Thanasis is a writer, professional geek, and assistant editor at MANGA.TOKYO. He started watching anime with the mecha shows of the 70s and hasn't stopped since. He loves JRPGs.
Tenkawa is invinsible! Well, at least this is what the episode kept on saying on various scenes, and I tend to agree if just on one point: she is the most interesting character of the series so far. I don’t know if I am becoming morbid, but I am glad we won’t have to hear Canaria sing during this episode. The title of the previous episode might have given it away, but it seems like Canaria is really dead. She was cute, but not OMG-WHY cute.
Canaria is dead. That’s it. A shame really, but the Speakeasy decided to make us feel a little better by taking the time to build on one of their characters. I say it was about time. I don’t know how you feel about the series thus far, but I really don’t feel any kind of connection to any of the characters. That changed today with Maihime-chan. She is officially my favorite character, not that there’s anyone that can challenge her.
From the title it was evident that this episode was going to focus on our little princess, Tenkawa Maihime. Why she is a princess, I have no idea. After a very emotional scene in which Ichiya shows some kind of emotion before turning into a grieving zombie, we are shown that Takawa had that terrifyingly positive attitude even in her father’s funeral. She was a child that could hide her feeling so that others wouldn’t have to feel the burden of her negative feelings. Rindou has been with her since she was a child, which partly explains her overprotective nature.
After Canaria and 6 other students died from alien sneak attacks (they were sneaky, alright), Ohime-chin is ordered to take over Tokyo as interim leader. Both Chiba and Kanagawa are also ordered to provide cover for their heart-broken allies. Ichiya is in no position to either fight or lead, as he is quarantined in his quarters because of his extreme grief. That boy really loves living on the extreme side of every negative reaction he can feel. Kasumi and Maihime use reverse psychology to, first, make the Tokyo little Hogwarts students to miss Ichiya and to want him back as their leader, and second, to feel proud of their city and retrieve their combat-readiness after the tragedy of Canaria’s death.
This episode managed to be a little less boring because of its focus on the leadership qualities of Maihime, and on its final cliffhanger. In the final scenes it’s revealed that the chip we first saw on Aoi’s neck is present on all the students and that it’s called Code. There is also a slim possibility that the violation of the no-entry zone really pissed off the aliens who turned the sky red (in the same way we see in the flashbacks concerning their first invasion).
Now that the children are starting to suspect that something is not quite right, we might get some interesting plot developments.
Leader Qualities: This is the main theme of the episode. The qualities of a leader and how he should react in time of need. A true leader doesn’t have to choose between being faithful to his feelings and appearing weak in front of his subordinates. He just has to realize that they needn’t mingle. Leaders are humans as well, and they have the same needs. Ohime-chin has all the qualities of a good leader: she is supportive, energetic, gives (fairly) good rally speeches and never appears weak in front of the child-soldiers. But she also has a trusting friend on whose shoulder she can cry.
Reverse Psychology: First Maihime and then Chigusa use reverse psychology to make the students of Tokyo district assume their responsibility as guardians of their city. Reverse psychology is a technique involving the advocacy of a belief or behavior that is opposite to the one desired, with the expectation that this approach will encourage the subject of the persuasion to do what actually is desired: the opposite of what is suggested. I guess they both got what they wanted.
Ohime-chin: I was a little puzzled when Rindou called Tenkawa ‘Ohime-chin’. I had never heard that honorific before and it took some research to learn that it’s a form of nickname calling between good friends. I don’t know what’s the closest thing in English is except for when babies say ‘dada’ instead of daddy. It’s like baby talk. In the same category you can find suffixes such as –chama, -tan, etc.
It’s amazing how the series introduces new characters when we haven’t had the chance to really know the ones we are already introduced to. Ginko and Zakko sure look cool – who wouldn’t carrying a shythe? –, but I still don’t know enough about the cast to invest in new characters. And getting to know Maihime doesn’t justify their sudden introduction.
The episode was quite boring, except for two scenes: Maihime confronting Suzaku, and the cliffhanger in the end. The almost philosophic discussion among the two almost made me feel like I was watching a different show. The dialogue was almost interesting and the characters almost felt like they were emotionally charged. The problem is that if I continue analyzing the scene, I am going to use the word ‘almost’ at least five more times. It was a good scene. Almost. But the cliffhanger was awesome. I KNEW there was something fishy about the aliens. I KNEW IT. I am pretty sure that this whole arrangement is a secret pact between the aliens and the survivors. What do you think? Do you have any theories of your own? Let’s get geeky in the comments below.
Qualidea Code has done something few anime managed to do until now. Even though it mostly sucks, there is an underlying mystery in the plot that I’m dying to find out. I already have my theories and I want to see if I get anything right. Damn you, writers of SpeakEasy, for getting me hooked to your uninspiring characters. Damn you.
NEXT TIME: Memoria of Salvation (救世のメモリア)