Whoa, plot twists! Before I start with them, I must say that I finally realized how incredibly versatile the second half of this anime had been. It started out as a case-based series, then, with Kirie and Maki it turned into science-fiction, then with Takami and Aiko, the political undertones of this series suddenly got lots of attention, and the past two episodes have yet again changed the main focus, as they start to explain all of the mysteries in the series. It’s hard to name a series where the difference is so noticeable.
Anyway, this episode: Yoko’s background. It seems that her original world has been visited by a Koemushi-like creature as well. Yoko wasn’t part of the pilots, but her brother was. He already was a huge brat at that time, but it seems that the group of children had also decided to battle until their deaths. Then, if I understood things correctly, the gray Koemushi came with a revelation when Yoko’s brother was the final pilot left: if he were to travel to different worlds, enlisting people for the very same game, he’d be allowed to live. With this news, he became overjoyed, and gladly accepted this for the chance to keep living. Yoko, while she didn’t like this, still decided to accompany her brother.
They then travelled through countless other worlds, where their robot always ended up defeated at one point. Then they reached Kokopelli’s world, where they met him. Things were a bit different in that world, as Yoko entered a class as a transfer-student in order to get them to sign up, and she became friends with them. Kokopelli’s daughter was among that class, and Kokopelli was their teacher. He was the one who nudged his daughter to enlist.
Kokopelli became like Tanaka when he found out the true nature. I guess he felt responsible for it, and offered his life, in exchange for others (aka, his daughter). Obviously, with Koemushi, this didn’t turn out as planned. In the end, only he and his daughter remained alive. I think that it’s then when they knew about the final pilot being the one to remain alive. Kokopelli offered himself, to keep his daughter alive, though Koemushi had different plans, and chose the daughter instead. When Kokopelli’s wife tried to commit suicide along with him afterwards, he suddenly was begging for his life. After that, he went on to help Koemushi and Yoko.
At least, that explanation makes the most sense. There are quite a few details in this episode I didn’t get, like why didn’t Kokopelli turn into a Koemushi as well? And why did he so easily throw his life away in the first episode? Why didn’t we see the last fight of Kokopelli?
And holy god, I suddenly realize how similar Yoko and Koemushi are to Jun and Kana! With Kanji being the next pilot, And after that only Seki and Jun are left, and it really seems like Koemushi is trying to make Jun into the next Koemushi, due to Kana being there. There’s also a thing I’ve been wondering for the past few episodes: the final pilot. Now that Kirie killed two, and Tanaka died, there should be no need for it. But according to THAT Anime Blog‘s entry of episode 17, the line-up that Koemushi mentioned consisted out of all the pilots (Komoda – Jun – Seki – Tanaka – Kanji). This has confused me for quite a few episodes already.
Anyway, next episode should be awesome: Kanji is going to pilot! (at least, I hope ^^;)