Gate – 09-10

Gate 09

Looking good~

I’m not particularly taken by these last two episodes, so I’ll keep this post relatively short.




Gate 0901

Don’t peep on Rory!

The gist of things is that the gang go to a hot springs inn, where they come under attack from agents of the US, China, and Russia. As we might have suspected, the situation ends with the antagonists obliterated thanks to Rory’s talents and some clever political and social maneuvering. Perhaps I missed the memo, but I don’t really understand the actions of the other countries. What exactly does kidnapping a special region native do for them? It’s not like doing so will directly grant them access to the other side of the gate; the story would have to come up with some convoluted way to connect the dots. So it seems more like the international powers were made to attempt the kidnapping simply to provide some action during the gang’s time back on earth. Which is honestly a flimsy bit of story-telling.


Gate 1001

Itami’s ex-waifu.

I will say that I did enjoy the special guests’ reactions to the “spectacle” on our side of the gate. From BL doujin to fancy clothing, libraries, hot springs, and even vending machines, there was no shortage of surprises for the other-worldly troupe. And the brief stint with Risa was also great for providing us with more insight into Itami’s character outside of his military life. The guy may be kind and amiable, but is actually dense when it comes to the feelings of others. I would like to believe that he’s actually pretending not to notice others’ true feelings given his excellent handle on situations when it comes to battle. But that may just be me giving him too much credit.

Gate 0902

Great view.

I guess I should also talk about the “Rory incident,” since some might consider that the elephant in the room. Quite honestly, the whole sexy time cop-out is predictable and uninspired. Obviously nothing was going to happen between her and Itami. But I suppose it was a questionable means to segue into some more revelations about demigods and Rory’s condition. The show may be suggesting that Rory did not become a demigod by choice, and does not appreciate her current situation. Sure, she’s extremely powerful and all but immortal. But she will eventually lose her earthly desires when she ascends to godhood, and her current form of immortality does not mean she is immune to harm. Plus, she’s stuck with this inconvenient soul-channeling at the behest of her patron god, which somehow acts as an apparently powerful aphrodisiac. I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t call getting turned on by the passing of nearby people a desirable thing.

Next week the gang return to the other side of the gate, so hopefully things will get interesting again. I’m looking forward to Piña’s attempt to mediate peace between the JSDF and the Empire. That’s sure to stir up conflict between her and her father, whom I can only presume to be the “final boss” of the show. But first, it looks like we might have to deal with some elvish visitors. Perhaps this will be Tuka’s chance to shine?

Gate 1002

A moment of silence.



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29 Responses to “Gate – 09-10”

  1. skylion says:

    LOL. The “Elephant in the Room”….Perhaps that is the authors way of sticking it hard to the roricons, “Sure, it’s nice, ain’t it you guys, but that way lies DEATH!”

    But yeah, complex plot with no real underpinnings is pretty plotless. Nice to see they are going back to the other side next episode.

    They should have brought Risa…she’s kinda awesome.

  2. Rathje says:

    The point of the foreign countries was the author’s attempt to show that the Japanese military are heroes, and China, Russia, and the USA are ruled by douchebags.

    The guy is obviously heavily nationalist and pro-military.

    He’s the sort of guy who, if he were an American, would be voting Libertarian, stockpiles guns and ammo in his basement, is a survival nut, raves about UN black helicopters on Facebook, and thinks all the problems in Syria could be solved with enough good men and ammo.

    And has ALL of Tom Clancy’s novels and loves them to death.

    Oh well, whatever, I’m still enjoying the show anyway.

    • skylion says:

      I agree that the anime is worth watching, but the way you describe the author means that any one of my neighbors could have written it…which is both fascinating and weird…

    • IreneSharda says:

      Yeah, I could tell that when they decide to make all the other special ops teams completely pathetic amaturs but the Japanese special ops were the greatest soldiers in the history of anime. *rolleyes*

      I’m sorry, even if you’re trying to prop up your own military, at least make it a believable fight. I can understand the JSDF roflstompping on the Empire’s forces because of the huge gap militarily. However, when you decide to do the same thing to other first world military groups that are at least on your level or arguably better? Yeah, it just doesn’t work anymore.

      • Painboy says:

        This bugged me too. Honestly I had less trouble with JSDF dick stroking than the fact the a US Special Forces guy would say something about how great the JSDF SF guys are. I doubt any remotely professional soldier would ever say that much less even say it out loud.

