30 July 2007

Code Geass Finale: The collapsing stage and Zero

Well, season 1 is finally concluded. The final 2-episode special carries on from where we left off months ago, and no one should be disappointed with the action and fight here.
There is also a new nice opening theme for this finale, too bad this wasn't used this for the 2nd opening.
The rest of the post has massive spoilers, so don't proceed any further if you haven't seen the episode.
Then again, we have season 2 coming, so we are still at half time. The dead can be revived and the survivor may not live for long :b

Episode 24: The collapsing stage (崩落のステージ)
New opening theme: 瞳ノ翼(Hitomi no tsubasa/Wing of the eye) by access

As the clock approaches midnight, Zero uses his trump card to open up the city's defenses. Having managed to geass a large number of the city's defense personnel to make the city's foundation collapses, the impenetrable city becomes very much an open game. In the skirmishes that ensue, Todo faces Cornelia for a battle that is not to be. Gilford managed to convince Cornelia to retreat and regroup for the time being.

Suzaku, whose unit was not deployed, can not bear to keep idle, punches Lloyd who keeps teasing him. He remembers how V.V. reveals the secret power of geass to him and describes how this changed Euphemia's personality. Having shocked Lloyd who is obviously not used to being punched by his subordinate, Suzaku takes off on Lancelot to find Zero for his revenge.

Meanwhile, the emperor is not present during this time of crisis, his eldest son who is in charge look grossly incompetent at this time of need. Too much partying, probably:b As his younger brother volunteers to go to the battle arena, it shows why it is beneficial to have a lot of sons and daughters!

While the Black Knight charging into the city, Zero decides to use the school as his base. This way, he can ensure Nanaly's safety. The student council members does not believe Zero's promise to keep them safe, but Karen took off her mask to reveal herself to provide more assurance on the promise.

Afterwards, Suzaku who rampages through the Black Knight's robots, meets Karen, who can not stop him. However, before Suzaku can finish off Karen, Zero appears.
Any hoped for a heated battle between the two is dashed as Zero freezes Lancelot in a trap, and faces Cornelia in a battle instead.
Meanwhile, Ougi who is in charge of the Black Knight's temporary headquarters is shot by Viretta, Britannia's female officer who has regained her memory.
Zero who is cornered in his fight against Cornelia, is suddenly saved when the geassed Dalton shot Cornelia from behind. Zero is happy that his forward thinking in geassing Dalton is bearing fruits after all, and thanks Dalton by finishing him off.
However, he will not remain happy when he find out about what happened to Nanaly, which has been found by V.V...The stage is indeed crumbling, but for whom?

Episode 25: Zero (ゼロ)

Cornelia, who is still alive, was surprised to see Lelouch revealing his identity as Zero. After geassing Cornelia, Lelouch is still unable to find truth about the events that leads up to his mother's death years ago. Cornelia does not know anything aside from the fact that the guards are called by his mother herself.

The interrogation is interrupted when C.C urge Zero to hurry up, because she felt Nanaly is being taken away to an island. However, Orange-kun chooses exactly this time to make his long awaited re entrance to fight Zero once again.

After managing to shake the very impressive Orange-kun off, Zero rushes to the island where Nanaly is being held, at the cost of his Black Knights. Unable to communicate with Zero, the Black Knights is now having difficulty fending off Britannia's counter attack. Suzaku also managed to escape from the restraining field, with the help of Lloyd and Cecile.

As Zero and C.C. arrives at the island, they are shocked but images from the past. After seeing some of C.C.'s unpleasant pass and hearing C.C.'s reflection on her loneliness, Lelouch tells C.C. that she is no longer alone. They are now an accomplice, and if she is the Demon Queen, he will be the Demon King. How romantic :)

Before they can enter the cave on the island, Orange-kun who manages to catch up with them appears to fight once more. During the battle, C.C. convinces Lelouch to head to the cave alone to save Nanaly, while leaving Orange-kun for her.

In the cave, while figuring out how to get through the obstacle, Zero is confronted by Suzaku who shots his mask and reveal his identity.
Suzaku, who has been suspecting Zero's identity but never quite believe Lelouch is behind the mask, looks sad and angry. Karen, who also suddenly appears in the cave, could not believe what she is seeing.
After heated talks and more the ideology debates between Suzaku and Lelouch, the two bestfriend points gun at each other and a shot is heard....
During the ending song, C.C. is shown to sink to the bottom of the ocean in her frame with Orange-kun's frame....fate unknown.

Season 1 summary:
This is truly a well done season, the producers managed to maintain the pace is throughout the series, which is a real rarity. The only other recent anime in memory that can maintain this kind of pace/thrill for such a long stretch is Death Note, until it sags a bit when the conglomerate arc started. Great story, great pace, great songs.

Considering the secondary title of the first season, the title of the episode, and C.C's final words, is it possible that this is the last we see of Zero and/or C.C.? Maybe it's only the last of Zero, but not Lelouch nor C.C.?
There is so many possibilities that can be played out in the 2nd season, and I really hope they can maintain the quality of this first season. One obvious possibility to have the next season centers on a different main character, with Suzaku being one of the prime candidate. If Lelouch survives, he can have then a greater role in the end of the 2nd season to converge the stories.

However, if they keep with Lelouch as the main hero, after the seemingly unsuccessful rebellion, one can only wonder what will be the theme for next season.
It would be a really big gamble if they drop the popular Lelouch as the focus, so that is rather unlikely. Well, there is only a few months until we find out...

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