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Episode 12: Last Resort

 

Review by Chris Guanche

September 15, 2000

 

Summary

 

On December 24, a Musai battleship is attacked by the Federation Forces. A Zeon soldier loads several kids onto a Komusai shuttle and tells them they have an important mission to fulfill. After the Komusai is launched, the Musai and its Gelgoogs are destroyed. The Komusai escapes safely and heads for Asia. In UC 0080, the 08th M.S. Team has been disbanded as part of the post-war reorganization plan. Michel has retired from the service and joins Kiki in a search for Shiro and Aina. Michel drinks heavily, and Kiki tears up a picture of a married B.B. that he is obsessing over. As they travel down the river they discover the wreckage of the Komusai. Inside, Kiki finds a helmet full of dog tags and disks belonging to the Flanagan Institute. A storm passes over, and Kiki and Michel are forced to spend the night inside the Komusai. They wake up tied up as hostages of several children on a raft. The children take them to a home where several older children watch over a bandaged girl. The children seem to be lead by a young black boy in a Zeon uniform. Michel and Kiki try to explain that the war is over and the Zeon lost, but the boy doesn't believe them. He believes that another war will begin, and they will be used then. Kiki and Michel are confined, and Michel begs for his alcohol. He realizes that the kids are on the run from something and wonders if they killed the Zeon crew to escape or came and killed Shiro. Kiki thinks that's nonsense and reminds him that Shiro is alive. When their guard leaves, Kiki uses a stick from a fire to burn their restraints off. They find the children out in the field burying the bandaged girl. Kiki intervenes and has them give the girl a proper funeral. She asks who the girl was and is shocked to hear that the her name is Aina. She shows the black boy a picture of Shiro, and he says that Shiro is dead and buried in the cemetery. Michel goes off the handle and threatens to kill the black boy. Another boy bonks him on the head with a shovel and knocks him out.

 

Michel wakes up and finds one of the twin girls watching him. He explores the house and sees Kiki playing with the kids. Later, Kiki asks the black boy who the dead girl really is because she was too young to be Aina. He says Shiro is dead, and Kiki wonders if the black boy killed him. He says the girl didn't have a real name and was named Aina. On a rainy night, Kiki and Michel go out to dig up the grave and determine if Shiro is in there. Michel is creeped out and doesn't want to do it, but Kiki wants to know the truth. As they start digging, the kids come and tell them that the grave is empty. The black boy has a dream and remembers being experimented on by Dr. Flanagan. The kids explain that they were part of the Flanagan Institute and that all their memories were erased. They didn't know what to do until they met the real Shiro and Aina, who taught them how to survive. They also gave the kids names and named them after everyone in the 08th M.S. Team. The kids offer to give the names back, and the black boy arrives and starts yelling. He says his name is Shiro Amada and that no one can take that away from him. He attacks Kiki with his spear, but she breaks it in half. He then starts throwing rocks at her and says he doesn't have to give back his name. She asks why she would want to do that and gives him a hug. Shiro breaks down in tears, and Kiki tells him he's been a good commander. He explains that the real Shiro and Aina dug the graves and buried their clothes there so they could be reborn. The next morning, Kiki and Michel find that the kids are gone. Michel wonders if they were ghosts, and Kiki thinks they are just on a search for something. Following the directions from Shiro, they head north into a beautiful forest. They see a log cabin and find one-legged Shiro sitting at a table with an extremely pregnant Aina. Michel runs over to Shiro to talk to him, and Kiki cries.

 

Commentary

 

Well, that's not the ending I or anyone else was expecting. I thought there would be an epic battle or something, but we get that with episode 11. Something interesting to mention is that this is the only time we get to see Earth immediately after the war, as this episode takes place in early UC 0080. We never get to see the rest of the members of the 08th M.S. Team. What ever happened to Karen, Eledore and Sanders? Second, the whole purpose of the children is never really explained. The only hints we get are several mentions of the Flanagan Institute, which was the Zeon Newtype research facility during the war. From the way the children act, perhaps they were very early Cyber Newtypes. Finally, we only get to see Shiro and Aina at the very end of the episode. On top of that, neither of them has any dialogue! While the episode works well enough on its own, it is not good enough to serve as a finale for the series. There are plenty of questions left unanswered, and the episode raises some more questions without answering them. It's a shame this great series didn't last longer and didn't have a more appropriate ending.

 

Overall Rating

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3 out of 5 stars
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Gundam 08th MS Team Episode 12 Gundam 08th MS Team Episode 12

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Buy the collection (eps 1-12, movie, short) on Blu-ray or DVD from Amazon
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