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Stage 6: Cherry Blossom Phantom

 

Review by Peter Laliberte

February 13, 2011

 

Summary

 

At the Earth Cradle, Archibald speaks to a woman he has searching for the Chokijin. She tells him that an entire area has turned to salt. Archibald wonders if the Einst appeared as well and tells the woman to keep looking. Arado dreams of a promise he made to Seolla about surviving and finding the missing School members. He then wakes up to find Excellen, Latooni and Kai in the room who tell him he’s on the Hagane. Latooni explains they picked up his life pod and admits that she was the one who shot him down. Excellen tells him not to be too hard on her since Latooni was by his side the entire time he was out. Kai reports to Daitetsu about Arado, noting the drugs and possible mind control he was exposed to. Daitetsu says they’ll keep Arado on board until they reach Aviano Base where they’ll hand him over to specialists. Kai says he has a suggestion. Latooni tells Arado how Seolla retreated and that she’s happy he hasn’t changed. Arado notes that Latooni has changed for the better. She assures him that he’s still her friend. Seolla undergoes brainwashing by Agilla Setme, who tells her that Latooni killed Arado and that she should forget about him. Afterwards, Egret notes that memories become unstable with false emotions, but Agilla says that memories and feelings draw out power beyond expectations. Egret thinks to himself that his kids won’t need such things. Agilla says Latooni is the one who interests her and Cuervo wonders if the Federation reconditioned her. Agilla says Kenzo Kobayashi might and it’s worth investigating. She adds they’ll ask Vindel for help and send out Ouka Nagisa. During a workout session, Kai asks Bullet and Ryusei to talk to Arado since they’re ages are similar. He wants Arado to choose his own path, but Rai suggests he could be a spy. Lamia objects, saying a spy wouldn’t jump in front of a bullet because a spy that doesn’t reach the enemy is pointless. Kai says he understands Rai’s point, but he’s also considering Latooni. He wants to treat Arado like a human rather than a guinea pig. Kai adds that it would be good if Arado turned out like Leona and Ryoto, but Bullet says he doesn’t want to force him. Arado eats a lot, impressing Ryusei and Bullet. Bullet asks how old Arado is and he answers he’s about fifteen, explaining that he has no memory of his life before The School. He says he doesn’t care about that since he was sent to The School, it must not have been good. Bullet asks what Arado fights for and he says to eat because no one taught him another way to live. Daitetsu puts the Arado matter in Kai’s hands, with Kai saying that Arado is still young and can start over. In the shower, Lamia thinks about how treating Arado as a human will interfere with the mission and that soldiers are just tools for war. Still, she wonders why it’s bothering her so much. Arado wonders what the others are thinking when the battle alarm goes off. Arado sees it as his chance.

 

In the hangar, Latooni sees Arado sneak into a Wildschwein. She confronts him but he pulls her into the cockpit and launches. The Hagane’s forces head out and Lamia hopes the enemy’s appearance is a response to her situation. The group dodges a long range attack that was fired by Ouka and her Rapiecage. She then calls out to Latooni. Echidna leads a squad of R-Eins, who she orders to support Ouka while Echidna handles her own mission. The R-1 locks onto an R-Ein, and Ryusei is shocked to recognize it as an R-Blade. Ouka catches Arado’s Wildschwein and tells Latooni she doesn’t blame her for killing Arado. Arado reveals that he’s alive and Ouka praises him for escaping with Latooni. She adds that their mother will take care of Latooni but Latooni begs Arado to not take her back. Echidna’s R-Ein tackles the Angelg to the ground and both pilots leave their machines. Ouka tells Latooni that the Federation reconditioned her, but Latooni denies it. She says she remembers her days with everyone at The School but she doesn’t want to go back because she regained her true self. She adds she’s going to free the others from The School’s curse. Ouka tells Arado to bring Latooni back, but Arado asks who this "mother" is she’s talking about. Ouka says it’s Agilla. Arado breaks free, asking if Ouka remembers what Agilla did to them. Ouka insists that Agilla is their mother, making Latooni realize she’s been reconditioned. Arado refuses to take Latooni back, saying he likes the current Latooni more. Ouka gets a headache but says it’s her duty to guide them, even if it means killing them. Before Ouka can attack, the Alteisen flies in and engages her. Kyosuke destroys her rifle with his heat horn, impressing Arado. Ouka’s headache worsens, causing her to retreat. Bullet restrains Arado’s Wildschwein and Arado thinks it’s for the best. He figures if Ouka is like that, Seolla probably is as well. Lamia and Echidna share data and Echidna gives Lamia a replacement secret transmitter. The Hagane detects a gravity quake and the Soulgain jumps out on a nearby island. Axel wonders where he is and sees the Alteisen charging towards him, thinking it is Beowulf’s machine. They clash, but Soulgain is too damaged and falls over. Echidna and another R-Ein pick up Soulgain and retreat. Irm tries to shoot them down with a Final Beam, but an R-Ein sacrifices itself to let the others escape. Lamia watches them go.

 

Commentary

 

Another episode mostly dedicated to The School storyline. We meet Agilla, the woman responsible for the whole mess and, as if it were possible, she’s actually worse than Adler. She messes with Seolla and Ouka’s minds, though it is interesting that rather than make them heartless killing machines, she gives them memories and emotions, knowing that such things are what allow humans to exceed their limitations. Kai decides to try and get Arado on their side like they’ve done with past enemies. It’s amusing that Lamia defends him. She’d certainly know the finer points of spying since she’s a spy herself. Despite the fair treatment, Arado blows it by trying to escape with Latooni. We’re introduced to their big sister Ouka, another character I’m extremely fond of. Her mech is awesome, but unfortunately Agilla’s tinkered with her head as well. Because of that Arado knows that returning to the DC is not an option. The episode ends out with Axel suddenly appearing, trading blows with Kyosuke briefly before being taken away. It’ll be the first of many clashes to come.

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Overall Rating

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3.5 out of 5 stars
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SRW OG The Inspector Episode 6 SRW OG The Inspector Episode 6

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