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Space Assassination

November 9, 2010

I’m ten episodes into Space Adventure Cobra and I’m already convinced that this’ll become one of my all-time favorite series.

Since my last post on the series, the first story arc has ended and what I’m assuming is the second has begun. The first arc ended with Crystal Boy’s defeat, which was to be expected. What did kinda surprise me is how things played out over the last few episodes of that storyline.

Seeing both of Cobra’s lady friends die wasn’t too surprising. After all, in the remake from earlier this year, Cobra shot a woman in the head. Said woman was on a murderous rampage, but it was a rampage she wasn’t entirely controlling. Something about mental trauma and multiple personalities and shit like that. But Cobra still shot her dead– with a tinge of remorse, mind you, but he didn’t hesitate in letting his Psycho Gun do the deed.

What did surprise me was the way Cobra reacted to the situation. Know how the Daniel Craig version of Bond became all too willing to cross the line when Vesper kicked the bucket at the end of Casino Royale? That has nothing on Cobra’s reaction. I totally expected him to make his confrontation with Crystal Boy and his henchmen personal, but I didn’t expect him to basically turn into a cold-blooded assassin in the process.

Crystal Boy’s primary henchman is a freak named Tavege. He’s a plant-based humanoid who has the ability to implant seeds into your nervous system. These seeds slowly eat away at your body until they eventually kill you, but while they’re working their magic they allow Tavege to control your mind. The bastard uses this on one of the two sisters that Cobra is trying to assist, and in the process he causes this sister to murder the other sister. I’m not the only one that thinks that’s a sick and twisted way to off someone, since Cobra tries to outright assassinate Tavege as retribution.

See, in all the Cobra shit that I’ve seen, he’s never been one to kill someone from a distance like that. He’s not afraid to put a laser through someone’s skull, but he usually tries to downplay the situation and find some way to have things work out without having to kill every damn thing that gets in his way. With Tavege, Cobra gets on top of a building and tries to snipe the bastard when he’s at his weakest. Cobra waits for the moment when this plant-man needs to go to a rejuvenation spa, a joint where he can swim around in water and allow his photosynthesis shit to do its thing, and tries to blow his head off from afar. No confrontation. No witty one-liners. No snarky “Hey, can’t we talk this over?” Cobra tries to off the dude without even giving him a fair fight.

This is pretty interesting for two reasons. First off, it shows you Cobra’s breaking point. Even when Crystal Boy kills the second sister later on in the same episode, Cobra doesn’t give him the same treatment. While we never see him outright say it, based on the circumstances you have to assume that Cobra respects Crystal Boy to the extend that he isn’t willing to try to assassinate him in cold blood. Crystal Boy kills the second sister in a straight-forward duel. She goes out of her way to duel Boy, and she refuses to relent even when Boy offers to take her captive and not kill her if she comes along willingly. She refuses and he goes through with the duel to its only natural end. Cobra still gets revenge for her death as well, but he faces Boy man-to-man. I can only assume that Cobra does this because his hatred for Boy wasn’t raging as much as it was for Tavege. Cobra’s willing to break what few “morals” he has to get revenge on someone that’s willing to manipulate innocents in order to kill another innocent, since he doesn’t go around trying to downright murder people the way he does Tavege.

The other interesting tidbit is how Cobra’s attempted murder backfires. Literally. Tavege has a trio of sentry robots that act as a shield. Apparently he’s someone that expects people to try to snipe him from a distance, especially when he’s at his weakest, and has specially designed robots to protect him from such an attack. Cobra’s Psycho Gun shot reflects back at him, and while Cobra dodges his own attack, his partner-in-crime Duck doesn’t fare so well. Duck was Cobra’s latest lackey, an informant that turns traitor and helps out Cobra after trying to help some other thugs take him out in an earlier episode. While Duck was a criminal that probably deserved to be decapitated-by-laser, it goes to show that Cobra’s attempt at cold-blooded murder didn’t go unpunished. He went too far, and in stepping beyond his morals he has to deal with the consequences.

To a certain extent. Cobra just finds a closer hiding spot inside an elevator shaft and assassinates Tavege at close range, thus bypassing the defense bots, so he still manages to get his vengeance. But in order to do so, Cobra had to put himself in relative danger. He was shown that trying to play it safe in the murder/revenge game just isn’t gonna cut it. That’s a cute little morality play or whatever going on there.

I’ll get into the next arc’s shit later. The short of the next arc: It’s totally playing out like a James Bond movie. Even more so than everything else that’s happened in the series.

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