Gargantia ep7: short on forgiveness, short on words.
I find a lack of communication one of my key pet peeves. It’s such an annoyance to me, that I’m surprised more people don’t ask why I bother watching anime. So much of the medium relies on terrible communication to form its concepts, draw out its storytelling and fuel its romance. So if you’ve already watched this episode of Gargantia, you can guess what I’m annoyed by. But I’m going to be fair, unlike before I’m not going to wag my finger just at the hippies. There’s plenty of blame, shortsightedness and stupidity to go around.
You know if you want someone to do something, you ask them to do it. Conversely, if you want someone to not do something, you tell them to not do it. It’s not a very hard concept. So while on their first salvage trip, when Ledo attacks the whale squid like a rabid dog, there’s plenty of blame to go around. Bellows tries to tell him to keep his cool, but it’s too no avail. Ledo’s hardwired to fear and hate those things. And he doesn’t stop until the one he’s fighting is dead.
Back on the ship, everyone is horrified as to what has occurred. Ridget wonders what Ledo could have been thinking, which I find a baffling statement since she knows nothing about the guy. He doesn’t live on the planet, and has never met that creature before now (which we find out later, isn’t technically correct). For a creature that is supposed to be so sacred and feared, why is it that we see them on the dinner table in the previous episode. And why is it that we don’t get any sense of the creature’s power over seafaring people until now?
Regardless, Ledo has slaughtered the “sacred cow”, and now most everyone is pissed off. Of the few that are not is Pinion. For some reason this pleases him, and we find out why when he and Bellows confront each other. Apparently, his older brother died fighting a whale squid, and he’s aching for revenge. But it’s been stated several times before that he doesn’t dive, so I’m guessing he’s a bit traumatized by that experience, or one closely related to it.
Ridget doesn’t hold back giving Bellows or Ledo grief for their mistake. Bellows does the right thing in apologizing for the blunder of not warning Ledo about the whale squids. Ledo is completely unapologetic however, and doesn’t intend to stop killing at all. After all, that is literally what he’s born to do.
Ledo doesn’t waste any time getting to work. After the battle, he had already taken a piece of the squid’s carcass and placed it in for analysis by Chamber. He then visits Amy’s brother and tries to get info from him about the whale squids, which freaks the poor boy out. Amy doesn’t want him doing this either, but she can’t ever seem to get the words out.
Pinion’s plan is to use Ledo to dive into the thick of whale squid territory and retrieve some treasure that he believes is down there. He’s also convinced one of the major ship commanders in the fleet to join him on this. They seem to be the only ones without a crippling fear of the squids. And we soon find out why they’re probably less brave, and more foolish. Around the evening, the sea galaxy starts acting up, and we see a huge swarm/pod of squid come near the surface to meet the Gargantia fleet. It terrifies all the inhabitants, and the fleet’s captain commands that a complete blackout be initiated, along with total silence from everyone on board. Meanwhile, Ledo takes notice of this and heads off to meet Chamber and attack what may be thousands, or even more of the squid. He’s just realized that the squid are essentially the same species as the Hideauze that he’s been fighting this entire time. He even found a nail from the squid that was directly identical to the ones he uses for his ocarina. Amy and Ridget go to stop him. Amy attempts to do so with words, and fails. But Ridget arrives right after with armed guards, and at least holds him fast while the swarm passes.
The plan works, but things are just heating up for this show. As the episode ends, we see Pinion and one of the major ship captains request to leave with Ledo in search of treasure. The fleet commander is about to deny their request when he has a heart attack.
I know I sounded angry for this post, but I believe this was a very good, and important episode. The lack of conflict in this show is a problem no more. And so is the waiting apparently. I’ve wondered whether it would be the Alliance, or the Hideauze that showed up first in this series. And the Hideauze have been on Earth all along. Just as Ledo isn’t an alien on Earth, neither are they. I can’t imagine how squids evolved to the point where they became spacefaring super beings, but if they’re the exact same species as what’s lurking in Earth’s seas, then humans as a species are f*cked if they try anything. And it also makes me want to take a step back from criticizing the hippies are their stupid superstitious beliefs. I’d happily call those beasts sacred if it meant not having them murder me!
Blame has to be shared. Ledo may have been going with his programming (hard), but I hoped that he would’ve learned to think independently a little bit. Once the Hideauze returned, he went right back to being a robot (figuratively) again. Aside from acting independently of the fleet, there’s no independent thinking going on here. His only guidance now is his programming, and the hatred he has for these creatures. If he would stop for just a moment and think, he would realize that he’s the one endangering everyone in the fleet. He’s putting Amy at risk, and all she cares for. And I won’t believe for a second that he doesn’t have a crush on her.
I’m also a tad disappointed in the fleet. It appears that Amy wants to tell Ledo that she has feelings for him, but all she can do is beg and push out tears. Ridget may think that she’s being a touch leader, but she’s not gonna be able to bully around Ledo with any weaponry. She needs to be smarter and find a way to get through to Ledo, not just shoot him. Idiot. Bellows is generally a likable character, but I fear that she’s been made a scapegoat this episode. And a bit of that is deserved. Like I said, she did not properly prep Ledo at all, and set him up for failure. And I’d even extend some of the blame for the potential squid attack on her. And Pinion, wow, he’s the biggest idiot of them all. But Pinion’s intelligence has never been much of a subject for debate. He’s a foolish headstrong character, he may have the most in common with Ledo in that way. And while I don’t get the feeling he’s a villain, or a bad person, his decisions may be the ones that bring ruin to everyone around him. He’s a tragic character waiting to be realized. In a sense, he’s a time bomb for the series’ events. And with the fleet commander possibly meeting death soon, there may not be enough common sense and wisdom in this fleet to save it.
What happened to all that hope last episode?