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  • Author's Saving Throw: Many people were disappointed that the DVMC audio drama is not available in Lantis' Youtube channel. It was announced that it'll be included in the Japanese retail release.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Kaname is one of the more violent Tsunderes out there; is her aggression justified with how outright dangerous Sousuke can be in mundane situations, or does it make her obnoxious?
    • There is no middle ground when it comes to people's feelings toward Gauron. They either love him for being a psychotic Stalker with a Crush that just wouldn't die, or hate him for being a shallow villain that doesn't have a grander purpose in life.
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    • Leonard Testarossa is no better or worse off than Gauron. He gets appreciated for being an honorable, Noble Demon whose intentions, extreme as they may be, may be grander and more for the greater good than anything Sousuke would care for. But at the same time, his cockiness and Insufferable Genius, along with his superiority complex have earned him great ire among his detractors.
  • Complete Monster: It should not come as a surprise than, taking place in the fields of war, this anime stores people who fight and kill for a living, regardless of being good or bad. Even so, take a look at these two horrible fiends who manage to make a bunch of mercenaries look like saints in comparison.
    • Gauron, aka Mister Iron, is the main villain of the first season of the show. A former mercenary from Hemaljistan (Afghanistan in the light novels) Gauron was the archenemy of main character, Sosuke Sagara, long before the series began. In flashback, we see that Gauron was responsible for killing all of Sosuke's comrades in Afghanistan. In the present day, Gauron kills a KGB agent he was working for when the man argues with him. He then hijacks an airliner after killing the captain, threatens to murder all the high-school students onboard if the authorities refuse to cooperate, and kidnaps Kaname, whom he has subjected to experiments. When that plan fails, Gauron returns months later, working as a nuclear arms dealer. When Sosuke and his new team try to interfere, Gauron kills all of them except Sosuke, gloating the entire time. He later hijacks the Tuatha De Danaan submarine, planning, again, to kidnap Kaname, and threatening to sink the sub. That's in Season 1. In Season 2, we find out he's the one behind the actions of Creepy Twins Yu Fan and Yu Lan, whom he sends to kill Kaname as a means of screwing with Sosuke, before blowing himself up in a final attempt at Taking You with Me. In all of his appearances, he is incredibly proud of the number of Sosuke's friends he has killed, constantly rubs it in his face, and seems to be trying to push Sosuke into killing him. A truly sick individual, Gauron is engaged in a game of psychological warfare with a 16-year-old kid, all because of a warped Stalker with a Crush obsession.
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    • Gates, the Big Bad of the third season, is just as insane as Gauron. A ruthless merchant of death afiliated with Amalgam who seeks to escalate the conflict with the North and South of China into a full scale second war for profit (And most likely he was around in the first one too). Gates also feeds on poorer eastern countries who don't receive aid of the capitalist or communist blocs by selling his art-of-the-state weapons to them, always speculating with "never balancing one side or the other". After reaching to a disagreement while dealing with an army colonel who happens to be his customer, Gates orders he and all his men to be slaughtered right before him while he gleefully sings. Other numerous acts of violent cruelty continue to be perpetrated by this man, such as kidnapping diplomats during the Chinese cease-fire treat renovation and killing anyone who opposed his raid. Gates doesn’t show any respect for his subordinates' lives either, those who work for him withstand inhumane waves of abuse, and the threat of death is always constant. Even his Co-Dragons, the Xia Yu twins, grow to despise him. When they betray him by deliberately causing panic in Hong Kong, Gates spends the rest of the season hunting them down, while taunting them via radio. At the climax of the series, when Xia Yu Lan dies, Gates retrieves her corpse, preventing Leonard Testarossa from simply burying her, and brings it to Hong Kong, where she meets Xia Yu Fan. For mere amusement, he starts swinging the corpse around with his Arm Slave, imitating her until Yu Fan loses her composure and attacks him, only for Gates to brutally run her through with his monomolecular cutter. Though Gates' comic relief antics didn't hide his utterly perverse and vile nature, one should be grateful that this destructive, sadistic animal of a man didn't get too close to any of the main characters very often.
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  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Tessa, to the point where she gets her own OVA all about her day.
  • Evil Is Sexy:
    • Yu Lan and Yu Fan so very much.
    • Gauron is rather attractive for a middle-aged man.
