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Blue Gender #6 PDF Print E-mail
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R2 DVD Reviews
Written by maehara   
Friday, 09 February 2007 00:00
Blue GenderTime for another volume of Blue Gender, and as Second Earth's plans for the Sleepers they've recovered become clearer, Yuji's behaviour begins to change as bloodlust and the desire to destory the Blue begins to take over.  With Marlene growing ever more concerned about her friend's new attitude, a faction opposing the High Council's plans tries to recruit her into their plans...

16 - A Sign
A large attack force is sent to Earth, the first wave in a new campaign to reclaim the planet from the Blue.  Yuji, in his first mission with the Sleepr Brigade, is awed when a fellow Sleeper Tony wipes out an entire Blue nest on his own, and determines to be the best, at any cost.  But is this unhealthy obsession with beating Tony really a symptom of a much greater problem?

LookoutTony

17 - Eclosion
The Sleeper Brigade's mission to Africa continues, and Marlene notices that Yuji's behavior is getting stranger and stranger.  On the battlefield he is a force to be reckoned with, but he has an unhealthy obsession with destroying the Blue - to the point that, when they encounter a group of children hiding out in the jungle, it's Marlene that tries to befriend them while Yuji seems happy to ignore them.  Has Yuji turned into something that he once despised, a cold-blooded killer?

Command & controlLocals in danger

18 - Chaos
The Sleeper Brigade's actions during the last mission to Earth have been something of a morale-booster, and Second Earth's leadership plans to build some momentum by launching a follow-up mission - but Marlene and some of the medical staff working with the Sleepers are beginning to become concerned by what's happening to them.  Director Miyagi, head of the Sleeper programme, reveals to Marlene the true cause of Yuji's accelerated rate of achievement: an infestation of "B cells" that have begun to eat away at his mind.  Unless she can do something to stop it, Yuji's sanity will soon slip away completely...

Yuji in his elementBad dreams

Yuji's ever more the centre of attention - Alicia's still trying to flirt with him, and Marlene's trying to keep his feet on the ground (figuratively speaking) - but his new "kill, kill, kill" attitude means he's pretty much ignoring everyone who can't help him with his obsession of defeating the Blue.  That leads to something of a role-reversal for him in episode 17 - while back in Seoul he was the one befriending the locals and trying to stop Marlene from treating them as cannon fodder, now in Africa it's Yuji who's ignoring individual lives while Marlene tries to see if there's any humanity left in him.  In short, he's become a bit of an arsehole, with most of his likeable and redeeming personality traits long gone.

Interestingly, Alicia so far seems unaffected by the B-cell infestations that are affecting Tony and Yuji - she's remained stubbornly normal, perhaps because she seems more interested in having a normal teenage life than in getting too much into the military way.  I'm wondering what purpose she serves in the overall story, though - she's got no chance of making an impression on Yuji, she's not much use in a fight, and Marlene fills the fanservice & love interest roles already.  Hopefully they'll make some real use of her somewhere in the remaining volumes.

The political manoeuverings are the key to events now, though.  Miyagi seems to have more of a heart than the High Council - he's concerned enough about what's been happening to Yuji and Tony to want to call a halt to the Sleeper operations, partly through wanting to protect them but mostly as he's only too aware of the real origin of the Blue and wants to stop the situation from getting worse.  Without wanting to spoil too much - the Sleepers' combat abilities are the result of an increase in B-cells.  Think what B could stand for in this case...

These episodes aren't quite as enjoyable as the earlier part of the series was, I'll admit, but they're still easy to watch and there's a certain amount of tension introduced when you begin to realise what's happening to Yuji and Tony.  There's maybe a little too much emphasis on the action in these episodes, as well - but with the plotting becoming more prominent towards the end of the disc, hopefully that'll change in the remaining eps.  What's here is still well worth watching, though.

Rating - ***

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