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EPISODE 36:
GOODBYE SOLO SHIP

ORIGINAL AIRDATE:
07/01/1981

|SCREENSHOT GALLERY|
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SYNOPSIS

The Ideon with the Ideon GunUneasy with the power of the Ide, the colonists have decided to abandon the Solo Ship and the Ideon, laying charges all over the vessel. The Earth Union lends them a cruiser named the Crap to evacuate with, and they plan to head away and establish a colony on another world. Franklin's squadron is in close attendance, but unknown to both parties, so is a fleet of seven Buff Clan battleships under the command of Galbaba Gra. The colonists leave on the Crap, but Marshall moves towards the Solo Ship, planning to take its' technology for the Earth Union. Realising they've been tricked, the colonists turn around and head back towards the ship. Just then, Galbaba's flotilla arrives and engages Marshall's force.

Galbaba watches a video of MiyaIn the chaos, the colonists return to the Solo Ship and begin work on deactivating the bombs they planted. The Earth Union team put onboard to do the same grudgingly helps. While Cosmo and Deck prepare the Ideon for battle, Gije and Kasha try to deactivate the last of the charges. However, due to an attack from a Ganga Lubu, Kasha can't deactivate one, and the engineers on the Solo Ship also fail to deactivate several bombs before the timers run out. However, the explosions are contained by the Ide, failing to cause any real damage. The colonists are shocked, but must deal with the attack first, and the Ideon launches. The Scarabelli, last survivor of the Earth force, is taken out by the Buff Clan, killing Marshall. The Ideon Gun is released, and Deck plots a line of elevation allowing the weapon to destroy all seven Buff Clan warships. The colonists reluctantly return to the Solo Ship, realising that the Ide won't allow them to abandon it and they must continue their journey.


NOTES

The Krap returns to the Solo ShipGalbaba Gra: Galbaba beams a video of his fiancee Miya dancing to his entire crew. Bit weird, that. His force is an advanced scouting unit, attached to Doba's fleet.

Gije and Kaha look on as the Ide contains an explosionCrap: Despite various attempts by otakus to rechristen the shuttle the Earth Union lends the colonists as something like Kurappu or Karappu, it's pronounced 'Crap' throughout. Best to deal with it and move on, yeh? The ship is an Earth Union cruiser. It is abandoned when the colonists return to the Solo Ship.

The Solo Ship: The ship's complement is down to just over a hundred people by this stage. We're really not given solid numbers before this, but judging by the amount of things loaded on when leaving Solo and the number of violent scrapes, it was probably a lot more early on. Some may have disembarked on Ajian as well. That said, what happens to the Earth Union bomb disposal/boarding teams after Marshall's flotilla is wiped out is left unexplained.


REVIEW:

Galbaba's squadron is destroyed by the Ideon GunOne of the series' bleakest instalments. The opening does feel like we've skipped an episode - I'm guessing at this stage Tomino saw the chips were down and tried to move the plot on, though it's a damn shame we miss whatever debate led to the plan of abandoning the Solo Ship in favour of, say, that rubbish with the worms.

Still, this one has it all, with great visuals and some interesting philosophy peppered among a huge space battle, while the Ideon is growing ever more powerful. The easy destruction of several heavy mecha which would have taken an episode apiece, and the stunning annihilation of Galbaba's force are prime examples. There's also some very interesting, trippy animation when the bombs 'go off', including a great subversion of the timer cliché - instead of the heroes deactivating the charges in the nick of time, they fail and the Ide bails them out.

The downbeat ending scene in the forest is superb, really transmitting how scared and weary the crew are of being manipulated by the Ide.