Soul Link

June 19, 2009


There aren’t really much space military animes that comes to my mind besides Galaxy Angel so what are the chances of me watching Soul Link when I first came to know about it? Well, my gut feeling told me to give it a try and I did just that. Not to say the series is that ground breaking but I couldn’t really say I regretted watching it either. Yup, a typical neutral on-the-fence answer.
 
Based on the eroge of the same name, you can expect a little fanservice in the anime in addition to the sci-fi action drama and romance genre. I’m not sure how closely the anime follows the game because well, I didn’t really play it nor heard about it till I watched the anime and did a little research of my own after that.
 
Set in the near future of 2045, the series centres around a group of young military cadets who are going to undergo some military training onboard the space station Aries, which is hovering just above the Earth’s atmosphere. Of course, along the way, they will encounter their first real life obstacle in the form of a space terrorist group (even crime has evolved into a high-tech manner), in which an unexpected turn of event will soon unfold will then turn into a matter of survival. Sounds interesting? You decide.
 
As seen in episode 1, we are introduced to the several characters that will set the tone and pace of this series. Like Ryouta Aizawa, a third year cadet preparing to board to Aries with his classmate and childhood friend Sayaka Nagase. Along the way, they also meet up with their 1 year senior friend Nao Morisaki, who is also a student in the military academy but under the medical division, and Kazuhiko Nitta who specializes in computer programming and hacking (I guess such skills are necessary seeing that the future is highly computerized and humans depend very much on them). First thing which will hit you is that why is Kazuhiko’s uniform different from the other military cadets? From a different division or a higher rank? However, I find that other characters who are so too dressed in a green outfit as compared to Kazuhiko’s white one. Moving along, Ryouta also bumps into a mysterious busty lady (literally, he tripped and got one of his hands on her boobs). But she didn’t scream harassment and just walked away.
 
As the military cadets get onboard Aries, we are introduced to Cellaria Markelight, an instructor for the cadets on Aries. However, Aries isn’t just a space station for military cadets as it also hosts civilians but both the military and civilian sectors are strictly kept apart and there are no contacts between both sides. Too bad because Sayaka’s best friend, Aya Sugimoto has told Sayaka how she intends to go visit the latter onboard Aries, depressing Sayaka very much. Lost Aya bumps into 2 characters which viewers can easily tell that they are going to be a terrorist planning to hijack Aries or something like that. They are the tough looking commander Gale Lantis and a skinny petite former soldier Karen Tachibana. Also onboard Aries, we see that the lady Ryouta bumped into, Yuu Yamanami, isn’t an ordinary civilian as she possess firearms hidden underneath her clothes and has an air of suspicion around her. Also, a steward of the Aries space station, Shigemichi Morimoto (OMG! It’s that low sexy seiyuu Norio Wakamoto!) who is helpful to attend the needs of all those onboard Aries.
 
This episode also features a little fanservice like how Ryouta has just finishing taking a bath and going out while Sayaka is coming in only to see him fully naked. In her embarrassment and panic, she slaps him. Also a little naughty kid flipping up Nao and Sayaka’s skirt and it feels like the producers are teasing viewers to get a taste of a little fanservice. Does that kid’s mother ever teach him manners not to flip up a girl’s skirt (or 2 skirts at the same time, in his case)? What more a military personnel. If those girls are the violent kind, he’d be finished by now. When Ryouta informs the duo how his genius brother who skipped 2 grades at the military, Shuhei, is coming onboard, Nao gets the shock of her life so much so she drops her food tray. We can tell that this girl is pretty much in love with this Shuhei guy but to the extent of dropping her tray?
 
In episode 2, Shuhei indeed prepares to come onboard Aries but he bumps into another military cadet who is running late, Aki Nitta. After a little spat because Aki stepped on his bag as Shuhei was trying to pick up his dropped stuff, they got onboard a transport ship to Aries along with Aya. But Aki is in awe after getting to know that this guy is the said genius of the academy once she gets to know his name. Onboard Aries, Ryouta decides to help Sayaka see her friend though they have to do it all in precise timing. That’s because the military cadets’ training is to begin right away and through some survival training as they are divided into 2 groups. The plan is to let Sayaka get ‘taken out’ early in the game while Ryouta tries to stall for more time. During that time, Sayaka has to sneak out and hurriedly go see Aya and return before the training ends. If they get busted, it’ll be the end for them. So everything goes according as plan and I don’t know why Kazuhiko is bloody adamant in hunting down Ryouta. Seeing him as his eternal rival, eh?
 
