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[Thank you, Saturn, for the screencaps!]

Gatchaman Episode 40: “Jigokillers, the People-eating Flowers Part II”

BOTP Episode: “The Fierce Flowers Part II”



 



Part II begins with Ken entering the Snack J, as one of the sadder pieces of music plays.



 



Well, he opens the door, but he doesn’t actually walk inside. The place is deserted except for Jinpei, who’s sitting at the counter with his back to the door, utterly morose and grieving.



 



Tears well up in Jinpei’s eyes and drip onto the counter as he thinks about Jun (clearly believing that she must have died inside one of the burned jigokillers) and in the light reflected from the little puddle of tears we see images of Jun as if from Jinpei’s thoughts. She’s dancing and laughing, and urging Jinpei to dance with her.



 



Now we’re back to seeing Jinpei, resting his tear-streaked face on his arm and tracing his finger through the puddle, saying “I still remember when you took me in. You saw me at the orphanage and adopted me as your brother ‘cause you were an orphan too…”



 



[Setting aside the sadness of this scene briefly, I think this is the first mention of the fact that Jun specifically singled out Jinpei when they were both living at the same orphanage and considered him her little brother (although there was no mention of her ever living at the orphanage that Jinpei revisited in episode 29 –maybe he later got transferred to a different one and met Jun there)]

Jinpei starts to sob now, burying his face in his arms. From the doorway, Ken’s eyes widen in dismay as he watches Jinpei crying, but then he closes his eyes and quietly steps back outside, closing the door.



 



He stands there for a moment, but then Ken turns and we can now see Ryu and Joe both standing against the outside wall of the Snack J. Ken treats them both to a sullen glare before beginning to walk away, but then Ryu says “I should probably go and try to talk to him, huh?” I guess he’s already peered inside and seen what bad shape Jinpei is in. Ken doesn’t say anything, but now Joe turns his head away casually, eyes closed, and says “Leave him alone. Just let him sort this out himself.” Ryu replies, frowning slightly, “But that poor kid is hurting, Joe. Jinpei has always loved Jun as if she were his real sister.” Here Joe turns head to face Ryu and snaps “Then he should fill himself with hatred for Galactor!” as his eyes contort with rage. “That hatred will help him forget!”



 



Immediately Joe turns away, adding “That’s what I did,” as he stalks off down the sidewalk.

He leaves a glaring Ryu in his wake, hands on his hips. “Sometimes I really don’t understand that guy. He’s got issues!” Yup, this brief scene nicely summarizes a lot of the fundamental differences between Joe and Ryu, and demonstrates why they sometimes don’t seem to get along so well.

Ken’s been standing some feet away during this exchange, his back to Ryu and Joe, but now he says quietly, “I wonder if what we did was wrong? Maybe we should have continued to look for her and waited to burn everything down,” as Ryu walks closer to him. Ryu tells Ken that there wasn’t a choice, or any other way to do it but now it’s Ken’s turn to snap at Ryu. “There had to be a way to do it without killing her! I can’t handle this! To hell with the Science Ninja Team!” Ryu is horrified to hear Ken saying something like that.



 



“If I wasn’t part of the Team, I would have done whatever it took to save her! She would have come first!” says Ken, revealing here, it seems, that he feels that his duty as Gatchaman ever conflicts with any possibility of a true romantic relationship with Jun. Ryu tries to point out that saving ten million people might just have to take priority over saving one person, but Ken’s in no mood to hear any rationalizations. “We’re not the only ones here to help save the people! What about the police? Or the ISO, huh?”



 



Now Ken looks down and, more quietly, adds “Why are we the ones who always have to suffer? Why do we have to sacrifice the ones we love?”
(He doesn’t use the word ‘love’ in the subs, though –it’s “Why are we the only ones who must sacrifice our teammate?”)

Ryu can’t say much to answer this, except to tell Ken that what he’s saying must be a result of all the stress he’s under. Ken, probably thinking of what he heard Jinpei saying inside, declares that Jun and Jinpei lived just like a family, despite both being orphans. “I took his family away from him,” says Ken, his voice choking up as he turns and walks away from Ryu, who can now only wonder if this is the end of the Science Ninja Team, as they all seem to be going their separate ways. I guess he’s right; Jinpei’s grief-stricken, Joe’s rage towards Galactor is even stronger, and Ken’s both wracked with guilt and coming face-to-face with the unpleasant and unjust fact that being a hero who saves the world comes with a high emotional price.

Now, they were all quite prepared to believe that the protective suit could keep Jun alive inside a jigokiller, instead of being digested, so really, it wouldn’t be much of a stretch to believe that that suit might also have flame retardant properties. But then, they might all think that if she’d been protected from the flames by the suit, she’d have escaped the jigokiller and contacted them by now.

Now we go to Dr. Nambu, still studying the jigokiller that the Team collected for him from the park. He’s peering into a microscope, while the now full-sized jigokiller writhes in a huge tank of water beside him.



 



He looks up to see that Ken, Joe, Ryu and Jinpei have just come in, and he says he’s glad they’re here. They, on the other hand, don’t look so glad to be there.



 



Ignoring or oblivious to their demeanor, Dr. Nambu explains that the jigokiller is the one from the park, and that keeping it in the dark and in water has made it grow. He goes on to explain further that jigokillers shrink down during adverse conditions, as do sea monkeys, to protect themselves. No one seems at all interested in Dr. Nambu’s lecture, and Joe even sighs and slumps against the wall. Nevertheless, Dr. Nambu persists with his exposition, saying that jigokillers likely arose and thrived in some prehistoric era when rainfall was heavy, but when conditions later became more sunny and bright, the jigokillers evolved into smaller flowers, and also became dormant spores with hard, protective coats.

