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Episode 2: Schaft's Counterattack!

 

Review by Chris Guanche

August 15, 2012

 

Summary

 

Rain pours heavily as the carriers leave the SV2 station house with the heavily damaged Peacemakers. Sakaki wakes up Goto and informs him that the units will probably spend New Year's at the manufacturer. Goto thinks it probably won't be a happy new year for Shinobu, and Sakaki thinks the Griffon probably won't be back in the morning since it'll be busy with adjustments. Asuma finds Noa brushing her teeth in the bathroom, and she wonders if the same person is piloting the Griffon. She thinks the Griffon could be even stronger this time, and Asuma asks if the same is true for her, which makes her think about it. Asuma uses manual and automatic transmission on cars to compare Noa's piloting style to that used by Division 1 with the Peacemaker. Asuma brushes his teeth and says an Ingram piloted by Noa can stop the Griffon. At her hotel, Kanuka reads the newspaper headlines about the Griffon's return. On the tanker, Kurosaki asks Utsumi what the next showing is, and Utsumi says they should be dramatic. Utsumi then gets a call from a Schaft division manager, who warns him not to do anything that will implicate the company. Matsui visits Goto for tea and asks him if he remembers Utsumi. Matsui explains that Utsumi was forced to resign from Schaft Enterprises Japan, but they know nothing about his personal history. He wonders why they picked that spot and reveals that SEJ owns rooms in the Twin Tower Building where they could've easily viewed the fight. He thinks that's why it came to shore there, and Goto thinks it'll be hard to get any leads from Schaft. Goto asks Matsui if he's gotten any leads on the labor specialists, and Matsui tells him they're all in one hotel, but he's understaffed and can't follow them constantly. In the kitchen, Shinshi sighs and explains to Noa that he was supposed to spend New Year's with his wife Tamiko at a hot springs. Ota laughs and claims that only a fool would get married, which flips Shinshi's switch and makes him angry. Goto calls Noa over and asks her to bring up a certain topic with Kumagami. He then goes to roof and asks Kumagami if she's cold, but she tells him she likes the cold weather. He asks if something happened with Noa, and she tells him to cut the cheap tricks. She explains that Richard Won and Utsumi are the same man, but she doesn't have any information that would help the investigation. On the tanker, Kurosaki tells Utsumi that Bud is gone. Ota does target practice on a barrel in the water with Unit 2 and complains to Kumagami that he wants to practice on a moving target and use the riot gun. Kumagami asks what the moving target would be and tells him that ammo is limited. Noa takes her turn in Unit 1, but Hiromi Yamazaki tells her to wait because a ship is passing by. Noa puts away her revolver and draws again, but her series of shots all miss the barrel. Bud pulls up outside the SV2 station house in a taxi.

 

Later, Kurosaki tells Utsumi that Bud went to SV2 to say hello. Bud says he got as far as the front gate until he remembered that Goto saw them at the airport. Bud hates being holed up on the ship because he wants to brag to Noa about taking down the Peacemakers. Utsumi tells Bud not to be so worked up and says that level two is starting soon. Kurosaki thinks Bud is dangerous, but Utsumi tells him everything has its risks. At the station house, Kumagami works on a report late at night and pulls out a case with a broken watch inside. Noa walks in and asks Kumagami if she needs help, but Kumagami says she was about to go to sleep. The next morning, Shige and the mechanics hang New Year's good luck charms on the Ingrams and carriers. Noa thinks that the new year is something special, and Ota comments that for both happy and sad people, the new year is a sort of punctuation in their lives that marks the start of something new. Snow falls across the city, and Matsui calls Goto with news that all the labor specialists are checking out of the hotel at once. The SEJ division manager asks Utsumi why he didn't tell him about the auction, and Utsumi says it's because he hates him. The division manager thinks Utsumi is ungrateful, but Utsumi tells him that not matter what happens, he'll turn over the Griffon and its basic data. As the manager leaves the car, he and Kurosaki nod at each other. Kurosaki gives explosives to a mechanic and calls them "insurance" because they shouldn't rely totally on Bud. Utsumi addresses his clients on a bus and tells them that round two is about to begin. He tells them that the Griffon itself is not for sale, but rather its development staff. The bus quickly exits the expressway and ditches Matsui's tail. After hearing the news, Goto regretfully tells Sakaki that he can't go home tonight. As night falls, the Griffon emerges from the water near the Kasai Sealife Park, which triggers a dispatch call for Division 2. Goto addresses his team and tells everyone that he's counting on them. Kanuka boards a train with her grandmother Rei and hears news about the Griffon appearing. Rei tells her to go ahead and go, because if she doesn't, she'll regret it. Kanuka leaves the train and runs out of the station. Division 2 drives through the city on its way to fight the Griffon.

 

Commentary

 

This episode mainly deals with the aftermath of the Griffon taking out Division 1, as well as setting up the rematch with Division 2. Bud's childish behavior has the potential to cause problems, since he wants to brag to Noa about beating up the Peacemakers. Of course, since he's a kid, it's all a game to him. Utsumi is moving to the next phase of his plan: an auction for the Griffon's development team. I guess the Griffon is just a proof of concept to show off what their team is capable of, rather than being the product itself. Asuma made a good analogy when he compared the Ingram and Peacemaker to automatic and manual transmissions, but Noa's hesitance is understandable given that such advanced hardware like the Peacemakers were so easily taken down. Goto tries to sneakily follow up on the thread about Kumagami and Utsumi's past relationship, but he doesn't get anywhere. On another note, it was good to see Shinshi snap because it's a rare occurrence. Of course, that's what makes it funny. The stage has been set for the final confrontation between the Ingram and Griffon.

 

Overall Rating

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4 out of 5 stars
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