High! This review on Plunderer Contains spoilers. If you have not seen the chapter, we recommend you do it and then go back to read the review.
Chapter 17: The Birth of Alcia
Chapter 18 of Plunderer he begins with class A observing how some of his classmates have disappeared. Jail, Lynn, Pele and Hina have told them that they will return to the future, 300 years ahead to wait for them. Unbelief is not absent, but they decide to make an effort to see their friends again. Meanwhile, Rihito has made his decision, and will not allow his subordinates to murder and feel the despair that he himself felt.
Time passes, and the "War of Waste" continues. The war that started to level the number of people with the available resources has turned Rihito into a totally different person. His companions cannot do anything about it, since he is their commander and orders them to always stay in the rear. Even Tokikaze and Sonohara have become "Aces" to help him, but that doesn't change the boy's mind.
At a deadlock in the war, Schmerman, Firenda and Alan decide to implement the plan to create Alcia. The inhumane actions that would allow this utopia to be created do not please Class A, and therefore oppose their former teachers. However, they cannot do anything against the tremendous strength of a deranged Rihito, who still obeys the orders of his superiors.
In this way, Rihito loses his precious companions at the end of the war. Twenty years later, after a long dream, Rihito and Nana deserted the army and toured Alcia for decades. Rihito has not been able to overcome everything that happened during the "War of Waste", and to the sadness of his partner, looking at her reminds him of all the pain. It only remains for the girl to wait for people who can save her beloved Nii-Nii.
School time has ended for class A, and now they will face what has been prepared for months. However, their commander has other plans. Thus, chapter 18 of Plunderer He tells us what happened in the 300 years that have passed since Rihito became an “Ace”. Fortunately for us as viewers, this period of time did not end up being ignored in the unfolding of the story as I had thought.
This episode has been loaded with a lot of information, which even answers many of the questions we had about the fantastic world that was shown to us in the first half of the series. The identities of the other "Legendary Aces" are revealed to us, their actions during the war, the origin of Sonohara's prosthesis and the beginning of Alcia, as well as their characteristics. All in the voice of Nana who recounts each event as a diary.
Speaking a bit on the technical side, I thought they did a very good job. The animation has lived up to the first episode, plus I liked the argumentative format quite a bit. A format that works as a flashack, perhaps from the perspective of Nana's memory, which reminds us that there are no anachronistic observers present.
The strongest beings
Since the last episode we saw how was the birth of the "Ace of Scintillating Beats", however, we know that it was not the only one. We already knew Sonohara, the "Ace of Persecution", and Nana, the "Ace of Knowledge", so we already intuited that there were more. This is how chapter 18 of Plunderer He introduces us to three more “Aces”, as well as the initiation of Sonohara itself.
Tokikaze, "Ace of Sudden Strikes," Doan, "Ace of Heavy Strikes, and Captain Alexandrov Grigorovich," Ace of Explosive Strikes, "are the aces revealed in this episode. All of them, together with Sonohara, underwent the operation and became "Ases" at the same time, although they did not suffer from the overexposure that Rihito had to undergo. This may make them weaker, but it would also distance them from the homicidal impulses of Schmerman's genes.
This turn of events reminds me of something Nana said when they were attacked by Sonohara. The girl said that Licht himself had mentioned to a girl in the group of "Aces" that he could never kill someone. Based on what has been revealed in this episode, neither Tokikaze nor Sonohara took a life during the war. They were Rihito's subordinates, and Rihito never allowed it, making the comment feel somewhat out of place.
Of course there were other "Aces" active during the war. Doan and Captain Alan were never Rihito's subordinates, so they had no obstacles to go out and fight. The class A situation reached such a point that even Sonohara's missing arm was cut by Rihito himself. At least I believed this was a wound caused by battles in war. I feel like Sonohara's presence is less epic now.
A utopia for the elect
A plan to create a utopia where humanity managed to survive. Of course, no one said that all humans would live, so Alcia represents the sacrifice of many for a few to survive. As we saw in chapter 18 of Plunderer, Alcia was created by the "Althing" using the original "Ballot". In this way, almost anything could be asked of that entity that came from outside.
First a floating continent was created, placed at such a height to keep out of the reach of the people below. Without resources, it would be difficult to start a flying device to get to Alcia. Second, the rules were set, where the "Count" that were imposed on each Alciano was intended to keep the number of people on the continent controlled. Of course now we see that "the abyss" is the outside world.
The last wish, to call it something, was an act of theft. Alcia is capable of stealing the few resources from the outside world to support her own citizens. An act that Tokikaze condemned, for being completely inhumane. Not only would the inhabitants of abroad see how a floating continent possesses the greatest strength that humanity has seen, but it will inspire fear because that great spectacle will rob them of what little they have to eat.
A truth that I did not expect to know so soon in the series. Now it is understood why it is not allowed to study the flight, since it would be a way to escape the illusion created by the "Althing". Knowing this, it could also mean that Hina's mother is still alive, and perhaps in the future she explains how she had one of the Original "Ballot" in her possession. Because the "Ballot" that Hina has is one of the originals, isn't it? Who is Hina's mother?
A love flavored with salt
Nana has been the narrator of chapter 18 of Plunderer. He told us about each event as it was presented, but there were also spaces where they showed us fragments of what appears to be a daily video of the woman. This is not mentioned in the episode, but these videos are in the memory that little Nana gave Jail, and in the manga she would see them using one of the school computers. They are discovered in the middle by Captain Alan, and are forced to delete the content.
As we have seen, the girl has suffered enough. She fell in love with Rihito as a child, waiting for centuries for the boy to recover from all the emotional wounds he suffered during the war. Unfortunately, the mere presence of Nana prevented Licht from overcoming all the pain she was enduring. Nana's face reminded her of everything she had done in the war. The woman would not be able to heal the heart of the person she loved.
So when Jail, Lynn, Pele and Hina made a big impression on Licht, he didn't hesitate to show them his own story. Those people who managed to get the Licht out of the past had the potential to heal his heart, so he trusted them with everything. As Nana herself says at the end of the episode, she just wanted them to know. We will see how the relationship between Licht and the travelers will develop now that he knows that they were those colleagues who came from the future.
Chapter 18 of Plunderer It has been an account of everything that happened during and after the "War of Waste". The 300 years that have passed were summed up in the 21 minutes of the episode, ending the arc of Licht's past that I really liked. I'm not sure how much events have differed regarding the manga, since I haven't read it, but for now the anime has left me satisfied.
Although the episode has revealed many things, it leaves others more unfinished. The destiny of Tokikaze and the others of class A is not fully confirmed, so they could appear later in the plot, mainly Tokikaze who was the one who received the operation of the "Ace". I must confess that I expected more classmates from A to undergo the operation, so that I could see them later. Anyway, how did you like chapter 18 of Plunderer?