        At first I thought the show was just pumping up the JSDF to give them some good smacking around later on (which they then overcome or the like). I’m worried now that it’s just going to be curbstompings from here on out which is going to get dull quickly as it completely drains the tension. A hero is only as good as his enemies.

        • Highway says:

          I think you may have misunderstood the show from the beginning. I figured it was going to be no contest from that first fight in episode 2, when 30,000 guys got massacred on foot and horseback by artillery and machine gun emplacements. Follow that up with the ‘fight’ at Italica. That’s the way this show is. It doesn’t gain tension from putting enemies up for fights. It’s about the character interactions.

        • Rathe says:

          A one-sided curb-stomp doesn’t have to be boring.

          Log Horizon anyone? The REAL plot was that while the “adventurers” were completely OP – just being stronger than the other side doesn’t mean you’ll be able to manage the affairs of the world properly.

          The recent Iraq War was a curbstomp. It was managing the freaking country afterward that was the real problem.

        • Painboy says:

          So I may have. I always seem to forget Japanese productions don’t have the same priorities as western productions when it comes to narratives. It’s like you said they care more about character interaction than narrative flows or curves.

          I still keep coming back to the Flight of the Valkyries scene (2nd battle with the music) though. It’s really odd how that was done. Over the years there have numerous parodies and a few homages to that scene. It’s usually played for laughs even though the original is brutally serious. So for Gate to play that scene completely straight was strange. In the original the guys playing the music weren’t really the “good guys.” That was kind of the point of the scene. The music was used almost like a terror weapon.

          So when the creators make a direct reference to that scene, while playing it straight, it’s hard for me to wrap my brain around the fact the JSDF are the good guys coming to save the day. For me it felt more ominous rather than triumphant.

          Of course had I seen this when I was 15 I would have totally nerded out over that scene without a second thought. Any “deep” artistic or philosophical meanings being of little importance.

          • Highway says:

            I think that the primary twist in meaning of that original scene comes later, with Kilgore standing on the beach, saying “I love the smell of napalm in the morning” and then inducing the other characters to surf with the background of smoking huts and death.

            And if the same thing was used in a situation where the helicopters *did* belong to the good guys, where they were the ones coming to the rescue, does it change the imagery? One can argue that there was a bit of a massacre even after that, but does it rise to the level of atrocity?

            Plus, I have to say that I’ve heard that scene referenced and even quoted straight and approvingly in an “isn’t that awesome!” way *far* more than as the indictment of force that it is.

          • Rathje says:

            I’ll be honest, I love that scene from Apocalypse Now, so I was kind of fanboying when the music started, and….

            It was OK… sort of.

            I mean, I thought the overwhelming display of military superiority was cool.

            But the attempts to quote lines from Apocalypse Now were kind of derpy. It was just fanboying without real understanding of what the actual movie was about.

            And after watching the episode, I just had to go on YouTube and watch the original – which just cemented in my mind how much better the scene in the movie was than the anime tribute.

            Which isn’t really the message you want to leave with your viewers.

            Combine it with whats-her-face abandoning her firepower advantage to do a stupid bayonette charge against soldiers equipped for close combat, and… it left me just thinking the whole thing could have been soo much better if they’d just let me direct it instead (yeah right).

    • Di Gi Kazune says:

      Welcome to the Greater Eastern Co-prosperity Sphere!

    • Di Gi Kazune says:

      And has ALL of Tom Clancy’s novels and loves them to death.

      I have quite a substantial collection and love them to death. I like them because its called “How the F you should use your substantial and well-trained military forces and screw the F*balls in Congress and elsewhere.” Seriously, my favourite part of the Jack Ryan series? Where a 747 fireballs a certain place full of useless wankers and they restart with a clean slate.

      • Rathe says:

        Don’t get me wrong – I ate up the Tom Clancy stuff in high school. Hunt for Red October was one of my favorite movies as a young man – still is. I mean, I thought the one where the protagonist redeems a prostitute and then goes on a macho killing spree once she’s killed was dumb as a bag of hammers, but still….

  3. Wanderer says:

    The behavior of the other countries can be explained, but it automatically assumes that said countries are already antagonistic with Japan to the point effectively being enemies who just haven’t declared war on each other yet. In reality if the US wanted to speak to the visitors from the special region, they would just request that Japan allow them to do so, and given that the two countries are allies they’d probably have gotten the OK. There are plenty of other things beyond merely speaking with them that these people might have wanted, but again those are generally hostile actions which, realistically, these particular countries would refrain from committing.

