Patlabor: The New Files Ep. 7: Black Trinary


Workers leave a labor factory for the night, and a bomb in a gym bag explodes. Later, Shige takes a bath in an oil drum and reads about the explosion, which is the eighth in a series of bombings and the fifth in just one week. One of the mechanics thinks it might be the work of Beach House, and Shige thinks it’s possible since all the targets are connected to the Babylon Project. The mechanic thinks there’s nothing for them to worry about since the terrorists don’t use labors, but Shige tells him that SV2 has fought Beach House on multiple occasions. An explosion then goes off behind the station house, so Ota runs outside and starts shooting into the flames with a shotgun. The oil drum then rolls out of the fire with Shige in it. Goto later informs everyone that the explosion was caused by a leak in the propane tank and is unrelated to the serial bombings. In the office, Asuma points out that Sakaki is away on business, Goto is gone for the night, Shinobu is on vacation and Kumagami called in sick. Hiromi wonders if it’s ok to cover up evidence of the accident, and Shinshi says the mechanics are making sure Sakaki won’t know anything happened. Ota wants to know when they’ll be getting a new propane tank for their baths, and Asuma points out that the destroyed one was supposed to last for two more weeks. Shinshi thinks they’ll have to bear with it, but Ota itches himself and asks how they can perform their duties if they can’t take a bath. A public bath house is suggested, but Noa points out that the nearest one is 40 minutes away on foot. Asuma thinks they should just go in the maintenance van, but Ota reminds him that they’re on standby. Asuma thinks the carriers can just be brought to the bath house if there’s a call. Shinshi wonders if Goto will be ok with that, and Asuma thinks they should just invite Goto along. A man chases a mysterious person with a gym bag in the dark and gets knocked out. Goto and the others find him in the street and discover that he’s an inspector with Public Safety. The inspector tells them that he cornered the serial bomber, who is carrying another bomb. Goto asks if the bomber has any distinctive features, and the inspector mentions three moles under the right armpit. Goto orders Noa to take the inspector to the hospital while he and the others search the area for the bomber. Based on the surrounding area, the only place the bomber could’ve escaped to is the Kongo bath house. Goto thinks they have no choice because the people in the bath house are now hostages, so he tells everyone to remove their uniforms. The men of Division 2 enter the bath house in their street clothes.

After undressing and wrapping towels around themselves, the men of Division 2 enter the bath and start scanning the area. Shinshi tells Goto that he looked around and didn’t see anything that looks like a bomb, so Goto presumes it must be in a locker. He says no one will show their armpits if asked, and Shinshi comments that only a pervert would ask that. Ota thinks they should just start picking fights with everyone, but Asuma says that’s something that yakuza would do. Goto doesn’t care how they verify the armpits, but he starts examining the suspects. First, a guy with a ponytail, followed by a guy with a mohawk and another covered with moles. They also look at a heavyset man covered with scars across his body and wonder what his story is. There’s also a yakuza shaving in front of a mirror, for a total of five suspects. Ota wants to charge them all at once, and Goto asks what they would do if one of them gets pinned down. Asuma suggests taking control of all the lockers, but Goto notes that the bomber is probably carrying a remote detonator. Nobody wants to volunteer to take on the yakuza, and Ota decides to pursue the scarred man, whom he calls “13.” Goto orders Asuma and Hiromi to take on the ponytail while Shinshi handles the mohawk punk and he takes on the mole man. Asuma asks about the yakuza, and Goto responds if the other four are clean, the yakuza is their man and they’ll attack at once. Ota creeps around 13 as he poses in the mirror pretending to hold a rifle. Asuma and Hiromi take seats on either side of ponytail, and Shinshi sits down next to the punk. Asuma yawns and stretches his arms, followed by Hiromi, buy ponytail gets up. Goto tries to get a good look at mole man and asks a kid for help. Asuma and Hiromi get into the bath with ponytail and use the washcloth to create a bubble, and ponytail responds by farting. Shinshi tries to examine the punk and gets soap suds all over his face. The mole man counts his moles in the mirror and loses count when the young boy starts drawing constellations on his back. Goto rushes in from behind and drags the mole man over to Asuma, but he has no moles in his armpits. Ota rushes toward 13 and gets punched in the face, followed by 13 declaring that he’s not gay. Ponytail goes over to cool off by a fan, and Asuma tells Hiromi that he’s going to pick a fight so they can grab him. Ota gets into the bath with 13 and tries to sneak up on him. Asuma chugs down a whole bottle of milk, and when ponytail tries to get one, he sees that Asuma and Hiromi have taken all the bottles. Ota gets 13 in a stranglehold underwater, but 13 bites his leg. He then searches the unconscious 13 and finds no moles. Ponytail drinks a cola and gets insulted by Asuma, so ponytail starts shaking a cola bottle. Shinshi snaps and asks the punk to show his armpit, but the punk is a foreigner and doesn’t understand. Shinshi causes him to faint, but he has no moles. Ota runs into the next room and says ponytail is the bomber, so they knock him out and find no moles. Shinshi gets knocked out while trying to check the yakuza, so everyone charges. Ponytail joins the fight and slips on soap, knocking everyone into the water. After a chaotic fight, Goto shaves the yakuza’s armpit and finds no moles. At the same time, a woman exits the bath house and is surrounded by police. She lifts her arm to shade herself from the light, revealing three moles. Goto and the others run out of the bath house half naked and chase the woman.


Labors again take a backseat to wacky comedy in this episode, which finds the men of Division 2 carrying on a very strange search for a terrorist. Of course, their first mistake is assuming that the bomber is a man. I find it funny that none of these guys, despite being cops, wanted to take on the yakuza individually. This episode features several anime references, starting with its title, which is a reference to the Black Tri-Stars from Mobile Suit Gundam. The scarred man nicknamed 13 who keeps making rifle poses is an obvious reference to Duke Togo, the master sniper from Golgo 13. All of their fumbling attempts to find the bomber are ultimately pointless since it turned out to be a woman, but that doesn’t mean their efforts weren’t entertaining.

Overall Rating

Patlabor: The New Files Info

Naoyuki Yoshinaga

Kazunori Ito
Mamoru Oshii
Yutaka Izubuchi
Michiko Yokote
Hibari Arisu

Mechanical Designer(s):
Yutaka Izubuchi
Yoshinori Sayama

Character Designer:
Akemi Takada

Musical Composer:
Kenji Kawai

16 episodes

Video Release:
Japan 11.22.1990 – 04.23.1992
U.S. 06.14.2005 – 10.11.2005


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