With the preview of episode 12, I would have to say "partially yes."
Ok, Charles is supposed to be a Bifauxnen but seriously, did ANYONE honestly buy that? I mean, come on! Who would actually think that she's a guy in that poor disguise?
The dub partially fixed the issue by making Charles sound more masculine, but a bit less convincing as a girl though.
Because in the world of anime it's not unusual for boys to look like girls. Seriously, though, I don't expect the average viewer to be fooled by that. The light novels probably did the Bifauxnen thing better.
If you ask me, it's borderline Paper-Thin Disguise. Also what makes things worse is that she doesn't even act well. It's either the students are idiots or they just want to see some yaoi-action...
I call it denial. The girls want to believe Charles is a boy.
That makes so much sense...
Not just the girls. Ichika's case is even worse. He needed to be confronted with the full frontal truth.
I think the teachers, at least, knew. It probably went something like this:
Chifuyu: So, apparently there's a new male IS pilot, from France. He's transferring here.
Chifuyu: Yes. Oh, and he apparently has his own personal doctor, so he won't need to go to the school nurse for a physical or anything.
Board: So...she's a spy?
Chifuyu: Obviously. Let's put her with my brother. He has a way with women.
Thank you! This has been bugging me for a while until you put it that way. Now things makes a whole lot more sense.
On the subject of Charles, this is more of a minor nitpicking but...how the hell did she hide her...ahem, assets without binding her chest?
There are a ton of ways to pull off breast binding. How she was able to breath normally though is another story.
Stomach breathing. You breathe with your diaphragm instead of using your ribcage
Her uniform shirt is a TARDIS. Seriously, look at that scene where it's partially unzipped.
Yamada landing on Ichika
I'm pretty sure it's a typical Harem AnimeRule of Funny but when Yamada-sensei crash landed on Ichika in an IS suit, with force strong enough to create a crater, he not only survived, he somehow ended up ON TOP of Yamada-sensei in a Thanks For The Mammaries situation. Keitaro, eat your heart out.
Yamada-sensei could grab him and do 180 degrees turn with him in last second. Considering how she is skilled and her reaction, she could "crash land" on him on purpose.
Especially since she doesn't seem to mind having Chifuyu as a sister-in-law...
I know it's just comedy, but Cecilia actually SHOOTS at Ichika and Rin throws her BIGFUCKINGSWORD at him when they get pissed at his Accidental Pervert moment. Rin made a comment on how it would have been dangerous when Houki took a swing at her with a kendo sword. People freaked out when Houki was about to get shot by the drone. And no one, not even Chifuyu-sensei, wants to reprimand the two for almost killing Ichika?
Well since they saw him surviving an IS crash-landing on him and maybe they overestimated his durability?
Actually, that was explained right after he crash-lands. The IS produces a shield that prevents the pilot from being harmed while wearing it. In other words, having the shield seems to give the pilot a form of Nigh-Invulnerability.
I was refering to the incident in ep 5 where Yamada sensei lost control and crash-landed on top of him...which also somehow resulted in Thanks for the Mammary.
He still had his personal IS storage widget on, so he might have been protected then too.
I'll be the first to admit I laughed pretty hard during the Cinderella play, but "the weapons are made out of safe materials" my ass! Ling was throwing those knives with enough force to embed into concrete pillars and Cecilia's rifle made mincemeat out of a thick wooden door! Not to mention that big ol' ball right out of Raiders of the Lost Ark took down an entire tower. It was enough to start making me a little worried about Ichika's well-being there.
In the comics Ichika is FULLY aware of this. And its the reason why he doesn't make any romantic advances. Because if he does then it means that the rest of his harem would go fully Tsunsdere overdrive and try to kill him. Heck look at the last episode of season one.
Letting the students get away with destruction
How much the school staff allows the students to get away with continues to boggel the mind. So far we have destruction of property, hospitalization of students, use of illegal tech, ATTEMPTED MURDER, and disruption of classes! What the hell is wrong with the IS Acadamy? Is it because control of an IS is such a big deal that governments put pressure on the school to keep students in?
It's a national representative's very nature to have a lot of pull with the school, seeing as how they're officially backed by the governments of their respective countries. It's highly doubtful that any other student at the school could get away with it. And yes, I.S. tech in this universe is Serious Business, especially with many nations not so subtly considering military applications for them.
The second season starts to address this more. When Houki, Ling, & Cecilia get into a quarrel in the hallway and cause some minor damage to the walls with their IS arms, Tatenashi puts a stop to it and makes them do chores and fix up the mess. Later, when Laura's Clingy Jealous Girl tendencies come into play with her trying to hit Ichika with her IS arm's Laser Blade, Chifuyu grabs her and throws her across the classroom while snapping that "the only place I should smell burning meat is at a steakhouse!"
Then there is the Hammer Space that the IS suits emerge from. How does that work with even the loosest understanding of physics?
I just applied A Wizard Did It and figured that the suits are actually summoned, of course, not that this supposedly magical explanation will do anything in this science fiction series, but all in all, MST3K Mantra is the way.
