Gatchaman Crowds ep 9-12 final impressions

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So what is probably the most colorful show this season is now over. And I have to admit, these last 4 episodes really brought a sense of adrenaline that I’ve been missing from this show until now. The ending is disappointing, but the build-up to the climax is well-planned and exciting. GO BIRD!

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The things that I like about this finale is that it makes sure to connect loose ideas and tell some genuinely good social commentary. Ultimately it wants to use GALAX as both a symbol of the internet and its possibilities. The complexity of capitalism and hierarchy that are meant to keep order often hinder the chance to end crisis, while the undisciplined internet produces groups of people that can easily be unified on both sides. The CROWDS work as added power to those users, and thus directly represent human nature based on their ease in destruction and rescue.

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Besides the issue with GALAX representing the pros and cons of democracy, it’s Hajime and Berg Katze’s contrast that really kept me interested throughout. Despite comparitively little screentime with both of them together, they share as much similarities as differences. Both have very little care for what others think of them, extremely bright personalities, and able to influence the hearts of everyone near them.

The only difference between the two is there ideals of ultimate joy. Berg Katze enjoys the suffering of other beings, and his previous destruction of planets depended on his unparalled skill at breeding hate in them. Hajime on the other hand is an extreme optimist, seeing the good in whatever being that she comes across, to the point where she blatantly states she will not kill Berg Katze and accept him for who he is. And it’s this one difference that make them a fascinating foil to eachother.

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However, most characters suffer from this flood of ideas and end up overshadowed by them. For them, this is supposed to be their defining moment of actually acting like heroes again, and yet rather than highlight character development and emotions, it puts their ideals as the focus instead. The only real development we have that isn’t influenced by ideals is Hajime’s pure attitude melting the hard hearts of fellow Gatchaman. Yet that remains obsolete, as while she was definitely the highlight of the show(along with Berg Katze), her character is really more of a mouth for the ideas of being a hero rather than an actual character.

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And no more is this evident than in the ending itself. Hajime calls her mother one last time before the credits roll, only to absorb Beg Katze into her in the epilogue. Thematically it works out by having the purest individual keep inside the greatest evil. Even the spread of GALAX working as a true democracy works as a fitting resolution when presented the themes of cooperation and trust regardless of the dangers. The problem with this is that’s all we get in this epilogue. We don’t find out about what happened to any of the characters aside from Hajime cheerfully walking while Berg Katze is cursing in her.

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This is essentially a style-over-substance series that’s trying to leave social commentary on the internet and the restrictive ways of government and business. However, it also gets lost in its themes and unique style that it forgets the goal of a telling a unified story.

It’s definitely creative, and has enough twists to keep me interested until the end. That being said, the characters feel like tools for the ideas it has, and many plot points that you think would be important end up being pointless. I’ll still recommend it for the social commentary and Hajime, since it’s definitely a unique take on the super sentai genre. But much like the Crowds ability in GALAX, I wouldn’t want to sign up again.

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About theweirdman

I'm a long time follower of anime, and will continue to do so for years to come

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