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The Ideon: Be Invoked


Review by Brian Shea

June 16, 2007

 

Summary

 

Cosmo talks with Kitty Kitten on Kyaral. Kitten blames the Solo Ship crew for the Buff Clan attacking her planet. Parkinson, head of the Kyaral Military refuses to provide Bes with supplies. Cosmo gets upset when Kitten says he's an alien just like the Buff Clan. Kitten runs after Cosmo when he leaves and walks with him. Later, Kitten and a group of children run from a Buff Clan attack. Cosmo tells Kitten to get down, but she's caught in a large explosion. Kitten's bloody head flies past Cosmo as he screams "Damn You Buff Clan!!!" On the planet Steckin Star, the Buff Clan forces attack the Ideon. Gije is killed in the fight and the Ideon chops the entire planet in half. Joliver and Tekuno hold back Sheryl from entering the Ideo-Nova cockpit where Gije's corpse is. Sheryl screams about about her sister and Gije dying.

 

Meanwhile aboard the Buff Clan flagship, the Bairal Jin, a soldier reports to Supreme Commander Doba that the Solo Ship has been surrounded in their web. Doba says that no squadron can act on their own. Doba tells Ome Foundation leader Gindoro that they won't need to use the Gando Rowa. Aboard the Solo Ship Karala brings Joliver and the others some food but feels sick in her stomach while pouring coffee. Suddenly the Ideon gauge glows strangely and an odd light envelops Karala. Joliver runs towards her and both vanish from the Solo Ship. The two of them appear on the Bairal Jin by some soldiers. They run through the hallway, chased by the soldiers. Karala thinks the Ide is behind what happened to them. They're caught by a soldier but when he hesitates after recognizing Karala, they take the opportunity to escape using the elevator. Gindoro and Doba realize that it is Karala who has come aboard the ship. Karala tells Joliver she wants to meet with her father. The elevator stops when the soldiers cut the electricity. Doba comes out before them. The Ide projects an image of the Buff Clan's forces to the Solo Ship. Karala tells Doba that the Ide led her here as a messenger. Doba threatens to throw Karala out into space. Bes has Hatari track the location of the Buff Clan's forces. Karala says that the war has increased the amount of meteors falling on their own planet and that they must stop. Doba refuses to go along with it and blames everything on the Solo Ship. Karala says that there is proof that the Earth and Buff Clan can get along since she is pregnant. An angered Doba attacks her with his laser sword but Joliver jumps in the way. Karala grabs a weapon from Joliver and points it at Doba threatening to kill him. Karala and Joliver take the opportunity to escape. Gravitational tremors suddenly appear as the Solo Ship DS Outs near the Bairal Jin. Hatari wants to stop the ship but Bes decides instead to ram into the Bairal Jin. The Ideon immediately launches as a huge Buff Clan force approaches the Solo Ship. Karala and Joliver put on spacesuits and realize that the Solo Ship has come for them. Bes spots Karala and Joliver fleeing from soldiers on the monitor due to a light emanating from Karala. Bes heads to a cannon and kills the soldiers chasing them. Karala and Joliver make it to a small shuttle. The Ideon uses its all missiles attack to decimate the enemy. Joliver tells Karala that she's become stronger. They take off. Bes orders the Ideon to protect Karala and return to the Solo Ship. Karala's shuttle is destroyed by a stray shot seconds before the Ideon was to grab it. Cosmo starts screaming, cursing the Buff Clan for Karala's apparent death. Doba and Gindoro are somehow able to hear his words. Bes is shocked over Karala's death and tells Hatari to retreat. Karala and Joliver suddenly appear unharmed in from of the Ideon, with a glow emanating from Karala. The Ideon grabs them and returns to the Solo Ship, which immediately escapes from the Bairal Jin. Doba orders his forces to pursue the Solo Ship, even if they have to head to the end of the universe.

