Episode Review: Muv-Luv Alternative ep 13 – Wings of a new Dawn

From now on, you are a Surface Pilot
After one full year, Muv-Luv Alternative the animation has returned with a massive bang! The reunion of Jam Project and Minami Kuribayashi – the OG duo of Muv-Luv 16 years ago shook the fanbase. Furthermore, they come with a brand new epic OP that fill us all with a heroic warcry! Although the first episode doesn’t have any crazy fights, it is still an emotional and awesome episode to start the season.

Firstly, we opened up with a scene that will definitely feel nostalgic to VN readers: Takeru in his bed, greeted by a barely-clothed Meiya, then Sumika storm his room for his wake-up call. All this was present in his old world, that was how Takeru’s life was supposed to be. We get more glimpse of Takeru’s life prior to the whole Betaverse thing. This is a pretty important part that I think should be done (Extra) as an OVA before the Altnime aired last year.

And then we come to the graduation ceremony, which is an actual ceremony and not just an epilogue stitched onto the end of ep 12 last year. This ceremony feel like a proper military event with all the formality and prestige that comes with it. Although it’s just a promotion for 6 merely cadets, it was attended by a lot of powerful people! There are some amazing fanservice such as Ms. Kyouzuka which is a very nice touch for the existing fans of the PX goddess.

Norio Wakamoto’s performance here isn’t as deep and grand as the original, mostly due to age I guess, but he still carry the dignity of a commander and the [redacted] of Britannia. The atmosphere of the ceremony was really well done, along with the participation of many big wig figure that the original Visual Novel didn’t have helped elevating the scene. Along with Yuuhi’s letter, this is pretty much a perfect promotion ceremony. And with this, Takeru and the rest of 207 Flight has become official Eishi – they are now qualified to stand on the battlefield. Being commissioned has been what the entire team were fighting for and their earnest wish, however, this isn’t a blessing in anyway. This brings us to the finale of the episode.

Now that the squad is commissioned, the reality hit them that Marimo will no longer be by their side. She will not be able to protect them like she did during the Coup, which was a big source of reassurance during live combat for the inexperienced team. Now, they will join the frontline and fight alongside other Surface Pilots. Marimo was also pretty nonchalant about the whole thing, wondering if it’s too early for the fledglings. This really helps giving Marimo some moments and development. In the original VN, she got a lot of development prior to this point in the anime even, but the anime has cut out most of them and not much was left in aside from the “strict but goodhearted instructor” personality. In the VN, she was a nurturing and caring mother figure while also being a demon instructor from hell. Her speaking demeanor contrast with her behavior behind the official military eyes give her a kind of depth the anime couldn’t. But alas, it is what it is.

Overall, this was a very well done episode to cap off season 1 with a proper “reward” for the team, as well as setting up future events with the “final” trip to Takeru’s home world and the graduation. The next few episodes will be what the VN fans dread the most, and the unsuspecting anime-onlies’ reaction will be delicious.

Other Episode Review: