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Episode 2: Reflections in a Brown Eye

 

Review by Chris Guanche

June 2, 2000

 

Summary

 

Al takes pictures of the damaged Zaku and sees the pilot pointing a gun at him. He tells the pilot, Bernard Wiseman, that he got shot down badly. Bernie becomes angry and says he doesn't want to talk to a stupid kid. Al asks Bernie if he can look at the gun, and Bernie refuses. Bernie sees Al's camera and grabs it to examine the pictures. He sees pictures of himself, Chris, and the cargo container. Al jumps Bernie and knocks him down to get the camera back. He bites his hand and grabs the camera back. Al pauses when he sees Bernie's rank badge and seems to be fascinated with it. Bernie offers to give Al the rank badge in exchange for the camera, and Al agrees. Bernie takes the camera and only removes the disk before giving it back to Al. Another Zaku lands to pick up Bernie, and he tells Al to keep their meeting a secret. Al watches rescue teams work on the areas that were damaged during the attack, and Telcott and Chay tell him school is canceled for the morning. At lunch, Chay sees Dorothy and rubs in the fact that the Federation does have mobile suits. Another kid announces that classes for the rest of the day have been canceled, and Al goes him. He plays soldier with his rank badge in his room. At the Zeon lunar base Granada, the remaining members of the Cyclops Team meet with Colonel Killing. He shows them the pictures Bernie brought back and says it is the container they were chasing in the Arctic. Killing says they have a chance to redeem their failure, and Steiner reminds him that he suggested to Killing sending more than one team. Killing tells them they have to capture or destroy the container, which Steiner believes is a new Gundam for Newtypes. Killing tells them he's assigned them a top pilot and dismisses them. Bernie walks through the base, and a soldier tells him he'll probably pay dearly for losing a Zaku on his first mission. Bernie reports to Steiner, and he shows what a rookie he is. Steiner tells him about Operation Rubicon, which involves them infiltrating Libot in a civilian shuttle with the new mobile suit Kampfer to capture what the Federation is hiding. Bernie is worried about getting shot down by friendly fire, and Steiner tells him he doesn't plan on getting shot down like an idiot. He gives Bernie a new special forces rank badge and tells him the mission will begin at 23:00 hours.

 

At school, Al meets with his teacher and his told his bad grades must improve. She threatens that if he doesn't do better that she'll tell a counselor and his mother. Al tells Telcott and Chay that his mother will probably ground him forever if she hears about how bad his grades are. Al eats at home with his mother, and she asks him if he's having any trouble at school. Al goes to bed and thinks about the Zaku that Bernie flew away in. He crawls out of his window and sneaks down into his yard. Chris sees him, and he asks her not to tell his mother that he's sneaking out of the house. She agrees, and Al runs off to the site where Bernie's Zaku crashed. He sees that the weapons have been removed, and he accidentally falls inside the cockpit. It activates, and he looks at stuff before falling asleep. At Granada, Bernie gets inside the civilian shuttle, and a corpse is brought in as his copilot. Other soldiers shoot a bazooka at the corpse's head to make the shuttle seem authentically damaged. As the shuttle launches, the Zeon begin broadcasting Minovsky particles. Gelgoog Jagers and Zakus launch from Granada and attack the GM Command Space types stationed around Libot. During the battle, Bernie pilots the shuttle through the mess and asks for permission to land. He is given clearance and is allowed to enter Libot. He tells a port officer he is shocked that the Riah Republic is allowing battles to occur within Side 6's neutral perimeter. The officer asks Bernie for his license and shipping credentials, but Bernie only has a license. The officer says they will have to search the shuttle, and Bernie pleads with him not to do that over a simple paper. The officer asks Bernie if he's hiding something, and Steiner arrives dressed as a worker. He presents the shipping credentials and says it was a mistake. The officer still wants to do a search, but Steiner puts on a hammy act about how his company will go bankrupt. Al wakes up and runs back towards his house. He runs into the street and is nearly run over by Bernie's truck. As Bernie and the others drive away, Al runs after them. He catches up to them and jumps onto Garcia's truck when it stops at a red light.

 

Commentary

 

Another solid episode for this series. There are some important developments here. In this episode, we see Al's childish fascination with war, which is a big setup for what he discovers at the end of the series. Bernie is no Zeon ace like Char or the Cyclops Team, but is instead a rookie grunt who gets shot down on his first time out. He's also in way over his head with the Cyclops Team. There seems to be some dissension on the Zeon side, as Steiner obviously doesn't get along with Colonel Killing. It seems that Killing wanted Steiner's Arctic mission to fail, and he seems to want the same to happen here with Operation Rubicon. Why else would he purposefully assign a green rookie like Bernie to an elite special forces unit like the Cyclops Team?

 

Overall Rating

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3.5 out of 5 stars
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