Aquarion EVOL 23

Did I say this show was getting bad? Because in one episode it proved itself to be a fucking masterstroke.

Okay. Um. So this episode was a huge expositionfest, and there was some new information and some actual plot developments. With that said, I think the text speaks for itself for a lot of this episode – the whole point seems to have been to explain things to the viewer in simple terms for once – and it’s not my style to recap the episode while blogging, but to elucidate, tlnote, and occasionally even speculate.

Reincarnations

So let’s go over this quickly in case someone comes by and doesn’t have experience in Aquarion. There’ll be some blogging and ranting involved.

ZEN is GEN. He hasn’t really changed. Also, we knew this like two episodes ago.

Crea is Rena, the blind wheelchair-ridden vampire Element that hung around DEAVA in the original series. I’m not sure what her deal is.

Mikono is Silvia, the love interest. I guess I should mention again, I seem to remember that Genesis of Aquarion was about Apollo and the other Elements developing cameraderie and trust (over and over and over…) and falling in love with Silvia was just part of that. This is part of why EVOL being so consumed by shipping bugs me so much. Pod Amata and Pod Zessica are just manifestations of that issue.

Amata is Apollo, the main character and alleged reincarnation of Apollonius, the Angel of Slaughter and pilot of the first Aquarion. (What issues does this show have with giant space babies?)

Apollo, as it turns out, was a space dog, who we are now finding out was in love with a human. Pollon was apparently in the OVAs (I haven’t watched them), but I don’t think they touched on this little quasi-bestial love triangle here.

Tangent: I have never really gotten why people get so mad that the Apollonius/Celiane love story isn’t getting consummated. It’s been 12,000 years. Apollo and Silvia are different people. Amata and Mikono are different people. EVOL features the ~legend~ heavily, and that’s fine – not many anime series that aren’t based on some mystery from X Years Ago – but sometimes, especially lately, I feel like it’s serving the reincarnation and myth drama too much and not paying attention to its existing human characters. You could say that’s what Zessica does, and what Amata says at least, but we know how it’s turning out for those two. Also, the relationship between Amata and Mikono is terrible and trying to give it weight by invoking Apollonius/Celiane or Apollo/Silvia feels like lazy telling-not-showing.

Also, where did Apollonius go?

Finally, Mikage is (an evil version of) Toma, who pursued Apollo for 26 episodes of Genesis thinking he was Apollonius reborn, and is now extremely mad that he was tricked into trying to seduce his lover’s dog.

The Twin Stars

God dammit. The 2ch spoilers were right all along and “Book of Genesis” was never true except in a trolling sense, but this is the first time it’s been made really explicit in the show itself. (“Genesis” and “Twin Stars” are pronounced the same in Japanese, and it was probably deliberate to confuse native viewers – and it obviously confused me too.) In the strictest sense, it should probably be “Twin Worlds” (星 means both “star” and “planet,” confusingly), but that would make it too obvious, and it doesn’t sound nearly as good. There’s one more reason:

“There’s Deneb, Altair, and Vega,” you pointed out the stars in the Summer Triangle…

If you want to know what this is about, here’s the deal. It’s been hovering in the background ever since the two worlds were Altair and Vega, but this episode brought it in clearly in a variety of ways – first with ZEN naming them Hikoboshi and Orihime, then Shrade building on the metaphor of two estranged lovers longing to meet again. The real Vega and Altair are stars, of course, so Twin Stars makes a little more sense.

But as the song says, there’s a third star in the triangle.

In this bit, ZEN holds up a red orb and a blue, talking about the lives of Apollo and Silvia, then produces a third yellow one to represent Toma. But those colors seem off to me. Red and blue don’t exactly represent Apollo and Silvia, but I’m sure they represent Altair and Vega. Now, it’s too late in the game to introduce a new entity – exposition episodes like this signal the climax approaching – but if yellow means anything, I’m betting on the golden Solar Aquarion.

I don’t think I understand the timeline in this show at all. The whole Vega/Altair thing apparently happened 12,000 years ago, but Altair has only been having issues fairly recently. 12,000 years is a terribly long time, even when not compared with the (let’s be generous) 50-odd years since Ianthe was developed to keep it running.

Zessica

The last leg of the episode heralded an end to a stretch of exposition and characters declaring things, and an impending transition back to stuff happening.

Oh, Zessica…

Anyway, the promise was to lend him her body. I don’t like these. It’s a personal thing – I just can’t stand it when characters are forced this way, and I especially have to avert my eyes when they’re blamed for or hurt by whatever someone did in their form. You know what was good at that? Star Driver. I miss Star Driver.

I think he needs a body because he can’t really pilot Aquarion in his spiritual form or whatever. As for why Zessica? There might be some in-show reason, maybe about her being vulnerable and able to be manipulated into a position where she’d let him in “willingly.” From the meta point of view, though, Mikage’s power has no narrative bounds, so this was deliberate, and I only hope there’s a point to it.

Misc

Speaking of things with a point, Shrade finally died. And not that the scene wasn’t absolutely lovely – gayness or no, I really felt for Cayenne. But his sacrifice was just to make sure Amata and Zessica didn’t miss out on the exposition, and then to push them to the next place they need to be. I was hoping he’d at least go out against something dramatic, instead of the enormous wall of plot information. At least he died doing what he loved: babbling in incoherent musical imagery.