Ken has a question, but not about anything Dr. Nambu is saying; he wants to know why jigokillers only attack women. “I haven’t figured that out yet,” admits Dr. Nambu, staring at the large, wriggling jigokiller in the tank, “But once I do, I should be able to come up with a plan to destroy them for good.”

“I though we took care of them already,” says a depressed-looking Ryu, “What about the jigokiller barbecue the other day?” A scowling Joe now points out that he hasn’t heard of any jigokiller attacks since then.



 



“I’m sorry, Team, but they are still thriving. Our previous attempt only temporarily stopped them from multiplying.” He says this in such a matter-of-fact way, I can only think he must not realize what effect this news will have on them. They’re all frozen, staring.



 



“We sacrificed Jun’s life, all for nothing…” says Ken, his voice fading in horrified comprehension as they all stand there, looking yet more miserable than before.

“Do you still believe that Jun was trapped inside one of those flowers?” asks Dr. Nambu. No one answers him. Ken just turns and walks out, followed by Jinpei and then Joe.



 



“What’s the matter with you all?” asks a surprised-looking Dr. Nambu, and he calls after them to no avail. Ryu is still standing there, though.

“It’s no use, Doctor,” explains Ryu, “We all think that we killed Jun. Me too, kinda…”

“What is this nonsense?” demands Dr. Nambu, frowning, “Why do none of you trust me? When she disappeared, Jun was wearing the protective suit that I made to withstand pressure and extreme heat.”



 



More vehemently now, leaning on the back of a chair, he says “Even if she was trapped inside one of those flowers, she would have remained unharmed.”

But as Dr. Nambu is saying all this, Ryu just walks out of the room, and the jigokiller in the tank waves its legs (or whatever they are) and opens its mouth wide, as if mocking them all.



 

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Sheesh, there is a massive “failure to communicate” somehow going on in these two episodes! Dr. Nambu somehow has no clue that the Team is miserable and convinced they’ve killed Jun, and they all persist in refusing to listen to him explain about the suit. I guess I can only assume that Dr. Nambu, in his fixation with scientific research, is so busy in his lab studying ways to thwart the jigokillers that he’s paying no attention to anything else, and that Jun’s continuing failure to communicate with the Team or to reappear unharmed has convinced them that she must be dead, despite the protective suit.

Now we cut to a brick-paved city street, where a massive jigokiller is bursting forth from the street, scattering bricks. Another creates a massive sinkhole in the street from underground, and a man and women (and a car) fall in, as a jigokiller rises from the sinkhole’s depths. Below, under the street, we now see that there’s a large water conduit, with many smaller pipes pouring into it, and all about are many, many jigokillers, flourishing in the wet darkness.

Burning the field of jigokillers at the reservoir, the narrator tells us, “sent millions of white spores into the sky. These spores began to take root and grow in Willy City’s underground, which is equipped with the best sewer system in the world.” Yes, the jigokillers are enjoying the world’s best sewer system. One is shown bursting forth from beneath concrete steps leading up to a massive, pillared building, and sending people flying. It then grabs and pulls down the pillars. The jigokillers are definitely not being secretive anymore, picking off women who are alone late at night and then shrinking by day. Now they’re actively destroying Willy City. Another jigokiller is shown coming out of the ground directly beneath a table of people at an outdoor restaurant, in another city street one bursts through a wall, and underground the jigokillers are also attacking the city’s subway trains. Soon, Willy City is in flames. A massive crack opens up in the ground, in a main square of the city, and in its dark depths can be seen the mouths of numerous jigokillers.



 



Now, Dr. Nambu, looking worried, comes into his lab and sits at a desk. He tries to contact Ken but has no luck. “Ken, what’s wrong? Why are you not responding?” he demands (although, really, Ryu already explained to him what’s wrong.) Well, Ken is sitting at a desk in his shack at the airfield, and although his bracelet is pinging and we can hear Dr. Nambu’s voice, Ken is ignoring it completely and just sits there with his eyes closed.



 



Dr. Nambu keeps calling “Ken, where are you? Please respond!” but finally Ken takes off his bracelet, throws it on the desk and with a defiant look back at it, he walks out of his shack. Back at his lab, Dr. Nambu sighs and gives up.



 



Now we’re seeing a TV news broadcast, all about how jigokillers are on a rampage in Willy City after emerging from the sewer system, and we can see footage of the city burning. “Turn if off!” yells Ken, and we can see that he’s sitting at the Snack J’s counter. Standing nearby, Jinpei reaches up and shuts the TV off, not saying anything.



 



Ryu and Joe come walking in now, and pause. Leaning against the door, Joe says to Ken “What’s your trip? I heard that you never responded to the Doc’s call.”



 



“Yeah, well I already know what he wants, Joe!” retorts Ken, turning around “He wants us all to fly to Willy City. You go if you want!” “Come on, Ken, you’re supposed to be the fearless leader of the Science Ninja Team,” says Ryu, coming closer and leaning his elbows on the counter. “Yeah, well I’m a human being too!” yells Ken, “I’ve had enough! Enough killing!”



 



He was staring at his hand, but now he swipes at the glass and pitcher of juice on the counter before him, knocking it all onto the floor with a smash.