Since dropped equipment dissolves and suits with shield power exhausted vanish, I assumed that everything but the necklace/bracer the pilots with personal suits wear is Hard Light.
White Knight Incident
2341 missiles from all over the world just got hacked and fired off at Japan, triggering the White Knight incident. Pray do tell how exactly did they hack the missiles all over the world targeting at one specific location, and how can one I.S. suit can even stop them!? Sure, if we take into account that Chifuyu may be the White Knight or not, but you'd still want to know how the hell she (remember, I.S. can only be piloted by women at this point) stopped them with nothing but a BFS!?
Frankly, it's all Technobabble; just roll with it as long it doesn't contradict itself. So yes, missiles all over the world can be hacked, and in regards to the IS suit, well, there's something called badassery.
It already contradict itself. Take a look at some of those missiles, they are short range ones. The only ones capable of traveling such distance would ICBMs and perhaps guided missiles. The ones White Knight was destroying were just some small ones which should NOT be able to even reach Japan even if they were shot from or Korea not to mention the other side of planet.
This might be an example of Unreliable Expositor. Not to slide into the realm of Wild Mass Guessing here, but it could just be that hacking is the official story, and something more sinister happened. As for how they were stopped by just a BFS, we don't know what the white knight is capable of yet.
In the 12th episode, Chifuyu subtly implies that Tabane was responsible for the mass hackings, since she's probably the only person smart enough to pull it off, and it was all just to show off White Knight's capabilities.
Two thousand missiles vs. one IS seems very lopsided, but slightly less so if the ICBMs were not armed with nuclear warheads. Non-nuclear ICBMs are being designed by the U.S. military, so in this slightly more futuristic setting it's possible countries have developed a stockpile of these. If the ICBMs were nuclear, than this is inexcusable, as not even an IS could survive a single nuclear blast (whose temperature can exceed the core of the sun).
That is assuming they explode when destroyed. Nuclear weapons nowdays have a very careful set of procedures to arm and detonate it. If the detonation sequence is not completed, it won't blow up.
Ok, how come no one points out the fact that IS was built BY a woman FOR women? I mean come on only women can pilot it? If it was tech discovered in ancient ruins, extra dimensional universe, alien tech, etc., then I could believe it, but built by humans? And no one can figure out how both sexes can use it? Really?! And the fact that the main lead who is the only guy on the planet that can pilot an IS happens to be the love interest of the inventor's little sister? Coincidence? I think not! Seriously the plot's got more holes than Swiss cheese. Not trying to be sexist here I'm just saying, this is some really bad writing.
Tabane discovered the gender limit late in the development of IS. She can fix it but it didn't interest her.
It's also Black Box technology. You ever heard how programmers don't even know how their own code works? Yeah, it's like that. Whatever part that limits it to females is buried so deep in the structure that you'd have to re-engineer the entire thing from the ground up to fix it (and Tabane obviously didn't notice since when she tested it herself, it would've worked fine). Plus Tabane is insane and probably doesn't care about that sort of thing—she has better things to do.
There is also the fact the Ichika is able to pilot IS in general, not only the Byakushiki. It's hard to believe that Tabane made all 460 or so IS cores to be specifically compatible with Ichika.
I'll give you that. The anime just isn't doing the novels justice at this point, and is putting the series itself in a bad light. 8-bit had better get their asses in gear for the final.
So basically what you're saying is that she intentionally made the IS core ONLY for woman just so women can take over as the dominant gender making men pretty much second class citizens and made sure that Ichika would be the only guy to operate an IS because of her little sister, is that what you’re getting at? If so then I can see where you’re going with the sexist undertones of the show, but I wouldn’t get too much into it; it’s all just played for comedy.
That and the fact that it's the writer's excuse for surrounding Ichika with lots of women, it's a Harem Anime after all.
...so much wrong with that. I'm just gonna start with: It's not peace and love. It's basically a Cold War. If any country starts using IS suits for combat, everyone else is going to do the same. Note the Black Rabbits, Laura's military IS squad...despite the fact that using them for war is completely illegal. These things are under a decade old, it's just that no one wants to be the first to break the treaty. But when someone does, everyone else will be ready.
The use of IS is just like the situation of the JDF (before the change of policy). Using it for war is prohibited but every country can maintain an IS force to deter and defend against armed aggression involving IS. Most IS are national property under the control of the military; the IS champion tournaments are mostly fought between military test pilots. If you read the manga, you will see Rin in military uniform press her superior to let her come to the Academy.
In episode 12, Tabane states outright that she doesn't know how Ichika can use the IS—even after Chifuyu hypothesizes that the whole thing was an intentional set up, as a sort of gift for Ichika.
Yes, because Tabane always tells the truth.
