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Phase 18: Payback

 

Review by Chris Guanche

April 24, 2003

 

Summary

 

The residents of Tassil watch in horror as the BuCUEs continue to destroy the town. DaCosta reports to Andy that there haven't been any casualties on either side so far. Andy tells him to have the BuCUEs destroy any food, fuel or weapons caches hidden in the caves behind the town. A BuCUE pilot warns the citizens to get out of the way before he attacks the caves. Andy then orders his men to pull out because he doesn't want to fight the rebels when they return. At the rebel camp, Sahib has half of his men scramble and head for the city in their jeeps. Cagalli and Kisaka get onto a jeep with Ahmed and head for Tassil. Murrue asks Mu for his opinion, and he says he's never heard of Andy being a cruel man. Murrue asks him to fly to Tassil in the Sky Grasper since it's the fastest vehicle they have. She tells him she will be sending out the doctor in a buggy. Kira and Flay leave, and Sai calls her an idiot for running off. Mu launches in the Sky Grasper, and Kira sits in the Strike Gundam on standby. Murrue sends out Natarle with several buggies to provide humanitarian aid to the civilians. Mu flies over the town and fears the worst until he finds all the civilians outside the town. He also reports to Murrue that Andy's forces have withdrawn. Sahib arrives and begins asking people to treat the wounded. He sees his young son Yaru with chief Shamsedin, who explains that no one was killed. Sahib can't believe that there weren't any casualties, and Shamsedin explains they were given a warning before the attack. Mu says that Andy must have been kind to warn them before attacking. Cagalli runs over to him and yells about how Andy is a coward for attacking the city. Mu points out that Andy probably doesn't want to fight them, and that the attack was probably punishment for what they did before. Mu then insults Andy to quell Cagalli's anger and finds many people angrily looking at him. Several groups of men want to chase after Andy's forces, but Sahib says they should concentrate on helping their families. They leave anyway, and he chases after them. He tells Cagalli not to go, but she goes anyway with Ahmed and Kisaka. Mu calls them all hotheads, and Natarle says they'll get slaughtered fighting BuCUEs with their weapons.

 

Mu reports to Murrue that the rebels have decided to go after Andy's forces. She asks him why he didn't stop them, and he says it's because they probably would have turned against him if he tried. Murrue says she can't let them die and orders Kira to launch. Natarle gives her hat and some rations to a crying boy. Suddenly, she is surrounded by a group of children who want food. The Aile pack is loaded onto the Strike Gundam, and Kira launches and follows the rebels. DaCosta asks Andy if they should speed up their pace, but Andy isn't worried because small weapons can't damage BuCUEs. Sahib's jeeps pull up and start firing bazookas at Andy's jeep. DaCosta dodges their fire, and Andy orders the BuCUEs to attack. The BuCUEs roll across the sand and begin knocking away and smashing jeeps. Ahmed pulls in under one BuCUE, and Kisaka and Cagalli fire their bazookas at its underbelly. The BuCUE moves to kick the jeep, and only Kisaka and Cagalli jump out before it attacks. Kira arrives at the battle and fires his beam rifle at the BuCUEs, but he finds it is misaligned. He attacks one of the BuCUEs and blows off its missile launcher. Nearby, Ahmed dies in Cagalli's arms. As Kira tries to calculate the abilities of the remaining BuCUEs, Andy switches places with a pilot named Kirkwood. He has all three BuCUEs attack Kira in a delta formation. He knows that enough hits from a conventional warhead will overpower the Phase Shift armor, and he also knows that the beam rifle sucks power out of the Aile Strike's battery. As the BuCUEs continue to attack Kira, he suddenly goes into SEED mode and throws his shield at one of them and destroys another with his beam rifle. Andy tries to attack, and Kira uses his beam saber to slice off a part of the BuCUE. With things no longer in his favor, Andy orders his forces to retreat. After the battle, Kira gets out of the Aile Strike and finds all the rebels standing around Ahmed's body. He asks Cagalli what they are doing and says it's foolish to die in the desert for nothing. She calls him a bastard and says everyone fought bravely, pointing to Ahmed's body. Kira slaps her and asks her what she thinks they can possibly protect with only their feelings.

 

Commentary

 

As expected, this is an action episode, following an alleged character development episode last time. The attack on Tassil continues here, and it's surprising that no civilians died. Mu was correct in his assessment of Andy's attack, but the rebels were too emotional and hotheaded to see that. Especially Cagalli. Natarle shows some actual humanity in that scene with the kid, which is quite a contrast to the way she usually acts. Mu also finds himself in an humorously odd situation with a bunch of angry villagers. I'm getting a bit annoyed by this SEED mode that Kira has. He's not the best pilot in the world, but now in quite a few battles he sees this SEED in his mind and instantly becomes an expert pilot. It's quite cliche and annoying if repeated often. Also, Cagalli's friend Ahmed dies here, but since he only appeared in one other episode before this, his death really means nothing because he wasn't developed enough to care about.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

3 out of 5 stars
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Gundam SEED Episode 18 Gundam SEED Episode 18
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