Sayaka manages to meet up with Aya just in time to talk things and go back. Previously, Aya meets Morimoto and shows him a picture of her and Sayaka together and it seems Morimoto’s expression tells us he knows Sayaka. Meanwhile Cellaria meets Shuhei and Aki and gives them a tour around Aries. Later as Aki tries to find her class, she bumps into Yuu who is alone in some control room and wonders if she’s part of the military but Yuu denies and says she’s just a lost civilian. Hmm… The training comes to an end when Nao was the one who ‘shot’ Ryouta. When the cadets regrouped, Ryouta is a little worried because Sayaka hasn’t come back yet and it’s roll call time. Thankfully, she just made it back in time. In the end, when Shuhei makes his appearance to the trio, Nao gets all emotional and is so glad to see him like as though she hasn’t seen him for a very long time. Wait, that’s true too. I don’t know if Shuhei’s being cheeky or not because the first thing he asked Nao was the colour of her panties. Pfft. However their happy reunion is cut short when the entire station goes into red alert mode as the alarm goes off.
 
But the situation on Aries returns to normal soon after in episode 3 as the Aries had just experienced a near-miss of something. Well, it’s that terrorist ship actually. Since their presence have been known, they’ll have to bust in now. Because of that, the military has evacuation orders to safely evacuate the civilians and new cadets. Sayaka panics when she doesn’t see Aya and goes searching for her but ends up meeting with Morimoto instead. He agrees to help her find Aya. Where is Aya? Okay, she’s changing her clothes when somebody pushes her into a locker, thus trapping her inside. Meanwhile Shuhei who is searching for Ryouta and Sayaka bumps into Yuu. He takes her with him seeing that she mentioned that she’s a lost civilian. The space station experiences a large jolt, which means the terrorists have docked. What a way to make an entrance. Yeah, this one is even ‘grander’. When they busts in, Karen starts shooting her trigger happy self and starts slaughtering nearly everyone in the control room even though there have been orders not to kill. I mean, if everybody is dead, then you won’t be able to take hostages, right? Ah well, better make do with all that’s left. Haha, goodbye to all those side characters. I really didn’t expect them to die, but seeing that this soon turning into a survival genre…
 
Ryouta, Sayaka, Nao, Shuhei, Kazuhiko and Cellaria meet up in the second control room and thinks of a way to escape since the terrorist are in control of the first one. It’s going to be tough seeing that all the escape pods has been used for the evacuation so they have this control room as their ‘base’ for the time being. Don’t worry, Kazuhiko’s a pro in this area. As the terrorists group goes in search for any more hostages, Karen stumbles upon Aya trapped in the locker and brings her back to Gale and the rest. In the meantime, our young heroes decide to play, erm, hero just to show the terrorists that they aren’t useless kids as they plan to fight back. Wait a minute. Hand pistols against machine guns? Shuhei and Cellaria take the frontline as they both killed a terrorist each (OMG! Can’t believe they did that. Ah well, they’re just side characters and besides, it’s a hidden message to tell us never to have mercy on them). So okay, they get their fare share of injuries of gunshot wound. Hey, it’s give and take. Karen appears as she engages in a hand to hand combat with Shuhei but the latter proves he is a class above her. Shuhei manages to get back to his party just before the door closes but Karen is pissed off with her ‘defeat’.
 
A concern Nao rushes to Shuhei’s side in episode 4. Being the good guys, they noticed a fallen terrorist is still warm and can’t leave a poor soul like him to die. Thus they decide to take him in for treatment and probably get some answers. Kazuhiko on the other hand is able to intercept a message sent by the terrorist to Earth. This terrorist group, Harallax, wants the release of their comrades in exchange for the hostages. They also don’t want any other ships near Aries. Failing which, they’ll drop several nuclear bombs onto Earth. As Shuhei visits Nao in the medical room, Nao has a short flashback of how she was enthralled by Shuhei during their younger days with Ryouta. Basically, the brothers managed to nurse a wounded bird back to strength when she couldn’t and ever since then Nao has been friends with them. Probably a reason why she entered the medical division. Back in reality, the duo witnesses a disturbing scene. The wounded terrorist’s body starts to turn into water. It tries to attack them but shortly evaporates. Shuhei advices Nao not to tell everyone about this as not to cause panic.
 
