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Episode 18: Tell Me the Secrets of This World

 

Review by Scott Richardson

August 7, 2007

 

Summary

 

In the wake of Nia's announcement, the government is flooded with calls from citizens, who seem to be more concerned with the property damage caused by Gurren-Lagann's battle than they do the eminent destruction of the human race. Rossiu has the other members of the Team Dai-Gurren man the phones, partly because of their standing with the citizenry and partly to get them out of the way while he consults the newly activated Bio-Computer, which turns out to be the re-constructed head of Lordgenome complete with all the former tyrant's memories. Meanwhile, Simon flies around desperately searching for Nia, but instead runs into Gimmy and Darry, who inform him that he has been ordered to return to base. Simon refuses and he and Gimmy nearly come to blows before Darry cuts in and reminds Simon that Gurren-Lagann is seen as the hero of the rebellion--if people see it recklessly flying all over the place they may begin to panic. Simon sees the sense in this, and as a compromise, separates from Gurren to continue his search in the must less noticeable Lagann. After visiting Nia's home and several Team Dai-Gurren members fruitlessly, Simon stops in front of a reflecting pool and wonders if the girl in the broadcast could have really been Nia. As if on cue, Nia suddenly appears behind him. 

 

Rossiu informs the bio-computer that the real Lordgenome died seven years ago, but his knowledge was preserved and finally given this form. Rossiu asks the slightly amused head to tell him everything he knows about the Anti-Spirals, humanity, and Spiral Power. Lordgenome explains that Spiral Power is the power of limitless evolution. The Anti-Spirals feared this power and went to war against all Spiral beings. Lordgenome fought in this war as a member of the Spiral Knights, who used Gunmen as their primary weapons of war--Lagann was one of their ultimate weapons. Unfortunately, the Spiral Knights lost the war and were forced to retreat back to their respective homeworlds. Victorious, the Anti-Spirals installed the 'Spiral Existence Extermination System' on every planet with Spiral beings. Lordgenome forced humanity underground where resources were scarce in order to keep the human population at such a low level that they would not set off the Anti-Spiral's system, thus preserving the human race. Meanwhile, Nia emotionlessly tells Simon that the two of them can never coexist--his core drill is a symbol of the Spiral Nemesis, a power which brings destruction throughout the universe. Rossiu angrily asks Lordgenome why he never just explained the situation to everyone, but Lordgenome just smirks and tells him that those with the Spiral instinct will always aim for the sky, regardless of logic. In a parallel conversation, Nia tells Simon that when a population of Spiral beings reaches one million, their civilization will advance at an alarming rate, and will quickly reach a level which could endanger the Anti-Spirals. Simon is unable to accept all this and tells Nia that no matter what the Anti-Spirals throw at them, they can still overcome them as long as they have Gurren-Lagann, and asks Nia to go back to the way she was. Nia coldly informs Simon that she is a messenger of the Anti-Spirals--a biological image system which resides within Spiral genes and awakens along with the Human Extermination System--once this system activates she will never go back to being human. Getting back on topic, Nia informs Simon that three weeks after the Human Extermination System is activated, the moon will leave its orbit and collide with the Earth. Hearing the same thing from Lordgenome, Rossiu nearly begins to panic, worrying that if the public finds out there will be widespread rioting. Unfortunately, Rossiu is soon informed that Nia was broadcasting her conversation with Simon all over the city--everyone knows exactly what's going on now. As Simon begs her not to go, Nia leaves through a portal as two Anti-Spiral machines come through and begin attacking the city. Grapearls are sent out to combat the geometric machines--now referred to as 'Muganns.' Simon quickly locates Gurren and unites with it to form Gurren-Lagann. Darry reminds him that if he fights recklessly the Muganns will explode like they did last time. In a rage, Simon tells him he'll think of something while they fight. The two Mugann almost effortlessly destroy a large number of Grapearls before Simon arrives on the scene. Once again he uses Gurren-Lagann's drill to absorb the Mugann's laser attack and hurls it back at them, destroying them both. Just as before, they break down into small geometric shapes which slowly float down towards the city, but this time, Simon orders Gimmy and Darry to shoot the fragments--detonating them before they reach the ground. The plan works and the government officers celebrate, except for Rossiu who worriedly notes that this method will not work against a large group of enemies. When Simon, Gimmy, and Darry return to the capital building, they are greeted by the sight of a huge number of angry civilians who blame the government for failing to protect them and their homes. Rossiu goes out backed up by a group of soldiers to appeal for peace, but the crowd begins throwing stones at him. Shocked by this display of mob violence, Rossiu prevents the soldiers from retaliating and retreats back inside. Sobered by this, Rossiu predicts that the rioting will get worse until they find someone to take the blame for all of this. On the roof, Simon attempts to come to terms with recent events when he is suddenly joined by Rossiu and a large number of well-armed soldiers. To Simon's shock, Rossiu informs him that he is under arrest. 

 

Commentary

 

This episode was an info-dump more than anything else--a necessary one, though--finally we learn Lordgenome's true reasons for locking humanity underground and discover that, at one point, he was a hero (I would watch a spin-off show about Lordgenome and the Spiral Knights in a heartbeat). We also learn the full scope of the 'Human Extermination System' and the reason for Nia's sudden personality change. Has Simon really lost her forever? To make matters worse, Rossiu arrests Simon at the end of the episode, meaning that Simon has been betrayed by the two people closest to him (as well as the general population of the civilization which he helped build). At the very least, though, Rossiu doesn't seem to have completely lost his humanity--he never seems particularly happy about what he decides needs to be done. It will be interesting to see how the members of the Team Dai-Gurren react to all this.

 

Overall Rating

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3.5 out of 5 stars
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Gurren-Lagann Episode 18 Gurren-Lagann Episode 18

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