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Linebarrels Of Iron Episode 10: Overdrive

December 11, 2008

“Eh? What’s a ‘Christmas Party?’ “

Emi Kizaki, Linebarrels Of Iron Episode 10: Overdrive

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“Yay! Wynautland!”

An island, where its inhabitants are at war with a mysterious faction.

A few seconds later, a gigantic energy beam lances out from the sky and hits the center of the island, destroying the site of battle.

Somewhere in his submarine base, Katou Hisataka is playing around with his keyboard. As Masaki confirms the destruction of the island, Katou gives a smirk.

After the opening sequence, we get a more cheerful starting scene; Kouichi, the bully(I still don’t know his name, LOL), and the Hayase Corps are out shopping for items to make a Christmas dinner. While Makoto and the bully desperately try to get themselves invited to a party that Risako adamantly says is for Kouichi and other childhood friends alone, Kouichi asks if it’s all right for the party to be hosted at Yajima’s home. Risako says it’s okay; in fact, it was Yajima’s mum that invited her.Kouichi is much more relieved upon hearing this, and promises both of them that he would do his best to make. Risako starts to enthusiastically hand out food responsibilities to Kouichi and herself, and the other two male members of the Corps are denied their only chance to have a share of the party again. While they try to rope Emi in to heighten their chances, the plan falls apart when Emi reveals that over in her world, there’s no Christmas.

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“Oh, c’mon, don’t tell me YOU, of all people, would turn down some deeeeeleshous loli.”

Back at JUDA HQ, the JUDA girls dress up in Santa outfits, with varying results. Ishigami and Kouichi approves, but both Miu and Shizuna complain that the outfit is too revealing. Ishigami says that its to prepare for foreign delegates, and Reiji adds that they’re going to prepare a Christmas party as well.

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“Stupid little buster has a nice view of the hot landlady.”

Even the landlady and her dog are helping out. Inside the main lobby of the JUDA dorms, Kouichi is helping out as well by carrying the decorations around. Seeing Emi playing around with the decorations makes him smile, but his expression soon turns to one of embarassment when he realizes that he’s standing on a prime spot directly under Yui.

“BOO! Dohohohohoho~”

Miu nearly makes him drop his box when she comes up from behind. Kouichi, trying to hide his reaction, inquires as to having a Christmas party in JUDA HQ during Christmas itself. Surprisingly, Shizuna is the one that explains it to him; the twins parents died during an experiment while working with JUDA, so now they’re with Ishigami as Machina pilots; Miu lost her family and Rachel, being assigned to JUDA HQ and with both her parents busy with work, hardly ever meet(she does receive a Chirstmas card though).

Kouichi realizes that he’s having it much better than them and apologizes. Shizuna, not used to seing Kouichi apologize, wonders out loud if he already has a Christmas event to go to. To her surprise, Kouichi says yes, and seeing it as a ditching attempt, Shizuna tries to force Kouichi to reveal his secret. The chase extends around the whole lobby area and even the onlookers are enjoying themselves at this typical sight.

“GOD DAMN SHIZUNA YOU’RE FAT!”

The chase ends when Shizuna seats herself on Kouichi, but when she realizes that she’s giving him a front-row seat to what’s under her skirt, she kicks away him so hard that he crashes into a ladder; on with Yamashita on it, to be exact. Both wind up on the floor. Both Kouichi and Shizuna are concerned about Yamashita, but with a lacklustre reply, Yamashita climbs back onto the ladder and proceeds to hang the banners. It’s pretty obvious that he hasn’t recovered since last episode, and the other JUDA members are quick to take note of that.

Both Miu and Kouichi head out to the JUDA dept. store to get extra decorative items, and it is here that Yamashita’s past is revealed by a concerned Miu. Both she and him were once in the same JUDA medical ward, and both ended up being rehabilitated by JUDA as well. Miu admits that she’s piloting the Machinae as a means of repaying a favor. Kouichi realizes that he has had life easy up till the present compared to most of the Machinae pilots in JUDA, but Miu waves it off and tells him not to be so formal with her. Kouichi has some trouble with that, but manages to pull it of. Before he can ask a question however, Miu leads him first to get a present for Emi, who is examining the various items on the Christmas tree in the lobby.

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“Kouichi, I think you should try to cover your mouth the next time you sneeze.”

