Gun No. 9: Sio and Kaoru
Having seen through the enemy’s plan and subsequently saving an entire battleship, Sio’s unfortunate encounter with a piece of shrapnel last week rendered her less than concious as her allies retreated. Naturally they rescued Sio, as she wakes up to find herself in a Japanese hospital. In Japan. So, under direct order’s of the Commander, Sio finds herself with time for a little R&R. Her first act of freedom: check her emails.
Though her injuries were only minor, the Commander specifically sent Sio to a hospital, in her home country no less. Whilst Saint Germain notes that this is partially as a form of repayment for Sio saving her life, he never divulges what the complete reasoning is. DOGOO (the alien) also seemed specifically worried about Nobunagun, though whether this is due to genuine compassion or professional courtesy is unclear.
For the most part, this episode focuses on the somewhat strange friendship between Sio and Asao. Though she has never exaclty been the most confident character in anime, Sio is in a perpetual state of nervousness whenever Asao is nearby. As her first real friend, Sio is still unaware of how to act, what to say, what not to say…and that;s just the beginning. Her uncertainty really shines through due to the fact that she is constantly blushing and stammering whenever she tries to hold even a regular conversation with Asao. Obviously the humourous side of the series, this also serves to prove just how radical Sio’s personality changes when she taps into the soul of Nobunaga.
Just as it was in episode 1, Sio managed to unleash her latent skills when Asao was in grave danger. This time however, Sio did not have an AU Ball in her possession. Communicating with the soul of Nobunaga directly, she managed to kill an Invasion Object by firing an energy bullet from her finger tips. Though such a method clearly uses more energy than an AU weapon, Sio still managed to do something no other E-Gene Holder has. At least as far as we know. Whether unique or not, we also glimpsed just how present Nobunaga is within Sio. Reacting to her pleas, his soul was able to lend power directly to her body, effectively bypassing the AU system. Though only a brief attack, Sio was once again changed by the soul of Nobunaga, bearing her trademark combat grin. Of course, immediately after the shot was fired she was back to good ol’ timid Sio, uncertain of what just happened.
Back at HQ, Vidocq explains the nature of their mission’s failure to a number of DOGOO higher ups, revealing a number of interesting developments in the study of the Invasion Objects. As the series has so clearly set out for us, the Objects wish to evolve to a point of dominance on Earth, rolling right over humanity if need be. However, if that’s the case, why would an army centred on evolution take a step backwards? Though developing as a species of monstrous vertebrates up until this point, the creatures discovered in the underground tunnel are in fact invertebrates. Deducing that it is impossible to devolve, Vidocq concludes that the Objects still retain a storehouse of unevolved beta cells, the original form the Objects before their evolution began. This odd truth once again showcases that the Invasion Objects are much more than simple monsters, a fact belied by their oft employed kamikaze tactics.
Though only brief, this episode also shows the Invasion Objects effect on regular citizens. With fear of attack ever present, a number of Japanese residents decided to stock up on food and move away from the coast. Which in all honesty isn’t a bad plan. As one of the relatively safer countries on the planet, Japan has also seen an influx of foreign patients. That’s right folks, those nameless characters running in the background whilst DOGOO saves the day have lives too. Take Asao for example, unable to wield the same power as Sio, she decided to become a nurse and do what she can to help. A small fact that helps to bring back the human element of the series. Honestly, it’s been monsters and platoons of unbalanced warriors for a while now. You kinda forget what normal is.
So with the world under constant Invasion Object attack, it’s up to the First and Second Platoons to try once more and destroy the underwater tunnel. With their faults revealed by the previous battle, a fact even the prideful Jack accepts, it looks like it might be time for Sio to take on a different role and help her fellow Holders sense the flow of combat. I wonder if Nobunaga is a good teacher?
Check out more Nobunagun Impressions HERE.