There are a lot of different angles to the story in this show. They have not been afraid to just keep throwing things at the audience, with little to no regard to its place in the story and why it fits. Now, I don’t mind when there is a little suspense. The story shouldn’t reveal all its secrets right away. But I’m beginning to feel like there is a growing disconnect between what I’m seeing on the screen, and why I should care.
One of the things I did not expect from this show was it’s political nature. The writing and directing have focused a lot of effort on establishing just how divided the people are on and around this island. Through these two episodes, as much as we learn about Ao, we are introduced to the political factions getting involved on this island. We have the territorial conflict between Okinawa and the Japanese mainland. We see the local islanders, including Naru’s dad, looking to start a rebellion to break free of all outside control. In the end, the one person in the island that has that everyone is united in fear is Ao, as a result of a history with his mother. The events that brought Ao and his mother (presumed Eureka) to the island, have left a tragic scar on the local residents. This event so important that it alienates Ao and his adoptive grandfather from everyone. As we see already, these conflicts are shaping the story as much as anything else.
But as a viewer, many questions were left unanswered. Last week, I defended this opening as a way to hook the viewer into coming back to find out what’s going on. Even those familiar with the original series are seeing a world much different than before, leading to many unanswered questions. And with this week, while fantastic in it’s action and visual effects, really showed a failure to familiarize us better with the world around Ao’s story. We find ourselves moving from one group the next without fully understanding why they are important, and why the short snippets of dialog and history are so important. While its great to get a frame of reference of the magnitude of the situation, it does nothing to help us understand the “why” this is all happening to begin with.
But while we know nothing about the supporting cast yet, the director has made sure that we identify Ao with Eureka. As Ao initiates the startup of the Mark I IFO, the screen flashes “Welcome Home Eureka”, and his hair transforms to an instantly recognizable color of turquoise. And ‘surprisingly’, Ao manages to pilot the Mark I, although not very well. But he manages to not only stay alive, but defeat the G-Monster. This fight brings him under the watchful eye of Generation Bleu, our last player in this conflict.
Now that we’ve completed this first arc, my hopes are that the rest of the story begins to flesh out. While the action has been great, and the visuals on fan service level, I’m left waiting to see just where this story is going to go. With all the thread lines being introduced, it will be a fine balance to make them all relevant in the story and to the viewer.
Woo that was a hoot. AO sure SEIZED THE REINS OF HISTORY. I appreciate how the show used the “pro” pilots (read: hot chicks) make the distinction of Ao being a total n00b. This isn’t Renton who can do a cut-back drop turn pretty much immediately — though Eureka SeveN powered through that by making sure Eureka the veteran pilot was involved in Nirvash’s tricks. Remembering love for a lot of shows in this episode. You win points if you can identify the references~
What a bunch of morons.