Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse – 04

BETAs, gotta kill catch ’em all!

Ah, I watched this episode right after I did my entrance exam. It feels SO GOOD to watch anime after exam. There’s a sense of accomplishment when I did that. Anyhow, last time Yuuya and Yui didn’t get along well. I wonder if their relationship improved this week?

What the Hell, World?

One would think that having most of the population wiped out (primarily the males), the countries in this world would put aside their differences and unite to defeat the alien invaders, right? PLEASE. This is not Independence Day. First, there’s the blatant amount of racism in this episode, especially to the Japanese. The Americans really don’t like them for unknown reasons. In the original Muv Luv visual novel, Japanese aren’t so fond of America’s way of fighting. But really, the indirect hostility that exists between the two countries is because of culture difference between them. It can even be seen in the design of each country’s TSF (Japan’s TSF is more for close combat, and America’s TSF is more for shooting stuff at a distance). Second, there’s the evil depiction of Soviet Union when they captured Bridges. Well, they’re not shown as evil yet, but they will do anything to get the information they want. Let’s not forget the internal strife between Yuuya and Yui. These little details might be dramatized at times (especially the internal strife), but they served their purpose. They show the destructive side of human nature that can’t be changed even during hard times. Mankind, you’re so evil.

They would make Stalin so proud

Suspicious Military is Suspicious (And Other Military Stuff)

It wasn’t the focus of this episode (ok, partially), but the Soviet’s base is pretty fishy. The entrance to their base wasn’t shown, but Yuuya and Inia went through some dark underground passage, based by the lightning and so. Noting the amount of time they took to reach Inia’s room, it’s obvious that the base is pretty far from the main base. Now why would their base be that far? More like, is it Soviet’s base who’s far, or Cryska’s and Inia’s room? And if it’s the pilots’ room, why would it be that far? Even though this is a joint project, why are they excluded from the main group? Suspicious Soviet Union is suspicious.

Living underground? That explains her pale white silver hair

And speaking about suspicious, I’m still not over my suspicion on Project PROMINENCE, though that’s not what I’m going to talk about. Verdant and I had an interesting short discussion (please ignore all the flirting me and SushiGokart did) about the TSFs being used in Project PROMINENCE. Verdant doesn’t get why they would try to modify a flawed type such as Type-94 Shiranui instead of improving the promising mechas. I don’t get why they’re trying to improve Type-94 Shiranui instead of stacked-up boxes Type-97 Fubuki. Just look at some of the articles in the Muv Luv wiki:

The first domestic Japanese TSF, the Shiranui has been noted to have weaker thrust-to-weight ratio with their engines than American TSFs, making them fickle machines to foreign pilots not used to the controls.

The Shiranui features weaker jump units than their F-15 counterparts; as such, the Shiranui’s arms and head fins are integrated into the process of controlling the TSF as it rockets into the sky, or during landing.

“…most notable was its lack of space for improvement.

“The Shiranui’s limitation was not only evident in combat, but was also demonstrated by the Type-94-1C Shiranui Type-1C, where several were produced in 1998 as an attempt at upgrading Japan’s fleet of Shiranui.”

Type-94-1C Shiranui Type-1C

Reading all of those negative aspects of Type-94 Shiranui, I can only wonder, why bother trying to make a new Shiranui? Even if it’s improved, won’t it have a similar design with the original Shiranui? Then why? Why not improve Type-97 Fubuki? Annoying Yuuya was complaining about it being over-sensitive, but I suspect it’s about him not being used to Japanese TSF. From the wiki, Fubuki seems to for better for foreign pilots. Since this is a joint project, why not modify Fubuki instead and change its crappy boxy design? WHY SHIRANUI?

What the Hell, Main Characters?

Do these people actually work in the military? Because they don’t act like one. Well, this sentence is mostly for Ensign Yuuya Bridges. Character-wise, his prejudice against the Japanese is pretty understandable. Living in an environment where being Japanese is not something to be proud of, a second generation Halfling like Yuuya had it rough. His unsupportive family, especially his stressed mother, didn’t help much either.

