Aldnoah.Zero – Episode 3: The Children’s Echelon

What kind of regrets will I have in that moment?” – Inaho Kaizuka

Synopsis: The Earth Forces are in full retreat after the devastating attack from the Martian Kataphrakts. Inaho and his friends are hunkered down in a local school, preparing a counter attack.


 Just a little side note before we dive in… There are what, seven billion people on Earth? How many of those people are scientists? Thinkers? How many can solve a rubix cube or recite pi to thirty digits? And yet no one in this 7 billion could figure out the Martian Kataphrakts weakness? Apparently, on this alternate Earth, only one person on the entire planet is capable of performing competent analysis of the enemy and that person just so happens to be a Japanese teenager… I mean, what have these people been doing for 15 years? When someone attacks you with bigger, better weapons you don’t just sit there, pretend as though nothing has happened and fail to prepare for the inevitable second assault! You analyse and adapt: how did they attack you? What with? How can you counter that attack? Sure, they developed their KG-7 Areion to combat the Kataphrakts, but they must have known it wasn’t enough? Maybe I’m being ignorant: perhaps over in America another teenager figured out the exact same thing and the prism through which I viewed this episode didn’t allow me to see the full-scale of Earth’s counter attack. Then again, you have to wonder how ignorant Earth’s soldiers are not to notice spy satellites floating about in the sky…

 But I digress.

Aldnoah Zero Episode 3 Image 0014

 Episode 3 of Aldnoah Zero depicted Inaho, Calm and Inko’s counter attack in response to the death of Okisuke Mikuni an episode prior. Inaho’s deduction culminates with the realization that the Light of Aldnoah is “A barrier that absorbs anything that touches it: matter, light sound radio waves, everything.” Thus, Trillram is ‘blind’ to the situation outside. Or, at least, he would be were it not for the spy satellites providing images from above. This leads Inaho to devise an attack involving the Kataphrakts submersion in an attempt to gauge where its structural weaknesses lay, other than beneath it’s feet. Inaho is proving himself to be somewhat of a tactician, staying behind at the back to observe and analyse like a true Zero disciple. Naturally, it was somewhat predictable that Inaho would figure out a way to fight back against an enemy infinitely stronger than them (until it’s submerged in water where it apparently becomes that grown adult at the swimming pool wearing arm bands and woggle (apparently named a ‘pool noodle’ everywhere other than the UK), although I have to admit I’m a bit surprised by the lack of death… Oo, my impish side is showing…

 In another news, in an attempt to quash my earlier confusion in episode 2, Princess Asseylum Vers Allusia is almost certainly alive (even though her double is dead, something she seemingly has shown no remorse for)! And, she’s a magical girl… Plot twist? The return of the princess has almost certainly thrown a spanner in the works for Vers and their armies, she being the catalyst and – I assume – the cure. I don’t know enough about Vers and the nature of what was discovered on the planet to begin speculating as to what exactly the Princesses powers are and what she can do, but we can postulate that the Light of Aldnoah and her own powers aren’t entirely un-similar. I’d say that she might provide Earth with their own ‘secret weapon’ (she being the weapon herself), but I don’t see her fighting in the near future, especially seeing how she could barely figure out how to figure her weapon in episode 3 itself. Slight tangent here, but I thought it was hilarious how Asseylum and Rayet sat next to each other, especially considering how Rayet was involved in Asseylum’s pseudo-assasination. Just a lil’ tidbit.

Aldnoah Zero Episode 3 Image 0019

 The other important event of the episode was Slaine’s decision to murder Trillram in retaliation for Ver’s (or, at least, one faction within Ver’s) attempt to use the Princess as a means to an Earth like end. From here on out I see Slaine joining our ‘main group’ via the Princess and her newly formed ties to the team. Slaine has the furthest to grow out of all our main cast, he still not really knowing who he is or where he stands when it comes to Earth and Vers. Now that Slaine is no longer confined by the slave-like constraints of his former life he has the space to grow and develop his own stance on the world, not simply the one imposed on him. He’s almost certainly going to have to fight for that freedom however, and this is where, I assume, most of the growing will be done.

