Tales of the Abyss Ep. 4: Hidden Truth

Well, another episode, another God-General down.  I still think Luke is amazingly useless and annoying (like we’re supposed to think), but it’s made up for by the general level of awesomeness of the rest of his group.  We’re starting to see that there is much more at play behind the scenes, though it’s nothing more than some basic groundwork for later explanation.  I am kind of surprised how quickly these God-Generals go down, however.  I was expecting…well, more of a fight, I guess.  Nevertheless, I’m still very excited with how things are progressing in the series, and this is probably now my second favorite show this season (beaten out by Kannagi).

Summary:

The group has retired to an inn to let Tear recover; fortunately, her recovery is very quick, as she can use healing artes as soon as she awakens.  While everybody jokes around with how close Luke and Tear have gotten, they still have the issue of getting to the Kimlasca borders.  Thankfully, Anise has written a letter saying that all is well, and Guy has arranged an ‘escort’ into Kimlasca, Van.

On the way to the border post of Kaitzur, the group continues to run into a plethora of monsters, against which Luke has no issue fighting.  At the border post, Anise is unable to get through without proper identification but is finally reunited with her ‘prince’ Luke.  Van also arrives in time to hear the group out after explaining to Tear that he had nothing to do with mobilizing the Six God-Generals against them.

Tear refuses to believe her brother and thinks Mohs wants peace, but stumbles her way into revealing her mission to locate the Seventh Fonstone, a fragment of the Score that Yulia hid away, and one of the reasons why Malkuth and Kimlasca countries have been at war with each other.  With that explained to the clueless Luke, the group heads through the checkpoints back into Kimlasca territory.  However, their transport was attacked by Arietta (under orders from Asch), one of the Six God-Generals, who orders Luke and Ion to come to Choral Castle if they want to rescue the only engineer capable of fixing the ship.

Disregarding Van’s orders to stay put and let him deal with Arietta, Luke and company depart for Choral Castle, the site where he was found after being abducted seven years ago.  On the way, Anise tries to grab Luke but instead grabs Guy, whose memory triggers a panic attack in the normally calm swordsman.  It’s pretty clear he suffers more from just gynophobia, and he’s unable to remember a very specific aspect of when his family died.

A monster swoops in out of nowhere and grabs Luke, taking him away deeper into the castle.  Arietta blocks Guy’s attempt to save Luke, and declares war on the remaining members of Luke’s party –  Arietta, for taking Ion away, and everybody else for killing her mother.  Ion reveals that Arietta lost her parents at a young age and was taken care of by animals, including the humongous liger queen that the group killed in Cheagle Woods.  While they have their standoff, Dist and Sync are busily analyzing Luke and opening his ‘fonim slot’, finally getting two CDs worth of data out of him.  Dist makes his getaway, but Sync stands by for a little longer.

Outside, Guy and Jade have quickly broken through Arietta’s monster army, and Anise’s puppet attack throws Arietta to the ground.  Ion forbids Jade to kill her, though, so the fight ends with Arietta’s capture.  Guy rushes to the ‘lab area’ to find Sync still watching over Luke in a strange looking machine.  Guy knocks off Sync’s helmet and is surprised by who is behind it.  Sync, however, makes his escape, leaving a very surprised Jade and Guy behind.  There is nothing left at Choral Castle, so the group returns back to the port, where the rescued engineer readies the ship and the group prepares to set sail.

Impressions:

  • I love this series, but I can’t help but notice the faults in it.  This entire episode had pretty much no continuity whatsoever to it.  It amazes me how the group just teleports in between large cities without much trouble.  I mean, they made it sound like Choral Castle was far away from the port, but they were there before you knew it.  I wish they’d give us a little bit of time on the journey the group makes instead of simply going “okay next place is (insert name here)”.  Kind of like the trip to Kaitzur.  At least let Luke be kind of useful for now, right?
  • Not many good Tear moments this episode (she does have that cute blushing face while she’s in bed), but Anise is just so much fun.  Any psychopathic little girl who has mood swings like that is bound to give some good chuckles, especially if she can switch between them in less than a second (“Watch your back” -> “OMG LUKE! <3”).  Plus she injects a lot of life and energy into the bunch, in stark contrast to Jade’s normally cool demeanor.
  • I was playing Guild Wars the other day, where there’s this huge overarching mission that encompasses a whole bunch of tiny missions.  This kind of has the same feel.  “Go rescue the engineer” is a tasks that’s part of “Learn the secret of Luke’s past” or something.  It’s almost eerie how RPG-ish this series really is.  If I didn’t know any better, I would’ve pressed a button to start cooking up some attack buffs.  Again, though, there needs to be a better sense of continuity with this show, it’s far too choppy for my tastes.  We even got a status screen for an ending instead of a real continuing story.  It’s nice art, but really should be left in an artbook or something.  Sunrise, get the story moving properly already!
  • For God-Generals, they sure fall fast.  Largo the Black Lion got run through pretty quick by Jade’s lance back on the Tartarus, and now Arietta falls handily despite her monster army.  Maybe Anise is just that much more powerful, but I’d like to be able to enjoy a really good fight somewhere in the future NOT named Asch v. Luke.
  • If you can’t tell who Sync really is, go look again really closely.  They gave it away too easily in my opinion, but hey, maybe people aren’t looking that closely.
  • Dist = Lloyd???  Seriously, consider the mannerisms here.  No, it’s not completely the same, but it evoked the comparison anyway.

Preview:

“The Chosen Heroes” has kind of a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

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2 Responses to Tales of the Abyss Ep. 4: Hidden Truth

  1. Setsu says:

    I can understand your problem with the continuity issue. In the original game, there were a couple of other stops and scenes in-between Tear recovering from her wound and the battle in Choral Castle. I expected this to happen, though, since even with 26 episodes to work with, I doubt they’ll be able to fit everything so in order to hit all the critical scenes, it was just easier for them to cut out the wandering. At least it’s better than the Tales of Symphonia OVA since they attempted to tell the game’s story in FOUR episodes and pretty much failed at it.

    As for Arietta, she’s not supposed to be a powerhouse. Yeah, she can own you in the game, but she always the part of the beast master/cleric, having her monster friends attack while either buffing their stats or healing/reviving them. She does have dark magic as well, but I guess they didn’t want to bother with that for this episode.

  2. fatimaabede says:

    sv, uf$ghgh;d
    hlhg uds

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