Fast-forward, where the U.N. delegate(two people?) have arrived and are now with Ishigami in the head-honcho’s office. Delegate member One (I don’t know his name :P) remarks that Ishigami is being too relaxed, and he replies that it’s just to bring out the mood and to put on a good show. Everything quickly cuts to the business level, however, as delegate member Two passes Yui a thumbdrive (filled with information the American gave rather unwillingly), and our mistery island from back then is named; Haifan Island, located in the Philippine Sea, and beset with the most problems left and right in the entirety of Asia. The photo is quickly replaced with an apparently newer one, and the island has become 1/5 island and 4/5 smoking crater. All the JUDA members are shocked, but the relevation that Katou sent a “I hit your land with your own weapon, so celebrate your last Christmas because I’m going to conquere Earth afterwards” video tape a la Al Qaeda-style. To answer Kouichi’s confusion, Ishigami explains that Haifan Island was hit by Helios, a U.S. military satallite hacked into by the Katous.

“This is no International Space Station, my boy, no International Space Station!”

Cut and pan to the satallite, where we see that’s it’s pretty obvious that the satallite is just one gigantic ARMA.

After the break, we see Masaki observing the aftermaths of the Haifan Island operation, with the U.S. increasing its attemptes to break the satallite hack through digital means. While Masaki suggests attacking another location to quieten the U.S., Katou is clearly uninterested, and asks for news on the U.N. Masaki reports that they’ve started efforts to keep the island incident under wraps, and katou, hearing that, decides to move on to the next plan phase in four hours.

“I am the man who walks the path of the heavens trolls.”

Back at JUDA HQ, Yui explains technology that makes the Helios so powerful. Kouichi swears not to let the Katous get what they want, and Ishigami heartily agrees by telling him to go up to space and destroy the satallite. Kouichi meet the idea with disbelief, and both Rachel and Shizuna back it up by referring to Kouichi’s previous battle performances and his overall reliability in general.

“You guys don’t know how awesome I am! I once won a championship for jacking off for forty hours straight!”

Kouichi doesn’t welcome the backstabbing, and boasts that Linebarrel’s Executor will be able to get the job done. Ishigami puts his faith in Kouichi, but announces that he will be sending Yamashita along as backup just in case. Reiji adds that it will be a heavy responsibility for Yamashita, but Kouichi argues that his failure is out of the question.

Kouichi is heading off somewhere after the meeting ended, present in hand, and is lamenting the sorry state of this year’s Christmas when he stumbles upon Yamashita and Ishigami arguing it out as to why it wasn’t Reiji going out. Yamashita thinks that it’s because of Reiji’s previous injuries, but Reiji tells him that Ishigami simply though Linebarrel was better for this situation, and asks if Yamashita could afford to worry about others at the moment, and to request a withdrawal from the mission if he can’t handle the pressure. Yamashita is visibly stunned by the brusque reply.

“Awright Yamashita! Let’s start a war at the gay bar!”

Just as Reiji was about to leave, however, Kouichi confronts him, but Reiji somply shrugs it off and walks away. Kouichi is pissed by this; putting his arm around Yamashita, he promises loudly to no one  in particular (Yamashita maybe) that he’ll do his job and do it well.

“Summoning a giant robot? Pff, so cliche.”

A while later at an American-staffed airbase in Japan, Yamashita and Kouichi are looking at the transport plane that’s going to be responsible for bringing them up there. Kouichi notices the crew around them are laughing at them, presumably doubting their abilities beacuse they’re kids. Kouichi then summons Linebarrel, and haughtily tells them in English that he can’t speak it, before proclaming in Japanese that he’s here to save their asses.  While the crewmembers are awed, their leader and the captain of the plane is much harder to please; Lt. Judy Brown. She tells them to grab a bite before the fight.

Over at Yajima’s house, both Risako and Mrs Yajima are making tomorrow’s Christmas meal. Mrs Yajima thanks Risako for helping out and making the house more lively, while Kouichi’s sister and Saki decorate a small Christmas tree in the living room.

“They forgot my salad… and the toy too…”

Over at the airbase, Kouichi chomps down dinner while Yamashita sits and does nothing. When Kouichi asks, Yamashita replies that he isn’t hungry, and Kouichi shifts the topic to why Yamashita became a Factor. Although reluctant, Yamashita explains though a flashback that in order to save his weak and disease-ridden body that he was cursed with since birth, and also partially out of admiration, inspiration and respect for Reiji when he once gave a demo by summoning Vardant, Yamashita picked up the mantle of being a FACTOR.

“Holy shit, that’s bad service!”

