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Episode 17: Queen of the Empire

 

Review by Chris Guanche

May 9, 2002

 

Summary

 

General Mutterma Sugan, the commander of the Zanscare Empire's space fleet, gives a propaganda speech. He says the Zanscare will fight as long as necessary to spread the "Maria ideals" and bring her "maternal heart" to all people. The crew of the Reineforce watches this speech, as does Uso and the others on Hiland. At Side 2, Prime Minister Fonse Kagatie and Duker (a Gatie Party member) meet with Queen Maria Pia Armonia. Kagatie suggests that the queen should follow the guidelines of Mutterma's speech, and Maria says she wants to hear Duker's report. Duker apologizes for his repeated failures on Earth and begins his report. She says she is against the guillotine and fighting, but Duker says it is necessary. He shows her specs of the new Motorad combat units that Kagatie designed, and he says they will strike terror in the enemy. He says that for Maria to understand he will have to give her a report on Cronicle's battle record on Earth. Duker explains to Maria about Cronicle's initial encounter with Uso and how he lost the Shokew. He then talks about the successful destruction of the special living area of Woowig, and Maria asks if that was necessary. He says that they had no choice because the League Militaire built their secret factory in old subways beneath the city. He believes that since they gave the citizens time to escape that no one was hurt. Maria asks if this is true, and Kagatie says it is. Duker then goes on to explain Cronicle and Sabat's fights with the Shokew under Uso's control. He says that since Cronicle got the Shokew back they were able to study it and learn a lot from it for future mobile suit development. He attributes Cronicle's failure to not being adjusted to Earth's gravity. Maria sees that her brother is growing up to be a pilot.

 

Duker says that Cronicle discovered the League Militaire's mobile suit factory at Kolin on the outskirts of Woowig. He explains Cronicle's encounter with the Victory Gundam and says he was the first to fight it. Maria says she heard the Victory Gundam's pilot is a boy, and Kagatie says the League Militaire are extremists who would do anything for their fight. Maria says that space is a violent place and she plans to unite all the colonies to end the chaos. Kagatie says that is a noble idea, but that they have been betrayed by the Federation. Duker explains that while testing his Galicson at Becheyne the League Militaire met with the Federation. He says the Federation used the planes of PCST, which is supposed to be neutral. Maria asks if they rejected the Empire's offer, and Kagatie says the PCST sold them out. Duker explains the battle and Becheyne and says that the League Militaire made Arti Gibraltar violate its neutrality as well. He explains that Cronicle and Fuala were negotiating with Arti Gibraltar to stay neutral, but they had already decided to transport League Militaire mobile suits. He says they started a battle to defend Arti Gibraltar from the League Militaire and that Cronicle jumped onto a shuttle to investigate it. He reports that the Victory Gundam was loaded onto a shuttle and is now in space. Maria worries about Uso, and Kagatie says they cannot allow him to because the weapon of the extremists. Duker shows Maria video of the Reineforce taking off from Arti Gibraltar and says the Federation has betrayed them. Kagatie says that Maria must speak on the matter, and a platform takes her before the Gatie Party and other Zanscare officers. The people welcome her with chants of "Zanscare! Maria!" She welcomes her people who fight in the tiny cockpits of mobile suits. She says that to spread her ideals everyone must trust their lives over to her. Mutterma follows up and says that a battle will soon begin. The old men on the Reineforce say that the speech makes them look like monsters. At Hiland, Uso watches Maria's speech and sees that this is the face of the enemy.

 

Commentary

 

Though this may at first seem like a clip show, it really isn't. For a change, this episode focuses on the mysterious Zanscare leadership that up until now has remained faceless. We finally get to see Maria Pia Armonia, who is the Queen of the Zanscare and Cronicle's sister. While some were probably expecting her to be like Kycilia Zabi or Haman Karn, she is actually a gentle and quiet person. It appears that she is simply a figurehead that has no power. Kagatie and Duker completely lie to her about the destruction of Woowig, and she believes them. They also lie about what happened at Arti Gibraltar, and she believes that as well. And while she is opposed to the guillotine and mobile suit battles, they still occur regardless. Kagatie is a devious old man, and he seems to be the real power. Here we see that Duker is also a member of the Gatie Party and not just some motorcycle nut. Now that this episode has focused on the Zanscare, it's probably back to Uso in the next episode.

 

Overall Rating

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3.5 out of 5 stars
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