As an aftereffect of Ao firing the cannon, dubbed the Quartz Gun, a light has been continually shining over Norway, suggesting to the others that they may be some truth in Ao’s insistence that its use has changed the past.
Aside from that there has also been an increase in Trapar related reactions similar to that which Naru has had, and in response to the Scub being seen as alien there have been protests against it on Okinawa, the guy who helped Ao out earlier seemingly being killed in one only to be taken in and healed by the Naru and the Scub. Then preaching about the voice of the Scub and how it shouldn’t belong to anyone.
Following this Fleur and Elena do a photo shoot for their anime, finding that they’re under some pressure, while Ao happens to be talking with Gazelle again who once more dismisses his claims that there was a Team Goldilocks, however to Juno is sounds like something he read in Dr Johansson’s book, going on to describe how Scub Bursts have been distorting the world, learned from a boy he found after the Scub Burst on Okinawa, and various differences between the world in the show and that of real life. The Scub Bursts effectively halving the population, preventing countries from recovering as quickly as they did after the World War II, and making nuclear power incredibly unstable. From this Ao believes that the members of Goldilocks must still be out in the world and has Georg look for them, eventually finding Chloe and Maggie in Ireland, and heading there to see whether they’re any happier from this life.
After this Pied Piper investigate some Scub Coral in international waters but find themselves confronted by a neighbouring country that is against them snatching up the Quartz, forcing them to try to pull back to avoid any further hostilities until the Quartz Gun goes berserk. Being drawn to the Nirvash and snatching up the Quartz before he can react, provoking their opponents and eventually leading to Ao running into Truth. Who appears to regard the Quartz Gun with utmost importance and tries to take it from him, Eureka then appearing before Ao again and explaining that as she is now, she’s currently scattered across space and time. To this Ao declares that he’ll bring her back and after hearing about the Quartz Gun being what his father had been looking for, gains the resolve to protect and perfect it, taking it back from Truth but still not having the will to distort space and time by firing it at him. After which however, the Allied Forces under Tanaka arrive and offer him asylum.
It still appears to be moving at a snail’s pace but it’s still interesting to see that the plot is starting to pick up, Ao is finally taking a definitive role within it and all the stuff about Johansson that was waved in front of us is finally being touched upon. That said I can’t say I liked how some things were handled.
Just like Ao’s dreams in the previous episode his meeting with Eureka brought in some interesting details, but the general execution of it was that of something to fit the story where it needed to be as opposed to bringing the story to that point, the fact that they were crammed right before they were actually necessary making it more prominent. We had been told details about the mysterious cannon, the Quartz Gun, from the previous episode but when Ao was confronted by a Truth who intended to take it from him, he needed a reason to stop him from doing so, a reason that he didn’t quite have. So while I liked how the Quartz Gun was presented as something that could bring Ao’s family back together, Ao’s second meeting with Eureka really should have been handled beforehand, which I guess it didn’t have time to do.
Aside from that I’m not entirely sure how to feel about how Goldilocks were dealt with, Chloe and Ao’s interactions in the past episodes had been nice and they received a good amount of screen time, but at the same time they didn’t really do anything. Despite being one of Generation Bleu’s three teams, one of which is preoccupied at all the times, they were portrayed as a comparably less competant counterpart/backup team to Pied Piper, using grunt machines and messing up quite a few times. However despite the amount of screen time they had received their characters were effectively thrown out in this episode, their departure added a sense of significance in using the Quartz Gun and there was something bittersweet in seeing Ao visit them in Ireland, but considering how much attention they were given I’m kind of unsure about it.
Other than that while they seemed poorly thought out I liked the deeper insight that Juno gave us in comparing the world of the series to that described by Johansson, the one that we know ourselves. Simply providing a further insight into it and connecting the dots on a few things that had briefly shown up along the way, such as how the Soviet Union was shown to have not collapsed in the previous episode, the world generally being seen as one which is only just starting to recover despite appearing technologically superior. Along with that it also provides Truth with some sort of definable motive, knowing just how distorted the world has become because of the Scub, he wants to correct it and the Quartz Gun providing the means for such. Either way it was interesting to see these details noted.