Gawain is good, but he ain’t that good.
The beginning of the end! The Black Knights storm the city and claim much of it for their own. Cornelia and her forces retreat to the Bureau, the crown jewel of Britannian Tokyo. Lelouch captures Suzaku and Cornelia relatively easily, but trouble is brewing. Viletta’s memory is back, Nina has the Ashford Knightmare, and Jeremiah is now a twisted cyborg crying out for vengeance.
First of all, Your Honour, I’d like to repeat my complaint about the shoehorned mess that is this new V.V. character. We know nothing about them, nothing about their motivations, and they can seemingly teleport at will (she moved from Avalon to Ashford through an active warzone). They just seem to be a tool for the writers to spill secrets, even though Villetta and Shirley were both set up far in advance for that exact purpose.
(You can tell I’m angry because I’m using italics.)
Despite this irritating hackeroo, The Collapsing Stage was a pretty great episode! Lelouch is in full chessmaster mode, moving hundreds of pieces into delicate situations and succeeding in spite of his own ego. Lelouch is on the precipice right now, but he’s too busy kicking ass to notice. I have a sneaking suspicion that he’ll be in deep and unexpected trouble by the next episode, if only because of all the times he almost failed in this one.
Another character in potential danger is Suzaku, who is so consumed by murderous hatred that I actually winced a couple times watching him. Vengeance is rarely a bad idea in fiction, but here I’m desperately hoping he doesn’t do it. I want him to save his soul and become the white knight he’s supposed to be, instead of one more casualty in this war. Hopefully the Ashford kids can talk some sense into him next episode.
Speaking of the kids, Lelouch taking Ashford Academy for The Black Knight’s command centre is simultaneously a stroke of genius and a colossal dick move, especially since he knows he’s forcing Kallen into a difficult situation. Her reveal was a real bummer for the group, and there’ll be some serious consequences for her regardless of who wins the war. Milly in particular seems like she took it pretty bad.
Lastly, let’s all take a moment to thank the Narrative Gods because Villetta’s finally awake! The timebomb we’ve been sitting on since episode 1.13 has finally gone off, in a delightfully subtle manner. Instead of just grabbing a phone and blabbing to her masters, she sneaks into Ashford Academy and shoots Ohgi square in the guts. Ohgi doesn’t get much love in the series, but I think his absence is going to have a major impact on The Black Knights ability to maintain the pressure they’ve been putting up so far.
A few more notes before Lelouch overestimates himself again:
- Suzaku punching out Lloyd was a delightful note for him to go out on.
- I like how clueless and non-committal the Britannian government is about all this.
- So after this episode both Guren and Gawain are out of commission? Dangerous…
- I cannot wait to see what weird amateur nonsense Nina pulls next episode.
That’s all for today! Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you tomorrow for the final episode of Code Geass. Yay!