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Episode 25: Sorrowing Angel

 

Review by Dustin Corallo

February 25, 2009

 

Summary

 

As the battle continues, the Elevator begins to buckle from the stress, with the shards raining down to the Earth below. Leon continues to fly the Ender toward the Elevator, but as the ship gets closer, the group notices the adjuster foil moving up the Elevator, signifying the attack on Anchor Station had already begun. Cindy doesn’t understand the significance of this, so Leon explains to her how if something happens to Anchor Station, the adjuster foil is moved up the elevator to balance out once more, and if that doesn’t work, then Middle Station and Second Station are cut from the Elevator. Sameggi claims purging Middle Station and Second Station is unheard of, but Rachel tells him now would be the best time to do it. Just then the Ender takes a hit on its right cargo container, so Leon orders Noel to jettison it. But instead of just the right container, she also jettisons the left, claiming that the left side is bad luck. As if to prove her point, a stray beam obliterates the left container. Not long after, Leon manages to crash land the Ender into the Elevator, and the group immediately heads toward Central Station. Out in space, Dolores finally wakes up from being knocked out to find the upper torso of the Yan’s Raptor gripping her. She immediately throws it away and flies back toward the Elevator. James meanwhile is still holding on for his life and Rebecca’s, but the metal beam he is holding onto is beginning to bend. With as much strength as he can muster, he throws Rebecca to safety, but right after that his grip loosens and he begins to fall. Fortunately, Dolores is there to catch him. Dolores immediately puts James down as well, and just as James is thinking he’s safe, he hears the cocking of a gun’s hammer. He looks over to see Rebecca holding a gun to his head, to which she says this time it isn’t empty. James can’t believe Rebecca is doing this, to which Rebecca replies it’s for her father’s sake and her family bond. James reacts quickly by punching her in the gut and knocking the gun away. Dolores tries to speak out, but James tells her to be quiet. He then grabs Rebecca and tells her a parent who sacrifices the life of his child isn’t a parent at all. Rebecca demands to know how he knows this, and James tells her he’s a father too, and that a family bond isn’t something coldhearted. James demands to know if she’s ever felt any warmth from Radium, to which Rebecca is unable to answer him. Seeing his point made, he puts Rebecca down and tells her not to let herself be pushed around by Radium. With that, he tells Rebecca goodbye and jumps back into Dolores, flying away and leaving a bewildered Rebecca behind. In Central Station, a UNSF official and staff watch as the adjuster foil breaks down from battle damage, to which the official orders the second adjuster to be sent. At the same time, it’s reported that Anchor Station has taken 20 percent damage and the Elevator begins to shake uncontrollably as a result. Down on Earth, a massive storm kicks up as the Elevator begins to sink into the ocean. When one of the staff members recommends cutting away Second Station, the official demands to know who would take responsibility for that. Just as he exclaims that, the second adjuster foil begins to move. Elsewhere, Axel is searching for Rebecca when he notices a piece debris falling from the Elevator. Meanwhile, the UNSF LEVs on the second adjuster foil defend it against the Raptor onslaught, but the foil still takes damage. As a result, the UNSF official orders the third foil to be moved just as the Ender group enters the control center. Rachel tells the official to purge Middle and Second Stations, thus removing the Earth side weight and restoring the Elevator’s balance. When the official won’t give the order, Rachel walks past him and asks how the evacuations on either station are going, to which an operator replies they’re already complete. Despite that, the official still won’t give the order, so Rachel takes matters into her own hands and reminds everyone that there are a hundred and twenty million people on Earth, and that running away now would only forfeit their lives. With that thought sunk in, the operators begin preparations to purge either stations. Cindy takes a few pictures of Rachel, while Sameggi tells the official that they are going to cut away both stations. However, the official tells them that the purge systems are manually operated with a set of keys that he wears around his neck. Leon berates him for not telling them sooner and takes the keys. He then throws a headset toward Cindy and tells her to guide him and Noel to that section of the Elevator, before he and his sister take off to the elevator. Rachel takes the opportunity to contact James, who tells her he and Dolores are heading toward Anchor Station. Rachel tells him the situation and that she is counting on Dolores and himself before signing off. Laughing a little, James notes that despite everything he’s still under her thumb. As Hathor continues its attack on Anchor Station, Dolores wonders how someone could do such horrible things, to which James tells her Radium had hope too at one time. He says that when a person has hope, he will keep trying, but when that hope is decimated, the harder one tries the more despair he feels. When Dolores feels that what Radium is doing is a bad thing, James tells her that in every human heart lives a monster, one that at some point will ask “shall I release you from your despair?” However, James comments that there’s no other way to rise over one’s despair than with that person’s own hands, and that no matter how good a person can be, if he’s lured in by that monster, he will fail as a human.

