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Episode 15: The Rising Wind in the Homeland, Part 1

 

Review by Arshad Adel Abdul-Aal

August 13, 2010

 

Summary

 

Chidori, her friends, as well as Weber and Mao are at the beach. Chidori’s feeling rather down and Mao apologizes for not bringing Sousuke because he had to work. Chidori denies caring about Sousuke. Several days earlier at Merida island base, Tessa introduces Sousuke to a man from Mithril’s information department. He shows Sousuke photos from a recent illegal arms deal in Helmajistan, and Sousuke is surprised to recognize Gaulon in the picture. The man asks Sousuke to join a mission with Mithril’s Indian Ocean combat division to assassinate Gaulon. Sousuke’s experience with fighting Gaulon, as well as his ability to pilot the Arbalest and his knowledge of Helmajistan’s landscape make his participation necessary. They inform Kalinin of this and Tessa apologizes for forcing this matter onto Sousuke. Sousuke says he would have gone anyway and Kalinin reminds him to not lose his cool. Kalinin tells Tessa not to worry since Sousuke is going back to his home ground. Tessa can’t help feeling that something terrible will happen. The team assigned to the mission heads towards the cargo plane. Andy wonders why the mission requires all five of them to take out one terrorist and Gray replies that he’s supposed to be very dangerous and uses an experimental weapon. Bill complains that they’re being underestimated. The team is surprised when they spot Sousuke. Jackson, Andy and Batiste aren’t very enthusiastic about Sousuke’s participation and Gray and Bill calm the situation. Gray apologizes to Sousuke and he says he doesn’t mind. Just as they get acquainted, Andy butts in and tells Sousuke that this is their mission and they don’t need his help. The cargo plane decloaks over Helmajistan and the team parachutes down in their camouflaged M9s along with Sousuke’s Arbalest. Jackson asks why they couldn’t fly all the way to the target and Gray replies that the local sandstorms will cripple the ECS. Sousuke flashes back to his guerrilla days and remembers his old comrade Zaied. Bill orders the troops to stop and they spot a convoy guarded by Savages and a red Shadow arm slave. Sousuke spots Gaulon sitting on top of the covered Codarl. The team discusses a plan to ambush the convoy by attacking from both sides of the valley it’ll pass through. Jackson suggests they steal the cargo afterwards and Bill tells him not to be foolish. Sousuke doesn’t approve of the plan, saying that they can only take out Gaulon if he’s away from the Codarl. Jackson and Andy tell him they don’t care about his opinion and won’t listen to Gray’s reasoning, claiming that Sousuke’s victory against Gaulon was a fluke. They voice their dislike of the Tuatha de Danaan’s crew for always getting the latest technology. Jackson accuses Gray of falling for Sousuke, and gets kneed in the groin. Bill dismisses the argument and Sousuke walks away sulking.

 

At night, the team prepares to ambush the convoy. Jackson complains that his crotch still hurts, and Gray asks Bill if they should pay more attention to Sousuke’s suggestions. Before they can discuss the matter further, the convoy draws near. Sousuke can’t spot Gaulon and neither can the rest. Sousuke’s constant objections to attacking cause Bill to hesitate, but Jackson gets impatient and starts firing anyway. The convoy skids to a halt, and the team begins the assault. The truck carrying the Codarl tips over and unseen by the team, the Codarl’s head LEDs light up. Batiste is firing at the other truck when the Shadow jumps at him brandishing its monomolecular cutter. Batiste pulls out his own but the Shadow dashes with blinding speed and stabs his M9’s torso. Before his teammates can rush to his aid, a burst of sand heralds the activation of the Codarl. Gaulon remarks that this may be fun. Jackson tries in vain to shoot the Shadow, and the wounded Batiste warns him to be careful. Andy is about to shoot with his bazooka but is interrupted by Gray shooting her bazooka at Gaulon. The carrier truck blows up and the Codarl emerges from the smoke unscathed to their disbelief. Gaulon thanks them for getting rid of his boredom. Bill charges at him with his monomolecular cutter, and Jackson and Andy attempt to back him up when Gray notices the nuclear warhead on the second truck. The Shadow suddenly jumps in and stands between them and the warhead. Gaulon taunts Bill, who dashes and slides under the Codarl attempting to shoot it close range. Gaulon blocks the shot and sends the blast back at the M9, vaporizing its entire upper torso and Bill along with it. Enraged, Andy and Jackson charge at the Codarl and fire a rocket at it. Gaulon blocks it with his barrier and is about to send it back when Sousuke jumps in front of him. Gaulon calls him Kashim, which surprises the Shadow’s pilot. Both Gaulon and Sousuke wonder if the latter can activate the Lambda Driver, and Sousuke manages to do it. The rocket is suspended between their barriers and eventually the pressure causes it to explode. The team manages to escape with the warhead, and a furious Gaulon attempts to send a message to headquarters from his immobile Codarl. The Shadow’s pilot repeats Kashim’s name. The team has placed Batiste in the second truck and are dragging it with their M9s. Gray says that they must get as far away as possible and Jackson cries over the loss of Bill.

 

Commentary

 

Am I the only one who thinks Mithril’s intelligence division is full of morons? Despite knowing full well that no ordinary arm slave can stand up to a Lambda Driver-equipped one, they still send Sousuke tagging along with a group of unprepared and arrogant hot shots who predictably get their asses handed to them. Even crazier is Gaulon surviving the destruction of his Codarl with apparently nothing but a facial scar and even gets the Codarl rebuilt. The only bit of development we get is Sousuke’s former name and the fact that the Shadow’s pilot seems to know him. This’ll probably be the same person from Sousuke’s flashback, but even that can’t redeem this otherwise mediocre episode.

 

Overall Rating

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2.5 out of 5 stars
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Full Metal Panic Episode 15 Full Metal Panic Episode 15

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Buy the collection (eps 1-24) on Blu-ray/DVD from Amazon

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