Angel Heart – episode 6

December 28, 2005 on 10:07 pm | In Angel Heart | 2 Comments

“Reunion”

Many aspects of this series are brought into sharper focus, and make for an overall more compelling story. It’s a mixture of revelation and picking up on things that I missed that brings us to this stage … a stage that maybe does lend credence to the idea that Ryo has a slightly different past.

The Li in Cat’s Eye is revealed to be the leader of Zheng Dao Hui, while the Li who was shot is, in fact, his twin brother. More surprisingly, neither of the Li family members turn out to be “bad” (beyond the obvious fact that they’re internationally wanted criminals), nor are they the employers of Glass Heart. This clears a lot up for me: they wanted her for other purposes. Better purposes.
I had thought that the bald man, who actually wants Glass Heart dead, was in league with Zheng Dao Hui. Anyway, we get some good back story from Ryo.

Something established in City Hunter is that Ryo has no idea how old he is, although he would like to imagine himself in his late twenties. The scene with Li Qian De was set 22 years ago, and Ryo looked much the same as he does now. Given the nine years that passed between the City Hunter continuity and that of Angel Heart, one might assume that the fellow is about 42. This is largely because I don’t like the idea of Ryo getting around like that as a teenager – despite the knowledge that he was raised by guerillas in South America.

On the age kick, this episode reveals that Glass Heart is only 13 or 14 years of age: a surprise, given that she is more “well developed” than Kaori ever was. I’m going to go with the idea that being raised as a trained killer physically manifested itself as Glass Heart “growing up too fast”. From my many years of watching anime, though, I should realise that age is just a number. After all, most of the characters from Macross were teenagers, and really acted nothing like it (this is merely an example, and something that could be researched deeper elsewhere).

The best part of this episode was the long awaited reunion of “Kaori” and Ryo. The way that Ryo held the newspaper over his face so as not to look at Glass Heart was finely executed, and the scene was one of those that swelled with emotion. So many times I’ve been expecting Ryo to kill serious moments with mokkori, and not once has it happened. This truly capitalises on all of the best aspects of the characters that I have come to love.

Despite the inexplicable absence of Miki, I must once again say that I am really enjoying Angel Heart as a way of filling my City Hunter void. Although I do live in fear of Mochiyama becoming a recurring character.

Post script: Just read that this is scheduled to be 52 episodes. I would normally be apprehensive, but this harkens back to the long series of City Hunter, despite the fact that I don’t want this to become another mokkori chasing extravaganza. We shall see what comes… considering that the manga is still going after 16 volumes, I can’t imagine there will really be a problem on that front.

2 Comments

  1. The first episodes of Angel Heart are kind of enjoinable because of these flashbacks about Kaori and her soul acting a first role in the story. However it seems to me that is more to introduce this Angel Heart than to continue the story of the character Ryo Saeba. Yes, it’s indeed a main character but it feels like he has to become the guardian of this new girl, remember that she is “much” younger than what seems to show in the anime. I will comments on this in the next episodes. I dont want to spoil 😉
    I will read more also the manga version, because “Kaori is returned” but not like i thinked of, so i’d like to know if there’s a hope for Saeba (a love partern?) for continuing his life without continously remember the past.

    Comment by Gian — January 7, 2006 #

  2. The thing about me is that I invested a lot in the City Hunter characters, so I’ve got to consider things from that perspective; I don’t really have much of an option to do anything else.
    I will, of course, give Glass Heart a chance to become Angel Heart and lead the anime down its path.

    The best aspect of Glass Heart being so young is that, due to Ryo’s strict policy of making sweet mokkori with only girls of legal age, she’s off limits for any sort of weird relationships that might otherwise have cropped up.

    The beauty of Ryo is that he cherishes the past and the people that he has met in the line of duty. The friendships that he had made was always a key issue for him. My favourite parts of the series were the introspective Ryo scenes that showed another side of the character.

    Given the importance of Kaori, she will always be with him: even moreso than the ghost of Makimura.

    The more I reflect on Ryo and company, the richer they seem.

    Comment by Alex — January 8, 2006 #

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