Home > Check-in Station, Episode by Episode > #GundamAGE ep22: Flit has put so many previous Gundam protagonists to shame, that Tomino should feel ashamed of himself. #anime

#GundamAGE ep22: Flit has put so many previous Gundam protagonists to shame, that Tomino should feel ashamed of himself. #anime

I don’t know whether to be more impressed by Flit, or by the Federation forces’ overall competence. This also once again allows me to say that despite Zeheart’s sexy quotient and first-rate X-Rou– Newtype skills, he’s still a terrible commander. He’s no Char or Athrun in that department. But most of all it allows me to say that Gundam AGE is a very entertaining show. There’s a special kind of payoff you get from this type of narrative.

And that’s the enjoyment (artificial or not) of seeing characters progress over a long period of time. And the additional joy of seeing various relationships evolve, devolve and permeate.

The episode starts off with a flashback of Zeheart at a very young age talking to Lord Ezelcant, who for now remains faceless. Zeheart is told of the beauty of Earth and foolishness of humans. When I hear of someone talking of the “human foolishness” it’s either a god, or some guy who has completely lost faith in humanity. Those people are generally very dangerous, because they end up becoming capable of taking or ordering the taking of many human lives. It’s a level of contempt that leads to a an extreme level of cowardice and callousness. It happened with Char in Char’s Counterattack, and has continued in Gundam ever since. I have no doubt that Lord Ezelcant will be no better.

He also seems like a powerful Newtype, giving Zeheart a vision of Earth, just by touching him. I have to say, that kind of telepathy is pretty boss.

Regardless, it seems this conversation is something Zeheart holds on to, and it’s helping to spur him on through his actions now. Those actions happen to be the annihilation of Big Ring and the invasion of Earth. And the show doesn’t waste much time with prep before we’re in an all out battle.

It felt good, reminding me of the first generation of AGE at its end when things got brutal and intense. You could feel the intensity in this battle even amongst the grunts. I don’t know if the Newtype corps of the Magician’s Eight were supposed to be a nod to the Black Tri-Stars (they didn’t have any personality and they weren’t a trio, so I say no), but they did show far the Vagain forces had come in cultivating Newtype powers. I thought for sure they were gonna cut an uncontested swath through the Feddies, all the way to Woolf and Asemu.  I was wrong, I underestimated the most powerful, most important character in this show up to this point.  Flit Asuno.

I know Flit was dedicated, but to think that he has become such a competent tactician and commander is pretty amazing. I’m not saying he’s a Legend of the Galactic Heroes-level  tactitian, but he’s definitely an improvement over Grodek. Despite having what the show called an inferior force, he was able to neutralize the Magician’s Eight (mostly) and protect his flanks without sacrificing any defense.  Things only got truly crazy once Zeheart (bad commander! Bad!) and Desil (that wonderful ball of pettiness and chaos) joined the battle.

I have to say, I’m worried about Woolf a bit now. Once Desil and Zeheart joined the chaos, he took some serious damage. I’ve been trolled before by perceived sempai mortality (Macross Frontier), but I have enough experience to believe that the golden armor that has protected him for so many episodes may finally be starting to fray.

Any battle that pushes Woolf back gets my attention. It didn’t look like he could handle Desil and Zeheart was getting some dangerous eagle-eyed shots on him. If it wasn’t for Flit’s surprisingi intervention (good commander! Good!) then I might have thought that Asemu would be picking up his Newtype powers from a tragic loss.

Ah yeah! Flit’s return to battle was the crowning moment for this episode. When a Gundam pilot returns to combat after a long hiatus it’s usually a big moment. It was for Amuro, though there are plenty of stubborn pilots who never really take a break from piloting (Heero, Char, Setsuna).

Every Gundam needs a good, bitter rivalry. Bad blood and hate are the spice of a good Gundam narrative. That said, Gundam AGE needs Desil and Flit now. Zeheart and Asemu feels a little too whiny and angsty for me. Too much like Athrun and Kira not seeing eye to eye.  That rivalry rarely got intense enough for me. And I don’t see Zeheart packing his foot locker and shuttling over to the Feddies anytime soon. So that kind of relationship seems like a waste at the moment.

In the end, Flit dominated his duel with Desil despite his aging AGE-1, and he won the battle tactically with a little help from his XO. He truly outshined the entire cast, including the current gen whelps who peppered his battlefield. It was a glorious, though temporary victory that left the Vagan military running away with their tail cannons between their jagged pointy legs. You gotta love it.

On the more subtle side, I’m sure Desil will only be more obsessed after meeting Flit in the AGE-1 again. Asemu is only gonna get more insecure after encountering Zeheart again, and once again coming short of praise from his father. And you would think Zeheart would get some criticism for losing such a big battle. But I’m not so sure about that last one. He may be too pretty to suffer any consequences without further failures.

Oh by the way, do we really need cutaways before and during the battle of Romary looking forlorn on the bridge, uttering Zeheart and Asemu’s names to herself? We get it! Don’t make this like Bleach or Naruto or even the first age of Gundam AGE where the chick calls the guy’s name out over and over without doing a damn thing!  Seriously!  This is one of my pet peeves. It’s so annoying and it gnaws at me.  Have a decent female character with a decent part, or have her shut the hell up until after the mission/campaign.
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