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Episode 31: The Plotted Crusade

 

Review by Chris Guanche

October 2, 2014

 

Summary

 

Julia prays with her followers outside of the Grados Tower in New York. Gresco is informed that Julia wants to meet with him and agrees to her request. Gresco notes that Julia was once just a soldier and asked what happened to her. She pleads with him to give orders so that Earthlings and Gradosians live together peacefully, and Gresco asks if she thinks he's the kind of man to give that order. Le Cain butts in and asks his father to not listen to Julia. Le Cain states that Earthlings are inferior in every way, so living in peace with them is absurd. Julia believes that both races are the same and that Earthlings know pride, beauty and love. Le Cain only sees submissive slaves, but Julia points out that that's because Gradosians force them to be. Le Cain decides that the best way to prove which race is better is through a battle. If Earthlings win, she'll be spared, but if not, she'll be executed. Le Cain asks for his father's opinion, but Gresco says nothing and watches his incense burn. Military police announce Julia's capture and put out a call for an Earthling warrior to fight on her behalf. Matthew overhears the news and runs off to tell everyone. Roanne reports to Le Cain that the population has been shocked, but no one has stepped forth to defend Julia. Giulla teases Roanne about representing Earth, but Roanne answers that he knows his place. He thinks this is all just a way for Le Cain to measure Earth's fighting power. Roanne later speaks with Arthur, who asks why Le Cain doesn't just kill her if she's an obstacle. Roanne explains that doing so will increase hatred of Grados, but framing it as an Earthling failure to protect her is a better outcome. Eiji refuses to violate the rules and take David to the Doll factory, noting that they're not ready for combat yet. David and Simone plead with Eiji, and he tells them that they'll lose if they fight. Le Cain addresses the Death Demon Squad and offers one of them the chance to fight on behalf of Grados. He slaps Gosterro for speaking out of turn and notes his many previous failures, so Gosterro asks for one last chance. Le Cain asks Gosterro if he hates Julia that much and decides to give him one last chance. After he leaves, Manjero, Bohn and Getey tease Gosterro about hating the woman who rejected his love.

 

Eiji takes Anna, David and Simone to the underground factory, where they're greeted by Elizabeth and Gilbert. Gilbert explains that their greatest fear is being discovered by Grados before they can build up their combat capacity. He refuses to let David borrow a Doll, and Elizabeth adds that Eiji will be handling things. David and Simone talk about Earthling pride being lost and not easily reclaimed, but Gilbert counters that the only think that can't be reclaimed is lives. At Yankee Stadium, Gosterro offers a guard a bag of gold. David sucker punches Eiji and steals a Doll with Simone's help. Gosterro's Daljan steps forward in the stadium while waiting for the arrival of an Earth challenger. Le Cain addresses the crowd and asks if Earth has no warriors who will step forward. However, Julia steps forward and states that this isn't about pride and there's no battle to be fought. Le Cain mocks the crowd as a bunch of frightened primates who are too cowardly to save an ally. Le Cain has Julia taken to the center of the stadium for her execution. He states that he's not killing her, but rather all of them are through their inaction. Gosterro dismounts from the Daljan and licks his claw glove as he approaches Julia. Before he can kill her, David enters the stadium in the Doll and challenges Gosterro to a fight. David rolls forward with the Doll's wheels, but Gosterro dodges. Gosterro's bribed guard uses a sniper rifle to target David due to the Doll's cockpit canopy being incomplete. David jumps and grabs Gosterro, pulling him down for a knuckle shot punch. David gets a few more punches in, and the strain at the controls causes damage to Gosterro's cyborg left arm. The sniper fires and hits David's right arm, creating an opening for Gosterro to attack with his metal claw. David dodges, but Gosterro rams into the Doll and knocks David out of the cockpit. Simone hops into the cockpit challenges Gosterro, losing an arm in the process. The sniper hits her in the shoulder and is knocked out by Eiji. Simone falls out of the cockpit just before Gosterro stabs the Doll and destroys it. Eiji drags out the sniper and accuses Gosterro of cheating. He then jumps into Layzner when it arrives, and the Death Demon Squad restrains the Daljan. Gosterro begs for mercy, but Le Cain declares him a disgrace. He pulls out a gun to kill him, but Julia begs for mercy because he's pitiful. Le Cain has Gosterro jailed and angrily storms off. Gresco thinks to himself that Le Cain is still young and has much to learn.

 

Commentary

 

Julia finally gets her meeting with Gresco, but her pleas fall on deaf ears. Gresco seems more interested in his incense, and Le Cain obviously isn't going to listen to her. So he crafts this gladiatorial match in Yankee Stadium as a challenge to Earthlings. His purpose is two-fold: demoralize the Earthlings and kill Julia when they lose, and also learn about their fighting capability. When it comes to the latter, David completely falls into the trap and reveals the Doll's existence before it was complete. On top of that, both he and Simone lose to Gosterro and let the SPT get destroyed. They're saved by Eiji's intervention and his proof of Gosterro's dirty tricks. David argues with Eiji about pride and other nonsense, completely unaware how difficult it is for Eiji since Julia is his sister. As for Gosterro, it seems like it's finally the end of the line for him as he earns yet another disgrace. But he won't die so easily.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

4 out of 5 stars
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SPT Layzner Episode 31 SPT Layzner Episode 31
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