Monday, 22 March 2010

Sora no Woto - Episode 12 (Completed)

With the appearance of Aisha, the injured Roman soldier, last episode, things were only going to go downhill for the girls of the 1121st Platoon as they look to shelter their supposed prisoner of war from harm, and as this finale to Sora no Woto begins things are looking really rather dire for them.

Indeed, within the first minute we have two wide-eyed "oh shit" moments, not least Felicia pulling a gun on the Colonel and taking him hostage in order to protect her charges, in the short-term at least. However, even at gunpoint the Colonel can still attack Noel as we learn the exact truth behind her past; a revelation in front of her friends which all but destroys her at that point in time, and a shock only allayed by Aisha's words of forgiveness.

It is however Kanata who sets the wheels for what is to come in motion, swearing that she's heard a trumpet signalling a cease fire, which she then tries to relay on with understandably little joy from the war-hungry Colonel. This forces drastic action once again from the girls, which needless to say involves the mechanised tank Noel has been working on throughout the series as well as last-gasp intervention courtesy of the return of Rio.

While that ending might well have been rather predictable when all is said and done, that shouldn't detract from the fact that this was actually a pretty powerful episode - A fascinating set of circumstances which took the girls from bravery to foolishness to fear while reinforcing the bonds between them in a way that felt altogether natural, and delivered in a way that was at times quite moving. Indeed, the emotional impact of this episode can probably be traced back to the way Sora no Woto has built up its characters throughout, with those moments that perhaps felt frivolous at the time have combined to create characters that you end up caring about - An important cornerstone of a series such as this, and one that should probably be remembered by others who have tried to weave similar tales to this show and failed. Sora no Woto may not be the most memorable series ever, but it's provided some stunning episodes set against a backdrop that was frequently fun - An odd but heady mixture which worked really well for it in the end.


Milanor said...

Watching the "giant spider" in action was marvelous. This episode was great.

I still wanna know what the real deal is with that fossil! But I guess part of the magic is never knowing for sure about some of the ancient secrets of this world they've set up here.

Since all of this crazy warfare technology is so ancient, though, I wonder if bioweapons are what screwed humans over the first time... *speculates*

Wolfy said...

that fossil thing is the "angel" that the townsfolk burned (note, it doesn't have a head either if you look at the fossil closely). That was so COOL though, though the Amazing GRace thing and Rio coming back was sorta obvious (still a good ending!) sigh, i'll miss Sora no Woto...

Anonymous said...

At least the series ended in style. I would be lying if I didn't say I was disappointed at times, but I have to give them props for trying to mix in a serious story.

ahchiew said...

I enjoyed the series very much. Also, thank you very much for the review. (Thumbs Up.)

Peter S said...

The good points of this series far outweighed the bad points.

Though I thought the show had built a very interesting world, I don't think the legends that the Romans and Helvetians played out especially well. And I hate the idea that these people are simply replaying a legend; not only is it a cliche but it removes their free will. That was my only real complaint about this episode. Even Rio's appearance to save the day didn't bug me.

Robert said...

I felt that the climax was sensibly handled. Anyone expecting a bloody battle really was watching a different show for the last three months - and it avoided mawkishness by having Kanata's song not cause everyone to suddenly down tools, but cause a delay long enough for Rio to arrive.

I do think that Rio returning to 1121 Pn was a bit twee, but while the ending credits were schmaltzed up it didn't detract from a neat final episode which not only resolved everything, but did so characterfully and satisfyingly.

The "Strength of Anime" program is a great concept, and Sound of the Skies has been a strong opening entry - I earnestly pray that it's a financial success, both deservedly on its own merits and to encourage the programme to continue.

sumire001 said...

What made the last few episodes a bit disappointing for me were the amount of cliches, both in plot and character development. I felt the producers failed to bring the development to another level, making it really not much more than a string of unexpected events, even though there was indication of effort to do so. Also, maybe there could have been more explanation to things such as the fossil, as mentioned, and maybe a stronger connection with the maiden story or the old world.

But like everyone, I feel that Sora no woto's strengths outweigh its shortcomings. Overall, it was a beautiful and unique and very memorable show. Thanks for your reviews!