 



No one seems to know what to say to that. Ken sits slumped at the counter for a moment, but then gets up and leaves. “I don’t care anymore,” says Ryu, in despair, “Do whatever you want,” as Joe glares in the direction of the departed Ken.



 



Now it’s dark outside, and Ken is approaching his shack. “Huh?” he says, looking up in surprise to see that Red Impulse is standing near Ken’s plane, hands on his hips.



 



Yes, it’s time for one of Red Impulse’s most infamous scenes, and not one I enjoy watching. “Who are you?” demands a scowling Ken, but now faint light (perhaps a cloud moved away from the moon) shines over him and Ken immediately recognizes him.



 


 



Ken’s probably assuming that Dr. Nambu sent him over there because Ken was ignoring his calls, and Ken is stalking right past Red Impulse with the clear intention of ignoring him too and heading inside.

But then Red Impulse says “You coward.” That stops Ken in his tracks.

“You’re not worthy of the name Gatchaman. To hell with the Science Ninja Team!” Ken’s eyebrows quiver. Still with his back to Red Impulse he replies “Leave me alone. I don’t know you and you wouldn’t understand anyway!”



 



“Of course I wouldn’t understand,” says Red Impulse, “You see, I’m a real man, not a spineless little wimp like you.”

“What?” demands Ken, whipping around to face him now.

“Oh, I must have hit a nerve,” smirks Red Impulse, “You look like you’re getting angry.”

Well, he’s right about that. Ken lunges at Red Impulse, yelling “You bastard!” and grabbing the lapels of his jacket.



 



Red Impulse doesn’t flinch, but he does kick one of Ken’s legs out from underneath him. Ken falls but immediately snaps himself back up to his feet and whirls to face Red Impulse.

Just in time to get kicked in the face. Hard enough to go flying back several feet through the air.



 



Ken hits the ground with a thud, on his back, but Red Impulse is immediately at him again, grabbing Ken and yanking him to his feet.

So that he can then punch Ken hard in the face and sending him sprawling onto his back again.



 



When he goes for Ken again, Ken is a bit more prepared and, still lying on his back, he grabs Red Impulse’s arm, flipping Red Impulse past him.



 



Red Impulse lands agilely on his feet, and just as Ken is standing up, he kicks Ken in the face again.



 



He immediately follows it up with another kick, to Ken’s stomach this time.



 



Ken barely has time to react to that before Red Impulse punches him in the face.



 



This sends Ken crashing back against the propeller of his plane. Ken collapses to the ground, and this time he doesn’t get up.

“Why are you so disturbed at losing a teammate?” demands Red Impulse, “I’ve had to watch many of my friends and subordinates die. Sometimes there’s no other way. You can’t protect the Earth from Galactor without getting your hands dirty.”

Ken continues to lie on the ground.

“How do you even know that Jun is dead? Have you seen any evidence? If she is dead, why don’t you salvage her bones? If she’s alive, she’s in trouble and she can’t get in touch with you. You should search thoroughly and leave no stone unturned.”

On the ground, Ken turns his head away from Red Impulse. His eyes quiver and tears run down his face.



 



“That’s what a real teammate would do,” concludes Red Impulse. A tear trickles out from beneath his mask, and he walks away.



 



Okay, while I feel that Ken’s got it rough, what with being the leader of the Team and having to put the good of the world ahead of all else etc., I do think he’s been doing too much wallowing in self pity. He could have taken a lesson from Joe about revenge and gone off to destroy jigokillers in Willy City, even if he had to do it one by one, with only his birdrang. He could have done something. Jun would have wanted him to do something, even if it was just trying to protect people in Willy City. So, I think Red Impulse has a valid point, telling Ken that he should search for Jun, whether she’s alive or not. But, bloody hell, I think he could have conveyed his point effectively in a way that didn’t involve beating the crap out of Ken! The way he catches Ken off guard and keeps hitting him and hitting him, in my opinion, goes beyond “knocking some sense into him” and into the realm of sadism. I don’t care if there’s a tear running down your face, Red Impulse –I still don’t like you.

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Presumably some time has passed and now Ken’s coming back inside his shack, and pausing to lean wearily against the door and stare up at the ceiling.



 



He walks past his desk, and just then, the face of his bracelet (still lying on the desk) begins to flash.

“It’s a bird scramble! That must be Jun!” cries Ken, grabbing his bracelet. “Jun, are you there? It’s me, Ken!”



 



But the bracelet merely flashes a couple more times, and then there’s nothing. But now a look of determination is on Ken’s face. “Jun is still alive!” his says.

Back at the lab, Dr. Nambu says “What? She sent a bird scramble?”

Now we see that Ken, Joe, Jinpei and Ryu are all there. “Yes, I’m the only one who noticed it, but the signal reached the others too,” answers Ken.

Dr. Nambu points out that bird scramble is used when verbal communication isn’t possible, and is done by pressing a Science Ninja Team bracelet hard. He thinks this could mean she’s in trouble, or it could be Galactor, in possession of Jun’s bracelet, trying to lure and trap the Team. Ken concedes that’s possible, but he’s insistent that Dr. Nambu let them all go and investigate it. We see Joe’s, Jinpei’s and Ryu’s faces now, and they all have determined expressions too. It’s very different from the slumping, gloomy team that stood before Dr. Nambu that last time, when they all walked out on him.




 


 


 


 



Standing stiffly and formally, Dr. Nambu orders “Science Ninja Team, gather and launch the God Phoenix immediately!”

Hurrah!

