The Azur Lane Alliance and Red Axis face serious actions from the Sirens and Kaga as they launch the dreaded Orochi ship.
Episode 10 – “ECHOES – Crimson Memories, Bleached”
The underlying issue of Azur Lane is the mystery of the Mental Cubes which break down huge battleships which then become the armor and weapons for the techno-magical girls. Where did they come from? How do they work? Even the ship girls don’t know. The appearance of the Black Mental Cube started answering these questions by adding dark drama to its own creation and discovery. Did the original Mental Cubes come from the Sirens themselves? This adds even more mystery and some nervous tension to how the ship girls came to be born to fight these enemies from the deep ocean.
I’m glad we spent some time talking with the invaders of Azur Lane. The writers did a very good job of showing how alien they’re thinking is and how their thoughts and concepts don’t exactly match our language. What’s more disturbing about them, which makes them great characters, is how much knowledge they have of our history and our philosophers. Did you ever expect to get a reference to Plutarch’s Lives in a show about sexy ship waifus? I did not. How Observer explained what the Black Mental Cube can do by bringing in the paradox of The Ship of Theseus told us how she seduced Akagi with the hope of reuniting with her dead sister. If a copy of a ship is exact, as the paradox of Theseus’ Ship, is it not the same ship? It looked like Akagi didn’t believe it at first, but the temptation was too strong, and the Sirens took advantage of how “human” the ship girls really are.
Contrast this side of Azur Lane with Enterprise’s doubt of her own humanity. Belfast’s Elegant Enterprise Project has the aim of Enterprise accepting her humanity by grasping the core of why she fights, even though she is afraid of the ocean. We’re getting glimpses of her fear’s origins whenever the Sirens talk about the Black Mental Cube collecting data. Enterprise’s dreams and flashbacks come from that Black Cube. The idea that the Cube can make copies of boats and how Enterprise talks with an alternate version of herself, and a version of Amagi too, may answer the question that Observer put to Akagi about a copy being the real thing if you can’t tell the difference. The difference is that someone “knows” it is a copy, which spoils the whole paradox.
On a disappointing note, I have to report that the last two episodes will not be broadcast until the end of March 2020. Paraphrasing, the producers need more time to bring the animation quality up for episodes 11 and 12. They will rebroadcast the whole show starting in January, and those missing episodes will air on March 13 and 20, respectively, which is the equivalent week 11 and 12 for the winter season. I am curious if the reworked animation for the disc sets will happen before the old episodes are aired again so that the rebroadcast airs what the disc sets will have. At any rate, we’ll see the conclusion of Azur Lane in March.
Enterprise keeps meeting Alterprise in her dreams. She says endless war is her “crimson lane.” The Elegant Enterprise Project is still hitting snags.
Azur Lane is still stumped by the Black Mental Cube. Ark Royal has a nice destroyer waifu art book. They still don’t know what motivated Akagi.
The Ayanami Friendship Project is a complete success! Everyone in the sauna! Ayanami likes heat. Too hot for Laffey. The girls show us the important stakes — hot boat girls in towels. Uh, I mean saving everyone in the Azur Lane Alliance and the Sakura Empire by the power of friendship. Yeah, it’s definitely that latter one.
Meanwhile, at the Sakura Empire, Nagato does the rational thing. Kaga now has her path to self-destruction where all sides will have to stop her while the Sirens cheer her on and win no matter what happens.
Wow. Ise and Hyuuga are big lushes. Souryuu and Hiryuu worry about showing weakness in front of the Iron Blood. Such a strong alliance they have in the Red Axis. There’s still time for name check fan service in the Sakura Empire.
Now Kaga is getting tempted by visions from the Black Mental Cube. Flashback to Observer telling Kaga and Akagi that the Cube can make a copy of the dead, because it collects their data. Akagi appeared to resist that idea but look what happened since then. The Cube “evolves” too. That doesn’t sound good. Observer has an alien sense of personal space. Observer’s face mashing is a great way of showing how different the Sirens are to people and ship girls. Oh, philosophy? The Ship of Theseus is from Plutarch’s Lives, which describes this very paradox of which is the real ship if the copy is exact.
Kaga has made her decision to finish Akagi’s plan mainly out of despair for her own situation. There’s some room left in there for redemption if she can get Akagi to prefer her to a memory of the dead.
Enterprise is having trouble too. This Black Mental Cube is making ship girls crazy. Alterprise says people are bad and boats were made only to conquer the sea. Orochi wants to conquer everything.
Belfast has had enough of this mopey Enterprise. Eat. Breakfast. Now. All the other Azur Lane ships are shocked. Javelin finally put her hoodie up. Oops. There’s another sleepyhead out there, but she wants more than breakfast. Lover’s quarrel? Exactly!
Belfast’s Elegant Enterprise Project is all about making Enterprise admit she fights because she wants to help people, which is not the motivation of a mindless warbot. And we’ll have the resolution to Belfast’s project during the big fight over the last two episodes.
Oh. That Siren stole back the Black Mental Cube. I guess it got enough data from the Azur Lane Alliance and Orochi needs to get moving on its path of destruction. The Siren Purifier looks like a hammerhead shark. She’s not messing around. Those generic Siren ships are coming to join the party.
Ayanami now fights with her friends. Enterprise still comes out to save the day. Purifier says this battle is just a holiday’s eve party. I don’t like Sirens’ idea of celebration.
Oh. Prinz Eugen wanted to steal the Orochi for the Iron Blood? It didn’t happen that way, because Kaga is going to betray everybody. That Orochi really does look like a big sea serpent.