14
Mar
09

Rideback Episodes 6-9 [Orange Farm Archive]

Hey guys, sorry about the lack of Rideback posting. Here’s my catch-up post as an apology! Maybe I’ll post about Gundam 00 once or twice for my predictions on who’s going to die by the end of the series, or ranting about that zomg plot twist that just occurred.

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Rideback fanboy is back~

Episode 6

The first half of the episode pretty much involves the day being the anniversary of Rin’s parents’ death(or perhaps just her mother’s), as everyone has a break from school for a while.

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Kenji fails to show up to Rin and her grandmother’s grave visitation. At first you’d think ‘poor kid’, but… Back at their house, her grandmother, proving quite insightful, asks Rin if anything’s been going on at school. Rin doesn’t say straight out she got into Ridebacks, but does say she joined a circle. The grandmother is happy to hear she’s doing well.

In any case, Kenji’s absence prompts her to go into his room, where she discovers a bookshelf full of Rideback magazines and encyclopedias, as well as a poster of the “mysterious Rideback girl” on the wall.

I laughed at that picture being on his wall. I am a terrible person.

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The two reporters have also figured out who the “mysterious Rideback girl” is, and Kei goes out on a whim to investigate. Meanwhile, Rin takes a walk down the coastal highway with Shouko and attempts to get her spirits back up, but Shouko has apparently gotten over her fear of crowded places already.

Anyways, we do finally figure out what Kenji’s been up to. Apparently some guy got a few Ridebacks off of the black market and gave them to some thugs, one of which happens to be Kenji himself. Kenji is skeptical of the whole deal, and even figures out that these machines were stolen before they even left the factory. I wouldn’t be suprised if this gang had something to do with the terrorists.

So anyway, they go out on their joyride as Kei starts harassing Rin, and of course, Rin sees them go by, and catches sight of Kenji in one of the Ridebacks. They’re having a jolly old time, smashing windshields and throwing smoke bombs at police officers. Who didn’t do that kind of thing as kids?

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Things take a turn for the worse, though, when the GGP brings out their White Ridebacks to lay the smackdown on the gangsters. And by that I mean, they actually freaking KILLED the guy who raised his hands in surrender. Kenji realizes what he’s gotten himself into and desperately tries to escape, but the GGP isn’t showing any mercy.

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Rin panicks, and as Kenji is being held by one of the Ridebacks, she hijacks a crashed one and single-handedly defeats the two of them. It was pretty awesome until the helicopter arrived. Oh, and the normal Japanese police force has her blocked into the road, too, leaving us with a cliffhanger.

Other than the story events, a couple things are mentioned. First is the police force’s general dislike of the GGP’s methods. Everyone is worried about the police force becoming militarized, meaning it’s pointing to a possible implementation of martial law. And for what? A few terrorists. And as an unimportant side note, Tenshirou is obviously still worried about Rin. Actually, one of the thugs had the *exact* same eyes as him. Is he related by blood to a terrorist?

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Also, Romanov obviously knows Kiefer – the dude with the white hair that was with the terrorists. They analyzed what data they got and concluded he is of European descent and most likely has professional training in this sort of thing.

Episode 7

So, in the end, Kenji and Rin were both arrested and thrown in the slammer. Kenji’s up for the murder of a citizen – yes, they’re accusing him of killing that guy who got smacked off of his RideBack by one of the GGP. Rin is meanwhile in trouble for injuring that one guy when she was laying the beat-down on the white RideBacks.

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I dunno, I’ve never heard of this method of torture before. Needless to say, I would *not* want to be a victim to that. Eventually, Kenji folds, and agrees to confess that he was the killer.

While Rin spends most of the episode in a trance, the club tries to continue its normal activities, but they’re all worried. Suzuri is determined to become a better rider, but it’s not going well. Shouko and Haruki also have a moment.

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More interestingly, Tamayo finally pops the question everyone’s been wanting to ask – who exactly is Tenshirou?