For Infinite Stratos' premise to hold up at all, it is a necessary condition that a single unassisted human: simultaneously developed at least five separate impossible sci-fi technologies (hammerspace, energy weapons, passive inertia canceling, force fields, and propulsion) in the present day; miniaturized and vastly improved a slew of existing technology, particularly robotics and computers; integrated them into a mech-suit which obsoletes literally ALL other military hardware, ever; completely prevented any of the above technology from being reverse-engineered (the most anyone else can do is tweak her mostly-complete creations), despite drawing the undivided focus of most of the civilized world, so that the technology exists exclusively for use in IS units; flawlessly engineered and averted an international crisis to make a mockery of the combined accomplishments of said civilized world; all culminating in making society her personal bitch, period. She then used her newfound power to set up a romantic comedy scenario for her little sister and that little sister's childhood friend. That is exactly why Ichika is the only guy who can use an IS. It is in the viewer's best interest to remain blissfully ignorant of this fact. If ignorance is impossible, acceptance and suffering in silence are the only solution, because it is the foundation on which the entire story is built.
So let me get this straight. Some IS is on the loose and Japan decides to send two inexperienced teenagers, one of whom just got her IS, to fight this menace instead of experienced users (i.e. Chifuyu and the other teachers) who are just left to create a blockade. None of the other countries besides Japan cares either? Like you know... the US since it's their IS going amok. And they have high tech cameras to track and follow the enemy IS which is in hypersonic as well as follow Ichika and Houki's IS but they FAIL to notice a fishing boat?
Houki's IS is the only one that can match the speed. That's just the way it is, and its locked to her. Now, there is the question of why they sent Ichika instead of Chifuyu (since she has the one-hit-kill sword too), but I've been getting the impression that she might not be able to fight anymore, since we haven't seen her do anything during the anime. If that's true, then Ichika's the only choice. If not, then I suppose it still makes some tactical sense: If Ichika and Houki fail, then Chifuyu will be ready as the last line of defense.
I get the feeling that Chifuyu isn't allowed to use an IS anymore.
It's implied at the end of that episode that Tabane deliberately engineered the whole thing as an excuse to show off Houki and Akatsubaki's abilities.
Another idea to excuse the poor operators: you've been told to keep track of this cool-ass hypersonic robot. The area is supposed to be clear anyway, so there's no real reason to keep an eye on the ground. Then you introduce two more cool-ass hypersonic robot children to the mix. They might not have noticed Godzilla popping out of the ocean right then
Ichika finding Laura naked on his bed, was that in the light novels, or anime-only?
That was in the light novels, Volume three. It was also in the first part of Episode 9.
Thanks, and how did she get in anyways without Charles/Charlotte noticing?
Considering Char's Shipper on Deck tendencies towards Laura/Ichika, it's quite possible they switched rooms for the night. It's not made clear (in the anime, at least), when they found a new room for Char.
Charl was probably already switched to another room, and Laura's probably had military training in stealth so sneaking into his room without any notice shouldn't be very difficult for her.
The Academy's Purpose
So what's the point or purpose of having the IS Academy? I thought IS were restricted to military, professional sports? And given the amount of collateral damage we've seen, this begs another question; why are they training teenagers to use IS? Are they part of the military or what?
It's kinda both, but mostly oriented towards the sports side. This is why Laura was so pissed when she came to the academy; she was trained in the military direction, and all her classmates are treating the most powerful weapons system in the world like a toy.
But the question still remains; what is the purpose of the academy, and why are they training teenagers of all people to use such dangerous weapons?
It was stated in the novels that the students are expected to have professions related to the military or government after they graduate. Besides wouldn't it be common sense to maintain a place where new potential pilots can be found and trained?
And they simply trained their new potential pilots under their own governments and military because...?
Because Tabane and/or the Alaska treaty said they had to send any potential pilots there, or they don't get an IS, perhaps with the end of middle school as the agreed upon testing period. Many countries begin vocational training at the high school level.
While it was nice to see some much needed-action this season, there was a lot of odd stuff that happened in this episode.
Why did Chifuyu order Laura, Rin, & Charlotte to just stand by and do nothing while they were on a train with a bomb about to blow up? It seems like it was because the doors were locked but we've seen numerous times that the girls can summon an IS arm easily. Rin and Laura could easily get past a locked door since they have a Power Fist and a Laser Blade arm, respectively. Did they really have to wait until Kanzashi had bypassed the hack?
Where in the world did Tatenashi get that BFG laser rifle from at the end? The last we saw of her in the episode, she had been defeated by Squall and crashed into a river. That was in the evening. Then the fight progresses into the night and Squall finally arrives to help Madoka and that's when Tatenashi unleashes this giant gun. There was no buildup to it, no Foreshadowing, nothing. It just felt like a Deus ex Machina to allow them to shatter Squall's defense.
Are they ever going to explain those bizarre visions Ichika has? This is the second time he's had them and it makes even less sense than the first, especially considering this is an anime-original episode.
It is becoming increasingly clear the woman he sees in the visions is apparently the Byakushiki itself. Since Volume 8 seems to hint that I.S.'s have a "biological component" as evidenced by Chifuyu's speculations on Chloe.