Shuhei returns to the rest and because everyone doesn’t know Yuu’s name and she is reluctant to talk, Shuhei decides to nickname her Rocket Breast Girl! With that kind of embarrassing name, I guess it’s enough for anyone to at least tell their name. Kazuhiko then informs them that he has received a message from another sector of Aries. It is a distress message saying that they are civilians and needing rescue. However they are puzzled as that sector is supposed to have no air so Shuhei decides to take a little maintenance ship over there to check things out. Shuhei finds Aki and Morimoto there and that Aki was the one who sent the message. The air leak alarm was just a decoy so that the terrorist will not suspect anything in this sector. The trio head back though it gets a little cramped for 3 people to sit in a one-sitter. Haha, the cramp space make it seem Shuhei is like sexually harassing Aki and Morimoto quipped how he too wants to have a try at it. Once they return, we find out that Kazuhiko and Aki are siblings. Quarrelling siblings. Ah, the love-hate relationship.
 
Episode 5 starts off with a short flashback. We see that Kazuhiko and Aki come from a high class wealthy family and Aki always hate it when people starts comparing her to her brother. In present time, since Aki too is a computer genius, she starts arguing with Kazuhiko who should be in control of the control room. Morimoto puts a stop to their bickering and has Aki to man the controls. Disappointed Kazuhiko goes off but meets Shuhei. He thanks him for saving his sister and even though he hates him, he respects him too. Huh? Ryouta tries to lift the tense and gloomy atmosphere as he suggests the gang to take some pictures of themselves while Morimoto makes some grub for the gang. Meanwhile Aya is seen serving the terrorists. Has she become their servant? Well I guess it’s better to have a cute girl taking care of meals rather than having all the hostages idly tied up. Furthermore, Gale thinks she isn’t a threat and with her serving the rest, the others will feel a little at ease. They then prepare to strike back at the good guys. Ryouta and Yuu are paired up and taking turns to guard the door which divides both sides when they heard a blast. Shuhei and Cellaria rushes there and upon arrival, Yuu and Ryouta retreats to the control room.
 
Shuhei opens fire but to his surprise finds Gale standing with a transparent shield to deflect his bullets. Gale starts firing but as Aki watches from the control room, she suspects something amiss. After activating other cameras onto the screen, we find out that Gale’s attack was just a diversion (he isn’t advancing, see). Kazuhiko rushes to the other terrorist group and manages to catch them off guard and killing those underlings. Karen faces off with Kazuhiko and we see this computer whizz kid isn’t just good with electronics because he kicks ass too. Kazuhiko plans to use some explosive to blast the path so that when the air leaks, the automatic door while come shutting down making it impossible for the terrorist to cross over anymore. As Kazuhiko reports back to Aki, he hears her screaming to Yuu not to do it.
 
This is what happened while Kazuhiko was fighting with Karen. In episode 6, while Shuhei and Cellaria are facing Gale, Cellaria charges towards Gale to prevent him from shooting Shuhei. She then tells Aki to close the door. Because Aki is reluctant, Yuu just calmly went over to press the button and thus separate Shuhei from Cellaria. According to Yuu’s common sense, she has too or else everyone will be in danger. Sacrificing 1 life is better than all? Even though the gang are saddened over Cellaria’s capture and has received a picture of her semi-naked and tortured, we see that she’s alive and well. Uh huh. In short, Cellaria is a traitor and part of the Harallax! Didn’t see this coming. So she does know Gale and all that was just a set up. Pretty convincing. She discards her military uniform for a more darker and revealing outfit and lets loose her hair. Now she looks more like a villain. Meanwhile Shuhei is resting from his wounds when he notices the bullet shot on his stomach has been healed as though he’s never been shot in the first place. Shuhei then experiences a weird horrifying dream whereby everybody gets killed before being awakened by Nao’s voice to get a hold of himself. Aki and Kazuhiko sense something amiss like how all communications with Earth has been cut off. Shuhei gets another nightmare vision whereby all the terrorist starts killing each other while Gale tells Karen and Aya to run.
 
