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Episode 22: Big Ring Absolute Defense Line

 

Review by Chris Guanche

March 22, 2012

 

Summary

 

Zeheart's image is projected into space as a large hologram while he addresses the fleet and announces that they will liberate Earth from a ring of demons. Zeheart tells Medel and Daz that this is the beginning of a tale woven by Ezelcant. He then recalls a time on Second Moon as a child when Ezelcant told him that even when the times change, people will always be fools fighting pointless battles. He wanted to break that chain, which is why he created his plan. He said they would take back Earth and create a world for themselves, and when he touched Zeheart on the head, it triggered an X-Rounder reaction and gave Zeheart a vision of a green Earth. Ezelcant said his vision was for a world without war and asked Zeheart for his help. Big Ring prepares for battle as the Vagan fleet approaches. Flit tells everyone they have to carry out their mission and defend Earth even if they're the last ones left. Algreus tells Flit that they're at a disadvantage, so it's a chance for tactics to shine. Several Darwin class cruisers launch from Big Ring's dock, followed by the Diva and the Amadeus. Millais orders the Woolf team to launch, and Romary thinks about Asemu and Zeheart. Zeheart orders his forces to attack, and a squad of X-Rounders called the Magicians Eight launch in their Zedas M units. Medel is curious to see how they perform, and Zeheart comments that Ezelcant said X-Rounders aren't the evolution of humanity, but rather a regression of people returning to being mindless beasts. The Vagan fleet opens fire, and Asemu vows that he'll protect everyone and survive. He destroys a Baqto and Gafran, while Arisa shoots down a Dorado. A Dorado rushes in to attack Max, but Woolf destroys it and berates Max for not paying attention. Obright calls Woolf and directs his attention to the area where the Magicians Eight are tearing their forces apart. Millais is informed of the situation and wonders what's going on. Flit examines the data and sees that the Magicians Eight are X-Rounders. Algreus and Flit start issuing direct combat orders to the units fighting the Magicians Eight to counter the X-Rounder powers with tactics. The AGE-2 Normal engages several Dorados and destroys them, and Woolf tells Asemu that he's more than a match for an X-Rounder. The Magicians Eight dodge the G-Bouncer's attacks, and Woolf realizes that the pilots are X-Rounders. Algreus informs Flit that the Diva's suits have engaged the Magicians Eight, and Flit orders other units to support them. A Zedas M attacks Asemu, but it's forced to fall back when several Adeles and Shaldoll Customs arrive to provide support. With their combined power, they're able to force the Magicians Eight to fall back. Medel can't believe that the Magicians Eight have been contained, and Zeheart believes it's the work of Flit. Zeheart decides to launch over Medel's objections, and Desil says he's going to fight too. Zeheart then launches in the Zeydra, followed by Desil in the Khronos.

 

Asemu and Woolf come under attack from Zeheart and Desil. Zeheart fires at Asemu, but Woolf blocks the shot and is then kicked away by Desil. A Baqto closes in on panicking Max, but Obright's Genoace II destroys it. Asemu and Zeheart fight at close range with beam sabers, and Desil dodges Woolf's attacks while destroying several Shaldoll Customs. Algreus points out the new enemies to Flit, and Flit gets up to leave. Desil slices off one of the G-Bouncer's arms, and Zeheart rushes in to attack Asemu. His sword is destroyed by a shot from the modified AGE-1 Flat, piloted by Flit. Flit attacks both Zeheart and Desil and tells Asemu and Woolf to fire at him on his mark. Asemu says he can't do that, but Woolf tells him that Flit has a plan. They fire on Flit's signal, and he moves out of the way just as Desil rushes in, causing him to be hit and lose a leg. Zeheart attacks Flit with his beam saber, but Flit kicks him away, and Asemu wonders if this is Flit's X-Rounder power. Desil realizes that Flit is in the AGE-1 Flat and tells Zeheart not to interfere. Desil attacks Flit and says that he's been longing to see him, which makes Flit think of Yurin. He vows that he'll win the fight, and Desil says the humiliation he suffered feels like it was yesterday. As the two fight, Zeheart knocks Asemu away and hits the G-Bouncer in the shoulder. Obright calls Woolf and says they need help, and Asemu tells Woolf he's ok on his own. Zeheart tells Asemu he won't hesitate this time, and Asemu says the same goes for him. Woolf falls back to help Obright while Algreus continues to issue combat orders. Asemu attacks Zeheart and says things would've been different between them if not for the war. He says they shouldn't fight just because they were born on Earth and Mars, but Zeheart counters that Asemu can't understand because he only fights for himself to catch up to Flit. Asemu says that he's fighting to protect Earth from the Vagans, but he then gets shot in the back by Desil. While Flit is distracted, Desil hits the AGE-1 Flat in the shoulder and tells Flit to focus on their battle. Desil then comes under fire from a large number of Adeles, Shaldoll Customs and Genoace IIs. Flit then rushes in and slices off the Khronos' left arm and leg. Zeheart tells Asemu that he's not fighting because he's a Vagan, but rather for something he'd sacrifice his life to accomplish. Asemu asks what that is, but Zeheart tells him he'd never understand. A Fa Bose is destroyed, and Medel tells Zeheart that they have to retreat. Flit tells Desil that he'll defeat him any way that he can, and Zeheart grabs the damaged Khronos and escapes. Desil demands to be let go, but Zeheart tells him it's over and the operation is a failure. Zeheart comments that he underestimated the strength of the EFF and Flit. As the Vagan fleet retreats, the EFF pilots fire their rifles and shout in celebration. Back on Big Ring, the Diva's mobile suit team salutes Flit. He tells Asemu that he could've shot down four more suits if he'd moved more efficiently. Asemu wonders to himself why Flit can't understand his feelings.

 

Commentary

 

This episode brings us the biggest battle in the series to date. Even the concluding battle from the first generation wasn't as big, as it was Grodek's small fleet against a comparatively small Vagan force. This episode sheds some light on Zeheart's motives with his childhood flashback with Ezelcant. We still don't know what his plan is, but whatever it is, Zeheart is devoted to it. I wonder what Ezelcant's true identity is, since in every appearance up to now we've never seen his entire face. It's also interesting that Ezelcant claims X-Rounder abilities to be a regression rather than an evolution. I wonder if there's any truth to those words, or if they're just propaganda. The Vagans unleash an X-Rounder corps called the Magicians Eight, which sounds more like a guild from Fairy Tail than a mobile suit team. They perform quite well, but it's interesting to see Flit and Algreus use coordinated tactics to compensate for pilot ability. This episode features two rematches: one between Asemu and Zeheart, along with the long-awaited fight between Flit and Desil as adults. It's a testament to Flit's supreme skills as an X-Rounder that even with the antique AGE-1 Flat he can take down Desil's brand new Khronos. Their duel is the highlight of this episode and easily overshadows the fight between Asemu and Zeheart. While Flit's comment to Asemu at the end is a bit cold, he does have a point. Asemu was distracted during the battle, and he's focusing too much on trying to prove that his motives aren't selfish. How this will factor into future battles with Zeheart remains to be seen.

 

Overall Rating

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4 out of 5 stars
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Gundam AGE Episode 22 Gundam AGE Episode 22
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