Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans – 14

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GIBO picks up where it left off, with surplus mobile suits the likes of Shino wants to learn to fly, and Kudelia unsure of what to do about Mika’s kiss. Oh, and in case you missed all those suspicious sidelong glances last cour, this episode makes it clear as crystal: Fumitan has orders to lure Kudelia into a trap where she’ll be assassinated as the leader of a rebellion.

But while Fumitan may always appear stoic, she’s still conflicted about this plan. Kudelia doesn’t aid Fumi’s resolve to betray her when she comes in for advice about love.

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The intricate plan Fumitan is a merely one gear in casts an ominous shadow on Tekkadan’s arrival at the Dort Colonies to deliver some Teiwaz cargo before continuing on to Earth, which is in spitting distance. The ominousness only rises when we see Gaelio planning a “drill” with his family flagship, assuring Ein he’ll have his shot at revenge.

Kudelia unknowingly thwarts Fumitan’s plan when she requests to visit the commercial colony Dort-3 rather than the cargo colony Dort-2, for “shopping.” Atra asks to tag along, Orga assigns Mika as their protection, and he notices Fumitan’s sudden frustration, even if he may not be sure what it’s about. Finally, Biscuit asks to come along as well. So if this is a three-way shopping date, there will be two chaperones of both genders.

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I’m not sure why I assumed Kudelia just needed to get her luxury goods fix, but she instead heads to the nearest Space Costco to snatch up clothes, soaps, and other hygenic products for the Tekkadan crew. In explaining the highly practical purchases, Kudelia brings up the fact that the crew doesnt’ bathe enough, and the Isaribi, frankly, stinks to high heaven. I’d never thought about that either, but now I am; Tekkadan is not the sterile, antiseptic environment that, say, Gjallarhorn ships seem to be.

The reason for Biscuit accompanying the group is also a surprise: turns out he and his sisters are originally from Dort (albeit the slums), and his older brother Savarin is still living and working there. Atra convinces him to give Sav a call and arrange a meeting. The thing is, the cubicle-occupying Savarin has a news bulletin in front of him warning them to be on high alert for Tekkadan, believed to be a rebellious element up to no good in this law-and-order sphere.

Meanwhile, at Dort-2, Orga, Eugene, Shino and Yamagi get an unusually warm welcome from the cargo depot employees, who call them “knights” of their savior, Kudelia. Their lives are almost as menial and disposable as Orga’s crew back when they were CGS, while the richies on Earth sit around soaking up profits. They’ve been told Tekkadan is there to help them start a rebellion, and to Orga & Co.’s surprise, the Teiwaz cargo turns out to be arms for just that purpose.

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The workers, mere cogs in the schemers’ design, were also told Kudelia would be among them, so this is the trap that was meant to close around her. Gjallarhorn conveniently shows up, but the workers take up their arms and force them to retreat (so much for the Gjallarhorn troops being better trained and motivated here, huh?).

Not knowing what the hell is going on or who put them up to this, all Orga & Co. can do is try to get the hell out of this mess, ordering Merribit to launch the Isaribi. But it looks like the ink is already dry on the fiction about them being a “ship of hope” for the rebelling workers of Dort. At least Naze doesn’t seem to be a part of it, but rather only thinks Tekkadan screwed up somehow.

As all that excitement going down, Kudelia is having far greater difficulties: she can’t summon the words to ask Mika about his feelings, even when she gets some time alone with him. It’s looking like the kiss was just a kiss, so far. As for Fumitan, she’s still conflicted about disobeying orders (could they be from Orcus, if that’s an “O” in the signature of the orders?) and not making sure Kudelia was on Dort-2.

Like the workers, she’s taken the first step to a new life; in their case one where they’re fighting rather than working for The Man; and in Fumi’s case, protecting Kudelia rather than working for those who want her out of the picture. In both cases, there may be no going back.

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P.S. On first glance I’d call the new OP at least the equal of the first, while the new ED, while solid, isn’t quite as strong as its predecessor. Also, in the preview, we’re teased with images of McGillis wearing a mask, and talking about gaining the life of a new man. But he may only be joking.