 

Karala and Joliver make it to the Ideon's cockpit. Bes orders the civilians to prepare for battle as the Solo Ship comes upon an even more massive army of Buff Clan troops. Kasha is unable to open the hatch on the Solo Ship to get the Ideon Gun. Bes wants them to keep the hatch in place since the Solo Ship's barrier is weak. He tells the technicians to hurry up and fix the hatch. Lotta, Rapoh and the children help the injured. Sheryl comes out looking for Lou. Sheryl takes Lou and leaves, saying she's going to research him. Sheryl talks to Lou and gives him some food in her room. Lotta comes to the door with Fard and Ashura and demands that Sheryl give Lou back. Sheryl says she's researching how Lou will help them survive and locks her door. The Ideon and Solo Ship continue to battle the Buff Clan.

 

Doba and Gindoro think they may be wasting too much of their forces and decide that they will use their forces as decoys to lure the solo Ship into the path of a comet. The Ideon and Solo Ship soon approach the range of the comet. Bes gives Cosmo permission to tear open the hatch to get to the Ideon Gun. Harulu watches from her ship and orders one of her officers, Gilbal to surround the Solo Ship and Giant God. The Ideon tears off the hatch and takes the Ideon Gun. In her room, Sheryl puts spacesuits on herself and Lou. Sheryl heads out with Lou. The Ideon aims the Ideon Gun at the comet. Suddenly Sheryl heads outside to the deck of the ship carrying Lou in her hands. Sheryl yells out that she has an innocent child in her hand and that the Ide must respond to protect it. Lou cries out for the baby in Karala. Cosmo and Deck realize that Karala is pregnant. Karala runs off. Sheryl continues to plead for the Ide to respond. Cosmo fires the Ideon Gun towards the comet. The resulting explosion destroys the surrounding Buff Clan force, but the Solo Ship and Ideon are protected by their barrier. Sheryl and Lou are blown off the ship by the force of the blast. Sheryl's helmet shatters, killing her. Sheryl's soul is reunited with Gije. Karala tries to head outside but realizes that Lou is alright. Lou is flown back to the Solo Ship through the power of the Ide. Doba and Gindoro realize that the comet has vanished. Doba orders his forces to retreat, protecting them. Gindoro reminds him about the Ome Foundation's assistance. Doba says they can now defeat Emperor Zou.

 

Meteors start appearing from the point where the comet was destroyed. A massive number of comets strike the Earth, destroying human civilization. The same occurs at the Buff Clan homeworld. The Emperor's palace is struck by one of the meteors. News of the meteors and Zou's death are reported to Doba and Harulu. A soldier reveals that the Solo Ship and Ideon survived. Communication about the destruction of Earth and Earth colonies reaches the bridge of the Solo Ship. Bes wakes up Hatari and tells him to confirm it. The pilots of the Ideon come to. Cosmo wonders what happened to Sheryl and Lou. Karala heads outside, searching for Lou. Harulu orders Gilbal to take over the Solo Ship using hand to hand combat. Doba orders his forces to move forward as well. Multiple Buff Clan ships DS out near the Solo Ship. Hundreds of Buff Clan soldiers heads out on small Jongu crafts. Cosmo tells Deck to be careful since the barrier and Ideon gauge are at low power right now. Cosmo tells Deck and Kasha that he's heading outside to find Karala since she and Lou are the key to the Ide's power. Buff Clan soldiers spot Karala but are fooled by her Buff Clan spacesuit. Cosmo loses track of Karala. Bes tells him to return to the Ideon, which he does. The Ideon gauge is completely blank. Ashura, Lotta and Fard shoot at the oncoming Buff Clan soldiers inside the Solo Ship. Harulu orders more Jongus to head out. Joliver heads to the Ideo-Nova's cockpit to check on the Ideon's engine. Cosmo spots Karala due to light emanating from her abdomen. He tells Deck to flow electricity through the Ideon's hatch to act as a barrier. Cosmo heads out and takes a Jongu while searching for Karala. Karala finds Lou, who is passed out. Harulu spots Karala on the monitor. Karala tries to wake up Lou. Joliver says that the engine overheated and that they should be okay soon. Cosmo finds Karala and Lou. A new Heavy Mobile Mecha, the Zanza Lubu, piloted by Harulu's underlings Kilarul and Torolof arrives and fires at the Solo Ship, waking up Lou. The Ideon gauge starts working again. A red glow emanates from Karala and Lou. The Solo Ship engine activates and it escapes into Null Space. Harulu orders the recovery of the Zanza Lubu so they can head after them.

