September 24, 2012

Muv-Luv marathon

I wish it didn't take my malfunctioning hard drive to watch this series, but without access to that drive, I was incredibly ...bored. Lucky for me most of the episodes were converted for my phone to watch myself to sleep, which oddly enough I still didn't get a chance to watch because I later imposed a curfew to keep my health in check. No headaches since July? I'll buy that for a dollar :)

First, a little background into my interest in Muv-Luv. I'm one of those viewers in the last decade who went through KGNE (Kimi Ga Nozomu Eien, or was that ein...), and Akane Maniax. Akane Maniax is when the Muv-Luv rumors started to fly, which was further cemented by the last OVA for Akane Maniax. And that's the last time I heard any significant news/rumors about Muv-Luv. I didn't look into it at all as I thought it would be one of those games that wouldn't get localized in English. Who'd have thought more than 6 years later we could return again to that time.

And, I actually love this series. It's no secret I'm somewhat of a sci-fi guy, and alien invasion is always a fun topic for me. But there was one thing I kept getting irritated about after all these years of alien invasion media, and that is us humans are usually portrayed as... weak. Like, laughably weak, like really, it seems the best we can use is standard FMJ, but bullets don't have anything on starships or anything else aliens throw at us that isn't human size. So where's all the weaponry? Why can't there be a time we actually have something good to fire?

It's all a part of the story, I mean, who am I kidding, being invaded by a weaker species is laughable in its own right. So it's more interesting when us humans win through some other means *cough* computer virus *cough*, but most of the time, there's either just one good weapon, or everything is a... prototype. I'm not going to pull my punches on this one, but that's what made me laugh about Evangelion, I know it's a part of the story, but Nerv was just a prototype organization that seemed to rely more on the pilot than the mecha. When an Eva unit is knocked out, that's it, no more, and yet in that last part/end of evangelion/insert-real-ending-here, there goes the opponents and their mass produced white flying guys with giant blades and big mouths. Sucks to be human :P Now I'd like to mention Gundam Age here and why there could only be 3 Gundams spanning 3 generations, but.... that doesn't count as an Alien invasion, I think >__>
Aftermath of the Kyoto battle. How did that bus tram thing remain intact among the rubble?

And that's probably why I grew so attached to Muv-Luv Total Eclipse early on, after the defeat at Kyoto, the survivors live on expanding their work to win next time. After episode 2, the next 10 episodes focused on the progression and advancement of current technologies, as well as their pilots. It's about time the whole world got involved in saving the, well, whole world, instead of one country seemingly being the only place on Earth that is mankind's only chance at survival. Although, I did have to roll my eyes at the best weapon they have against soldier-classes are regular guns, come on, I just mentioned that thing about FMJ's, can't humans at least have something that pack more punch? *hint: Michael Bay's Transformers and the not so weak soldiers* speaking of the technologies, why don't these TSF's have at least an ejection seat/capsule. I know, ejecting towards the BETA isn't exactly a good idea, but having it is better than not. My case being the first two episodes, and how helpless the poor girls were once their mechs were decommissioned. I tell you, it took me awhile to get over that 2nd episode, that is the prevailing reason why it took me until now to watch this series. Back when episode 01 aired, it didn't take long for people to go around spoiling the Anime Expo episode 02 summaries, which for some unknown apparent reason why things like this aren't always spoiler-hidden, but that's when I found out about the gruesome details, which is also a part of the reason why this post eventually went up. The girls were practically dragged out of their mechs, and the best weapon(s) Yui could muster was a pistol and her screaming. I think it could of helped if they had escape capsules, which at least would have tossed them away from the heat instead of going down with the ship. Or maybe I'm nitpicking, but it's one of the reasons why I found Code Geass entertaining to watch, was that they had escape capsules built into the mechs.

