Aldnoah.Zero Episodes 16 and 17

aldnoah zero 17

Lol girls worrying about being fat on a planet that is realistically featuring mass foot shortages! LOL WIMMEN AMIRITE?

Not a huge hell of a lot I feel like delving into in episode sixteen since not much happened on the whole. Yeah, ok, Slaine made everyone respect him, and Inaho’s sister came back, as did that awful doctor and Marito, but it was a pretty quiet episode overall. The whole idea of the re-supplies being attacked as being a new tactic is silly since it just brings us back to the question of why they weren’t attacking all the re-supply in the first place to starve the Terrans out of their orbital base. Alternately, if blowing up munitions ships after they’ve docked could destroy the entire base, they should’ve been using that approach much sooner.

I think the larger issue is that instead of making Inaho and Slaine smart the show is actually relying on making everyone else around them stupid. The scene at the end where Inaho is correctly analyzing Slaine’s actions – it wasn’t random poor timing, he planned it that way – was such a good demonstration of this. He’s in a room full of professional soldiers; what he has deduced should in no way come across to them as being a startling truth, particularly as the Martians are known to be more technologically advanced than the Terrans are. Inaho doesn’t look smart, everyone else looks incompetent and idiotic. It looks like self-insert fiction.

The other issue that gets highlighted here is the habit of plunking only one Orbital Knight at a time against the Terrans. There’s a comment about how there should be a push to take over the remainder of the Terran’s terrestrial territory, and it only has us asking why they didn’t do this in the first place when the Deucalion was off screwing around in space. Now the Deucalion CAN return to Earth because none of you nitwits bothered to try to ensure that they couldn’t by rolling the rest of the Earth up! Great job!

On a matter unrelated to military issues, wow, that doctor is awful! He gave an alcoholic booze?! Damn, doc, I bet you also like alternative vaccination schedules, too, huh? I’m assuming that this guy only is still allowed to practice because so many people are dead that there isn’t a hell of a lot of choice when it comes to picking a medical professional. The man is also weirdly out of touch about what is going on with the war; sure, lots of Americans are wholly ignorant about what is going on in the Afghan War, but it’s not like the Afghans can drop a landing castle on their skulls, either, whereas ol’ doc here is right in the line of fire simply by being a human on Earth.

Also, giving us a sympathetic Orbital Knight at this point feels pretty cheap after spending the entire show depicting them as buffoonish caricatures of hate.

Anyway, episode seventeen.

People in an apocalyptic world worrying about diets and wanting to know how to keep their figures? This doesn’t make any fucking sense; this should be a world of food shortages and limited choice on what is still available – if anything people are going to look underfed. Look at Germany as WWI progressed – people on the home front were starving to death and one of the things that made soldiers happy about gaining ground was that the French and British troops had a lot of food in their trenches compared to what the Germans had. That was one country facing a two-front war, not an entire planet facing a planet-wide war. A.Z’s world hasn’t been terribly convincing in a long time (since episode four or so, if we’re being generous), but it’s definitely gotten increasingly worse at painting a convincing picture of its setting as time has gone on. So you get a bunch of female soldiers worrying about their waistlines and a military doctor who doesn’t know how the war is going.

But the writers seem to have run out of things for the girls and women in the show to talk about when they’re not talking to men, so all we ever hear them discuss is a. diets, and b. Inaho. What else could ladies possibly worry about?! I’m just glad that we’ve managed to dodge the bullet of Rayet becoming interested in Inaho; it got perilous at points in this episode.

It feels odd that there was no discussion of Trident Base’s destruction this episode. It’s presented as being fairly devastating in episode sixteen, but everyone has seemingly forgotten it already by now. I guess at least Aldnoah.Zero is consistent about being inconsistent.

Actually, going back, I did think the opening scene of sixteen was fairly decent. Yeah, sure, I could pick at the fact that Inaho looks pretty healthy despite having been comatose, but the overall effect was enough that that bit didn’t bother me. It sure sold me a lot more on the idea of Inaho as caring about his older sister than anything previous has, and it worked as background for the later scene between the two where Yuki admits that she became a soldier specifically to try to make a world where Inaho wouldn’t have to be one. At the same time, this later scene also made me wish that this whole show had been in better hands from the get-go, as this sort of conflict is fairly fertile ground to dig into.

Ah well. All I can do is hope that going forward we’ve got more scheming and underhandedness from Lemrina. Having an audience with other Orbital Knights without telling Slaine is a good step, as is having them come aboard (Slaine’s chagrin is delicious), but her reaction to blondie while on telecall, and to when he challenges Slaine to a duel, are not promising. Lemrina’s already made statements indicating that she is aware that she is being used as a tool, so why would the girl be surprised at being a bird in a cage? Let’s not have a Lemrina crisis about being a prisoner ultimately and not as much an honored and independent dignitary; let’s stick to Lemrina hating everyone’s guts and doing whatever she can to poke them in the eye with a fork please.

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2 Responses to Aldnoah.Zero Episodes 16 and 17

  1. chrysthopes says:

    I Left you a comment on your article about why Light Novel can’t work in the US. Could you answer please?

  2. Zeonwanker says:

    It was mentioned last season that UFE HQ had vast food supplies stockpiled for war fugitives, who never arrived there. However, as they’re not in Russia anymore and almost two years have passed since then anyway, I wouldn’t know if the UFE remnants would be able to hold out the way it’s shown to us with their canned food and whatever agricultural production’s left to them. Well, who knows, maybe the UFE has the Hyper Oats to make it happen… Other than that I’m guessing that the writers might’ve very deliberately included that scene in order to give at least some credence to the Versian claim of Earth being this enviable land of plenty that’s practically begging to get invaded for chicken wings and other resources. That was Saazbaums major justification for his genocidal war of aggression after all: That he was doing it all for the welfare of starvin’ martians living in abject poverty. Meanwhile down on Earth, the women can keep chatting and joking about getting fat and going on diets, that’s how well fed they are even during war time, isn’t it terribly unfair! Or something along those lines. If the earthnoids were shown to be starving as well, it would make the Versian war narrative look like an utterly unfunny joke and destroy even the last shred of justification they may have had. Well, I would assume that the average viewer already feels that way, what with most martian counts being presented as cartoonishly evil, but maybe the writers think the two sides are sufficiently balanced out as long as the martians are militarily superior but starving, while the terrans aren’t.

    As for Trident Base, I kept brooding over it and arrived at the thought that maybe the Deucalion space mission could’ve had a half decent military purpose if the defense of that base was vital to keep Vers from attaining what amounts to total air superiority by ruling earth’s orbit, and retain the option of orbital support for UFE operations respectively. (Does that sound somewhat plausible…?) Orbital support was crucial in bringing down count Mazuurek, after all. Better have it than not in any case. But then, the destruction of that base doesn’t seem to have affected much of anything judging from the way nobody seems to give a shit, as you said… I should probably just stop thinking about that space mission already.

    I like to believe, however, that the writers at least got their bases covered in regards as to why Vers didn’t go for blowing up the re-supply ships in the first place: It was heavily implied that this stunt of Slaine’s was only made possible by using Tharsis and its powers of prophecy. Not only for dodging all that space debris as we were shown, but also for finding out the exact re-supply schedule of Trident base. I’m under the impression that Slaine’s martian comrades-in-arms aren’t quite aware of the extent of Tharsis’ capabilities, which would also go to explain why count blondie was dumb enough to challenge Slaine head-on to a duel. Implying he even needs any other excuse than his stereotypical martian arrogance.

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