So we get stock footage now of the God Phoenix leaving its docking bay at the Crescent Coral Base and heading on its way. On the bridge, once again we get a look at Ken’s, Joe’s, Jinpei’s and Ryu’s faces, and they are ready and keen to go into action now. The God Phoenix speeds through the sky.

In some other nearby part of the sky, the three Red Impulse Team jets are flying along. “Looks like I knocked some sense back into you, Ken. Go, attack Galactor!” says Red Impulse, and the three jets fly off.



 



“Knock some sense back into you”? Maybe I could accept that phrase here if Red Impulse had only hit Ken once. Besides, receiving Jun’s bird scramble probably has more to do with Ken’s actions now than anything Red Impulse did.

The God Phoenix continues to fly onward. Now we’re seeing Willy City, and it’s pretty much wrecked, abandoned and given over to the jigokillers, who are openly sitting in the streets and squares.

Commercial break!

Now, the narrator explains how the UN military forces, in tanks that have flamethrowers, went moving through the city and tried to destroy the jigokillers.



 



However, they merely caused the burning jigokillers to release more spores (didn’t Dr. Nambu warn them about that?).



 



The cycle continued again in Willy City as yet more jigokillers grew as it rained and all people fled Willy City. So now, the entire city is being destroyed by tanks firing missiles and more flame throwers (um, hasn’t it been established you shouldn’t try to burn them!) and the whole place looks thoroughly devastated.

In the damaged remains of a building, Ken, Joe, Jinpei and Ryu (all in birdstyle) are watching the tanks.




 



Jinpei is upset the people are destroying their own city, and Joe points out that that’s probably just what Galactor wants –other people doing their dirty work for them. Ken then comments that it’s odd that they haven’t seen a sign of Galactor yet. He thinks they should ignore the jigokillers for the moment and start searching for Galactor’s base instead. Joe’s wonders where they should start, and Ken can only conclude that the base is probably somewhere in Willy City, and he hopes that Jun can contact them again.

Now we, at least, see Galactor. A goon is watching on a screen as UN tanks fire missiles at jigokiller-infested buildings in the city and reduce them to rubble. Captain Bug-Bat is standing right behind him, and laughs when the goon tells him that Willy City is almost completely destroyed. “Who knew that just by digging up the jigokillers’ seeds from below the Earth’s surface that we could throw the world into such turmoil?”

Now an image of Berg Katse’s head and shoulders appears inside a large glass ball.




 



He addresses Captain Bug-bat, saying he’s been informed that a woman survived the jigokillers’ attack. The Captain confirms this, and says that the woman, upon examination, was found to be wearing a protective suit. Katse wants him to keep the protective suit (it could be useful for future Galactor plans) but to execute the woman (she’s probably an ISO spy).

Meanwhile, Ken and the others are in a damaged subway tunnel, looking at a wrecked subway train.




 




Out in the city, there still are a large number of live jigokillers around, as wind blows dust through the desolate, rubble-strewn streets. Now Ken and the others are inside a damaged building. They’re all sitting on the ground and looking like despair is starting to set in again. Jinpei is creeped out by the fact that jigokillers are sitting all around them “even though I know they don’t eat boys.”




 



Joe is wondering if Jun will try to contact them again and if maybe it really is all just a Galactor trap but Ken thinks that Galactor would have acted by now if it was a trap and he still believes that Jun is alive now.




 



Meanwhile, Dr. Nambu is still hard at work in his lab on a solution for the jigokiller problem. This involves standing at a railing, overlooking the tank that holds the captive jigokiller, and staring at it.




 



As he mutters to himself, “What could the jigokillers’ weakness possibly be?” he grasps the railing, and cuts his and on a rough part of the metal railing.




 




He pulls out a handkerchief and wraps his hand and then he’s walking away but a small drop of his blood drips from the rough metal where he cut his hand and it falls into the tank below. The jigokiller goes mad, writhing and thrashing in a frenzy as Dr. Nambu turns and stares at it in amazement.



 



Then, the jigokiller sinks to the bottom of the tank, withers and dies.




 




“The jigokiller is dead,” says Dr. Nambu, baffled. “My blood touched it, and it died.” Suddenly he gasps and looks up, clearly having an “aha!” moment

“Of course, that’s the reason they don’t attack men?” He laughs, “Why did it take me so long to figure this out?”

Now comes the other part of this episode that I don’t like to watch. We’re back in the Galactor base, in a large room with a very high ceiling. Captain Bug-Bat and numerous goons are all standing on a balcony that circles the room, and they’re looking down at Jun below. She’s lying in a coffin-shaped compartment.




 




“This is Galactor’s execution platform of terror,” says Captain Bug-Bat, “We call it the iron claw.” Jun opens her eyes now and what she sees, high above her, is a lid for her “coffin” and it’s decorated with several long sharp spikes that point downward.




 




She gasps –I don’t blame her! Yikes, this is horrible!




 




The “lid” is attached to guide rails that are lowering it down slowly, so that Jun has lots and lots of time to see it coming and think about what’s going to happen when the spikes reach her.




 




“If you hadn’t been wearing that silly suit, none of this would have happened,” laughs Captain Bug-Bat and Jun struggles vainly to escape –her feet and hands are in metal cuffs that are fastened to the inside of the “coffin.” As the spiked lid continues to lower, he chuckles that he can feel her terror, and that the spikes will be skewering her any second. Jun now thrashes even harder against her bonds, and as she does so, her bracelet on her wrist bangs several times against the inside of the coffin. (Clearly Captain Bug-Bat, unlike Dr. Mukushiski in episode 38, doesn’t recognize a Science Ninja Team bracelet when he sees one or she probably wouldn’t be wearing it anymore.)




