Joined: Sep 2015
Reinhard is very talented commander of the Galactic Empire. Because of his young age and his reckless plans, he has difficulty gaining the respect of the older military. However, he doesn't mind much because of his confident personality. We hear that even thought he won many battles many military legions have stopped following him. He is sure that if he keeps winning people will have to respect him. Some people begrudge him, thinking that he only achieved his position because of his noble birth.
Reinhard has an older sister and a loyal childhood friend Siegfried. Siegfried has promised the older sister to protect Reinhard.
Yang is a prodigious commander of the Free Planets Alliance. Even Reinhard has gained his respect from what he heard of his previous battles. Contrary to Reinhard, Yang doesn't occupy a high position in the military. Not being able to order everyone, he is limited to giving suggestions to the higher-ups. He also has a friend who respects him very much. This friend looks a him with a kind of respect that a student would have for a great teacher.
The Galactic Empire and the Free Planets Alliance have been in war for over 150 years. The episode starts when a battle is about to begin. Reinhard's fleet has a considerable numbers disadvantage, however they are in an advantageous position. But this is not obvious and only Yang and Reinhard himself can see this. The Free Planets Alliance is divided in three smaller fleets and is trying to surround Reinhard's fleet. Reinhard fights one fleet at the time, destroying two of them and leaving only Yang's fleet left.
I really like the scale of the battles, with tens of thousands of ships and that is literally takes hours for the battles to happen. The battlefield is so huge that they have a fancy dining room inside of it. This "old-futuristic" aesthetic really appeals to me. I like the huge and vast intergalactic empires with European buildings and the giant technologically advanced spaceships without robots or AI. The ship designs are also good, mostly because of the classic feeling that it has. The cell animation also helps a lot. Classical music has never been better matched with space battles.
Its note worthy the amount of unique characters and relationships that get quickly established this episode. There were a lot. So many so, that I was kind of glad when Yang's sempai died with one of the fleets that got destroyed--minus one characters to keep track. Well, but now there is his fiance... so I guess 1 for 1. And there were also a few shots drawing attention to certain characters, who will be significant in the future, but haven't had a single line yet.
I watched the first six episodes of this show a few years ago. I remember being really impressed with this first battle. (Mainly in comparison with start of the last battle between Lelouch and Schneizel in R2, which felt contrived, with the characters describing the strategic genius behind how they positioned their fleets, without the audience being able to make sense of the significance of their choices.) Upon re-watching this feels a lot less clever than I remember. It is, however, still pretty good. Its simple to follow what is happening and we can clearly see the motives behind the characters strategic choices--even thought they seemed too short-sighted and emotional for military personel at times.
The Japanese for this anime is difficult to follow for me at times. Having Japanese subtitles helps a lot and I would recommend for anyone considering watching this. I really like the way Reinhard speaks, how he changes between talking with Siegfried and talking with the older military personel. I like this older-sounding Japanese.
Modified by Abajur, Apr 13, 11:36 AM