Yamashita attributes his current life and high-school attendance to Ishigami, and Kouichi nearly chokes when he realizes that Yamashita is a year older than him, and he has not been giving the amount of respect a junoir should give to a senior. Yamshita isn’t rattled by it one bit, but things turn out quite differently from Miu’s experience…

The mission offically beings the next day, with Deceive and Painkiller protecting Cape Carnaveral, and Vardant at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Russia. These places are presumed where the Katous would hit due to their value and usage of being able to send support to the main strike team, while Kouichi and Yamashita in the special transport Behemoth launch from Japan. Shizuna drops a message from half the world away telling Kouichi to not screw up, and Kouichi responds in like. Miu joins in to reassure Kouichi that they’ll take care of the ground operations, and even Emi cuts in to give her little bit of advice, which Kouichi can’t understand as usual.

Back at JUDA HQ, Yui announces that all preparations are ready, and Ishigami announces the start of “Operation Supernova”, a  fancy way to say “how to blow the satallite to smithreens”.

The Behemoth launches, and the moment it reaches its required height, the shuttle on its back detaches, and with the Linebarrel in it, flies off to face the satallite. Yui then briefs Kouichi on what and when to use Executor on, and Ishigami pops in to remind Kouichi of what happened the last time, and to exercise cautiona and restrain.

“God damn Yamashita your emo is impermeable. Get some balls!”

Over in the Behemoth, the Lt. sees Yamashita’s anxious face, and remarks than she’d seen many soldiers who’d went out to battle with that look, and so far none of them have returned, since that look means that they’ve forgotten what they are fighting for.

Before Yamashita can think up a proper reply, the warning sounds; Katou troops have engaged the U.N. and JUDA forces at Cape Caneveral and the Baikonur Cosmodrome, with Yuriannu/Tsubaki-hime and Sobi/Talisman taking on the Endo twins/Deceive and Miu/Painkiller respectively at Cape Caneveral, while Sawatari in his ARMA Idaten (I’m guessing, here ^_^|||) takes on Reiji in the Vardant, allowing Dimitirv to get past and continue his strike against the Cosmodrome.

While Ishigami sits back and observes the carnage, Yui reports that the Katous have appeared in Singapore’s Seletar Airbase as well, and Ishimgami starts to worry. Well, he shouldn’t because next we see Domyoji and an entire platoon’s worth of pilots along with Shinobu Igarashi and Eji Kiriyama, the developer of the Jinrai, ready to put their lives (and new machines in Eji’s case) on the line. I must say, the airbase of my country is looking mighty fine come a few years into the future. XD

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“I’M GONNA SCREW YOU KOUICHI! I’M GONNA SCREW YOU SCREW YOU SCREW YOU *cough**choke**wheeze*”

Back to Kouichi, where the shuttle he’s in is suddenly hit by laser fire. The Linebarrel is unharmed, but Kouichi’s annoyed expression turn to one of surprise to find out that the entire satallite is an ARMA… and the fact that there’s another of Katou’s brigade commanders to face him; specifically, commander no. 8, Osei Riku. Possibly and probably the worst and most sadistic of the lot.

Well, welcome to the first cliffhanger episode of Linebarrels. Firstly, for the lack of action pictures in this post; didn’t have much time and didn’t find any awesome pictures I could poke fun at.

We have the big fight between the satallite and JUDA for this time, and it seems that my predictions for a Linebarrel V.S. Jinrai isn’t going to happen (at least in the near future). For those who’re worried, it’s pretty safe that Makoto might survive this, since the director isn’t Tomino and Makoto plays a pretty big role in the story; there’re still too many unanswered questions about him, so he can’t die yet.

Well, I what with the messed-up anime version of the storyline (which I now see as an alternate universe retelling), things are now rumbling along pretty nicely by such standards; at least while Gonzo introduces new characters, they didn’t bump off the old ones, and those waiting for Riku’s appearance shoild be relieved. For those who’re new to this, be preapred to familiarize yourself with the most self-righteous and pompous mech pilot to ever walk the world of anime. Well, sans Kira Yamato, but Kira’s fighting for the good guys.

The animation isn’t much to judge at; in fact, there’s naught to judge at all, since the fighting only occured nearing the end. We’ll have to wait for next week, and hopefully they’ll give us Episode 9-quality.

Now, there’s Yamashita. While I said that they didn’t bump off original characters, I wish they’d kept the personalities the same. Sure, Yamashita might be a pacifist in the manga but definitely not a coward or a low-esteem person. In fact when it comes to combat, Yamashita is supposed to be an excellent support.

Aside from that, it’s sorta funny to see “Singapore” pop out of nowhere in an anime. And of all places to build possible mass-driver technologies, why Seletar and not Changi Airport? XD

Also, I LOL’ed at Kizaki hanging her Santa constume boot on the tree.

If you want to see Linebarrels end properly and for more nice CG in the future, please support Gonzo. Buy their stuff!

If not, they won’t even have enough cash left to make a decent burial ending for Linebarrels. T_T

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