 



The other Science Ninjas are still sitting in the damaged building, but now their bracelets begin to flash.



 




Certain this is another bird scramble from Jun, they all stand up and rush to the God Phoenix and take to the air.




 

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On the bridge, Joe gets a fix on the bird scramble’s point of origin, and Ken orders Ryu to take them there. The God Phoenix speeds through the air, low over the city (so low it clips a piece of a mostly destroyed building –watch where you’re flying, Ryu!) Meanwhile, the lid of spikes is getting still closer to Jun, and she’s really panicking now. On the bridge of the God Phoenix, Joe is getting a better idea of Jun’s location on the radar screen, and says that Galactor’s base must be down inside the sewer system.



 



The lid of spikes is only inches away from Jun now, but the God Phoenix bashes right through a group of three large drains pouring water, and then its nose breaks through the wall of the room where Jun, Captain Bug-Bat and the goons are. In fact, the God Phoenix’s nose breaks in right on the level of the balcony where several goons are standing and they go plummeting down as the God Phoenix’s nose rams into the guide rails that are lowering the lid of spikes.



 


 



The lid stops moving, just as Jun was about to be skewered.



 




As Captain Bug-Bat reacts angrily to this development, Ken, Joe, Jinpei and Ryu appear on the nose of the God Phoenix.

“This is the end of the line, Bat-brain!” shouts Ken, and all the Ninjas jump down from the nose to attack.

It’s the big fight scene (the good fight scene –not that other one!)

Ken takes out two goons with kicks.



 



Joe hurls another one over the balcony railing and shoots his cable gun such that the cable ensnares the wrist of a goon who was going to try to shoot him.




 



Jinpei then runs up the cable, as if it were a tightrope, and kicks the goon in the head. Hmm, this is new fighting technique, I think.



 



Joe and Ken each clobber another goon, but Ryu is now running up to Jun.



 



He’s trying to heave the spiked lid away so that she can get out from underneath it.

Three goons rush at him, but he sends them flying with a powerful kick. Ken and Joe continue to dispatch goons, and Joe punches one so hard in the face, his mask cracks and falls away. Jun’s hands and feet have been freed, and just as Ryu finally lifts the spiked lid away from Jun and stands it upright, she sits up.




 


 



But, two goons rush Ryu from behind.

However, Ryu grabs them and flips them over his shoulders and they end up crashing right into all the spikes on the lid, where they remain stuck briefly before falling to the floor below. Ack! No blood shown, but that is nasty!




 



Jun leaps up and grabs onto one of the lid’s guiderails, spinning around as she transmutes to birdstyle and joins the fight.



 


 



She gets some good blows in and takes down some of the goons herself.



 


 



Ken finishes off the rest. Now, the only one left is Captain Bug-Bat.



 



“Preying on helpless women,” growls Ken, glaring at him, “You’re just a coward!”



 



With that, he punches the Captain hard in the stomach. Captain Bug-Bat wavers for a moment, and then collapses.



 




Now Ken turns around, still with a fierce expression on his face.



 



He sees Jun staring at him, her eyes full of hope and expectation, saying “Ken!” Joe, Jinpei and Ryu discreetly stay much further back (but their expressions suggest they’re expecting what she’s expecting).



 



The fierce look in his eyes seems to soften, and he turns his head slightly to one side, but then he swings a hand out and smacks her face.



 


 



You have to wonder if he, consciously or unconsciously, is thinking of what Red Impulse did to him earlier…

Jun bows her head but stays where she is. Ken looks down at his feet, but says, a bit coldly, “You acted on your own, without receiving orders, Jun.”



 



“Big Bro knows he’s happy!” declares a disappointed and frowning Jinpei to Ryu.



 



“He should be hugging on her,” he says, demonstrating.



 



Ryu thinks Jinpei’s getting “a little carried away.” I think the subbed lines are better here –Jinpei says “Big Brother isn’t honest with how he feels, is he? If he’s happy, why can’t he embrace her instead?”

I think a lot of people have asked that question, Jinpei!

At any rate, now we see the three Red Impulse Team jets taking off, and Dr. Nambu is watching this on a screen. He contacts Ken, and is informed that Jun has been located and rescued. (I wonder if they ever get that protective suit back.)



 



Dr. Nambu now tells them all that he’s figured out how to destroy the jigokillers for good –they don’t attack men because men’s Y chromosomes are poisonous to them. So, he explains, he’s made special bombs filled with Y chromosomes from a chromosome research lab, and the Red Impulse Team is on their way to deploy them over Willy City.

We see each of the three jets fire a missile-shaped chromosome bomb at Willy City.




 



A large explosion erupts into the air over the city, but then it begins to rain.



 



The rain goes everywhere, even down into the sewers, and all the jigokillers begin to thrash around, whither and die.

“The jigokillers are finally gone,” says Ken, as he and the others watch.

“If only we’d found the solution sooner, we could have saved the city from being destroyed,” replies Jun, standing beside Ken. I guess she’s able to handle receiving a slap instead of an embrace from him -she doesn't seem to be holding a grudge.




 



The others are standing a bit further away. Jinpei notices the Red Impulse jets in the sky. Ken’s staring up at the jets and we see Red Impulse himself in his cockpit.



 



“You know,” says Ken, “I just can’t help but feel some kind of strange connection to that man.” Joe wants to know why, and asks what happened.

“I guess he beat some sense into me,” replies Ken.

