A brief respite before the storm!
Episode 20 focuses less on the action this time and more on the relationships between several characters, as well as giving an insight into their development.
While the rest of the Federacy and other nations continue to lure out the Legion, Shin’s group is still in hot pursuit of Kiriya. And while they take a rest from all the grueling battles, Shin and Raiden has some heart-to-heart talk.
As evident in the previous episodes, Shin has reverted back into his reckless and suicidal tendencies, a fact that Raiden easily notices. It is obvious that Shin has lost what is left of his motivation, simply being there to live and fulfill his duty to destroy the Morpho. Naturally, as his friend, Raiden would not let the issue slide, resulting to a confrontation.
Perhaps it is only expected given that Shin has suffered so much, especially now that San Magnolia has gone silent. While he keeps finding some purpose to continue, like his mission to kill Shourei, Shin has nothing left now, even with his friends surrounding him. And that in itself is really heartbreaking, considering that Raiden and the others could never pull away Shin from his darkness.
Despite that, the mission continues, and we have a brief scene of Frederica giving Kurena a blunt opinion of the sniper’s infatuation with Shin. There are also some insights regarding the Federacy officers and the way they see the 86 as valuable weapons, which is no longer a surprise.
The highlight of this episode is a tender moment with our heroes enjoying a relaxing scenery. And surprisingly, it has elicit some reaction from Shin, though not strong enough to stir him away from his depression. Shin thinks of himself as merely a ghost who doesn’t want anything, which perfectly captures his mindset. But once again, Frederica gives him some much needed advice, telling him to seek his own future while showing her own vulnerable side and her fears.
Overall, episode 20 tugs at our heartstrings as we see Shin going back to his old ways despite everything he has endured. Unfortunately, our dear Reaper has no time to ponder everything in his life as the Morpho begins its hunt.
Episode score: 9/10.