Tide-Line Blue – episode 13

June 27, 2006 on 11:57 pm | In Tide-Line Blue | 2 Comments


Having rewatched Tide-Line Blue over the past month or so, I no longer agree with my verdict of last year. While it is true that the series still has one truly terrible episode in which none of the characters’ actions make any sense (episode four, that woule be), it works better in self moderated doses than it did over the course of three rigid months.
If you look at that, I’ve really said “it’s a TV show that isn’t very good on television”, which is an issue … but the beauty of the modern age is man’s ability to liberate things from their original medium. Or something like that. Anyway, it’s a moot point considering the way the myriad of choices we’re given in this field.

Spoilers for the series’ conclusion before the cut

At any rate, I came to realise last week that episode 12 was actually a fitting conclusion for the series because it suggested that the world had been handed over to Teen and Keel, with Gould choosing to relinquish control in favour of seeing where the children will take humanity.

Episode 13, the DVD only final episode of the series, is more of an epilogue than anything else. It makes more obvious the implications of the TV conclusion and features several touching moments that prove Tide-Line Blue to be a worthy program.

Episode 13 spoilers hereon

Keel, with the assistance of the floating dock, gathers fuyujuu to beam a message to Freedom: they ask their father to broadcast the map to the world.
Also in the episode, not quite explicably, is a scene detailing the circumstances of Gould’s hair, scar, and eye.

For the majority of the episode, Teen gets about in civilian clothes. They do not look right on him, any more than a uniform would look right on Keel (although, admittedly, Keel would benefit from some additional clothes). You get a different view of the character from this experience: as Gould said Teen has begun to “walk his own path”, and a much happier path than the one he left, at that.

While the audience had already discerned that Gould had launched disarmed missiles,Teen needed to prove to the world that Gould was making a statement and announcing his withdrawal. I thought that Teen would have had more faith than that in his captain, yet one can contrast this action with the flashback that immediately preceded the scene, in which Gould and his men are betrayed for having a modicum of faith.
Gould, it is revealed, is not a man after petty revenge; as such, he was never an effective villain, but the writers never set out to make him one. In many ways Gould was more human, faithful and realistic than Aoi ever was.

This is where Aoi comes to the same conclusion that Gould did: one must believe that children are going to inherit the Earth, and so the current generation should act as efficiently as they can not to eff that up. Aoi has finally learned to smile and to accept that which Satoyama told her after the Hammer of Eden, and that her last nine years of struggle have been based on lies. The cheerful acceptance and progress definitely completes her character arc.

The message to space completes another character, one that we never would have expected to hear from: the twins’ father. In asking him to reveal the map to the world, Teen and Keel do not realise that they are asking their father to give his own life so that the world may thrive under a new order. I felt sad (in a good way) when the first transmission in years was sent to Freedom, and was hugely gratified that the sacrifice was not an empty act. In fact, the procedure that led to the destruction of Freedom and the death of the twins’ father allowed an old man to accept that his work was done, and that his dream for the Earth may come true. Indeed, he has also placed fate into the hands of the children, and that is a beautiful thing.

While I was satisfied with the conclusion that Tide-Line Blue had to offer in episode twelve (admittedly only on second viewing many months later), I think that episode thirteen effectively compounds all that was good about the series. One must still wonder who baby Keel’s father was (immaculate conception, perhaps?), but that is a mystery that I am perfectly willing to sacrifice to the mists of time.


  1. Episode 13 was a great addition to the series and like you said, reinforces the happenings of episode 12. I was certainly hoping for a bit more backstory on a few of the issues brought up over the course of the series, but those are entirely unimportant to the final outcome and so I was able to let it go. But I still can’t help but to be extremely curious. I wanna know who knocked up Isla, dammit! As well as what the Hammer of Eden truly was. But I digress.

    I’m glad to see that you finally think well of the series. It’s a show deserving of praise I think.

    Comment by KT Kore — June 28, 2006 #

  2. I felt that I knew everything that I needed to know come the end of the series. Still, I think it sucks in individual episodes because frustrations are allowed to linger too long if you take a long time.

    Then again, I didn’t have any negative reactions towards Joze this run-through.

    Comment by Alex — July 1, 2006 #

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