Full Metal Panic! Invisible Victory
by Theron Martin,
How would you rate episode 7 of
Full Metal Panic! Invisible Victory ?
With Kaname temporarily out of the picture, someone had to be the girl that Sousuke needs to rescue from the bad guys. Step on up, Nami!
You had to figure that this cliffhanger was coming at some point, especially after Sousuke got the group involved with dodgy illegal battles that would further attract Amalgam's attention. It wasn't a matter of if, but when a hostage situation would arise. This is one of the most difficult rescue missions Sousuke has encountered yet, since he can't just brute force his way through it. The episode definitely left me eager to see what happens next.
Nami's side of things is only one part of an eventful episode. The real surprise is the strong implication that Nami might be a Whispered that neither Mithril nor Amalgam knew about, since Kurama doesn't react as if he has any suspicions about her. This raises the question of whether or not Mr. Lemon, who is apparently affiliated with some third party, agreed to hang around and finance her team because he did have some inkling of her true nature. His agreement to bankroll the team always seemed a little too convenient to me. Whether he's there to keep an eye on Nami or not, he provides another element of intrigue to look forward to.
And of course there's the feature mecha battle. Things get difficult quickly when Sousuke finds himself up against an M9, which we know from previous series vastly outclasses a Savage. While it is cool to see sleek mecha battling and the Lambda Driver in action, this particular mecha battle may be my favorite kind, the sort where the victor isn't determined by superior firepower but by exploiting the strengths and weaknesses of the equipment in play. The enemy pilot turning out to be ex-Mithril (from the western branch rather than Sousuke's) is yet another interesting development; I strongly suspect that he's going to pop up again, and I wouldn't be surprised if he ends up being a source of unexpected help for Sousuke next episode.
This battle didn't achieve the intensity of some of the Sousuke/Gauron confrontations, perhaps because it didn't involve a despicable nemesis. However, it was still entertaining, with good flow and a respectable animation effort. This should tide us over until we can get back to the more high-powered conflicts.
Full Metal Panic! Invisible Victory is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.
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