SPC Harlock 40-41: Blood
You know Harlock is suicidal when Daiba is at the helm.
Ouch. No, I was joking. Really, I was. The truth is that Daiba has made enormous progress in this series, far more than I would have in the same circumstances (not that I make a very good standard to judge anyone [real or fictional] by). He is silly, but I must admit he grows into some kind of awesome despite retaining his silliness. I think maybe Matsumoto needs him as an archetype of the hero as a work in progress, and this is why we never really get to see Tadashi take off and soar all by himself…he either disappears from the scene altogether (Arcadia of my Youth / Endless Road) or he goes back to square one (Endless Odyssey). So there, I’ve praised him. Let’s move on.
The Mazone send a Special Forces team in to detonate bombs on the deck of the Arcadia. Harlock and crew merrily watch on as they do their job, wondering all along what they’re up to. Oops! Bombs begin to explode. I’m wondering if the sort of spacesuit that we see the pirates wearing here is the inspiration for the weird robotic looking troops in the upcoming Harlock CG film…
A Mazone medic ship shows up requesting assistance, and when the Arcadia opens its doors to help, it immediately comes under fire. What’s wrong with our pirates in this episode? They’re being very dopey here.
Next, the Mazone use a Tokargan civilian ship as shield and it’s damaged by the Arcadia. The pirates find a woman about to give birth there and they take her and her husband on board. In the meantime, Lafresia orders an attack, but a host of civilian ships surround the Arcadia. The Mazone fighters refuse to break through this ring, and we must suppose here that at least some of these civilian ships carry Mazone (if they were all Tokargan I don’t think the fighters would have thought twice before shooting). Lafresia backs off, the baby is born, the end.
It’s a very odd episode to place so far near the end. It would have been much better as episode 12 or 13 than as episode 40. Right here, when we want to see awesome climactic action, I’m underwhelmed and annoyed. Oh well.
P.S. Once more, what’s up with Tokargan anatomy, huh??
P.P.S. Lafresia’s flagship is called Docurass (or Doclus, as I like to write it, from ドクラス). Doclus happens to be the home planet of the Negas, mankind’s alien foe, in Miraizer Ban.
It stars [sic] with a bang. There it is, the great Mazone flagship Doclus, right before the Arcadia. Here is Tadashi Daiba, still obsessed with the death of his father. He wants to shoot. Yuki tries to dissuade him and he looks to Harlock.
Harlock, ah, Harlock. What would the combined faculty of an MBA program say about your management style? They might like it, who knows? Sun Tzu is on many a CEO’s desk…
Daiba turns his head away from the silent eyes of Captain Harlock. He aims, locks and fires. The attack is a failure. Then the Mazone counterattack. Harlock knew this would happen.
It continues with a bang. The Mazone crash their ships into the Arcadia by the droves, with cries of “Glory to the all-powerful Mazone and Queen Lafresia” on their dying lips. By the end, all is left is Tochiro’s ship and the Doclus.
Practically the entire crew of the Arcadia launches a Bullet strike on Doclus. Daiba and Yuki manage to find a throne room and Tadashi goes so far as to stab Lafresia in the chest. Alas, it was Cleo posing as Lafresia. Now Cleo is dead at the hands of Tadashi Daiba. Well done, young man.
It does not end with a bang. I encourage you to watch this if you haven’t. I’m tempted to chime in with Wittgenstein:
“Whereof one cannot speak, one must pass over in silence.” But I’ll say a few words.
The two archenemies wage a good fight and Tochiro’s intervention is excellently placed. To me Queen Lafresia’s words sound as if she were punning. In Japanese “Watashi wa saru” can mean “I will leave” but it can also mean “I am a monkey.” Immediately in the context of Lafresia’s crimson red blood, I almost feel as if she is acknowledging she is human, as to the Mazone humans are nothing but primates (and right they are).
Harlock’s emptiness at this point can only be pointed at and not explained. The narrator does well in citing poetry.