Blogging Legend of the Galactic Heroes Episode 86

At least she didn't go completely tsundere when handing him this drink.

The 86th episode of Legend of the Galactic Heroes concludes the 3rd season of the series by revisiting Iserlohn. Slightly under 1 million people remain on Iserlohn, but Frederica and Julian have to be content with this being the foundation of a new government. Meanwhile, Reuenthal begins building his administration on Heinessen, while also laying the foundation of jealousy and betrayal. Finally, the new government is announced on Iserlohn, but its continued survival relies very much on the Empire.

The episode begins on Iserlohn where Cazellnu and Julian discuss their present situation. Julian says that Iserlohn has lost its strategic importance because it relied on two opposing powers lying on either end of the corridor. He also says he believes Reinhard attacked the fortress only because of Yang’s presence and nothing to do with strategic value. Following Yang’s death, Reinhard retreated back into his strategic self. After Cazellnu remarks at how similar Julian has become to Yang, Julian says a split in the Empire would be the way Iserlohn would become important again, but they must be prepared to wait a similar amount of time to the 50 years it took Ale Heinessen to escape the Empire. Cazellnu observes that neither Frederica or Julian have an easy task because both will be seen as having taken advantage of Yang to get into their current roles.

By the end of July, almost all of the deserters had left Iserlohn leaving just under a million people on the fortress. However, the ratio of men to women stood at nearly 2:1 with the vast majority of women already married with families. Attenborough saw this as a potential source of conflict between male crew members, while Poplan said that although nearly half of the men would end up losing he would not be providing them with help. Cazellnu, though continued to stress coming up with new ideas to maintain a military structure.

I found the male-female ratio very interesting. It suggests that there is a potential for unrest amongst those men who end up as losers in the relationship game. Continued fighting would probably solve that dilemma, but it is the last thing that they need at the moment at Iserlohn.

Meanwhile, Knapfstein was busy crushing Bergengrün numerous times in his head.

On Heinessen, Reuenthal was busy setting up the political and military structures that he would use to govern the Neue Land. On the military side, he had appointed Bergengrün to serve as the Military Inspector-General, much to the displeasure of Knapfstein and Grillpalzer, who would now have to serve under a man they shared the same rank. Serving under Bergengrün would be Ritschl, who served under Steinmetz and had familiarity with the internal situation of the Alliance. On the political side, Julius Elsheimer was appointed on the recommendation of Reinhard with Trunicht serving under him. Coincidentally, Elsheimer was Lutz’s brother-in-law.

Bergengrün discussed Trunicht with Reuenthal, and he stated that he believed it was a bizarre appointment. Reuenthal understood the appointment to be meant to humiliate the former Alliance head, and if he stepped out of line he would be executed. While that may have ultimately been what Reuenthal would have wanted, the conversation turned to what to do about the migrants from Iserlohn. While non-combatants would be allowed to go free, higher-level officers would have to register monthly. Then, Murai’s name popped up on the list and it was decided that he would have to be under constant surveillance. Reuenthal made the calculation that praising Yang would be enough to direct anger toward those who had deserted Iserlohn.

I think it would be rather strange that there would be a worry about anger at the Empire right now. After Trunicht and then Lebello had utterly destroyed confidence in government, I would think that the citizens of the Neue Land would be mainly focused on security more than their own self-determination at this point.

De Viller's mere existence means that something evil is happening. Maybe he's just misunderstood...maybe not.

Elsewhere, Boris Konev, Marinesk and Cary Willock talk about their disgust at the situation at how Yang is being used as well as their homeland of Phezzan for the Empire’s gain. Konev then spots De Villier on the street in a crowd of people and the 3 men begin to follow the group of Terraist members. While they are doing so, they talk about Julian’s successes in following on from Yang. While Konev thinks he has talent, he wishes that Julian would be more cunning than Yang. The other two are more optimistic about him though. They stop when they observe the group going into the mansion of Trunicht, with Konev pleased he will be able to witness drama on Heinessen.

Back on Iserlohn, Julian tries to find the will to continue on from Yang by thinking about what his mentor would have done in certain situations. Julian is able to find the irony in the fact that democracy is being kept alive by a personality cult that Yang would have hated, but the fact that Reinhard never defeated him makes his memory live on. Julian, though, wishes that he were still alive even if they were losing battle-upon-battle. Julian later walks over and talks to Frederica, who is struggling with the fact she has her own enforced workload because of her responsibilities as political leader. All she is able to say is that they must create their own principles for action.

At the canteen, Julian is handed a drink by Katerose who says it is a Kreuser family secret recipe to deal with fatigue. After Julian painfully downs the drink, she tells him of her admiration for Frederica and then the length of time she spent with Yang and how much time her mother spent with Schenkopp. Then she told him how she once foolishly asked her why she fell in love with Yang. He speaks of his feeling of not being experienced enough for the job. Katerose understands it, but she says inexperience is something she lives off of comfortably. After Julian thinks that she is indeed Schenkopp’s daughter She says men who take advantage of the lenience of women are the worst.

Poplan observes the conversation from a distance and tells Attenborough about Yang’s luck with women transferring over to Julian. Attenborough seems more concerned with Poplan’s numerous relationships with different women more than Julian’s, though. He tells Poplan that different people have different values.

Call me cynical for the fact that Katerose seems more interested in Julian now that he heads the military operations there, but this really does seem cliche. As a mere ensign, he was supposed to be content with the daughter of one of Yang’s friends, but as he gains power suddenly he seems more interesting to certain women. I guess that is one problem I’ve had with this series is that bar Mittermeyer, the relationships formed seem to rely on someone gaining power before things develop.