Oh, and this happened. Sorry, I’m not really feeling it. Maybe it’s because I don’t really care about Mikono, or because I don’t really care about Pollon. Either way, this was supposed to be some kind of closure, and I’m not sure what I felt instead, but it wasn’t much good. Also, did Kagura stop speaking to her in reverse?

Pity poor Izumo. The man is full of dangling plot threads that I would love to see closed before more yammering about The Love Of Twelve Thousand Years, and in an alternate universe he could have been the hero, or at least B-character, of his own story. It sounds like he might have a slice of next week. I hope so.

And hey, speaking of interesting people we haven’t seen in a while who might be back next week when the plot starts moving again. The preview was a little jumbled, as EVOL previews always are, but I think we can expect some Cayenne-centric Shrade fallout (a little more of the “more characters, less plot” section) and an Izumo and Amata confrontation, which should be sweet. I’m not quite sure how Mixy will fit in amidst that and a lot of mech fighting.

…I keep feeling like I’m forgetting something?

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11 Responses to Aquarion EVOL 23

  1. exious says:

    Pollon was an extra in the OVAs, I watched them after this episode today and he was just there for character interaction.
    Also, being Zessica is suffering. I hope she gets SOMETHING after all the shit the show’s put her through.

  2. zodmaner says:

    This is a pretty fucking rad episode man.

    Like you have said, this show pretty much redeem itself with this episode.

    So basically Apollo (and by extension Amata & Kagura) is the reincarnation of Pollon? Oh God, that’s rich. Bravo, Kawamori, bravo.

    So the things that are still unexplained are where is the reincarnation of Apollonious and Zessica’s background and who she is the reincarnation of.

    Maybe she is the real reincarnation of Apollonious?

    Also, since Vegan & Altair are originally one planet, can we expected planet gattei ending?

  3. Lethe says:

    This Episode was pretty fucked up. Where the fuck did Pollon come from?
    Also the whole Pollon thing just don’t make sense; if Apollo was the reincanation of Pollon, how come he had ripped of wing marks on his back? Apollonius ripped of his own wings to save Celiane and that’s how they Identified Apollo as the reincarnation of Apollonius. Not to mention Apollo knew how to fly the aquarion machine… How could the reincarnation of a dog do (and remember how to do) that?

    And about Zessica; They never mentioned in EVOL that Celiane was actually reincarnated as two people; Silvia & Sirius, with Silvia being the good/light half with Celiane’s love for Apollonius and Sirius the bad/dark half.
    Mikage kept remembering Zessica about a promise (One she doesn’t remember and it wasn’t actually shown in the EVOL series) Which made me remember that Sirius did make a promise to Touma to help him, but in the end he didn’t stick to his promise. This could indicate that Zessica is the reincarnation of Sirius and thus also a reincarnation of Celiane.

  4. Woto says:

    Amusingly the whole Pollon thing closed up a personal plot hole from Sousei of why is Apollo a literal animal if he is a reincarnation of a Bi-sexual manly man while Sirius/Silvia were more or less exactly as Celaine was. Also possibility of OVA planet being Deneb I guess but I was hoping Vega was Sousei earth and Altair was OVA earth which would explain the lack of evolution of technology but I guess you can’t always get what you want especially if Kawamori is directing, I suppose I should just be grateful that Shrade’s melody was more than just a piano arrangement of Sousei no Aquarion and for the most part it’s own piece

  5. Edlar says:

    The 2ch spoilers were right all along and “Book of Genesis” was never true except in a trolling sense, but this is the first time it’s been made really explicit in the show itself.

    There is a problem to this. The cover of the giant book says Genesis in the weird Evol script.

  6. Kouri says:

    So I apparently need to rewatch the end of Genesis, because I thought Toma had already stated that Apollo wasn’t the true reincarnation of Apollonius, whose spirit actually resided in Aquarion.

  7. Hitomi (former drive-by commenter) says:

    OMG ahahaha. You know, this episode makes me have a whooooole lot more respect for the reincarnation trope as used in Aquarion, as it is A LOT more accurate to RL religious conceptions of reincarnation rather than the typical straightforward New Age-y “destined love” crap, which I detest because like you said, it’s *lazy*.

    TBH I’ve been thinking for a while that the main love polygon antics were made deliberately terrible in order to lampshade some of the silliness over all this fate/destiny stuff, although maybe that’s giving the writers too much credit. But basically I’m still waiting to see how it finally plays out, as I really do hope this is intended as a massive deconstruction. I mean, I don’t know how the original Aquarion series compares, but it’s not like Kawamori can’t do romance properly when he feels like it. That said, I think he dragged it out for way too long, even if it IS a deconstruction.

    And Zessica’s arc drives me nuts. The payoff better be worth it. -_-

  8. Kouri says:

    So apparently Pollon -was- in the Genesis series, if only briefly. Head to the 20 minute mark of episode 25: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v311/Pabloco/Aquarion25.jpg

    In that same episode, Toma pretty clearly says that Apollonius was reborn on Earth as Solar Wing Aquarion, so it’s possible that he was never reincarnated into a mortal form afterward.

    • So, Celiane’s subsequent reincarnations have been close to Apollonius and not know it. Perhaps this is the foreshadowing by Fudo when he talked about the donut disappearing.

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