Shuhei decides to attempt a lone rescue mission for Cellaria but before that he has a private chat with Ryouta and Yuu. He tells them about how the wounded terrorist turned into water and evaporated, and that such creatures are called Sukyura. Shuhei whips out a gun at Yuu and her reflex is similar and as fast as Shuhei’s. He knows that she is no ordinary civilian but doesn’t know about Sukyura as well. He has her spill the beans about herself. We find out Yuu is actually a mercenary hired by a splinter group of Harallax to disrupt the main group’s activities because this splinter group doesn’t like the way this main group is going to bomb Earth with their nuclear missiles. Even within the terrorist organization, there’s a split. So technically, she’s on their side. Later, Shuhei and Nao have a private moment of theirs. He puts an engagement ring onto her finger, the reason why he came onboard Aries. After that, the duo had sex. Woah! Is it some sort of a parting gift for Shuhei?! Must be damn good one. Just kidding. When that is done, Shuhei prepares to leave in the little maintenance ship to rescue Cellaria. But in the end, Cellaria mentions something about how she has mind control powers too. Gasp!
 
With Shuhei gone, the rest decide to nominate Ryouta to be their leader in episode 7. Well, I guess better to let someone bear the burden of being the leader. Then the gang hears a startling discovery. It’s like Shuhei is trying to convey this message with his encounter with Cellaria. He makes known that Cellaria is the mastermind behind all this and that Shuhei himself is infected with this Sukyura thingy. Also, Cellaria says how her intention has shifted to money and no longer the release of their comrades. She’s planning to use the money do conduct further research and experiment on Sukyura. Then all hell break loose as all the terrorists and hostages becomes infected with Sukyura and are under Cellaria’s control, except for Gale, Karen and Aya who made their escape. Those soldiers are so zombie-like. It’s like Resident Evil in space. Because of the commotion, Nao panics for Shuhei’s safety and rushes to the door which is keeping both sides apart. The door blasts open severely injuring Nao. Yuu and Ryouta go to her aid but as they fire shots into the soldiers, their wounds immediately heal. The duo drag unconscious Nao away before the door comes shutting down. While recuperating in the room, Nao has some weird visions of a girl telling her it’ll be alright. When she comes to, Nao finds all her wounds has been completely healed. I have a theory. She did consummate with Shuhei who was infected with Sukyura, right? Oh dear! Sukyura is a sexually transmitted disease too! Haha!
 
At the same time, Gale and Aya are fending off some zombie soldiers and Gale is amazed that Aya isn’t afraid of what is happening. Well she did mention how she isn’t afraid as long as she’s with him. Not only that, she did say how she may like him! Wow. Enough to make a tough cookie like him blush and all soften up too. Karen is somehow separated from the duo and is in a maintenance ship trying to operate it. Though Nao is healed, Ryouta doesn’t want to alienate her even though she is suspected to have Sukyura because at this point they all need to stay together. With Morimoto’s help, the girls make some food but since they’re running low on supply, Morimoto along with Ryouta and Sayaka decide to head over to the food supply storeroom to get more stuff. As they open the door, they think that someone else is there but finds a furry dog instead. Morimoto recognizes it as Kuu, the mascot of Aries. Soon they find a little girl named Nanami hidden among the shelves. So if you’re wondering who that other girl is in the mid-intermission, opening and ending credits, she finally makes her appearance halfway through the series. They bring her back as she explains how she don’t remember much after waking up and finding herself in the storeroom. She’s your typical curious happy little girl. However the gang receive news from Aki about a maintenance ship returning but can’t tell whether it’s Shuhei because there is no reply.
 
When the maintenance ship docks in episode 8, we find out that it is Karen instead. Of course it’s normal for the gang to get defensive since she’s part of the terrorist. However when she mentions Shuhei’s name, Ryouta wants to know how she knows his brother. Karen tells them how while she is fending off several Sukyura soldiers, that’s when Shuhei arrived in the maintenance ship and she thought he is one of them. Because Shuhei maintains his rationale unlike those zombies, Karen thinks he’s not a Sukyura. She goes on saying how Gale and Aya too are unaffected, making Sayaka relieved to know her friend is still alive. Before Karen parted with Shuhei, he tells her to go back to where he came from as there are no one infected with Sukyura. With that, Ryouta allows Karen to stay with them. Because Kazuhiko and Aki continue to quarrel, Nanami wonders why they are always so. Anyway it took a little girl for those kids to reflect upon their petty argument. Also, Karen and Yuu had a little confrontation and they don’t really like each other. But when Karen mentions how one of her comrades, Shin Kurosaki, is working with Cellaria, Yuu is kinda surprised and heads off. Yuu has a short flashback and we see while she was young, she and Shin were in some war torn village. Shin was looking for his beloved sister and rushed off and that was the last Yuu saw of him. Since Nanami is spending quite some time with Nao, I don’t know why but she wants to call Nao her mom. Whatever. Later Aki and Kazuhiko notices a hangar door is open so Ryouta and Morimoto rushes there to find Sayaka trying to go save Aya by herself. Ryouta tells her not to but she throws a tantrum so much so Morimoto slaps her! Yuu then says how she will go over to rescue Aya in which Ryouta agrees. However he gives her a condition that she has to return alive even if it means only herself. But I think Yuu is more interested in finding Shin.
 
