Divergence Eve Misaki Chronicles Volume 1: Second Chances (DVD)
back – Back In Time!
a hapless young cadet, boot camp is no picnic, and Misaki is as hapless
as they get. With the help of friends Luxandra, Kiri, and Suzanna,
however, she advances in her training. Pretty normal, right?
Luxandra should be dead. Suzanna should be discharged. Misaki herself
should have vanished in the exodus from Watcher’s Nest outpost. And
the mysterious life form known as the Ghoul still keeps popping up.
It’s up to Lieutenant Commander Ertiana and the rest of the survivors from Watcher’s Nest to find out why everything on Earth is back to normal… when everything else in the universe is anything but. Get ready for a high-octane, faster-than-light ride through space and time in Misaki Chronicles!
Divergence Eve was one of the more surprising science-fiction anime that I’ve seen in recent memory – originally dismissed (by myself) as being excessive eye-candy with female characters who require the low-gravity of space to remain vertical, Divergence Eve demonstrated some chops in being able to swing the watcher’s perception frequently with some interesting plot twists and revelations. Misaki Chronicles starts up where Divergence Eve lets off, our spunky protagonist is somehow back on Earth at the point where she was heading to boot camp before eventually trying out for Seraphim.
Episode 01: 2315 Allied Forces Military Academy
A younger Misaki has just arrived at boot camp, and as you can imagine, she is not exactly having the time of her life. Despite her work ethic, she lags behind in both physical and mental exercises and is routinely picked on by the training staff who feel she is unfit for duty. Despite the usual troubles, Misaki keeps her upbeat tone and keeps plugging away; it’s pretty neat to see the distance of her abilities from her eventual teammates Suzanna, Luxandra, and Kiri who she says are way above her level. On her day off from training, she’s busy at work at a nearby ramen house and ends up spilling on a customer. Her boss sends her off on break, and so she heads to a nearby park, and the customer in question follows her after hearing her name. He is Lieutenant Glenn, an orbital pilot, and speaks to Misaki about her dreams in the military – she claims that she originally wanted to become a pilot so that she could become more understanding of her father (a former pilot who died in duty, as we learned in Divergence Eve), but she is becoming unsure of why she’s doing it, or why she’s chosen the military at all. The next day, the Lieutenant picks up Misaki and taken her on a nice diversion – he takes her to his base, and lets her ride shotgun on an orbital flight with him. After the stresses of space flight and once they reach space, Misaki brightens up immediately and she finally starts to think that she’s getting closer to her father. This little boost gives her the momentum to complete basic and enroll in the flight program.
Back on the Watcher’s Nest (where we left) Lieutenant Commander Ertiana is getting a prep for an eventual mission – she’s being sent back in time to Earth and being outfitted with some new equipment, an upgraded armor capable of being piloted remotely as well as a new weapon that could restrain a partially manifested ghoul. The technicians warn Ertiana that sending this equipment with her back in time could have serious repercussions about the
space-time-continuum and that she should be cautious about keeping it hidden. Her “back-up” for the mission is a rebuilt Motoko, who’s back and as cute as ever.
Episode 02: 2316 Field Practice
The episode starts off with the Commander of Watcher’s Nest communicating with his staff about where they have arrived – apparently, they have returned to Earth orbit but are surprised at the
installations long gone, and have roughly dated the time to be around
2317. He believes that the area around Earth has been subjected to a
type of temporal barrier that
Misaki is in the middle of a survival mission handled in teams – she’s been grouped with Luxandra, Kiri, and Suzanna. Luxandra has stepped up as leader, and although she has an even hand, she’s can’t stop Misaki from screwing up and accidentally shooting one of her teammates. Although just a simulation, this mess up has put the team at a serious disadvantage and they are going to have to become more aggressive if they want to have a chance at winning this competition. The team is now on the move, and with Misaki navigating they aren’t doing too well – but when another team tries to ambush them, they fight back adequately. Kiri has had enough of Misaki’s screw-ups and reads her the riot act before ditching her while on the move. Now separated, Misaki is all alone and worried.
Ertiana is traveling through the forest area and is trying to figure out why she’s been sent here when she manages to come across one of the teams. They recognize her as a higher ranking officer, and she gets briefed on what’s going on. Although she recognizes that teams’ leader, he does not know her and she leaves them alone. Eventually, Ertiana comes across Misaki and starts making dinner with her – the time alone gives them time to talk… or more accurately, a chance for Ertiana to listen. While listening to Misaki’s doubts about being a soldier, Ertiana is tempted to tell her to drop out so that she doesn’t have to experience the troubles that will come at Watcher’s Nest – she doesn’t get a chance as a Ghoul starts to materialize. As she aims her weapon at the monster, the rest of Misaki’s team has finally found her, but the noise distracts Ertiana and the Ghoul slaps her aside. Misaki manages to pick up the weapon and instead of passing it off, she takes the shot herself. Ertiana then orders Motoko to shoot the Ghoul with the Armor.