 

Cosmo thinks Lou's desire to meet Karala's baby and their self defensive instincts is what is protecting them. Bes and Hatari realize that Karala and Lou are the source of the power they have detected on the ship. Cosmo, Karala and Lou reunite with Lotta and the children. Torolof and Kilarul give Harulu a picture of Karala from the battle. They think that Karala is the source of the Ide's power. Harulu is confident that they'll win now since all they have to do is kill Karala and her baby. Bes and Hatari realize that the Solo Ship is still being followed by the Buff Clan due to their large energy output. Doba and Gindoro test the Gando Rowa, which destroys a planet with only 40% of its power. Doba wants to lure the Giant God into the path of the Gando Rowa. Cosmo uses his Jongu to destroy the Buff Clan soldiers in the hall. Hatari and Kasha help kill the remaining soldiers on the ship. Everyone heads to the bridge where Karala is reunited with Bes. Karala reveals to Bes that she is pregnant with his child. Kasha realizes that Joliver and Karala were saved earlier when the Ide was invoked due to Karala's baby. Hatari and Cosmo say that her baby enables them to defend the Solo Ship. Cosmo and Kasha call Karala's baby "Messiah." Kasha volunteers to stay aboard the Solo Ship to protect Karala. Bes is hesitant about leaving the Ideon in Deck's hands but Cosmo says that he'll be okay since the Ide prefers children. Lotta gives Lou some food and gives more to Cosmo to bring to the Ideon. Kasha and Cosmo agree to be more friendly with each other after the battle is over.

 

Harulu's ship departs from Null Space and sends out the Zanza Lubu, accompanying Kilarul and Torolof. Torolof and Kilarul refuse to wear helmets while piloting because it hides their beauty. The three of them laugh about it. The surrounding Buff Clan ships send out more Jongus at the Solo Ship. Cosmo returns to the Ideon and tells Deck to take Kasha's spot. Deck eats his food but gets depressed about dying. Deck arrives on the Ideo-Nova and gives Bento his food. The Ideon heads out with the Ideon Gun to fight the enemy. Harulu decides to charge into it since the Gun will take a while to charge. The Zanza Lubu grabs onto the Ideon. Cosmo argues with Harulu about why they are still fighting. Harulu blames him for Daram's death. The Ideon fires its gun, destroying the Zanza Lubu except for its escape shuttle. The Ideon Gun fires again on the Buff Clan forces. The Zanza Lubu flies into the Solo Ship and Harulu, Torolof and Kilarul run through it looking for Karala. Gilbal leads them towards the bridge where they try sneaking into the forest dome. Lotta spots Torolof and kills her with a bazooka. Harulu runs inside and shoots at Lotta, demanding to know where Karala is. Lotta refuses to tell them where she is and an enraged Kilarul kills her. Karala reveals herself from a nearby tree. Harulu blames Karala for everything that's happened and shoots her in the shoulder. Karala says they have to stop fighting each other but Harulu won't listen to her. Karala tells Harulu she'll kill her and give birth to her child. Karala fires at Harulu but misses. Harulu shoots Karala three times in the face and flees with Kilarul. Ashura screams out over Karala and Lotta's deaths. Harulu and Kilarul return to the escape capsule and depart from the Solo Ship.

