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Episode 7: Parent and Children (Family)

 

Review by Peter Laliberte

April 20, 2005

 

Summary

 

Fumihiko looks over Kouyou and Sakura’s data, saying that they’re the most suitable to be pilots and Yukie says they just barely qualify. Youkou tells the pilots that they should take their time syncing with Fafner because they’re not rushing to fight. Kouyou says they don’t need anymore training and that he has a request. Soushi and Chizuru argue over Kouyou’s request and Soushi says they need real combat experience. After changing, Kouyou walks down a hallway and overhears two mechanics calling Shouko stupid because she lost their precious Fafner. He visits Shouko’s grave, only to find it defiled and he begins cleaning it. Kazuki and Soushi come with flowers and they’re shocked at the condition of the grave. They say their prayers as it begins raining. Esther demands a Notung model, but Fumihiko tells her they can’t give them one since they lost a Fafner because they were protecting the UN fleet. Fumihiko says they can’t afford any more sacrifices and terminates the communication. Mamoru and Kenji look at the picture Maya took earlier and Kenji says he can’t think of Shouko as gone. He says it’s like she transferred and Sakura tells him it’s because it’s easier to deal with it that way. Kenji demands to know what he should think and she says Shouko fought and died with content. She leaves and Kenji wonders if they should fight and die too. In the graveyard, Kouyou attacks Kazuki saying he should have saved Shouko. Soushi breaks it up and says it was impossible in that situation. Kouyou insists that he should have protected her and wonders if he should just accept that explanation. He breaks down crying and wonders if it’s all right for them to be alive. In the medical room, Maya holds Shouko’s sunhat and cries. Youkou meets with a committee and say that while Shouko’s loss was unfortunate, they have to move on. They ask her if she’d like another child, and she refuses, insisting that even though she didn’t give birth to her, Shouko was her daughter. At his home, Kouyou looks at a pasted together picture of Shouko and himself when he gets a phone call. The next day, Kouyou and Sakura are in the Mark Drei and the Mark Vier and are set to have a paintball match against Kazuki in the Mark Elf. The match begins and Soushi tells Sakura she’s doing fine while he tells Kouyou to control his emotions. Kazuki easily takes out Sakura and artfully dodges all of Kouyou’s attacks and then easily takes him out too. Round two starts and Kazuki just as easily takes out Sakura and Kouyou again. He does the same in round three and Yukie asks Fumihiko if they should allow them to continue. The Mark Drei and Vier are brought back into the hanger, both covered in paint. Sakura exits the Mark Vier and tells her awaiting mother that that wasn’t her true strength. Kiyomi says she knows, but if it ever gets dangerous, she wants Sakura to run away even if it’s against orders. This shocks Sakura and Kiyomi adds she doesn’t want her to end up like Shouko. Sakura says she doesn’t want to die, but she won’t run away. She wants to kill the enemies that killed her father. Kouyou is disappointed in his strength and his mother says he’s gained something by realizing his true strength. As Sakura and Kouyou are examined in the medical room, the mechanics say that if it was actual combat, the Fafners would have been coffins and one mechanic points out that the Mark Elf was hit once in the foot. Chizuru shows Kiyomi Sakura’s medical data and she breaks down crying. She doesn’t like that fact that they’re making children fight while the adults stay safe. She leaves and Kouyou’s parents come in. Chizuru says that Kouyou’s chromosomes have changed too and they don’t care. Kouyou’s dad says that their job was simply to raise a pilot and that Shouko was lucky because she got to destroy an enemy and that their real child didn’t get a chance. Yumiko and Chizuru don’t like their attitude.

 

Yukie reports that they found an island similar to theirs and Fumihiko says that their island wasn’t the only island made by the Arcadian Project. Soushi says it’s worth checking out and Fumihiko orders the Fafners and an investigation team to go look. Later, Maya finds Yukie and asks why she’s being put on the team. Yukie says it’s because they don’t have enough medical personnel and Maya has some knowledge in that field. At Kouyou’s house, Kouyou’s dad tries to get rid of Chocolat, saying they have no food to feed the dog. Kouyou says it can eat his share, but his dad tells him he just needs to concentrate on his job as a pilot and to throw the dog away. Maya runs into Kouyou on the street and says how cute Chocolat is. Kouyou asks her if she’s leaving tomorrow and she says she is. Kouyou goes to Sakura’s house but no one’s home so he goes to Mamoru’s place. Mamoru apologizes and says they can’t have dogs around so he goes to see Kenji. He’s about to ask Kenji to take Chocolat, but he sees some stuffed animals in the house so he decides against it. Kouyou takes shelter from the rain under a playground when Kazuki finds him. Kazuki gives Chocolat some food and asks Kouyou if he knows what’s happening the next day. He says he does and Kazuki turns to leave. Kouyou asks him if his family likes dogs, and Kazuki says his dad used to have a dog. Kouyou is going to ask, but he stops and Kazuki tells him not to catch a cold. Kouyou goes back to the cemetery and meets Youkou along the way. She thanks him and the sky finally clears up. Kouyou visits Shoukou’s grave and sees that it’s all cleaned up. The next day, Sakura demands to know why Kazuki and Kouyou are going on the mission and not her. He tells her it’s because he wants to keep an active pilot on the island so there isn’t a repeat of what happened with the Mark Sechs. Sakura is satisfied with this and leaves it at that. In the transit, Maya asks Kouyou if his dog is doing well, and he says it is because Youkou is taking care of it. Kouyou thanks Maya for cleaning Shouko’s grave and she says Kazuki and Soushi helped too. On the carrier aircraft, Maya sits next to Kyouhei Mizoguchi, who drinks from a flask and is surprised they brought Maya along. He passes on the flask and says it’s like going fishing, and you can’t fish when you’re sober. Soushi warns Kazuki and Kouyou that the other island’s defenses might still be active and that they’re just there to gather information. Kouyou curses Kazuki in his mind and thinks that just because Kazuki cleaned Shouko’s grave, he hasn’t repented his sins. Soushi tells him to not to think and to concentrate on the mission as the plane arrives at the island.

 

Commentary

 

This was quite the emotional episode. Kouyou is the main focus and he is obviously suffering from a broken heart. He blames Kazuki for Shouko’s death, although this is kind of unfounded, you can’t blame him for thinking that way. With all the focus placed on him, I see him dying soon. One thing that disgusted me in this episode was how the adults treated Shouko after her death. Blaming her for loosing a Fafner and even defiling her grave! Just awful. On top of the emotion, there’s a small paintball match in this episode, and it reminded me of episode three of Gundam 0083. Kazuki easily defeats Sakura and Kouyou, but is still hit once. What exactly is on this mysterious island? We’ll have to wait until the next episode to find out.

 

Overall Rating

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4 out of 5 stars
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