What Not to Do as TSF  Pilot 101

But as a military soldier, Ensign Yuuya Bridges has been terrible. While his “fondness” of his Japanese boss, Lieutenant Yui Takamura, is understandable, the little effort he gave to make sure his “fondness” stays hidden cannot be tolerated. Being rude to one’s boss is not cool. Being rude to one’s own machine is also not cool. Instead of trying to understand how the machine works, he blames the machine itself for being foreign to the pilot. Well, duh, we’re talking about West and East here. Ensign Yuuya Bridges is an example of a bad pilot. He is openly rude to his boss, refuses to listen to his boss’ harsh feedback, and shows little effort of trying to understand his machine. How he’s still in one piece baffles me.

What she basically said was “YOU SUUUCCKKKK!”

While the problem mostly lies in Yuuya, Yui’s action is somehow unfitting too. Thanks to the first two episodes, Yui doesn’t come across as a bitchy superior. She has experience after all, and what she said is mostly right. Her cold attitude is because of her experience, so it can’t be blamed. In all sense, Yuuya definitely deserve those painful lectures. And seeing Yuuya’s attitude, Yui was right for giving Yuuya special attention. But that’s the problem right there.  Yui giving only Yuuya a hard time looks more like Yui trying to bully Yuuya. Why is Yui giving Yuuya and only him a hard time? Why didn’t she say anything about VG’s carelessness of falling into a trap during the last mock battle? What about Tarisa being too focused on Yuuya, forgetting the surrounding hence allowing Stella to shoot her? If only Yui interacts with the other soldiers, her conversations with Yuuya can be justified. But since all she did was rebuking Yuuya and Yuuya only, it can come across as bullying at times. Which, to be honest, is not good.

Why can’t I have a cute imouto like this

Only the fourth episode and I don’t like Yuuya Bridges already. No, it’s not because of his annoying personality. I find that tolerable. BUT he’s a soldier, and I don’t like soldiers who act like morons. Unfortunately, that’s what he’s doing right now. I want to give him a punch just for that unprofessional act of his. Though Yuuya’s moronic actions is the charm of this episode, somehow. I enjoyed seeing him being such an annoying character. Not an outstanding episode, but it’s definitely better than the previous episode. I hope next week will be better than this week.


Show ▼

Preview: Challenging his own boss in an unprofessional manner because this is anime. I seriously hope you get your ass kicked, Yuuya Bridges.

Muv-Luv Visual Novel: I’m grabbing it right now. I’ll be playing it as the anime airs.


Have read 418 BL manga and continuing.
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8 Responses to “Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse – 04”

  1. Highway says:

    Some thoughts about the upgrade path, based mostly on reading about the 97-Fubuki. First, it was also developed from the 94-Shiranui. So in developing the next one, if they use the 97, then they are also locking in many of the changes and likely compromises made to update the 94 to the 97. If they instead go back to the source of the 97, the 94-Shiranui, they likely feel it’s a better starting point and offers them more flexibility in future upgrade path. Also, the wiki mentions that the 97 was outperformed by the 94 in actual combat. So it’s at least plausible, from an engineering standpoint, that using the 94 as the starting point is a better decision.

    Now that all that stuff that they don’t actually bother with in the show, onto the less good part, the actual show! Yep, more of Ensign Jerk-ass. I actually didn’t have any problems at all with Yui dressing him down. And singling him out was fine by me, because the other pilots don’t have his crappy attitude, and the other pilots are the ones covering for his shortcomings. It never really strayed into ‘bullying’ from what I could see. There’s a legitimate problem: Yuuya’s attitude, and he’s not doing anything to fix it yet.

