(Note: Episodic notes are still mostly to be found on the Episodics Notes’ page, but 0-2 episodes per week will have their write-up appear on the main page, when I think they warrant it. For those who don’t know, I take the notes as I watch the episode, and merely re-order them afterwards.)
Slept in and then my internet decided to be shit, argh! Well, let’s dive into it, one of my more expected shows of the season.
Thoughts and Notes:
1) This is Serious Business™ into the Illusion of Comedy Comfort:
- Well, the opening sequence told us one thing – the world conquest story, it will succeed. But, considering it did not tell us what “True World Conquest” is, unlike the fake illusionist world dominations, and considering how ruined the world looks, we don’t know what its “success” means.Yes, feast your eyes on what “success” looks like.
- Heh, and now we have a very calm atmosphere, almost RomCom, but the preview and the opening sequence tell us not to be deceived.“Ha ha ha! Save that for your future-girlfriend!” – Come on, tonal shift, we know you’re only giving us this so the horror will be all that much deeper :)
- “Martial law” – We really don’t know anything about the setting, do we?
- “Pervert! Criminal!” – Perfect RomCom setup :P
2) Welcome to Zvezda, Home of Misfits, Ready to Take Over the World:
- We’d want to laugh at this little kid, except we saw the preview, and we all know this is “loli leading a secret group to take over the world” as well as having seen her statue in the prologue :3 Well, let us see madness unfold. My body is ready.
- “If you swear your allegiance to me, I shall share my snacks and the worlds with you.” – That truly is a liege lord’s offer – swear fealty, and he shall give you titles, he shall clothe and feed you.
- That’s what I remember from the PV, what a unique assortment of strange people(?) we have here. Let’s see:
- Cranky puppet-master lady.
- Body-suit kata pirate, with a cape!
- A fat skeleton soldier-general.
- A funky robot.
- A hapless masked human who’s cowardly.
- Ah yes, a demon loli girl with a star, and a dream.
- A Middle School student, just recruited, Jimon Asuta, how do you do?
Also, note the names, Galaktika (Galaxy), Zvezda (Star), Dva (Two), Plamya (Flame), Pepel (Ash/es), we’re playing at being “Russian” here :3
- “I’m scared. Once I begin, I can no longer stop or turn back.” – Well, time to make a decision then, young lady.
- Huh, interesting, “Once I conquer the world, will there be a place where I belong?” – Many villains who are hell-bent on world-domination in such shows do so because they felt left out, but if you’ve conquered the world, if you are the supreme ruler, then you’ve set yourself apart in a manner that can never be repaired, there will forever be a gulf between you and others.And of course, Asuma brings forth a valid objection, she worries, as if she already did conquer the world. Then again, considering she can’t stop or turn back once she begins, she should think of it now.
- “A toy can be replaced, but you can’t, Jimon Asuta, and neither can I” – A good comeback to his earlier speech – that she can simply be replaced, which is actually how he feels about himself, that he was replaced, and that he replaced his family. Likewise, a cute little girl who is doted on, can simply be replaced for another. That’s what he said, but she rejects it completely.
- “I can hear the world’s cries, it cries out for conquest!” – Those lines are very befitting a villain, and given a “commanding and magnificent” villain, those lines could move you, imagine Lelouch Lamperouge speaking them with his resonant voice. But, do not count her out simply for being a pipsqueak, these are the lines a proper villain should say, and with proper mannerisms, the flamboyant arm stretch, the defiance in her eyes and stance. This is Zvezda, such a sense for the dramatics.
3) Zvezda is Madness. This World is Insane:
- Giant squid monster brain thingy, and pretty, pretty explosions!
- A terrifying toy, and cute monsters, is this also an analogy for this world? The scary folks are the saner ones, and Hoshimiya Kate is the truly terrifying entity.
- “Conquest of conquest, by conquest, for conquest!” – Yeah, show us what you mean. References Lincoln’s Gettysburg’s Address (“[g]overnment of the people, by the people, for the people”)
- “You’re just quoting Lincoln!” – “Lincoln had potential, but he had a weakness – he couldn’t handle bullets!” – LOL. This is so cheesy, so over the top silly.
- “Just a toy”, eh? That’s the stuff of nightmares.
- “It’s conquest time!” as she hits it, a reference to The Fantastic Four’s “It’s clobberin time”?
- Heh, and anything she had conquered, anything she had imprinted her will upon gets marked as having been dealt with.
4) Everything is crazy, be ready for the future:
- It only makes sense for the enemy to be just as weird, to be able to stand a chance, also, considering the ear hair-do, maybe Hiroshimiya Kate used to be one of them.
- So, we’re going to meet another nutcase spewing lines such as “The world’s creator would be surprised to know it exists to be conquered” and “It’s easier to destroy the world than conquer it.”
ED – Beautiful, great character design, which is one of the things that drew all of us to this show. Well, the song is a snore-fest, honestly, like most EDs. Also, LOL, our protagonist is going to run around in a gimp suit, effectively.
Post Episode Notes:
Well, this was interesting. This was very interesting. Yes, there’s the immediate juxtaposition of cute and menacing, the over-the-top that is only enhanced by how unassuming our Zvezda leader looks, but, her lines are perfect villain lines, just imagine Fukuyama Jun in his best Lelouch Lamperouge voice acting, speaking those same lines, and no one would consider them as “ridiculous”, for you’d know he’ll succeed. Her too, though her voice doesn’t carry power, she certainly has conviction, and the opening sequence already let us know she will succeed.
But, this is the real question, if conquest isn’t about controlling the land, then what is it? Note what Kate said – “Why do you drive this tank? To protect your family, your land, your honour? Tanks only exist to justify the military complex!” – She is an anarchist, it would seem, she is a radical. What does “Radical” means, do you know? It comes from “Radicalis” in Latin, meaning “Has roots”, and thus “radicals” are those who wish to change things from the basics.
She “conquered” things, including the tank shell, and in so doing rendered them harmless. She said the world can only be safe via conquest. She is going to turn everything into harmless things, to declaw the world? I wonder.
Return to the Sekai Seifuku – Zvezda / World Conquest Episodic Notes page.
I’m sold, I think If hadn’t seen the opening with the “success” of conquest this whole episode may have put a bad taste in my mouth, but there is clearly more to it than simply taking over the world because it needs to be taken over.
That Lincoln joke, that may have topped anything Lelouch ever said and I’m not sure if that is a good thing or not.