Part 70: At The End of a LifeBy the way, this is the first update using a new home-built LP-composing text editor/screenshot capper I spent all of Saturday making to streamline my workflow. It's been in development throughout the recording and it's still pretty rough, but it seems to be working out so far!
Adiene, the watery General, wants to avenge Thymilf, who you may remember Kamina gave his life to slay, as well as claim his battleship for our own. So does Cytomandra, the sky-flying one, but Adiene protests that she was a "close friend" of the late Thymilf. You can hurr, but Lordgenome is merely impressed that his creations seem to have surpassed their designs, and gives Adiene permission to hunt down the Great Gurren Gang - and assassinate his daughter, Nia. Quite forcefully; even the artificial Adiene balks, but Lordgenome is firm. He has no more attachment to Nia; she's no longer of his house.
"Very well. I, Adiene the Current, will visit the majesty and terror of the Spiral King on the humans!"
Cytomandra seems about to say something, but instead quickly affirms that the will of his Creator is absolute. He and Guame leave, and the Spiral King meditates on humanity, cursed to die, and all the faster the brighter they burn.
Benkei Kuruma's come to welcome the Getter Team, and his own training as a Getter backup pilot is going great; he figures he could step in for any of them at any time. The main team is proud of him, but Musashi warns him with a laugh that he can have the Getter-3 chair over his dead body.
Also present are Mishima and Saotome's children, Michiru and Genki, who's surprisingly shy. Kids will be kids, though, and the Getter Team is eager to test-drive the upgraded Getter, the better to take it up against the Invaders and Imperium.
Old man Saotome snaps that that can only happen if they can handle the new Getter's power, and in a surprising moment of softness, gently sends Genki to his room for the test. With his son out of earshot, he immediately rips into the Getter Team in no uncertain terms, declaring that they're falling behind and far too weak to even slow the Imperium. Ryoma returns that that's exactly what he thought the new Getter was for!
Yes, the new Getter. Saotome explains that it's just the first of the new generation of Getters - a doorway of sorts to a new generation of Getters. Getter Robo is a machine that runs on the unlimited power and the unlimited evolutionary potential of the Getter Rays, and what he wants to test today is the Getter Team's ability to handle it!
Ryoma and Hayato pick their new Get Machines, the Dragon and the Liger, immediately, but despite Musashi's earlier gusto, he's too hungry to do a test combination. Benkei is, just as he said, ready to step in at any time, but according to Saotome, he's too erratic a pilot to be worth anything as a source of test data. The third jet, the Poseidon, will be tested with Michiru as the pilot. She can surely handle a test, though she assures them that she'd have to bow out to Benkei if it came to a real battle.
Ryoma is ready to meet and tame the new Getter Robo, but Saotome is sure it'll be a closer game than the thinks...
Back at the Great Gurren, stationed at Izu, Simon and pals are minding their own business in the mess hall when Rossiu suddenly yells something unintelligible and runs out. On a surely unrelated note, Nia is in the kitchen trying to learn to cook from master chef Old Coco. Never mind that no one can remember when the greybeard actually got onto the ship, his cooking is unparalleled, and now that Nia is no longer the beastman princess, she wants to do something for the Great Gurren Gang.
Speaking of Nia's status, the beastmen know exactly where Nia is and what she's doing, but her dad hasn't sent anyone to come and "rescue" here. What's up with that? Nia has a guess. She seems to have angered him with a question: "Why was I born?" He seemed to be giving her the cold shoulder after that. If that's the way he's going to be, though, she has no intention of returning to the beastman capitol. "The Great Gurren's kitchen is my new home," she declares. Well, the gang has no problem with that, and they're ready to give her a taste test!
It's peaceful enough here on the Great Gurren to make a guy forget all about the wars going on, but they're still going on; the Crushers discuss the Zentran uprising in Africa (as well as Ranka's quelling of it and the scattering of the footage across the 'net), but we've seen it all. The only thing is, Nia starts humming Ranka's Aimo, but doesn't seem to have learned it from the movie or anything. Before she can explain, her food's done...
Rossiu gets back just a moment too late to warn everyone before they help themselves to huge steaming spoonfuls...
But despite the bizarre flavor, the food does seem to have an energizing kick to it.
Simon can't get enough of the stuff and helps himself to everyone else's, an arrangement that suits everyone involved. Does it taste this good because Nia made it just for Simon? Crowe's got a more prosaic theory, and it involves Simon's sense of taste.