In episode 9, Shuhei is under Cellaria’s captivity and she wants to mate with him to produce a perfect Sukyura because she regards him as one. While Nanami wonders the meaning of happiness and Morimoto explains it like how all we should to a little girl (but Nanami is still confused because mommy isn’t with Shuhei), Yuu has arrived and storms through the hallway to reach Cellaria. Though she finds Shuhei tied down, she is also surprised to see Shin working for Cellaria. Shin says ever since Cellaria saved his sister, he has somewhat become her ‘slave’ doing everything she commands. Is this the kind of gratitude and loyalty we’re talking about? Yuu doesn’t believe all that crap and fires at Cellaria but her bullet wounds instantly heals. Yeah, she’s a Sukyura herself. Meanwhile Aki decides to go take a shower break after a short spat with Kazuhiko. It’s like deja vu for Ryouta because he comes out just when Aki heads in and she too gets a full view of his naked body. But Aki doesn’t freak out and cheekily says how he’s cute. I guess he’s got a lot on his mind because he remembers how Shuhei asked him if he had confessed to Sayaka.
 
Back at Cellaria, she’s thinking of making Yuu her Sukyura soldier. Shin can’t take it anymore and tackles Cellaria to give Yuu a chance to escape. Shin gets shot by Cellaria and soon infected by her Sukyura. I see she can do that by just touching one’s wounds. Shuhei then tackles Cellaria to buy time for the duo to escape. While taking a breather, Shin tells Yuu what Cellaria said was true. He did found her sister but she’s on the verge of life and death till Cellaria came and healed her. Shin knew his sister wasn’t really alive although she has been revived and feels more like a zombie. But he kept hoping for a miracle. Thus the reason he saved Yuu was that he wanted another chance. As Shuhei faints, Nanami senses something wrong (can she see through Shuhei’s eyes?!) and heads to the control room and it’s like she knows which button and keys to press to activate a camera onscreen to see what’s happening on the other side. The gang spots Yuu and Shin cornered. With that, the duo is ready to sacrifice themselves by blowing themselves up when the door behind them opens. Reinforcements in the form of Karen, Kazuhiko and Ryouta. Nanami comes up to Shin and places her hand on his injured shoulder and starts healing it. She can even do that?! There’s something mysterious about this loli.
 
Episode 10 sees Shin being treated as he explains about Cellaria’s experiment on Sukyura which goes back a long way. I don’t remember the technical details of it but from what I understand, Cellaria has the ability to control other imperfect Sukyuras which evaporated once they get wounded. Uh huh. Something about how Sukyura cells try to reconstruct a certain damaged part but an imperfect one will evaporate instead. In addition, Cellaria’s lab was burned down once it is found out that she’s being conducting such research. Shin thought she was dead but one day she turned up before him. Shin did say something about Nanami being an anti-Sukyura thingy because Shin isn’t infected with them now. Meanwhile Gale and Aya continue to defend themselves from more Sukyura soldiers. While Yuu stays by Shin’s side, the rest gets word from Aki and Kazuhiko that Aries may be crashing into Earth soon because the planet’s gravity is pulling them in and the rocket blasters which keeps them afloat isn’t working anymore. So they device a plan to escape through a detached space station, Botein, which was originally used when Aries was first constructed. The problem is getting there. Because it seems they’re abandoning plans to rescue Shuhei and Gale, Karen thinks he’s selfish but it’s a tough decision he has to make as said by Morimoto. Even if it’s a painful one, make sure it’s not one that he’ll regret. At least that’s what Shuhei told Ryouta. As Nanami spends more time with Nao, Karen tells Kazuhiko how Gale is like a father to her since she herself doesn’t know who her real parents are. While Sayaka is trying to operate a vehicle, she sheds a tear when she looks at the photo of herself and Aya. Ryouta comes to comfort her and soon they both kiss. However Cellaria decides to spice things up and show the negotiators of her impatience. Aries jolts once more and to everyone’s horror, Aki says how the rocket blasters have been activated to accelerate towards Earth. They’re going to crash sooner and faster! That crazy woman! Nanami rushes to confront Shin and wants him to tell her something.
 