 

Soon, the battle moves around Central Station, which despite the valiant efforts of the defending Phantoma IIs, a pair of Raptors manage to break through the defense line and enter the station. Meanwhile, Leon and Noel continue to float to the control area, but they are caught in the shockwave of an explosion, temporarily hindering them. Cindy tells them turn up ahead and they will reach the control area. However, just as they do that, one of the Raptors appears and pursues them. Quickly, they both enter the control area and seal the door behind them. With little time to spare, they both move to a console and Leon begins typing commands, gaining access in a few moments. Just as they beginning purging the stations, the Raptor breaks through the door and fires at them, with Leon tackling Noel to get her out of the shot. Before the Raptor can finish them however, a Phantoma appears and disables it with its beam cannon. This relieves Leon greatly, accidentally snuggling against Noel’s breasts, to which she comically beats him up for. Outside, Second and Middle Stations separate from the Elevator, with the pieces falling down into the Earth’s atmosphere and appearing as multiple shooting stars. Meanwhile, Rebecca signals Axel to pick her up, and when she asks where Rully is, Axel hesitantly tells her that Rully was killed, to which Rebecca looks away saddened. Using the AlterNeith to jump start Rebecca’s Selkis, she tells Axel that they will be heading to Anchor Station to see Radium. As Dolores nears Anchor Station, she begins to resonate from Hathor’s presence there, and she comments at how her sister is waiting for them, as the same thing runs through them. Just as Hathor blasts a hole through Anchor Station, the image of Dolores Hayes informs Radium that the other Dolores is coming to them. Radium proclaims he won’t let them get in his way, and lowers Hathor down into Anchor Station. Meanwhile in an imaginary church, Radium and the false Dolores embrace and a make believe wedding. Just as they are about to walk out of the church however, they come across James, who is waiting for them at the doorway. He comments that he’s sorry to bother them when they’re happy like that, but if he lets them go any further, then they will make everyone miserable. Back in the real world, Dolores appears before Hathor, prompting Hathor to enter its attack mode. Radium wonders if James really believes he’s going to get in the way of their honeymoon, and James tells them that he is. Radium tells him he can’t allow that, and the false Dolores reaches out to him. At the same time, Hathor prepares a burst attack and launches it at Dolores, to which James has her dodge. James counters by punching Radium, which also knocks the false Dolores away, while in the real world Hathor retracts from the attack as well. As James and Radium fight in the church, their movements are mirrored by their orbital frames in reality. Hathor prepares its arm blades and attempts to slash at Dolores, but Dolores manages to parry the blow. In response, Hathor reels back and kicks Dolores away, while in the church James flies back into a pew. Radium taunts him, and James responds by diving at him, to which Dolores tackles Hathor into a group of containers. Dolores then flies back and pulls out a beam launcher from her vector trap, and rains down energy bolts at Hathor, which deflects the bolts with its shield. As James takes another hit from Radium, he notices that the fake Dolores is watching them with a fanatical smile on her face. In the real world, Dolores sees an image of Idolo in place of Hathor, which distracts her for a moment and allows Hathor to cut the beam launcher in half. In the church, Radium lays a furious beating into James while the fake Dolores continues to watch, while Hathor mirrors his movements and attacks Dolores with its arm blades, knocking her into a wall. As Radium stands over a fallen James, he sees another person standing at the doorway: Viola Geyse. Greeting her, Radium wonders if Viola wants to get in their way as well, to which he reaches out and prepares to shoot her. James yells at him to stop, but he fires anyway and shoots her through the chest. In reality, Hathor fired a shot through Selkis, barely missing Rebecca as it did. Rebecca wonders why her father did that, to which she is greeted by Radium’s insane laughter. Radium then comments how Dolores is the only thing that matters to him, and that the rest are garbage. For that, he states that everyone that gets in their way should disappear. As he says this, Hathor prepares another burst attack and launches it at Selkis, but Dolores flies in front of her and brings up her shield to deflect the shot. James tells Axel and Rebecca that they will settle things with Radium and that the two of them should leave. Rebecca then wonders why Dolores did that for her, to which Dolores replies it’s only natural as they are friends. Dolores tells her that she won’t standby and watch her friends get hurt. With that said, Axel pulls Selkis and Rebecca away, and Hathor stops its attack. James wonders if Dolores is alright, and Dolores tells her it’s nothing, but she doesn’t want to lose to Radium. James tells her he feels the same way, that if he loses to someone that treats people as disposable, Leon and Noel would look down on him for it.

 

Commentary

 

We’re getting into the final stage of the series now, and as such things are intensifying even further: notably the final battle between James and Radium/Dolores and Hathor. With the destruction of Earth imminent, Radium continues to lose the last semblances of his sanity and allows himself to be manipulated by the fake Dolores (who is obviously an incarnation of Hathor in a similar way to the OF Dolores persona). I wonder if he even realizes what he is doing anymore or if he even cares about that at all. He even fired a shot at Rebecca over it; sure he never cared about her from the beginning, but it was still a fairly surprising action. Speaking of Rebecca, I was right; even when James managed to save her life, she still turned against him because she felt she was doing it for Radium. Fortunately, James’ speech managed to sew doubt in her about Radium, which was finalized by that shot he fired at her. If that doesn’t cause her to get a grip on reality, then I don’t think anything else will. And on another note, if the previous episodes didn’t do it, then this episode seriously turned me off to the concept of the Orbital Elevator. That scene where Middle and Second Stations separated from the Elevator with the pieces raining down on the Earth reminded me of the various colony and asteroid drops from the Gundam franchise (namely the Junius Seven drop from Gundam SEED DESTINY), and I can only imagine how much damage those pieces would cause should they survive reentry. It was a pretty eerie scene, especially since the modern day world is actually considering the concept of elevator(s) alongside the likes of space colonies. All in all, not much else happens besides the (losing) battle between the UNSF and the Raptor legions, but by the look of this episode you can tell that the finale will be a great one. Or at least, I hope it will.

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Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

4 out of 5 stars
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ZOE Dolores, i Episode 25 ZOE Dolores, i Episode 25

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