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Over at the GGP, whilst plotting their toy “takeover” plans, Kataoka is getting angry with the GGP for ignoring their position as the *actual* police force for the country. Romanov reminds him to remember his position, but it seems like more dissent towards the GGP is growing within the police.

Back in jail, Rin and Kenji’s grandmother visits Rin – she believes in them no matter what. All this really makes you feel bad for Kenji. He was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and the thugs took advantage of his innocence. Anyway, later, Rin is thinking back. She can’t blame herself for wanting to save Kenji, and her thoughts turn to her mom. There was a cool line here, too. “Stop dancing and answer me.” Hmm… That’s an interesting little point there. She also has a dream of Keifer saying she was chosen to fight by Fuego.

On the news, they’re obviously catching on to the fact that the GGP is planning to rule by military force. How will the citizens react to this, I wonder? Shouko and Haruki are shown together again, too. Anyway, the interesting thing about all this broadcasting is that no one has actually revealed Rin’s name. I’m seriously wondering why. Maybe someone related to her was involved in something big? Who knows.

Tenshirou goes to a dump and pulls open a big storage container – inside which is Fuego. I knew he hadn’t actually taken it apart! (Well, everyone knew it, but whatever.) Tamayo had followed him, and Tenshirou tosses her the key and leaves.

Finally, as an actual answer to Tamayo’s earlier question, Tenshirou almost hijacks a car with a couple of high-ranking-looking dudes in it and tells the one to give Romanov a warning – that the Goblin is back in business. Okay, maybe it wasn’t an answer, but Romanov obviously does know who he is.

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Romanov, on the other hand, decides to ignore the threat, saying the the hero named Goblin is dead already…

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The last part of the episode involves the armored vehicle Rin is being transported in being completely overtaken by terrorists. She’s captured and brought back to base… wherever that might be. It’s broadcasted all over the place, and we get yet another scene of Shouko and Haruki hanging out. Anyway, now everyone is seriously worried. We also get a name for the anti-GGP faction – the BMA. More acronyms. Some terrorists come to take Tenshirou away to their BMA base, too. Apparently he is now going to be used as a scapegoat to call Rin out or something.

Finally, Rin wakes up – assumedly in the BMA base – and who is there but Keifer?

Episode 8

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Of course Rin recognizes him – or at least his voice – from the terrorist incident in the first story arc. She claims she was only doing crazy stuff like that to save someone, but Keifer claims that she is a liar, and further says that she changed her goals midway through everything. Hmm…

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So now we finally get some important backstory details. Apparently, the ‘world government’ that we learned about before the first episode started made some enemies, one of them being the GGP. Bet you didn’t see this coming. It turns out Tenshirou and Keifer are both old squad members of the RideBack platoon Romanov led against the government. It also turns out that neither of them really liked the guy anyway. The battle happened ten years ago and took the government by storm. Somehow no one stood a chance against the RideBacks. >_> Afterwards, a few of the soldiers were executed for disgracing the GGP during the battle, or something weird like that.

At the BMA base, they’re planning on luring the GGP to blow them all up in a trap. As expected, things don’t go so well for the GGP right off the bat.

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Having figured all this out, Kei reveals what she knows to Tamayo, and they manage to strike a deal to help out Rin and Kenji. Kei eventually gives Kataoka two photographs – one of the RideBack platoon, and one of a guy I don’t know who he is.

At the terrorist’s base, Keifer and Rin have a little RideBack race and then do some cool moves and flips and stuff. And we all know the fountain maneuver at the end was just a euphemism for sex anyway, so it’s cool.

Keifer doesn’t seem like the cold, emotionless guy we all thought he was, anyway. I hope there’s another side to him; characters like that tend to be a little cliched. Their run is cut short by word that the GGP has arrived at their hideout, and a battle begins. Keifer tells Rin to wait until ‘he’ comes – ‘he’, of course, being Tenshirou himself, who eventually arrives and bails Rin out.

