Archive for June 8th, 2008

Code Geass R2: Exploitation of Pinky Promises

You’re sick, Lelou. Sick. Sick sick sick. Li Xingke, you have my full blessing to be pissed off in this instance.

Er, well, I’m pretty sure that the week-gap between episode 8 and episode 9 was not a chance to give the animators a break from their hard lives toiling away at drawing Kallen’s impressive assets. That in particular seems to have become a labor of love in this season, which I suspect is Goro and the rest of the staff reacting to fandom in general. I mean, it’s obvious just from looking at the danbooru tag that there’s C.C. and Kallen (in a virtual dead heat for top spot), and then there’s everyone else. This is obviously intentional on the behalf of the production staff, because Goro, like other directors in the anime business, likes to give the fans what they most want, and what they want is: Kallen’s posterior. And C.C. eating pizza, which I noted made it’s triumphant return this episode, Cheese-kun and all.

Derailed by derrieres, sorry. What I was trying to say was that the break wasn’t there for a break, but, rather, to concentrate as many “Holy shi–” moments (both plot-related and the aforementioned) in this episode as possible. Either that, or this was just a way for them to apologize for the week off. Or something. The major plot development this time around is, of course, Li Xingke enacting a virtual coup d’etat in the middle of a wedding ceremony (the man has class, I must admit, because the only time people ever say anything at the “If there is anyone who objects to the union of this man and this woman, let them speak now or forever hold their peace” bit of a wedding is in fiction where it’s turned into this massive dramatic moment of climatic catharsis. Extra points to the writers for not actually saying the line, but instead just giving you the shocked expressions of everyone as they stared at the spectacle). Of course, this coup d’etat quickly becomes a power play by Lelouch (or perhaps I should refer to him as Zero? There seems to be a distinct difference in his personality when he’s in the suit and when he’s out of it; this was probably there last season, but it’s definitely there now that Zero is almost an entirely separate and distinct personality from Lelouch himself) to try and lever himself out of the dire straits Schneizel has placed him in.

I’m not entirely sure of the reasoning behind this move–clearly he used Xingke to make his own job of defeating Brittania easier in general, but it’s not entirely clear why Zero would throw him away like this, and thereby making another enemy. The resolution of this particular turn of events, however, will have to wait until next week, where we find out that everything went According To Plan, and whether or not that Plan is beneficial to Tianzi or Xingke at all. (interesting side note–according to Wikipedia, “Tianzi” is one of the infinite ways to render the characters for “emperor” in Chinese, 天子, into Latin letters (via the pinyin system) although, of course, you render this in Japanese as “Tenshi” leading to some rather strange confusion on my part while watching this episode. All is understood now, though. I think) Depending on how this little arc goes, either we’ll be left with a Lelouch who is just as bad as the father he’s fighting against, or else we’ll have a moment wherein it is revealed that Lelouch is not as bad as his father is. It’s not entirely clear which way the series is headed at this point, but those seem to be the most likely paths. I’m hoping for the latter, simply based on the much-loathed past couple of episodes of Lelouch having emotional issues pointing towards the fact that Lelouch is conscious of what he’s becoming, and wants to stop things before they get any worse. Of course, I’m now wondering if the Big Plot Twist at the End will turn out to be everything gone according to plan–Charles’s plan, of course, in preparing Lelouch for the Emperorship (I don’t know how he could have that much foreplanning in store, but maybe that second Geass power of his is clairvoyance). Or something.

I am rather upset by Zero’s rather abrupt stance because the bits of backstory we were given for Tianzi and Xingke were quite well-done and touching, in the way that only a “kind-hearted child empress overpowered by eunuchs lusting after power (since they have nothing else to lust after, being eunuchs)” story, however brief it might be now, can be. I think that, as long as said eunuchs get other, more vital parts of their bodies lopped off, I’ll be plenty happy, regardless of what happens to Tianzi and Xingke. Well, okay, unless they die horribly.

Final thought: it’s been mentioned several times (although I don’t know where, if anywhere in particular) that, in the world of Code Geass, there is an awful lot of power invested in extremely young girls (Tianzi, Kaguya, and Nunnally now). If I were to say, that this was symbolism; that, perhaps, the aggression of Brittannia in general and Charles in specific, could be described as “rap

Err, no, no, I won’t say that. Nothing to see here, move along. Carry on about your business.

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NOTICE SHAMELESSLY STOLEN FROM G.K. CHESTERTON

I cannot understand those that take anime seriously, but I can love them, and I do. Out of my love I warn them to keep clear of this blog.

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