Two months have passed since the Aerial was sent for repairs, and it is due to return. The head of Grassley addresses the regulatory body responsible for cracking down on Gundams only to find that they have no intention of prosecuting Shin Sei Development (nor Peil Technologies, as far as I can tell). The head of Jeturk lets him in on a plot to assassinate Delling. This information is passed to Shaddiq, who decides to tighten the noose by calling up some Earthian mercenaries over Nika’s communication channel.
Suletta and the Earthian students make progress with their artificial leg prototype while Miorine meets with her father at the main Benerit Group Front to go over her plans for her new company, for which he has professional guidance and guarded praise. A new Elan appears, and attempts to charm Suletta – she rebuffs him out of loyalty to Miorine, but this bond is soon called into question when Suletta learns that her roles as her fiancée’s impromptu tomato gardener and corporate test subject that she thought were special have only been driven out of the inability to hire professionals on short notice.
Speaking of hired professionals, where are the engineers that were supposed to have been reviewing Aerial’s tech specs since episode two? I can’t with this show. At least we might soon get around to resolving the stakes from the duel with Elan IV, now that Elan V is on the scene, although, at this point, I’d almost prefer if that ends up being a last-episode callback (unless it actually is considered fulfilled by their brief post-duel interlude, which I would obviously find deeply unsatisfying).
Not content to rest in the shadows of its forerunners, this episode is also no slouch in terms of providing a single line of throwaway dialogue that lives in my brain and won’t let me die:
Challenges to the Gundam have piled up. To the mobile suit with the mentally-directed drone swarm powered by illegal super-technology that just finished thrashing the top dogs of all three major divisions of the conglomerate back to back TO BACK. Challenges to Aerial. Have piled up.
From whom?! To accomplish what?! Is this guy joking? Nothing else about this interaction suggests that this line has any alternate meaning, but what could any other combatant possibly hope to bring to the dueling grounds?
Speaking of Shaddiq, who at Sunrise has a harem fixation? The pirates in Iron Blooded Orphans were odd but not jarringly so, and there was an in-universe discussion about their situation. This show doesn’t seem to have the time or inclination to explain the girls that hang around our blond boy – at first I thought they might be some adoptive siblings, especially since we know that at least he is adopted, and they are all present for very, very sensitive phone calls, but they all have different last names in the credits, and only his matches the division leader’s (Zenelli). Are these people not high schoolers? Is this not weird?
Drama abounds, and Suletta’s mobile suit will surely break as thoroughly as her heart in the coming trials, wherever those happen to take place, but what was the point of bringing the film crew to the Dueling Committee Lou-