Majestic Prince ep23: I’m the hero… probably
I hope the GDF didn’t expect this battle to be won easily. Having tried everything from range, and coming up empty on results, Earth’s forces are somewhat left imp and deflated by the beginning of this episode. Even the most elite of elite, the mightiest of the mighty, Team Rabbits is unable to make much of a dent in the Wulgaru wall in front of the interstellar gate. This is clearly one of those “darkest before dawn” situations, and things are only going to get worst since Prince Jiart has grown weary of waiting.
With resources for most of Team Rabbits badly depleted, they are ordered to return to their ship for resupply, but this is exactly the moment Jiart shows up to intervene and block them from their one escape route. Team Rabbits attempts to push through, but there’s just no touching Jiart. This predictably is the moment we’ve been waiting for; the moment Izuru is forced onto the battlefield. He gives the crew a heartfelt, but terrible speech and is permitted to launch by Rin. It’s likely the last launch of Red-5 we’ll see. Izuru arrives just in time to save Toshikazu and send the team on their way, though Ange stays on the field to tangle with the general of Wulgaru’s forces, Dolgana. How Ange can expel as much ammo as he does and still not have to resupply is a mystery to me.
Team Rabbits aside, things are going horribly for the rest of Earth’s forces. Amane is left attempting to pick up the pieces as it seems the Chinese and Russian forces have turned tail, and there’s scarcely any room for a retrograde. Even Team Rabbits’ ship, the most advanced in the fleet has to pull some pretty crazy maneuvers off just to escape to a safer distance. Amane is on the verge of ordering a suicide charge to ram the gate when cavalry arrives. It’s a reformed Doberman unit with Rakesh leading it. Somehow, someway, all the new units show up at once to help turn the tide.
The Earth forces now solidified and reformed, another attack is mounted, this time using the detachable bow of Team Rabbits’ ship as the spear head, guided by Toshikazu and pushed by Tamaki. Teoria finally arrives on the battle field at this very moment, declaring her existence to the Wulgaru fleet and asking them to retreat. It’s a move performed at the perfect time, spreading confusion, insubordination and chaos among the units without leaders. And this chaos allows Team Rabbits to spearhead the gate’s barrier control, therefore allowing the GDF to fire their Straggle laser again. For a moment, it appears that they have enough power to shatter the gate, but then Dolgana shows up and incapacitates two of the units used to power the massive laser. It seems that all remaining offensive options are lost to humanity. But old Commander Metalface will not yet have any of it. He informs the the fleet that he’ll use Star Rose itself (we all knew this was coming) to ram the gate. What is it about mecha shows killing off mentors and stoic old men?
End of Episode.
It’s hard for me to comment on an episode that is just one big, extended battle. Though significant things did happen aside from the expect explosions and laser showers that come with space battles. Probably most importantly, Izuru’s Red-5 has completely awakened. This is generally an optimistic show, so I still have hope that Izuru may survive, though from what we’ve been told, he should already be dead, and even if he survives he’ll be a changed person forever. Then there’s his whole obsession with heroes and being one. More often than not in stories, the hero dies.
I have to say, it looks like the the forces of Earth have taken a page from Team Rabbits’ playbook and started working together nicely. I was a little worried until the reinforcement units showed up, but it looks like they’re a competent fighting force finally. Then again, I suppose I shouldn’t praise them too much. After all, there’s really no where else to run. If they lose this battle then that’s the end for everyone. Still, I shudder to think how things could have turned out if Amane’s old superior was still running things. What a horrible thought.
With the stage completely set for this final battle and most of the obvious things (Izuru returning to the battlefield, Star Rose being used as a battering ram) out of the way; I do still wonder how this is all going to turn out. Though things did get pretty dour in this episode for a moment, I don’t think we’ll see a Gundam-style “Tears of Time” ending. Somehow I still hold out hope that Izuru and the rest of Team Rabbits and their support crew and officers survive. I still hope that Amane lives, too, despite all her suicidal tendencies (she’s determined to destroy that ship for some reason). And I’m interested to see if there’s any possibility for coexistence between the two races. While my hopes may lean towards that Macross-like conclusion, I have strong doubts about that possibility. After all, only Teoria has shown any signs of wanting any sort of peace with “lesser” species. Not a single other member of the Wulgaru has so much as given thought to that idea.
There’s only one episode left. It’s been quite the fun ride. I’m holding all my hopes, anxieties and opinions inside in anticipation of the conclusion of all of this next week.
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