    On the racism / xenophobia thing, I am finding that it’s very helpful to watch this show through the nationalistic filter of “1960’s”, as if our 1970’s through present haven’t happened. That helps explain the upbringing of Yuuya, in a way that isn’t explainable if we assume he’s a 25 year old guy in 2001 in our universe. This also explains the Soviets, who pretty much acted like a 1960’s stereotype.

    All that said, this show is still lacking. The CG, if anything, has gotten worse. That flying over the laughable ‘forest’ of spaced out pine trees in the beginning and more plastic monsters. The characters still don’t fit with the backgrounds, and adding the facile stereotypes for characterization seems lazy.

  2. xRichard says:

    They show the destructive side of human nature that can’t be changed even during hard times. Mankind, you’re so evil.

    Yes! Thanks so much for not interpreting the message as a JAPAN BANZAI from the creators. The patriotism, nationalism, and xenophobia elements are there to explore a recurring theme in the Muv-Luv Alternative series: Human nature.


    The Fubuki is a training 3rd Generation TSF model. And the Shiranui is the 3rd Gen that is deployed to the front lines. I think there should be a big difference in armament somewhere.
    The question then: Why the Japanese Shiranui and not the American F-15? As Highway said it: Because the JPN TSF performed better in the front lines.

    Much better blog this week, agaaa. This was a pleasure to read. And thanks for Verdant’s view on an anime he’s not covering at RC.

    • xRichard says:

      Btw, now that you’ll be playing the VNs and wondering about why didn’t they anime it.

      Kouki (MLA writer and âge’s owner) turned down many offers to do it because many of them wanted to change many aspects of the story, such as the heavy political themes, to make it more accessible to a wide audience.
      So, he wrote Total Eclipse, a LN series set in the Alt-verse but more similar to Gundam in its nature, hence less risky. This is also why the budget is quite low. With Total Eclipse, they are testing the waters for the main trilogy.

  3. fragb85 says:

    To answer your questions, the Fubuki was built specifically as a training machine for trainees to get used for more advanced TSF. Its low-power and low-spec and is not meant to be taken to the front lines. Its pretty much why I find Yui’s criticisms laughable and out of context. She basically sent Yuuya in a machine which he is unfamiliar with on an anti-BETA exercise that a Fubuki is not meant to fight in. She really should have him started with basic maneuvering exercises.

    You are also in the mistaken assumption that the Shiranui is terrible. In fact, its a very effective TSF. The problem is that its complicated to use, meaning only experienced pilots canuse it. That makes deployment limited, since trained pilots are a limited resource. It also can’t be modified which isn’t a problem now because the Shiranui can match most modern TSF. But when new TSF technology is made the Shiranui won’t be able to incorporate them, meaning it would be left behind.

  4. BlackBriar says:

    That’s the problem with people about 85% (if that is accurate) of the time. They’ll never understand anything beyond what they see with their own two eyes, rejecting those who are different them and holding on to their preconceptions on others. It’s typical human nature.

    While Yuya’s flashback has given a sympathetic point of view because he was treated as an outcast for being half Japanese, it doesn’t excuse his present half-ass attitude. Yui may also be acting a little too high and mighty but she’s doing a good job of putting him in his place.

    Such a shady environment is always worthy of suspiscion. Considering Inia and Yuya came in and how Yuya was ambushed and imprisoned, it means he was close to finding something he shouldn’t have. If they’re hiding something from one pilot, they’ll hide it from the whole alliance.

    Yes, More Inia and Cryska. I’ll assume she didn’t give a damn if Yuya stumbled onto whatever the Soviets were hiding and she just wanted Inia away from him.

  5. Mitleser says:

    I love Yuuha Bridges.
    He is a fairly decent chap, who usually has to pay for his (many) mistakes as this episode demonstrated.
    I am glad he is rude to Yui and keeps annoying her. After all, he neither wanted to be transfered to the Yukon nor have to participate in the project to create the next gen. TSF for the Japanese or have to work with someone he can’t stand.
    There is only so much one can tolerate without trying to strike back.

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