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Author: braverade

Hannah Brave is a staff writer for RABUJOI.

8 thoughts on “Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans – 14”

  1. Orcus? Where do you see the O, I’m pausing it now and I don’t see any signature for Fumitans letter. I mean, we both know it’s Nobliss behind this after all.

    1. Mind you, I just saw an O on the tablet Fumi was reading, and wondered who’s named O in the show.

      We’re in agreement that Nobliss is the mastermind…maybe this is a clue that Orcus is also involved?

      1. It could be a G based on the flourish, for his last name Gordon, but I won’t discount that possibility, as it could also be an OC for Orcus Company.

  2. My gosh, it has been so long!

    But Gundam IBO comes back with another stellar episode as Tekkadan once again gets wrapped up in another fight for freedom.
    Fumitan finally reveals herself as a spy, and we see how in depth Nobliss’ plan was. And he’s using the colonies as pawns, with Kudelia to be assassinated.

    Biscuit has an older brother that is suddenly introduced, named Savarin (another food name), and while next episode pv might show him to be a slimy dude, I have a feeling that he’ll do right by the end. Though he’ll probably die in the process.

    How will Orga find a way out of this? And Nobliss’s moves will discredit Kudelia and what she stands for, as well as Tekkadan unless they can turn this around.

    As far as mechs go, Shino is going to be getting is own mech, Akihiro is away getting his new Gundam remodeled. Gaelio and Ein are going to go attack Tekkadan at the colony. And Fumitan is in a crisis right now, and I don’t know if she’s going to come out of this alive.

    We got a new OP and ED, both of which are only really okay. However, we get to see new things like a new female pilot on McGillis’ side, and new mechs for everybody. Also, it looks like McGillis has finally decided to completely embrace his Char clone status, with an actual mask and new red mech.

    I’m pretty excited for what happens next and what Tekkadan is going to do now that they are wrapped up in this colony rebellion.

  3. Really, really liked this episode. The last arc overstayed its welcome a bit but this one brought us back into the main plot in a great way, hitting the ground running. It also showed once again how good this show is (when it chooses to be) at having tense, exciting episodes even with no mobile suits at all.

    Also excited to see in the new OP that the Barbatos seems to be getting a new heavy weapon. Couldn’t really tell what it was, but it’s clearly swinging something new in one shot that looks rather large.

  4. Okay, so I am not that impressed with the new OP song. Not as powerful as “Raise Your Flag”. But the OP itself is interesting. Looks like Kudelia will finally be at the forefront of the story, what with her being prominently shown here.

    And I really like how the series uses the mundane slice of life moments to reinforce its larger themes. The shopping trip, and the reason for it, is an interesting reminder of how neglected both the Tekkadan boys was during their CGS days and the whole other colonies. It also lines up nicely with scenes in the ED showing Atra and Kudelia hanging washed clothes in the corridors of the Isaribi.

    And while I did say before that I don’t want to see McGillis donning a Char mask (he is already a good character as he is IMHO), I am intrigued with the whole idea of him wanting to be another person when wearing the mask. I hope it isn’t as sloppy as, say, Graham Aker’s Mr. Bushido Char clone in 00.

    1. What I find intriguing about McGillis’s mask is that both versions of him show up in the OP, suggesting that he actually is using two different personas and playing some kind of long con on Gjallarhorn. That said, I also wish he had just never acquired a mask.

      I agree the new OP isn’t quite as good as the first. That said, I actually like the ED more, if not for the song then for what it shows. That ED actually gives character development. It establishes and strengthens the plot and characters, which is very cool.

      1. Yeah, hopefully McGillis ‘ Masked Alternate Persona isn’t as mindscrewy as Lady Une in Gundam Wing (not actually a Char clone, but a weird case of literal split personalities) of as dumb as Graham Aker/Mr. Bushido, Luin/Mask, or Zeheart/Masked Zeheart.

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