In the subs, the narrator says “By baptizing him with a rough, iron fist, Red Impulse helped Gatchaman get back on his feet.” In the dub, it’s “Although his methods may be questionable, Red Impulse prompted Gatchaman to get back on his feet.”
Less accurate though it may be here, I rather agree with the dub version. Very questionable, indeed!

The episode closes with Team watching the sun set over Willy City.



 


The End.

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Hi all!

quote:
[Setting aside the sadness of this scene briefly, I think this is the first mention of the fact that Jun specifically singled out Jinpei when they were both living at the same orphanage and considered him her little brother (although there was no mention of her ever living at the orphanage that Jinpei revisited in episode 29 –maybe he later got transferred to a different one and met Jun there)]


It is important to note that the dubbed line, "I still remember when you took me in. You saw me at the orphanage and adopted me as your brother 'cause you were an orphan too…," was somewhat modified from the original by ADV. In the original, Jinpei simply says that Jun took him in because Jinpei was an orphan like she was, and makes no reference to her thinking of him as her brother. The line also gives no indication that Jun was living at an orphanage at that time.

Also, don't forget that we learn later (In episode #95, to be specific) that Jun found Jinpei at Mt. Jupiter before he went to the Shirayuki Orphanage, so the incident that he is referring to was not the first time they had met. Though, considering his young age at the time, this may be the first that he can actually recall.

James

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Another great job LB and Saturn! LB ITA with all your comments!

These last two episodes are full of issues for us to ponder upon! Family ties from the past and present are mentioned which give a greater overview of the team members' personal life.

I too think that RI's reaction in order to squeeze some sense out of Ken's mind was unforgivable! Why not trying to do so verbally, with the good old words! Personally, if I were in Ken's place, I would have been more depressed after the beating, feeling more of a loser than I would have felt in the first place where I'd lost a team member through my actions and commands! Ken could have tried to make an effort and to endeavour in searching Jun before losing all hope but I also think that, sometimes, tragic circumstances take the toll over human minds, the last mentioned not enabling us to think clear! Maybe Ken needed some shaking to awake from his depressed state but surely not in that way! Could it be that when he slapped Jun (here, I scowl the Swan for not reacting to it!) he just wanted to swap situations, that is from the one being scowled to the scowler?! Perhaps he didn't want to seem a wimp in front of his subordinates as he was feeling deep inside! And he didn't want to show her that he cared for her as much as he did!

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ITA with everyone here...great comments on such an in depth episode! And LB and Saturn...wonderful job on these as usual!!

I also love that you showed some of the distinct differences between the ADV dub and the original subs here...there are a lot in these two eps!

Ah, the slap heard round the world...if you look closely, Jun's reaction is strange...she almost appears to be smiling at Ken?

And Ken doesn't really look that mad before he hits her... open handed with the back of his fingers...I'm wondering are there different types of slaps with different meanings?

Did he feel like he *had* to discipline her in front of the others (treat her like everyone else?) I did notice the way the other team members were watching like they expected him to hug her and show how he felt... I wish he had after all of the fuss he made...Anime Smooch

I did a silly caption once...b/c she reminded me of Marsha Brady after Davy Jones kissed her (on the Brady Bunch) anyone see that?

 

and at the end, Ken says that RI beat some sense into him...but he really came to his senses after he received the Bird Scramble from Jun...

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Another great review over a very controversial eps.

My theory on the slap - I think Ken's emotions are in such turmoil he does not know HOW to react - anger that she left, anger at himself, fear that he killed her, relief that she has been found, relief that she is safe. Love and rage I am told are opposite sides of the same coin and can become confused in one's mind. For someone like the team (Ken) who doesn't seem to have much experience in love they (he) could easily take the wrong interpretation and initially focus on the rage he feels.

Although it would have been nice for Ken to realize he took the wrong emotion at first and apologize by putting his arm around Jun afterwards or at least by the ending scene.

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quote:
Originally posted by tatsunokofan

It is important to note that the dubbed line, "I still remember when you took me in. You saw me at the orphanage and adopted me as your brother 'cause you were an orphan too…," was somewhat modified from the original by ADV. In the original, Jinpei simply says that Jun took him in because Jinpei was an orphan like she was, and makes no reference to her thinking of him as her brother. The line also gives no indication that Jun was living at an orphanage at that time.


Thanks for the clarification. Because Jun is also an orphan, and must have been fairly young when she and Jinpei met, (10-12?) I tend to assume that they were living in the same orphanage, but if that's not actually stated, then that allows for other possible scenarios .

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Regarding the "slap heard round the world" (hee!) I agree that Ken was probably very conflicted, and also put on the spot with the whole Team watching. I can well believe that he wanted to hug or even kiss Jun, but after all his gloom and despair about realizing that Gatchaman has to be prepared to, in a sense, kill Jun to save the world, and after being called a coward and a wimp by RI, and then being beaten up "for his own good" (something that Ken himself accepts, however warped that may be) I can understand why Ken, in that moment, chose to be the all-about-duty G-1 rather than just Ken. He probably just can't believe that he can afford to be vulnerable in that way.

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“Why are you so disturbed at losing a teammate?” demands Red Impulse, “I’ve had to watch many of my friends and subordinates die. Sometimes there’s no other way. You can’t protect the Earth from Galactor without getting your hands dirty."

I just saw the double meaning in that line and thought of TJ's ficcie. (He could be good, ready to get in and make all the sacrifices, but then...mmm) That line always got me a little because of that. It almost suggests Red Impulse has a side thats prepared to kill no matter what...darker, forboding, thats never really revealed in the series.

