Thank you offering me these small children as sacrifices. Your planet is safe now.
|Overcooled here, bringing you some Gatchaman coverage a few minutes before I have to dash off to class. Yeah, I usually write the intro last so I’ve been deceiving you all this time. Anyways, I’m pressed for time so let’s just go straight to the fun part!|
Bitch is gonna cut. you. up.
The all-out social media battle has turned into a more physical war now. Most of the episode is spent watching our titular heroes beat up the Neo Hundred. There is no killing involved because gosh, that would be awfully cruel to send people into comas. I find it amusing that Rui and Jou have been more physically wounded than any of the other enemies in the show. You would think the final war between aliens and the Gatchaman dudes would be a recipe for a bloodbath, but it hardly tops the brutality of Berg Katze slicing up Rui. To be honest, I was disappointed at how kid friendly this seemed. It was almost indistinguishable from a Saturday morning cartoon you’d watch with a younger sibling, complete with cheesy catchphrases and dramatic turns of events you can see a mile away.
There are so many aspects to this battle going on. It’s not just a humans versus aliens situation. There’s a social media element, and the ones doing all the damage are the actual residents of the planet – humans. It’s a complicated state of affairs where the solution isn’t just “beat up the bad guys.” That’s why I felt cheated when this episode played out in such a cliche manner. You’re doing something wrong when an army of invisible monsters destroying the city is portrayed in a way that isn’t frightening at all. The whole terrorism thing is treated far too casually. The amount of panicking is minimal, and no one seems too fussed about aliens invading the planet. The biggest offender here is Hajime, whose optimism is actually a bit offensive in this situation. It almost looks like she’s happy they’re demolishing the city (which isn’t the case, but boy does it ever look that way). Her constant grins and the playful way the other Gatchaman engaged in battle made it really hard to take the threat seriously.
Once again, Berg Katze copies Hajime’s peace-scissor gesture as well as her manner of speaking
Although her conversations with Berg Katze are interesting, they’re still far too playful instead of ominous given the current standings. Hajime is optimistic, that doesn’t mean she shouldn’t be incapable of showing fear or anxiety. As much as I like how she’s always right, I dislike how she’s sometimes cheery in the face of danger. The fact that BK is invisible should be very alarming, but she’s so nonplussed about it that I almost forgot completely about it until I went to take screencaps. Does BK really exist then? Or is he simply a concept brought to life by parasitically infecting others? We’re missing something important here.
Hajime aside, I’m not too pleased with how they resolved Paiman’s terrible leadership and Jou’s depression either. These were complex issues that were resolved a bit too simply and conveniently for my liking. While I liked the idea of Paiman chatting with the Prime Minister, the conversation went downhill very quickly. It repeated the same point over and over. At one point OD accuses the Prime Minister of being scared and the camera cuts to Paiman looking shocked…and stays there. It’s as if they’re saying “DO YOU GET IT? DO YOU MAKE THE CONNECTION? HOW ABOUT NOW? DO YOU GET IT?!” which doesn’t allow you to draw any conclusions yourself. It’s just shoved down your throat. The kindergarten thing was also an incredibly cheesy way to end that poorly-written conversation.
Jou’s issues weren’t resolved much better. The notebook ever so perfectly blowing in the wind made me roll my eyes until I could see my brain floating around in my skull. I’m glad he recovered quickly but, uhhh, will they ever explain why he wanted to commit suicide? That’s kind of a big deal, you know. I was so worried about him and then all he does is read a page of sappy words and BOOM, he’s ready to hop over fences and fly around like superman. His exit was simultaneously the dorkiest thing ever and somehow kind of cool, mostly because of the music. The music is really what turns those corny moments into something so fun that you can just accept it. Sugane spouted some particularly geeky catchphrases about justice, but with that sweet music in the background – could you blame him?
I wasn’t a big fan of this episode because it really felt like a kid’s show, and that’s not good after they spent all this time developing adult ideas. I wanted to get into the fights, but for the most part they felt inconsequential. No one was worried at all, so I didn’t feel like I had to worry either. It was just robots bopping little TV-heads on their noggin and harvesting their cube-shaped husks. It lacked excitement for the most part. Even Utsutsu-chan’s transformation didn’t do it for me. Not only is her mecha ugly as sin, but she has the exact same powers as she does when she’s just running around in a bikini. She used her death arm only once, despite the fact that it is the coolest weapon ever. All you have to do is touch someone. How have they not formulated a plan to just throw her onto Berg Katze so she touches him and he dies?
Speaking of Burger King, his scenes were really the life of this week’s episode. I still think he’s a horrible person and can’t wait to see him die, but he’s always interesting. I loved seeing him ever so slightly stir the pot and then watch from the sidelines as his little prompts invoked ultimate mayhem. It’s the little things he does that ruin people. I especially liked the way he released Umeda’s personal info and basically let him know he was used, just like Rui. It’s more dark concepts like these that I think this show needs – not devolving into some super sentai finale where the power of ~love and friendship~ saves everyone. Berg Katze single-handedly made it so this guy is a wanted terrorist. Although, to be fair, he is kind of a dick. In fact, the whole Neo-100 are even worse than I imagined.
The Neo-100 are not misguided souls blindly listening to Umeda’s demands. They are all scumbags who delight in abducting celebrities and molesting high schoolers on the subway. The lowest of the low. They are willing to kill the Prime Minister in order to get a power upgrade so they can continue using CROWDS for selfish things like that aforementioned subway skirt-flipping. It’s more believable than everyone obeying Umeda all the time, and 100x more despicable. I really hope X smartens up soon. There have been a lot of hints that X is beginning to catch onto Berg Katze’s trick, and I think Rui might try to reach out to his digital friend. If he can regain control of X, he should be able to stop Berg Katze from using GALAX to mass distribute his power. Once they stop the Neo-100, there’s still the issue of defeating the end boss…Big Daddy BK himself.
I hope the ending doesn’t suddenly simplify all of these wonderful concepts into FRIEEEEENDDDDSHIIIIPPP and the like. There are only 2 episodes left, so it can’t all be mindless fist fights with dramatic catchphrases being yelled all the time. Let’s hope for the best, just like Hajime would. Gatcha~
Bonus Screenshots:Show ▼
“This is chickenshit, you totally said we’d get ice cream. FUCK YOU, DAD.”