The first Knights of Sidonia.
Wow. It feels like so much progress has been made in these last three episodes.
The Immortal Council
Masking her emotions.
Where to begin? Well, I think it appropriate to start with some of the back story that’s been revealed to us. The Immortal Council’s formal name and their immortality is made known. This wasn’t too much of a surprise, since those guys in the pods have always spoken with Captain Kobayashi as if they knew about all the history of Sidonia and had experienced it firsthand. The exact details of the immortality technology are not explained, but it appears to be some sort of combination of drugs and clones for backups in case anything does happen to the originals. That’s pretty big news if you ask me, and it makes me wonder why the council is keeping all this a secret. Surely an army of soldiers resistant to injury and aging would come in handy. They would not only be hardy but also have an infinite service life assuming they don’t fall on the battlefield.
Nagate begins his life.
Following up, we learn a lot about Nagate. He is a clone of his “grandfather,” Hiroki, and thus inherits the same resistance to physical harm. However, Kobayashi also had him modified to be genetically immortal without relying on drugs. Apparently this kind of genetic modification goes against the council’s rules, which again makes me wonder why they so insist on keeping it a secret. Sure, revealing that near-immortality is possible would make the concept of a seed ship sound ludicrous. But we must not forget that FTL is still not possible in the Sidonia universe so even if lifespan isn’t a practical limiting factor in interstellar travel, speed is. My guess is though, that the council just wants to keep immortality to themselves because they are selfish bastards. Which would also suggest that they have the same kind of immortality that Nagate has, explaining why they have outlawed it to anyone else.
Hiroki takes back his “child.”
As for Hiroki, it is shown that his strong sense of justice conflicted with Kobayashi’s willingness to do what is necessary regardless of sacrifices, and led him to rebel against her and the council. I’m not sure what he expected when he escaped into the bowels of Sidonia though, as it was inevitable that Nagate would one day venture to the surface and get caught by the authorities. And if Nagate ever does start displaying the same kind of defiance, I have no doubt that Kobayashi will resort to extreme measures to assure his obedience since she sees him as a very strong wartime asset. That said, it appears that the Captain does have some semblance of affection towards Nagate and Hiroki. It’s just that her own sensibilities won’t allow her feelings to get in the way of achieving her goals. In effect, she’s closed her heart off to others in order to make the kinds of cold, calculating decisions that she makes all the time. It must be hard to deal with giving the order that takes the lives of so many others if you remain sentimental, after all.
Fusion of man and Gauna.
Moving on, there is a lot to be said about the war with the Gauna. Firstly, we learn that the last time someone managed to throw out all the Kabizashis, Sidonia was almost completely annihilated by the Gauna. This would appear to disprove the claim that the Gauna only pursue the weapons since the Gauna attacked even though the Kabizashis weren’t on board. But then it is revealed that the very same person who disposed of the Kabizashis also developed a human-Gauna hybrid weapon which, while very effective at destroying Gauna, was difficult to control and ironically attract the very enemies it was created to fight. And the thing that specifically draws the Gauna is a special kind of radiation that both the Kabizashis and the hybrid emit. This explains the long-running mystery of the Gauna’s attraction to Sidonia and also addresses how the Gauna-Shizuka that Nagate and co. managed to capture constantly has her eyes on the location of the Kabizashis when she has no direct line of sight on them.
So now that we know this, surely it would be trivial for the Sidonia crew to design proper containment to prevent the radiation from reaching the Gauna? Our own civilization at present is nowhere near as advanced as the humans in Sidonia, and we are more than capable of containing concentrated radiation sources. Assuming that the Kabizashi tips and the body of the hybrid are the source of the radiation, it should be a cinch to keep it from leaking out of the seed ship. After all, it is the dispersion of small, hard to contain radioactive materials that is really dangerous. This is the same reason why properly function nuclear reactors and nuclear waste sites are really quite safe while nuclear reactors that have suffered a meltdown and nuclear waste sites that are leaking are a disaster. Evidently this isn’t the case though, so my only guess is that the Gauna-attracting radiation penetrates any kind of barrier thanks to sci-fi shenanigans.
I’ll pass on the tentacles.
Moving on, there is the elephant in the room of the Gauna-Shizuka. The big question is how much of the creature is Shizuka and how much of it is just a monster. According to Numi, she is nothing more than Gauna flesh, but clearly she is developing an advanced intelligence that was previously thought impossible from Gauna. She’s slowly learning to talk and write, partly from observing Nagate and partly on her own, which is considerably more communication humans have ever had with any other Gauna before. So far though, the Gauna-Shizuka’s words have mainly been restricted to Nagate’s name, so I suspect that perhaps the creature only possesses Shizuka’s dying memories of pushing Nagate out of the way as well as the rush of emotions she felt for him in that moment. And that kind of individual relationship does not necessarily mean that the creature won’t act violently towards anyone who isn’t Nagate.
In the end, there’s still too much unknown for us to draw a clear picture on what exactly is going on with the Gauna. But I have to say that is part of what makes Sidonia so good. It manages to build a highly fascinating universe and continues to tell an intriguing story while keeping us hanging. I just hope the payoff at the end will be satisfying enough with all this build-up. Speaking of the end, I will continue to assume that the show will end with the humans and the Gauna communicating and reaching some sort of understanding, allowing them to at long last end the centuries long war and find peace. That’s certainly what the build-up appears to be leading toward, and with the latest developments of humanoid and Gardes-type Gauna, this kind of resolution might not be too far away.
A giant Gauna approaches.