I’m not sure about this episode because it is an unaired episode some call it episode 10.5. It’s a flashback-cum-recap episode through the narrations of Cellaria and Nanami. Though I would’ve passed it, it’s a good thing I didn’t. Why? As the first half is sarcastically and sadistically narrated by Cellaria, we find out that she was the one who trapped Aya in the locker and planted her Sukyura cells into Shuhei when he got injured when they first took on the terrorist back in episode 3. A perfect way to spread her disease on the person whom she wanted so badly for her experiment. The second half is of course by innocent-sounding Nanami and her narration balances out Cellaria’s dark one with hope and faith.
 
Episode 11 starts off with Sayaka’s flashback on how her dad left her. While sitting alone on a swing, Sayaka was approached by Aya and it was then their beautiful friendship began. Back in reality, everyone makes preparations to head to Botein. Nanami is nowhere in sight as she decides to crawl through a tiny air vent herself to where Cellaria is. She remembers the time whereby she confronted Shin who tells her that she may the one who can defeat Cellaria because she has both human and Sukyura cells. Nao and Ryouta searches for Nanami but ends up finding Kuu barking at the air vent spot. They realized that Nanami had went through went Aries starts to jolt once more while Kuu finally manages to get itself into the air vent to follow Nanami’s trail. They have to scramble to Botein now. As Kazuhiko and Karen are the first batch to arrive at Botein via a maintenance vehicle (so that Kazuhiko can hack and take over the main controls from there after all of them have left their main base), Shuhei is having visions of Nanami who calls him father and says she’ll be there soon (it then occurred to me that Nanami may be the child of Shuhei and Nao after that consummation. How did she grow up so fast? Don’t know but she does address them as her parents, right?
 
At the same time, Gale and Aya have arrived at a dock with a maintenance ship as Aya gets onboard. After some instructions to set the ship on an auto pilot course, Aya realized that Gale isn’t coming with him. OMG! Is that guy going to sacrifice himself?! Aya is horrified as she could only watch helplessly as Gale stays back to keep those zombies at bay. Gale gets injured badly (real bloody, I tell you) in the hale of bullets and finally he decides to take them all with him as he detonates himself with the zombies. NOOO!!! Even terrorists have their pride. Heartbreak for Aya. Also, since more zombies are creeping into the main base, Yuu tells Ryouta that there won’t be time to ferry them over. Is she and Shin going to sacrifice themselves too? Maybe not. They’re going to take the long way to Botein. Just that they’re going to kill some zombies on their way there. So the remaining survivors get onboard the maintenance ship and head for Botein. Sayaka then hears a radio communication from Aya seeking help and is glad to hear her voice. With Morimoto’s help, they are able to bring Aya’s maintenance ship safely to Botein. Sayaka and Aya hugged in their happy reunion. Karen then asks about Gale but since Aya isn’t able to answer and tears start to build in her eye, Karen fears the worst as she leaves in tears.
 
Karen is walking alone dejectedly when she is met with Sukyura zombies in episode 12. She takes out her frustration on them like a mad girl who has just lost something precious. As the rest arrive, a zombie then shoots Ryouta in the leg and is going to finish off Sayaka and Aya when Morimoto takes the shot. As the girls go get medical supply, Morimoto tells Ryouta how he left his daughter for a job. To cut things short, Morimoto is Sayaka’s dad. He was quite surprised to see her onboard Aries and had intended to tell her but was unable due to these events. He gives Ryouta a pendant and wants him to give it to Sayaka and continue protecting her smile. It’s so sad to see him pass away. Sayaka who has overhead their conversation is in despair as she realized he is her father but is too late to save him. Meanwhile Nanami manages to reach Cellaria and confronts her. Cellaria is happy to see another survivor and decides to plant some Sukyura cells on her. Shuhei is too weak to do anything. Nanami has a flashback of what Shin told her about destroying Cellaria but I don’t remember much. Cellaria’s going to implant her cells when she’s distracted by Kuu who comes running in. Nanami then places her palm over Cellaria’s chest and causes the latter pain as some of her body parts start to glow. I don’t know how but Cellaria notes how she has been defeated by a little girl before disintegrating. That’s it?! Beaten so easily?!
 
