Knights of Sidonia
Episode 2 – Starlit Sky
Attack on Titan in space. That’s what some fans have been saying and I can see why. This show is dark, people get eaten and it’s turning into everything I wanted from a gritty, hyper-detailed mecha anime set in space.
A gigantic alien organism has appeared on a dwarf planet while a mining mission was underway by a team of Gardes from Sidonia. Female pilot Yamano was immediately taken by the Gauna and the first part of this episode is a flashback of her life right before the mission, nailing the emotional impact. It’s revealed that she is a proud pilot who is annoyed that Nagate got accepted without any formal approval. We also get incredible insight into the technical aspects of the Sidonia universe.
One thing that bugs me sometimes is how most mecha shows don’t even bother explaining the intricacies. Like how pilots go to the bathroom on long sorties. Sidonia is impressive in the amount of medical terms it throws your way, once again proving how detailed this project is. Urinary catheters, cervical fractures and cardiopulmonary arrest are all mentioned in this one episode.
We’re thrown back to the present reality with Yamano screaming as she is torn out of her Garde and swallowed by the Gauna. Cue a crazy battle and the Gauna starts to transform, Evangelion style, into the human form of Yamano and Nagate is critically injured. As this madness is happening the brass back at home decide to fire the heavy quantum cannon since there is no way for the pilots to defeat the monster without Kabizashi spears. After an awesome targetting sequence the enormous rail gun is fired. Meanwhile Nagate is somehow revived from his cardiac arrest and springs back into action like a mad dog.
Everyone is ordered to retreat and Nagate is only just pulled out in time before the colossal projectile vaporises the entire dwarf planet. The mysterious captain of the ship meets with the strange, talking heads again and we learn that a hive fleet of Gauna is approaching Sidonia. As Yamano is mourned and celebrated in death, the captain makes a rousing speech to justify a firm and decisive response against the Gauna.
During a class lesson we’re given more info. The people on Sidonia only need to eat once a week due to genetic modification that gives them the ability to photosynthesise. Nagate, however, is from underground and wasn’t part of Sidonian society so he isn’t blessed with photosynthesis. The result is everyone laughing at how he needs to eat all the time.
Other awesome facts are shown such as everyone having to wear a safety belt with carabiner on the ship in case of a major gravity failure (an event is cited where mass casualties occurred). Nagate is still haunted by Yamano’s gruesome death and frequently throws up or passes out.
We learn that the defeated Gauna is not dead. It’s rebuilding its placenta and is expected to come back within 3 days. Information about the Gauna is restricted to the public. They are not told about the strange transformation or any other secrets that we might not know of yet.And there are sure to be plenty of stuff we don’t know about.
A new team of pilots is introduced led by squad leader Akai (Nagate’s squad is led by the silver-haired Kunato) and something called a Gravity Festival is coming up. The two teams seem to be destined to compete against each other. Finally, a bubbly girl by the name of Midorikawa Yuhata suddenly interrupts them by introducing herself to Nagate.
Knights of Sidonia has a lot going for it so far. Fast-paced, gruesome action, attention to detail and a mysterious plot. I can’t wait to see what’s next!
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