 Ultimately, Aldnoah Zero has proven once and for all that it’s a mecha show of grand proportions. To enjoy it fully however, slight oversights must be disregarded: for example, is Rayet even old enough to know how to drive? If not, how did she learnt to drive so quickly? Just saying… Another small gripe I had about this episode was how the mech’s themselves were animated. When running, they were a bit clunky in a way that made it seem as though they were floating before coming down hard against the ground in a way that seemed wholly unnatural. Just saying…


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5 Responses

  1. mecha_geek says:

    First of all, it’s been 15 years sice the last time the martians attacked: and throughout that time their tech must have developed and how can the terrans get intel from Mars? Secondly it’s implied each kataphract is different, so maybe trillam’s is the only one to use those cameras. plus even if scientists could figure out is weaknesses, there’s a jamming field over the area: how will they get the info across to our heroes?. Marito mentions that the entire northern area of the city is being jammed. Plus, in japan, the soldiers fought the kataphract on the ground and I am pretty sure, they didn’t have time to glance at the sky, plus the camera thingies are small and high in the sky so they’re hard to aim at: that’s why inaho uses a smoke screen because he won’t be able
    to destroy them by using firepower. As for rayet’s age and driving ability: she is the daughter of a frickin assasin, chances are he would’ve taught her how to drive, how to fight etc. Lastly, that comment about terran military not adapting to fight martians: here the psychology comes into play. The terrans believe they’re worthless insects and that nothing they do will help them defeat the Martian. So they give up. Thy continue to fight, but in spirit they’ve given up; people who believe they’ve lost don’t work to fight better. Plus, in the beginning, of ep. 2 the commander says humans were so prepared and all that and I think the humans got over confident and sice they staked everyting on the orange mecha when thry lost it hit their morale harder.

    • Chris says:

      Uh-huh. Firstly, thank you for clearing up the pieces of lore I misinterpreterd/confused. Secondly, I don’t think we know enough abour the Light of Aldnoah to make pan statesments pertaining to the fact that they’re either ‘all the same’ or that ‘they’re all different’ (although the latter is more likely due in part to the fact that the series needs to remain interesting for 24 episodes.) On the point of the spy satellites, they are clearly visable in some of the screenshots above. Take a look. On Rayet and learning how to drive, I got the distinct feeling her father didn’t want her involved in the assassination debacle (as most fathers who pine for a better future for their children tend to do) and thus, with no explicit allusion to this point, we are once again unable to jump to conclusions. Finally, I too understood that morale was low, and that’s also why I refrained from making pan-statements about the effectiveness of Earth’s fighting forces across the globe, of whom I hope not all are doing as terribly as Japan’s (although, to be fair, the situation doesn’t really allow for exemplary conduct.)

      – Chris.

  2. mecha_geek says:

    That’s one of the problem I have with A/Z if you’re using a tech like Aldnoah, EXPLAIN IT PROPERLY!
    Plus, I watched the episode again and you’re right, the camera are visible but I think they’re gonna provide a readon for why the military didn’t spot them earlier later on. As for Rayet, she came across as pretty capable to me from the start. Maybr, Inaho insturcted her on how to drive. Who knows? Thanks for your comment. Cleared up a few things for me, too.

  3. Lex says:

    >>even though her double is dead, something she seemingly has shown no remorse for

    If you look back at ep2 during the scene where she held Inaho down to ask him questions, she obviously sounded upset when she mentioned her double on top of the maid trying to comfort her with words.

  4. “There are what, seven billion people on Earth?” It’s shown briefly in the show but some fans found the image and blew it up, the Earth was PUMMELED during the Heaven’s Fall (like, enough to cause several planet-wide-extinction events) and so it’s lost at least half it’s population (China and India came out more or less fine but half the US is gone as is a lot the rest of the Americas and Australia, think some of Europe is missing and IIRC Africa bizarrely enough was also fine, guess they weren’t the side facing the moon). So there really is a lack of manpower/thinking power on Earth now, also I was under the impression that episodes 1-3 take course over only 2 or 3 days at most (especially since that ship hasn’t left port yet), given that the Earth’s response is fragmented and that our school kids are more or less the only ones to get away from the mech still alive it’s not inconceivable that no one else has had a chance to figure out how it works.

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