What an intense way to start off the episode. I knew taking a trip to the City of Gnome would add a lot to the narrative of the Earless, but I never would have expected this turn of events! Up until now, we were led to believe that all Earless were previously Players, but with Echo’s Sound Sickness & and aftermath of The Fest, it appears that just about anyone can become an Earless. The causes may be different depending on circumstance, but now it’s pretty much clear that no one is safe from becoming one. But is becoming an Earless really such a bad thing? Well… that’s debatable. It really depends on who you talk to, but I thoroughly appreciate the different perspectives that we’ve been given over the last few episodes.
After we see the City of Gnome practically decimated, we do a complete 180 and join Echo and Mu on their quest to find the city. Echo seems a little off, but presumably it’s because he’s been travelling on the back of the mech for too long. That doesn’t seem like a very comfortable ride… But it turns out to be something a lot more serious than just travel sickness as he collapses and is practically on his deathbed. When the idea of Sound sickness was introduced, I honestly thought it was an elaborate prank played by a stranger, but it never hit the punch line. Personally, it felt weird to have introduced in this way because prior to his collapse there wasn’t a whole lot of indication that he was feeling the effects of the illness. Perhaps I may have missed some cues along the way – but having Echo acknowledge that he’s been hiding the symptoms because they were so minor really didn’t sit well with me. It seemed out of the blue, so it was hard to take it seriously. Despite that feeling, I hope Echo is alright as they continue their quest!
After last week’s episode, I’m really glad that we got to see a perspective from someone who has always tried to connect with the Earless. Starting off with the Valentine’s and their dedication to their country (well, mostly Bilin), to moving on to Nir who, with her classmates, have accepted that their life is just to fight the Earless, then meeting Denka who was originally in favor of completely eradicating the Earless until his encounter with Jimi, and now to Roz who has never wanted to fight the Earless. I like that the anime has been able to give us these different perspectives without necessarily saying that one is better or worse than the other. Although, after this week’s episode I’m more inclined to support those who want to co-exist, but who knows if that will change.
I absolutely lost it when the Neubauten sisters showed up again. They haven’t really done anything since episode 2 and having them just show up randomly was pretty hilarious – where have they been all this time? Mu asking why they are always following them coupled with the short, but entertaining fight definitely reminded me of how Team Rocket shows up in pretty much every Pokémon, causes a little bit of chaos, but is ultimately defeated as they blast off into the sky until their next appearance. All around, their time in this episode was a good time.
I’m looking forward to next week’s episode, although, I’m a little confused as to what’s coming. I know that Echo and Mu’s next stop is Londinum which is much more militaristic than any of the other places we’ve been. However, the episode preview shows us that Nir will make an appearance! So, I’m wondering if we’re going to take a step away from our main duo to check in on what she’s been up to, or if they will reunite. Either way, I’m interested to see what’s coming!