 

Cosmo aims towards the Buff Clan's fleet. Kasha tells Cosmo of Karala's death. Aboard the Solo Ship Bes and the others cry over Karala and Lotta's corpses. Rapoh realizes that Karala's baby is still living inside of her due to the Ide. Another glow appears from Karala's abdomen, surrounding the Solo Ship and Ideon. Harulu wonders what the light is. Their escape capsule approaches the Bairal Jin and heads aboard. Doba orders his forces to continue to lead the Solo ship and Giant God into the path of the Gando Rowa. The Ideon fires the Ideon Gun, destroying more of the Buff Clan's forces. Kasha decides to stick with Karala's corpse to protect it and Lou. Kasha talks to Ashura about Messiah and Karala. More Buff Clan ships go down against the Ideon. A seemingly endless supply of enemies continue to attack the Ideon. The Ideon and Solo Ship enter DS Drive to escape from the enemy. Harulu's wounds are tended to on the Bairal Jin. Doba comes to see Harulu. Doba thinks he has justice on his side in this battle. Harulu says how upset she was with Karala for having a child with an alien man. Harulu tells Doba that she's killed Karala. Doba thanks her for killing her honorably but Harulu says she killed Karala out of jealousy due to Daram's death. Harulu asks Doba to give her command of their forces and he consents. Harulu cries, asking Daram to help her.

 

Aboard the Solo Ship bridge, Hatari and Bes hope to find someplace to hide and rest. They find an area between two planets. Kasha tells Cosmo not to look at Karala's corpse but he does anyway. Cosmo starts crying when he sees her. Deck thinks that the Ide failed to protect Karala because it valued Messiah more. Cosmo agrees and realizes that the Ide protects the young because it considers them a pure lifeform worthy of being absorbed into it. Cosmo says that the Earth was destroyed to wipe out those with evil hearts. Kasha asks why the Ide still lets them live. Aboard the Bairal Jin, Gindoro thinks they should return to their Earth and prepare there for another assault. Doba shows Gindoro a picture of their destroyed homeworld, showing him that doing that is now impossible. Gindoro refuses to believe him and thinks that it is the Earthling's homeworld. Doba says he's willing to lend him a battleship if he wants to see it for himself. The two of them argue. Doba says they have to continue fighting because the Ide will wipe out all intelligent life. The Solo Ship makes its way towards the Bairal Jin, but the Bairal Jin enters Null Space, avoiding its attack. Harulu and Kilarul head to the bridge of the Bairal Jin. Harulu orders her forces to continue to lure the Solo Ship towards the Gando Rowa. Harulu tells Kilarul that she won't wear a spacesuit aboard the bridge in order to keep up troop morale. Additional Heavy Mobile Mecha are launched from the Bairal Jin and Buff Clan ships. Bes tells Cosmo to fire into the core of the Buff Clan's troops. Two Buff Clan ships DS out and crash themselves into the Solo Ship. A red light appears in front of the Ideon, which fires, blowing a hole through a nearby planet. Noticing the planet breaking up in front of them, Harulu orders the Bairal Jin to head into Null Space. It narrowly misses the Ideon Gun's blast. Doba argues with Harulu about them entering Null Space. Gindoro complains about being able to head out on a battleship, and Doba tells him to wait until the fighting is over.

 

The Buff Clan sends more Jongus to attack the Ideon. The Ideon sweeps them away with a blast of the Ideon Gun. Bes realizes that the barrier isn't working, even though the Ide's power is going up. The Ide's power radiates to all directions from the center of the ship. Joliver contacts Bes from the Solo Ship and says that the Ide's power is no longer flowing into the Ideon Gun properly. He dies from his wounds suffered earlier. Deck tells Cosmo that they should try firing at the enemy while it's in Null Space since they can detect it's signal. Cosmo does so, and the blast hits the Bairal Jin, killing Harulu and Kilarul. The bottom third of the Bairal Jin blows up. Gindoro continues to complain to Doba, who slaps him. Doba realizes that even though the Ide needs intelligent life to survive, the Buff Clan's burdens and karma means that the Ide will wipe them out in favor of a newer intelligent life form. Gindoro continues to complain to Doba, so he kills him. Doba says he wants the Logo Dau aliens to feel his pain over what happened with his daughters. The Ideon destroys an approaching Gangu Lubu. While fighting the Jongus aboard the Solo Ship, debris strikes Kasha, killing her. While Ashura cries over her death Fard says they have to protect everyone's dead bodies. Rapoh arrives and realizes that Kasha has died.