Yoko isn't happy about this, but can't seem to put her finger on why...
and Gain and Crowe have both noticed - as Gain puts it, "the looks Yoko shoots at Nia every so often are from the eyes of a sniper." Yoko may be over Kamina, more or less, but that doesn't mean she's over Nia waltzing in like she owns the joint.
Anyway, it's time for our fight hook - the Invaders are swarming Tokyo!
Chapter 36: At The End of a Life
Sure is Invaders!
It's been a while since we've fought Invaders, and without Getter, too, but GOONZ is up to the challenge as always! Except for Rossiu, who isn't feeling great. Simon assumes it's because he hasn't had enough to eat, since Simon ate his plate, so he gets his pigmole Boota to feed Rossiu his butt. No, really. This is a thing that happened in Gurren-Lagann. The raw ass steak does energize Rossiu, though, and we're on the charge!
The skill point: all Invaders down within two turns.
Of course, there aren't that many, and we've got some of Earth's mightiest super robots.
Also, Simon's and Rossiu's meals have set both their Wills to maximum, so...
Gurren-Lagann is even more deadly than usual.
Soon, Getter Robo arrives. GOONZ was hoping they'd come back with the new Getter model. There's a long story about why they didn't, and not a happy one by the looks on the team's faces, but it's too long to tell in the midst of a battle with the Invaders.
By the time turn 2 rolls around, nine of the twenty Invaders are down and the rest are all wounded - as expected, this is far from the hard part of the battle.
It doesn't take long to finish them off, but the Invaders could appear again at any time and any place. It still bothers Leeron that despite that, they have never attacked beastmen, but suddenly, the Great Gurren detects a large Ganmen approaching the zone!
Nia recognizes the huge fish-shaped thing as the Dai-Gan-Kai (tlnote: like the Dai-Gan-Zan loosely translates to "Great Mountain," the Dai-Gan-Kay means "Great Ocean," so you can see the pattern). Adiene congratulates us on evading destruction at the fangs of the "Hungry Destroyers."
Nia asks Dayakka to take her up to Adiene's ship. She thinks she can talk Adiene down from the battle. Yoko adds, scowling, that he might as well - at least then they'll get an idea of what Nia's up to.
She may have been a bitch about it, but Crowe and Gain have to admit there's a point in there. Helpless, Dayakka turns to Simon for a judgment call, but Simon figures Nia knows what she's doing. Yoko, however, warns her that she's got her scope trained on Nia in case she tries anything. Nia just smiles in response.
Nia goes out to the Kai to ask Adiene point-blank why her dad has his soldiers hunting down humans. Adiene gives the obvious answer: because the Spiral King has ordered them to exterminate humanity. And Adiene has never considered that order? Adiene wants to know what there is to consider. Humans are the lowest of all life-forms, and their suffering in death means nothing.
That pisses Kitan off, but Gainer holds him back. Nia's trying to get something done here. Nia continues, asking to speak to her father directly, but to Adiene's alarming glee, she doesn't have to let that happen. "The Spiral King's disowned you! He's abandoned you! I don't know what you did, but he's told us to wipe you off the face of the planet with the rest of the swine!"
That would explain why no one's come from Nia, as well as what she was doing in the box. Nia refuses to believe Adiene, but it doesn't matter to the beastwoman; Nia's going to die anyway! Nia asks Adiene if she hates her so much. But despite Adiene's seeming bloodlust, she doesn't hate Nia at all. It's simply the Spiral King's orders.
So Nia asks one of her pointy questions: "Would you die if my father ordered you to?"
Adiene pauses, and Nia presses the point, insisting that the humans are just trying to live out their lives and haven't done anything to deserve extermination. Adiene roars that they murdered Thymilf, and Nia counters that they themselves had lost Bro. Losing a loved one hurts, and it hurts no matter who you are, human or beastmen; why are we trying to make it happen to each other?
Far from being moved, Adiene gets fed up and grabs Nia, intending to execute her right here and now. GOONZ moves to save her, but it's too late - Adiene has her hostage. She thoughtfully starts going over her options - she could have us work for her, or she could make us fight for her amusement...
Meanwhile, Crowe's wondering if Gain can shoot Adiene's Nia-holding arm. Gain took a shot fighting the Beastmen, though, and he can't aim that precisely right now. That just leaves Yoko.
(We don't have to do this for her...)
(Do you really think that?)
