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The honeymoon period of happiness is over in Suisei no Gargantia. Time to get serious.
It was only a matter of time before we got an episode like this. An episode that marks the end of the happy-go-lucky times in Suisei no Gargantia and signals the start of the main plot we've been waiting for. That's not to say the plot thus far has been irrelevant or bad, but rather it's been in the way of what we've been expecting.
Things are heating up on multiple fronts. The culture clashes takes its toll on Ledo's relationship with the Gargantia as his conviction to take on the Hideauz outweighs his continued diplomacy with the fleet. Ridgett's at arm's length approach to dealing with Ledo also come up, leading to the crumbling of any political politeness both parties have exercised until now. A fallout that was handled well, and in a way that makes use of the 5 episodes - swimsuit episode ignored for this purpose - of negotiations and temporary alliances. As the wheels start turning, Ledo isn't the only one tired of being polite.
Almost out of nowhere, Pinion emerges with his own ambitions. He was never a saint but appeared harmless more than anything. His own sob story gets some attention as he rallies support for an excavation which clearly serves himself more than the Gargantia. He has a bit of manipulative streak which until now has only been used in the comedic sense - getting Ledo to do odd jobs and the like - but given the circumstances could evolve into something bigger. I reiterate: he's emerged from the former care-free cocoon and could potentially turn into a more dangerous character.
Ledo's breaking point was to be expected, but it did have some heartbreaking implications. The relationship he's been building with Amy is about to be thrown away as he refuses to listen to her and follow his soldier instinct. A relationship that after the last episode was just about to take off, and now it's facing a rather big obstacle. The romantic plot of Suisei no Gargantia has slowly taken up more of the screen time, and by the looks of it will continue in a dramatic direction or be put on hold for a few episodes. Whatever happens, Ledo's relationship with Amy will be put to the test as the duo face the inevitable culture clash which until now has been on the tame side of things.
With just five episodes left, the next one should set the tone for the rest of Suisei no Gargantia. The latest development in the plot has finally kicked in and with it comes some exciting potential directions the series may take. All is still well with the series.