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Episode 4: Full Frontal's Pursuit

 

Review by Chris Guanche

April 26, 2016

 

Summary

 

The Nahel Argama hides in the wreckage of a ruined colony while Riddhe and the rest of the ReZEL team fly out on patrol. Squad commander Norm Basilicock hails an approaching vessel, which turns out to be a drifting wrecked Salamis. Otto gives orders to stand down and recall the mobile suits, but first officer Liam Borrinea wonders if that’s the right move. Down in the hangar, Daguza and Conroy Haagensen attempt to open the cockpit of the Unicorn Gundam with the help of Anaheim engineer Aaron Terzieff. Daguza asks Aaron about the UC Project, and Aaron tells him it’s a secret part of the EFSF Reorganization Plan, with the Unicorn Gundam as its flagship. He starts to explain the NT-D system, but Alberto comes down and interferes. Daguza calls the bridge and says he thinks the Unicorn Gundam is connected to Laplace’s Box, so he suggests going to Luna II. Alberto butts in and suggests heading to Anaheim’s lunar headquarters at Von Braun. Riddhe spots Mihiro Oiwakken speaking to Audrey and introduces himself. Riddhe asks Audrey if she wants to take a look at the Gundam, but Mihiro doesn’t think that’s a good idea. Takuya excitedly says he wants to go and comments that the Nahel Argama was the ship of the Gundam Team during the First Neo Zeon War. Micott isn’t interested in going, but Mihiro insists on coming along. Alberto and Daguza argue about their destination, and Otto cuts off the comm line. He’s informed that the wrecked Salamis is blocking their path, so he orders the mobile suits to move it, but Liam reminds him that he recalled them to the ship. She asks him if he wants to send out the suits again, and he orders her to just blast the ship with their main guns. The ship then fires at the Salamis, revealing its location to the Garencieres. Riddhe tells Audrey that he’s seen her before and says she reminds him of the actress Natsume Swanson. When the Unicorn Gundam’s cockpit is finally opened, they’re shocked to see Banagher inside. Later, Banagher wakes up in the infirmary under the care of Dr. Hasan and surrounded by everyone. Daguza then comes in and orders everyone to leave so he can interrogate Banagher.

 

Elsewhere, Angelo tells Rewloola captain Hill Dawson to sit back while his team launches. Daguza doesn’t believe Banagher’s story, and Banagher asks if Daguza would believe that he’s the son of Cardeas. The ship suddenly rocks from a missile attack by the Rewloola. More missiles come in and hit the colony wreckage surrounding the Nahel Argama. Sensors then pick up four mobile suits coming in, but one of them is approaching at three times normal speed. Daguza sees Audrey in a corridor and tells her to get into a normal suit, and he does a double take after seeing her face. Full Frontal approaches in the Sinanju and systematically takes out the ship’s guns. The ship fires several missiles, but Full Frontal easily dodges them. Banagher walks out of the infirmary and sees that Riddhe has dropped his good luck charm. He gives it back, and Riddhe tells Banagher there’s nothing for him to do this time. Audrey then approaches Banagher and tells him that the Unicorn Gundam is set to Banagher’s biometrics and won’t work without him. She says they should both escape so that he can hide in another Side while she disposes of the Unicorn Gundam. Daguza and Conroy do some quick research on a computer, and he’s surprised by the results. Banagher asks Audrey how she can expect him to agree with her if she won’t tell him anything. Banagher asks Audrey what she really wants to do, but he’s interrupted when Daguza comes in to take her away. Norm, Galom Gorga and Riddhe manage to launch, but Full Frontal snipes Homare’s ReZEL as it takes off, destroying it and part of the catapult. Alberto comes to the bridge and tells Otto that they can’t fight the Red Comet’s Sinanju. He explains that two years ago the experimental mobile suit MSN-06S was stolen from Anaheim. The Federation pursuit force sent to retrieve it was destroyed, and the culprit Full Frontal is said to be the second coming of Char Aznable. Liam comments that she’s heard that story about a man taking out two Clops with a single suit, but Otto points out that Char went missing after the Second Neo Zeon War. Alberto gives them data on the Sinanju and explains that the Unicorn Gundam was made with data collected from the Sinanju. Riddhe fires a shot at the Sinanju, but Full Frontal dodges and uses an asteroid as a shield. Full Frontal then destroys Galom’s Jegan, and Norm wonders if he really is Char. Norm and Riddhe shoot at Full Frontal, but he dodges and blasts the right leg off of Riddhe’s ReZEL. Daguza then calls Full Frontal on an open frequency and tells him to stop attacking because they have Mineva Lao Zabi – Audrey, on the ship. He warns that they can't guarantee her safety if they're under attack, but he's open to negotiations.

 

Commentary

 

This episode is comprised of mostly the first part of OVA 2, minus the battle with Marida that was pushed up into episode 3. Given that the episode opens with a four-minute recap before even the opening sequence, it's clear that Sunrise is trying to stretch out the pre-existing content as far as possible. As a result, the actual content of this episode isn't that substantial. The first half has some exposition about the background of the world as it stands now, but much of it is about the mystery of the Unicorn Gundam's pilot. The second half picks up a bit with the start of Full Frontal's attack and ends on a pretty good spot with the reveal of Audrey's true identity as Mineva Zabi. Having watched the original OVA version multiple times, I can't say with any certainty how well the story is flowing broken up like this. I don't know how it plays to a first-time viewer, but I expect the pacing will slow down quite a bit once the story gets to Earth.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

3.5 out of 5 stars
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Gundam Unicorn RE:0096 Episode 4 Gundam Unicorn RE:0096 Episode 4
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