The 65th episode of Legend of the Galactic Heroes serves more as an update to the political situation than anything else. The decision to declare independence by El Facil creates more dilemmas not only for Yang, but for the terribly overworked Lebello. The Imperial fleets also set off and begin work on turning Phezzan into a functioning capital, before Reinhard prepares to make a decision on how to act.
The episode begins on Heinessen, where the facade of a functioning government is being maintained through hiding the facts of the disappearances of Yang and Lennenkampt. Lebello can only look on as the mob demands the government go public with the truth. Matters for him are not helped by the Imperial authorities staying completely silent as to avoid embarrassment.Rumors quickly spread as to what happened to these two men, most of which border on the ridiculous. The popular ones, though, turn Yang into an epic hero for the people, including one where he emerges on El Facil.
Unrelated to the plot, but the sound effects of large groups of people has improved dramatically from the Jessica Edwards stadium scene from the first season. Demand for the truth also seems like an unrealistic goal for a mob as well.
Yang, though, remained indecisive about what to do next and was content to wait at Dayan-Han for the time being. Cazellnu being especially frustrated at the fact that Yang was more interested in deciding the name of their fleet “The Irregulars” than in actually planning what to do next. Cazellnu asks Yang if they should head to El Facil, but he remains undecided.
On El Facil, the autonomous government was alone in declaring independence and they continued to aggressively recruit Yang to join them. Their leader, Francesk Romsky publicly appeals for Yang join their democratic cause.
Back at Dayan-Han, Attenborough suggests they retake Iserlohn and declare the area from the fortress to El Facil as liberated territory and mount a resistance against the Empire. Schenkopp demands Yang go to El Facil and be welcomed as their leader, but Yang says the leader of a democratic society must be a civilian. When Schenkopp points out that Yang is really no longer a soldier and asks why Yang seems hesitant, he moves on to say the difference between Yang and Reinhard is in ambition more than talent. He says Reinhard takes a situation and forces it to bend to his will, but Yang is different and he wonders what exactly Yang wants to happen. Yang says he just wants Lebello to cover up his whereabouts well.
Schenkopp’s continued quest to try to turn Yang into a Reinhard, or rather, Rudolf figure continues to go nowhere. He is able to see how they are entirely different personalites, yet, he refuses to see that it isn’t going to happen unless Yang has no other choice. Maybe his goal is to try to force Yang into that spot.
Meanwhile, a worse for wear Lebello holds a press conference in which he denounces El Facil’s actions as a threat to the existence of the Alliance, and takes no questions though the media want answers about Yang. As he leaves, he is told that Huang Louis wants to see him, but Lebello says he doesn’t want to see him. He asks about Bucock’s reactivation, but he is told Bucock has refused due to health reasons. Lebello then says Trung will have to be reactivated instead. As he walks away lamenting how everyone is pushing their responsibilities onto him, his handlers believe he will not last much longer.
The once admirable Lebello has turned into yet another hypocritical politician because he’s the one in charge. While refusing to take responsibility for anything Louis brings to the table, he is angry at being forced to take responsibility for the actions of others.
As he takes a drink with his dinner, Yang is jealous of the fact Attenborough is young enough to see the El Facil situation as something like a student movement. He then runs through the scenarios regarding El Facil and Iserlohn with Frederica, and seems to come to the conclusion that they will have to try to negotiate Reinhard into promising to respect the establishment of an independent state at El Facil. Yang sees Reinhard as someone who would not break a promise based on his one meeting with him. However, that would not rule out one of his subordinates going rogue and attacking them, though after the events on Heinessen, Reinhard should be keeping an eye on them. For the time being, Yang believes it is better for Reinhard to continue living.
Yang then eats some of the stew prepared for him, and he is surprised at how good it is. Frederica then reveals that Cazellnu’s wife made it since Cazellnu wanted Frederica to concentrate solely on her job duties. Elsewhere, Cazellnu tells his wife that he convinced Frederica by saying it was a waste of resources to have her cook.
Frederica then asks why they aren’t going to El Facil. Yang says that it comes down to two issues. First, they do not have the strength to fight off the fleets from the Empire should their movement spread, and the Alliance could well decide to declare them enemies. Also, by waiting it out, the Alliance could become frustrated at the Empire’s moves and ask Yang to return as supreme commander.
