April 18, 2013

Vividred Operation Ep12

The final episode of a series is usually accompanied by one or more emotions.  A sense of relief?  A feeling of accomplishment?  Sadness?  Joy?  I know I've felt all of these at the end of shows, good and bad.  However, when it comes to the type of show that I do writeups for, an approaching final episode does nothing but fill me with dread.  "Saving the best for last" is not what Rio Rainbow Gate! or High School of the Dead are known for (Ga-Rei Zero was actually a good show, and therefore exempt from these statements).  And, if we must be honest with ourselves, it's not like we're expecting much of anything out of Vividred Operation, right?  So when last episode ended with Hot Dark Girl Rei and her kickarse scarf being swallowed whole by Croooow!, it's not like there was any feeling of dramatic tension or anything.  Of course Team Aquos will rescue her, and of course there'll be a VividBlack appearance, and of course it'll kick Croooow!'s feathery tail into next week.  None of this is in doubt, the Production Staff isn't creative enough to do anything else.  The only question in my mind going into Ep12 was "Will Gendo Plushyferret be put back into his human body, and how will they manage it?"  Well, let's find out, shall we?  Welcome to the final episode of Vividred Operation!

Huh.  Looks a lot like the end of the penultimate episode of Vividred Operation.  That's Ascended Croooow!, after swallowing Hot Dark Girl Rei and her kickarse scarf, and there's still absolutely no resemblance to one of Evangelion's Angels.  None at all.  Purely coincidental.  Please don't sue us, Gainax.

RHF has gone into mental BSOD, crying about how she couldn't protect Hot Dark Girl Rei, while the other three just look at her like she's gone insane.  To be fair, that's pretty much how I feel about myself regarding this entire show, so I can't honestly hold that against them.  Y'know what?  I just wrote that sentence, and I honestly can't claim there's that much vitriol behind my words.  Vividred Operation doesn't create the sort of WTF levels that, say, High School of the Dead or Rio Rainbow Gate! caused in me.  It's just sorta there, and that's a bad place for a show to be.  It's a dead fish wrapped in newspaper of a series, lying on your doorstep, slowly beginning to smell in the midday sun, and perhaps you need to clean that up. 

MegaCroooow! proves to be even more powerful than the Alones... conventional weaponry could at least whittle away at them, but the Black Bird of Doom proves to be impervious to everything thrown at it, short of N2 mines, or whatever it is they call those here in this Eva wannabe.  But then, just when all hope seems lost and more, Gendo Plushyferret discovers that M-m-m-m-monsterCroooow! has the exact same energy signature as Hot Dark Girl Rei and her kickarse scarf... she's still alive, and inside that thing.

Well, yeah.  Seeing how this show has been more about Rei and less about the nominal main character, RHF, you'd kinda expect her to be alive, wouldn't you?  I also expect to see Vividscarf by the time this is all over.  Heh.  Vividscarf Operation... I'd pay good money for that.

Okay, so we've discovered that Rei is alive inside MegaCroooow!, and ohbytheway, the amount of energy it's putting out is ginormous.  And it's exactly the opposite of the type used to power the Vivid System.  Go figure, huh?  Ain't it always the way?

So here's Rei.  Inside MegaCroooow!.  You'll forgive me, but that looks nothing at all like the inside of any bird I've ever seen.  Oh, the color matches, sure, but c'mon, glowy orbs of floaty energy that can be used at LED screens?  Inside a bird?  I could maybe understand if it was inside a MegaCapybara, maybe, but a bird?  You go too far, Vividred Operation, you go too far.

After proclaiming itself the Overlord of All The Universes, or something boastful along those lines, it declares that the Earth is not fit to exist, and it knows just how to do away with it.  Phlebotinum Engine, here we come!  Gendo Plushyferret deems this a legit threat and everybody is all sadface and stuff.

Then every F-35 (see what I did there?) in the world shows up, and they're each carrying a N2 mine SGE missile.  For a people that have an intense dislike of nukes, they sure seem free about throwing them (or something similar) about, don'tchathink?  In any case, off go the missiles and...

