UltraSeven X 5 - Peace Maker
Not really sure what to think of this episode. For the most part, I felt misled by the weak alien(s). Were they as good as they appeared, or were they hiding more sinister intentions?
I don't see anyone mention it (granted I've checked only a few discussion threads, and none at UltramanLah!--since they don't separate discussions by episodes, and I'm still behind--so I could be mistaken), so maybe I'm seeing things, but the powerful alien in this episode reminded me much of Lesser Bogal from Mebius, both in designs and how they move.
And on that note, this show had a human size fight again in this episode, on a flimsy reason that this alien probably didn't have a bigger form so it would be terribly unfair to just step on him.
Count me in as another person who thought the weak alien (who, from now on, will be referred to as the "oripham" guys as I have no idea what their real name is) might attack Seven X. (Literally, I couldn't bear to watch so I paused that part for a few minutes.) In my defense, the guy looked positively evil when he got to the oripham. OTOH, the title of this episode is Peace Maker. And for this type of things, titles usually don't lie.
The mysterious girl, Elea (I'm using her name from now on since it's shorter), appeared again and somehow didn't bother me this time. I don't know if that was because she stopped speaking as if she only knew one phrase, or because what she said were truly meaningful.
(I should probably talk more about things that bother me. When I do, the show seems to address them in later episodes, ha ha. Not that I think I can predict the future or anything. I'm just amused that as soon as I complain about Elea, she seems to have changed a little for the better.)
That is one depressing message about war. Which I've always known, but I still react to the brutality of it all, seeing both those planets destroyed and presumably all lives on them. Keeping peace at all cost seems to equate to no one truly wins in the end. And in that regard, the oripham guys reminds me of the Arbs from Mebius.
The following may be a bit off-topic, I don't know. But I'm seeing the parallel so I'm putting my thoughts down anyway...highlight to read them.
Both Arbs and oripham guys may view themselves as being peaceful, but I think they are just as ruthless, if not more so than their enemies. They also both seem to have no individuality whatsoever. (The oripham guys have same faces; Arbs, for all their beautiful outward appearances, seem like parasites, and not necessarily the good kind, I'm sorry to say.) Personally, I believe these aliens are less than honest, hiding behind their ideals to justify destroying their enemies. Disregarding the uncertainty that their enemies may or may not deserve to be eliminated (well, I would say there is no uncertainty in the case of Bogal, but that's not my point here), I dislike the way these aliens manipulate and rally non-suspecting people (humans and Seven X (sort of) here, Tsurugi (Hikari) in Mebius) into helping them, by portraying themselves as being good guys and as the ones being wronged. I suppose what I mean to say is I don't care for their ways of "peace making" and prefer less deceptive approaches. (But then again, I have to admit that saying something or someone is being "deceptive" is for the most part subjective. For all I know, the arbs and oripham guys may truly believe the ways they do things are honest and not at all wrong.)
Back to this episode, I wonder who may have been watching/observing/spying on Jin and Elea. There is this sort of weird, distorted and somewhat sinister looking stuff on camera that seems to focus on them sometimes when they are together. And for that reason (that the camera doesn't look clean nor clear), I don't think their watcher(s) are good guys. (I'm not explaining this very well, so perhaps I should just take a screencap of one such scene. Only that I can't cap anything at the moment.)
UltraSeven X 6 - Traveler
To me, this episode doesn't seem to belong in a toku show, let alone an Ultraman show. In that regard, its tone/feel reminds me of episode 2, and I've said roughly the same thing about that episode. (I'm also thinking of the X-Files again, with the alien in this episode having/being UFO.) However, similarities between these two episodes aside, I'm glad this episode has a sort of happy ending, since I'm not exactly fond of violence in the shows I watch.
I love how Elea's actress makes her wide-eye gestures. They just seem so exaggerated and kinda support my theory that she is not human.
This is something that has teased the back of my mind since episode 1: I don't understand how Jin knows where he lives if he cannot remember anything else. I think the address is stored in his car or something, so that explains how he could end up there after he lost his memory. Still, how could he be certain that it is really his home? (True, he has to let the door(?) read his hand, but he's part of DUES, I think he can enter any home, as seen in this episode.)
I kept thinking I should know the token human in this episode, the guy unsatisfied with his IT job, but for the life of me, couldn't recall where I'd seen him before. (Solved. Takao is played by Mitsuru Karahashi, who is perhaps best known in his role of Kaido in Kamen Rider 555. Again I lament my face recognition skill. But, in my weak defense, I haven't watched Faiz since shortly after it ended.)
Apparently, it has been only several months since Jin has lost his memory. I kinda want the past Jin back, if only because I like that brief glimpse of him then more than I like him in most of these six episodes. He seemed to have hints of playfulness and the seemingly not taking life seriously attitude, kinda similar to Agent K. But then again, not remembering your past might take the fun out of living. And, for practical purposes, I don't think the show can afford to have two main characters with mostly the same personalities. It's boring, for one thing. Also, if there is no real difference, the super hero would probably get all the love. And in the worse case scenario, no one may get any love at all if they are not distinguishable.
