Aquarion EVOL 25

This one was awful.

I can’t even say, like, “the last time I thought an episode was unequivocally awful was a while ago” because it wasn’t. The one where Amata and Kagura yell at each other was awful, and the one about Zessica turning stupid was also terrible. (I’d like to add 14 and 15, but even though they were the fulcrum for the show’s fall, they were still all right on their own merits and flaws.)

Nor can I say “I don’t even care” because apparently I have a lot of things to say to this show right now. I think I don’t care about the show itself, but it makes me mad that I don’t care about it.

There was one good thing about this episode, and even it was marred by some utter bullshit.

Let’s take it from the top.

Amata and Kagura

So apparently on top of everything else there’s some shit about how they represent Vega and Altair. I thought Vega and Altair were lovers, or Apollo and Silvia, or something. Also, if they come together, uh, bad shit happens? (More about this below.)

By the way, Amata made another Pod Amata quick-change. You can tell because he’s super mad at Kagura about his parents, but as soon as Kagura says “smelly wench” he forgets all about them, and they start trying to kill each other for a girl that isn’t even there and generally rehashing episode 22. Kagura is his own pod version, but I think there was a non-pod Kagura way back in the first episode, before he smelled Mikono. (Mikono ruins everyone. It’s incredible.)

Amata, Kagura, and Mikono

I’m not going to write another five paragraphs about how Mikono is nothing but a trophy for the dogs to fight over. But I would like to point out that she doesn’t even need to be conscious for half the episode. And when she does wake up, she’s immediately put into a box. (More about this below.)

And I’m sorry, Amata likes Mikono not because he’s Pollon but because she’s a nice girl full of empathy and kindness and caring? Did these people watch the same first ten episodes I did? The ones where Mikono curled up in a corner, snubbed Zessica’s literal extended hand of friendship and dropped guilt on Amata at every turn?

She still doesn’t deserve a screenshot.

(By the way, being consistent and graceful with the “can’t speak up” angle with Mikono might have made her work, but pre-Pod Yunoha already did that much better.)

Andy and Mix

Fuck. I want to be happy for these two, but like I said last week, this got dragged out way too long and even this scene seems like it’s just going through the motions to finish the subplot the way everyone knew it would end. I can barely even get mad that Andy was denied his Union yet again. On the other hand, they’re probably going back to the boys’ dorm to kill each other all night long. Also, there’s only one Aquarion available, Amata needs it, and these two would have stolen the show from him.

Maybe this is how Shrade-not-carers used to feel. I dunno. I was one of the ones who thought Shrade’s plot was on a slow landing course and actually building up for something. Andy’s ending was telegraphed from almost two months away and never had any buildup or tension.

Anyway, I’m still relatively okay with this, if only because Andy alone of all the Pod Lovers (Amata, Zessica, Yunoha) has broken out of his pod and managed to be in love without losing all his personality. Mix, sadly, doesn’t count because at this point she’s not even a pod person, just the light at the end of Andy’s tunnel, as Mikono is to Amata (eugh). Which is yet another shame, because the original Mix and Andy dynamic was great precisely because it incorporated their personalities and how they’d naturally complement.

(The saddest thing is that on the anime cliche romance scale, this is actually a step down from “opposites attract” and “plucky guy woos angry girl”.)

Mikage and Zessica

You’re welcome for the screenshot.

I’m a tiny bit mad that Zessica effectively doesn’t exist for the second episode in a row. Now, I’ve been a little inconsistent, here and also with myself, on how I feel about Zessica’s character, uh, “arc.” I mean, I liked early Ace Zessica, and in the grave episode she got quietly switched out for Pod Zessica, and ever since I’ve been simultaneously lamenting Zessica’s change and her treatment.

Anyway, what I realized is: I’m kind of fond of Pod Zessica too. Sure, she’s a boring pod character, and dares wear Ace Zessica’s design and voice, but hey, she’s legitimately pitiful and doesn’t deserve all the show has thrown at her. I would say Pod Amata doesn’t either, what with losing his parents and all, but we’ve seen that Pod Amata doesn’t give a shit about his parents.

I still want Ace Zessica back, and Hero Amata, and Shy Yunoha, and Bro Andy, and goddamn this show’s writing.

Mikage and Aquarion

TLnote first: Aku – or, in this case, Aq – is Japanese for “evil.”

(fyi: “Below” starts here.)

Anyway, yes, this badass machine was the one good thing in this episode, but it’s also a symbol of what might be the worst thing about this episode. No, not the pod people drama. It may be manufactured and cheesy, but it still exists on its own terms and I can handle that, grudgingly. (I can’t believe this episode has actually made me wish for the pod drama.)

No, the terrible thing is that Mikage just swoops out of nowhere halfway through the episode, completely nullifies the pod drama with his omnipotent plot powers, removes Zessica, Mikono, and Kagura from play, and sets himself up as a final boss for Amata to go up against to finish his journey.

This is actually the tip of an issue iceberg that is Mikage’s total detachment from anything else that’s happening. There’s a bunch of love drama going on, for better or for worse, that is completely detached from Mikage’s plan. All the characters run around having soap opera events, and meanwhile Mikage just sort of sits and chuckles to himself about the Wings of the Sun and the infinite power of zero and how the puzzle will soon be complete, occasionally waving his finger to push the storyline a bit.