Jamie wants big boom.  As you can imagine, MegaCroooow! is destroyed, and while everybody is sad that Rei is turned into disassociated particulate matter with a high background radiation level, the threat to the world is over.  Eggs must be broken sometimes, and, well, let's face it: Hot Dark Girl Rei was trying to destroy the world for 10 of the past 12 episodes.  That kinda means she was the bad guy.  Gal.  Whatever.  You know what I mean.  The military men rejoice, as they are wont to do in anime, secure in the knowledge that their budget has just been passed for many, many years to come.

Oh look, a trope!  And a screenshot from a show other than Vividred Operation, but you didn't notice because it may as well be from the show I'm recapping.  Really, it's kinda blatant just how obviously they are in their "let's rip off Eva" stuff.  At least the lead character isn't all whiny and emo.

Okay, fine, at least the lead character isn't AS whiny and emo.  Happy now?  It's okay, because Gendo Plushyferret is all doomsayer and stuff... the world is going to end, because I built the Phlebotinum Engine and it's all my fault and there's nothing anybody can do about it.

Fed up, Team Aquos leaves to get away from his whining, and I don't blame them one bit.  Damn stuffed animal needs to take a valium or something, mellow out a touch.  Now that's a sentence I never thought I'd type.  Oh, who am I kidding, it doesn't surprise me at all... it's that sort of show, and my mind goes afield at times like these.  And why the HELL is my upstairs neighbor vacuuming her apartment at 930pm, every night, for a half-hour each night?  Is she trying to drive me insane?  Just trying to suck up ever atom of dust that's ever existed?  Or does she shed her skin in tiny flakes and she's trying to clean up after herself?  What is the damn point?!?!?!?!

While I've been complaining about the people I share my apartment complex with, MegaCroooow! has made it to the Phlebotinum Engine, and sure 'nuff, the two types of energy just don't mix.  Except the Phlebotinum Engine is the only one that's being affected.  Wait, how the heck does THAT work?  Unless MegaCroooow! is more powerful than Gendo Plushyferret's magic machine, in which case let's just hook jumpercables to its tailfeathers.  In any case, suddenly the power coming from the Phlebotinum Engine is down to 10%, and the whole world begins to go dark.  Oh, and by the way, remember all the way back to Episode 01, where it was pointed out that everything was powered by the Engine?  That includes fighters, destroyers, aircraft carriers, the whole shebang.  Oh, and the Vivid suits, too.  Team Aquos doesn't even make it to the Phlebotinum Engine before they are drained of power.  They fall from the sky, just normal girls wearing gaudy outfits when they smack into the ocean.  They precede the destruction of Earth by a few minutes.

OR... they still have power, but even they acknowledge that fact won't stay true for long.  They have to end this fast, and to do that, it's time to bring out the big guns!  Or Himawari, which is the same thing in comparison to the other three, if you know what I mean and I think you do, except they're in middle school.

Some Vivid Collider action puts a hurtin' on MegaCroooow!, but immediately afterwards, Himawari's suit powers down and she falls from the sky like a sack o' potatoes.

Please note that she's falling from well above the height of some clouds.  That's gonna sting when she backflops into the ocean.  As in, every bone in her body will be turned to powder, sting.  As she falls, she says it's Wakaba's turn.  Oh, that's how it's gonna go, huh?

Vividgreen does a number on the already-damaged MegaCroooow! with her big sword, and then she too takes the dive from way up high.

Slightly less gracefully than Himawari, it must be said.  So less graceful than a sack of potatoes.  That's not very good at all.  That's plummeting sack of wet cement territory, and that's really unpleasant when it hits the ground.  It's Aoi's turn now.

A slightly psychotic looking Vividblue has entered the arena, and she lays the hammer down on MegaCroooow!.  See what I did there?  She "lays the hammer down", and Vividblue's weapon is a hammer.  I are komeedy geenyus! 

And thus does Aoi being her fall back to Mother Earth.  She tells RHF to go save Rei, and I'd like to point out that this is RHF's best friend ever plummeting to her death, and what does she do?  She turns her back on the falling friend and goes after the girl that's been trying to end the world, the girl she's only known for a few weeks.  That just ain't right, but so what else is new?  A quick dive gets her inside MegaCroooow!, and she finds Hot Dark Girl Rei!  Hooray!