(If you really, truly, for real believe that, put her out of her misery right now.)
(That's low, you jerk...)
(Yeah, that's me. You can hate me if it'd make you feel better.)
If there's no other way...
Whoa! Don't jump the gun, Yoko!
Don't do it, Yoko!
Pull the trigger, Yoko.
I-impossible! How did she strike my arm at that distance?!
Inexplicably, Old Coco is there to catch her, and Nia makes it safely back to the Great Gurren. Yoko asks why she told her to shoot, and Nia smiles and says she believed Yoko could hit Adiene's arm - and that she would.
Gain congratulates Yoko on a damn good shot. And what about his arm?
You know, I was so inspired by that performance that my injury seems to have healed right up.
Heh. Looks like God himself was so impressed by Yoko's shot that he visited a miracle upon us.
Oh, please. You're the one who saved Nia and all of us with a single bullet.
See, Gain is the best character in shows he's not even from.
In other news, Adiene is so mad her stomach's churning. That's okay; we're back in a position to show her just what low swinie we are!
In fact, we're free to take on the beastmen as leisurely as we like now that the SR Point is done with, but the destruction of the Dai-Gan-Kai is the only thing actually required.
Nia! This is for having the presumption to scold me!
That was not a scolding! I only said what I believe! And now I believe in GOONZ!
What a girl...
You wretch! I will kill you and return victorious to the Spiral King's side!
We won't let you! You won't get Nia or the Great Gurren! All hands, attack!
The Kai is basically a gigantic shark and its main attack is straight-up biting its opponents. Anyway, check out the Great Gurren now that Nia's on the bridge.
As soon as Adiene strikes, new bogeys appear, attacking both Ganmen and GOONZ alike...
And it appears to be copies of Getters Dragon, Liger, and Poseidon! They're not letting up their attack, and Professor Saotome won't respond to Shirota's calls.
Stop right there, Hayato! Michiru's death was an accident and you know it!
Yeah. And it was our fault.
Ryoma, it was an accident!
Professor Saotome... sent them to kill Ryoma and me...
Keep it together, Hayato! I'm not gonna die here!
We have to fight! We can't afford to die, not yet!
Whatever's going on, we now have to take down Dragon, Liger, and Poseidon as well as the Adiene.
And they're going right now!
Darn it! I thought we'd never have to fight a Getter Robo again!
But this time, the Getter Team's not in it, so I don't have to pull punches!
This is not Liger's impressive attack, is all; you'll get to see how doofy it looks in due time.
Finally, Dragon goes for the mirror match with Getter-1 - again outranging it. Asshole.
The new Getter Robo... the only part that isn't complete is... the combination sequence.
Don't think about it, Hayato! Focus on the battle!
They've got more raw power than our Getter... but!
The real power of Getter is in the sync of its three pilots! We're not gonna let an AI Getter beat us!
That was what passes for Dragon's impressive attack, though. Loser.
Watch out, Toshiya! They're not just any unmanned robot!
Those aren't your average AI patterns. That's some smart design!
If I didn't know better, I'd say those robots were designed to be run by AIs from the outset!
Who cares! No matter how well they're programmed, no machine's gonna beat a human!
This is bad! They're better than our Getter across the board!
So what? We're not gonna let a malfunctioning bucket of bolts beat us!
That's right! Sorry, Ryoma, but we're scrapping that Getter!
It's just a robot. It's not piloted by a human.
It may be more powerful than us, but it won't beat Dai-Guard as long as it's got the three of us working together!
I think we all wish that was all it took to win!
I'll never overpower it! I'll have to be quick!
Dammit... not that I'm not glad to score data on a machine that's not even out of testing, but a Getter?
Sorry, Getter Team, but I'm at least getting some cash outta these things!
Okay, one down.
And while I'm here, I can get a shot in at Adiene.
You trashy little Ganmen! I'll crush you to scrap for what you did to me!
You know, I only shot you in the arm because I was trying to save Nia.
But this time I'm going to shoot you right in your smug stupid face!
Oh my god, I forgot there are dolphin beastmen.
Anyway, that's another turn done.
It's more powerful than Musashi's Getter...
But a berserk machine is just like a monster with no soul, and I'll take either on!
Just a reminder that Mazinger owns.
It's a super robot duel, and I'm not gonna be the loser!
Let's do this, Getter Robo! You don't even have Hayato or anybody in you, so I'm not scared of you!
