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Phase 44: Spiral of Encounters

 

Review by Chris Guanche

August 13, 2003

 

Summary

 

As the missiles approach, Kira goes into SEED mode and fires the Freedom Gundam's cannons to destroy them. However, he is caught off guard and is hit on his back by Clotho's hammer. He is then attacked by Orga, and Clotho transforms the Raider Gundam and slams into him. Athrun dodges Shani's attacks and tosses his beam boomerang, which causes minor damage. He pulls out his double-sided beam saber and destroys Shani's scythe. Orga fires his chest cannon at Kira, and Athrun goes into SEED mode and blocks the attack with his beam. He then pushes the beam towards Orga and causes an explosion which damages the Calamity Gundam. Azrael asks Natarle what she's doing and tells her to keep attacking. The Archangel then suddenly appears next to the Dominion and fires. Mu and Dearka fly into the colony past the Eternal, and Andy asks what's going on. Dearka says that Mu thinks ZAFT is on the other side of Mendel, so they're going to investigate. Lacus asks Andy to launch the Eternal as soon as it's ready. As Mu and Dearka fly into Mendel's interior, he and Rau both sense each other's presence. Yzak then is shocked to see the Launcher Strike and Buster Gundam approaching. Rau sees that Mu is the new pilot of the Strike Gundam and attacks, and Yzak attacks the Buster Gundam, not knowing that Dearka is still the pilot. Rau dodges all of Mu's attacks, and Mu realizes that the Launcher equipment is no good in a close combat battle. Kira and Athrun dodge Orga's shots, and Shani jumps in and fires wildly at everyone with his arcing beams. Nearby, Asagi finally finishes cutting the obstructive cable, which sets the Kusanagi free. Cagalli orders Kisaka to attack the Dominion while the M1 Astrays fight off the Strike Daggers. Yzak pulls out his beam saber and attacks at close range, forcing Dearka to be on the defensive. Rau says he is glad to be fighting Mu in such a manner. With both the Archangel and Kusanagi attacking, Natarle decides to retreat and fires the signal flare. Shani keeps attacking, and Orga blocks him and reminds him they have to leave. Kira tells Athrun he thinks those Gundam pilots aren't regular soldiers and aren't Naturals.

 

Mu continues to attack Rau, but Rau easily dodges. Miriallia tries to contact Dearka and Mu, but there's too much interference in the colony. Yzak fires missiles at Dearka, but Dearka destroys them and contacts Yzak. At the port, Kira says he will go help Mu and Dearka while everyone else works on repairs. Athrun offers to go with him, but Kira asks him to stay behind because the Dominion is still nearby. Kira flies into the interior of Mendel and searches for Mu and Dearka. Yzak says he's glad that Dearka is alive, but he demands to know why he's with the Strike Gundam. Kira flies by and finds them facing off, and Dearka blocks the way when Yzak moves to attack. Dearka tells Kira he will deal with Yzak, and Kira warns him not to let the same happen to them as what happened between him and Athrun. Rau thought Mu had a chance of defeating him, but he says it's true that a child can't surpass his father. Mu ejects the Launcher parts and pulls out his knives, and Rau fires his claw anchors, which blow off the Strike Gundam's right arm. The claw anchors also hit the cockpit and cause an explosion, and a piece of shrapnel hits Mu in his stomach. Rau senses Kira's approach, and Kira blows off the GuAIZ's arm and head and slices off its legs. The GuAIZ crashes, and Rau shoots at Mu as he gets out of the Strike Gundam's cockpit. Rau runs into an abandoned building, and Mu chases after him. Kira lands the Freedom Gundam and goes in after Mu with a gun. Dearka and Yzak get out of their cockpits, and Yzak pulls out a gun, saying he's not naive enough to trust an enemy. Kira runs into the abandoned building and joins Mu in a dark corner. Athrun helps out with the Archangel's repairs, and Asagi reports that three Nazca class ships are on the other side of the colony. Andy wonders who they are, and Murrue says it's Rau because Mu has the mysterious ability to sense him. Rau tells Kira that this is the place he was born, and Mu tells him not to believe what Rau says. They chase Rau into another room, and he shoots at them. Dearka tells Yzak he doesn't remember becoming his enemy, and Yzak calls him a traitor. Dearka thinks of Miriallia and says he can no longer kill Naturals simply because the military orders it. Mu runs into a darkened room and is shot in his right shoulder. Kira joins him, and Rau says he won't kill Kira until he learns the truth. He tosses over a copy of Cagalli's baby picture, followed by an album with a picture of baby Mu and his father, Al Da Flaga.

 

Commentary

 

The cliffhanger from the last episode is pretty easily resolved with Kira simply using his SEED mode to dodge and destroy the missiles. I'm actually surprised that it took him and Athrun so long to use their SEED modes against the new Gundam pilots. In this fast-paced episode, we see a three way battle for most of it, with one portion being the Gundam battle, another the ship-to-ship battle, and the last being Mu and Dearka versus ZAFT. The strange Newtype effect is used again when Rau and Mu sense each other, but also when Rau senses Kira. What exactly is going on in that old genetic facility they're in? Why is there a picture of Kira in there, and why are there pictures of Mu? Finally, Yzak meets with Dearka, but he doesn't trust him. Will he understand that he's fighting for the wrong side, or will he continue to be his stubborn self?

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

4 out of 5 stars
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Gundam SEED Episode 44 Gundam SEED Episode 44
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