IB, From teh worried look on his face and then slapping her it was like a huge conflict was going on inside of him. The part of " She's a subordinate, like the rest treat her the same." To " I almost lost her...damn it."

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You did a great job wrapping up this episode, LB! I agree, Ken's slap was over the top, but then to be fair, the Team all smack each other around all of the time, so why should a girl be treated differently?

Still, my 'shipper heart hates it! I have my own theorie4s as to why Ken did it... and you'll see them when I post Ties That Bind Part II (coming shortly, as soon as I can get time on my hands to format and upload it).

IMHO, this episode takes Ken's feelings for Jun 6to a new level. Not that he acts on them (of course not... Doh2 ) but I think he recognizes here how much she means to him. What he does about that of course.... well, that's been covered a few times in fanfic (and certainly in my own fanfic).

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I just noticed the botp part 2 is not here, Will it be posted? only ask because I love the comments that accompany both so much especially the little zark ones lol

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You'd have to ask SJ, FB! She's supposed to be doing the BOTP updates on the even-numbered episodes, but she's been gone for awhile. Unfortunately, I don't have the time to do the BOTP updates twice a week.

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not to worry will read when she has the time just thought it was me ...still love what you're doing though!

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Part II.

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Ace doesn NOT slap Aggie.

RI does beat the crap out of Ace, with much the same speech.

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The one cut we can all get behind. (Look around: Green wrote a cute bit about what happened AFTER the slap. It involved Jun's yo-yo and Ken's boy-parts. I think it's in the 'General' heading.)

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Battle of the Planets Episode: The Fierce Flowers Part II

“This is 7-Zark-7 at Center Neptune,” says Zark as we see Center Neptune, “Attention Security. We will be maintaining red alert emergency until further notice. All personnel remain at defense stations.”

And now we see Zark, descending in his transport tube as he informs us that the Spectran flowers are now spreading inland. “The spores, carried on the wind, now wait only for rain to bring them sprouting into menacing life.”

Zark has reached the bottom of the tube and exits, and just in case someone watching missed last week’s Part I, he adds “In case you haven’t seen these flowers, they’re not your usual pretty little things. No indeed, those flowers are wrecking our cities and even worse, they’ve captured Princess.”

Zark flaps his cape and flies towards his monitors, going right over 1-Rover-1 who cranes his head to watch this ungainly traversal.

At his monitors, Zark explains that they’re still trying to find Princess, but they don’t have any way to tell “which flower she may be imprisoned within.” And, he adds, Earth’s best scientists are still baffled by the flowers and “G-Force is demoralized by the loss of Princess.”

And we cut to the street in front of Jill’s diner, where sad music is playing at Mark is approaching the door. Mark opens the door but pauses and only looks inside. The place is empty except for Keyop sitting on a stool at the counter, slumped forward on his elbows. He doesn’t seem to notice Mark at all.

“Princess…” says Keyop in a quavering voice as tears well up in his eyes and run down his face. A tear splashes onto the counter, and in it we see an image of Keyop’s memory of Princess happy and dancing. “Hi everybody, it’s a beautiful day!” says this memory of Princess as we hear Keyop cheerfully answering “Hi Princess!” as she continues to dance. But then we’re back to Keyop, slumped even further onto the counter and tracing one finger through the little teary pool he’s made on the counter’s surface.

“Don’t care… what happens anymore… I miss you, Princess.” He warbles sadly, saying “Oh Princess,” and then he buries his face in his arms.

Still standing the doorway, Mark looks sad himself as he watches Keyop sobbing quietly over at the counter, but he quietly closes the door and steps back outside.

He turns his head and we see that Tiny and Jason are there too, leaning against the wall a short distance away and looking glum (Tiny) and pissed off (Jason).

Mark looks like he’s about to just walk away without saying anything, but Tiny asks him “How’s Keyop taking it, Mark?”

“How do you think the kid’s feeling?” demands Jason, looking away, “Terrible.”

“Heck, Jason,” says Tiny defensively, “No need to lose your cool –I was just asking.”

Jason turns an angry glare, with eyes contorting, on Tiny. “Then quit asking stupid questions –Princess is gone! Leave Keyop alone!”

Ah, but this is BOTP and we can’t have anyone being too rude to one of their teammates, so as Jason turns and stalks off, he adds a “Sorry, Tiny.”

“Hey Team, I feel bad too!” declares Tiny, staring indignantly after Jason.

“Forget it, Tiny,” says Mark quietly, standing with his back towards Tiny and his arms crossed.

“But I can’t forget about Princess,” says Tiny, approaching Mark.

“I never thought I could get so angry at a bunch of flowers,” says Mark, eyes closed.

“What do we do now? What’s going to happen to G-Force?” asks Tiny.

“I don’t know,” says Mark, opening his eyes now and glancing back at Tiny, “Until Zark or the Chief come up with something, there’s not much we can do.”

Judging from his expression, Tiny is appalled by this, but he says “We can’t quit now, Commander,” in a fairly level tone, “Got to keep trying to find Princess.”

Mark has closed his eyes again, but at least he’s no longer got his back to Tiny. “She’s gone, Tiny, and I take full responsibility. It’s my fault.”

And he turns away again and this time, he starts walking away too, adding “All my fault.”

Tiny doesn’t try to follow him, and remarks to himself, “I guess Mark’s taking it harder than all of us.”