 

The Ideon continues to destroy all approaching crafts. Hatari realizes that the Buff Clan is focusing only on the portside of the ship (during this scene you can see Tomino himself in a spacesuit aboard the bridge). Rapoh brings the children to the bridge and works on a barricade to protect them and the others. Bes tells Cosmo that Kasha has died. Cosmo cries over her death as Deck detects a huge object, the Gando Rowa, before them. The Bairal Jin flies in next to it. An upset Cosmo continues to dominate the Buff Clan's Zanza Lubus using the Ideon. The Ideon uses the Ideon Swords to destroy the nearby Buff Clan crafts. Bes detects a strange light aboard the monitor on the bridge, the firing Gando Rowa. Doba is positive that the Solo Ship and Ideon will be destroyed by the Gando Rowa's blast, even if half his forces are wiped out. Gindoro's residual consciousness appears due to the Ide and says he was wrong for doubting Doba. The Gando Rowa's blast strikes the Solo Ship and Ideon, heavily damaging the Solo Ship. Bento is killed during the blast. Karala's naked corpse floats out of the forest dome and vanishes in a flash of light. Doba tells his soldiers to confirm the destruction of the Giant God and assemble before him for an important announcement about their homeworld.

 

A red light continues to appear before the Ideon. The Solo Ship makes its way towards there. The remaining crew fights the Buff Clan soldiers on the bridge. When distracted by a Buff Clan soldier's body, Ashura's head is vaporized by a blast. Hatari is shot in the head. The Solo Ship DS Outs right in front of the Gando Rowa. Fard and Rapoh are killed by the soldiers on the bridge. Bes is shot, but manages to take two soldiers out. Doba is shocked to realize that the Solo Ship and Ideon weren't destroyed. Doba is able to hear Cosmo's words and vice versa. Cosmo says the Ide is guiding them to this conclusion in order to wipe out their impure species. When Bes looks at Lou and Fard he is shot in the back of the head. The Ideon heads after the Bairal Jin in order to take out Doba. Doba orders the Gando Rowa to fire again. The Buff Clan soldiers there argue with him, not wanting to sacrifice their lives. Doba says that the Giant God is heading towards him because he holds the karma of the Buff Clan. The soldiers kill Doba, but the Ideon still punches through the Bairal Jin seconds later anyway. The Gando Rowa starts glowing, about to fire. The Ideon backs up and fires upon it with the Ideon swords. A Zanza Lubu crashes itself into the Ideon just as the Gando Rowa fires. The blast completely destroys the Solo Ship, as well as the Ideon, killing Bes, Tekuno, Deck and Cosmo. The Ideon's eye glows as it is destroyed. Its power too great, the Gando Rowa blows up as well. The huge blast destroys three nearby planets and grows larger and larger...

 

