Senki Zesshou Symphogear 12 – notes and the like
Not the best start you could imagine in an anime episode. The feeling of something ending is even further amplified by the ending song playing in the background.
Miku’s line (“I couldn’t even say goodbye to her!”) is a liberal translation, literally it would be “She left without saying goodbye… and we haven’t met since”, which sounds incredibly awkward. Hibiki’s line about how they can’t talk anymore refers to her idea, that people can understand each other by talking – remember the time when she fought Chris in the park?
Hibiki’s line when she goes berserk took me a while to figure out because she quite literally snarls it. Luckily she doesn’t “say” anything else while she’s in black mode. And Fine’s anatomy still confuses me… Where are her nipples if there are any at all?
Fine’s regeneration ability is simply creepy. She was pretty much cut in half! At least the Durandal shows up – apparently Fine uses it as an undepletable energy source for the Kadingir.
Tsubasa taking Hibiki’s hit head on may seem stupid, but first consider that a hit just like that tore Fine in half… Time to appreciate how tough Tsubasa is. Which reminds me, why is Hibiki attacking her, but not Fine now? She seemed quite hard set on butchering Fine, what happened then? Also, the name of the shadow bind technique that Tsubasa uses is Shadestitcher (影縫い kagenui), the same kagenui as the name of the exorcist from Kyoto in Nisemonogatari.
I really like the artwork of Tsubasa’s attacks. They feel so… Japanese. She also uses a new attack in this episode, Soaring Phoenix (炎鳥極翔斬 probably read enchou-kyoku-shouzan, lit. flame-bird’s great soaring slice), which is powerful enough to destroy the Kadingir as it is.
Seeing how the girls outside sacrifice themselves one after another outside, the anime girl questions their motive to fight. Are they fighting to die? Miku’s “answer” is a bit confusing – because she doesn’t say it. Her “Do you really not get it?” question, her determined look and her tears are the answer.
The explosion of the Kadingir with the red crosses flashing in the fireball reminds me a lot of Evangelion. Of course Fine is not happy about this development, and she takes out her frustration on Hibiki, who’s completely apathetic believing everyone and everything she loved is destroyed. It turns out that Fine is just typical woma— I mean, she was a priestess of God, who after a while developed feelings for Him. You know how Jesus Christ says “Love the Lord your God with all your heart” (Mt 22:37) – but I’m quite confident that he didn’t mean it in a romantic way (not to mention Jesus lived thousands of years after the Tower of Babel). To be honest, this explanation makes Fine look like a butthurt teenager girl who got rejected by her first crush. She mentions the “curse of balal” multiple times again.
Ogawa found some survivors in nearby shelters, among them the little girl that Hibiki saved back in the first episode. With a childish enthusiasm she urges them to cheer for Hibiki, so the girls and Ogawa embark on a journey to switch the school’s systems (what’s left of them anyway) back on, so that they could talk to Hibiki through the speakers.
The girls manage to power up the school systems, but the anime girl of course has to pull off a monologue to break that fourth wall. (Yes, they are still in an anime.) Most of her lines are simple, but once she uses a certain phrase that gave me quite a bit of trouble. The final script has that line as “If I’m not even as good as a fictional character, how can I call myself real?” I think. The original is 非実在性豊年にもなれやしない (hi-jitsuzai-seishounen ni mo nareya shinai), which literally translates to “I can’t even be a non-existent youth.” Non-existent youth (非実在性少年) is a legalese term used for characters in anime/manga who look, act or can be assumed to be underage. It got famous from a quite controversial bill of the Tokyo government that was (is) widely opposed. As far as I can understand, the word could be safely translated in this context as “fictional youth”.
Fine tells Hibiki that she has no more need for her, since she herself has merged with the Nehushtan armor already. She says the world doesn’t need another miraculous divine character. Here she uses a word (神霊長 shinreichou) that took me a while to figure out – actually I’m still not entirely sure if that’s the word she uses, but it makes sense. Under the ground, after powering up the school systems, the girls start to power up Hibiki as well, by singing the school anthem she loves so much. It’s really a catchy song… Here, have the Japanese lyrics (and sing along).
仰ぎ見よ太陽を aogi miyo taiyou wo
よろずの愛を奏で yorozu no ai wo kanade
朝な夕なに声高く asa na yuu na ni koe-dakaku
調べと共に強く生きよ shirabe to tomo ni tsuyoku ikiyo
遥かな未来の果て harukana mirai no hate
たとえ涙をしても tatoe namida wo shite mo
誉れ 胸を張る乙女よ homare mune wo haru otome yo
信ず夢を歌にして shinzu yume wo uta ni shite
The Sun rises as the girls sing, and with it Hibiki. She gets her sense of purpose and will to fight back from hearing that the girls are all right, singing for her, with her. Of course Fine has no idea why she can stand up again, and she’s badly confused. Poor girl.
Moments after Hibiki wakes up, so does Tsubasa and Chris. Chris handled that swan song quite well… I wonder what is their strength to fight – I doubt the girls’ singing would echo all the way to where they were lying unconscious.
The girls return with new, redesigned Symphogears. Fine is in big trouble.