Seriously, go look. We just sat through episodes and episodes of is he the reincarnation, is he not the reincarnation, are they in love, are they not, will they kiss, what did the kiss do, who will she choose, etc. etc. etc. etc. and then Mikage and Zen step in and go whoops no go fight the demon robot and save the world.

A maybe related issue is that there’s no real opposition to, well, anything, other than sheer inertia. Nothing specific is keeping the main triangle alive other than storyboarding. Nothing specific was keeping Mix from regaining her memories and falling back into Andy’s arms other than pacing. And no one is opposing Mikage, not only because they physically can’t because he’s magic, but also because no one knows or cares until he jumps out from behind the curtain and says he wants to destroy the world. (Izumo’s, however, was a good conflict, which got tragically trashed.)

So now Amata is going to fight the demon robot, declare his love for Mikono the Macguffin, and probably this is going to somehow solve everything. He may get combined with Kagura, making episodes and episodes of blather about love and fate vs. free will and living in the present an enormous joke. With a bit of luck, someone is going to get sacrificed.

(Study question: would it be better or worse if, instead of what I just said, Fudo zipped in and fixed everything somehow?)

If I’m wrong about this, no one will be happier than me. But it still won’t erase the trainwreck that has been going on since episode 15.

Oh yeah, and Fudo might be Apollonius, but seriously, I don’t give a shit at this point. There’s a lot to be written about reincarnation drama and how it affects writing, but I’ve written way too many words about this already.

This was a really long, really jumbled post. Sorry. After the show ends, I might try and organize my thoughts into a reflection on the show as a whole.

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9 Responses to Aquarion EVOL 25

  1. zodmaner says:

    Thank you for you and everyone at gg for you guys efforts once again.

    Sad to see that you didn’t enjoy this last couple of episodes (I’m enjoying all the trolls, asspulls, and insanities of Kawamori so far).

    Looking forward to what Fudo/Appollonious would do in the final episode.

  2. Anonymous says:

    >ancient evil has awakened

    BTW What are you subbing next season?

  3. Given how Aquarion has all sorts of mythology references, I think Fudo might just be created by Apollonius just before he dies using his feathers, there is a chinese god that would pluck 1 of his hair and use his hair to create temporary clones of him, Fudo might just be created to guide the pilots, or perhaps free Celiane from the cycle of rebirth.
    Ancient AQ is like Vajra Frontier all again, a machine that was corrupted to form a demonic abomination

  4. OMEGA RED says:

    >Study question: would it be better or worse if, instead of what I just said, Fudo zipped in and fixed everything somehow?
    I would say it would be worse, but there’s nothing this show could do to redeem itself anyway. The writers might as well pull a “just as keikaku” as if they wrote beyond episode 15 before this series was greenlit.

  5. exious says:

    I’ll say Fudo coming to fix everything is better since this entire damn thing seems to be his fault. If he had taken care of business back in Sousei then we wouldn’t have had to watch this trainwreck called Aquarion Evol’s second half.

    Oh yeah, and Zessikage creeped me out, but I think that might be because Mykage reminds me a lot of Griffith from Berserk and that guy also creeped me out (especially after he was reborn).

  6. kajitanieizan says:

    I hate to say I told you so, but… I told you so. Zessikagay calls upon Ianthe’s power in this episode, supporting the idea that he was in fact cognizant of what Ianthe was really doing, and was probably behind it in some way. Also, literally everything was a trainwreck in this ep. All conflicts are wholly ridiculous to the point of seeming like parody, Zessikagay pulls more bullshit out of his/her ass, Andy gets denied his Union, etc. Oh, did I mention Zessikagay’s bullshit, and the ass from which it was pulled? Because yeah.

    As you said, it feels like it’s simply going through the motions required to get to the ending one knows is coming, without any of the love or artistry put into it that might make it interesting to watch. Let me guess, Zessica will somehow break free for a moment to screw up Mikagay at a critical juncture, Amata will save Kagura and either absorb him or lose him due to a heroic sacrifice on Kagura’s part, and Amata and Mikono’s love will somehow save the world. Zzzzzz.

    The only way they can save this now is the unconventional ending: Amata completely fails and only a Brosexual Union! Go! Aquarion!! with Andy W. Hol, Mix, and Fudo ZEN can save the day while Mikono gives a monologue about how much it hurts to be deeply in love with two guys at once.

    • kajitanieizan says:

      Oh wait, one somewhat interesting thing… if Fudo is Apollonius, then is he interested in Mikono too? I mean, he for some reason plans to have her go out searching for him and then spends a bunch of time instructing her privately…

    • You know what? I’ll go ahead and give you the point about Mikage tapping Ianthe, because it doesn’t matter. The original Ianthe plot was a joke, first of all, and there is still no narrative need, significance, or symbolism in recognizing that Mikage tapped it right before he went all Final Boss Mode. Suppose you’re right. What does it tell us or add to the story? It’s just a bit of special effects on top of Mikage being evil, using his magic and winning everything.

      • kajitanieizan says:

        That was sort of my point, that it adds nothing, but the writers did it anyway just because Mikagay is omniscient and omnipotent and everything is his fault. Apologies, I meant that “I told you so” in terms of this episode being a Mikagay-induced trainwreck, not in terms of Ianthe.

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