Aoki Hagane no Arpeggio -Ars Nova- (Episode 11: Sisters)

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Am I the only one who thinks upgraded I-401 is too overpowered?

Main Episode Summary:

Iona sinks 22 Nagara-class Light Cruisers, due to the firepower upgrade she gets from Takao’s reconstruction. Takao by the way is not dead, just integrated into the ship’s systems. Which makes her an easier butt-monkey than she was before. So close to the United States, Hyuuga, Kirishima, Haruna, Takao, and Iona inform Gunzou that they have no idea of the force comp of the American Fog forces, and with I-400 and I-402 right behind them, Gunzou orders action stations and will attempt to sink the twins there before they turn into a major nuisance.

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Somewhere along the line, Kita and Kamikage think of Kamikage’s bold move to entrust the torpedo to Gunzou as well as orchestrate the hit on Makie. But really nothing of importance. These two human politicians were a wasted effort.

Prior to said battle, the I-400 class sisters meet in a distinctively livelier JTN background. What was once blank white space is now filled with flowers and life.  Trying to wrangle more out of Iona, I-400 and I-402 only intiated the meeting in that they would monitor each other for any signs of change. Stopping I-402 before she could get closer in trying to figure out Iona’s answer to what she is (she follows Gunzou even if she doesn’t know why), contact is broken.

Splitting to an imprisoned Kongou, she tries to get Maya to remember her unbroken self, before finally bursting free of her programmed and physical chains, grabbing Maya by the throat and then taking over the doll and merging with her.

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After the cut, the battle is in full swing as I-401 deploys two active decoys controlled by the other Mental Models, and allows all three to act in concert while hiding Iona’s quantum signature in with theirs, making it hard for the twins to find the real I-401. Seeing no change in plan, the twins attempt to sink them all, although a nice clever trap by Hyuuga lands a hit on one of the twins. Sadly though it did not get her.

Before anything more substantial happens, Iona attempts to plead with them, stating their bond as sisters, but to no avail. Iona doesn’t wanna fight but she is left no choice. As Kirishima and Haruna’s decoy launches a torpedo, I-402 intercepts the corrosive warhead torpedo meant for I-400. When asked on the JTN, I-402 merely states that she didn’t want I-402 to get hurt. I-400 recoils in disgust as best an unfeeling doll can, and says she is no different from Iona. Luring her into a wire-trap, a double tap of corrosive torpedoes score a direct hit on I-400’s conning tower, and before I-402 can even reach for her sister’s mental model, she disappears, leaving Iona crying and I-402 in no doubt disbelief.

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Iona cries out that her sisters will no longer be around, from which a dying I-402 states “you only engaged enemies, and dunk them” before we see I-402 sinking into the depths before explosions finish her off.

Regaining her composure, Iona and company eventually encounter the American Fleet of Fog consisting of  one Indiana-class, one Iowa-class, two Virginia-class, one Delaware-class battleships, and two Lexington-class aircraft carriers. Immediately behind themn, would be Kongou in what is essentially her boss form. A melding of not only her main body, but of Maya and the Nagara-class Light Cruisers that were near her. Forming a large, hollowed-out sphere of a monstrosity.

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Main Episode Thoughts:

Sisterly love is rife with corrosive torpedoes. Iona, having obtained a conscience, attempt to reason with the twins. I-402 no doubt was the first to partially succumb to what I swear is gonna be called the Gunzou virus. I-400’s strict adherence to the code was her downfall, but I-402’s curiosity was hers. Unable to comprehend Iona’s non-answer, she attempts to force a reason from Iona, but quickly degrading into an abnormality, even if ever so slight. It’s a tragic tale of sisters fighting, especially now we can see the contrasts between the three. Iona’s emotional growth and obtaining what Freud might describe as her Id, ego, and super-ego. I meanwhile will just say that this Pinocchio just turned into a real girl.

It diverges from the manga, but mainly because in the manga we already treated to a human-like Iona (seriously, she loves anime), and a greater emphasis is put into Gunzou’s quest for his father, the political maneuvering between Kita and Kamikage, the tsundere-ness of Hakugei III’s captain, and so on. But on the whole, we can expect that this is how Iona ‘grew up’. A good episode, not as filling as the one last time, but good nonetheless. Especially telling in this episode is the role sisters share. My two younger ones always fight, but in the end they love each other. no doubt this is what Iona intends to do. Something I don’t think anyone understands, but every ship that has not actively resisted this…virus, has survived. I-400 had kept away from it and died. I-402 had a twinge of a growing soul but still stuck to the Admiralty Code, and died.

Kongou is weird in that she is clearly off her rocker, but still believes in the Admiralty Code even if she was abandoned by it. Or rather, her existence is of no importance to the Code anymore, and freed from it, she’s scared and is lashing out at Gunzou for setting her free from her structured life.

Whatever it is, I look forward to the series (or season?!) finale.
It didnt have the emotional impact, but for trying to cover loose ends, the episode attempted it. I just wasn’t that impressed with episode 11.

Main Episode Gallery:

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About Jusuchin (Military Otaku)

Conservative, Patriotic and an Otaku. Recent grad of George Mason University. I am interested in firearms, politics, Japanese Anime, and military tech.
This entry was posted in Anime, Aoki Hagane no Arpeggio, Quick Thought. Bookmark the permalink.

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