On Heinessen, Lebello appoints Trung as interim Supreme Commander. Trung says he does not want the interim tag removed since he expects Yang to return to reclaim it. Lebello believes there is no way Yang would return, but Trung raises the possibility that Yang could join Reinhard in a mission of revenge against the Alliance. He says it is best if they leave Yang with options. Lebello, though, finds it hard to believe that Yang could serve under and autocratic ruler like Reinhard, but Trung is quick to state that Rudolf started as the leader of a democratic government which turned into a reactionary dynasty. Lebello then says they should kill Yang, but Trung says while he would have no problem being ordered to fight Yang, the common soldiers would resent being forced to essentially do the Reich’s job in defeating the one man who can defeat them. Lebello disagrees with that train of thought, but Trung says his opinion doesn’t matter in that case. Trung then excuses himself while thinking that Lebello is on the verge of burning out.
Now, Lebello has completely lost touch with his soldiers. He could not understand why Bucock refused his appointment, and when Trung tries to tell him what soldiers would think of his solutions, he refuses to see that he is wrong.
On August 30th, Mittermeyer’s fleet prepared to set off from Odin. As Reuenthal accompanied him to the Beowulf, Mittermeyer could not help but ask his friend to begin thinking about marriage. Reuenthal laughs the suggestion off and says Mittermeyer should know better than anyone that he has no intention, nor right to marriage. Mittermeyer brings up the fact that Elfriede will be traveling with Reuenthal to Phezzan, and asks him if he likes her that much. He says he finds it admirable that her goal is to see the aftermath of his downfall. Mittermeyer says she isn’t good for him, and when asked by Reuenthal what he would do, he says he would give her some money and kick her out. Reuenthal says that bit of advice is unlike him, but Mittermeyer says he should create a way out for himself. Reuenthal then reiterates that he is a military man, and that he would die in battle before a woman lead to his downfall. Eighteen days later, Reinhard’s and the rest of the main fleets set off for Phezzan.
Since this is obvious foreshadowing, I think it is pretty certain that Elfriede will play a large role in Reuenthal’s likely self-inflicted downfall in the future.
While at Dayan-Han, Attenborough has important news he wants to reveal to Yang and Frederica. Yang says he knows about the Imperial fleets moving to Phezzan, but Attenborough has something else he wants to tell them. He reveals that Schenkopp’s illegitimate daughter is part of the fleet, but he hasn’t told anyone other than the two of them. Yang asks how he came to know this, and he says he saw the name Katerose von Kreuser in the list of pilots for Yang’s Irregulars. He says he went to see her and saw 15 or 16-year-old with a short temper. Frederica asks if that was a sign Attenborough is quitting his bachelor life, Attenborough says it isn’t mostly because it would lead to calling Schenkopp Dad. He says she would be a better fit for Julian. Yang says that wouldn’t work because he already has Charlotte, though it would be interesting to see Katerose and Charlotte fight it out over Julian. Frederica says they would get a good in-law either way. Attenborough then raises the issue of Julian’s whereabouts, and Yang insists he is fine despite there being no contact for a long period.
Julian, meanwhile, had made his way to Odin to check out the Neue Sanssouci, which was being converted into a history museum after the capital move. Poplan, had other things on his mind, and was busy arranging dates for himself with locals. Poplan gives some advice to Julian in saying that versatility never pays, and joking says Julian should be better than himself in love affairs. As Poplan runs off in pursuit of another woman, Mashengo restates that man cannot go against his fate.
Back on Phezzan, Silverberche was working incredibly hard on immortalizing his name in creating a capital that would be worthy as the center of all human activity. Reinhard, meanwhile, continued to wait on reports from Steinmetz on Uruvasi and Saam on Heinessen so he could determine the best course of action.
On Uruvasi, Steinmetz prepares to head to Heinessen to take control with only a small group of men. Krusenstern warns him about the risks, but Steinmetz tells him to destroy Heinessen if anything happened to him, so as to take care of the chaos there. Steinmetz left, but turned around quickly when Saam sent him a report which warned him of the possibility that Yang could launch a surprise attack on Uruvasi.
In October, communications from Yang’s party stated their intention of returning Lennenkampt’s body. Using the notes on the circumstances of his death and Saam’s reports, Steinmetz sent a report on what he believed happened on Heinessen to Reinhard. The episode ends as Reinhard comes to a decision and summons his 3 top commanders.
Thoughts: An unexpected cliffhanger here. Knowing Reinhard, I’d expect him to not rush in since there really isn’t much of an opponent in the Alliance. Since it’s October, I’m very surprised Lebello hadn’t burned out by now, he looked days, if not hours, from going mad by the end. It would also be interesting to see what the reasoning is behind finally giving up Lennenkampt’s body.