Nitpicking aside, one thing I just can't figure out, is the continued use of obsolete weapons. I don't need to mention the UN and their blatant waste of firepower in the Evangelion series, but here in Muv-Luv, those poor conventional tanks are just fodder. Why in heavens name do their shells just bounce off the BETA? I can understand the Destroyer classes and their hard heads, but the tanks [should] do nicely against the ahem tank class BETA. As a person who was infatuated with armored vehicles growing up, I feel so discouraged seeing tanks being misused in anime. Although, there was only one moment in anime I can distinctly remember, and that is Ed's railgun tank in Gundam Seed Stargazer. The guy used his tank against a superior unit (the mobile suit GINN), and actually pulled off a successful manuever, albeit at the cost of the tank itself. But seriously, Stargazer is the only memorable moment I can think of where a tank went up against a superior unit, and kicked ass. Please don't desecrate tanks anymore :(
Ed's suicide tank run in Gundam Seed Stargazer episode 01

Of course the other motivating factor was the nice girls :D Well, I'm glad they didn't give us a chance to love the Yui squad in episodes 1&2, but 3 years later, I like what I see. From personality to big ones beauty, Stella takes my pick. This is a rather amusing choice for me, because growing up [in Germany], I felt no affinity to [European] girls whatsoever. Well I did detail some of the reasons in an earlier pervert post, and, no offense to German girls, that was quite some time ago when I was still a young bastard, and after moving to another town away from my elementary crush, I didn't think about girls. Yeah, I had other things occupying my mind, nowadays me being a lot older and wiser, I like all girls, well, at least those I've had the pleasure of meeting. And Germany isn't so bad when it comes to girls (Hello frauen!), but what the heck am I talking about, this post isn't about Real D girls, it's about anime girls, where German girls have eyepatches, and Russian girls have silvery grey'ish hair, and rest-of-world (ROW) girls have blonde hair :P
My waifu! \o/

That's why I find it amusing that the girl that strikes my cords is a Swedish girl, her big ones, that oneesan type attitude, and that blonde hair as yellow as the Ikea sign. Er... yeah, strangely I didn't feel much about Yui, other than that harsh life she went through, and about the Russian girls, I really need to know more about their strange behavior first before I start going all doki-doki for them, but as it stands, Stella won me over with more than just her looks. Which is leading me to a scary thought, in the recent episode 12, I had the dastardly feeling that someone is going to die, no not mister mechanic guy, someone in the main group, and I don't exactly know why but I felt it was going to be Stella. Now, when I get a bad feeling about something, it usually isn't something to brush aside, but I hope she doesn't die at all. I had been wondering what it would take for Yui to rejoin the unit in a forward role, but I hope it's not at the expense of Stella or even the Nepalese girl. I even had a feeling that commander girl of the Georgian unit was going to die, what with those kind of orders she got. Heck, if they gotta kill someone, make it Viggy, sorry guy, but you gotta take one for the team, I had enough of the girls dying >__>
I won't be in a hurry to see the Blu-rays for that episode, that's for sure.

After being current with this series, I just learned that it's mentioned as being a 26 episode series, so all in all I'm riding this train, gravy or not, and so far, 12 eps in I'm hooked. It's rare for me to be this hooked onto a series more than 13 episodes, my most recent enjoyment was Moretsu Pirates, the previous failure (IMO) was Aquarion Evol, specifically the second half. I sure needed a mecha series to wash out the bad taste from that series. And what better way to enjoy a mecha series, besides mecha, aliens and hot girls :P

I swear though, if someone uses an AK-47 against a tank class again, I'm.... I'm going to scream "AUTOMAT KALASHNIKOV WOOT" XD

And, no offense, but I thought Yuuya's name was rather funny. I wondered "is Bridges the best American name they can come up with?" I think Johnson sounds more like it. Heck, it's such an American'ish name that there had to be 2 Agent Johnson's in Die Hard :P That is until I remembered Stargate's Beau Bridges, which afterwards no longer sounds strange, but actually kind of cool. At least it isn't "Shoe" >____>

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