Well…it didn’t exactly pan out the way I sort of expected. I guess the producers didn’t want to be pulling on so many emotions at the same time. Or maybe they’re just delaying all the sadness and sorrow until the next episode, when we pile it all on our favorite singer-turned-scapegoat. In any case, this could have been a real emotional turning point, but it seems like the producers took the entire thing tongue-in-cheek. We’ll see how things turn out as we near the end of the series.
Ozma reflects on the past ten years with Ranka, and vows to protect her dreams no matter what. He returns to talk with Cathy, who after putting Michel and Alto through some ridiculous training exercises, mentions that the whole ‘plot’ must be done by an implant-assisted person: that is, a person from Galaxy. Ozma is not amused that Ranka is needed to fight the Vajra, since the reaction warheads have proven effective already. Still angry, Ozma walks away, but not before asking Cathy if she remembers how to make some pineapple cake. Almost simultaneously, Michel is on to Luca being in on something big as he notices him getting into an unmarked vehicle, much to Klan Klan’s dismay.
Alto, meanwhile, is stuck trying to climb into Ranka’s window because the bodyguard detail is lame and won’t let him in through the front door. Ranka isn’t used to being alone with another guy, and stumbles over words before running away to get some refreshments. Afterwards, Alto reassures Ranka that the experiment’s results were for the best, since it makes everybody’s life easier when they’re fighting the Vajra. Obviously relieved, Ranka vows to continue singing, and Alto agrees to show up to her first live performance.
At LAI, Leon is in deep discussion with Leon over the fold quartz, a crystal with almost magical properties, but can only be made by the Vajra. Leon surmises that the Owner, Richard Bilrer, is actually the one funding Leon and LAI operations in order to create a monopoly on interstellar shipping and travel. The fold quartz’s properties would be enough to apparently create such a monopoly; however, Leon, perceptive as he is, is somewhat off from the truth, a fact that is confirmed by yet another character (who’s name currently escapes me).
In the sewers underneath the government building with lots of Vajra corpses, Ozma readies his pistol to charge in to a hero’s death. However, he is stopped by Brera, and the two get into a knife fight, as things were too close range for a good gunfight. Although both fight to a draw, it’s evident Brera could probably kill Ozma; thankfully, Skull-1 is saved by a call to sortie against a Vajra attack. Both put aside their differences and head out to meet the alien threat.
Still pissed off, Ozma takes it to the Vajra, with NUNS and SMS ships unleashing lots and lots of reaction warheads. However, the Vajra have adapted and come full force, shredding the NUNS ships to little pieces. A Vajra makes a beeline for the Quarter but is intercepted by Ozma, who will protect his little sister and the “woman he fell for” with missiles, guns, and knives if need be. Brera is unconvinced, but provides a little bit of covering fire (for once) while the SMS go at it with energy blades.
After their triumphant return to Frontier, everybody is at Ranka’s live performance, and Cathy is still reeling over Ozma’s comments over the radio. However, she invites him over to her apartment after the concert. Only problem is, she doesn’t notice Ozma has bled out…
Thankfully it’s not enough to kill him, however. Ozma begins his recovery in the hospital, and promises Ranka a pineapple cake when he gets out. Sheryl, in another part of the hospital, is incredibly annoyed with Grace, and there is some discussion to be had between the two. While everything’s going on, however, some weird eggs start hatching, and there are some confused faces at SMS.
From the preview in episode 16, this could have been some serious business. Ozma and Cathy are finally making some good headway into their investigation into Leon’s dealings, and looks like they got a side bonus out of it too. Honestly, a lot of people saw that one coming though; Cathy is much warmer to Ozma than Leon, who is a stone cold killer who probably deserves to be with someone as “scary” as Grace.
First things first – this episode has a Ranka OP, ‘Seikan Hikou’. Here’s the YT link if you’re so inclined:
It comes with free Kira~☆!
I guess the producers aren’t ready to make a serious thing out of the series yet. Yes, it’s had its moments of drama and all, but this entire episode seemed very tongue in cheek. Certainly the plot advanced, but not by much. Ozma and Cathy’s research? Hardly anything to write home about. Ranka continues to sing, but we still don’t understand how/why it affects the Vajra. The fold quartz? Yes, there is now some background to it, but it remains to be seen exactly how they will be used. After all, Leon seems to be working a different angle than what Bilrer wants to do.
Another thing: who’s really in charge of LAI? I am now sort of confused. Seriously, on my first run through I thought Grace had managed to disguise herself. Weird.
Anyway, it was an interesting episode because it always had that feeling someone was going to kick the bucket in the next 24 minutes. How could you possibly miss the signs? The episode title seemed like a blatant revelation that Ozma was going to die. Alto’s paper airplane got shredded. Ozma was continuously shown with his gun and with a firm will to protect Ranka no matter what. Finally, he bled out AT A CONCERT. As Michel pointed out, that would have been some serious emotional stuff. But nope, looks like we have to wait another day to see how things unfold even more.
However, I am now convinced of the fact that Sheryl isn’t going to get anywhere. Yes, Alto clearly cares too much about Ranka. Given that Sheryl had maybe 10 seconds in this episode, and the preview wasn’t very good for her, she’s probably been reduced to that third role behind the leading couple. It’s kind of sad to see that fast-paced degradation, but with things heading into the final stretch, I guess it’s time to end this nonsense about a love triangle.
Poor, poor Sheryl. Beaten already, and now she’s practically left for dead ;_;