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Episode 4: Over the River and Through the Woods

 

Review by Chris Guanche

June 3, 2000

 

Summary

 

Al quickly hides on a pipe as the Federation Forces soldiers walk by. He sneaks through the conduit back to Bernie and tells him he got pictures of a Federation mobile suit. Bernie says they could have been caught, but he is glad they got the pictures and figures that Steiner will love it. They print the pictures, and Bernie sees it's not a GM. He reports back to the warehouse, and Garcia punches him for being stupid enough to take that risk. Steiner tells him to take Al home and to never pull a stupid stunt like that again. Bernie drops Al at Chris' house and talks to her a bit. The next day, Al draws a Zaku in school, and Telcott and Chay tell him the Zeon are enemies and he's scum for drawing a Zeon suit instead of a Federation one. Al and Bernie talk about beating the Gundam, and Bernie asks Al if Chris said anything about him. Garcia goes to a bar and speaks to bartender Charlie, who's a Zeon spy. Charlie gives Garcia plans for the Federation base but says they aren't reliable because the Feddies have remodeled the base. Misha gets hardware from a store for the Kampfer. The next day, Steiner meets with Charlie in a park to get the Federation Forces uniforms. Charlie tells Steiner he's a decoy and should escape. Steiner knows he's a decoy because he was assigned a rookie and dropped into Libot with no escape route. They both realize that the war will end soon and that Zeon will lose. Back at the warehouse, the team discusses the plan of attack. Misha will pilot the Kampfer to create a distraction, while Steiner, Bernie, and Garcia infiltrate the base and steal the Gundam. After that a bomb will blow a hole in the colony wall so they can escape. The operation will commence the next day. As Bernie prepares his equipment, Garcia tells him to make sure he doesn't die during the mission. Al calls and tells Bernie that tomorrow Chris is letting him visit the base. Bernie tells him not to go, but Al doesn't listen. With everything ready to go, Steiner and Misha have a drink with the morbid toast "to those who will die."

 

The next day Steiner, Bernie and Garcia cut their way through the Colony Corporation tunnels to infiltrate the Federation base. Al arrives at the base to meet with a scientist named Dick Lumunba. A reporter interviews Lumunba and asks him about rumors that their facility is taking part in military research. He denies any such rumors that his research has to do with mobile suits. Al arrives and Lumunba shows him his research on manipulator arms. Al asks if mobile suits are useful, and Lumunba says they are a necessary evil and were never designed to make anyone happy. Bernie, Garcia and Steiner infiltrate the base with no trouble (aside from Bernie lying badly about Australian weather). Misha begins his run through the city in the Kampfer, and a Federation officer says the Riah Republic is on its own. They send out their small Doraken E mobile suits, but Misha easily destroys them. The Federation Forces ship Gray Phantom enters Libot and sends out Guncannons and GM Snipers to attack him. Misha destroys them as well. A soldier catches on to Bernie's lie, and a gunfight begins. Steiner is shot, and Garcia is wounded while killing several soldiers. Bernie grabs a gun and begins fighting too. Al sneaks in and watches the bloody battle. Garcia is fatally wounded while trying to blow up the Alex, so he sets off his explosives and blows himself up. Al watches him die and is knocked out by the explosion. Chris takes the Alex out of the base as Misha attacks. Misha attacks Chris with a chain mine and destroys the Alex's chobham armor. As he moves in with his beam saber to attack, Chris uses the Alex's arm-mounted Gatling guns to kill Misha. Al runs out of the base and finds Bernie holding a bloody Steiner. Bernie freaks out and pulls his gun on Al.

 

Commentary

 

This is where the series begins to take a more serious turn. After the tragedy and death in this episode, Bernie is no longer a young man, and Al isn't a boy anymore. With the exception of Bernie, the entire Cyclops Team is dead, and the Alex is still intact. The Zeon won't let it stay that way for long. I must say this is probably one of the most violent battles I've ever seen in a Gundam series. The sacrifice of the Cyclops Team serves to show how brutal war is. Steiner might be viewed as a fool for carrying out a mission doomed from the start, but what else can he do? It's not like he can go back to Granada and face Killing again with more failures. Also, despite Bernie's good work so far, in essence he was the one who spelled doom for the team. If he hadn't mistakenly claimed it was winter in Australia, the gunfight never would have happened. If their mission had succeeded, well, the series would have turned out differently to say the least.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Gundam 0080 Episode 4 Gundam 0080 Episode 4

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