The damage from the attack affected the temporal barrier around the Lieutenant Commander, and so she’s quickly making her way back to the rendezvous, but the injury is slowing her down. Thankfully, Motoko disobeys orders and picks her up, so she’s not lost when the barrier dissipates. Back on the carrier, Ertiana chats with Kiri and asks about the survival mission… Kiri is surprised, because she states that she didn’t meet Misaki until they were entered the Watcher’s Nest together. She did not go to flight school with Misaki at all.
Episode 03: 1594 The Assassination of Toyotomi Hideyoshi
Ertiana draws all the fun missions – she back in time once again, and she’s now being sent back into 1594 and after an unknown target, and unfortunately her departure point isn’t the greatest. She’s going to have to walk ~80 km to get there. Immediately she is attacked by a man, although once he realizes that she’s not after him, they walk together. In this time period, a local Lord has been attacked by an unknown assailant, but the assassination was unsuccessful thanks to some rather strange powers that the Lord used to deflect an arrow, then kill the man. One of the retainers in this era is another Misaki.
Having arrived at the destination, her traveler decides that it is time to part ways and as he’s leaving, Ertiana asks for his name, which he gives as Kurenai-no-ha. He quickly disappears and makes for the Lord’s home, where he’s to assassinate him. In preparing to attack, the Lord is ready to defend himself, except this time when his powers manifest, they take the form of a Ghoul. Just as Kurenai lays in a pool of his own blood and mortally wounded, Ertiana arrives and is able to drive the Ghoul away with the assistance of Motoko from above. Now the Lord lies powerless, and Ertiana looks to exact revenge but an ethereal Misaki appears and asks her not to, and tells her to instead look after him. She carries him away from the home, and tends to his wounds – but she’s worried about him losing body heat, so she lays with him through the night.
Episode 04: 1594 Frightful Shadow
Kurenai-no-ha has managed to heal quickly thanks to the triage that Ertiana performed. But despite his severe injuries, he’s set on killing the Lord and won’t be talked out of it by Ertiana. Seeing no other choice, she orders Motoko to come to her position with the Armor despite her misgivings about being seen. She boards the Armor and heads off after the reading of the Specular – as they arrive, Kurenai is already fighting it and not faring particularly well; Motoko reports that it is not a Ghoul, just a Specular and that they should leave it alone. Ertiana wants none of that and charges it; upon contact, she is once again visited by the apparition of Misaki who tries to talk her out of attacking but she does not listen and fights. After killing it, the Misaki of this time suddenly drops dead. Now that Kurenai is safe, she tries to talk him out of killing the Lord fearing for his life, but he won’t listen and believes that sacrificing his life to help others would be a fair trade. After learning his true name – Motoko discovers that his mission is unsuccessful after reading about his capture and execution from an online library. The destruction of the Specular has caused the barrier to weaken, so they are forced to leave immediately.
Back on the carrier, the Commander has been worried about the lack of contact from Ertiana, but he’s had a more pressing concern – a series of power failures on board that no one has been able to track down. The cause of them may have been revealed with the final scene – a row of computers featuring the evil smirk of the treacherous vice-Commander from the Watcher’s Nest.
Episode 05: 1936 The February 26th Incident
Ertiana touches down on the carrier and as she’s getting ready to get out, she immediately collapses into her seat. The two trips using the temporal barrier have taken a toll on her body and she’s going to have to sit a mission out. Kiri has been chosen to sortie for the next mission, but she spends some time talking with Suzanna (who has been brain washed). Back in 1936, the Specular Misaki tries to prevent the soldiers from proceeding (they are gaining strength for a coup d’etat, which failed historically but certainly underscores the might of the armed forces in Japan who fought simultaneously in China and with Russia) while the physical Misaki tries to console the fiancée of one of the soldiers, who will not be getting married for the immediate future while the military is in turmoil. Once Kiri arrives, he heads right for the Specular and is drawn into a conversation with Misaki – Kiri realizes that Misaki is trying to change history to prevent the incident from the Watcher’s Nest from happening as well as trying to stop strife from occurring. Kiri is able to talk Misaki out from her goals in this time period, and Kiri returns to base.
This disc of Misaki Chronicles has definitely been entertaining and the story has been easier to follow on this release.. but then again, so was the first disc of Divergence Eve… uh-oh. Anywho, I enjoyed it at least, and will definitely keep watching this one.
(February 28, 2006)
Smith, you're what we call in the business a class-A grinder. Now I'm
not talking about the sandwich, grinder, or the organ grinder you may
find locked in sweaty coitus with your father one fateful afternoon in
- Dr. Dandliker (American Dad)
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