# The Hero We Need (Gundam Seed 35) ![](/possible.jpg) This is La Flaga's episode - and Ramius' as well. Weeks of expectation and buildup finally resolve themselves into a full fleet engagement, which is (rightly) where the "adults" of the show shine. There's a running theme of stepping up and taking responsibility where no-one else can; La Flaga's "I didn't choose to become a hero" protests a little too much, but matches up with his actions. More subtly, Ramius first leads the Archangel forward to cover a gap in the line, and then takes clear personal responsibility for ordering the retreat at the peak of the episode. What's particularly interesting here is that Milly's fatalistic suggestion is born of the same impulse: in directly contradicting her, Ramius makes the case for a more flexible and personal sense of duty and also, indirectly, for the wisdom of experience. Note the reversed echo of episode 2, where Ramius told these naïve kids to shut up and follow orders; age alone didn't grant her wisdom, but it seems to have made her more able to learn and mature through experiences that the younger characters have experienced simply as trauma. La Flaga's conversation in the hanger gives a blunter rendition of the same dynamic. Sadly, the other side drops the ball. Where Ramius, La Flaga and even Badriguel are stepping up and taking responsibility, Le Creuset is content to sit smugly in place, hinting that he knows all that will happen but disdaining to lift a finger to stop it. It really undermines the rivalry we're supposed to see between him and La Flaga - apart from anything else, what has Le Creuset ever done to earn the loyalty of his compatriots? Even his capture of Flay - the first time we've really seen him lead from the front - seems to contribute very little from a military point of view. In fairness he has to make do without much of his squad - but in practice that only compounds the problem. With Athrun elsewhere for plot reasons that were surely avoidable, Deakka captured, and Nikolai dead, only the one-note Yzak is around on the ZAFT side. With the Federation forces lack Kira, Cagalli or Flay, this makes the fights in the early part of the episode feel strangely bloodless - plenty of well-choreographed animation and explosions, but too little involvment from anyone we care about at the character level. La Flaga mostly rescues this as soon as he steps in, but this is one case where I wish they'd carried through the mirroring and had Le Creuset fight him again. ![](/impossible.jpg) Another broken symmetry rounds out the episode. Athrun's reaction here is striking in its childish, almost animal immediacy - its impact blunted only by how slight the relationship we've seen between him and Lacus actually is. Again this is a case where committing more completely to the parallels would enhance the show: Kira's conversations with Lacus held a trust and tenderness that would make a betrayal between them seem sincerely painful. Athrun's... didn't. In contrast, Kira shows a maturity beyond his years - and far beyond anything we've seen from him until now, as if the spoiled prince had become the Buddha overnight. The way La Flaga and Ramius respond to Kira's broadcasted warning, it's clear that both viewed this as the right thing - and yet neither dared. Kira has a better sense of his duty than either of them - we're already refuting or at least undermining Ramius' overruling of Milly - perhaps because he no longer owes that duty to any military or side. He spares a shocked Yzak, and the point is pressed home even more bluntly when he saves a no-name soldier. ![](/wanted.jpg) And then, suddenly, the spell is broken. The man dies and Kira punches the ground in frustration, still human after all. We're reminded that many have died, and left to wonder whether those we've seen and care about (Badriguel? Deakka?) are among them. Lacus is under investigation, the Archangel is seriously damaged. As glad a moment as Kira's return is (and while the show milks it a little too hard, the fundamental storytelling principle is sound enough to lift even my heart), the situation is still distinctly dire. [Home](/) <div id="disqus_thread"></div> comments powered by Disqus