Overview (Spoilers Below)
Military training is in full swing for Casval as he continues to pose as the deceased Char Aznable. So far, his athletic and soldierly prowess outshines Garma Zabi in every way. Garma is the youngest member of the family that poisoned his father. Things are going great, except for his suspicious roommate who knew the real Char in high school. While he can’t prove it, he strongly suspects something is up with this surprisingly capable Char.
Meanwhile, at the Mobile Suit laboratory in space, Gihren Zabi makes a surprise visit to the scorn of his brother, Dozle. While Dozle wants nothing more than to begin mass-producing these war machines—he also seems to experience euphoric pleasure while watching the destruction they inflict—Gihren wishes to cancel the project. He views it as a drain on resources the family will need in the upcoming, inevitable war.
However, Dr. Torenov Y. Minovsky, the project’s head scientist, steps in on Dozle’s behalf and explains to the eldest Zabi sibling that Mobile Suits are the wave of the future. With these destructo-bots in action far fewer combat forces will be lost as the battlefield moves to the final frontier—space. Wooed by the liver-spotted genius, Gihren rescinds his kill order and allows the program to continue.
Back at space camp, the metric-forward boys are tasked with a forty-kilometer hike while carrying 40 kilos of supplies on their backs (that’s almost ninety pounds). In an attempt to one-up Char, Garma forges ahead while the others are resting during a rainstorm. As a result, he slips on some wet rocks and falls down a deep chasm. Instead of leaving his presumed enemy in disgrace—to possibly die alone—Casval patches up Garma and helps him limp over the finish line.
The two boys are inseparable after that—as Casval continues with his sinister plan. After a rousing round of war games, the cadets are deemed fit enough to move forward. However, when Casval questions the military’s primitive weaponry and how they may only be figureheads in the greater conflict, the head officer slaps the glasses right off his face. The cadets, now protective of their classmate, don’t care that his eyes are blue and instead turn on the head office as they force him to retrieve the glasses and apologize.
Later on, Casval sees a Mobile Suit in space. Garma explains the tech to his friend and reveals that his uncle is working on weaponizing the great metallic beasts. This floors Casval as the boy decides he wants one in a really bad way. And so, the next time he and Garma are alone, he comes up with a plan to get up close and personal with this new technology.
Five episodes in and we already have new opening and closing credits. And the lack of Artesia in the opening is a little concerning. We’ve dedicated time to her story throughout the entire series, so ending her story right now doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. We left the young girl at her lowest moment and we still haven’t seen how she is dealing with the supposed death of her brother, her last surviving family member.
In this Zabi-heavy episode, we also didn’t have a check-in with Ramba or Hamon. Since Gihren was visiting the robot factory, it made sense for Ramba to lie low, but it was odd not to have a scene or two in Club Eden to see how the resistance is shaping up. Despite all that we did catch of glimpse of the growing tension between the proletariat, the federation, and the Zabi family. Power doesn’t suit Degwin, his paranoia seems to be growing and he’s more abusive toward his children than ever. Luckily Kycilia wasn’t around this weak, or that fierce cheetah might have fought back if cornered by her hateful patriarch. She’s ready to burst, believe me.
The roommate’s suspicion of Casval was a bit of a shaggy dog tale. At first, it appeared as if he was going to be a consistent thorn in our hero’s side, but by episode’s end, he fell in line with the rest of the soldiers. I suppose he acted as a catalyst to show just how charismatic and influential Casval can be, even among people he hasn’t known for very long. Lastly, it’s a little strange that with all the modern tech that exists in this world, Casval can’t find a decent pair of contact lenses to turn his eyes brown. I mean, they’re not expensive…