Oh, Watta. And Liger only looks a little less doofy in his Armageddon incarnation than he did in the first Z!
If you're an AI, you can't make precise movements... so I can outmaneuver you!
Malfunctioning machines are just annoying! Even if they're a fancy new Getter Robo, I'll crush them!
Simon! That's the new Getter Robo model!
Don't flinch, Rossiu! No matter what your enemy is, you lose from the start if you hesitate!
Just a reminder that Gurren-Lagann owns.
And Rossiu mans up and learns Drive! (Or Spirit. I never seem to remember which.)
What's going on? Are these Getters really attacking us because they're malfunctioning?
And why won't Professor Saotome answer? This doesn't feel right... is my clairvoyance trying to warn us of something?
It may be bigger and stronger than us, but no machine has the guts to match us!
But guts only goes so far!
And making it go further than it should is what makes a man! Going beyond the impossible with our spirits!
Jiron learns Guard, in case you thought the Walker Gallia wasn't hard enough to kill.
Since that's everyone with actual lines against the G Getters, I'm going to skip directly to Liger's timely, doofy demise.
So we can get back to the equally timely demise of the Dai-Gan-Kai, of course.
I'm not even going to bother with the beastmen, partly because this path is getting left behind anyway.
There you are, Gurren-Lagann! I know you're behind all of this!
I'd do it all again! We're not just swine! We're living, breathing people!
And we won't let you kill us for no reason, even if it's your orders!
Ending this Gurren-Lagann style.
Adiene drops her Adrenaline Ampule. Not that Simon needs it. She yells that she'll get us for Thymilf next time and retreats with all of her beastmen. Nia calls after her to tell her dad she's never coming back.
At last, Saotome calls the Getter Team to tell them he's not mad at them for anything so petty as Michiru's death... he's just run out of patience for their incompetence! The Getter Team can't decide whether to object first to that or calling Michiru's death petty, but his daughter's life is petty to him compared to the fate of the world itself! Saotome declares that he no longer intends to depend on the Getter Team, or any of GOONZ for that matter. He's taking the "destruction" of this rotten world into his own hands! "GOONZ! And all humanity! Await Armageddon, the last day of the world!"
That's... not good, right?
The Getter Team explains: they were testing the new Getter's sequence as planned, with Michiru in the Poseidon. They managed to form Getter Dragon correctly, so the next step was Liger. Poseidon docks behind Liger, and then Dragon comes in from behind... but that time, one of them slipped, and the Poseidon was crushed between the Liger and Dragon. It's not a pretty way to die, and Hayato and Ryoma both blame themselves, no matter how much Musashi insists it was one big accident. The sequence never fails when it's him with Ryoma and Hayato.
"Then are you saying it was Michiru's own fault she died?" explodes Hayato.
"...it was my fault," says Musashi. "I should have been in the Poseidon."
Ryoma shuts them both up. Beating themselves up isn't going to bring Michiru back, and all three of them are going to have to live with that forever.
Saotome is still not responding to GOONZ' calls. It seems like he really is trying to overthrow the whole world with the Getters...
But just then, news comes in from the other Japan that Euphemia has just ordered the extermination of the Japanese, kicking off intense violence between the rebels and Britannian forces; GOONZ can't believe she'd do something so low as to lure all her own supporters into one place to kill them. Elgan Roddick is calling GOONZ back together to address the growing threat of the Imperium in the face of the collapsing international situation. Shirota will get the Corps keeping an eye on Saotome - they'll let us know if he starts doing anything. Ryoma doesn't think he will; Saotome created the Getter to save the world in his own way, and he doesn't think the old man will try to rock the boat now of all times. Whatever he just did, it must have been one mad moment of grief in the wake of his daughter's death. At least, that's what he hopes...
Saotome is, indeed, grieving over Michiru - he wanted to change the world for her, his child, for her future.
All he has left is Genki, and he swears over and over again that he won't ever let his other child die. Benkei can see the child is in shock and takes him away to recover, but in his mad state, Saotome feels he's lost everything...
and at this moment, Cohen and Stinger call to say hello. They know the Getter for the next era is being complete, just as Saotome himself is becoming "a creature like us." The three of them will work together on the ultimate Getter.
Desperate and confused, Saotome agrees - crying that the ultimate Getter will be his legacy to his children!
But right now, I'm just glad we saved Area 11 for last, because at last, we get to go back and see just what happened in Area 11 that led to the massacre of the Elevens.