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Episode 18: Bloodhounds

 

Review by Chris Guanche

February 19, 2014

 

Summary

 

Luang's Abigorbine comes under sniper fire from Julio Renato's GM Sniper K9. He fires missiles to force Julio onto the ground and attacks with a naginata, but Julio blocks with his rifle. Mario tells him to hold off for 20 seconds, so he fires his pistols at Luang. Suddenly, the Abigorbine's joints explode, leaving Luang exposed and then defeated. Sei and Reiji are shocked to see that Luang lost the match. Fellini discusses the results with Ral and is surprised by the outcome since the Renatos haven't performed remarkably up to this point. Ral thinks they were concealing their claws, but Fellini thinks that's moot since their next opponent is Kawaguchi. Julio is annoyed that all the social media discussion is about Kawaguchi, but Mario notes that everything will change when they beat him. Mao tells Sei and Reiji that he can't mope around and will move forward to become a better builder. He then brags about having a date with Misaki later and leaves. At the mall, Sei tells China about Mao's date and awkwardly starts to ask her out. China recognizes Aila as she almost slobbers over a food display. Reiji then shows up, so the four sit down inside a restaurant together. China asks for her name, so Aila fumbles and answers Aina, which excites Sei due to the connection to The 08th MS Team. China asks Aila if she came to watch the tournament, and she answers that she did. Reiji points out that she had no interest in Gunpla, so she lies that a friend invited her. Reiji questions whether Aila even has friends, which starts an argument that China defuses with sweets. In the hotel, Allan and Yuuki watch the video of Luang's fight to figure out how he lost. Allan can't figure it out and says it's like magic, but Yuuki notes that even magic has a trick to it. Mario tells Julio that they have to give it their all tomorrow, but Julio dismisses the third Kawaguchi as a joke. He then states that they'll show Kawaguchi their war. Reiji and Aila chomp down on sweets until a depressed Mao slithers in. He went to meet Misaki and tried to kiss her right off the bat, so she slapped him and left. Reiji bluntly tells Mao it was his own fault, which makes him cry. The next morning, Sei and Reiji sit down in the spectator space to watch the match. Ral asks China where Rinko is, and he's disappointed to hear she's out shopping since Sei and Reiji aren't fighting.

 

The battle begins in a ruined city, and Yuuki's Kampfer Amazing hides behind a building. Allan points out on a map the three spots where Julio could be hiding to snipe, so Yuuki shoots at those spots to flush him out. Mario tells Julio that the fire is a diversion and deploys the Hound unit from the backpack. China asks what's going on, so Ral explains what Yuuki is doing. Julio fires from his vantage point on a building and destroys Yuuki's sniper rifle. Yuuki jumps into the air, but he gets shot by the Hound and loses one of his weapon containers. He then dodges the Hound and fires rockets at the building to force Julio to the ground. He shoots at Julio, who fires at the surrounding buildings to drop rubble on Yuuki. As he dodges the rubble, Yuuki trips a wire trap and sets off an explosion. He narrowly avoids another trap and an attempt to be boxed in by sacrificing a weapons container to absorb Julio's shot. Allan tells Yuuki to fall back into a ruined stadium, which is what the Renatos want. Mario tells Julio to deploy the Bloodhounds, so a small craft detaches from the Hound. Allan is surprised that the Renatos are using multiple machines. He thinks Yuuki has the advantage in close quarters, but Yuuki believes he was lured into a trap. Small Zeon soldier figures with jet packs fly in and attach explosives to the Kampfer Amazing's joints. China asks what's happening, so Ral explains that the Renatos probably used the same tactic on Luang. Julio moves in to finish Yuuki off, but his rifle gets destroyed by Yuuki. Julio wonders how Yuuki survived, so he explains that they greased the joints when they realized that the Renatos would try to attack those spots. As a result, the bombs slipped off. Yuuki destroys Yuuki's handguns and rushes in with a beam saber, but the GM Sniper K9's performance suddenly jumps. Sei wonders if it's Trans-Am, but Ral correctly deduces that it's the EXAM system. Julio causes damage with his beam saber and tells Yuuki he doesn't deserve the Kawaguchi name. He vows that he'll show the world a real battle, and Yuuki's last container is destroyed. Yuuki falls back and takes more damage from the GM Sniper K9 and Hound before crashing into a fountain. Allan thinks they're going to lose, but Yuuki grabs a Gatling gun out of the container he dropped earlier and mows Julio down. The Hound comes in to attack, but Yuuki destroys it with his rifle, ending the match. Allan thanks Yuuki for winning, but Yuuki is mad at himself for damaging his unit so much. Sei tells Reiji that they have to match Yuuki's level of skill. Baker tells Mashita over the phone that she'll make sure Sei and Reiji lose before he returns. Her plan to make that happen is to have them fight Nils, the Early Genius.

 

Commentary

 

The last episode ended with Luang's surprise defeat, and this one shows how it happened. The sneaky Renatos used a trick based on an obscure Gundam reference where Zeon soldiers attached bombs to the Gundam. That's not the only reference, as there are several others that can be spotted by hardcore fans. The ruined city and stadium is a callback to where Garma Zabi met his fate. The EXAM system refers back to The Blue Destiny, and the fight itself is a Gundam 0080 rematch of sorts. The original Kampfer was brought down by a machine gun, but it redeems itself here using the same. Before the fight, we see Aila make an accidental The 08th MS Team reference by giving her name as Aina. The Renatos kept referring to how they'd show the world their war, but the statement is never explained. Is Argentina some war torn place in this world? Either way, it was good to see Yuuki fight a skilled opponent and use his wits, even though in the end they couldn't match his skills.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

4 out of 5 stars
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Gundam Build Fighters Episode 18 Gundam Build Fighters Episode 18

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