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[personal profile] davetheanalyzer
 That was another great episode, both in terms for Eri’s character and her development and the ratcheting up of stakes with L Corp now seen truly for where it is. I did like the tension as she and her friends waited for her results to be counted. She tried to keep composed but as the announcements reached to the last twenty, she almost dared to consider she might be among the top nine. The montage as her song played of all the struggles, motivation and hard work she went through was nice, as was her speech to all the fans who she not only thanked for voting for her, but vowing to reach first place with every event and potential fan she could touch. Her ambition and hard work were what propelled her to tenth place, a satisfyingly high ranking for someone new to the group to work to but not so high that it was unbelievable. Since one of her catchphrases is being “the center of the universe,” of course she wants to get to first place, so she could make the maximum number of people smile.

I found Eri’s call with her mother sweet, showing the former did fulfill her goal in making the latter happy. I did like the glimpse of Ms. Karan’s office life, that though it’s a grueling job, her coworkers are nice enough to throw a little watch party for her daughter. Ms. Karan telling Eri, “You’re my number one idol of the entire universe” was very sweet and Eri seemed invigorated by it.

When Eri was invited by knight onto his ship, it seemed she expected to be celebrating with the other idols of Appliyama 470, maybe even to her Izumi in more detail. The reveal to her that L Corp is Leviathan and all of the buildings with the logo on them was effective and creepy. It seems Knight wanted to scout her to be Leviathan’s Idol ambassador, spreading the A.I.’s influence as a rising star in their idol group. Knight offered her the chance to actually be the center of the universe – but Leviathan’s universe. I wonder how she would have reacted before or after she got her Applidriver to that kind of offer. I have trouble thinking she would agree to that at any point in her life, but it’s an interesting thought.

Though she’s clearly disturbed by this revelation, I love how she declared she wasn’t going to accept Leviathan’s manipulative help and for the happiness of her fans, she was going to number one herself. She has principles and she isn’t going to bend them. Nevertheless, I did wonder how she got past all those guards to get to her room and what took the guards so long as she took her time to dress in her default outfit and retrieve her things. It almost seemed like Knight held them back a bit so Eri could have a sporting chance of fighting back. It doesn’t sound that much out of left field for him. Eri and Dokamon fortunately didn’t get put in much of a damsel position. They merely held off the guards until the Applidrivers came to the rescue. Eri’s jump into the water as an escape was pretty cool, though any injuries she would have sustained from hitting the ocean were cheerfully glossed over. Granted, Dokamon did leap to her before the impact, which might have softened the landing. So overall, Eri was amazing and wonderful these past two episodes all around.

The second major focus was Rei and Hackmon’s infiltration of L Corp. At this point, they seem to be a well-oiled machine when it comes to going into places they shouldn’t. Granted, I did wonder why the guard didn’t then report Rei’s intrusion (Hackmon scrambled hi equipment?) and how the two people in the security camera room didn’t hear Rei and Hackmon speaking mere feet away. Rei and Hackmon’s brief confusion about why L Corp is collecting the personal information of Appliyama 470 voters was kind of amusing, since I’d think they as hackers would know that a lot of companies do this to better advertise their products and keep track of potential customers. Yet they sense something more sinister afoot. They were able to track down where the Bootmon image came from, which was apparently Knight’s computer. That sleeping Appmon the pair didn’t notice I kind of forgot about until he/she/they appeared. I wonder what that Appmon’s role is? Maybe as a version of Belphemon? Whatever the case, I wonder if that Appmon played a role in alerting of Rei and Hackmon’s intrusion.

The other major thing of note was that when Hackmon got captured by one of the electrocuting tentacles, he insisted Rei get out of there, but Rei risked being shocked to save him. Rei did say Hackmon was essential in saving Rei, but they seemed to both know he meant something additional to that. Their bond has grown. I wonder how whatever connection Hajime has to Hackmon will effect that.

I did find it interesting that, whether by coincidence or intention, that their first place of sanctuary was the Applidriver home base. This indicates their growing trust in the group and the magnitude of what the pair discovered that they zoomed over there to regroup and inform their allies of the full truth. With this revelation, I wonder if Rei and Hackmon are going to stick closer to the Applidrivers in the remaining episodes. With the height of the new threat, they might have little choice but to more directly work with their allies, since it would be harder and more dangerous to fight against Leviathan alone after whatever the Ultimate 4’s actions will be.

Other comments. Astra’s tension throughout the countdown and his teary-eyed pride in Eri at the end, was pretty sweet and a continuation of the development of his relationship with her in the previous episode. He practically cheered Eri’s method of escape from Knight’s ship and wished he could have recorded it. I was amused that Haru’s first mention of Yuujin’s absence was pointedly glossed over and him messaging Yuujin about Eri’s situation before that’s immediately interrupted by Eri’s jump off the ship. I accidentally glimpsed some summaries for the next episodes and it seems all innocent. Yet I wouldn’t be surprised if there is something more to what is described that might pick up those mind control eyes thread.

Next episode’s preview is kind of vague on what else is going to happen besides the Applidrivers being pwned and the Ultimate 4 showing off their powers and hopefully their (Intimidating but probably still quirky) personalities. Those said episode summaries have spoiled one or two things for me regarding that episode but I’m not going to say it to spoil anyone else and in the hopeful but very unlikely case I might actually forget so it’d be a surprise again. Looking forward to it nevertheless.

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