Rewrite Episode 17: Earth-Saving Hunter
His name is Bond.
It’s begun. Welcome to Terra. It’s been almost three years since I first played Rewrite, and now a proper and hopefully well-executed adaptation of Terra will be airing for the next two months. If you told me exactly that all that time ago, I doubt I’d have believed you. I never really did have much hope to see either Moon or Terra animated, but here we are. The true route. I’m actually really enjoying it so far. This first episode had great pacing, and it accomplished a great deal. We had that brief teaser of Bond being deployed to the Middle East to fight terrorists for Guardian as a wake-up call and signal that Terra will be extremely different from a lot of what we’ve seen from Rewrite, and that was followed up by establishing Kotarou, Esaka and Kotori. All of whom will be major players throughout Terra. It also feels like the art style and animation has improved slightly. It wasn’t always noticeable, but some of the key frames were really nice, like that one close-up shot of loli Akane or the scene when Pero was first introduced.
I’m also super excited about the OP. It’s amazing. I honestly did expect it to be Psychic Lover, but we’ve had that played so many times now (near the late stages of the Kagari route as well as last episode when Sakuya appeared) that it’d lose its impact if it became the OP all of a sudden. I’ve also tended to associate it more with Moon over Terra, so having a fresh song works out just as well. Last Desire gets my blood boiling so fucking much. It’s so cool. Very typical of Tensho to direct an OP like that, full of Grisaia vibes and complete with Maon Kurosaki, but it’s everything I ever wanted in a Terra OP. I initially forgot that there might be a new OP, so that opening scene with Bond, Nishikujou and Imamiya got me so unimaginably hyped. Other than appreciating the small moments given to Jasmine and Luis, the most important thing to take away from that OP is Kotarou’s triple agent status. It’s hinted first when he points his gun at Imamiya, and then again when he’s seemingly working for both Gaia and Guardian at the same time. That precarious balance becomes very significant later on, and it’s right to highlight that from the very outset.
Bond was an edgy kid. That’s the second line of the copypasta, and it’s not wrong. I’d forgotten how edgy he was. Like damn, did he really have to kill that blood-sucking leech that way? He was edgy, bored and probably quite broken inside, no thanks to his parents and upbringing. Despite his superhuman abilities indicating an alignment towards Guardian, his personality is very Gaian. Ironically so. That question he shouted about wiping out humanity as an answer to global environmental destruction is pretty much what radical Martel (i.e. Gaia) adopts as its world view, as terrible as mainstream, public Martel might say it is. Kotarou hates himself, and I think he’s always hated himself. Athough this is never made explicit until Terra (or possibly Moon) you can piece together certain clues from the character routes. He talks about himself a little in Shizuru’s route (although it’s technically still part of the common route at that point) for example, and Kotori lets things slip during her route too. I think I’ve mentioned this before, but imagine how she must have felt throughout all this. She meets her neighbour, a sullen and angry teenager. She’s also kind of the same, and because of that they sort of, but not really, get along. He leaves to fight terrorists in a war, and she becomes a druid in the meantime after her parents die in a classic Key bus crash. He comes back and almost gets killed by the very thing all druids are supposed to protect. She saves him and he drastically changes into a happy, friendly person who hasn’t aged a day, and doesn’t remember her from probably before they were in middle school together. All whilst thinking he’s meant to be dead, and would actually die without her. It must have been terrible for her.
Terra Kotori is, of course, the real Kotori. I think she’s the cutest. I might even like her even more than normal, vanilla Kotori. I mean, she’s not soft at all, but there’s something super adorable in how thorny and bratty she is. Her constantly sullen expression, standoffish behaviour and Gao Gao Stegosaurus shirt just makes me want to hug her tight and never let go. She also makes the cutest movements, like during that moment when Kotarou handed her Pero in a bag and she jumped when the bag moved. It’s kind of sad knowing that she’s going to be in for a lot of pain from here on out. Perhaps not as much as during the character routes, as Kotarou won’t ever fall into a coma this time round, but she’s still not going to have a great time. I’m glad she’s here for Kotarou in this timeline, though. Not that either of them will ever know that any other timeline exists. Makes you wonder what happened to the versions of them that were on Moon, the ones which were the culmination of all their various selves from each of the alternate timelines. I guess they just dissipated after they were killed.
Esaka now knows that Kotarou is a superhuman, and once he’s recruited into Guardian and begins his transformation into Bond, the substance of Terra will truly begin. This episode is pretty much as comfy as it gets. It’ll be a wild ride from here on out.