Later, a meeting is held to decide the name of the government that heads Iserlohn. Poplan suggests the Iserlohn Commune, but that is rejected by Attenborough because every attempt at a government with Commune in the name had failed. Linz suggests the Iserlohn Republic Government because it would be temporary and he felt that Yang wouldn’t want a creative name. While it would be called the “New Government in August” in some circles, Julian was at least encouraged by the fact that the Alliance was founded by a group that had no famous politicians at the time. Frederica says they should hang pictures of Ale Heinessen and Yang in four places, but nowhere else because it would encourage idol worship. While he would be embarrassed to be held in such high regard, Frederica says he is needed to at least see what happens while his picture hangs.

I have to wonder when they had the time to commission that painting.

Finally, 63 days after Yang’s death, Frederica announced the creation of the Iserlohn Republican Government which would stand for the ideals of Ale Heinessen in the midst of the adversity that democracy faced. While those on Iserlohn celebrated the continuation of democratic rule in the universe, the fact remains that only 1 out of every 425,000 people lives under democratic rule.

Thoughts: The third season concludes while focusing mainly on Reuenthal’s government, a plot by the Earth Church and the Iserlohn survivors. These seem to be very much the pieces that will continue the series from this point on. The Trunicht-led conspiracy is almost certain to play a part in Reuenthal’s downfall, but that could make Iserlohn important again in the grand scheme of things.

6 thoughts on “Blogging Legend of the Galactic Heroes Episode 86”

  1. Call me cynical for the fact that Katerose seems more interested in Julian now that he heads the military operations there, but this really does seem cliche. As a mere ensign, he was supposed to be content with the daughter of one of Yang’s friends, but as he gains power suddenly he seems more interesting to certain women. I guess that is one problem I’ve had with this series is that bar Mittermeyer, the relationships formed seem to rely on someone gaining power before things develop.

    There’s nothing wrong with this.

    I’m saying thus as a man who married “above his station.” While my then girlfriend could appreciate me for my qualities, this was only the beginning. What was really taken to account was my potential — as a provider, as a contributor the family’s fortune, as a partner and perhaps leader. And, I would not, and could not declare myself and my suit to her parents until I’ve won a certain measure of success (social, or in my case corporate, promotion).

    The difference between Katerose and my wife is that my wife supported me through my finding my feet in a big way.

    Similarly I’ve known men who support their girlfriends achieve certain career or business milestones before proposing marriage or getting more serious. Though more commonly I see macho men be content or prefer their women to be socially, intellectually, and materially inferior to them. These are the same men who are either amazed or laugh at me for marrying an attorney (and a military one for that matter).

    Those guys never bothered me.

    1. I knew that thought would elicit a decent amount of response. For the most part, I think opinion would probably lean in your direction. As a complete outsider to this system of stations and status it has a different effect on me. I think I get the same reaction to any sort of romantic formation in fiction and real life actually. It’s pitiful, but life experience tends to make things this way.

      1. Stations and status doesn’t need to be rigidly defined. These could just be an uneven income capacity, or education, or social mobility. I had always been outgoing though a “closet introvert.”

        I attended a pretty expensive university where most students come from well-off families. I found myself in a lot of awkward situations socially because my background is white collar, but working class.

        I think that it’s obnoxious to fail to consider luck. I definitely think I’m lucky as opposed to attributing my current circumstance to some inherent set of attributes, or some heroic effort. I just thought what a friend said to be very sensible: “you can’t get lucky if you don’t play.”

  2. “Call me cynical for the fact that Katerose seems more interested in Julian now that he heads the military operations there, but this really does seem cliche.”

    I can’t help but thinking that Katerose was always deeply intrigued by the fact that so many people swooned over Julian. She (like many of us!) just couldn’t fathom why men like Yang, Poplan, Merkatz and even her mighty father were so high in their praise of him. And then when circumstances forced Julian to step up to the plate, she became aware that Julian was indeed a man of many virtues.

    I loved Attenborough’s comment on the fate of every government with the name “commune” in their title doesn’t suceed. It is interesting though that the Alliance which had been what we would recognize as a traditional liberal democracy with a free market, has in it’s Iserlohn form ended up being a rather leftist militarist enclave, with a planned economy (Cazellnu). It’s really not much of a republic at all at the moment.

    1. I think the biggest difference between the Iserlohn and the Empire at this moment is not its political structure, but the way they view the citizenship. The New Empire, however benevolent toward its people, is still operating under a “Ruler-Subject” premise in its society. And people under Empire does realize this fact and possess the unconscious fear toward the authority.

      On the other hand, Iserlohn’s leaders, especially Julian and Frederica, strictly forbid themselves to force other’s wills. It is evident on Julian’s decision to allow those who does not want to stay go, and Frederica’s speech at the founding ceremony of the new government. For those who lives in Iserlohn, the relationship between them and their leadership is more like an unspoken trust (or a contract). Frederica and Julian consciously aware that they are just mere representative. And what make people of Iserlohn “trusts” them is the fact that they are the close-relatives (wife and son) of the one man who represents the value of democracy of their time – Yang Wen-li.

    2. A group of a million people doesn’t need that large a government. The fact that power is held by a group of 5-6 unelected people just seems to pass everyone by. Though I’d probably go along with 208’s thoughts on citizenship versus structure, there would have to be elections at some point. Also, I don’t see how the economy could work any other way. In complete isolation from the rest of humanity, a free market would probably be detrimental to the fortress as a whole.

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