Anime Vice News

EUREKA SEVEN #36 -- Watch & Learn

GAH!

You know, for all the times I’ve said that this show makes me think of EVANGELION, the way it so deftly balances animus and anima in this particular episode brings ESCAFLOWNE to mind. Which is a headier way of saying it pays equal respect to the masculine perspective and the feminine one, giving equal screen time to equally credible girl talk and guy talk.

You’re seeing one of the real benefits of a series being allowed to run for as long as this has, here. This whole episode’s devoted to understated payoffs of character development and relationships that would’ve been squished in a shorter series or cut altogether.

Seriously, the mecha action takes a backseat to a make-up tutorial and a joint shower/sauna session (which was maybe a little weird, come to think of it, unless we chalk it up to cultural customs or that reliable cop movie trope where tough conversations are always hashed out in the communal shower.) It might not sound that exciting that this episode finally addresses Eureka’s scars and Renton’s lack of… * AHEM *… action, but there’s been so much build-up that they’re actually more cathartic than any aerial showdown.

Of course, the biggest payoff comes in Holland finally telling the story of the day Renton’s big sister broke his heart. Again, the “back story” actually plays more powerfully precisely because it never gets that melodramatic. It starts with her getting him to ask him out on what’s basically a whim and theN ends on an argument that’s almost a non-event. Really, the more touching side of the story is how we find out that he actually met Renton as a kid (a scene that eerily reminds me of the pranks I used to pull on my big sisters before their dates.)

Damn it, there’s some genuine pathos to how this outlaw was first introduced to this planetary savior while he was just a shoe-snatching, raspberry-blowing little troll.

Watch this episode, "Fantasia" here and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.

Tom Pinchuk’s the writer of HYBRID BASTARDS! & UNIMAGINABLE. Order them on Amazon here & here. Follow him on Twitter: @tompinchuk

AURON570on March 6, 2012 at 11:42 a.m.

Ahh I still remember Gidget getting flustered when the guys finally saw Eureka in her makeup. Good times.

Destinyheroknighton March 6, 2012 at 3:06 p.m.

That image scare the heck out of me, now she'll hunt my nightmares FOREVER!!!!

RVonEon March 6, 2012 at 3:06 p.m.

The series strength lies, indeed, in the fact that it ran this long while at the same time it was always understood that it wouldn't run past 50 or so episodes. There is a definite arc and narrative that unfolds within that generous constraint which allows for a lot of interesting set-ups, callbacks, and general intertwining of character arcs. I'm glad you decided to stick with this one.

sickVisionz moderator on March 6, 2012 at 6:03 p.m.

That pic could pass as a scene from Princess Jellyfish.

zaldaron March 6, 2012 at 9:27 p.m.

Yup shows that focus on character and make you care more about the action when it happens because of character are usually better....I suppose I could mention a particular show here but I know you are never going to give it another chance so I won't.

I had forgotten this episode and how flabbergasted I was when I saw eureka in makeup...and I was actually happy about that because yes it is rather frightening...the communal shower thing I just kind of put off as a locker room which made it better for me.

Dig Deeper into Eureka Seven

A young boy named Renton has a mech and its pilot, the young-looking Eureka, nearly fall into his lap. He joins them and their renegade group, Gekkostate.

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