Actually, it kind of looks like Keyop’s currently taking it the hardest but then Tiny didn’t see Keyop inside, sobbing like he’s sure Princess is dead. I wonder if Mark’s (and Jason’s) “She’s gone,” means they think she’s dead, but if that’s what Mark thinks, I’d expect him to sound even more upset than he does here. Zark, on the other hand, was clear that he thinks Princess is alive but captured. Maybe that’s what Mark and Jason think too, but they fear they won’t be able to find her and rescue her.

“He and Princess,” continues Tiny, “They had good vibes.” Heh, so ‘70s…

Meanwhile, Chief Anderson is staring into a microscope, presumably at Center Neptune, as a massive flower writhes in a tank of water nearby and Zark voice-overs “We’ve finally identified the frightening flowers. Somehow water acts as a catalyst, turning the tiny buds into giant flowers.”

“Oh, there you are,” says Anderson, looking up from his microscope to see Mark, Keyop, Tiny and Jason standing there, looking pissed off (Jason) or glum (everyone else).

They say nothing, but Anderson tells them “I’m sorry, I know why you’re here. There’s little I can tell you.”

But he tells them that he’s identified the flowers’ origins and also that he suspects that Spectra is operating from a base here on Earth, using the flowers.

But a sad looking Keyop asks “Princess?”

“Zark is doing everything he can to locate her,” says Anderson gravely, “In the meantime, I’ve been studying this flower.”

He turns towards the tank, where the flower continues to writhe. “We have to find some chemical ingredient that will permanently destroy it.”

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But Tiny looks miserable and Jason is leaning against the wall, eyes closed, scowling and with arms crossed.

“They seem to be able to thrive anywhere on Earth,” continues Anderson, “They appear to be indestructible.” And we get a look at a bunch of the flowers writhing happily as a volcano erupts in the distance behind them. “They thrive on slopes of active volcanoes, they proliferate in our swamplands.” And now we see and underwater landscape and then a small flower in a desert. “They even grow in our hottest deserts,” says Anderson, “They are capable of hibernating inside those pods [and we see some some pods lying on a parched bit of desert] till the first rains hit [and we see big, active flowers enjoying a heavy rain] then something is triggered inside them causing them to grow overnight into voracious creatures.”

“It seems harmless enough inside that tank,” says Mark.

“I’ve noticed,” says Anderson, “Inside here it seems to lack direction, almost as though it needed someone to command it.”

“You mean you think someone is deliberately sicking those flowers on us?” asks Tiny, though I would think it apparent, seeing as Anderson was talking about Spectrans having a base on Earth and using the flowers barely a minute ago.

“They didn’t drop out of the sky just by accident, Tiny,” says Jason sarcastically.

(Oh, and Tiny still looks glum to the point of somnolence and Jason still looks pissed off.)

“I believe Spectra is behind it,” replies Anderson, “But I’m afraid all I’ve been able to come up with is pure speculation.”

For some reason, everyone looks shocked and stricken by this statement.

“Then there’s nothing much we can do, Chief,” says Mark, sounding calmer than he looks, “We can’t destroy the flowers and we don’t know what’s happened to Princess.”

Hmm, so they all already know they didn’t destroy all the flowers by setting them on fire? That makes it harder to understand what they do next.

Gloomy-looking silence prevails, and Keyop sighs morosely.

“I wish I had better news for you,” says Anderson, “I’m sorry I haven’t.”

No one replies, and Mark, Keyop and Jason abruptly walk out of the room.

Chief Anderson’s eyes widen at this, but all he says is “Stand by in the Phoenix, Tiny. I may need you.”

“Don’t be too hard on Mark, Chief,” says Tiny [Was Anderson really being hard on him? Or is Tiny making excuses in advance for Mark’s silent and rather impromptu departure?], “He’s in deep shock right now over Princess.”

I guess Mark registers deep shock by looking upset yet sounding fairly calm. Really, the body language and the dialogue all seem a bit incongruous in this scene.

Anderson frowns. “I know we’ll hear from her, Tiny. I’m betting on it. That synthetic second skin she was wearing was designed to protect her from those fearful flowers.”

He leans his hands on a chair back, eyes closed but contorting slightly, saying “But she could have been trapped inside one of them and taken somewhere.”

Tiny walks out, and the flower in the tank writhes vigorously and gapes its “mouth” wide at Anderson –whatever Mark may think, it doesn’t exactly look harmless inside that tank!

Elsewhere, a large flower tentacle shoves its way up through the middle of a brick-paved street, no doubt alarming the people sitting nearby at outdoor tables with umbrellas. Quickly, the whole flower emerges into the open, followed by another, and we see that they’ve just come up from an underground water (or sewage) conduit and that many more flowers are lurking in there too.

“The giant flowers are everywhere,” voice-overs Zark, as we see more flowers in an underground conduit, “Slowly but surely they are destroying our city. Luckily, we have advanced warning and have evacuated all people from the threatened city.”

I guess that means those people at the outdoor tables got away to safety in time!

And we see more of the flowers sitting in a stream of water that’s coming out of a pipe somewhere, and then a view of a ruined city in flames, with flowers writhing in an open city square. Elsewhere, a large section of brick-paved street suddenly splits open, and in the dark chasm this creates, the sinister “eyes” of numerous flowers peer out.

Meanwhile, Chief Anderson enters a room at (I assume) Center Neptune and strides purposefully over to a console. Pushing a switch, he says “Code 33 O 4, this is an emergency.” Sweating, he picks up a receiver and holds it to his ear, “Calling Mark, come in, Mark.”

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