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Episode 17: Eclosion

 

Review by Joel Jankiewicz

March 24, 2011

 

Summary

 

It’s raining in a forest as Yuji and Marlene sit in their A.S.s, waiting for the Blue. Marlene asks Yuji if the weather’s peaceful like it’s sleeping, but he doesn’t answer, instead taking some kind of pill from a dispenser to try to calm himself. Yuji asks her if she saw any Blue, but she tells him no. He then asks her what she asked earlier, but they’re interrupted when a few Blue manage to find them, and they engage them. Elsewhere, Tony leads Rick, Su and Alicia on what looks like an attack on a nest. Alicia complains about wanting to be Yuji’s partner, but as Rick argues with her, Brenda tells them to keep focused on the mission. Rick complies, saying once the nest is destroyed, they’d head straight for the rendezvous point. Brenda recalls asking Yuji why he wants a diversionary mission. Yuji said they need to get to a shuttle, but a Blue Nest was slowing them down, and detouring around it would take too long. He said if he drew them out, another team could take out the nest quickly, and they could all go back to Second Earth. Rick joked about how a Sleeper makes it sound easy, then Tony spoke up, saying Yuji shouldn’t do it. Yuji began to complain but Marlene held him back, then Tony pulled out a coin. He said that if the coin flips heads, Yuji diverts the Blue. But if it landed tails, Tony himself would be the diversion. Yuji agrees, and Brenda approves of the coin flip. Tony flipped the coin and held it on top of his hand, and revealed it’s heads. Yuji won the bet, and then Tony flipped the coin at Yuji. As Yuji caught it, Tony told Yuji not to die out there, with a concerned look in his face. Later, Yuji and Marlene fend off a few more Blue, with Yuji having a Chopper land on his A.S., but he shoots it off. Marlene asks if he’s okay, and he says he’s fine. She tells him his machine is overheated and overworked, but Yuji talks back to her angrily and tells her he volunteered for this mission and can’t fail. Marlene yells back at him, and Yuji stops and calms down. The weather suddenly clears, and Marlene takes off her helmet and tells Yuji that even though most of Earth’s population is gone, the Earth continues to live. Yuji can’t think of what to say, then he hears rustling in a bush and turns around, but Marlene tells him to hold his fire, as they both look in surprise to see African children who had come out of hiding. Meanwhile, Tony and his team kill a few more Blue, and continue to move. Alicia doesn’t like Tony’s loner attitude, but Su seems to be observing Tony’s battle data with interest. With Yuji and Marlene, they can’t believe how children can survive out in the wild with the Blue around. Marlene tries to approach them, but they’re frightened. She steps out of her A.S., but Yuji tells her to stay inside since they’re on a mission, which Marlene ignores. She kindly tells the children she’s a friend, and wants to know if there are others like them. They trust her and point in a direction. As one of the children try to touch Yuji’s A.S., he yells at the child not to interfere, which Marlene looks at with shock, but then he says the Blue are here. Suddenly, Marlene’s indicator goes off, and turns to see more Blue are coming.

 

