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Episode 2: Galeade

 

Review by Chris Guanche

January 21, 2008

 

Summary

 

The transport ship lands at a Gilgamesh military spaceport on planet Galeade. Wounded Chirico stops at the gangway, and another pilot kicks him and knocks him down to the ground. Several soldiers call for a stretcher and ask a pilot named Gary Godan to help them. Godan simply grabs Chirico and roughly tosses him onto the stretcher when it arrives. One of the soldiers asks Godan to look after Chirico because he's badly dehydrated and it's a 17-hour trip to the base. As the troop convoy travels across the desert, Godan ineptly cares for Chirico and almost causes him to choke on water. A pilot named Nol Berkoff offers to take over, and Godan heads off to lie down in the corner of the truck. Berkoff tells Chirico that he's one of the lucky few survivors from the 1,500 AT pilots who fought at Taibas. Chirico attempts to say something and passes out. The next day, the convoy finally arrives at the M7 military base, and Chirico is wheeled over to the infirmary. Chirico flat lines in the operating room, but a surgeon uses defibrillator pads to revive him. After Chirico is stabilized, he's taken to an isolation ward and placed in a bed. At night, Chirico wakes up and sees that he's being watched by a young man named Glenborash Droka Zaki. Later, as surgeons change Chirico's bandages and comment on the speed of his recovery, Chirico notices that Zaki is glaring at him intently. At night, Chirico wakes up just as Zaki is about to stab him with a knife, but he moves sluggishly. Zaki aims for Chirico's throat, but Chirico manages to move enough to let his right shoulder take the damage. Zaki tries to stab Chirico again, but Chirico knocks his IV stand in the way. Berkoff then attacks Zaki and punches him down until several armed guards arrive. Zaki is taken to an interrogation room, where he's beaten by an officer named Wapp. Wapp asks Zaki if he knew Chirico from before, but Zaki answers that he didn't. Wapp then asks why Zaki tried to stab him, and Zaki says he had a premonition that he'd die because of Chirico. Wapp then knocks Zaki out of his chair and kicks him in the chest while he's down on the ground. Wapp asks why Base Commander Yugunt and Vice Commander Fuller are dealing with the punishment of a lowlife soldier, but Fuller doesn't give a clear answer. Fuller then asks Berkoff why he was there so far from his barrack, and Berkoff answers that he had to walk far to get a good view of the stars. Fuller and Yugunt leave after dismissing Berkoff, and Wapp kicks Zaki a few more times before leaving himself.

 

Later, Yugunt gets off a phone call and comments to Fuller that the Intelligence Department has lots of influence right now. Fuller is worried about the situation, but Yugunt assures him that they won't be held responsible for what happened. The next morning, Berkoff stands outside and talks briefly to Zaki when he limps by. He asks Zaki if he heard about Chirico before, and Zaki angrily tells him not to mention that name. A doctor examines Chirico and tells him to take it easy before releasing him. With his arm in a sling, Chirico takes his duffel bag over to his assigned barrack. As Chirico goes for a walk outside the base, he notices that Galeade's stronger gravity is having a negative impact on his injured body. He eventually stops to sit down on a rock and realizes that he's next to Godan. Godan asks Chirico if he angered someone and is impressed that he made it so far from the base on his own. Their conversation is suddenly interrupted when a sniper's bullet passes between their heads and barely misses hitting either of them. The two immediately dive for cover behind a line of rocks as more shots are fired. As they are both unarmed themselves, they begin to run downhill and hide behind another rock. Godan slowly lifts a rock above cover, and when it gets shot, he's able to tell where the sniper is. Chirico and Godan then jump off the hill and slide down a steep rock face. After tripping, they roll down to the bottom of the hill and run over to a factory building. They then break down the door into the building, which is filled with large vats of PR fluid. They hide behind cover, but the sniper continues firing and hits a PR fluid vat and an electrical box. PR fluid spills all over the floor, and sparks from the damaged electrical box ignite the spill. Godan uses a nearby storage shelter to shield himself and Chirico from the fire. Afterwards, soldiers in hazmat suits extinguish the fire and open the capsule. Godan tries to explain that he and Chirico were being sniped, and the soldiers tell them they've been ordered to report to AT hangar 38. At the AT hangar, and angry Wapp yells at Godan and Chirico to get in line with Berkoff and Zaki. Wapp explains that they're being sent to the front line to destroy a Balarant supply base. Yugunt and Fuller arrive, and Fuller explains that they'll be a squad of five under the command of Berkoff. Godan notes that they're short one man, and Fuller says that man will join them on the field. Later, the squad takes off in a helicopter to head to frontline base X-2. Wapp tells Fuller he doesn't understand why such a strange squad has been put together, and Yugunt says he wants to find out of they have anything in common other than being skilled pilots. Godan points out that Zaki tried to kill Chirico, and Berkoff says he wants everyone to get along. The helicopter then flies over the front line, where large numbers of Scopedogs are fighting Balarant Fatty ATs.

 

Commentary

 

The second episode switches its focus to Chirico, but since he's still injured, he doesn't have much to do for about half of it. We're also introduced to a few new characters, most of whom are now part of Chirico's new squad. Zaki certainly gives a strange reason for trying to kill Chirico, and I get the impression that there's more to it than he's letting on. Berkoff is rather mysterious, as he happened to be in the right place at just the right time to save Chirico's life. After that, there's the mysterious sniper who tries to kill Chirico and Godan when they're out of the base. Base officers such as Wapp and Fuller are suspicious about Chirico, and they seem to be mostly in the dark. Was someone literally trying to kill Chirico, or was Wockam somehow testing him again? At the very least, now that Chirico's back on his feet we'll get to see him in action again, along with the unknown fifth member of his squad.

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Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

3.5 out of 5 stars
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VOTOMS Pailsen Files Episode 2 VOTOMS Pailsen Files Episode 2

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