Rolling Review – Concrete Revolutio: The Last Song (18)

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Episode Synopsis:

A new plant called the Seitaka Awadachi is appearing in Japan. Its pollen seems to be causing people to spontaneously gain superhuman abilities. Many of these abilities are interfering with people’s lives and causing problems around the city of Shunjuku. Elsewhere a bus full of prisoners escapes and starts wreaking havoc on the populace. Super elsewhere, a widower struggles to grow close to his daughter after the death of his wife. When he is “infected” by the pollen and becomes “Human Man” how will that change his life? In addition to this, should he really be parading around helping people while superhumans are basically being persecuted?

Episode Review:

After two mediocre episodes Concrete Revolutio realigns itself with that it is best at, big themes wrapped around strong dramatic elements.  Several things happen in this episode and while it doesn’t all connect, it sets up interesting plot points for the show to use later.  This time in Concrete Revolutio, it’s time for the adventures of the Incredible Hulk everyday average guy manifesting powers.

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Bro do you even Seitaka Awadachi?!

Episode 18 brings back the tradition of jumping timelines. We start out in the current timeline where a man is praying with his young daughter at a picture of his wife. The two then venture out into a bunch of flowers and the young girl touches a giant rock shaped like a face. We then get a shot of Detective Shiba doing what appears to be releasing some superhuman prisoners from a truck.  Afterwards we see the father/daughter pair on a bus where they get into big trouble when a prison escapee hijacks it.  Just when things look dire and the father falls out of the bus, he manifests Hulk Powers. He hides his face and accidentally ends up with the name “Human Man”.

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Uhhh…yeah…sure I did kiddo…

What follows is a man trying to use his newfound superhuman powers to make his daughter love him again. Human Man becomes the talk of the town until the Superhuman Government Agency calls him in and asks him to take some drugs to suppress his abilities. The Agency and the Government Ninjas believe that the “disease” that’s spreading amongst humans due to the pollen needs to be stopped. As such, suppression drugs are being issued and the Government Ninjas are burning the Seitaka Awadachi plant down. This leads to a confrontation between Jirō, Human Man and the idea of what “Protecting Superhumans” really means.

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T-Rexbot! You Get to Burning!

Later in the Episode we jump through time to…*gasp* the end of Episode 8 where Jirō and Judas find Earth-chan laying in an underground facility. A battle for Earth-chan ensues where Daitetsu faces off against Jirō in his new silver T-Rexbot. The whole thing is short lived and the payoff is actually Kikko’s half hearted attempt to capture Earth-chan directly afterwards. She makes the statement that she doesn’t mind being in the Bureau (and thus Jirō’s enemy) as long as she gets to talk to him. I’m curious if this will lead to Kikko breaking ties with the Bureau later as Kikko states “As a witch, I’m not supposed to do good”.

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T-Rexbot…SMASH!
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Don’t let Emi know you said that….
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Well that’s certainly a dilemma

The powerful pieces in this episode are the condensed scope and the dialogue.  This isn’t high level superhumans fighting for philosophical dominance.  This is an ordinary man who just wanted his daughters love and is against the government because he is acting in the heat of the moment.  In terms of dialogue the greatness is not just rendered in the character interactions but in the world building hints as well.  Jirō shows concern over the fact that Earth-chan is wearing a helmet similar to Claude’s. Has she been tampered with? We get to hear about the Shinjuku incident from an ordinary man who “didn’t understand the youth” versus Daitetsu’s statement about it being all out warfare.  The Agency talks about only wanting superhumans whom people will admire.  Through all this we gain a deeper understanding about the situation at hand and how the world is ticking.

Eventually, Earth-chan tries to take out Human Man because he’s blocking the government from burning the plants and thus deemed “Evil”. How will this effect superhumans in the eyes of Earth-chan and the general populace? Human Man makes the statement that he really never wanted to “save other people” as a superhuman. All he wanted was for his daughter to love him. This throws Jirō for a loop because he has to redefine what “Protection” really means to him and it was nice to see him struggle with his ideals.

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What are you gonna do NOW Jiro?

I think it’s worth mentioned that the very end is…completely insane. Let’s just say that the stone face I mentioned opens up and…uh…

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Wow..an Episode 2 of the FIRST SEASON throwback?!   Bug Lady here just pulls the pollen into space. Yeah…so…I guess all of Concrete Revolutio’s problems this season are resolved by simply blasting off into space?!

SUMMARY:

A lot of elements are brought back in this episode (some of which I didn’t even get to mention). Most of it connected, but some of it was confusing (where did all the prisoners go?!) and the ending was flat out nutszoid (seriously guys…the Bug People?!). It was nice to see Jirō struggle and for the first time be opposing the Government as they tried to do (mostly) the right thing for humanity.  As a final note, the show leaves us with the notion that a lot of new superhumans were born as the due to the continued spread of Seitaka Awadachi plant.  It was deemed a superhuman “boom”.  It’ll be fascinating to see if this swings the perceptions of superhumans around or leads to all our war later in the series.

I do have to say that if there isn’t a HAPPENIN’ party in space at the end of this season I will be majorly disappointed.

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Everyone who comments…please please come up with a caption for this….I call “Buzzsaw Grandma”

 

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