in Boxing Day*. Family is important, and no more so than at this time of year in this current world. Make sure you enjoy the holidays and get some well-deserved rest everyone, that’s what they’re there for!




  1. I think I underestimated Frederica. I thought to myself no way would someone that young be able to withstand the gravity of Shin’s burden, only for her to turn out to have that same burden herself. Granted, her contemplating death after her mission of putting Kiri to rest does seem to be guilt-by-association driven unlike Shin, but the end result is the same; both their lives belong to each other now. And since Shin is now finally starting to take some steps towards coming full circle on his existential crisis thanks to Raiden and Frederica, their survival is now more vital than ever.

    1. Anju’s mention of family and children blaming themselves I think answers nicely why both Shin and Frederica are so fatalistic. Both believe they are at fault for their pasts and both believe they can only make amends through suitable sacrifice. The interesting part for me is how Frederica is currently where Shin was last season: still trying to find that peace Shin supposedly achieved after putting his brother down.

      Both really do need one another because they offer mirrors to each other, showing just where certain actions lead. As you say their survival is vital because losing one will send the other off the edge.

  2. For some reason, rather doubt there’ll be any more significant deaths. If they will reveal anybody’s death, it’ll most likely be from San Magnolia.

    Speaking of San Magnolia, boy do some of those plants grow fast. It’s only been one and a half months since the Legion attacked. But looking at the scenery, it looks like it’s been at least a year.

    Looking at logistics, I think Spearhead is out of their depth. Even with the Fido supply train, you can see they aren’t used to long duration missions deep in enemy territory. They’re used to having a repair station nearby after each battle. Wonder if they’ll touch on this later on.

  3. It is funny that you would bring up Spearhead’s place in their current era and that their survival is a distant second. When peoples survival is at times tied to their relevance. I say funny because I am getting the same vibe with 86 part two as I did with Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans. Both Tekkadan and Spearhead are fighting to prove their worth. To show they shouldn’t be looked down upon.

    But what will happen to spearhead? Because Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans all died.


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