「彼女たちのネガイ」 (Kanojotachi no Negai)
“What They Wish For”
Well I did say at the start this was a Gundam second season. Shock and awe? Plot twists? Wondering just what the hell happens next? Got all that and then some. I would say I told you so – but then again we’re still waiting for the real twist of the show aren’t we?
Right off the bat let’s get the obvious out the way: yes, Aerial is in fact a human being, Suletta herself isn’t anything special abilities-wise, and yes, Suletta ain’t an only child. Outside the latter this was a running prediction since the very start (albeit in hindsight the signs were there), so it’s not as impressive a twist as it could be, though getting it right now barely two episodes into the second half certainly raises an eyebrow or two. The big reason is just what this means for mama dearest and her goals. Prospera after all has effectively been made into Witch from Mercury’s big bad, with Quiet Zero her weapon of choice for achieving said goals. Controlling the totality of human electronic networks for the sake of collective peace and happiness? In true Gundam fashion simply a front for what her real objectives are. We may not know exactly what those are just yet, but rest assured it has something to do with Prospera’s second daughter and the reason she wound up getting the Ghost in the Shell treatment. Wouldn’t be the first parent to sacrifice the world for the sake of their child.
As for the more personal side of matters, yes Suletta has now racked up a second kill (no matter the technicalities surround it), and oh yes, you can definitely feel the coming dilemmas for a few of the cast. Suletta’s predicament is fairly straightforward: she’s piloting the key to whatever Prospera has planned, has an intimate relationship with her virtualized sister (who Suletta may not even know is her sister yet), and has proven to be easily swayed in a given direction on a whim by Prospera. This is going to cause some serious conflict with Miorine sooner rather than later considering Miorine herself is on the fence over involvement in Quiet Zero, something Prospera is fully aware of. Should Prospera decide Miorine needs to go there’s no saying what Suletta might wind up doing – or what Aerial might do should Suletta choose poorly.
And all of that then brings us to the pettier squabbling at work. Shaddiq finally making a move for example was well-choreographed in advance, Nika giving into her conscious (at the expense of her friends) was always going to happen, and even Elan’s continued – and increasingly determined – attempts at wooing Suletta were bound to factor into the larger story at some point. All these threads basically act as distraction, a veritable fighting over table scraps given none involved are even remotely aware of the larger struggle at play. Shaddiq after all is fighting to become head of Beneritt – he has no idea how poisoned that chalice is or how impotent the actual power it possesses in practice will be once Quiet Zero comes online. Likewise Nika’s role is effectively bringing both sides into open conflict, forcing Miorine to come back to deal with the fallout as it pertains to GUND-Arm, Suletta to become involved and pick a side, and to show Shaddiq (once he learns the extent of his folly) just who the true power players are.
Without a doubt everything is coming together in a rush to yield the main conflict of this story. The only question now is when it all comes to a head – and just whose move will herald the start of the fireworks.