"The unexamined life is not worth living."  Socrates said that.  I guess their lives are worth living, huh?  As their hands touch, fingers intertwining, their pulses raced.  Faint smiles cross their lips, lips that look so inviting... wait, no, sorry.  As their hands touch, a gigantic pillar of light explodes out of MegaCroooow!

But we're not ripping off Evangelion, no no no!

Watching in awe and wonderment are the descended members of Team Aquos.  But... how... fall... splat... I SAW THEM FALL!  I'm not even going to try to understand this anymore.  Why should I, when the Production Staff won't?  Bah!  And then comes the moment we've all been waiting for...

 ...aw, darnit.  I dunno 'bout y'all, but I was hopin' for VividBlack.  Instead we get VividR... oh.  HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!  VIVIDRED!  It's the VividRed Operation!  Hoo-hoo-hoo-haaa!!!  Oh, well done, Production Staff.  Well done.  *facepalm*  There is one difference though.  To trigger the change to VividBlue, VividGreen or VividYellow, the girls plant a kiss on RHF's forehead.  For VividRed, though, RHF kissed Rei's forehead.  I'm sure that means something.

The final fight is... anticlimactic to say the least.  It's literally a one-punch KO, with MegaCroooow! goin' all 'splodey.  The world is saved!

The power of friendship has saved the world... again.  There is great happiness and all is right with everybody, even though RHF left her three besties to die.  I'm sorry, perhaps I'm petty this way, but if a good friend of mine left me to plummet to my inevitable death, I don't think I'd forgive him or her quite so quickly as these three.  And then the Alones return.

No, really.  This is the Alone that caused the big accident in the Phlebotinum Engine those many years ago, and it's here to recreate Rei's world for her.  Yay!  But she's got to leave her new friends.  Boo!  But she leaves her kickarse scarf behind for RHF!  Meh.  She walks through the door, happy and hopefully into a better series.

But she leaves us in this one.  Everybody says maybe they'll see her again, but nobody believes it.  We see a series of quick still shots, showing us what happens afterwards as the credits roll overtop... most importantly, Gendo Plushyferret figures out how to get back into his real body.  No, no explanation as to how.  What, you expect that sort of logic from THIS series?  Anyway, everybody is happy, life goes on for some amount of time, but the girls are all still in school so it can't be that much, when RHF is out delivering papers one morning.  And then...

The End.

About as good an ending to a "meh" show as we could have hoped.  Felt a little rushed, though.  How the hell did they survive the fall???

So that's it for Vividred Operation.  I don't know if it'll be licensed, but man, it just wasn't all that good.  Hope you enjoyed the recaps though!

Next show: more zombies!

Posted by: Wonderduck at 11:27 PM | Comments (6) | Add Comment
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1 We're on to you, Duck. You're just covering up that ALL you birds are full of the red and the glowy stuff. It's just a conspiracy of the worldwide mallard menace!

Semi-seriously, I think I enjoyed your recaps more than I would have enjoyed the show. Having been exposed to mind-altering dosages of the original Eva, I have time only for GOOD homages, not meh ones...

Posted by: AvatarADV at April 19, 2013 12:17 AM (pWQz4)

2 I'm a bit dense (and have only watched Evangelion Original Flavor through once) so I didn't pick up on the Eva-ness of ViviDred until late. But man oh man, THIS episode. Subtlety, guys, SUBTLETY.

At any rate: Fun writeup, man.

Posted by: GreyDuck at April 19, 2013 07:17 AM (xbP2x)

3 How the hell did they survive the fall???

Bumbles bounce.

Posted by: Mitch H. at April 19, 2013 08:36 AM (jwKxK)

4 Man, AvatarADV, I don't know if I'd want to be exposed to that much Evangelion... and I bought all the VHS as they released.

Posted by: Tom Tjarks at April 19, 2013 10:04 AM (T5fuR)

5 They fell slowly,  Failsafe system.

Himawari just took advantage of her natural Floatation devices to not drown, and uh, well, if you've ever TIMED the amount of time it takes to deliver a punch from Orbit, she had enough time to swim ashore AND naturally air-dry.

Posted by: Mauser at April 19, 2013 02:47 PM (cZPoz)

6 And the catgirls are keeling over in droves!

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at April 19, 2013 08:12 PM (+rSRq)

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