A couple of Choppers are coming toward them, as Yuji fires at them, telling Marlene to get into her A.S. The children are scared and begin to run off, and as Marlene warns Yuji of the children, he tells her to shut up. He kills the Choppers, then hears rustling in the bushes nearby Marlene. He tells her move and starts shooting, but she tells him to stop firing as he doesn’t know if it’s the children. He yells at her to not stand in his way, but she tries to force his rifle down. They hear a large explosion and see smoke off in the distance past the tree line. Tony’s team has destroyed the Blue nest, and Su reports that all of their A.S’s functions, and ammunition are 90% or better, with no casualties. Tony watches the nest burn with a smile of delight, then his team heads out. Brenda tells the entire team that the mission is done and that they need to head for the rendezvous point, but Marlene says she won’t, which surprises Yuji, as she says there are still people out here. Marlene goes off in her A.S. in the direction the children pointed to, then a Doubleboard grabs Marlene’s A.S. and tries to crush it in its jaws, while an acid-like substance drips from its appendages. Yuji fires at the Blue, drawing its attention as it tosses Marlene aside, and charges Yuji. It pins him to a tree, but he uses his Double Edge to force the Blue onto it’s side, and he tries clawing away at it with one of the Double Edge’s Claw Hooks. It uses an appendage to swing at Yuji, but it only dents his machine and knocks Yuji’s helmet off. Yuji has a crazed, maniacal look on him, and Marlene watches in disbelief as he kills the Blue, surprised at his reaction. Night comes and they’re at the shuttle launch site, with other teams nursing their wounded and damaged A.S.s. Rick jokes to Marlene about how their unit’s the only one without casualties, all thanks to Tony and Yuji. Marlene simply stares into her mug of coffee, and he tells her not to take it personal, as Sleepers are just different. She asks him what it means, and he says it’s because they were raised on Second Earth, while Sleepers weren’t, and tries to hit on her by saying if they stick together, they’ll be fine. Alicia walks up and asks what he said, but Rick sighs and simply says how they’re fortunate to have Alicia around. She hands him a rifle and tells him to go watch, and shoos him off as she sits herself between Marlene and Rick. Alicia comments on how cool and brave Yuji is for going on that diversionary mission, and goes on to say she’s not impressed with Tony as he isn’t as cute and is strange. She said if she were to choose a boyfriend, it’d be Yuji. When she says that Yuji’s strong, Marlene says she’s wrong, as that’s not the real Yuji. Alicia says she doesn’t get it, and asks Marlene if she’s jealous of Yuji for becoming a better soldier. Marlene stands up and just keeps saying it’s not the real Yuji, and walks away, leaving Alicia dumbfounded, as she comments she was only teasing, while she burns her tongue on the hot coffee. Meanwhile in the APC, Su is going over the data she recorded of Tony while in G-Nest, and as Brenda steps in the vehicle and asks what she’s doing, she turns the computer off and says she’s only checking the return schedule. Brenda goes to check the computer to confirm, but Su actually plants a kiss on Brenda, which she doesn’t seem to mind, and they start making out. As Yuji is tuning his Double Edge, Marlene walks up to him, and says while she’s happy he’s dedicated, she wants him to relax. But Yuji says he can tune his machine better, still obsessed with better performance. Marlene sighs, having flashbacks of how human Yuji was in the past, then a glimpse of his face when he killed the one Blue earlier. She asks Yuji if the children are alright, but Yuji says that the children are probably dead, and if not, the Blue would’ve killed them eventually, saying it’s not their concern. She asks Yuji if he truly believes that, but he changes the subject, saying how he’s not close to Tony skills, using a marker to jot down Blue kills. Marlene’s surprised he’s keeping score, then Yuji’s reaction suddenly changes, then Marlene’s warning indicator goes off, with Rick speaking over the com link that Blue are coming. Yuji mounts his A.S., and Marlene’s shocked to see Yuji giving a devious smile, as he heads out into the field, leaving Marlene behind. Meanwhile, on Second Earth, the council is reviewing the data that Su sent them, and they seem pleased at the results. When Tony’s image of him in G-Nest comes up, we see someone who looks like Su look at the screen, then back at Victor, who simply smiles. Later, the shuttle departs after the Blue are fended off, carrying everyone on board. As they reach orbit, Yuji flips the coin back at Tony, who’s in a seat ahead of him, and they both smirk at each other, which brings a look of worry on Marlene. From a window on Second Earth, Seno watches the shuttle head back, keeping an eye on it.

 

Commentary

 

Things are taking interesting steps. When we first met Yuji and Marlene, Yuji was almost cowardly like, always concerned for other people, and kind. While Marlene was more by the book and willing to do whatever it took to accomplish a mission. This far into the series, the roles have reversed. Marlene is now a kind and caring woman, while Yuji seems to be only concerned about the mission to eradicate the Blue. The only difference here is, Yuji’s turning into a bloodthirsty soldier, in his obsession with becoming the best Sleeper pilot. We get a little more mystery as well…why is Su sending Second Earth data quietly to the council, when the 7th Special Division works with Sleepers to begin with? It is something that only the council knows? It has to be, considering Su’s willing to make out with Brenda to keep it hidden, the first sign of lesbianism in the show. What makes it more pondering is, we see someone who looks exactly like Su in the council, who was say earlier before hand some episodes ago. Are they twins? We also see Seno’s still paying attention to Yuji’s actions as well, so it seems not everyone has revealed their cards just yet.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

4 out of 5 stars
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