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Trigun Ep. 8: And Between the Wasteland and Sky…

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Summary

The steamer is charging full speed ahead, and its engines are in danger of failure within 10 minutes. Meanwhile, Brilliant Dynamite Neon’s thugs are searching for Vash, who is hiding in a vent planning what to do next. The kid reveals that his father was the designer of the sand steamer, and pulls out a traced schematic. As he is growing hopeless and reminiscing of the past, Vash bonks him on the head several dozen times to bring him back to reality. Vash rolls a cart, with some unexploded shells on it, to distract some guards while he opens fire on them. One guard stumbles back to BDN, with a note taped to his back, stating that Vash is beyond human. BDN sends out a message to the entire ship for Vash’s capture. Vash pretends to be a guard and acts out a scene of Vash terrorizing him. He gives the kid a pen that doubles as a two way radio. The kid asks how he got hold of lost technology, but Vash tells him he wouldn’t believe it. After walking outside, Vash begins to give medical treatment to the guards he fought earlier. When the kid looks baffled, Vash explains that “she”, referring to Rem, would be unhappy if he took a life. We can also see that he has been wounded in the side. The kid has a flashback in which we see a sequence of imagines involving his parent’s death, Vash in a cloak, and him joining BDN’s gang. He remarks to Vash that they used to kill people, and that Vash has become too clean. Vash replies that the future is always blank.

Vash is being directed by the kid to proceed to a room assumed to be the least guarded. BDN and most of his guards wait right behind the door and fire all weapons at Vash when he enters. The shots all hit the wall behind him, as BDN was just testing Vash’s courage. Meryl and Milly, disguised in guard suits they had stolen earlier, hold BDN at gunpoint. The ship begins to quake as the engine begins to fail. BDN and Vash agree to a duel outside the steamer to determine its fate. The whole ship watches on as BDN flips a coin which will determine the start of the duel. Before the coin hits the floor, the ship brushes against some rocks which causes an avalanche between the two. BDN beings to fire wildly, but Vash stealthily fires off several well aimed shots and knocks him to the floor. Vash’s injury has worsened and BDN has the upper hand being the first to get up. BDN refuses to finish him off out of respect. The kid offers to help the crew stop the steamer, but they refuse since they blame him for assisting in the takeover. The kid puts on a protective suit and goes in anyway, knowing exactly which lever to pull. As he wakes up badly injured and in bandages, the train has stopped just shot of a deep chasm. BDN is long gone after throwing his weight around and promising no mercy to Vash next time. The kid and Vash climb to the top of the steamer, where he sings a song which was a favorite of Rems’, causing Vash to become teary eyed.

Commentary

A weak follow up to the previous episode, this installment moved the story along very little. The only character development we got was the brief flashbacks. Vash’s dialogue about the communicator pen does indicate, interestingly, that he may remember a bit more about his past than he is letting on. The agents appear for less than a minute in this one. Most of the first half is taken up by Vash hiding in a tunnel and popping out to shoot henchmen. The second half is just an extended duel and rescue sequence. In total, this episode was just too heavy on action and too light on plot and character development. While some of the earlier episodes had this same flaw, they were heavy on humor, which redeemed them completely. I hope the next time the show pulls a two parter, it uses a better setup than this disappointing action fest.

Overall Rating
2.5/5
Trigun Info


Director:
Satoshi Nishimura

Writer(s):
Yousuke Kuroda
Yasuhiro Nightow (manga)

Mechanical Designer:
Noriyuki Jinguji

Character Designer:
Takahiro Yoshimatsu

Musical Composer:
Tsuneo Imahori

Airdates:
Japan 04.01.1998 – 09.30.1998
U.S. 03.31.2003 – 05.13.2003

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