Things take a turn for the strange in this fourth volume.
Writer/Artist: Tsutomu Nihei
What They Say
In a bid to remake the planet according to her design, Niarudi - Matriarch of the DRF - has unleashed the Reverse Morphic Polymer. This substance triggers a radical transformation of the earth, preparing it for "restoration." Meanwhile, Zoichi goes all out to recover Eon Green, and Fuyu learns more about what happened on Mars seven hundred years ago - secrets that shed light on the unbelievable metamorphosis about to take place!
At the start of the volume, we find Fuyu attempting to communicate with Narien inside his head, while his personality slowly begins to degrade. He quickly tells Fuyu of the history of the Niarudi, the drones, and the reverse morphic polymer. Shortly thereafter, a battle erupts between Narien, Niarudi, and the synthetic humans, hovering far above the planet in the darkness of space. During the process, the Earth becomes coated in the reverse morphic polymer, and strange terminology about the “recreator” is thrown around before a massive strand erupts from the planet and heroes find themselves in an unknown location in space, with Earth nowhere in sight.
Exploring the impossibly long strand they find themselves on, Zoichi and Fuyu soon discover an odd world of mechanized beast and landscape alike. It isn’t long before they run into DRF agents, yet this time they appear to be riding an odd, otherworldly machine and speaking in an incomprehensible language. Zoichi takes down the agents and in the process saves to machine-esque “human” siblings named Yaa and Buutsu. Fuyu begins to interrogate Yaa via a mental uplink, and discovers that the beings living here have no knowledge of the “Earth” or machines in the traditional sense, and firmly insist to be human despite their relatively mechanical forms. In order to get to the bottom of this confusing situation, Zoichi agrees to follow the siblings to the town of Jogaikoto, a settlement created by the DRF.
What is presented here seems intriguing, but unfortunately comes across as incredibly confusing as things currently stand. The concepts and terms here come fast and with little explanation, and unfortunately take up a good majority of the volume. However, what little the reader is likely to discern from what is given shows promise and has a very unique feel to it. It is likely that future volumes will help to clear up the mysteries present here, and hopefully use the unique set-up shown in this volume to its fullest. At present though, the mysteries of this volume do little but perplex, and force the frantic action of the last few volumes into the back seat in the process.