As Yuu and Shin have already arrived in Botein, they are to detach from Aries soon but since Nao is still worried about Shuhei and Nanami, she apologizes to Ryouta as she rushes out of Botein and into Aries. Looks like she can’t leave them alone. Botein detaches itself safely as Nao happily reunites with Shuhei and Nanami. The rest could only watch as Aries breaks apart as it enters orbit and its parts scattered below. A year later, Yuu and Shin chat with each other and we find out that Shuhei and co are still pretty much alive because Shin did told Nanami about an escape shuttle from the Harallax. Not only that, the trio managed to disarm the nuclear missiles before escaping safely. Shin didn’t want to tell Ryouta and the rest since he didn’t know whether their escape was successful or not and would prefer to keep these Sukyuras a secret. We also see that Ryouta and Sayaka after attending a ceremony in which Ryouta has been hailed as a hero who stopped the nuclear attack. Aya is lost at the ground station as usual carrying a big bouquet of flowers while Kazuhiko and Aki meet Karen (who is dressing a lot like a pretty lady) at that station. Things indicate that Karen may have a crush on Kazuhiko so Aki leaves her brother in her care. Finally as Sayaka and Ryouta visits Morimoto’s grave, a little boy hands them a letter. They open a letter and to their relief, finds a photo of Shuhei, Nao and Nanami who says that they are doing fine.
 
In the end, I find this series quite engaging. Though the twist of the storyline from a terrorist hijack to a horror survival theme is fascinating. However even with all the blood and gore (in the initial episodes), I find that the action lacks impact. In the sense that when they fire their guns, you don’t feel the ‘weight’ of it. Furthermore, when the characters get shot and wounded, it’s like as though they just got a scratch and do not react painfully like those who get bullets pierced through their skin. Yeah, they can still move about though less efficiently. In addition, although the drawing is your conventional Japanese bishoujo art, sometimes I feel certain episodes and scenes have a drop in quality as I noticed the character’s facial details not properly drawn or their body parts a little not proportionately equal.
 
I don’t mean to sound like a sadist, but seeing that this turned out to be a horror survival flick, I was hoping to see more main characters to be killed off. But I guess it’s better to have a good happy ending. There are potential chemistry between several characters but it didn’t amount to anything much. Like Kazuhiko and Karen’s. As for Ryouta and Sayaka, perhaps it’s right for them to be concentrating on getting off Aries. Don’t want to see a tragic love romance, don’t we? Similarly, Nao gets to be reunited with the Shuhei she loves. It’s really mind boggling to see how the duo can conceive a child just like that. Effects of Sukyura? But I still find Nanami the most annoying because of her high pitch squealing. And it still bugs me that Cellaria didn’t put up much of a fight in the end. Perhaps I was hoping for her to turn into some giant monster like you see in those video games. Yeah, the final boss stage monster.
 
The opening theme, Screaming, by Miyuki Hashimoto is a rock piece and is quite fitting for this series as it gets viewers in the mood for drama and action. She also does the ending theme, Dust trail, which is more of a slow rock. On a trivial note, the next episode preview is narrated by Cellaria and the initial episodes, her narration sounded like philosophies of life. Then when her true nature is revealed, her narration turned into a dark, mocking one, coupled in with her trademark sinister evil woman laughter. Each of the episode’s title are single words which reflects what will happen in that episode like episode 3’s "Outbreak" and episode 6’s "Farewell".
 
Though I won’t be playing the game anytime soon (or ever), but at least if there are future animes of such genre, perhaps I won’t write it off quickly and give it a chance. Space, the final frontier. So much of the unknown to explore and discover. I wonder if the high-tech advance technology and development is all worth it seeing that there are futuristic threats to handle like space terrorists and super viruses. Ah well, the best is back to basics. And to quote from a movie line, "In space nobody can hear you scream".
 

Soul Link