And yeah, S and K's bickering is so very cute. And I like when they put their heads together, literally. Perhaps they'll get together? (Seriously, S, why say you're dating Jin
I'm probably not very trusting (and I'm sure I'm not the only one), for when the alien (soul of light) says it means no harm, I go 'yeah, right' and agree with Jin that it just basically pretties up all its purpose/plan regarding the IT guy. But in the alien's defense, it truly hasn't caused anyone it has attacked a lasting damage, or any injury for that matter. I just find the way it just comes inside the IT guy a little disturbing, not exactly giving him any choice. But it has been established prior that he dreams to travel across the stars, so his acceptance hasn't exactly come out of nowhere.
To bring this back to the happy end I alluded to earlier, unlike in episode 2, the token human doesn't die--although that point is somewhat debatable--and the alien is allowed to go free. Although my cynical mind would always wonder if the IT guy would truly find peace traveling with the alien through space like that. It's not like he has no more choice left on this earth...
...which then reminds me of the woman in the bar he's left behind, not that he seems aware of that fact. She seems perceptive. As a few people say, I also believe she's referring to Elea when she talks to Jin about his supposed girlfriend. I'll even attempt to give some half-baked reason to support this. Apparently Jin never knew S before he lost his memory (because K didn't seem to know her then either) and only realized (along with K) who she was in episode 4, so it was highly improbable that she would have gone anywhere with Jin or be seen with him three months ago or more, the time he supposedly usually hung out at that bar with Takao. And since Ultraman shows usually don't pull new regular characters out of nowhere, especially at halfway point through the series, by the process of elimination, only Elea is the logical conclusion.
So halfway through the series, and they still don't have more on Seven X than to ask 'who is he?' or 'what is his purpose?' Ha ha. Seriously though, this society appears to not care very much nor very aware of stuff not directly affecting it. It casually dismisses the destruction of those two planets in episode 5 as being merely 'foolish', for instance. I would be tempted to say it's just one (or a few) person's opinion/sentiment, but since Elea predicts what the newscaster would say, I have to assume that this dismissive attitude is pretty much the norm in this society. I can't say I approve much. Don't get me wrong, people are allowed to and should be selfish. That's normal, and healthy. But this society is acting like it exists in a void, unconcerned by anything or anyone. By right it should do more than ask silly questions. DUES, especially, should try to ascertain more about Seven X. (Come to think of it, unlike defense teams in other Ultra series, DUES doesn't seem to have any real plan to deal with alien invaders either except to tell the agents to investigate/attack it/them each week.) I don't know, the citizens in this mostly dead town appears to be rather sluggish and way too passive. They just don't seem aggressive enough to ensure their own survivals, except perhaps on the smallest scale. For that reason, I think most people's lazy and careless 'the-world-revolves-around-us'-type attitude, the certainty that most their needs would be taken care of by the society itself may put this society on a speedy path to self-destruction.
Who, or, more accurately, what exactly is DUES? Halfway through in other series, viewers would already have met at least a few of the higher up officials, but in this series, it's like the higher up may not exist at all. The commands seem to come from some elaborate computer programming, which practically lives inside the wrist device thingie (too lazy to look up real name, sorry) of each agent. (Again, that begs the question, who set up the programming in the first place?) Seriously though, if the captain (or whatever rank the commander who gives orders to the agents is holding) of DUES has at least once made an appearance in the flesh, I missed it completely.
Why would Elea not come right out and tell Jin what he wants to know? At this point in the series, I begin to find her secretive behavior a little tiring. Disregarding the obvious reason of keeping the viewers in suspense, what could possibly be her reason? Is it because she doesn't know the whole story herself? Or someone(s) higher up order her not to speak? Or, building on that, if she does reveal the secret connected to Jin, there might be some negative consequence, to her, to Jin, to anyone else? It's almost like, as far as Elea is concerned, things must stay static at all cost. If keeping Jin ignorant of his past is the price, so be it; it is a sacrifice that cannot be helped. Still, I'm sure I'm making this to be more of a big deal than it actually is.
Is the current Jin alien or human? Based from what I've seen, he could turn out to be either, and I find the answer, if/when it is eventually revealed, would not effect me either way. (Perhaps I might prefer him to be alien, if I like him more, but I really don't think I would care either way whether he's alien or human, whatever my feeling on his character is.)
From what little I see of episode 7 preview, this show again reminds me of Nexus (in this case, strangely, same episode number, 7). I believe it might have something to do with an alien/monster appearing over a factory. (For that reason, Mebius would qualify too, and for the same episode number, 7.) And I keep thinking I should recognize the guest actress in this episode too. (Her voice, what little I hear of it, sounds familiar...)