Captured by Ryuz, Tetsuro finds himself being made the offer of his life and weighing the challenges.
What They Say:
Continuing the plot, we find out that Ryuz is a depressed woman who was betrayed by the man she loved while she was transforming her body for him. Tetsuro sympathizes with her, but tells her, “I want to decide my future for myself.” Ryuz’s retort to those words is…
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The first two part storyline comes to a close for Galaxy Express 999 and it leaves me hoping that future stories will be a bit better, especially considering there are a few lined up in the next few episodes. The single episode stories after the series start were interesting enough but felt a bit rushed at times which had me hoping that they’d be able to do a bit more with a double length story. Sadly, they intriguing parts are left behind and we’re focused on a single “villainess” for the story which keeps it from feeling properly big enough. This would have been an ideal single episode story.
The introduction of the gravity well which claimed another Galaxy Express train was intriguing as was the revelation that time passes very different in there under the control of Ryuz. With the passengers opting to not take her offer, she ended up aging them several hundred years over the course of a couple of days, which is what Maetel and Tetsuro found when they arrived. After essentially being kidnapped by Ryuz and taken to her small world deep in the gravity well, Tetsuro is made the offer he’s wanted for quite some time and is hard pressed to refuse considering the way he feels Maetel abandoned him. With Maetel not even really saying anything once Ryuz had Tetsuro in her hands has stabbed at Tetsuro but there’s something more going on inside him as well. The memory of his first meeting with Maetel and the things she told him has stuck with him to this day.
Ryuz isn’t without some interesting moments, though it does come across as a bit forced. In her bid to get Tetsuro to stay, her offer of a mechanical body is done by describing what her life has been like before she came to this gravity well and small planet. Her time with her lover, the Baron Clock, and how he got her to take on a partial mechanical body herself which made her unique and special has a certain kind of love and softness to it, even if it is a touch creepy from our modern day social views. The way the Baron uses her though and manipulates her to his own desires becomes apparent and gives the psychological push needed to turn Ryuz to the way she is. And now she’s in the same position that the Baron was in a way except that it’s much darker and forceful, creepy, as she’s trying to take advantage of young Tetsuro.
I’m not quite sure what to make of this two part storyline because it feels like it’s like so many other shows in that it doesn’t really take advantage of the extra time to tell its story. It feels padded out and filled with more quiet exposition moments than anything else, particularly in the first part. This one does provide more time for Ryuz to give us her back story but it’s not something that really required as much time as it did. It does show us more growth for Tetsuro as he’s faced with an opportunity to leapfrog a lot of trouble and quite a few challenges, but I felt the whole thing could have been tightened up and a lot more enjoyable in different way. Plus, it had less Maetel and that’s never a good thing.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Sony PlayStation3 Blu-ray player via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.