    Doesn’t matter. For me the whole point of this segment was to see Rory be awesome, especially since they censored her fight at Italica, and it succeeded at that point fairly well, I think.

  4. Highway says:

    It’s not exactly new for the US, China, and Russia to be portrayed in pretty bad light in Japanese fictional media. It’s actually much harder to find an anime where the US, Russia, or China is present and ISN’T an antagonist. So I took this as just your typical dig at these other countries. Yeah, it was derpy, but since the people in the Special Region aren’t good enough ‘bad guys’, you have to have some actual bad guys.

  5. IreneSharda says:

    An interesting set of episodes. I like all the girls, but honestly, I really could do the show without them too. Honestly, I’d be fine if we just concentrated on Itami and his troops. I did like the see his ex-wife, and actually I liked their relationship more than that between him and any of the girls. I really hope that eventually they begin again and perhaps get back together.

    I don’t know how Pina is going to negotiate peace, especially with her father who is trying to increase his hold on the Empire.

    The action was good but it was almost an obnoxious pro-JSDF thing at expense of the plot and the story, so I was only okay with it.

  6. zztop says:

    Considering the effort the author put into demonizing the USA, China & Russia, I’m just surprised he hasn’t made the Koreans the bad guys yet, for being “a bunch of overpatrotic upstarts which we Japanese used to own”, or something similar.

    • zztop says:

      Note:Especially given the intensity in Japan/Korea diplomatic relationships over their colonial issues.

      • Painboy says:

        Rightly or wrongly I don’t think the Japanese see Korea as enough of a major power to be included.

        Also from my own interactions with both the animosity level is heavily on the Korean side, understandable given earlier Japanese predations. The Japanese don’t like Koreans but Koreans hate the Japanese.

      • Rathje says:

        I still find it really telling that I’ve never seen a Japanese anime even acknowledge the common practice of Japanese parents investigating potential fiances to find out if they have any Korean ancestry with the aim of preventing the marriage if there is any.

        That was actually a fairly common practice at least back in the 1990s. It may have abated somewhat, but the fact that I’ve never seen a Japanese show deal with the issue at all speaks volumes.

  7. skylion says:

    RE: Politics and Armed Forces….

    An interesting and friendly reminder of the MST3K Mantra…

  8. BlackBriar says:

    Always a pleasure to see Rory on a rampage and thankfully, this slaughter was less restrained than back during the fight in Italica. But in all honesty, the two events should’ve had the opposite effect. In any case, I agree with Itami in liking Rory for her personality. These mass murdering women always tend to be alluring and manage to cloud a person’s judgment.

    Russians and Chinese aside, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to see America portrayed as a greedy, antagonistic country. That’s been done a number of times it’s become more or less expected in any anime with military elements if the story’s world takes place on Earth. Why they’re so insistent on kidnapping the visitors is something I don’t think will be brought to light until somewhere in the second half of the series when things escalate.

    Odds are Pina’s peace talks will fall on deaf ears. I just don’t see that selfish pig of a father of hers agreeing to anything he might find won’t benefit him. At the moment, it will look like the Empire losing ground in the exchange.

    • Alexandre Martins says:

      Totally agree. That ‘s what I thought when Ms. Colada (refreshing, isn’t she? Is she a Dragon Ball character?) said about the peace treaty. Her greedy (albeit smart within his limits) father won’t ever agree to that. He already looks down on Piña, seeing her as just a little girl who wants to play with toy soldiers. And I don’t think he has a full measure of the JSFD’s military superiority, and is likely to close his eyes to it when push comes to shove.

    • Alexandre Martins says:

      Oh, and I loved Piña going on about “I didn’t know OUR world had things like that”, when she was finding out about yaoi manga. And her aide correcting her, “Princess, this is not our world.”

    • Alexandre Martins says:

      I LOVE Rory. Except for Satsuki from Kill la Kill, she’s the most alluring anime female I’ve ever seen.

  9. Rathje says:

    Anyone remember that movie Patlabor 2?

    There’s a scene where things have gotten out of control with Japan nearly under marshal law in reaction to acts of terrorism.

    In a scene where the MC and the conniving member of military intelligence are talking, the intelligence guy lets drop that the United States government has told Japan that if they can’t get control of the situation, the US will intervene militarily. The MC expresses shock, and the intelligence guy says ominously:

    “It’ll be just like after the war – Japan will have to start all over again.”

    Anyone else remember that line?

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