Top 5 Favorite Female Mecha Pilots

I worked in a second Gundam pick. I am sneaky that way.

I just finished the second season of Lagrange: The Flower of Rin-ne, a mecha show were the primary three pilots were all female. While Lagrange was not the best mecha show I have ever seen it was very enjoyable and did make me start thinking about female mecha pilots in general. The trio of female Aestivalis pilots in Martian Successor Nadesico have also started the gears turning in my head. So in turn instead of doing a lengthy rumination on the place of female pilots in mecha, which my thoughts are not entirely clear on, I thought I would do a simple top 5 list for now. Perhaps when my overall feelings on the subject are more settled I will do something with Narutaki on the more intricate topic.

As always for these lists I made a few rules for myself. Just as a note I went out of my way to only pick one character from any one series. While Gundam has quiet a few great female pilots it also has an equal amount of horrible ones. But I did not want Gundam to dominate the list so I narrowed it down to a single pick. Also I have not seen every mecha show ever made so don’t hate me because say Jun Hono or your favorite girl from Aquarion Evol is not on the list. And last but not least these are my favorite pilots not the best female mecha pilots of all time. You can argue who is a better pilot or character until your blue in the face. This is not a definitive ranking but a purely subjective list.

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Ongoing Investigations: Case #086

Detective Conan: Countdown to Heaven (movie 5) is the first to involve the Black Organization. I always enjoy their appearances and they add a level of danger so it’s a nice addition to this very tense film. This is also the first film that actually requires you to see some previous amount of Conan to fully grasp it, it ties into the first film. And actually if you haven’t seen the first movie I think it takes away some of speculation on who is the culprit. This time around a new hi-rise and hotel is about to open, but before it does one of the contributors is murdered in the new hotel section. Subsequent people involved with the new building lose their lives as well and it all culminates at the opening party where chaos ensues as the power goes out which is only the beginning. How the Black Organization fits in Conan is determined to figure out. I really liked this movie, but I almost always find when the Black Organization is involved things are more complicated and the outcome is more unknown. The killer was hard to determine plus the little details to the case were well put together. As always the ending sequence is pretty much amazing, though even more tense because of the kids’ involvement. I would rank this one high for the movies!

hisuiconHaving gone back and done things in the proper order we were finally able to watch the fifth Detective Conan movie. While this seems to be a “normal” Detective Conan murder mystery going on, the shadowy Black Organization also seems to have a hand in the proceedings. In a way this is like two separate Conan stories in one movie. There is the very standard but solid murder mystery like you expect and then a high tension Black Organization episode as well. Conan and the viewers know that the plots are somehow connected but how they are connected is just as much a mystery as everything else. But everything comes together in the end quite nicely with both stories being good and crisscrossing without tripping over each other. As with most Conan movies the action sequences at the end are nicely done and benefit from the theatrical budget. Since the movies have been mostly filler it’s easy to make them disposable but I feel this movie gave you the impression of having some weight to it while not disturbing the main storyline. You could watch Countdown to Heaven without seeing The Timebombed Skyscraper but you have to watch this one after the first movie because it gives away the solution to the first film.

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Ongoing Investigations: Case #038

Caught up with the English release of the D.Gray Man by reading books nine through twelve. We get fully into the new arc which includes a big transformation for Allen. This also starts really dealing with who the Noah and the Arc are. The intensity seems to have kicked up which didn’t seem possible! There are some major battles with some major deaths. The art has fully evolved and it’s striking and well done. It feels like I have an affinity for shonen fighting that doesn’t get as much attention and this is one of those titles that gets overshadowed.

Since Narutaki and I are trying out a three month subscription to Crunchyroll, I decided to take a test drive a few series. The first series was Gintama. Gintama always interested me just for its odd premise. A comedy series set in a Edo era Japan that has been visited by aliens and forcefully made to open up to these invaders echoing actual Japanese history. Being set in this period can only mean one thing: Shinsengumi. The Shinsengumi are not main characters but they seem rather important to the overall plot. Gintoki Sakata, Shinpachi Shimura, and Kagura take odd jobs but otherwise live in poverty. The first two episode drop you right into the action with the main cast already acquainted which threw me off. However, It works well for an episodic comedy like Gintama. It is a quirky and amusing but never really made me laugh out loud. I like Kagura because she is so delightfully horrible but rarely malicious. Unfortunately, she happens to be one of those “lets make fun of the Chinese” characters the Japanese love. Can’t say I want to rush out and watch more but I would watch it at say an anime club or with a friend.

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