Keifer also manages to get rid of who appears to be a direct subordinate of Romanov’s in a high-speed forest chase resembling that of the scene in Return of the Jedi. *That* manages to piss Romanov off.

Episode 9

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As the battle rages, Rin confronts Tenshirou as to his true identity. He was the one who had originally made the Fuego type RideBacks, and probably the one who made the ones for the terrorists as well. Tenshirou asks how she can believe Keifer, but Rin thinks he was telling her the truth. Tenshirou regrets making Fuego at all.

Oh, and that guy Keifer killed isn’t actually dead, just in the hospital. Drat. Romanov decides to take the initiative and declare an emergency for the terrorist problem. He won’t hear any of his, uh, “revealing” subordinate’s caution. He doesn’t care about the emotions of the people he’s trying to protect. That pretty much cements his role in the story as far as I’m concerned. One of the things he announces, though, is that RideBacks will no longer be legal to use by anyone outside of the police and the GGP. This quickly gives rise to protests, even in other countries.

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Tenshirou, meanwhile, leaves Rin with Tamayo for the time being to go join the BMA. And then Rin reflects on the blazing forest being a “beautiful scene” despite the loss of plant life. I’m beginning to think there is some seriously crazed up shit going on in her head. They also manage to contact the club members to reassure everyone of Rin’s safety.

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Meanwhile they fish, and Rin drops the bomb. She’s giving up the whole RideBack business. Tamayo is surprised. Apparently everything Rin was thinking about Fuego being a good friend to her was actually her lying to herself – the only thing she really thought of Fuego was about how great it was to have her limbs “back”.

God damn. This is how character development is supposed to go, people.

Tamayo won’t have it because their score isn’t settled yet, then asks if she plans on returning to being a ballerina. Rin doesn’t really know for sure at the moment. We also learn a little about Tamayo – apparently her dad slept around quite a bit, but he was rich and gave Tamayo whatever she wanted. She asked for the RB-Z as a joke, but he got it for her anyway. Oh, remember that old dude in the hospital? Their family tree should be clear by now, but that old guy is Kataoka and Tamayo’s father. Yes, they’re brother and sister, if the next scene doesn’t make it obvious. Tamayo doesn’t think too much of him, apparently. They didn’t have a good relationship.

Meanwhile Kei is still trying to coax some cooperation out of Kataoka. After their conversation, he calls Tamayo and insists that she call their father to talk, because of all the stuff that’s been going on. Guy reporter arrives to bring her somewhere after that.

At the club, they’re debating what to do. Shouko doesn’t want to be involved anymore, but for Haruki, RideBacks are too important to give up without a fight. They – or at least him and Suzuri – decide to join up with a college-kid protest that’s being planned.

Finally, Tamayo gives her dad a call. It was quite an emotional scene, too. Even through all the contempt Tamayo showed for him, she’s still his daughter, and he loves her and is willing to do what he can to help. Rin manages to walk in on the conversation as Tamayo is about to burst into tears, so she retreats into the garage where Fuego is… where she says good-bye once-and-for-all. (Yeah, right.)

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I’m kind of concerned about what’s going to happen at the protest. Hell, you would be too if you saw Romanov’s face when the back of that truck opened up.

He will eat your children

The planned protests hit the news pretty quickly, but Kataoka knows that they’re just giving the GGP an excuse… Leave it to college kids to jump right into this kind of stuff. Right before Suzuri and Haruki go off to protest, Akira arrives and gives them a little video chip of Rin assuring them that she’s alright. They also get some “cocktail” (meaning oil gotten from questionable sources – probably Tamayo’s dad at work) and a couple of other things from Tamayo.

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Well, things should get interesting very, very soon. Tamayo and Rin are bound to be driven out of there soon, Romanov has gotten some new toys, and the club members are going off to protest. I, for one, can’t wait for the next episode. Also, this is a concern in every series, but I hope Rin doesn’t take too long to get back on that motorcycle. The obligatory main character angst period should never take more than one or two episodes.

See everyone next time!

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