The naked spirits of the Buff Clan and humanity appear flying through space. Damido and Mayaya look for the light of Messiah. As does Guhaba Geba and Torolof. Commodore asks his wife if she's afraid. Kitten tells the children to line up straight and sing a song for Messiah. Lotta plays with Fard. Lin wonders if her sister is alright. Lotta points her out to her. Sheryl and Gije are glad they made it in time. Galbaba Gra asks Miya to dance for him. Rapoh hugs Moera. Moera says everyone will laugh at them but Hatari says he won't since he's alone. Tekuno and Bento wonder what's up ahead. The children sing "Happy Birthday, Dear Children." Daram wakes up Harulu, who says it's a cute song. Rukuku and Kulara laugh. Joliver tells Kilarul that its a birthday celebration song. Kitten finds Deck and Kasha watching over Cosmo, who hasn't awoken yet. Kitten tells Deck that he can return to everyone else and leave things to her and Kasha. Kitten kisses Cosmo. Karala's abdomen glows as Messiah appears out of her. Messiah flies off with Piper Lou. Karala tells Bes they won't get lost. As everyone's spirits start following Messiah, Cosmo awakens. Cosmo tells Kitten he wanted to see her again since he couldn't do anything for her. Kitten says everything's alright and flies off to be with the children. Kasha tells Cosmo that what they did wasn't in vain. The two of them fly towards Messiah's light. They are greeted by Damido and Mayaya. Doba tells Zou that these children were at the heart of invoking the Ide. Gije and Sheryl also appear before Cosmo and Kasha. Cosmo tells Kitten they should be happy from now on. She agrees. Messiah guides everyone's souls as they head past Doumou Star and the partially destroyed Saturn. They head towards a new planet, where everyone's spirits head into the water.

 

Commentary

 

Space Runaway Ideon concludes with one of the greatest anime movies of all time. At a running time of just under 100 minutes, Be Invoked replays a shortened version of the final episode of the TV series, then displays the true final four episodes for the first time. With a battle that settles the fate of humanity, its one of the more epic anime movies in existence. Both the animation and music are top notch, better than anything we ever see in the series. The true nature of the Ide is finally revealed, that it finds humanity and the Buff Clan as impure and seeks to absorb the pure, young life into itself. Although the fact that everyone's spirits were with Lou and Messiah at the end implies that everyone became part of the Ide, not just them. Three mecha are exclusive to the movie: the Jongu, the most powerful Heavy Mobile Mecha of all, the Zanza Lubu, and finally the Gando Rowa, the one device powerful enough to destroy the Ideon. Without a doubt, Be Invoked is most well-known for being "the movie where everyone dies." Although Tomino earned his "Kill 'Em All" nickname with Zambot 3 in 1977, Ideon is the penultimate "Kill 'Em All" anime, and the sole anime of his where he literally killed them all. Particularly heinous is Kitten's decapitation at the start of the movie (completely changed from her TV death), Karala being shot in the face by her own sister, and most of all, Ashura's head being vaporized. You can't get more horrific than killing a girl under 5 in a manner like that. I've heard rumors that the manner of her death wasn't in the original script but was rather an ad lib by the animation director, Tomonori Kogawa. Also infamous is the final 10 minutes where we see every single character naked. The final scene is an optimistic one after all the death and destruction received throughout the movie. Humanity and the Buff Clan are finally able to get along, but not until they've all died. The "Happy Birthday Dear Children" singing would be homaged in the final episode of Evangelion with the "To All the Children... Congratulations!" line. Incidentally enough, Evangelion would end up exactly in the same way as Ideon, with a screwed up original ending, a recap movie, and a final ending movie that featured the death of the human race. The live action footage to finish up the movie was also interesting and unique. Just what exactly happens at the climax remains somewhat of a mystery. While fanboys in versus discussions on the internet say non-stop that Ideon destroys the universe at the end, we don't see that. In fact, the partially destroyed Saturn (from episode 32) makes an appearance in the last scene. What is clear though is that all remnants of humanity have been wiped out. Viewers paying close attention will note Yoshiyuki Tomino himself appearing near the end of the film on the Solo Ship bridge. Another interesting shot is one near the end as the spirits of the cast head to their new world, a clear homage to the opening of 2001: A Space Odyssey. Looking back at the TV series and the movies, Ideon to me is one of the greatest anime of all time. Far ahead of its time and told in typical Tomino fashion, it is a true classic. It is unfortunate that it will likely never be officially released in the US. Those who enjoyed Ideon and are looking for something similar will enjoy Evangelion and the book Childhood's End by Arthur C. Clarke, both of which feature concepts similar to the Ide. Ones looking for similar characters and storylines should check out some of Tomino's other anime, particularly Gundam.

 

Overall Rating

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5 out of 5 stars
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