  • Foe Yay: Gauron spends an awful lot of his time thinking about Sōsuke. Not to mention the whole "I love you Kashim!" thing. Or how, in the novels, he said he would've wanted to kill him and fuck his corpse.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Chris Patton and Mike Kleinhenz played ex-COSMOS child soldier Yu Ominae and Fatman in the Spriggan OVA. Here they play Sousuke and Kalinin. It becomes more painful that Sousuke finds out that Kalinin has gone rogue and has to face that fact that he needed to fight him.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: in Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood, Chris Patton betrays Kent Williams' group because he (Chris) won't play second fiddle to everyone. Here, since Kent Williams replaced Mike Kleinhenz as Kalinin, it's quite the opposite.
    • Greg Ayres as Shinji Kazama gets to this when he voices Kensuke in the Evangelion Rebuild series.
  • Ho Yay: Overlapping with Foe Yay, Gauron towards Sōsuke. It is now completely canon. Watch the TSR comedy radio show where Gauron acts as the school's "sensei." Gato is doing this on purpose. Gauron orders Sousuke to write on the chalk board "Kashim loves Gauron Sensei. Heart. ♥" as well as "Gauron Sensei's extreme attack makes Kashim's heart pound. I want to have children with him." Followed by what appears to be an attempt to rape Sousuke in front of the class. Yay for subtlety.
  • "Holy Shit!" Quotient: The number of jaw-dropping moments in the series dramatically increases beginning with Continuing On My Own/Invisible Victory, and it doesn't let up. To wit, we have...
    • Amalgam launching a full-scale attack on Mithril's island base — including several Behemoths— ending with multiple officers dead, the base being overrun, and Tessa and Kalinin being separated.
    • Amalgam launching a simultaneous attack on Sousuke and Kaname, turning Kaname's hometown into a warzone.
    • Kyoko being held hostage with explosives wired to her, and later getting severely injured by shrapnel from a missile attack after Sousuke disarms the bombs and leaves with her and Wraith.
    • Kaname willingly giving herself to Amalgam following an intense battle between Sousuke and Leonard, which ends with the Arbalest being destroyed.
    • Sousuke's life as a mercenary being revealed to his classmates.
    • Sousuke's new friend Nami being murdered by Kurama in an attempt to provoke him (which works all too well), which results in a later firefight between the two that ends with Kurama dead and Sousuke's severely wounded with a gunshot to the abdomen.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: Sōsuke. He's been paired with pretty much all the major characters, plus some side characters. Men, women, friends, enemies, characters much older than him, you name it. (He would probably believe that "shipping" would be used in its actual sense.)
  • Les Yay:
    • Mao has actually groped Tessa's breasts and spends an inordinate amount of time with her, often while inebriated, naked, and in a sexually charged mood.
    • Also, Yu Fan and Yu Lan are first shown onscreen sharing a very intimate shower scene...
    • Tessa and Kaname even share some Les Yay moments occasionally, despite being rivals for Sousuke's affections.
  • Memetic Mutation:
  • Moe: Oh Lord, Sōsuke when he was young. Absolutely. Adorable. And very huggable, too. Especially when he's holding his Bonta-kun stuffed animal.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Gauron hijacking Kaname's class' plane, endangering the whole class.
    • Gates murdering Yu Fan after taunting her with the corpse of her sister.
  • Squick: Wait, was Gates just whacking off, and all that was shown on screen was a picture of a kitten?
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: The anime sountracks include some examples, several of which seem like deliberate homages.
    • "Tokkou Yarou" is incredibly similar to the theme from The A-Team. The title is actually "Tokkou Yarou?" / 「特攻野郎?」(yes, with question mark) which means something along the lines of "Gung-ho guys". Lampshaded with a Theme Tune Cameo as a cellphone ring tone and someone says it's sounds like an old American TV show (which indeed was called Tokkou Yarou A-Chiimu when broadcast in Japan).
    • The Second Raid has "Shissou", a piece suspiciously similar to the theme from Airwolf.
  • The Scrappy: Shinji Kazama. Despite his friendship with Sousuke, it gets really grating whenever Kazama points out any military machinery, especially in the middle of a serious crisis. His backstory doesn't help much, either.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: As stated above, Leonard was meant to be a fairly sympathetic villain, with his mommy issues and his semi-noble goals. It didn't quite work out that way...

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