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Episode 38: Hunter of Angels

 

Review by Chris Guanche

January 13, 2017

 

Summary

 

The Barbatos Lupus' eyes turn red as Mikazuki rushes toward the Hashmal. One month later, Orga travels to Saisei to brief McMurdo on the situation. During the battle, Mikazuki absorbs a blast from the Hashmal's beam cannon and tells McGillis and Isurugi not to intervene because they'll get in his way. Mikazuki whacks several Plumas and jumps onto the Hashmal, but he's attacked by its wire blade and knocked into the canyon wall. The wire blade hits the Barbatos Lupus again, but he quickly jumps up the wall and tosses his sword mace at the beam cannon. He dodges the cannon and manages to slide under the Hashmal, where he rips off a piece of the mobile armor to use as a shield against the wire blade. Mikazuki keeps clashing with the wire blade and moves so quickly that Julieta can't see. The Barbatos Lupus receives damage to its right foot and chest, and McGillis is amazed to see the power that ended the Calamity War. The wire blade pierces the Barbatos Lupus, but he manages to punch a whole into the main body and fire several rounds into it. He then grabs Isurugi's large blade and uses it to attack the Hashmal. He whacks the main body several times and rams the blade through the head, although the wire blade pierces his cockpit and barely misses him. The defeated Hashmal finally stops moving. In the present, Orga tells McMurdo that Gjallarhorn is scouring Mars for other Calamity War remnants, but McMurdo isn't interested in that. Orga then says that Tekkadan showed its strength, but he recognizes they were unable to defeat the Hashmal on their own. However, he thinks that continuing to stay in McGillis' good graces will benefit Teiwaz in the long run. Orga makes an offering of his Sakazuki oath cup to McMurdo and vows that he's ready to be disowned if he causes trouble for Teiwaz. McMurdo laughs and comments that Orga has become a well-groomed dog for Gjallarhorn. He says he has no intention of getting rid of them because of the money that comes in from Mars. McMurdo warns Orga that if he ever betrays Teiwaz, the cup wont be the only thing that gets crushed. Jasley and his associates discuss the situation with Tekkadan, but he's confident that their connection to Rustal is better than Tekkadan's to McGillis. On Earth, McGillis reports to the Seven Stars about the incident on Mars. Iok yells at McGillis for setting everything up and accuses him of wanting the Order of the Seven Stars. He asks Rustal to back him up, but Rustal instead praises McGillis for his efforts. Iok chases after Rustal when the meeting ends and demands to know why he didn't denounce McGillis. Rustal notes that they have no proof, and he wonders if he should rethink his alliance with the Kujan family. Julieta tells Rustal that she wants to test pilot the new machine and get stronger for his sake. He allows it and adds that she's already strong enough and he expects something different from her. Orga visits Naze on the Hammerhead, who announces that he'll be promoted to underboss if things go well. Naze comments that McMurdo only makes decisions based on results, and Orga can't ever stop now that he's started things. He then asks when Orga is going to bring the Barbatos Lupus in for repairs and about Mikazuki's condition. Orga thinks back to the aftermath of the battle, when Mikazuki said he couldn't feel his legs. Orga tells Naze that now Mikazuki can't move his right side at all, and Naze asks if the "king of Mars" thing is worth pursuing. Orga still thinks so, but Naze believes he's in too much of a hurry. Naze says that it seems like Orga doesn't care where he's heading, as long as he reaches his goal and earns an easy living.

 

Kudelia and Atra visit Mikazuki to give him pastries in bed. Atra explains to Kudelia that Mikazuki makes Hush carry him everywhere. Mikazuki wants to be close to the Barbatos Lupus and says he can move while connected to it. He then asks Kudelia about the farm and notes that he can't live that life anymore. After leaving the room, Kudelia says that she's a coward because she was scared to see Mikazuki and didn't come earlier. She's worried that Mikazuki hasn't changed at all even after everything that he's gone through, and Atra mentions that she was thinking the same thing. She starts crying and admits she's afraid that the next time Mikazuki leaves could be the last. She then asks Kudelia to have a baby with Mikazuki. Isurugi reports to McGillis that during the Battle of Edmonton, Gaelio's Kimaris Trooper was damaged in battle, and he died after being found by Gjallarhorn ground forces. He was then cremated, with his remains buried in the Seven Stars cemetery. McGillis asks about the Kimaris Trooper, and Isurugi answers that it was returned to the Bauduin family. He then asks Isurugi what he thinks of the way the Barbatos Lupus fought, and Isurugi answers that it was impressive, but also with a kind of loathing, as though it simply charged towards destruction without reason. McGillis says that Mikazuki made him realize that a real revolution is a strong wind blowing away a rotten stench. Only true power can lead the world to the right path. On Rustal's flagship, Vidar speaks to mechanic Yamajin Toka until Julieta arrives and announces that she'll be testing the new machine. Vidar is surprised that Rustal would let her do that. Against the advice of his men, Iok insists that they call Jasley. On Mars, Ride repaints the Shiden Custom with a more muted color scheme and nicknames it Raiden-Go now that it's his. Hush walks in while carrying Mikazuki on his back and puts him down on the floor. Mikazuki asks Orga when the Barbatos Lupus will be fixed, and Orga reminds him that they're taking it to Saisei in three days. Merribit thinks that Orga should tell Mikazuki to stop piloting, but Nadi answers that he won't and can't do that. Orga thinks about what Naze said and is convinced that he's doing everything for the sake of Tekkadan. He thinks back to when he first met Mikazuki and punches the wall in anger. He walks into Mikazuki's room and says he's not apologizing. Mikazuki then wakes up and rolls off the bed and asks if Orga thinks this is all his fault. Mikazuki says it's not so bad because this makes things simpler. Kudelia talks about a world where no one has to fight, but now he doesn't have to worry about it because he can't live without fighting. He says that as long as Orga commands him, he can go anywhere. Mikazuki won't let Orga apologize, and Orga answers that he won't.

 

Commentary

 

The Hashmal is finally taken down in what is probably one of the most brutal fights in Gundam. I've never seen someone fight with such reckless abandon akin to a wild beast on the attack. Mikazuki brings frightening fierceness to the table that exceeds how unrestrained he was when fighting Ein in Edmonton. And in recalling that situation, we see the consequences - his entire right side is now paralyzed, and he needs Hush to carry him around. Although Gundam Thunderbolt features some amputee pilots, we've never had a paralyzed protagonist in Gundam before. As Kudelia and Atra note, it's sad to see that Mikazuki doesn't change and insists on blindly following Orga. He's adopted a new kind of fatalism, even for his cohort, in which he decides he doesn't have to worry about being in a peaceful world because he can't live without fighting. Orga's thoughts in this episode remind me of Walter White from Breaking Bad, who insisted for the longest time he was a meth kingpin for his family's sake, when what he really craved was the power. If you have to convince yourself that you're doing the right thing, then you probably aren't. Also, McGillis seems to be expanding his ambitions now, which doesn't seem villainous at all. Interestingly, Isurugi doesn't know that McGillis was the one who fought Gaelio at Edmonton, and I wonder why McGillis would keep that to himself when he trusts Isurugi with so much. Finally, it seems that we're not done yet with Iok's stupidity. Rustal has threatened not so subtly to cut him lose, so now it looks like he's going to run off on some foolhardy attempt to avenge his men. I can hope that he fails spectacularly and does us the favor of dying in the process.

 

Overall Rating

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4 out of 5 stars
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Gundam Iron-Blooded Orphans Episode 38 Gundam Iron-Blooded Orphans Episode 38
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